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The Guardian: From The Cardiologist To The Baker

February 11th, 2019

guardian19aFrom the cardiologist to the baker: how busy people manage sleep

Today presenter Martha Kearney goes to bed at 8pm, while at 4am Toyah Willcox is going through her emails – 10 people with odd work patterns reveal their bedtime routines

Toyah Willcox, Singer and Actor

I have always had disrupted, broken sleep. Over a year, I could count on my fingers the times I have slept through the night. I don’t think my insomnia is fixable: I think it’s in my DNA. I cannot emphasise enough how important exercise is. I have to do at least a three-mile fast walk a day, usually in the afternoon. Movement is incredibly important in helping my body use up my energy. When I’m disciplined enough, detoxing of stimulants and exercising is also a conscious part of my day.

Routine: I take books on learning to bed – music theory, colour theory – and usually my brain thinks, “Um, I think I’d rather turn off,” than learn something. But my natural pattern is to sleep from 11pm-1am, then I’m awake till 7am and I only get into deep sleep at around 7-10am. Instead of lying there praying to go to sleep all night, I get up and work. At 4am you do feel a bit jet-lagged and brain-dead, but it’s a very practical time to go through my emails, pay the bills, get rid of the mundane tasks. And there’s times in the summer when I’m awake as the sun is rising and I think this is the best, this is absolutely wonderful. Of course, if you have a 9-5 job this is a real problem, but as a singer, it can work well for me.

• Continue reading at The Guardian.

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