We’ve all been there.
You have a commitment just on the other side of sunrise and go to bed early because you need to be up early. But, surprisingly, despite the 10 hours of sleep, you find yourself feeling more tired.
Well, new research shows you might be doing it wrong.
Sleeping more won’t necessarily leave you feeling more refreshed in the office the next day — because, well, it’s complicated.
Luckily for us, someone has created a ‘sleep calculator’, being used on blinds company site web-blinds.com, so we can work out when we need to hit the sack in the click of a button.
A healthy night of sleep is completed in cycles rather than hours. If you wake up at the wrong time during a sleep cycle, you’ll find yourself more tired – regardless how long you’ve been asleep.
Need to make sure you’re awake and getting out of bed at 7am? Then you need to go to bed at either 9:46pm or 11:16pm.
If you’re having a late night and you don’t fancy either of these, then 12:46am and 2:16am will also work.
The sleep calculator factors in the average of 14 minutes it takes people to naturally fall asleep, so you don’t necessarily need to be in bed by this time.
To get up at 6am, you’re looking at a bedtime of 8:46pm, 10:16pm or even 11:46pm or – if you’re feeling like a real night owl – 1:16am.
Don’t need to get up super early to get to work on time? Have no fear. Here’s what time you need to go to bed for an 8am rise: 10:46pm, 12:16am, 1:46am or 3:16am.
What are sleep cycles?
One sleep cycle lasts about 90 minutes, and includes five stages of sleep – four stages of non-rapid eye movement (NREM) sleep and one stage of rapid eye movement (REM) sleep.
We move from light sleep in Stage 1 to a very deep sleep in Stage 4. It is difficult to wake someone in Stage 4 of a sleep cycle, which is why you might feel more groggy if you wake up during this stage.
The fifth stage, REM sleep, is when most dreaming occurs.
Precise Wakeup Times
For example, if you know getting out of bed at 6:35 is the optimum time so you can not miss the train and be punctual for work, enter it into the sleep calculator and you’ll get a result.
For a 6:35am rise time, go to bed at 9:21pm, 10:51pm, 12:21am or 1:51am.
According to the Sleep Calculator website, “getting a good night’s sleep is about more than simply going to bed early – it’s about waking up at the right time too. Using a formula based on the body’s natural rhythms, the Sleep Calculator will work out the best time for you to rise or go to sleep.”
The calculator works on the principle that everyone sleeps in about five or six cycles which last roughly 90 minutes.
Waking up midway through a cycle can leave you feeling grumpy the next day. The idea is to wake up in between cycles and feel refreshed in the morning.
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