On Quality Sleep

As I continue to age and leave behind my youthful energy and resilience, it has become evermore important for me to structure my days in a sustainable, productive, and efficient way. In previous years, particularly in high school and university, I thought myself to be firmly in the night owl camp — sleeping at 2 or even 3 AM was not uncommon, and this would in turn shift the productive hours of my day towards the afternoon and evening. When you are a student with no time or personal obligations, it is possible and even enjoyable to live such a lifestyle. However, being a 9-5er with goals outside of my professional life, the game of time management is one I am starting to appreciate, and enjoy. It seems to me that having less ‘free time’ actually leads to more productivity and ‘true free time’, because it forces one to address the mandatory tasks and blocked off hours of the day before scheduling the remaining personal time with tasks of priority. Like anyone else, I have my highly productive days and practically useless days, however one thing that has been a consistent and critical variable in the productivity of my days has been the quality and quantity of sleep. The benefits of sleep are well documented, and I will not attempt to rehash them here. However, one must approach sleep in a personalized and disciplined way in order to get the most out of their days. Below are a few of the most important factors in mastering sleep and maximizing the potential of the day:

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On Running

This year I decided to try and make running a part of my daily life — if I am being honest, I was finding that my lack of lower body endurance was affecting my Sunday league soccer performances and I wanted to do something about it. However in the process I have actually come to enjoy it; once you get your body up to speed with the demands of regular running, it becomes a mental challenge more than anything. The days when I run the fastest and the farthest are the days when I am completely dialed in and not even paying attention to my time or distance travelled.

I usually do 5-10km runs, 3 times a week: it’s the distance and frequency that I have found to be manageable and sustainable. Running has become one of my favourite tasks of the week; I hope the benefits and tips below can motivate you to start running too.

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