A good night’s sleep is probably the number one thing you can use to guarantee more gains and better results from your bodybuilding lifestyle. The benefits of sleeping are numerous, and not just for bodybuilders.
Sleeping makes you more insulin sensitive. We know that insulin is anabolic and being more sensitive to it will help you lose fat. As a result, it makes you leaner and helps you get stronger and get more hypertrophy. This is not to mention that sleeping is when our body recovers by repairing the muscles we damaged during a workout.
Essentially, if you’re going to sacrifice one hour of sleep and wake up early in the morning to do an extra hour of cardio, you’re actually not going to lose fat that way–you’re going to lose muscles instead.
1. Make Sure You Have a Set Sleep Schedule
We’re going to sound like nagging mothers here. However, having a set sleeping schedule is essential to improving your sleep. You want your body to get used to passing out at a certain time, because this will help regulate your sleep.
That’s because your body doesn’t know by itself when it should go to sleep, and having a sporadic sleeping schedule means your body will never program its circadian rhythms so that it’s in the habit of falling asleep at a certain time.
Studies show that you should get into the habit of scheduling your body to sleep at around 10PM and wake up at around 5AM. But whatever schedule you choose, make sure to keep it the same every day to maximize your gains and improve your sleep.
One of the easiest ways to make sure you’re sleepy by the time it hits 10PM is to wear blue light blocking glasses. These are the glasses that block blue light–which comes from computer, phone, and TV screens–from affecting you.
Blue light is what signals our bodies to stay up, so if you put on blue light-blocking glasses, studies show that you’ll fall asleep easier. People who can’t fall asleep often admit that they are looking at blue light-emitting devices at night, whether that’s their phones, computers, or TVs.
2. Set Your Phone to “Do Not Disturb”
Unless you’re a supernaturally heavy sleeper, you’ll want to turn off the sound on your phone, or even put it on “do not disturb” mode while you’re asleep. The most important thing is that you do not want to allow sound to disrupt your sleep.
If you’re sleeping and you’re woken up all of a sudden at 3AM because somebody called you or sent you a notification, you’re much less likely to fall back asleep. Even if you do fall asleep, it’s likely to be fitful.
You should never have to look at your phone while you’re asleep, because that screws up your sleep. Try setting your phone to automatically go into DND mode between 10PM and 5AM.
3. Get Blackout Curtains
Remember how we spoke about making sure that you don’t look at blue light too close to bedtime because that keeps you up at night? That applies to all light when you’re sleeping. In a perfect world, if you lay down to sleep at 2PM, your room shouldn’t look any different than when it’s 2AM.
The way to do that is to get blackout curtains that block any light from entering your room. This also means avoiding vintage alarm clocks that beep and flash with light at night or keeping your windows cracked so the light can come in.
You can easily add 2-3 hours of sleep just by doing this. Say you got less than 8 hours of sleep during any given night– use blackout curtains to catch up on sleep during the day. Improving your sleep will help you grow, improve your insulin sensitivity, and help you lose more fat.
We hope you enjoyed reading all about the top 3 ways to immediately improve your sleep. We’re looking forward to seeing you again in the next article!