It’s unfortunate that the large majority of people interested in achieving greater fitness results that read this will regard the information as not being applicable to them and ignore this one simple suggestion that could have a dramatic effect on their physical development and overall health. Or worse, they know the information directly relates to their needs but they won’t follow it anyway. Not to go off on a tangent but we as humans have this strange way of ignoring things that seem too simple. Maybe we just want things to be difficult so if we don’t follow through we don’t feel distressed by it. Who knows? But for those that will follow through and appreciate that the little things add up here’s the suggestion. Get thirty more minutes of sleep each night. (Insert sound of crickets)
This recommendation is so simple that some of you are questioning whether or not it’s worth reading any further. But if you do I promise another gleaming piece of insight that has a bit more of a complicated (but not too difficult to understand) twist, will come out of it. In fact before I lose you, let me just give you the “complicated” piece right now. The reason why an extra thirty minutes of sleep each night can impact your fitness results is grounded in the science of stress physiology.
Our ability to physically develop and grow stronger hinges on how fully we recover from the stress of exercise as well as any other external and internal stressors. Yes Virginia, exercise IS a stress. If you’re smart about how you structure your exercise you are doing only that which will have the greatest impact on your muscular development, strength, and functionality, as well as your metabolism. In a nutshell, weight training is the center of your exercise universe. You are also focused on doing the least amount of exercise necessary to get the desired result because you recognize the importance of having plenty of recovery time.
Assuming that your workouts are effective enough in signaling the body to get stronger and develop then the only thing you need to do is allow the process to unfold by resting. Going to bed just thirty minutes earlier adds up to three and a half extra hours of recovery time each week. That’s one hundred eighty-two hours in a year! Given the amount of stress our bodies are under do you think this could make a difference? Test it and tell me.