Train harder by sleeping better
Let’s face it, we all know the basic benefits of sleep. The more sleep you receive, the more productive you’ll be and the better your mood will be. When it comes to running, you probably know that getting adequate sleep helps running. The question isn’t why, but how does it help and why is sleep so imperative to developing the perfect running skills?
If extra sleep could potentially shave minutes off your finishing time, or help you break your recent record, would you be willing to invest in your sleep? If the answer is yes (hopefully!), then you’d better have a read.
Numerous studies have proven, time and time again, the importance of sleep when it comes to running and exercise in general. A recent study published in the Scandanavian Journal of Medicine and Science in Sports found that surprisingly, athletes aren’t getting nearly enough sleep compared to non-athletes. The professionals tend to sleep less, only getting 6.5-7.5 hours with a lower quality of sleep.
What does this all mean? Even the best of the best need to work on their sleeping patterns. The same study also found that poor-quality sleep can have an extremely adverse impacts on performance of said athletes. Test subjects took a cycling test after a night of partial sleep loss, and results showed that heart rate and oxygen intake increased more than usual; the exact opposite of what anyone doing morning exercise needs or wants!
As runners, we know that we need more sleep than most. When you train hard, your muscles need time to regrow and recharge overnight. As we sleep, our bodies release growth hormone that stimulates muscle regeneration, as well as building muscle and burning fat. This is essentially what allows you to wake up every morning and still feel fine to smash out your daily run. Whether it’s 5km or 50km, this rest period during sleep is what enables you to continuously run without your muscles collapsing.
When you’re sleep deprived, you can’t release as much growth hormone as required and your muscles won’t repair like they should. This will leave you feeling sore and sorry for yourself after your normal run, and can lead to injuries and negative thoughts associated with your run.
These are our top tips that are guaranteed to have an impact on the way you sleep, whether you’re a runner or not.
HAVE A SLEEP SCHEDULE
ALL THE WATER
IT’S NOT YOU, IT’S YOUR MATTRESS
DITCH THE SCREENS
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