How to Use the Data from Your Sleep Tracker. If you happen to have used a sleep tracker or a fitness tracker in the last few years you should know how all-encompassing the data the device on your wrist can be.
From blood-oxygen levels to calories and activity tracking, there is a great amount of data collected while you are awake and moving, and just as much during sleep tracking.
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How to Use the Data from Your Sleep Tracker
Whether it is the duration of your sleep, the various stages of sleep, and the timings of each, or you attempt to diagnose the conditions like sleep apnea, there is a lot that you need to get into but it can be tough to do so; what patterns do you need to search for?
What is to be considered a “normal” sleep cycle? These questions, and plenty more, would want to make it tricky for you to interpret, especially for beginners. Here I would be showing you how to make use of sleep trackers to inform life choices.
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How to Find Your Data
First thing’s first, and that’s finding data to start with. If you are making use of the devices like Fitbit device, you would find everything within the Fitbit app, with a dashboard of sorts showing some great metrics. Simply find the sleep section and you’ll be able to see all of the data that have been collected while your body relaxes. The same applies to any fitness tracker tied directly into an app.
Apple watches now get a bit different because Apple sends everything to the health app found on their iPhone. Here, you would see the data on your three rings, but pressing “Browse” at the bottom left would let flick through every category. Then you would just need to hit the “Sleep” option in other to get a look at your sleep data.
Identifying the Variables
Whichever device that you are making use of, there’s some input required from the user to find the major difference between days. For instance, maybe you might drink an extra coffee one day, or exercise for twice as long.
These kinds of things need to be logged and form different “variables” that can be used to assess the impact they have on sleep. Here are a few of the different variables to consider:
Sleep Location and Conditions
It seems like an obvious thing to consider, but where you sleep would affect how you sleep. If the temperature in your room is too hot or too cold, you’ll see an effect on your sleep.
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Fitness and Activity
Fitness trackers, as the name suggests, do a great job of tracking your activity throughout the day. Whether that’s a run, weight-lifting session, or particularly long stroll, these things naturally impact your body’s rest periods and how much sleep you would get.
If run a marathon, you can reasonably expect to sleep particularly well, versus the day after where you are likely to be resting a lot more. The same goes for any activity – your muscles will fatigue, and you would need rest. If you are having problems consistently, it may be that you would need to exercise more regularly, or perhaps less, if you find yourself aching.
Diet is quite essential not just to sleep, but for the general well-being – eating too much of the wrong things can cause lethargy, while not eating enough can offer you your day grinding to a halt as you struggle for focus and energy.
In today’s always-online world, spending tons of time on your computer is a lot harder than ever, and even if you do, nothing is wrong with unwinding with some television.
Thankfully there are some tools on those that you can use in keeping track of how much screen-on time you have in a given day. Apple makes use of its very own screen-time tracker, but both iOS and Android have a wealth of third-party options.
All the is stated above would offer you variables, and then you would need to compare it to the data points that were collected by your sleep tracker.
A late coffer might mean it takes much longer for your body to relax, or a long day at work might see you struggle to shut off. A particularly heavy workout might cause you to even fall asleep a lot sooner, while you might be surprised by just how much your partner snores.
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Some apps would actually interest much of the raw data for you to assist you in making a positive change going forward. As an example, Fitbit premium would take into account your activity, rest, sleep, and more to form a “Daily Readiness score”. If this is lower than the day before, the app would suggest that the users should maybe take it a bit easier to recharge their internal batteries.
While you would need to do some legwork, the process of identifying variables and the effect they have on sleep on sleep can be not just helpful, but also rewarding too.
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