Sleeping to help sporting performance
Hi there is no person more than me, that can drop off to sleep, any place anytime anywhere, In fact I laugh about this, but I have known to fall asleep while someone is talking to me over the telephone, or even while at the cinema, seeing the start of the film and seeing the credits have got me in trouble in the past cinema visits, but I realise I am NOT the only person who loves planned sleep or spontaneous bouts of sleep.
I am no sleep expert, but I know from the past that having sleep as part of your preparation will not hinder your performance.
Let’s ask the question why do we sleep?
The main reason why we sleep is to restore a few different physiological functions, mainly
Cognitive function, Metabolism, Hormonal regulation and physiological function,
In most cases sleep lost has an effect on any of the FOUR above and I am sure you have seen what lack of these has happened to people who you might work with or may have neglected due to lifestyle means.
You may probably may ask how do/will I know what is the optimum sleep for me to know, what is the optimum sleep for me
Well this can be trial and error for the individual or their coach to monitor, how they feel after a variation in sleeping times to feel which times made them function like a “boss” in the day or while training for an event.
The rule of thumb is normally 7-8 hours, something that most people don’t get a night.
What can cause lack of sleep?
A nagging women or bloke, well one of the biggest things that stops us from sleeping is STRESS, Life STRESS, worries of life, outside influences.
What things tend to happen through Lack of sleep?
Lack of sleep is believed to increase catabolic hormone and decreases your anabolic hormones, so cortisol increases and IGF1 are decreased if you a looking at building muscle, or having a strong body for performance again or any of the four things I mentioned earlier this is bad news for you.
If you are an athlete and you are NOT sleeping you are NOT giving the most to your training and NOT recovering to give the most effort to your training too.
Immune dysfunction, carbohydrate metabolism can be affected, your ability to reduce your body fat (Body composition), lack of sleep affects our moods and our ability to process information at speed and our reaction times
Foods can help you too sleep?
Most people that sleep well, have certain bed time habits that help go to sleep, and go into the NON-REM that most of us would like to get in too, as so waking up feeling fresh and energetic.
There are foods, beverages and supplements that have a good track record at helping people and athletes get a goodnights sleep, also their as drinks that make it an impossible task to go to sleep. Quality carbohydrates and berries at night has been said to help release serotonin to help us go to sleep, at the same time protein can inhibit serotonin release. (so it needs another blog post to go on about foods for sleep etc)
Getting short bouts of “Power naps”
I always encourage clients and performance athletes and boxers to get supplemental sleep or what most people would call “power naps” a few good little short sleeps, as well as your main night’s sleep, works amazing wonders for your mind and body and the four functions:
Cognitive function, Metabolism, Hormonal regulation and physiological function.
Just like how some people skip things that need to be done as part of a an athletic process and preparation, sleeping is one of the jigsaw pieces NOT to be ignored, sleep is very important and just making small changes and rituals before you go to sleep will help you get better quality sleep hopefully if you have little “Stresses” in your life.
You may know this
Part of interrogation in war past and current is making sure that when someone is captured that they are deprived of sleep, so hence that they will NOT only give information but will be disorientated are likely to more under control from the enemy.
I hope you have enjoyed the read, don’t forget to share on your social media links, stay blessed.
Coach Martin Gooden