Basic Lifestlye Guideline

Basic Lifestyle Guideline: Sleep (Continued) - How to Improve Sleep

20190811_170745_0000.png

As we discussed in our last blog post, sleep should be one of our highest priorities. When looking to improve sleep quality, rhythm is one of the first things to work on.

It may sound easy, but often we do not follow the principles of rhythm with our sleep. Getting in to a rhythm can help you see increase in your performance. Here are the steps to get through this process:

  • Fall asleep and wake up roughly at the same time every day (plus or minus 30 minutes on either). As you get more used to it, you may wake up prior to your alarm and may also fall asleep more easily.

index.png

Having the proper environment is also important. Sleep hygiene is setting up the best possible environment to fall asleep in. That means:

  • Blacking out all of the lights

  • Dropping the temperature of the room to roughly 67 degrees Fajrenheit

  • Eliminating any other noises or hums (caveat of white noise that allows someone to fall asleep)

  • Creating an environment in your bedroom, or wherever you sleep consistently, that means that it is a place for sleeping. That may look like removing a cell phone or tv. Eliminate all of the other tasks that you feel the need to do in your bedroom so that your body interprets that room as a place to sleep.

Some of the other distractions or disruptors in your bedroom may be:

  • Eating in bed

  • Working in bed

  • Reading in bed

  • Watching tv

Going to bed as calm as possible helps our bodies recognize that it’s time to start winding down, which helps you stay in a great rhythm throughout the night and in to the next day(s).

Developing a nightly routine can help this. Here are some things that could help with your nightly routine:

  • Massage - Can help some people relax before they go to bed.

  • Avoiding a hot shower before bed - For some people, raising their body temperature too high may cause them to not sleep well because they are not cooling naturally. We do not want to work against the body’s natural lowering of it’s temperature throughout the night.

  • Contrast baths or showers - Going from hot to cold and finishing on cold can rush some blood flow to the digestive organs and start the process of cooling off the external portion of the body to get the body better suited for sleep.

  • Non-vigorous light stretching - Some basic stretching movements can calm the body down and ease people in to a better state of sleep.

  • Journaling or writing in a diary - A little bit of a brain dump can lower anxiety.

  • Breathwork - Breathing diaphragmatically helps elicit the parasympathetic response.

sleeptimerecommendations_chart_final.jpg


The more you can dial in on your sleep, the more your basic health, blood chemistry, results, recovery and performance in your workouts will go up. Something as simple as implementing some sleep patterns can work magic!

If your struggling to get in to a rhythm, try this:

Use Google calendar, iCal or Outlook to create a calendar for the week. Plot out what time you eat, use the restroom, work, train, sleep, etc. each day for one week. Find inconsistencies from day to day and play with the idea of being able to make small tweaks +/- 30 minutes to help make more alignment between these elements on a day-to-day basis.

CLICK HERE to schedule your FREE consult with one of our Professional Coaches!


Basic Lifestyle Guideline: Sleep

20190807_195932_0000.png

Sleep should be one of your biggest considerations. Sleep draws the line between challenging and supporting the system. Being able to rest, recover and repeat work the next day is critical to your success.

While quantity of hours is a good place to start, quality is also important. Studies show that obesity rates in adults who sleep less than 6 hours a night are up to 40% higher than those that get 6 or more hours regularly.

You’re sleeping 8 hours per night… AWESOME - but if you are waking up 13 times during those 8 hours even perfect compliance with nutrition and training will not get you the results you were working for.

Sleeping is a basic human need, like eating, drinking, and breathing. Like these other needs, sleeping is a vital part of the foundation for good health and well-being throughout your lifetime.

Sleep deficiency can lead to physical and mental health problems, injuries, loss of productivity, and even a greater risk of death.

Sleep deficiency can interfere with work, school, driving, and social functioning. You might have trouble learning, focusing, and reacting. Also, you might find it hard to judge other people's emotions and reactions. Sleep deficiency also can make you feel frustrated, cranky, or worried in social situations.

Some of the benefits of consistent, quality sleep are:

  • Helps reduce stress - If your body doesn’t get enough sleep, it can react by producing an elevated level of stress hormones, which are a natural result of today’s faster paced lifestyles. Deep and regular sleep can help prevent this.

  • Improve memory - Ever noticed that when you’re really tired it’s harder to remember things? Basically this is your brain telling you that it’s not getting enough sleep. When you sleep well, your body may be resting but your brain is busy organizing and storing memories. So getting more quality sleep will help you remember and process things better.

  • Lower your blood pressure - Higher blood pressure increases your chances of heart attacks and strokes, but getting plenty of restful sleep encourages a constant state of relaxation that can help reduce blood pressure and generally keep it under control.

  • Helps your body fight back - While you’re sleeping your body is producing extra protein molecules that can strengthen your ability to fight infection. So if you’re feeling a bit run down and you don’t want it to turn into a full-blown cold, go to bed early and get lots of rest.

  • Helps you maintain your weight - Unfortunately, sleep won’t directly make you lose weight, but it can help you keep it under control by regulating the hormones that affect your appetite and reducing your cravings for high calorie foods.

  • Puts you in a better mood - Lack of sleep can make us more agitated, so we’re more likely to snap at the boss or be grumpy with a loved one, neither of which is a good thing.

    The better you sleep the better your ability to stay, calm, controlled and reasonable.

  • Could reduces your chance of diabetes - Some research studies have shown that not getting enough sleep may lead to type 2 diabetes by affecting how your body processes glucose. It’s not conclusive by any means, but it’s yet another indication of how important the benefits of sleep can be.

  • Helps keep your heart healthy - A regular sleep pattern can help to lower the levels of stress and inflammation to your cardiovascular system, which in turn can reduce your chances of a stroke or heart condition.

  • Can be a painkiller - If you’re suffering pain from a recent injury like a sprained ankle, getting plenty of sleep can actually make you hurt less. Many studies have shown a link between sleep loss and a lower pain threshold. Basically the more sleep you get the less pain you might be in.

  • Can help make you smarter - Along with a great night’s sleep, grabbing a quick nap in the daytime can contribute towards making your brain more effective and productive. You won’t necessarily be answering all the questions on University Challenge, but you may well feel sharper, more attentive and focused throughout the day.

CLICK HERE to schedule your FREE No Sweat consultation with one of our Professional OPEX Coaches!



Basic Lifstyle Guidline: Energy

Basic Lifstyle Guidline: Energy

The reality is, you shouldn’t need stimulants for energy (so back off that Red Bull you’re sipping on). As more and more stress is introduced into your system, your body will need to adapt to that stress, which may cause you to start seeing lower energy levels in the morning because you’re not sleeping as well.