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Old 08-21-2007, 01:04 PM   #21
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I think one of the least desirable effects of aging that I've noticed is that the quality of my sleep has really gone down. Generally I'm asleep within minutes of my head hitting the pillow, but I'll wake up several times during the night, usually only for 10 minutes or so. I do usually manage to resist the urge to go to bed earlier than 10, and I'm happy if I don't get up before 6. I feel like I'm really sensitive to the time of sunrise.

If I have trouble getting to sleep, a single generic Benadryl will usually put me down.

Odds are good that I'll doze off watching the tube after dinner. That's where I get the greatest use of of Tivo!

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Old 08-21-2007, 06:28 PM   #22
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Take some Melatonin 30 minutes before you go to bed each night.
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Old 08-21-2007, 07:28 PM   #23
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After a stressful day at work, I just finished an hour working out at the gym. No socializing, no "hanging out", but an hour of actual, rigorous working out, challenging myself, focusing on nothing but my workout, and doing a little more than I could do last time.

I feel soooo relaxed! I don't see how anyone could work out like that and NOT feel relaxed, at peace, and able to sleep like a baby at the end of the day. I guess I am really lucky to respond like this to exercise even at 59 years old.
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Old 08-21-2007, 07:48 PM   #24
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I really envy people who enjoy working out and get that wonderful relaxed feeling afterwards. As a kid I was very active in school, drill team, cheerleader, dancing, water skiing. I have never experienced that high when as an adult I worked out, sweated, got the heart rate up, and worked all of my muscles. I've exercised for a year or two at a time for 45 min to 1 hr per day, 6 days a week at the peak, before letting it taper off due to boredom and just life's stresses. Every 2-3 years I try it again and have gone through this cycle all my adult life. I have NEVER experienced any good feelings after working out other than just being glad it is over. As I recall, I am generally just PO'd that I have to take time out of my day to sweat!

Different strokes for different folks I guess. But I truly envy those who exercise and feel remarkably better afterwards AND those who can get a good night's sleep or go to sleep at will. Those are 2 things I have never been able to do in my entire life. Guess I should not have expected to sleep well in retirement since I didn't even sleep well as a young person.

I've tried benadryl, all of the sleeping pills, melatonin, and many other remedies. Nothing has ever worked. All it does is make me feel really bad the next day.

I am just going to have to accept the fact that I don't sleep more than 3-4 hours a night and get on with it. I think that is why I was able to work 12-14 hours a day for 24 years. I just didn't require sleep. Rich said the body will catch up, but for me, I just don't think it is going to happen.

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Old 08-21-2007, 08:16 PM   #25
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Texas Gal ,
Exercising is boring but like cooking it's a necessary evil .I find if I alter my exercise choices it's easier for me .I love swimming so I spend all summer which in Florida is April thru October swimming then I switch to walking & biking .The trick is finding something that you like or at least do not detest .
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Old 08-21-2007, 08:46 PM   #26
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Zipper, do you think the melatonin really works? What brand and what dose do you use? Daily?

Want2Retire, what time did you exercise? I've always heard that it's best not to exercise too close to bedtime---that's why I was surprised when Nords said he could do tae kwon do at 7 and be sleepy at 9.

TexasGal, I hear you. Not being able to sleep is like flunking one of life's basic skills. I do push myself to exercise and for the most part enjoy walking as long as it's in a beautiful natural setting like a park. Mall walking is just forced exercise. And now that I've developed bunions, don't know if I'll eventually have to switch to a nonweightbearing activity like swimming.

In college I had a roommate who slept through fire drills! I think she was probably the person I most admired at school, since sleep on that level is something I've never once experienced. And I've never overslept in my life---not sure if I've missed out on something wonderful right there!
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Old 08-21-2007, 09:00 PM   #27
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TexasGal, most kinds of cardio are boring for me. I do my warmup and then a little walking, treadmill, and elliptical, because I know my body needs them even though they are boring. For me, the weight machines are a lot more fun than any of the cardio, and not boring at all so they are the majority of my workout. I really look forward to that part of my routine, and to be honest that is where I challenge and push myself the most (probably because I like it). Like MoeMg said, the trick is finding something you like.

TangoMonster, the way I phrased that was probably misleading. Although I could still feel the effects of my workout when I wrote that (and still feel all tingly and great), it had been a little while since I got home afterwards. I get off work at 3:30 and drive directly to the gym. I get there about 3:45-3:50 and I am changed and out on the floor by 3:50-3:55. I am done by 4:45 to 4:55, and then drive home, watch the 5:00 news, cook and eat dinner, and get online. Seems to work for me. Often after dinner, by 6:30 or so, I drift off for a few minutes. I don't really go to bed until 9:30 or 10:00.
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Old 08-21-2007, 11:22 PM   #28
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There is a technique of using audio to "entrain" the mind into different mental states called Binaural Beats. Some are built to cause deep relaxation, others to wake you up.

If you have access to an mp3 player or a cd player that is close to your bed, try one of these sleep audio files:

FREE Binaural Beat MP3 Downloads | SleepPhones

Or install and try this program out:

BrainWave Generator - Download

It has lots of programs built in to try out.

