Welcome back for part 2.  I’m going to finish up here with the fourth and fifth things I learned about sleep’s impact on our athletic performance.

Click here if you missed part 1.

Again, here are the articles I studied and learned from.  Feel free to check them out for yourself.

Extra Sleep Improves Athletic Performance
Sleep And High Performance: What Olympic Athletes Know About Sleep.
How to Sleep Like an Olympic Athlete
The Importance of Sleep for Better Athletic Performance
Sleep Deprivation Can Hinder Sports Performance

Let’s wrap this up.

Lesson #4: Alcohol Does NOT Help You Sleep; At Least Not for Long.

 

Now this one was a huge shocker to me.  I’ve always been under the impression that drinking helps you sleep.

In actuality it does.  At least initially.

Dr. McNally says alcohol makes you sleepy initially, but as your as your blood alcohol levels drop over time, your sleep gets disrupted, which keeps you from sleeping soundly.

News to me.

 

Lesson #5: Muscle Recovery Requires Sound Sleep

 

Now I’m sure you knew that muscle recovery takes place while you’re sleeping, but did you know why?

I didn’t.  In The Importance of Sleep for Better Athletic Performance, I found out that, other than the moment in time right after we finish working out, HGH is at it’s highest level when we’re sleep!

HGH, or Human Growth Hormone, which I’m sure you’ve heard of, helps our muscles recover, helps keep us young, and even aids our immune systems, amongs a lot other benefits.

NOTE: I am not condoning the use of banned substances.  I am talking strictly, and only, about the HGH that’s produced in our bodies naturally.

Just wanted to make that clear.

So there you have it, proof from credible medical people that sleep indeed helps your performance, on and off the field.

Kinda makes me wonder…

If I would’ve went to bed at a decent time, instead of staying up late playing NBA 2K back in college, would I have made it to the NFL?

Probably not.

Anyways, catch me on Twitter!  @alvingrier
 

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