The Golden Rules of Sleeping Like a Champion
1) Plan on adequate duration.
The National Sleep Foundation revised their sleep duration recommendations in 2015. This is the best advice we can suggest today. However, it should be noted that these numbers were not specifically scientifically determined. They are the peer reviewed recommendations of several medical experts and institutions. More information can be found at: https://sleepfoundation.org/
2) Plan your sleep time.
If you have to be awake by a certain time and your sleep duration is defined then you have a time you must be asleep by. Make sure you're in bed and ready for sleep 10 minutes before this time so you don't loose any of those precious ZZZs.
3) No alcohol or stimulants such as caffeine or nicotine for 6 hours before your sleep time.
Alcohol will sometimes help the onset of sleep but interrupts your sleep cycles. Expect to receive effective rest only in the latter part of your sleep. If you have trouble falling asleep consider using a small dose of melatonin (available OTC from any drug store / pharmacy).
Stimulants will prevent onset of sleep and will interrupt sleep cycles. Sometimes this is unavoidable. Understand the impact and set your recovery expectations accordingly. Don't expect use of a depressant to combat the effect of stimulants to be effective.
4) Prepare your room. is it cool & dark & quiet?
You always prepare your kitchen and dining room for use. Do the same for your bedroom and get it ready for a successful log-sawing session.
5) No screen time within 1/2 hour of target time.
Nothing upsets your internal mental processes quite like tv / phone / tablet / PC screens. Allow your brain some time to adjust from ultra-stimulated to normal before attempting sleep.
There are plenty of studies suggesting blue light from devices interrupt sleep cycles.
6) Be in bed 10 minutes before your target time.
Don't plan your journey and wind up running to catch the bus. Duration matters. Don't eat into it through a lapse in execution of your plan.
7) Grade your sleep quality and make adjustments until you effect change.
Use of sleep supplements
Sleep aids can have unexpected results from grogginess upon rising to interrupted sleep.
Valerian root is a cheap OTC herbal supplement which some people find effective. Some find it to give unexpected results such as night terrors or disturbing / vivid dreams. Try it. If you like it - great. If you don't then ditch it. It's cheap and available in any drug store or pharmacy.
CBD oil has been reported to be a very effective sleep aid in various populations. Our Parkinson's community find great efficacy for sleep and other Parkinson's related symptoms. Jase uses Green Roads CBD which has been extensively third-party tested and finds it extremely effective in terms of low grogginess and restfulness and it is 0% THC so it will not trigger a false negative result on a drug test (see the Deathproof Vlog YouTube channel for a video on our drug test experiment). Others have reported no change. It's expensive but worth trying to see if it's right for you. It's available at the gym behind the counter in several forms.