Then, 3 x 12 (total) reverse lunges @ 50% of today’s 2RM
Post loads to comments and BTWB
“Man, you look tired.” Said to me by anyone on any given day, because I am, in fact, tired.
By Courtney “I don’t need no stinking sleep” Shepherd and Rachel Grumman Bender
Several months ago I took the CrossFit Football Seminar and heard something I’ve heard before but for some reason really hit home this time. When discussing training the instructor stated very matter of factly, “Your gut is the window to your immune system. Your immune system is what allows you to come into the gym every day and train, which is why what you eat is so important. Following that is the importance of sleep.” What I’m about to say will make people laugh, like when I tell you a workout is intended to be done in 10 minutes or less, but we should all be getting 7+ hours of sleep per night. I know, I know, laughable. Especially for those with children, multiple jobs, jobs with unique hours of operation, etc. We can put as many excuses in front of it as we need to but it doesn’t change the fact that not getting enough sleep has an impact on us, and not just our immune system.
Sleep deprivation is so common and pervasive these days that it’s now considered a public health epidemic, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). But how much sleep is enough? Researchers now have an answer: The American Academy of Sleep Medicine and the Sleep Research Society gathered a panel of 15 experts in sleep medicine and research and concluded that seven hours is the magic number when it comes to the minimum amount of sleep adults need to stay healthy.
The problem is, nearly 30 percent of adults are sleeping less than six hours per night, according to the CDC. But what exactly happens to your body when you get less than six hours of shut-eye? Is it that bad? In a word, yes.
Your Mental Capacities
When you don’t get enough, the mental effects are immediate. They range from having a harder time concentrating and making decisions to having headaches and struggling to remember things, which can impact your life both personally (forgetting a friend’s birthday) and professionally (blanking mid-presentation in front of your boss).
Your ability to react quickly also slows down when you’re exhausted — which results in making mistakes. We first lose our speed, and then we lose the accuracy. There are multiple studies that show being deprived — even if it’s four hours of sleep — can make someone have the same reaction time as someone who is driving under the influence. Driving while sleep-deprived is the equivalent of driving drunk.
Your ability to regulate and control your emotions, as well as [cope] with change, are affected. That’s a nice way of saying that you’re more likely to be grouchy and irritable when you’re short on sleep. Research shows that getting less than five hours of sleep at night can make you feel more stressed, sad, and angry.
One study involving 3,000 adults over the age of 45 found that those who slept under six hours each night were nearly twice as likely to have a stroke or heart attack compared to adults who logged six to eight hours per night, according to the National Sleep Foundation. They were also 1.6 times more likely to have congestive heart failure. Another small study conducted by Mayo Clinic researchers found that not getting enough shut-eye significantly raises blood pressure at night.
Your Blood Sugar Levels
Blood sugar levels are affected, too. In one study, healthy men who were restricted to four hours of sleep six nights in a row showed impaired glucose tolerance — a prediabetic condition.
Your Immune System
Anyone who has ever gotten a cold shortly after pulling an all-nighter knows that sleepless nights can also weaken your immune system. A recent study found that people who slumber for six hours or less at night are four times more likely to catch a cold when exposed to the virus, compared to those who sleep more than seven hours each night. People who are sleep deprived may not be able to mount the same type of immune response as someone fully replete on their sleep.
Missing out on sleep may also be the reason your skinny jeans are feeling a little tighter these days. Being just shy of two hours of your usual amount sleep at night can slow down your metabolism. And other research shows it can rev up your appetite: A study published in the Journal of Sleep Research found that just one night of not getting enough sleep raises ghrelin levels — the hormone that signals hunger to the brain.
A lack of shut-eye also affects your appearance. There’s a reason they call it beauty sleep: A 2013 study in the appropriately named journal Sleep found that people rated photos of sleep-deprived adults as looking less than their best — with redder eyes, darker under-eye circles, and more fine lines and wrinkles — compared to photos of the same adults when they were well-rested. The study participants even went on to say that the adults in the photos looked sadder when they were sleep-deprived, than after a good night’s sleep.
Your Love Life
As if that weren’t enough, sleep deprivation can even mess with your relationship. Couples have a harder time resolving conflicts and have more frequent and serious fights when they don’t get enough sleep, according to a 2013 study published in the journal Social Psychological and Personality Science.
So from not looking our best, to being super crabby, forgetting everyone’s birthday, and driving like we are drunk. . . perhaps it is in our best interest to put our phones down, turn the TVs off, and lay down in our beds as early as we can to get as much sleep as we can, if not for our sake, for the sake of those around us. #nomoreexcuses #gotobed
*This Saturday Verve is hosting the Lift Up Autism workout. Get signed up on their web page by clicking here AND sign up on Verve’s schedule page to reserve a spot in class. Friends and family of all ages/ abilities are welcome.