I’ll admit it, instead of getting up when I should have this morning, I pulled the covers up and slept for another hour! And boy did it feel good. It was cold out, and warm in bed and I was tired. I think the extra hour of sleep helped with my running this morning though. Lately, I have not been feeling motivated to run. I go out every day, but it’s only because Wrigley sits and stares at me with his sad eyes and makes me get up and take him on his run. He’s extrememly difficult to resist.
So, this morning, I have been doing some research on the sleep needs of a person training for a marathon. (Or triathlon, or 5K, or whatever a person happens to be training for.) Here are some key things that I read which I already knew, it’s just nice to have them refreshed in your memory.
- Getting enough sleep boosts your immune system. These days, when the Swine Flu, other flu strains and scores of colds are running rampant, a strong immune system is critical.
- Getting enough sleep improves athletic performance. Since I’m training for a marathon and future triathlons, good athletic performance seems important.
- Getting enough sleep improves mental clarity. Having a fit mind is important while training because you are more in tune with your feelings, both physical and mental.
- Getting enough sleep improves your attitude. Some days, the only thing keeping you going is a smile and a good attitude. Being rested ensures that you will be able to go the extra mile.
For all of these, the term “enough sleep” was used. So, how much is enough? It varies from person to person, but the average is from 7 - 8 hours a night. Reserach has shown that adults that get much more or less than 7 good hours of sleep a night have a higher mortality rate. Adults who sleep closer to 7 hours have lower mortality rates.
And remember – quality counts too!