Perform Better at the Gym with Proper Sleep
If you’re hitting the gym regularly or training for a special event, more shut-eye could help you run faster, lift heavier weights and recover more quickly.
Here’s a closer look at how proper sleep can take your workouts and training to the next level.
Effects of Sleep Deprivation on Athletes
A recent study published in the journal Sports Medicine highlights the effects of sleep loss on exercise performance. Researchers suggest that sleep loss can have a significant impact on athletic performance because it triggers autonomic nervous system imbalances. The autonomic nervous system controls breathing, heartbeat and digestion, so any imbalances to this system can impact athletic performance. The effects of this imbalance can cause symptoms similar to overtraining, such as an inability to sleep.
Nervous system imbalances can make it difficult for an athlete to recover after a strenuous workout or competition. A study published in the journal PLOS ONE shows a link between sleep and the immune system function. Sleep is a healing process, so anything that interferes with quality sleep can affect the immune system, which increases the risk of getting sick, and may slow recovery from injuries.
If you’re learning a new routine or training new muscle groups, it’s even more important to get some quality sleep between sessions to fully prepare your body and mind. The experts at the Harvard Medical School Division of Sleep Medicine report that the short-term effects of lack of sleep can increase our risk of accidents and injury.
Making Time for Better Sleep
Some ways you can improve your sleep:
- Adjust your sleep clock. The NCAA reports that the
typical adult aged 30 to 60 sleeps between 10 p.m.
and 7 a.m. If you aren’t getting to bed until midnight you may be missing out on valuable sleep hours. Adjust your bedtime and wake up time to ensure you’re getting enough Zzzs.
- Measure and track sleep quality. Use the SleepIQ® app with your Sleep Number® bed to keep track of how your room temperature, hours of sleep activity, and daily activities are affecting the quality of your sleep. Some adjustments to your bedtime routine and sleep position could help improve your sleep.
- Optimize your sleep environment. You need to settle in to a cool and dark place for a good night’s rest. Make sure to shut down any TVs, computers and smartphones in your sleep space. If you need to, move the bed to limit exposure to light from the windows or hang curtains that will block out as much light as possible.
Making some small adjustments to your sleep routine and getting more quality sleep can improve your performance at the gym or in any sport.
Like diet and exercise, quality sleep is essential for optimal health and performance. Because everyone’s sleep needs are different, Sleep Number® beds with SleepIQ® technology inside adjust to your ideal level of firmness, comfort and support. SleepIQ technology tracks how well you sleep each night, giving you personal insights into your sleep so you’ll learn how life affects your sleep and how sleep affects your life. Find your Sleep Number® setting for your best possible night’s sleep.