Sleep is every bit as important as diet and exercise when it comes to getting in shape, yet in the fast and furious pace of modern living it is normally the first to be neglected.
Good sleep helps us stay lean, strong and energetic. Bad sleep makes it hard for us to lose body fat, increases our food cravings, slows down our recovery from exercise, depletes our energy and blunts our brain power.
Easy to say but as someone who has suffered terribly from insomnia in the past I know all too well that getting a good nights sleep is not always easy. Here are some tips which might help you along your way:
- Sleep in a completely dark room
- Sleep in a cooler room or with an open window
- Do a brain-dump by exporting thoughts, tasks and jobs in your head onto paper
- Minimise computer, tablet and smart phone time in the hours before bed
- Create a routine and be consistent
- Kick the afternoon and evening caffeine
- Where possible eliminate sources of destructive stress in your life
- Avoid big meals too close to bedtime
- Meditation and mindfulness
Good sleep is the glue which holds all the other pieces of the fitness puzzle together, don’t underestimate its power and influence on your waistline and well-being.