Who: Julia E., New York, NY, director of events and brand partnerships for Sage + Sound
Surprising Oura insight: While looking at her 24-hour heart rate graph on the Oura App after a sound mediation, Julia was surprised to see the deep impact this mindfulness practice had on her heart rate, focus, and energy levels.
What led you to Oura?
As a busy New Yorker, I have long struggled to “feel good” consistently. In 2021, a fitness instructor suggested that I start listening to my body to help determine what it needed at any given moment. She was an Oura member herself and was fascinated by the feedback she was getting. I scrolled the site for months deciding which color to get.
When I saw the addition of the period prediction feature, that sealed the deal for me. I went with the Horizon style in Rose Gold. Seeing it on my finger each day truly makes me happy both for how it looks and for how much I know it’s giving me.
How has Oura helped you on your journey toward better sleep?
Using Oura has highlighted the importance of consistent sleep and Restorative Time. Since having my two children (now 11 and 8), I’ve learned that my mind is clearest in the early morning hours. I love how quickly thoughts come together and how work projects take shape before everyone wakes up.
The problem arose when exhaustion would set in around 5pm. I’d be counting down the minutes to put the kids to sleep and crawl into bed. There was little to no consistency to my sleep schedule; I’d either stay up late watching TV and set my alarm for my early solo time, or I’d pass out myself while putting my children to bed before 9pm. Tracking my sleep each night with Oura helped me to see what a big impact these inconsistencies have on my overall readiness for each day.
I’ve also noticed that a late meal affects my sleep as much as a drink or two. Sometimes I’ll sleep through the night, but if my REM sleep is low, it’s almost always due to a late dinner. In the Oura App, Julia’s heart rate graph shows her “Restorative Time” in bright green, signifying how her heart rate lowers during meditation events at work. This helps her feel recharged and refocused, especially during phases of her cycle when she has lower energy.
The real “a-ha” moment with Oura came after I did a 20-minute sound meditation at work. During this meditation, an instruction guides you through the lens of active listening. I enjoyed it, but then went about my day. When I checked the app later that evening, I was delighted to see my heart rate graph filled with bright green indicating the brief yet impactful “restorative time” that was quite literally charging my battery.
I was fascinated that this small piece of tech on my finger measured a decrease in heart rate for the exact length of this meditation. It was then I realized that “restorative time” taken throughout the day offered the same sense of recovery that comes with sleep, woven into my rhythm of an otherwise highly scheduled day.
Oura showed me the deep impact a mindfulness practice has on my overall health. With just 15-20 minutes, my heart rate lowers, my mind clears, and I can come back to my day with renewed energy and clarity.
LEARN MORE: What Is Restorative Time?
What other surprising insights have you learned about your health since using Oura?
Before Oura, I knew I physically felt my best in the middle of my cycle. What I didn’t know was that my body temperature fluctuates significantly during certain phases. Oura measures my temperature every minute which captures the full picture of changes in your body.
Being able to see where I am in my cycle and my body temperature trends validates how I might feel differently throughout my cycle. This makes it easier to give myself that extra love when I need it, such as dropping into a 30-minute meditation during lunch or taking an early-morning breathwork class.
What’s Your Oura Story?
Everyone’s story is unique, and we’d love to hear yours. Share your story here.