National Sleep Foundation offers helpful tips for Sage Steele’s new SC:AM routine

Strategic napping – like this one on ESPN’s Bristol campus – will help in Sage Steele’s adjustment to her new gig on the 7-10 a.m. SportsCenter:AM, beginning Monday. (Molly Mita/ESPN)

At 7 a.m. ET Monday, Sage Steele will begin her new role as a co-anchor of SportsCenter:AM, alongside Jay Harris and Randy Scott.

It marks Steele’s return to the east coast after four years living in Arizona and also signals Steele’s introduction to the rigors of early morning television. This includes absurd 3 a.m. wake-up calls which will surely be a strain on Steele’s sleep habits.

We’re nothing if not helpful around here at Front Row, so we took the liberty of reaching out to Natalie Dautovich, PhD, Assistant Professor of Counseling Psychology at Virginia Commonwealth University and Environmental Fellow at National Sleep Foundation.

Dr. Dautovich’s pointers are below, and include brief comments from Steele on how likely she is to employ these and other tips found at, NSF’s lifestyle website.

Dr. Dautovich Says:

“During the days before the move [from Arizona], help your body prepare for the time change by going to bed earlier and getting up earlier in 15-minute increments.”

Sage Steele Says:

“Thanks a lot, Front Row. I moved a week ago. You couldn’t have had this brilliant post prepared a bit earlier?”

Dr. Dautovich Says:

“Capitalize on the power of light to help your rhythm adjust. Dim lights and close electronics during the hour before bed and then expose yourself to bright light upon awakening.”

Sage Steele Says:

“The power of light? What is this Star Wars (Disney plug!)? And, sorry Doc, but if I close my devices an hour before bed, I’m bound to miss something in the sports world. But I’ll dim the lights, no problem there!”

Dr. Dautovich Says:

“Use naps strategically to compensate for lost sleep during the transition. Mid-afternoon naps of short (less than 20 minutes) or long (greater than one hour) duration will ensure you don’t wake up feeling groggy.”

Sage Steele Says:

“Clearly, as the pic above indicates, I’m all about the nap. And now, to have a respected sleep professional basically ordering me to nap? I’m all in.”

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