When we think about getting the most out of our workouts the conversation usually revolves around the latest supplement, the best routines, and crafting the perfect diet. Sleep is an afterthought, despite mountains of research pointing to its importance. But it makes sense. When we think of working out, cultivating mass, and getting “ripped” it elicits thoughts of hard work, blood sweat, and tears. Not resting and relaxation. However, that’s the ultimate paradox, without sleep all of that effort can go to waste.
Sleep and exercise are closely linked and this intricate relationship is a two-way street. Yet the relationship is certainly more nuanced than it may appear. Sure, sleep helps you perform better in the gym and exercise helps you to not only fall asleep faster but also to enjoy better quality sleep overall. But exercise doesn’t just make you feel tired, it actually creates physiological change in the body. It can actually strengthen circadian rhythms by promoting alertness during the day and bringing on sleep at night. A study by the National Sleep Foundation found that people who exercised regularly were far more likely to report sleeping well on most nights when compared to people who were not physically active.
Additionally, getting that perfect amount of sleep to aid your training can also depend on other extenuating factors: Your routine before bed, your eating habits, the electronic devices you use and even the type of mattress you sleep on. In fact, because of all the specific elements that can factor into your training, your mattress shouldn’t be the thing ruining your performance.
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