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Old 12-19-2009, 03:22 PM   #1
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Sleep

Much of my life I worked hard physically or I did prolonged heavy exercise and slept very well- I essentialy passed out at night. Also I had sex most nights which sure didn't hurt

Recently it has become more problematical. (The nightly sex for sure, but the sleep too ) Recently I was away, under some considerable stress, and not having any opportunity to exercise well and I really found sleep hard to get. I would fall sleep OK, but if needing to pee or some other thing woke me it was not easy to get back to sleep.

Since I've been back home I have seen to it that I walk a lot- maybe 6 to 7 or 8 miles daily. It doesn't have to be all at once. I can walk downtown, eat lunch, do a little shopping, go a museum- but I have to walk at least a few miles straight, ideally coming up the hill to home.

If I can force myself to do this, and it gets harder after a few days, then I sleep as well as I did when I was young. Sometimes when coming back up in the dusk or dark with a light rain falling on my head it gets really hard to watch a bus go by. I guess as in many other things, discipline really counts.

I feel like a weak man that life is requiring to become stronger.

I'd like to hear other sleep tips not involving pills.

Ha
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Old 12-19-2009, 03:45 PM   #2
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If I go to bed and find myself still awake after 20 minutes, I get up, drink a glass of milk and play on the computer for a while.

When I go to sleep and wake up in the middle of the night, sometimes I have a difficult time falling asleep again. Something that works for me during these times is I start thinking about a situation I would like to experience. I start playing a very detailed scenario in my mind over and over and I usually drift off to sleep.
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Old 12-19-2009, 03:48 PM   #3
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I have similar issues when stressed and not readily able to exercise (as has recently been the case), except that I fall asleep and then pass in and out of wakefulness all night often punctuated by frequent unsettling dreams. It is a relief to get up after a night of that.

Other than liquid measures (juice of the hop and all that), I don't have a solution save exercise during the day. What about weight lifting on the nasty days, Ha?
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Old 12-19-2009, 04:08 PM   #4
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My exact same experience, haha, and the same experience of my girlfriend, too. We both agree that when we can't sleep we haven't exercised or worked physically hard enough in the daytime. (Funny you should mention this as we just talked about it the other day.) In fact, when I miss working out in the pool for over two days I have a heck of a time getting to sleep myself.
Girlfriend's husband plays golf most days...sleeps like a baby.

P.S. I'm guessing your normal, haha. How about taking 3 mg. Melatonin at night?
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Old 12-19-2009, 04:36 PM   #5
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One of the best aspects of my (so far, 41 day) retirement has been the freedom to go to bed when I want to, and sleep when I want to, for however long I want to.

When I awaken like that, and can't get back to sleep, I just get up and start the next day. I will probably feel sleepy later on, and take a long nap when I feel like it.

One thing that I have noticed that to me is very odd, is that some days I need a lot of sleep (like, maybe 10-11 hours) and other days I seem to need only 5-6 hours. One would think that my sleep needs would be consistent from day to day, but I guess they are not.
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Old 12-19-2009, 04:50 PM   #6
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Staying away from products with caffeine in the evening makes a big difference for me. No reg. coffee or tea or sodas after 6. Otherwise I can never fall asleep.
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Old 12-19-2009, 05:03 PM   #7
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It's normal to need and get less sleep as we age. Just ask a baby! And remember when you were a teenager and wouldn't get up before noon on Saturday morning? Studies show teens need ~9.5 hours of sleep per night. Haha, not so much!

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Old 12-19-2009, 05:34 PM   #8
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Nap.

It'll pass.
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Old 12-19-2009, 05:42 PM   #9
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Nap.

It'll pass.
Yep.

I experience similar disruptions of my normal sleep patterns from time to time. They rarely last for more than a few days - gives me a chance to practice my napping skills. I'm thinking of turning pro.
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Old 12-19-2009, 05:44 PM   #10
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One issue in aging is the melatonin blue light thing. No not the pills. With my recent cataract issue, lots of reading on the lens/vision/photorecepetion characteristics.

The upshot is that as the eyes age, the become blue filters due to yellowing of the lens. Recent (2001) discovery of special blue photoreceptors in the eye which provide non-image info to the brain which in turn controls the body's master/slave clocks hence circadian rhythm, thus sleep patterns.

Blue light specifically suppresses melatonin production, thus keeping one alert. By age 55 or so more than 50% of blue transmission of the eye lens is gone. Past 65 it is down to about 25%. So is the body's circadian rhythm.

For good informative stuff and a start for further research of your own:
http://www.crstodayeurope.com/Issues...4_mainster.pdf

If in a hurry see page 3, Scotopic and Mesopic Vision, half way down right column.

This may or may not help, but sure is food for thought. Unable to make offers on how to fix the problem for any particular individual.
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Old 12-19-2009, 05:56 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by W2R View Post
One of the best aspects of my (so far, 41 day) retirement has been the freedom to go to bed when I want to, and sleep when I want to, for however long I want to.

When I awaken like that, and can't get back to sleep, I just get up and start the next day. I will probably feel sleepy later on, and take a long nap when I feel like it.

