Wellbeing Wednesday: Surviving Daylight Savings Time

At this point, I firmly believe most Americans on the East Coast, Mid-West, and even the South, would do just about anything to make Spring arrive sooner. The idea if warmer temps, longer days, and just general reawakening is enough to forget even the most miserable parts of Spring.

Cue, Daylight Savings Time.

DST has a storied history that at one point involved localities to determine on their own when and if they participated. Could you imagine the city of Boston just deciding one day to turn clocks forward but New York didn’t?!

But I digress. In theory, DST is fantastic. It means you’ve suddenly got more daylight hours at the end of the day, meaning no more dark runs for those 5:30 PM run groups, or your kids can start having soccer practice outside after school (right after all the snow and ice melts, of course). It feels like you’ve gained hours in the day.

Untrue. For their anniversary, Jay-Z purchased her an additional 6 hours in each day.

No matter how amazing it seems to have that extra hour of daylight each evening, nothing changes the fact that it means, at least for a while, you lose that out of the morning. There isn’t suddenly more daylight, it’s being stolen from your morning. So if you’re a morning runner, don’t put that reflective gear away too fast, if anything, stock back up on it.

And if you have a hard time getting out of bed now, imagine how you’ll feel on Monday, when your body thinks its only 4 am when your 5 am alarm goes off? Basically, you’ve got a week or so of living in zombie-ville until your body realizes what time is actually is.

So how do you survive?
1) Pace yourself. If you find you have a hard time getting up try setting your alarm 10 minutes earlier each day, to gradually get yourself up at the right time.

2) Turn it off. Force yourself to turn off your screens earlier at night. It will help you unwind and be ready to sleep earlier.

3) Get sweaty. Even though you might not be a morning workout person, you may find a sweat session before the sun comes up makes you feel more awake. I’m not saying you won’t need coffee, I’m just saying, it will help.

3) Hydrate. Proper hydration will help your body adjust to new rhythms, and keep it feeling more refreshed. Again, I’m not saying don’t drink coffee, but I am saying don’t only drink coffee.

4) Get busy. Nope, not like that. But take advantage of the extra evening light, and do something! Join a running group, pick up a cross-training class, go for a family bike ride or walk after dinner, or simply sit outside and catch up on your favorite blogs. Just do something with those daylight hours. They’ll be there regardless.

5) Eat all the carbs. WebMD, the penultimate source of medical information (insert sarcastic eye roll here), suggests that carbohydrates make it easier to fall asleep. So go ahead and have that bread with dinner, just be sure to offset it with a run in the morning, otherwise, you’re working against time to race & bathing suit season.

Does the time change usually bother you?
What’s your best time change advice?
Are you a morning, mid-day or evening runner?

7 thoughts on “Wellbeing Wednesday: Surviving Daylight Savings Time

  1. kristenk

    Love this! I always forget about DST but I really love it in the fall since I get an extra hour of sleep 🙂 I hate losing an hour in the spring and waking up when it’s dark out! I am definitely going to need extra coffee next week!


    I think the change is going to be WAY different for me this year! It seems as though the change is more aggressive in the north compared to the south. I mean honestly…the frickin' sun comes up at 5am in the summer here. We'll see.

  3. ranchcookie

    In all honesty I never even notice the time change haha, good thing my phone adjusts it for me or I would be clueless!

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