March is National Sleep Awareness month, but just how important is sleep to your fitness goals? Some advice from i-motion gym to help you on your fitness journey…
When we think about fitness we think of two things, calorie intake and exercise regime. We perhaps don’t think of Sleep, yet statistically if you sleep the ‘right’ amount for your individual needs then you are likely to have a lower Body Mass Index than someone that does not. Not only that you are going to give your body optimal time to recover from that gnarly i-motion gym session.
What is the ‘right’ amount of sleep for you as an individual?
That is the important factor, you are an individual, and you have your own requirements. According to the Sleep Foundation, and as a rough guideline, no adult should be having any less than seven hours kip a night. But what if you feel lethargic and tired after seven hours? Then have more! You are an individual and the amount of sleep you need may depend on:
- Whether you naturally need more sleep as an individual.
- If you have any short or long term health issues; Whether it’s a cold or something more serious, your body may need to recover or rest and repair for longer than others.
- If you have had a big workout or endurance session; if you have you may have damaged muscle tissue (you do every time you workout) your body is more efficient at repairing these tissues in sleep because it is basically doing less elsewhere!
- What food and drink you have consumed that day; some foods are conducive to helping you sleep whilst others will keep you awake.
Foods that help you sleep
Here are some foods that help you to sleep and could be good additions to your individual diet:
- Grapefruit, Tomatoes and Watermelon all contain Lycopene, which is a natural antioxidant, and also helps fight cancer and heart disease.
- Almonds, Kale and Bananas all contain Magnesium which is a natural relaxant therefore allowing your body to sleep longer. Magnesium also helps repair muscle quicker meaning you sleep more effectively.
- Low Fat Yoghurt contains good bacteria that will work hard whilst you sleep; it also contains Calcium that is proven to de-stress the body and mind helping you to get a good nights kip!
One thing is for certain, sleep is important to fuel you for your day-to-day activities, whether that is work, parenting or learning, sleep is essential to be able to operate effectively and think efficiently. Yet statistics show that the average human being is sleeping less, but why? The most common culprit is technology; we live in an era where technology is ever present and constant. This is proving to have an influence on sleep patterns. The empowering factor here is to turn it off and be disciplined, just like in your diet and exercise management; Be sure to treat sleep as an important part of your lifestyle and fitness regime and it will repay you endlessly. If you want more help and guidance on sleep please visit:
If you are interested in realising some personal fitness goals then why not give i-motion gym a try? We have membership that starts from just £9.99 a month, over 90 classes a week, 24 hour access and state of the art equipment. No excuses, just results… www.i-motiongym.com/join
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