The 2019 CrossFit Games have wrapped up with functional fitness fans witnessing the world’s fittest athletes compete in Madison, Wisconsin.
Over the week long competition, we saw competitors exert their bodies in all kinds of ways, testing their strength, endurance, and physical capabilities. What we didn’t see, however, is just how much rest/sleep they had off the competition floor. It is quite easier for us to forget just how much rest and sleep CrossFit Games athletes need to be able to perform at the level they do. It is also easy for us to forget just how important sleep is for athletes in general!
A good night’s sleep will help the nervous, as well as the musculoskeletal system, to recover and recharge overnight. Many studies have shown that a lack of sleep impairs our ability to think, maintain a healthy immune system, handle stress and moderate our emotions. So without sleep, it is tough for an athlete to perform at the best.
It is no wonder then, why we have seen sleep become a crucial part of many CrossFitter’s routine and training regime. Not only are they specifically programming it into their weekly schedule, but they are also putting a lot of research into finding the best bed for them. In addition, they are also spending time researching beds and using sites like mattress genius to ensure they are getting the best sleep possible.
How Much Sleep do CrossFit Athletes Need?
While there is no magical number of hours sleep CrossFit athletes need, it is generally believed that anywhere between 7-9 hours of sleep is sufficient. Any less and you may be depriving your body. Any more and you may be ‘over-sleeping’ and causing other issues to your body.
Here are some other reasons why sleep is essential for CrossFit athletes:
Lowers Risk of Injuries
Athletes are prone to get injured while working out. Fatigue will affect your reaction time and end up failing to prevent injuries during workout. When you are not tired, you will be able to do things as expected as well as pay attention to details.
If you don’t get enough sleep, you are likely to gain more weight. You will also train less and always be tired. Hormone production is greatly affected, if you don’t get enough sleep. Hormones such as leptin and the growth hormone won’t work as expected and you’ll lose your weight-loss battle.
Increased Tissue Repair and Growth
Most Crossfit workouts cause tissue damage and you need good sleep to repair these damaged tissues. The effective healing of muscles after workouts is what builds strength in many athletes. Most of the growth hormones are produced when sleeping, and so, if you are getting enough sleep, your damaged tissues will heal easily and fast.
Better sleep guarantees improved metabolism. Once your body gets enough sleep, it becomes easy to maintain a balanced hormone production. This increases basal metabolic rate, be able to control your appetite as well as cuts down chances of developing metabolic syndrome.
Will be Hard to Get Sick
Athletes need to be healthy all the time. If you are getting enough sleep, your body will be able to perform all the important roles and keep it in the best condition. You will have a strong immune system that can fight any form of illness or diseases and stay healthy.
Have Better Mental Health
Athletes need to be physically and mentally stable all the time. Lack of sleep is associated with stress and depression, and in most cases leads to mental health problems. So, you need to sleep more and eat efficiently.
Sleep is a crucial facet of your daily life. For CrossFit athletes it is important that you get sufficient sleep every night to ensure you can achieve a high level of performance when training and/or competing.
If you have trouble sleeping at home, there are ways you can fight this problem. You can embrace some home remedies. Go to bed early, limit the amount of light in your room, avoid drugs and drink more water. Significantly, as CrossFit athlete can always seek help from fitness coaches and experts in the field.