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sleepAny athlete knows the importance of getting a good night’s sleep. Not only does getting a restful night of sleep make an athlete feel their best, but it also plays a tremendous role in athletic performance. While knowing that sleep is important for overall fitness and recovery may seem easy, being able to execute and actually catch those “zzz’s” may be a completely different story.

Over 40 million Americans suffer from chronic sleep issues including sleep apnea, high cortisol levels, and low blood sugar. These sleep issues can affect overall energy levels and mood. So what can you do to make sure that you are getting the sleep you need? The Marc Pro team has some helpful tips to ensure that you are getting your best night’s sleep so that you can maximize your recovery and be awake for the training you love the most!

Do Not Go to Sleep Hungry

If you feel hungry when you go to sleep, then you are already doing your body a disservice before hitting the hay. Low blood sugar levels actually keep your body in a catabolic state during the night. In-turn, the anabolic process that aids in muscle repair is delayed, causing an athlete to recover less quickly during the night. Try having a snack before bed that is high in protein, but doesn’t make you too full, such as milk or cheese.

Schedule Hard Workouts for Earlier in the Day

A hard workout is a guaranteed way to make you tired, however elevated cortisol levels post-workout can keep you from falling asleep. Cortisol is produced by the adrenal glands and increases during exercise. If you are typically a night-owl workout fiend, consider shifting your workouts to earlier in the day (or at least three hours before bedtime) to allow your cortisol levels to drop.

Do You Know Your Gallbladder and Liver?

The gallbladder is the most active during the hours of 11pm and 1am. It is responsible for digesting fats and is also impacted by caffeine. As a result, if you are consuming bad fats or caffeinated drinks, your gallbladder could be keeping you awake. The liver is most active between 1am and 3am, so consider avoiding alcoholic drinks to help you rest through the night.

Stick to the Same Sleeping Schedule

In order to maximize the amount of rest that you are getting, stick to the same schedule everyday (including weekends). This schedule will allow for your body to maximize the amount of rest that you are getting, and prep you for the next workout or competition.

Sleep is a critical component of any athlete’s training, as sleep allows for strengthening and improvement to occur during the recovery process (which is similar to how the Marc Pro works). If you are having chronic issues sleeping, consider speaking with your doctor to ensure that you are pinpointing the areas that may be of concern.