We may be in bed at the right time and up at the right time, but are we really sleeping?
How do you feel when you awake each morning?
Are you refreshed or tired?
Do you experience day time sleepiness?
What Are The Stages of Sleep?
Sleep has been traditionally divided into 4 categories: awake, light, deep, and REM sleep. Each one plays an essential role in maintaining your mental and physical health.
I can tell you that whether you train or not, sleep matters and so does the quality of that sleep to allow for our body to repair and reset for the next day. Every night we not only want to reset our bodies, but reset our minds and emotions too.
Sleep is as important to our health as eating, drinking and breathing. It allows our bodies to repair themselves and our brains to consolidate our memories and process information. Poor sleep is linked to physical problems such as a weakened immune system and mental health problems such as anxiety and depression.
Lack of sleep is linked to a number of unfavorable health consequences including heart disease, type 2 diabetes, and depression. Some psychiatric conditions can cause sleep problems, and sleep disturbances can also exacerbate the symptoms of many mental conditions including depression, anxiety, and bipolar disorder.
We often times feel we lose a couple pound overnight or are at our “thinnest” in the mornings, but the fact is we are eliminating vapor through our breathing and sweating during the night that can result in a 1 to 3 pound weight loss.
Do you snore when you sleep?
How do you think that affects your overall health and body composition?
A lack of sleep can potentially reduce hormones that contribute to muscle development, inhibiting these changes in body composition. Furthermore, muscles can be affected not only by decreases in muscle-producing hormones, but increases in ones that do the opposite.
So if you are thinking that your health is being sabotaged by external factors, even though you are doing everything right in terms of being active and eating right, then perhaps you should take a look at your sleep schedule and quality. Are you sleeping enough and are the conditions you sleep in ideal? ie,. TV is on, temperature in the room, bad mattress or even a spouse that’s a very active sleeper. All of this can not only effect your sleep but the quality of life you experience when you are awake.
What Does A Normal Night Look Like?
The amount of each phase of sleep can vary significantly between nights and individuals. During an ideal night’s sleep, your body has enough time to go through four to five 90-minute cycles that sample different phases of sleep as the night progresses.
In general, each cycle moves sequentially through each stage of sleep: wake, light sleep, deep sleep, REM, and repeat. Cycles earlier in the night tend to have more deep sleep while later cycles have a higher proportion of REM. By the final cycle, your body may even choose to skip deep sleep altogether.