finding my own circadian rhythm

March 27, 2011 § Leave a comment

This week I set out simply to get up and see seven sunrises in a row as a change of pace from my normal routine of sleeping as late as I can get away with. Per usual with this project, it got me thinking about a lot of other things like whether I could become a morning person and whether I’m getting a good night’s sleep.

I still don’t know that I’m a morning person but I know I would like to continue getting up some mornings to catch the sunrise. Boulder is a beautiful place and sunrise is arguably the most beautiful time of day to enjoy it. It’s quiet and peaceful. You have time with your own thoughts. As cheesy as it sounds it’s like you’re waking up with nature vs an “alarm”. There’s just something about it that makes the rest of your day feel manageable waking up that way. It reminds me of living in LA and driving home along the beach watching the sun set over the ocean. It puts your day in perspective and reminds you no matter how hectic the day can often be, there’s a pace that transcends it.

Getting up early for a week forced me to examine some of my sleeping habits that I normally don’t really pay a lot of attention to. I realized I wasn’t really getting a good night’s sleep. I learned a few things that I’ll keep doing to sleep better and therefore wake up feeling more rested.
1) relax before bedtime – no more web surfing, texting, stressful TV shows right up until bedtime. Instead bath time and reading. I’m excited about the new world of bath products I’ll get to explore!
2) no alcohol right before bedtime but rather a glass of wine earlier in the evening. (of course this doesn’t count nights out with friends)
3) no TV, iPad, mac or iPhones in the bedroom.
4) try not to wake up to an alarm clock or repetitive snoozing in the morning but rather the morning light & sounds. It’s really not that hard to do. (of course have a backup)

Some people say it’s good to have a set bedtime and wake up time each day. I’m not someone who likes having a regimented schedule like that, but I do think after this week, I’ll get better sleep and naturally wake up to enjoy some beautiful sunrises.

the golden hour

March 24, 2011 § 1 Comment

Sunrise on the Hills
– Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

I stood upon the hills,¬†when heaven’s wide arch
Was glorious with the sun’s returning march,
And woods were brightened, and soft gales
Went forth to kiss the sun-clad vales.
The clouds were far beneath me; bathed in light,
They gathered mid-way round the wooded height,
And, in their fading glory, shone
Like hosts in battle overthrown.
As many a pinnacle, with shifting glance.
Through the gray mist thrust up its shattered lance,
And rocking on the cliff was left
The dark pine blasted, bare, and cleft.
The veil of cloud was lifted, and below
Glowed the rich valley, and the river’s flow
Was darkened by the forest’s shade,
Or glistened in the white cascade;
Where upward, in the mellow blush of day,
The noisy bittern wheeled his spiral way.
If thou art worn and hard beset
With sorrows, that thou wouldst forget,
If thou wouldst read a lesson, that will keep
Thy heart from fainting and thy soul from sleep,
Go to the woods and hills!
No tears
Dim the sweet look that Nature wears

could I become a morning person?

March 21, 2011 § 3 Comments

I’ve never been much of a morning person. Especially in the last few months I’ve been freelancing from Boulder, I’ve become even less so. It’s so nice to work from home and not have to get up and go into the office. I also like that I now get to sleep in later than my husband. I used to be the one to get us up. It’s kind of luxurious. Everyone has told us that will all change when we have kids, but for now I’ve been milking it.

This week I thought it would be fun to test out whether I could get up and get going before sunrise for seven days straight. I also have some food & wine to work off from last week. This morning when the alarm went off at 6:00 I was tempted to shut it off and just do my backup plan for the week, but I got up while it was still dark out. I know 6:00 isn’t that early but I usually get up around 8:00, so it’s definitely much earlier for me.

I drove over to Wonderland Lake for an easy stroll around the lake. It was pretty stunning with the moon still out over the mountains and the sunrise opposite.

I was pretty proud of myself to be the first person out on the trail which is saying a lot in Boulder. It was so quiet when I started out and slowly all sorts of birds started chirping. It really makes it feel like Spring is here. It didn’t take long to see people out running and traversing the mountain paths but it was still really peaceful.

Another nice aspect of being up that early is seeing the wildlife. I got to see a couple of deer having a morning drink in the pond. Luckily I saw no mountain lions.

It’s a pretty nice feeling to be up and outside before the world wakes up. It’s also a beautiful time of day to see Boulder.

If anyone has any favorite spots in the area to check out, let me know. I’d love to check them out.

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