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How Does Sleep Affect Exercise Recovery?


By Dina Summers

Have you been browsing through articles on improving your sleep lately? Is it because your fitness trainer advised you to do so? Or, maybe you can't go to sleep due to sore muscles?

Whatever the reason you're here, if you’ve been struggling to get quality sleep after exercising, don’t give up yet. You can get a perfect night's sleep if you use some simple techniques and a sleeping aid, like a weighted blanket, that can drastically improve your sleep quality. Check out this product page to find the best blanket for you.

Multiple researchers state that sleep is crucial for exercise recovery, and that muscles grow while you sleep. So every athlete needs at least eight (8) hours of sleep to recover and build muscle. Skipping or avoiding this required sleep time can have an adverse impact on your performance. Continue reading to get detailed insights!

The Need for Exercise Recovery

During exercise, an individual’s body works excessively. When exercising, you use more energy than the amount needed to execute daily life activities. As a result, the body remains under load and stress.

Thus, to continue exercising without damaging your body, one needs to recover all that is lost. You need to gain back those calories and energy used up when working out.

Here are the ways exercise recovery helps:

  • It allows your body to restore its condition before being subjected to the next round of exercise;
  • It improves your performance;
  • Since your body recovers, it reduces the chances of damage and injuries caused by excessive stress.

How Does Sleep Help Exercise Recovery?

Various factors contribute to exercise recovery including nutrition, hydration, stress management, etc. However, sleep tends to have the most significant impact.

The following positive changes occur in your body after quality sleep:

Your body releases important hormones

When you are in non-REM sleep, the body secretes muscle-building hormones that facilitate muscle growth. Thus, athletes and fitness enthusiasts can build their bodies.

Your body repairs damaged tissues and muscles

Certain exercises, such as weight lifting, put too much load on the muscles that create tears. During sleep, an individual’s body slows down other processes and can focus on these damages. It repairs and heals them, and this healing process builds muscle.

Sleep also relaxes the stressed muscles and reduces soreness. Hence, having quality sleep helps you wake up feeling refreshed and pain-free.

Your body enhances mental capabilities

As per one study, the consumption of sufficient quality sleep helped athletes increase their accuracy from 35.7 to 41.8-percent. This shows that sleep helps a person focus and perform better. You can make strategic decisions quicker and perform efficiently in the field.

Your body prevents potential illness

When you sleep, the body creates special molecules called cytokines. These molecules assist the immune system in fighting against diseases. Hence, sleep makes an athlete’s body strong and healthy.

Final Words

People, and athletes, who exercise without consuming sufficient sleep can damage their bodies in the long term. Your body will become exhausted and weak. You may even suffer from serious muscle spasms and coordination issues.

However, having the required sleep can work wonders. We hope this article has helped you process the importance of sleep on exercise recovery.


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