Have you invested hour after hour researching fitness and made significant lifestyle changes (including your diet and exercising plan), and yet, you are not losing weight for some reason? Don’t worry, you are not alone! In fact, many people have experienced significant unsuccessful attempts in their weight loss and fitness journey because there is one factor that most people overlook, which is sleep. The HIIT Club discusses and helps us understand why getting proper sleep is important in order to loose weight.
Did you know that lack of sleep not only increases hunger but it also affects the body’s metabolism negatively? Unfortunately, these things are essential ingredients for steady weight loss. Therefore, if you are struggling to lose weight despite all your efforts and you’ve already assessed your eating habits and workout regimen, perhaps it is time to consider your sleep patterns.
You can ask yourself: Are you going to bed at a reasonable time? How many hours of uninterrupted sleep are you getting? Do you wake up repeatedly over the course of the night? Do you find yourself feeling drained and lethargic during the day? These are all important questions that can help you determine if your sleep patterns could be your culprit.
There are two main reasons why sleep loss can be damaging to any workout. First of all, lack of sleep results in fat storage. This process interferes with the body’s ability to metabolize carbohydrates naturally (carbs produce sugar, which leads to the build-up of body fat). Secondly, when you do not get the proper amount of sleep, cortisol levels increase (which is a hormone that regulates appetite). This causes you to feel hungry even if you are eating enough throughout the day.
It is a fact that quality sleep is just as important as eating right and getting adequate exercise. Your sleep is also relevant because when you work out, your muscles need proper rest in order to recover from workouts and avoid injuries. It is important to allow your body to repair itself to be ready for the next workout.
Now that we understand the importance of sleep a little better and if you feel that your sleep patterns may be affecting your ability to lose weight effectively, you can try the following things to improve your sleep patterns and/or quality of sleep:
- Make sure to keep your bedroom dark and quiet.
- Avoid electronics such as watching television, web surfing or catching up on your Facebook right before you are going to sleep. You don’t want to stimulate your senses, you want to calm and relax them.
- Avoid exercising before bedtime because exercise released natural endorphins and when your endorphins are pumping, you feel energized and excited, which makes it hard to relax and fall asleep.
- Allow yourself alt least three hours to unwind before bedtime.
- Try meditating or breathing exercises prior to your bedtime. This is a very effective way to help your body relax and prepare for a good night sleep.
- Avoid eating a meal or snacking right before you go to bed because it is difficult to fall asleep on a full stomach because your body is busy working hard to metabolize the food and produce energy.
- Naps; naps are great and can be beneficial but they can also inhibit your ability to fall asleep at night so with that in mind, nap smart.
There are so many factors that contribute to successful weight loss and perhaps this was the missing puzzle to your weight loss formula. We hope that you found this article informative and helpful and that you succeed in your weight loss and fitness journey. For more information about effective weight loss, contact The HIIT Club, we are more than happy to answer any questions you may have!