As a fitness coach for the past 6 years, I am frequently asked about ways to lose weight, lean
out or increase performance.
This can be a very hard to answer. People want to change their
diet or workout more, but what they might be missing is sleep. Sleep is an underrated,
sometimes forgotten component in living a long and healthy life. With chasing kids around or
busy work schedules, sleep can be the first thing to go.
So, what can we do? We cannot create more time. We can’t always go to bed super early, but
we can create better sleep habits. As an adult, we want to strive for 7-9 hours of sleep each
night. The quantity of sleep hours is important but equally important is the quality.
We want to aim for 4-5, 90 min sleep cycles a night. When we wake in the middle of a sleep cycle we
tend to be more tired. When we add consistency to the time we go to bed and rise, we will be
better able to wake at the end of a cycle. This will create a better rhythm and help you fall asleep
and rise more naturally.
The environment also plays a role in our sleep quality. If you can make
your room dark, cool and with no distractions, it will help signal to your body it is sleep time.
When we gain a better night’s sleep we will improve our health, by lowering the risk for
obesity, heart disease, high blood pressure and many other health risks. Our bodies will be
better able to adapt to the daily stress of life.
A healthy night’s sleep will improve nearly every area of your health, body composition and performance!