How This Yogini Preaches The Gospel Of Sleep

yoga and sleep
I’m Leanne Fogarty, I’m 27 and a Neuromuscular Physical Therapist and qualified Yoga Teacher. Growing up in Ireland, I’ve always enjoyed an active lifestyle. I play tennis competitively and I absolutely love my job. I work with many sports teams, 1:1 injury clients and I teach yoga virtually and in person. 
A lot of my clients want to understand their bodies more and what better way than intermingling physical therapy and yoga. 
I love to travel, to me it’s a way of life. Not all classrooms have four walls and travel is the best way to immerse in geography, history, culture, languages, biology…you name it. Travel enriches the mind and educates us far beyond any textbook or travel guide. I feel the same about Physical Therapy and Yoga as I do travelling. Physical Therapy and Yoga in my opinion complement each other beautifully. 
Preventing injury and being your best self is so important. I believe in learning from past experiences, living in the present and exploring the future.
Tell us about your sleep?
When I started my own business 7 years ago I was constantly in overdrive. Working crazy hours with my brain switched on 24/7. I particularly struggled with relaxing at night. My sleep quality was very poor. Over the last 18 months,  I’ve drawn massive attention to my own self-care and well-being. Sufficient sleep is a massive part it. 
Bedtime/Evening Rituals?
Every night I try to be in bed before 11 pm and rise at 7/7.30am. Night Prep Evening Rituals play a big part in my life. 
I love a good skincare routine, I lie on my Acupuncture Mat every night for 20min, I turn on my diffuser with relaxing essentials oils, I drink green tea an hour or so before bedtime. A few times a week I would soak my feet in Epsom salts to help me unwind. CBD, I find, helps reduce any internal inflammation which helps me sleep better so I take 2 drops of that before getting into bed.
My silk pillowcase and silk eye mask have not only improved my hair and skin but have improved my sleep. Even just the feeling against my face makes me feel comfortable and relaxed. Three years ago two friends and I travelled to the Philippines and one of them brought a silk pillowcase,  I couldn’t understand why when we were going from hotel to hotel. BUT now I understand. I don’t think I’d be able to sleep without mine now. Its only when you have one is when you fully understand how amazing it is. 
Do you have wind down techniques? Digital curfew?
If I’m editing work content or watching TV in the evenings I try and switch it all off 30-40min before bed ( sometimes it’s easier said than done). I often get late-night screen headaches, so I’ve recently been using blue light glasses and they’ve been super. 
Every night I spend 15 minutes doing yoga, meditating, and journaling (usually 5, 5, 5 minutes on each) and do the same in the morning. This 15 minutes just helps me focus on grounding myself and being present. 
How many pillows do you sleep on?
I’ve one 1 memory foam pillow that I use with my silk pillowcase and I use another small pillow between my knees to keep my spine aligned during the night. I’ve many patients that suffer massively with lower back issues and a lot of the time it can be the way they are sleeping. 
Wake with the birds?
I don’t use blackout curtains because I try and wake up naturally with the sun. I also don’t set an alarm. My body usually knows when to wake.  My body clock didn’t happen overnight, it takes time to build up and ingrain the sleep cycle, so that your body knows when to rise. 
Night waking? Toilet during the night?
I’m blessed with no night waking. And I never really need to use the bathroom during the night. I make sure if I’m drinking water or green tea it’s at least an hour before bed and go to the bathroom before going to sleep. 
Do you dream?
I dream a lot. I have lots of real-life dreams. Never nightmares or terrors. The dreams I have are almost like clips that could have easily happened in real life. It’s hard to explain but very interesting. I’d dream most nights but can’t really remember them the next morning. If you’re into “Why you dream”, I would highly recommend Joe Rogan’s podcast episode with Matthew Walker. It’s amazing! 
Sum up sleep?
If I have a good routine in place I have no trouble sleeping – if I don’t, I toss and turn and spend the night staring at the ceiling followed by terrible form the following day. A solid prep for a sleep routine is massive for me. Over the last 12 months I’ve really found what’s worked for me and for that I’m very grateful.