Are you an athlete or aspire to be one one day? If you answered yes, then taking your sleeping routine seriously should be a high priority of yours. Many people, including athletes, underrate how important sleeping is to their health. In fact, it is the third pillar of health, but yet it is treated almost as a nonentity.
If you are such a person, then the following are five truths that you need to know about sleep to change your mind.
1. Improves muscles
All the workouts and exercise routines that you are sweating your body through to develop muscles will all be useless if you do not get enough sleep.
We say that exercise strengthens muscles, but that is technically not true. Exercise causes micro tears and holes in your muscles which later get repaired when you sleep. It is during this repair period that muscles are expanded and made stronger. Growth hormones are also released when you sleep, causing your muscles (and other body organs) to grow and become stronger as well.
2. Improves mental health
The state of your mind during a game is very important. It could make the difference between losing and winning a game. A player who still feels he can win a game even though his score is down will be a bigger threat to the opposing player than one who has made up his mind that he cannot win.
When you awake from a good night’s sleep, you feel refreshed and feel as if you can conquer the world. If you were to have this same feeling on the day of your game, you would almost be unbeatable in your sport.
3. Reduces fatigue
Most times before you sleep, you usually feel tired and fatigued. As an athlete, you should not ignore this sign or postpone what you know you need to do, which is get enough sleep. Fatigue is a sign that your body needs to recharge because it has been going on for a long time, and your body needs a break now. The amount of fatigue that you feel is a good indicator of of how much you need to get a proper amount of sleep.
4. Reduces the chances of disease
When you sleep, your body reboots and replenishes all body systems, including the immune system. This gives them more materials and produces more white blood cells to fight off diseases that might shorten the duration of your athletic life.
5. You can sleep less than eight hours
The average person needs eight hours to sleep, but that may not be necessary for you. It depends on the quality of the sleep, how deep it was, the sleeping position, how much repair the body carries out and so on. Your own sleeping time may be less than or more than eight hours (mine is seven and a half hours), so do not stress that you will be spending a whole chunk of the day doing nothing but sleeping. You can manage less than eight hours of sleep just fine. However, don’t lessen your amount of sleep too much. You should get at least six to seven hours of sleep every night on a regular basis.
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