Health Magazine

A Quick And Easy Way To Improve Sleep

By Gjosefsberg @gjosefsberg
Mason sleeping with his butt in the air

Maybe I should have tried this posture

I usually sleep on my side. It helps me snore less (which my wife appreciates) and helps combat my sleep apnea. Unfortunately, I’ve been having trouble sleeping for the past few months due to pains in my hip bone. No matter which side I slept on, after 30 or 45 minutes, the hip bone on that side started feeling painful and that pain wouldn’t go away for hours. 3 hours into the night, both sides were hurting and I was having trouble sleeping.  So I started experimenting.

  • When did I feel the pain?
  • What did I do the day before?
  • Were there any days where I didn’t feel this pain?
  • What was different about these days?
  • When did the pain start?
  • When did it go away?

Basically, all the analysis that I put into things like “when did I get fat?” now went into figuring out why I wasn’t sleeping well.  The end result was a little surprising.

The Problem Was Right There, Staring My In The Butt

Initially, I thought it was the running and walking that was causing these pains.  I’ve been running and walking a lot more this year as I train for a marathon and commute to work.  I tried to cut back on the amount of running I did but it didn’t seem to help.  The pain remained, even on weeks where I wasn’t running that much.  The actual breakthrough came during our last vacation when I noticed that the pain had gone away about three days into the vacation.  This was odd because we were actually doing quite a bit of walking and running during our vacation.  Then we spent a day driving from Charleston to Savannah and the pain came back.

What I ended up noticing is that my sides hurt after days in which I spent hours and hours sitting down.  This made a lot of sense since I switched jobs this year.  I’m now running a whole team of people and a suite of products.  That means way more hours in a chair without the hourly breaks I would do before.  I’m also working on my own little start up which means even the weekends were being spent in front of a computer.  So I experimented a bit…

Test Test Test

I spent some days taking hourly breaks and some days sitting down for the whole day.  The results were consistent.  Sitting made my entire body stiff and that in turn caused the aches in my hip bones that I was feeling.  Taking hourly breaks prevented that.  In fact, I found that a 20 minute walk every two hours was enough to have me sleeping like a baby!  Oh, and exercise had nothing to do with it.  Even running days didn’t cause the pain, it was definitely the hours in the chair.


  • Being sedantary is bad – If you have an office job, make sure you take breaks with some kind of physical activity.
  • When in doubt, analyze and test – People are willing to accept all sorts of things without even thinking about them.  When I told a friend about these side aches, their response was “well, maybe you’re just getting old”.  Screw that!  things don’t just happen.  There are causes when you look for them and ways to prevent them if you try hard enough.  A bit of critical thinking is key and can help you improve your health in ways you never even imagined.

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