One big aspect of a healthy lifestyle and weight management that gets overlooked often is sleep. The Quantity and Quality of sleep is extremely important for recovery. Recover physically as well as mentally. If you work out each week, the muscle growth occurs in recovery, e.g. when you’re sleeping and not when working out. So if you go too hard or don’t recover, it’s harder to see results. You have to allow your body to do this. Example of that in a conventional body building program is NOT to work out the same muscles two days in a row.
Now when it comes to sleep, quantity is key and very different for everyone. A basic guideline depending on your age would be 7-8 hours, some require less and some a little more. After you are in a routine and go to bed at a certain time and wake up at a certain time, your body will adjust and this now becomes habit. Obviously, it is more difficult to create habits if you go to bed at 1AM one night and 10PM the other. In terms of quality, there are a lot of factors on why your sleep isn’t high quality. Higher quality would be known as Delta Sleep before REM. Here are a few tips to help your sleep quality:
· Avoid Caffeine in the evening
· Exercise during the day
· Avoid Naps after dinner
· Control your environment in terms of light, sound, color
· Keep your room cool
· Listen to soft music or reading a book
I’ve found that using Melatonin as a supplement at times helps me with my sleep. If you find your mind won’t shut off and/or you’re thinking a lot about things before bed, Melatonin can help. You should always consult with your physician before using any supplements or medications.
At the end of the day, your ability to relax will ultimately set you up for success in your sleep habits. This will promote a healthy lifestyle!