Just make sure that you have earphones to listen with, as it requires stereo separation of the tones in each ear. If these seem to help you, I can send you lots more links to different programs and audio files.
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Old 08-22-2007, 02:01 AM   #29
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After age 50 the melatonin in your body decreases, so taking melatonin supplements really WILL make a huge difference. It is a mineral, in the vitamin section of your local drug store, and costs little to take. It is very safe to use. Read your directions.
I am up at 2 a.m. right now. I went to sleep at something like 7 pm because I was just run down. NOW to get back to sleep I came to the computer...and ate a ham sandwich.
Food does it for me almost every time. Many times I wake up and toss and turn, and cannot sleep; because I am hungry! I don't realize I am hungry, because there are no hunger pangs...but, if I eat something like a peanut butter sandwich (heavy and sticks to the ribs), off I go to bed within 30 minutes or so. Works for me....
As we get older, we require less sleep. I wish I had been one of those people that could get away with 4-5 hours a night like Oprah or Bill Clinton or Donald Trump when I was younger. My gosh...the extra work I could have gotten done... No wonder they had a leg up on the rest of us, those lucky dogs.
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Old 08-22-2007, 02:19 AM   #30
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It also took me more than three years of FIRE for me to stop having work nightmares and waking up screaming or shouting.
Hey - another gift from ER. After reading your post I realized that it's been a year or more since I had a work nightmare. DW used to have to go sleep on the couch because I was fighting bad guys in my sleep.

My sleep has been weird for the last several months. I've found that I get fixated on some task or project and going to bed at a decent hour just gets forgotten. A couple of months ago it was scanning photos. I would start out in the morning with the intention of doing a scanning a small batch of photos, and next thing I knew it was 0200 and I had been scanning all day. 7,000 photos/negatives/slides later, a half a Tb of disk space was filled up and a project that I thought would take two months was done in less than two weeks. My sleep was screwed up for a month after that.
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Old 09-16-2007, 03:20 PM   #31
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An update: I'm now sleeping much better. Sometimes able to fall asleep within five or ten minutes, usually not more than an hour after going to bed at midnight. Getting up about 7 to 8. Not asleep all night long (the toilet calls my name once to three times a night!) but able to fall asleep again afterwards. Some deep dreams.

Possibly my hormones just straightened out---or it could be the combo of 3 mg. melatonin about an hour before bed, sometimes followed by an antihistamine chaser (the stuff in Dramamine) seems to work well for me. May be worth a try for others....
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Old 09-16-2007, 03:25 PM   #32
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Just don't also chase it with booze and do a Karen Quinlan on us.
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Old 09-16-2007, 05:33 PM   #33
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An update: I'm now sleeping much better.
Monster, glad to hear this. Good sleep makes one feel so much better.

Ha
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Old 09-16-2007, 09:36 PM   #34
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I didn't see anyone mention this solution. I found after 50 I was having a difficult time sleeping or staying asleep. I started taking powdered calcium. It works for me. Recently I take a liquid that has calcium and magnesium. I sleep through the night.
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Old 09-17-2007, 03:50 AM   #35
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I didn't see anyone mention this solution. I found after 50 I was having a difficult time sleeping or staying asleep. I started taking powdered calcium. It works for me. Recently I take a liquid that has calcium and magnesium. I sleep through the night.
Maybe the age-old "warm glass of milk" remedy has some merit after all? Milk is a great source of calcium.

Seriously though, others in my family have also used the calcium/magnesium supplement as a sleep aid and swear by it to; never tried it myself.
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Old 09-17-2007, 11:01 AM   #36
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Hmm...maybe your bedroom isn't conducive to providing a calm, meditative quality of sleep.
My bedroom is very stark: no clutter, no radio, no phone, no television set, and no knick knacks. I do spend money on the softest sheets and the "fake" down comforters....the whole trick is to make it a sanctuary of peace for the mind and body.
You can also take a few deep breaths to calm your mind down before you get into bed.
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Old 09-19-2007, 12:59 PM   #37
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Very good point. I also read some where that reading and watching tv trains your brain to stay up rather then sleep in your bed.
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Old 09-20-2007, 09:02 AM   #38
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Odds are good that I'll doze off watching the tube after dinner.
I've studied this, and have decided that this is to be avoided at all costs! That is, if I fall asleep watching TV, I will not sleep well that night. If I start to fall asleep in this situation, I force myself to get up and walk around a little.

In fact I try to never nap later than 3 PM or so.
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Old 09-20-2007, 09:26 AM   #39
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In fact I try to never nap later than 3 PM or so.
I nap from about 5:30 to 6:00 every day, while watching the news on TV. It is absolutely delicious.

Usually if I have insomnia, it is because I am stressed out from work. Anything I can do to lower that stress and stop thinking about work seems to help (so I usually do a sudoku at bedtime - - mindless enough). Also, if I get too tired I have difficulty getting to sleep.
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Old 09-21-2007, 09:05 PM   #40
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i love sleeping. but i've always been a night owl. forcing myself to sleep during so-called normal hours while attending school or while working always caused me stress. now i simply sleep when i am tired. what a wonderful luxury that is.

happened to notice an advertisement for Delayed Sleep Phase Research Study aka night owlism just in case anyone was looking for something to do while you can't sleep.

just took their test, if i lived in san diego i'd qualify. at end of test they have this curious link Chapter 6 - Advanced & Delayed Sleep Phase: Bright Light Treatment - Brighten Your Life, an eBook by Daniel F. Kripke, MD.
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