Insomnia and Half Ski Days

This month has been a little crazy. But here’s your catch-up.


The first thing that happened this month is that I got sick. The kind of sick where you are sick enough to hate your life, but not sick enough to really stay home from work, which I think might be worse than just being so sick that you throw in the towel and sleep all day. Brandon is in full-swing in his new job, but his schedule changes every week, and sometimes he works 7am-3:30pm, and sometimes he works 3pm-11:30pm, and sometimes even 7am-7pm. So our life schedule, not to mention our WOD schedule, has been puh-retty random. And amongst all that, we have been trying to eat Zone (which has been marginally successful), get enough sleep, have a life, and maybe even go skiing a few times.

The sleeping part has been going well for me, because not only is sleeping my second favorite activity (after eating), but I am pretty sure I have borderline narcolepsy and can literally fall asleep within about 10 minutes at any given point of the day. Brandon, on the other hand, has officially diagnosed himself with chronic insomnia. He falls asleep quickly, but then wakes up constantly throughout the night, getting only a few hours of sleep after all is said and done, and this is a pretty new problem that has cropped up since he started this job in December.

As of today we have decided to attack this problem, potentially starting with a Whole30 or similar (even though he eats pretty clean, there is still a lot of cheese and some grains in his diet), limiting his coffee intake to before 10am, and trying to standardize his wake-up time (since unfortunately he can’t standardize his bedtime since he sometimes doesn’t get home until after midnight). He is also thinking about trying Melatonin supplements. Have you ever dealt with insomnia? What worked for you?

//Having a life has also been a bit of a challenge, but we have been on some really great date nights in the past few weeks. On Valentine’s Day we went to sushi, and then to Canvas & Cocktails, which is one of those really cute places where you drink wine and paint masterpieces. I was very proud of Brandon for coming up with that idea all on his own, and despite us both thinking it was going to be a little cheesey, it was actually REALLY fun.

This past Friday night we went out to sushi again (what can I say, I LOVE sushi), and then went to the Denver Museum of Modern Art. There was a new exhibit opening, so after the “Member’s Only” opening, the public was allowed in for only 10 cents. Pretty hard to beat that. Even though the new exhibit was the most hipster thing I’ve ever been a part of.One of the “pieces” was a little pedestal with a light on it that flashed Lady Gaga’s Twitter Feed in morse code. Another “piece” was a series of photos of what looked like chocolate bars, only to find out that they were SPACE bars, and the description talked about how this series “explored the irony of the space bar, which is meant to create space, but takes up the most space on a standard keyboard.” I mean really. I could not make this stuff up.


Last but not least, we have been trying to get a few good ski days in this season, and so far so good. After that awesome ski lesson I had a few weeks ago, I booked another one, but then had to reschedule when I got sick, and then missed it anyway because on Saturday night I was awake from 2am-4am with a back spasm (where the heck did that come from, is what I wanna know). We almost didn’t go skiing at all yesterday, but realized that we so frequently talk ourselves out of going up to the mountains, but always are grateful we made the effort when we do. Even though we didn’t get on the slopes until almost Noon and were driving away by 3:30, we went for quality over quantity and both got some really great skiing in. I spent some more time in moguls, and it’s definitely slow progress, but I’m getting there. And it really is always, always worth it to get out of the city and into the mountains, even if it’s only for a few hours.

So that’s my life right now. Oh, and the Open starts this week. But that is a post for another day.

OH AND we finally got the wedding pictures back! You can click here to check out a slideshow of the highlights on our photographer’s blog! Get excited. They are pretty great.

  • Simone

    I went downhill skiing for the first time last Saturday! Had a total blast and only one major fall :P I definitely would not have done so well on my first day if not for crossfit, which was a pretty sweet feeling :)

    • clairechapman

      Woo! Nice work! Gotta love it when killing yourself in the box finally has some tangible results!

  • Jennifer Hudy

    I used to have sleep issues but seems like since I kill myself at Crossfit and eat well, the sleep thankfully comes naturally.. I have a fellow box member that just started the melatonin thing.. he said it gives him CRAZY dreams..
    Has Brandon looked into magnesium first? Melatonin scares me since it is a hormone where magnesium is more of a supplement.. just a thought.

    Anyway, the skiing looks beautiful! And wedding pics are PERFECT!! <3

    • clairechapman

      Thaaank you! I used to take melatonin in HS but I think it worked because my problem was literally just that my hormones didn’t match with the school day, not that I was stressed or had other issues. So we shall see. He got a good night’s sleep last night so that’s a start!

  • Theresa Baumgartner Mahlik

    The wedding pictures are simply beautiful. The day and you two could not have been more perfect. (Really, really jealous. :)) As for the insomnia, I too suffer bouts of the same kind. Lunesta works for me when I really need a solid 7 hours. I got tired of being tired and only use it occasionaly. Dietary changes won’t help (usually). It’s the stress of the new job and weird schedule. Hopefully the stress will subside and he’ll get used to the schedule. And congrats on signing up for the Open and again, those pictures. Perfection.

    • clairechapman

      Thank you! We are SO happy with how they turned out! And I agree, if it’s hormonal or something then diet changes/supplements can help, but if it’s just stress then he needs to figure out another solution. He took some Magnesium last night and that seemed to help, so we shall see. Thanks for the advice!

  • Martha Furst

    Wedding pics are stunning–I think you guys could be an advertisement for a “snowy Colorado destination wedding…”

    • clairechapman

      Haha thank you! I am submitting them to a few wedding blogs, we’ll see if anyone bites :)

  • Ilse

    I’ve taken melatonin and it was fine until it wasn’t. I had crazy dreams as well and what made me stop was when I had a night of no sleep and really bad nightmares when I did. I like these Relax supplements we get from Sprouts… It’s not really meant to make you sleep but it does help significantly… My body just feels like lead when I take them. Melatonin can be good to get out of a cycle though for sure! I think Brandon could benefit from some meditation though before bed.. I have a feeling it might be related to the content of his job… If that’s it, it will get easier…

    • clairechapman

      Yeah I think melatonin fixes the problem if your clock is just out of whack (I used to take it in high school and it was great, but the only problem was that I was a teenager and my circadian rhythm didn’t match with the school day…), but if the problem is stress then it prob won’t help. He took a magnesium supplement last night that really helped, so we’ll see. Thanks!


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