Thursday, January 21, 2010

Sleep (Or the lack thereof)

Lately I'd rather stay in bed than go to the gym. Maybe not the smartest weight loss move, but if you're lacking on sleep you could be hurting yourself in more ways than being irritable.

You should sleep 7 to 9 hours a night. Here are the benefits if you do:

Fewer colds - rest improves immunity, too little impairs it.

Lower number on the scale - People who slept 7-9 hours had an average BMI of 24.8, almost 2 points lower than those who slept less.

Lower risk of heart disease and diabetes - those who slept less than 5 hours per night had a 500 times greater risk of high blood pressure and were 3 times likelier to have diabetes.

So don't skip your workout to sleep, but do go to bed at a decent time (easy to do with small children, haha), dim the lights before bedtime, avoid the TV and computer before bedtime, and try some yoga or meditation to help you sleep more deeply.

Now if I could just figure out how to keep my boys from interrupting my night's sleep, maybe I could make it to the gym!



"Sleep! It's Non-Negotiable," Prevention Magazine, February 2010, www.prevention.com

6 comments:

  1. Winter is a tough time for me to get out of bed in the mornings to exercise. (I like 6 AM workouts.) I've been better about going to 8:50 AM classes, but earlier works out better. Sigh. Glad to know that my extra bits of shut-eye aren't harmful -- quite the opposite. BTW, my BMI may not follow the stats you quoted, but pretty much everything else does. Diabetes runs on both sides of my family. And I don't have it. And I'm trying hard to keep it that way. It's nice knowing that getting good sleep may help too. Thanks for the info!

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  2. SLEEP is SO IMPORTANT! I recently read an article in FITNESS that those training for an endurance event needed 10 hours of sleep per day!
    I laughed and then grimaced thinking how nice that would be. We are striving for 7 1/2 or 8 at best!!!
    Just think in a few more months you'll be lucky to get 3 hours straight!! Oh how fun!
    Hugs to you.

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  3. You're welcome, Christie. The diabetes scares me as well (my daddy has it). It's always good to have a kick in the pants for more reasons than looking good!

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  4. Thanks, Roxy for the reminder! So I'm treating pregnancy as an endurance event and seriously sleeping 8-9 hours a night and then taking a nap. How pathetic is that? No wonder I can't get anything done.
    Enjoy that marathon training. I have such wonderful memories, but maybe it's one of those things that is more fun to remember!

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  5. I agree with this post 100%. Sleep is VERY important to our well being!

    I have an award for you HERE

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  6. Thanks, Vicki for the sweet award. I feel honored to be a part of that.

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