In a society where we pump coffee and caffeinated beverages into our bodies like there’s no tomorrow, we must remember that “Sleep” is a critical factor in the restoration, recovery, and building of muscle. Sleep is the state where most muscle building takes place. Sleep is the condition required for our lungs and our organs to reset and regroup for a new day. Ignore your sleep requirements and you are setting yourself up for a fall.
More and more we’ve become a people that relies on less and less sleep and that is not good — especially for the person who takes their fitness to heart. And in fact, sleep is crucial to the health of our heart, our entire circulatory system, and not to mention our mental health. But sleep does not come easy in this busy work til you drop society. Get the kids off to school, clean the house, maintain the yard, attend conferences, pick and drop off at daycare, attend varous school functions, work the overtime that your boss requires, and well … we have to borrow some time from somewhere and sadly we steal from our sleep time.
So, starting today, make commit to taking your sleep seriously. Affirm that to sleep less means to decrease the level of your health. Tell yourself that 7 to 8 hours of sleep is not a luxury, but instead a necessity. Turn the TV off and forget the late night programming and force yourself to bed earlier. On heavy workout days, make a concerted effort to pad an extra hour of sleep into your day. Do whatever is necessary to ensure that you reverse the trend of sleep deprivation that is interfering with your workout recovery.
Remember, that sleep is just as crucial to your fitness level as your running shoes, a dumbbell in the gym, or the protein drink that you ingest. Sleep is the fit person’s friend and if you respect and honor your sleep time, everything in your physical, emotional, spiritual, and professional life will become better. Sleep is where your body gets reloaded with ammunition for the day. Sleep is the recharge to your batteries. Sleep is required to for true fitness. Give yourself 8 hours of sleep and you can become an faster more efficient and yes — happier you! A good night sleep is the foundation for health. Nurture that foundation by giving yourself the sleep you deserve for excellence!