Monday, February 21, 2011

Rest = Recovery

When you plan your week, including work, family and fitness - do you make sure that you program enough sleep as well? My guess would be that the answer is "no" - or, perhaps something as grand as "I'll sleep when I'm dead", said half-jokingly.

Well, the truth is that you may be hampering your enjoyment of life by taking this approach - in a very cruel twist of irony, in your effort to take life for all it's worth, you're actually getting less out of it.

How much sleep a person needs is, by and large, determined by the individual. Some may be fine on 6 hours, while others need as much as 9 hours. This fluctuates as you get older and can also be influenced greatly by what you're doing during the day (the more physical effort you're putting forward, the more sleep you'll need). But the mistake that many of us make is in seeing sleep as an option - something to be squeezed in when you have those open moments. However, given how important it is, I propose you take a different approach to it - and make an appointment for yourself on a daily basis with the Sandman. Figure out what your optimal amount of sleep is in a day, then schedule that time, like you would an appointment with a trainer, a client or a banker. Then - follow through on that commitment.

Just like proper nutrition is key in a successful fitness program, so is getting enough sleep - trying to "tough it out" is like running a marathon on an insufficient amount of fuel... at some point you're going to hit the wall.

~Guy

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