Monday, October 20, 2008

Sleepless in Suzhou

Warning: this is a post full of whining so if you’re not into that sort of thing you should stop reading now!

Two things that have bothered me lately:

1. I cannot sleep

2. I am utterly out of shape.

OK, so starting with the sleeping problem. I actually have no good explanation to why? I just haven’t slept well for the last month. First I figured it was because of my flu and all that coughing but now my health is back to normal and I still sleep very badly. Waking up all the time, not being able to fall asleep/fall back to sleep. My face is just getting more and more swollen by the day, not to mention the sexy dark circles under my eyes… but then during the days I don’t feel tired at all (so I can't take a nap), I just look as if I have been up partying straight for 4 nights… Any sleeping tips, beyond the obvious (such as go for a walk/run during the day, drink hot milk before u go to bed –the latter has never worked for me because 1. Then I just wake up because I have to go to the loo and 2. Hot milk? Yuk!) ? I am not into pills and that sort of stuff… I just wanna get a good night’s sleep (and not look like a zombie)

The Hangzhou marathon is in less than 20 days. I am so nervous/stressed/depressed about this that I don’t know where to start. I was doing SOOOO WELL… I had a great fitness going on, ran for 2 hours without feeling tired but then came the flu (times 2) and now I am back on a very primary and boring level of running.

Since it was too humid for running outside yesterday I took my running shoes to the gym and decided to have an easy 10 km treadmill run… or so I though. As a matter of fact, it was the most boring and hard run I've done in a long time (first one since being recovered from the flu). Five km was OK, then I started to feel kind of heavy, not to mention bored… (It didn’t help either that the gym had turned off the air con… it being October and everything. The only ‘cooling devices’ I had was a lame spinning fan and an open window –which I believe worked against me- ) After 7.5 km I felt as if my head was about to explode so I jumped off the treadmill and went to the bathroom to curse and wash my face. Then back to the treadmill, like a stubborn kid, forcing myself to run another 1.5 km… oh man, how can it be so HARD?! Ten km is normally a leisure jog for me, but now I can’t even do it anymore.

So… this fact leads me on to wondering… Hangzhou half marathon on Nov 8 (or 9?)… Is that maybe a little bit… too much?! There’s also a ‘health race’ that’s something like 13 km and since I still haven’t signed up I guess I could always choose that.. although it feels like a bit of a failure to run a ‘health race’ instead of a half marathon I have to say. And if feels like a bit of a waste to go all the way to Hangzhou to do it (although I am going, regardless of what race I run.. I have booked a hotel since long back so it is too late to cancel completely).

Like I said in the beginning of this post: this is more of a selfish/pathetic rant if anything else. But sometimes I have to post those too. This tired/lame legged blogger needs some sleep!


Anonymous said...

Jonna - Sorry to hear you don't sleep well. I had a similar prob a few years ago. It was driving me nuts, no matter how hard I tried to improve it! My advise is to simply relax and do not think about it. It will improve eventually. Exercising can help, but it seems you do not need that! Jeez, I'd be dead if I try run 10 km! :)

Vampire Rabbit said...

he two are probably related, if you work out more, you will tire more and sleep better.

Anonymous said...

Hi Jonna,
Sleeping problems - I dont know if this will help, but i too have sleeping problems and when u dont sleep according to the chinese it will produce alot of "hot air " in ur body. which will result to even more sleepless nights. What i do when this happens is drink ginseng.
I usually buy it in bottled form from 7-11.

Anonymous said...

Drink Ginseng, you have too much "hot air" in your body.
it happens when u don't sleep well.

Rambler said...

1. I agree. Hot milk tastes horrible. I've never understood how people can drink it.

2. Maybe it's the lack of exercise that has made it harder to sleep. Hopefully you'll be able to sleep better once you readjust to the gym.

3. When I have trouble sleeping I do two things. First I put on some music. Not sure if you can do that in your case. Second, try relaxing your body one part at a time. I mean, individual toes and everything. If you can do it right, you'll be asleep before you even reach your arms.

Jonna Wibelius said...

Thanks so much for the help/advices people, I really appreciate it. I have never heard of ginseng helping to putting people to sleep/reduce 'hot air' in the body (?) but I will definitely try it tonight. Only one thing... where do U get it from? Bottled? Is it mixed with something? Available from convenience stores? (Not a ginseng girl as u can hear)

I was also hoping that since I started exercising last week I would sleep better but nope.. so far, no improvment. Although I have only worked out one week. When it comes to sleep it is hard to be patient, though.

Anonymous said...

ginseng has many benefits, I forgot to mention better to drink it during the day, not at night. It will give you energy and remove heat.
If u can't find bottled versions in stores, u can also try super markets. or make your own, buy the thinly sliced ginseng from stores and just boil it with water. if u dont like the taste wait for it to cool down then add honey. if u add honey while its' still hot, it will produce more "hot air", which u dont need.

Rambler said...

Hmm. I usually see ginseng in energy drinks.

Anonymous said...

You are full of energy from not training for a long time, so I guess you need to step up the training. Eventually you will be more tired and fall asleep easier. And do the half marathon, just take it slow in the start, and then feel about the specific form that day. It is way better to at least try to do the 21k then go all chicken and do some lame health race with a lot of old grannies.

Eat just before you go to bed, after you eat you usually feel tired. Maybe that will help? Or maybe buy a new pillow. A new pillow made wonders for me some time ago, I dident know how bad my sleep was before I bought a new one.

Anonymous said...

I think you should sleep a litte bit earlier than usual and stop bar crawl at night.

When your internal biology clock come back in tune, all will be fine.

Anonymous said...

maybe you're just worrying too much about everything (e.g. losing shape) and your mind keeps you awake. try to sort out your matters.

Anonymous said...

A hot sex can always put me into a good sleep. Maybe your boyfriend is not working hard enough?

Jonna Wibelius said...

Emil -If I eat before I go to sleep I'll never be able to sleep... food makes me energetic. I guess I just have to give the training some more time. The pillow thing might be worth trying though.

Anonyous2 -I'm not pub crawling on weekdays. In fact, I don't even go out that often in general (sadly enough) as Suzhou's nightlife doesn't tempt me, at all.

Janosh -yeah I have been thinking that it must be because I am worring too much about things.. So now I am sorting out everything around me, but to be honest.. nah, I don't really worry about not being in shape, that is more like frustrating. Nothing that should be able to keep me up all night worrying about? It has never before, anyways.