The importance of sleep for our daily performance seems obvious, but most of us are not aware of its incredible benefits. What I will focus on this time is the importance of good sleep in our performance in our physical training and optimal fitness results.
When it comes to exercising, sleep can play a huge role in how your body functions, grows, and changes. Having a good night’s sleep is a crucial part of your health routine. So if you don’t have healthy sleep habits already, I will show you some strong reasons to structure as soon enough hours of good sleep on your daily basis.
What amount of sleep do you need per day?
Sleep offers the body and brain time to restore and recover, affecting nearly every tissue in the body. According to the National Sleep Foundation, most adults need at least 7 to 9 hours of sleep, yet almost one-third of Americans are getting less than 6 hours per night.
A good amount of sleep is important for regulating the central nervous system as well as your brain function. People who sleep less than five hours are nearly five times more likely to have a cold than people who sleep for seven hours a night. So, the more you sleep, the better your health. Sleep directly affects your immune system!
Sleep gives you more capacity while working out
When you lead an active lifestyle, your body desperately needs rest. When you are well-rested, you perform at your best capacity. That means more intense gym sessions/workouts and less fatigue. We all know that feeling mid-workout when you want to give up because you are so tired. And I think everyone has had that time where they’ve chosen sleep over a workout.
The goal is to schedule your day to fit in 7-8 hours of sleep along with time for physical activity, to balance the effects of both. If you are completing intense workouts, you may need even more than those 8 hours to effectively recover your muscles in preparation for the next workout.
Sleep improves your recovery
Sleep allows muscle tissue time to recover between workouts. Sufficient sleep is also important in having the energy to exercise. Not getting enough sleep can lead to being less physically active during the day and reduced muscle strength during workouts.
Sleep conserves energy, repair and builds up the muscles worked during exercise. When we get enough good quality sleep, the body produces growth hormones. So if you got seven to eight hours of sleep the night before, get up and hit the gym! But if you’ve been clocking less than six hours most nights that week, you probably want to savor that extra hour of sleep. If you skip it, chances are you’ll log a subpar workout, anyway.
Here are 3 basic tips for improving your sleep through exercise:
- Don’t eat too late: Be sure to give your body time to digest after eating large meals. Try having dinner earlier in the evening.
- Avoid caffeine: Beware of stimulants like coffee, energy drinks, and soda. If you do consume these, try to limit them to early in the day. If you find yourself drinking a lot of caffeine during the day, ask yourself if you’re making up for excessive daytime sleepiness.
- Have a correct exercise schedule to improve your sleep: While any movement during the daytime is good, it’s even better to get regular, moderate exercise a few days a week. Strength training at any time of day may improve sleep, but try to avoid working out too close to bedtime, giving your body a few hours after working out to wind down before bed.
Find more health advice and tips in my blog.