I am following a strict diet, training and supplementation regime but i'm still not seeing the results!
Does this sound familiar?
Recovery is often the most overlooked factor in our health and fitness journey's but is by far one of the most important.
You may be stretching post workout, warming up and cooling down, taking rest days, supplementing with BCAA's & Protein, but what about sleep?
So why is sleep so important?
Studies have shown that increased quality and duration of sleep can lead to enhanced physical performance and mental wellbeing, making it an important aspect of recovery.
Sleep for muscle regeneration
Growth hormone, a peptide hormone that stimulates growth, cell reproduction & cell regeneration has been shown to be produced most during our deepest REM cycles, this is usually during the early hours of our sleep.
Poor sleeping patterns can have a negative effect on our body producing sufficient amount of growth hormone, leading to poor recovery and making it harder for us to gain lean muscle mass.
Fat burning & weightloss
Getting less than 6 hours of sleep at night can lead to poor insulin resistance, making it harder for our bodies to burn fat and more likely to store it instead.
Sleep deprivation has a large impact of brain & mental function. It can affect our motivation meaning less energy or drive to complete our workouts. It can also affect decision making leading to poor food choices and habits.
Sleep & overeating
Poor sleep can lead to an imbalance in hormones, when tired or sleep deprived, our body produces more of the hormone Ghrelin, this hormone signals the body to eat more & increases hunger, and less leptin, the hormone which decreases hunger, causing us to overeat and make food choices we wouldn’t normally make.
Sleep & stress
Lack of sleep can place stress on the body without us necessarily realising it, when tired we produce higher levels of cortisol (the stress hormone). The body reacts to high levels of cortisol by storing fat, most commonly around the abdomen.
Sleep deprivation is becoming more and more common and can be caused by a number of different things.
Excessive stimulant use - Research suggests that 400mg per day or less is an acceptable dose of caffeine, the time of day caffeine is consumed is also very important when it comes to sleep, it is recommended to limit caffeine consumption after noon.
Work/study commitments - Students facing study deadlines & shift workers often suffer due to poor & inconsistent sleeping patterns.
Insomnia - becoming more and more common insomnia can be a result of many different factors including: Anxiety, neurotransmitter imbalances, medical conditions, overuse of stimulants,
psychiatric issues, environmental factors (noisy neighbourhood, stressful homelife)
So how can you combat these issues and get a proper night sleep? here are a few of
1. Come up with an evening routine leading up to bed time and keep this consistent.
2. Limit screen time in the evening making sure to eliminate it completely at least 1 hour before bed.
3. Invest in an actual alarm clock, this will allow you to completely confiscate your mobile device before bed.
4. Try to cease consumption of caffeine after noon.
5. Some people find it hard to wind down if they exercise later in the evening, getting to sleep at a decent hour and having enough rest will allow you to rise earlier in the morning, try to exercise in the morning and see if this works for you.
6. Take 1 scoop of Emrald Labs Sleep Aid 30 minutes before bed, containing a powerful blend of Magnesium, Zinc + GABA, this product will help relax the body, promote a deeper sleep, lower cortisol levels and have you energized and ready for the next day upon waking.