three easy ways to sleep earlier and feel better the next morning

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these days, being busy has become a point of pride for many people who live fast-paced lifestyles. it’s like everyone needs to constantly be doing something to feel productive, but in truth, this can actually be counterproductive and even get in the way of your sleeping habits. how many people do you know profess to be insomniacs or ‘night owls?’ or maybe you could be the one having trouble sleeping at night. scientific studies have shown that adults need about 7.5 to 9 hours of sleep per day. usually, getting very little sleep results in feeling groggy and unproductive the next day. making small changes to your daily routine can have long-lasting effects in sleeping earlier and being more productive! here are some easy suggestions on how to get some much needed sleep and reset your body clock.

UNPLUG! these days, people are practically glued to their smartphones, computers or other gadgets to make sure they know exactly what’s going on everywhere in the world via the Internet. or maybe they rely on the television to help them go to sleep. make it a point to turn off your computer, TV or smart phone at a certain time at night to help control your sleeping schedule – you can do this by setting an alarm about 45 minutes before bedtime. you can use your time to wrap up your remaining business on social media before getting some shut-eye.

GET SOME EXERCISE! though it may not sound like it has a connection to a restful night’s sleep, getting enough physical activity in your daily routine will help enhance the quality of your sleep. in the morning, the temperature of the human body is elevated, while the temperature decreases at night, signaling sleepiness. try to clock in some physical activity 5-6 hours before bedtime if possible – at least 20-30 minutes of exercise is fine. aside from helping you sleep better, you’re investing in your overall wellness, too!

MAKE SURE YOUR BED IS COMFY. if you find yourself twisting and turning in bed at night and wake up with sore muscles, maybe the problem lies in your pillow or your mattress. replace old mattresses and pillows with new ones – most mattresses are due for replacement after about 10 years, and pillows after a year. be sure to select a mattress or pillow that provides the right kind of support you need to help you achieve optimal sleep.

these are three simple ways you can improve your sleeping habits at home. when you get more hours of sleep, you’ll definitely find that getting up in the morning becomes easier, your ability to concentrate becomes better, and you won’t feel so groggy and sluggish in the mid-afternoon and will feel better and healthier all around.

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Simple Yoga for Beginners

For those of you who haven’t been bitten by the yoga bug, you may be wondering why your friends are so crazy about it. More than just mastering your physical strength and flexibility, yoga is a spiritual practice that dates back more than thousands of years that is meant to provide you with a meaningful spiritual as well as physical experience. The word itself means “union,” which connotes a union between body and soul, because yoga also aids in meditation via breathing exercises.  If you’re interested to know what yoga is all about, why not try these simple yoga poses, or asanas, to get your practice started? Just remember that if the poses start to hurt, don’t force them. Yoga is supposed to be an enjoyable activity, and you’ll get better with practice.

The Sun Salutation, or Surya Namaskara, is one of the most basic series of yoga poses you can do even without leaving your home.

Sun Salutation

  1. Stand up straight with both feet touching. Bring your hands together, palm to palm, directly in front of your heart like you are praying. Making sure you are relaxed and your weight is evenly distributed, exhale.
  2. Slowly raise your arms above your head and bend backwards slowly. Make sure to relax your neck. Inhale.
  3. Bend forward slowly and exhale, aligning your hands to your feet. Try to touch your head to your knees, if possible. Try to touch the floor, palms down with fingers aligned to the toes. Bend your knees if you need to.
  4.  Move your right leg backwards in a lunge motion. Keep your feet and hands on the ground as you inhale, making sure your left foot is in between your hands then raise your head.
  5. Bring your left foot together with the right foot in a plank position.
  6. Lower your body slowly as you exhale, and rest on your forearms.
  7. Inhale, and lower your pelvis to the ground and raise your head while bending back as far as possible, while keeping your arms straight. This is called the Upward Facing Dog Pose.
  8. Put your hands on the ground. While keeping your arms straight, raise your hips and exhale. This is called the Downward Facing Dog Pose.
  9. Inhale slowly and bring your right foot forward in between your hands and lift your head up.
  10. While keeping your hands in place, bring both feet together. Straighten your legs and bend your waist and keep your upper body lowered. Try to touch your head to your knees, if possible. Exhale.
  11. Slowly rise up to a standing position and raise your hands over your head as you bend slowly backwards. Inhale.
  12. Return to step 1. Exhale.

Yoga is a simple and uplifting experience that benefits your spiritually as well as physically. Why not try doing these exercises when you have some free time? Your body will thank you for it.

bobble is available at your local yoga studios – Bliss Yoga, Plana Forma, and Urban Ashram.

Six Tips on Having a Simple, Awesome Road Trip

It’s summer time, and what better way to celebrate the perfect weather than with a road trip to the beach or the mountains? Planning a road trip away from Manila is one of the ways to have a refreshing dose of R and R with the people you love the most, whether family, classmates, colleagues or friends. But before you step into the car or bus and take off to your next destination, make sure you keep the following tips in mind:

  1. Do your research. If you put in the right amount of effort to do some research on where you’ll be staying, determining the cost of basic necessities,  transportation (whether or not you’re commuting by bus or taking a car) and other important factors to consider on a road trip. Luckily, most of the information you’ll need is available on the Internet, as many resorts have their own websites or are listed on hotel rating websites, so you can see what other people have to say about them.
  2. Always prepare a budget and stick to it. Having an idea of how much you intend to spend on your road trip will be able to help you greatly on your road trip by spending smarter. It also helps to bring a little extra just to cover emergency expenses on your road trip.
  3. Choose your traveling companions wisely. You’ll be spending a lot of time with these people on your road trip, and understanding how they are when they travel will be a big factor in determining the flow of your trip. It might be difficult to travel with someone who wants to do all the touristy things at a destination as opposed to someone who requires a lot of down time. When you figure out who is the best fit for you to travel with, you’ll definitely have more fun.
  4. Be open-minded. When you go on your road trip, be prepared to expect the unexpected. From pleasant experiences to sudden emergencies, be ready to meet new people and learn about the culture or to deal with a sudden stomach flu or other inconveniences like that. The more prepared you are, mentally and physically, the better off your road trip will be.
  5. Have fun. At the heart of it all, the most important part of having a simple and awesome road trip is to have fun. Keep an open mind and cast all your worries away because you are looking forward to having a great time wherever it is you’re going to go.
  6. Bring a reusable bottle with you. Stay well-hydrated by carrying a reusable water bottle like bobble™ (www.facebook.com/bobblePH). It’s eco-friendly and stylish, at the same time.