Healthcare 101: Healthy Ways to Take Advantage of Daylight Savings Time

daylight savings exercise early

There are many reasons to enjoy Daylight Savings time—the best of which may be the ability to get more done while also enjoying some sunshine! As time springs forward and we suddenly have more time in the evening before sunset, many people feel motivated to get outside, get active, and even become more social.

This spring, ask yourself how Daylight Savings time can help you not only get healthier, but also increase your productivity!

Get a Head Start

If you enjoy getting a head start on the day, you can use Daylight Savings to find an extra dose of time for yourself. Grab a coffee and watch the sunrise, go for an early morning walk, or try starting a meditation routine. All are ways to gently prepare the mind and body for a calm and productive day.

Improve Your Sleep Schedule

You can also work on getting your sleep schedule more aligned with the natural hours of light and darkness. Set your alarm to get up early in the day, and use the time to invest in your own physical and mental needs. Taking an exercise class or scheduling a training session during the early hours can force a necessary reset for those who have become accustomed to staying up past midnight. Shifting your day to align more closely to natural rhythms of sunlight and darkness can improve the quality of your sleep and increase your productivity throughout the day.

Use Another Hour of Light

At first, getting up when it's still a little dark outside may not sound all that attractive. However, having that extra hour of daylight after work may make you a bigger fan of the Daylight Savings time change. Spend the time enjoying a walk in the neighborhood, meet friends for a light bite outdoors, or simply immerse yourself in nature for some rejuvenation. Take the time to get some Vitamin D naturally when outside and potentially improve the strength of your body’s immune system.

Being more productive during the day -- and starting a new fitness regimen early in the day -- can provide a boost of energy and help you feel better. With this boost you can accomplish more in the evening so you can also start winding down earlier. Relaxing with a book or dimming the lights are both great ways to help you adjust to the time change. Avoiding caffeinated drinks after noon can also help make it easier to fall asleep at night even though your body is accustomed to nightfall arriving later.

Make It Easy to Change

Anytime you're preparing for a Daylight Savings Time change, you can experience minimal discomfort from getting up “earlier” by going to bed 15 minutes before your usual bedtime a few nights prior to the change. Then you can up early on Sunday morning, and start the day with exercise and some morning daylight exposure. 

If you're having trouble with continued sleep debt or unusual sleeping patterns, you can speak with a CareSpot healthcare professional to address potential causes, as poor quality sleep can reduce productivity and negatively impact your immune system function.