When it comes to muscle gains, it’s a fine balance between things such as optimized amino acids and being kind to your body!
In part one, we explored why sleep is so advantageous to our bodies and in today’s post, we’ll examine the stages of sleep and how to get better sleep!
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- Stage one - This is the stage where our bodies are in transition from being awake and sleeping. It is non-REM sleep and for a healthy individual, the shortest phase in the sleep cycle.
- Stage two - This is the largest state of sleep, between 45 and 60 percent of our night, and it is non-REM sleep that is the foundation of a good night’s rest.
- Stages three and four - This is the delta sleep stage and responsible for 40 percent of our sleep time. Delta is a deep, restorative sleep wonderful for supporting our brain.
- REM - This is an active state of sleep (REM, rapid eye movement) and comprises 20 to 25 percent of sleep time. This is the stage where our brain activity, heart rates, and breathing become more rapid. The REM stage is important for athletes and fitness enthusiasts because this is where muscle growth can happen.
Although additional research needs to be done, there are some studies pointing to those who are physically active and putting more stress on their bodies in their workouts, require more sleep — somewhere between eight to 10 hours.
How To Set Your Body Up For Optimal Sleep
When it comes to sleep, there’s not a lot of crazy things to try — most of it is inherent and being able to listen to your body. Listed below are tips and considerations to get the nest night sleep and help your muscles recover and grow!
Have a consistent sleep schedule.
Being intentional with when you go to sleep and when you wake up, can really elevate not only your fitness game, but how you feel and function overall.
Work towards going to bed and waking up at the same time, consistently. Consistency is key, this doesn’t mean Monday through Friday you’re perfect and in by bed at 9 pm and up at 6 am, and then let it all go on the weekends. You have to stay consistent — the less consistent you are in your sleep patterns, the more chronic sleep problems may develop.
It’s also important to note the timeframe in which you wake up. We know that people work all kinds of crazy hours, but the more delayed daylight exposure your body has, the more it alters you sleep, and can then push back the next cycle — this is a very dangerous cycle to get into.
The takeaway: Stay consistent as best you can!
Get rid of the junk light before bed.
Junk light are the sources of light, mainly blue light from our electronics, there veer directly away from natural sources. Essentially these types of light tell your body it’s a different time of day, and this spells trouble when you’re trying to go to sleep.
One of the best practices to impart is to stop electronic use at least an hour before bed. Spend the next half hour before bed going through your routine and quiet your body by reading or doing something relaxing.
There are many more tips we want to share, but you’ll have to keep in touch and stay tuned for part three!
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