One thing that I have noticed that to me is very odd, is that some days I need a lot of sleep (like, maybe 10-11 hours) and other days I seem to need only 5-6 hours. One would think that my sleep needs would be consistent from day to day, but I guess they are not.
Same here! I go to bed when I get tired...usually about 1 a.m., and sleep until I'm ready to wake up....normally about 8 a.m. Sometimes I stay up later and get up earlier. Sometimes I go to bed earlier and sleep in later. I have NO set bedtime or wake-up time....I leave it all up to my body clock. Some nights I'll sleep 4 or 5 hours and be off and running for the rest of the day! Other times I'll sleep for 9 or 10 hours, and then get up and get going. Same amount of energy and ability to function, and seldom take a nap either way. Also, caffeine and spicy foods have no affect on my ability or inability to sleep well....I partake of both very regularly at night before going to bed.

One thing that I have found that does seem to help me fall asleep if I can't just drift off, is to take a TUM (and not due to indigestion or anything like that)....don't know if it's the calcium or what, but if I'm laying there and can't get to sleep, I chew up one TUM, and I'll be asleep in mere minutes!!! Weird, but true!
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Old 12-19-2009, 05:58 PM   #12
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...gives me a chance to practice my napping skills. I'm thinking of turning pro.
I'm a serious nap afficionado. 10-12 minutes is my specialty -- good for at least 4-6 more hours of partying. But a good 20-30 minute snooze is also great, especially when I've been in a deficit. The real marathon naps are not for me except maybe after a time-zone situation or other major disruption.

And when I nap I actually sleep better at night than if I haven't. Napping is right up there in the top 5 voluntary biologic activities I enjoy the most.
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Old 12-19-2009, 06:00 PM   #13
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Sorry Ha ! If their were sleep Olympics I'd be a gold winner for sure . I can sleep anytime ,anywhere except a plane . I am also a stress sleeper so when I'm really stressed I sleep. Hope you get this worked out because not sleeping is not pleasant and unfortunately at our age if we wait for nightly sex to cure it we may be waiting a long time .
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Old 12-19-2009, 06:12 PM   #14
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I can sleep anytime ,anywhere except a plane .
The sound of aircraft engines makes me sleepy. I've been on more than one flight where I fell asleep prior to takeoff and wasn't awakened until the wheels touched the runway on landing. And on a couple of these flights I was a passenger...
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Old 12-19-2009, 06:52 PM   #15
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unfortunately at our age if we wait for nightly sex to cure it we may be waiting a long time .
I keep hearing this...I hope it's not true for everyone, because if it is, I'm doomed...doomed I tell ya.
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Old 12-19-2009, 06:53 PM   #16
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Ahem! Do go on, bbamI dear......
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Old 12-19-2009, 06:54 PM   #17
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Ahem! Do go on, bbamI dear......
I hope I'm able to....
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Old 12-19-2009, 07:04 PM   #18
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My guess is your sleep patterns were temporarily disturbed by a time zone change and stress. That will resolve itself shortly.

I find that if there are troubling things still pinging around in my subconscious, I will wake up in the wee hours, say at 2 or 3 or 4 AM. When that happens, I just get up rather than worry about getting back to sleep.
Usually within 15 minutes, my pillow is calling out my name to please come back. Problem solved.
If not, I just stay up and hit the recliner and nap later.
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Old 12-19-2009, 07:17 PM   #19
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For me, it's definitely stress-related. If I have something major happening at work the next day (flying to a different city, important meeting with the boss, etc.), I usually cannot sleep well. It's ironic because it's also when I need sleep the most.

I also go in spurs when it comes to sleep needs. Some weeks I need 8 hours a day, other weeks 6/day. Usually if I can get an average of 6 hours a day during weekdays and 7 hours on weekends, I feel OK.

I try to adhere to these principles:

1) Go to bed half an hour earlier than I need to. This way, if I don't fall asleep right away, I won't feel as anxious (which causes more lack of sleep).

2) Never listen to music within 3 hours of sleep. I tend to have tunes in my head I can't get rid of. It's horrible to be tossing and turning for 4 hours with some obscure music lines in your head.

3) Don't drink more than 1.5 cups of coffee a day, even if it's only early in the day.

4) Sometimes it helps to have some white noise (recording of rain or waterfall, incomprehensibly low volume of BBC radio programs, etc).

5) It's a cliche, but do read a really dense book. For example, the book "From Colony to Superpower: US Foreign Relations since 1776" puts me to sleep within a couple of pages.

I am not sure what it's like for other women, but sex doesn't really induce sleep for me...maybe that's topic for another thread.
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Old 12-19-2009, 07:29 PM   #20
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In my case, if I drink wine with dinner, I'll sleep like a baby til about 2ish a.m., and that's it for the night. A co-worker shared that she has the same experience; we're calling it the wine effect. If you normally have wine with dinner, try skipping it a couple of nights and see if you can stay asleep longer. Also, various medications will disrupt my sleep pattern. Right now, I have to take steroid tablets for 5 days in a row for pleurisy, and I would swear these darn pills are keeping me awake even though I take them in the morning. Review your medications and see if sleep interuption is indicated with use.
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