Lifestyle Sports

The importance of sleep for a (top) athlete

9 July 2019

The importance of sleep for a (top) athlete

You might have already heard many times how important sleep can be for you. Getting enough hours of sleep and especially good quality of sleep has many benefits for you during the day. Interested in why getting enough and good sleep is so important for an athlete? Keep reading!

A few benefits of a good night rest

  1. Better concentration. If you had a good night of sleep it will be easier for you to concentrate. Most people might have experienced the situation of driving a car while being a bit tired. That makes you not 100% alert on things happening around you. The same thing happens if you train while being tired, you will not perform at your best! Also this is very important to prevent injuries.
  2. Memory. If you are fit and slept well, your memory will perform better. Are you trying to learn some new skills? This will work better if you had enough rest!
  3. Recovery. Just had a tough practice? Recovery is very important for athletes. If your body doesn’t recover well, you will not train very efficient. You will mostly recover during the night. Try to take some slow proteins before you go to bed to give your body enough nutrients for the night.
  4. Feeling fresh and fit. After a good night of rest you must feel fresh to start the new day! If you have sleeping problems or a bed that isn’t very comfortable you might get some small head and/or back aches.

So what is a good night of rest?

Now we know that sleeping good has many benefits. But how do we achieve a good night? First of all this depends on the individual. Different people have different needs. On an average you will need to sleep 7-9 hours each night. It is nice if you have some kind of routine in this and go to bed and get out of bed around the same time every day. Besides that it is very important to have a nice bed/mattress. I will come back to that later.

A morning person?

Are you a morning person or not? I am, and I am happy to be so! However many people have trouble with mornings. Being a morning or evening kind of person mostly is determined by our genes and habits. While we cannot change our genes, we can change our habits! Going to bed a bit earlier and getting enough rest will help you with an easier morning routine!

Trouble with falling asleep

Many people have experienced this once or more often. Trouble sleeping. Actually I have been there and have had a period where I couldn’t sleep night after night. At some point you get more and more frustrated which definitely is not going to help you with it. The thing that have helped for me has been Mindfulness. I am not a very spiritual person and always said these things were bullshit until I received the (Dutch) book “Mindgym”. After having the book for a while and never reading it I gave it a try. Honestly I have been able to sleep wherever and whenever I wanted after practicing more Mindfulness. I’d say, give it a try!

The right bed and mattress

Another very important aspect is where you sleep on. I mean, you spend approximately 1/4-1/3 of your life in your bed so that should be comfortable! Recently I received a super super nice and new mattress from Club 9 and I slept so much better. The cool thing is that they have a subscription on their mattresses. This way you only pay from €9,99 per month instead of having to buy a super expensive mattress at once. After every five years you will receive a new mattress to make sure you will always sleep well! Use the code 58FV-V8XP-FG3Y for 5% off your mattress!

Ready to sleep!

So now you know of all the benefits of sleeping! Are you sleeping well or do you think you can improve something there? Let me know!

Love, Nathalie

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