Actress, model and fitness fanatic, Gemma Atkinson is a household name thanks to her roles in Hollyoaks and Casualty. A sufferer of frequent backache, Gemma first heard about Mammoth’s mattresses through Fitness Professional Olly Foster. And after test-driving the mattress at Cousins furniture store in Manchester, Gemma knew she’d found the solution to broken sleep.
Ahead of her new role in Emmerdale, we caught up with Gemma to discuss bedroom décor, putting an end to broken sleep and being woken up by an overly affectionate dog.
Mammoth mattresses are known for their health benefits. Have you suffered any serious injuries?
I thankfully haven’t suffered from any serious injuries. However, I did suffer with back ache quite frequently. I used to link this to my training so I just dealt with it as best as I could. It’s only since changing to a Mammoth mattress the pain has gone and I’ve realised it had nothing to do with my training but more so to do with my sleeping.
Would you consider rest time and recovery to be an important part of your training regime?
Rest time and recovery is a must-have for any training regime. Both mentally and physically. If I don’t sleep properly everything else suffers. It’s like a domino effect. Since purchasing a Mammoth my sleep isn’t really broken now. It’s amazing in fact.
How many hours of sleep do you aim for a night? And do you usually reach your target?
I try to aim for 8hrs sleep if I can. It’s usually around 10pm to 6am. If ever I have to be up at 5am for work, I try to be in bed for 9pm.
What impact does it have on you if you’re unable to get a good night’s sleep?
Missing out on sleep has a huge impact on my day. Like most people, my mood, patience, everything suffers really if I don’t sleep well. I don’t think there’s anything worse than being over tired.
What kind of sleeper are you?
I used to be a light sleeper in that I would wake maybe 2 to 3 times. But now it’s very rare that I wake more than once in the night – unless my dog Norman jumps on me for cuddles, that is!
In my job I have to learn lines and I only have time to do them in the evening when I’m home so I sometimes go to bed with my words still running around in my head, which can be frustrating.
What kind of sleep environment do you prefer and do you have any particular bedtime routine?
Our bedroom is very dark and cosy. We have black and gold decor and we decided that black-out blinds were a must have. We don’t have a TV in the bedroom. That decision was made when decorating, as we wanted to keep it a calm environment.
I like to lie in bed and read for a while before sleeping and I always put my phone on silent at least 30 minutes before going to sleep, too. Ideally, I’ll even leave it on the other side of the room because I find it distracting to have it next to the bed.
I found out about Mammoth from Olly Foster. He’s a fitness model and trainer so his sleep and rest time is very important to him. He suggested we should spend more time choosing a mattress over anything else as that’s what determines your night’s sleep, after all.
Olly did lots of research and I checked out a number of customer reviews, which were all fantastic. As soon as I lay down on the Pocket Hybrid 1600 at Cousins Furniture Store in Manchester, I knew that it was the mattress I’d been looking for. I could have fallen asleep then and there!
If you could have a (purely platonic) late night chat with anyone, who would be worth losing sleep over and why?
If I could, I would have a late night chat with my dad, David. He passed away 13 years ago so we have a lot of catching up to do and I have so much to tell him! We’d be up for weeks.