Sleep and Exercise

By Coach Scott

I am sure you have heard many times “you need to get your sleep.”  But do you really know the benefits of sleep?

If you workout, are on a sports team, or a physical labor job, getting enough sleep is critical for performance.  Getting the proper amount of sleep improves speed, accuracy, and your reaction times.  (Most people need 7 to 9 hours.)

  • If you are training every day or multiple times a day, you will need more.

Sleep allows you to recover.

Let’s say it together “Sleep allows you to recover.”

How can you get more sleep?  Sounds pretty simple but, turn off the television or put down the phone. Endless scrolling will not help you fall asleep.

Remember when your Mom would fight with you to take a nap?  Well turns out she was right – Naps are also great.

But how do you ensure that you always get enough sleep?  Follow these steps and you will likely find yourself falling asleep faster.

  • Make it a routine.
    • Go to bed at the same time.
    • Get up at the same time.
  • Avoid taking sleep aids or medications.
  • No bright lights (no T.V. or phone 30 minutes before you go to bed).
  • Try deep breathing exercises.
  • Reduce alcohol or caffeine before going to bed.

What actually happens when we sleep to help our muscles recover?

  • When in deep sleep, the body releases HGH (Human Growth Hormone) which stimulates tissue growth and muscle repair.
  • Lack of sleep and poor quality sleep causes a deep decline in this hormone being released, resulting in loss of muscle mass, reduced exercise capacity and increased obesity.
  • A few of the other things that lack of sleep can cause are memory loss, depression, a weakened immune system, chronic sickness and increased pain.

To be the best version of ourselves, get more sleep and set yourself up for success.

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