The conflict is real. Getting fit requires sleep, although it seems the world conspires against it some nights…
There’ no doubt that in order to be fit and healthy, diet and exercise are simple steps to a better lifestyle. If you stop at that, however, you’ll be selling yourself short.
Good health, longevity, happiness, and weight management are far more than just what you eat and how much you exercise. Getting fit requires sleep.
If you’re serious about making adjustments or changes to the way you approach your health, start by learning about the relationship between sleep, stress, and sunlight.
The links to these articles are at the bottom of this page.
But today, it’s all about sleep…
Sleep is restoration time. It’s when your body repairs itself. And, chances are, you’re not getting nearly enough of it. Are you?
Do you regularly wake up refreshed and ready to take on the day?
➡ If you’re like most people you’re not getting good, regular sleep. You’re hitting the snooze button several times, fumbling for your coffee fix, and yawning at work.
➡ You’re staying up late with the TV going or you’re taking your laptop, pad or phone to bed.
It wasn’t always like this.
Until about a hundred twenty years ago, when the sun went down, people either went to sleep or started getting ready for it.
➡ Life would wind down. Candles and fire were too costly to burn all night, every night, so nighttime meant bedtime.
Our genes evolved with plenty of sleep. They’re not used to artificial lights, television and the Internet keeping us awake and disrupting our natural sleep patterns.
So, when we get poor sleep or not enough of it, bad things happen. Getting Fit Requires Sleep.
➡ Our insulin sensitivity decreases – this reduces our ability to tolerate carbs and burn fat, making it harder to lose weight.
➡ We get an increased risk of depression
➡ The normal secretion of hormones like testosterone (important for general health) and growth hormone (burns fat and promotes cellular restoration), which usually takes place while we sleep, is interrupted.
- It raises blood pressure
- it boosts the risk of developing heart disease, diabetes, and obesity.
On the flip side, when we get enough sleep, good things happen
➡ Fat melts off
➡ Carbohydrate tolerance increases
➡ Exercise performance improves
➡ Speed, strength, recovery and response times increase
➡ Your immune system does its best work during sleep, improving your resistance to viruses and infections.
➡ Your brain works better. Memory and problem-solving abilities improve.
And that’s just for starters…
Sleep is anything but a waste of time. It’s actually essential. So make sure you get enough quality sleep, (around 6-8 hours a night for most people).
That great big heart of yours will thank and reward you.