As clocks go back this weekend, an hour gained is not something to be squandered. And though the end of British Summer Time marks the beginning of our diminished daylight, we at Form have plenty of ideas as to how you can start this new period of the year as you mean to go on.
So, when the clock strikes 2 am on Sunday and we gain back the hour we lost earlier in the year, consider these healthy ways to capitalise on the gift of time.
Sleep expert Matthew Walker refers to these annual time shifts as a sort of “global experiment”, the results of which reinforce just how important our slumber is.
Each year, when we lose an hour of sleep to the time shift, hospitals report a significant surge in heart attack visits and road accidents. Thankfully, the reverse is true when we gain an hour – showing just how sensitive our bodies are to changing schedules.
Every day starts with a good night’s sleep, so why wouldn’t you use your additional hour in the day to capitalise on your shuteye? Consider reaping those benefits further still by popping a ZZZZs capsule before bed on Saturday night.
For those who struggle to find the time to prep their healthy snacking for the week ahead (and consequently succumb to sugary or fatty alternatives), now’s a better time than any to get ahead of the game.
You’ll probably even find you have time left over to share your creations on Instagram…
One of the main reasons people discount meditation from their daily routines is for lack of time. Now that you have an extra hour in the day, there are no excuses.
Finding the time to train your mind to focus and redirect your thoughts has been scientifically linked to all sorts of wellbeing boons, including increased attention span and reduced anxiety to aid your work performance in the week that follows.
Free resources such as Insight Timer and Yoga Nidra offer meditations of an hour-long, but you needn’t begin with such a lengthy practice. We recommend working up from 10 to 15 minutes in order to get things moving in the right direction.
On the other side of the coin, if an extra hour in the day means little to your own personal wellbeing, why not dedicate it to someone more in need?
Websites such as do-it.org feature a database of volunteering opportunities across the UK so that you can source fulfilling work close to both your heart and your geography.
Like meditation, volunteering has been linked to all sorts of benefits for body and mind, including a mood boost that’s particularly valuable coming into the months where seasonal affective disorder will take hold.
Whether you see it as an extra hour of doing what you love, or an extra hour to squeeze in the exercise you love putting off, 60 minutes is ample time to fit in a Sunday workout.
Yoga, Pilates, spin, HIIT or boxing – unless you reside somewhere particularly remote, we’ll bet there’s an hour-long group class near you with availability this weekend. Now’s the time to give it a try.