The many benefits of sleep

The personal trainer lists the benefits of sleep.

BedroomThere seems to be some perverse thinking that tells us that we are all such ‘superwomen’ we don’t need to sleep for long, that sleep is for the feeble and the weak. The ‘plenty of time to sleep when I am dead’ approach to life. Let me tell you – that is simply not sustainable and at some stage you will be brought up short. What’s more, along the way you will increase your risk of diabetes, hypertension and heart disease, and if that’s not enough, you will slow down your metabolism and gain weight.

Let’s remind ourselves why sleep is such a good idea.

More energy, more clarity, more focus.

Create some ‘fuel’ for your day by banking some sleep. You can’t work hard if you have no reserves to draw on. Good sleep rejuvenates body and mind. You will have greater clarity and focus on the tasks throughout the day. You will be more productive if you’ve had enough sleep.

Look better

Quite simply, you will look so much better! Check it out in the mirror. Compare the face staring at you after a week of 5 hours a night, with the face that looks back at you after several decent nights in a row.

Feel better and happier

Lack of sleep has been linked to higher rates of depression. When you feel exhausted day after day it wears down your mental faculties and it’s easy to spiral downwards emotionally. When you get the amount of rest and sleep you need you will, quite simply, feel better and happier.

Improved health and immune system

Regular and sufficient sleep promotes general physical health. If you are constantly run down and tired you are much more likely to pick up cold and flu bugs.

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Manage your weight

If you are up for hours and hours there is, quite simply, more time to eat. You can easily slip in an extra meal or snack (or two) and if you are tired you are much more likely to reach for something ‘to perk you up’.

So don’t underestimate the many benefits of sleep. There is a great deal of truth in the old saying, early to bed and early to rise, makes a person happy, healthy and wise.

About Marion Foreman

I fall neatly into the ‘women who weren’t born yesterday’ category. I grew up in a turmoil of Guardian fuelled feminism. I went from ‘little woman’ to independent person in a decade. I began my nurse training in the early 70s in the midst of a male dominated university town. I convinced myself that my views must be wrong as the ultra clever men didn’t agree with me. It wasn’t until I did my degree with the OU that I realised that I had a voice – and a legitimate voice at that. Four children and three husbands later I have found my place in the world. A place that simply says that I am who I am, that I can choose my own path in life and choose those who walk with me. I have learnt that equality means making and taking opportunities, not feeling compelled to ‘do it all’.