Is your sleep impacting your results?
Ever noticed that when you don’t sleep well, your eating habits are a little all over the place the next day?
Your ability to make decisions, whether it be food-related, choosing the best font to go with your Insta story or the choice that sends you to a great promotion or absolutely not.
We’ve all been there. Sleep deprivation is real, and it can be from as little as an hour less than normal or the same amount but at different times, which leaves you not quite feeling your best.
Enough sleep, but varying times - this does interesting things to your sleep quality and energy.
Ever noticed that after a great 7-10 hours of kip, you still have no energy? You’ve likely missed out on some beautiful REM. This can leave you feeling absolutely exhausted. It is the time where you recover mentally, processing the things you’ve learnt in the day, recovering from difficult conversations and doing some mental first aid.
Without a good balance of deep (early part of the night, physical recovery) or REM sleep (later part of the night, mental recovery) you can spend your day feeling less than optimal and make decisions that mirror how you feel.
The best way to improve your quality of sleep is by improving your circadian rhythm. This means, keeping everything as regular as possible. When you wake up and go to bed are one thing - a very big thing.
Going to bed at the same time each night makes it easier to switch off and fall into a deep sleep early on.
By waking at the same time each morning you allow your body to gain enough REM sleep, which is disrupted if you get up earlier than normal.
Eating at similar times each day, allows your digestion to improve, as well as your energy and ability to switch off at night.
Think about it, you operate better when you know what’s coming up and when you have a routine. So does your body.
If you feel constantly tired, it’s no surprise that you may struggle to eat the right foods - cue high fat and sugar, as well as copious amounts of caffeine to trick yourself into believing you have energy. You’re also more likely to skip your workout or walk around the park at lunch because you think it will feel better. Get your shoes on and go NOW, the endorphins will make all the difference.
What if your lifestyle doesn’t allow for this structure?
Look at your lifestyle - what can/are you willing to change?
Add in a nap rather than a snack mid-morning/lunchtime
Make sure you have meals prepped for the week you know sleep is going to be tough
Reduce expectations and responsibilities when life is knocking your sleep
Adjust big lift days to smaller lift days, or lower intensity/concentration movements (i.e. walking and stretching instead of handstands and snatching)
Make sure your room is set up for good sleep - cool, dark, quite
Reduce pre-bed stress - turn your phone off, wear blue light glasses, journal, meditate
Try sleep aids (ZMA, Magnesium, Ashwagandha or melatonin - not sleeping tablets) if you struggle with drifting off or staying asleep
Getting more sleep doesn’t have to be complicated, but getting enough can be a huge game-changer in your quality of life and your results.