Spring is rapidly approaching and, with it, those longer days of sunshine! With the exception of Hawaii, a large majority of Arizona, and a handful of U.S. territories like Puerto Rico and Guam, the clock will shift forward by one hour this Sunday, March 8th.
With more daylight, you can do a lot more with your evening hours. To enjoy that benefit, you’ll have to exchange your crisp blue morning for a darker one. Here are some tips for how to adjust to the darker morning, and how to make the most of your longer evening.
Your Sleep Schedule
Your sleep schedule is getting thrown off again, when it seems you’ve only just gotten used to the new routine. Your circadian rhythm regulates your alertness or sleepiness, and it accomplishes this by assessing the light levels in your environment. Because your mornings will now be darker, you may notice greater difficulty with waking up. You might also have more trouble getting sleepy as your usual bedtime approaches because it won’t get dark until later.
Turn on some lights when your alarm goes off in the morning to help you feel more awake and be mindful of the time in the evening so you can give yourself time to wind down before bed.
Take Advantage of the Extra Evening Light
The best thing about extra light in the evening, is that you can actually tackle your to-do list. With the extra daylight, these items no longer have to wait for the weekend.
- Clean Out the Rain Gutters: If you have your own house, you’ve probably needed to clean these out at some point. You probably also know how dangerous it can be to do this job while it’s dark. Use your judgment to determine whether it’s best do this before or after the April showers.
- Do Some Gardening: Unless you really love nighttime critters, it’s a good idea to do your gardening in the daytime. You’ll have a better sense of the bigger picture you’re creating and also better gauge color and plant sizes.
- Food Prep: Sometimes we just can’t get to this on the weekends. A little extra daylight can help give you that boost of energy you need to tackle this one on a weeknight!
- Laundry: Mid-week laundry sessions can help you make up for the times you’ve let things pile up. Just like with food prep, the extra light can keep you energized during this monotonous chore.
- Get Dusting: Natural light can help you see where the dust has been collecting. Take the opportunity to wipe off dusty surfaces and sweep or mop the floors. With allergy season looming, you’ll be glad you did!
Add More Fresh Air to Your Week
Your to-do list isn’t the only thing that can benefit from extra daylight. You can finally enjoy the outdoors again as the weather warms. Here are some ways to add a little more fresh air to your week.
- Go for a Jog, a Walk, or a Cycling Session: Not only is it safer to do this in daylight, it’s also a perfect time for evening exercise. Once summer weather arrives, the day’s heat can make evening workouts far less enjoyable. If you’re accustomed to early morning exercise, make sure you wear bright, reflective clothing because the darker morning will make you less visible.
- Go Out to Watch the Sunset: After a long day, you’ll actually have time to make it out to a good spot to catch the sunset. Don’t waste that opportunity!
- Enjoy Your Dinner Outside: If you live in a part of the country that’s already serving up picnic weather, take your dinner outdoors and banish those wintertime blues.
- Build Something: It’s not fun when you’re sanding, painting, or staining your project in artificial light and later realize it looks nothing like what you expected. Use your precious daylight to work on projects that need a bit of extra care.
- Pause for Playtime: Take your pet to the park or give them some much deserved love and attention at home! Or, enjoy some time with friends or family that isn’t focused on homework or chores.
How will you use your extra daylight? Share your thoughts in the comments below! Stay in-the-know on trending health and nutrition topics and subscribe to our newsletter to receive monthly highlights from the Living Healthy Blog!