Sleep and Bodybuilding

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sleep and bodybuilding

Sleep and Bodybuilding

Sleep and bodybuilding – to have one without the other is impossible. You go to the gym to set the stage, but the real body change happens at night when you’re sleeping. That’s when your body is busy shuffling resources around and rebuilding what you’ve broken down during your workouts. If you aren’t getting enough sleep, you’ll be too tired to make any gains at the gym. It’s a common reason why a lot of people hit plateaus early on.

Sleep is essential. You should be getting more of it than you think you are. If you don’t have enough time to get at least 8 hours of sleep in a day, you might as well not do P90X. To be honest, you might as well not do much of anything else either (just kidding…at least do SOMETHING and do what you can with P90X! :-) ).  Tons of research shows that both mental and physical performance drops as we get less sleep.

Sleep and bodybuilding is like a peanut butter and jelly sandwich. One doesn’t go without the other. Read on to find out the 5 signs you aren’t getting enough sleep, and how to get the best of sleep and bodybuilding…

5 Signs That You Aren’t Getting Enough Sleep – Sleep and Bodybuilding

You need an alarm to wake up: I know this is a controversial one, but it’s totally true. If you need an alarm clock to wake up in the morning, you aren’t getting enough sleep. Now some people are going to say they just can’t get up without an alarm, but I think that’s a handy excuse for failing to sleep enough. If you’re one of these people, just try going to bed a few hours earlier, and I think you’ll notice the difference right away. Pretty soon you won’t need that alarm clock.

You’re falling asleep at your desk in the afternoon: I admit I get tired occasionally and sometimes take a cat nap in the afternoon, but if it’s a constant thing for you, you’re not getting enough sleep. If you can, it’s better to sleep more at night and then take a run in the afternoon to refresh yourself. You’ll get back to work feeling way more energized than otherwise.

You find yourself losing your temper or snapping at people more often: It happens to me whenever I’m really tired. I think I know why. When you’re really tired, your body hasn’t rebuilt your defenses to the outside world. As a result, loud music is louder and annoying people are more irritating than they usually are. So instead of snapping at them again (even though the music really is loud), take a hint. That’s your body telling you it’s time to get more rest.

You’re a lot more hungry than usual: Yet another sign that you aren’t getting enough sleep. Studies show that sleep deprived people have lower leptin levels. Leptin is a hormone that puts a check on your hunger levels, telling you to stop feeling hungry. In fact, people who sleep less often have higher levels of ghrelin, a hormone that stimulates appetite. So if you’re overeating, sleep may be the reason why.

How To Sleep More And Get The Most Out Of Your Workouts – Sleep and Bodybuilding

First of all, the most important thing is to realize that you’re tired in the first place. Just follow the standard medical advice. If you aren’t getting 8 hours of sleep, you need to sleep more. If you are trying to get 8 hours of sleep, but you still can’t fall asleep fast enough, then the following sleep and bodybuilding tips are for you.

1.) Turn off all distractions before you go to sleep. Studies show that people who look at screens before going to sleep tend to have less restful sleep than those who don’t. My advice? Read a book or do something relaxing before you go to bed.

Drinking Beer2.) Say no to caffeine and booze. If you’re already having a few drinks a day, P90X won’t do much of anything for you anyway. Caffeine and alcohol affect your ability to sleep at night, and more importantly, they make it difficult for your body to recover properly. If you notice yourself tossing and turning at 5 A.M. after a night out, you’ve had too much to drink. Avoiding caffeine AND booze will benefit your sleep and bodybuilding.

3.) Be careful with catnaps. I love catnaps. They’re a great way to get a little energy boost when you’re tired in the middle of the day. Unfortunately, catnaps tend to get longer and longer when you make them a daily routine. Pretty soon, you’re napping for two hours straight. That’s not good, my friend. It will have a negative impact on your ability to sleep that following night. Try to make your catnaps less than 30 minutes for maximum effectiveness.

It’s time to be real with yourself. Constantly hitting the snooze button is not normal. It’s not a personality thing or anything we tell ourselves it is. It means your tired. It means you need to sleep more. The best thing I ever did was get rid of my alarm clock. If you show up at work a few minutes late because of it, you’ll just learn to adjust your sleep schedule accordingly.

If you cheat on sleep, you’re cheating on your workouts. Simple as that.

Images: Ambro /

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