Everybody knows that sleep is very important and the baseline for most age groups is around eight hours per night. That’s the same to apply to swimmers. Sleeping for eight hours allows your body the necessary time to reset and recover from the day before. Of course, these amounts differ from person to person, because everybody is different and is doing different workouts
An aerobic-swimmer who is sleep-deprived will feel the effects more than a sprint-based swimmer who is also sleep-deprived, because their muscles need to endure a longer workout for a longer period of time, using energy the body most likely doesn’t have stored.
The National Sleep Foundation states that for teenagers, the recommended amount of sleep is eight to ten hours per night. Interestingly, the recommended amount of sleep is less for 18 to 25-year-olds and adults over 25, falling between seven to nine hours per night. Considering all of this information, for athletes (swimmers specifically), the perfect amount of sleep is anywhere from 9 to 10 hours of sleep in order to really get the best out of your workout.
Sleep is a vital need for our bodies. Sleep takes up one-third of a person’s life. During sleep, our bodies release important hormones to help metabolism, accumulate energy needed for daily activities and body growth, and help the brain to organize information systematically, establishes and strengthens the brain’s long-term memory abilities.
We all know that hydration and other proper supplements are essential for recovery from swimming, but sleep is one of the most often overlooked ingredients of too. recovery process. Especially during the tapered off period before joining a tournament.
“During the deeper stages of sleep, HGH (Human Growth hormone) – the growth hormone in the body is born,” said by Shelby Harris, a marathoner, and author of the book The Women’s Guide to Overcoming Insomnia. : Get a good sleep without relying on Medication (Norton Books, 2019).
HGH is a hormone produced by the pituitary gland and released into the bloodstream. HGH aids in muscle repair, bone development, and converting fats into energy. The less you sleep, the less GH Growth Hormone produces, affecting the rate at which the athletes recover.
Through this process, sleep replenishes, repairs and rebuilds damaged tissue after a day of training, while also building bone-building muscle so you can be ready for the next day of training. Therefore, without getting enough sleep, you will have a hard time recovering properly after you exercise and not use your energy effectively.
The ratio of exercise performance is directly proportional to your sleep. That means less sleep leads to a decrease in your performance. In 2011, a group of researchers from Stanford published a study in the journal SLEEP detailing how their findings of sleep improve exercise performance.
The subject of the study was Stanford University basketball players, who maintained their sleep schedule for four weeks. Then they were asked to sleep 10 hours a night for seven weeks. And the study showed that participants significantly improved their sprinting speed, from 16.2 seconds to 15.5 seconds. This suggests that if you want to be productive, you have to prioritize sleep, getting enough sleep can be beneficial for any athlete.
One notable effect on sleep deprivation is that athletes experience reduced alertness while being active. A 2014 study did a study on sleep deprivation in a group of healthy people who were asked to stay awake for 24 hours in a lab, then have them do physical activity, like stepping over a crossbar, they don’t have enough focus and alertness to do it.
In other words, not getting enough sleep makes physical activities like swimming much more difficult.
According to Harris, lack of sleep stimulates our appetite. When you sleep less, ghrelin increases and leptin is decreased, it makes you feel hungry and you will eat without any sign of stopping. Moreover, when you don’t get enough sleep, it reduces the production of Glycogen and carbohydrates, which are stored for use during strenuous physical activity like swimming.
There is research that insomnia can increase the stress hormone Cortisol. High levels of Cortisol will reduce recovery time after exercise, lead to a host of other side effects such as fatigue, loss of concentration, weight gain, and insomnia, and will create a cycle of insomnia.
The basic personal need is 7 to 9 hours of sleep per night and 7 days of sleep a week. If you are more tired, get an extra 30 to 60 minutes of sleep each night.
Here are 7 recommendations for better sleep
This may not be easy, but it is imperative that you adhere to it. This consistency helps your body create a circadian clock, making it easier to fall asleep/wake up.
If you create too much size at bedtime, it can stir your mind leading to insomnia, so turn them off a few hours before you start sleeping, emails and texts can wait until the next day.
This can affect your sleep. If you have to choose between jogging and a good night’s sleep, choose a good night’s sleep as it offers more long-term benefits.
You do not want after a meal to make you gain weight, and you probably do not want to drink coffee too late in the day. Its stimulant effects can take hours to decrease and will ruin your sleep.
You should consider using heavy colors for walls and curtains to block out unwanted light.
A 2015 study found that people surrounded by clutter were more likely to suffer from sleep disturbances.
Like exercise/swimming, sleep also requires a supplement. Try tart cherry juice, which has been shown to increase melatonin wakefulness, increase sleepiness, or Kava tea will help you relax before you fall asleep.
As you can see, getting enough sleep has many benefits for the normal person, not to mention the benefits for swimmers to perform better in competition and recover faster. So you should try to prioritize sleep so that your body recovers quickly from intense exercise and has enough alertness to participate in activities during the day.