A majority of the time, we get so caught up in life whether with work, working out, eating, kids, family, etc, that we forget to get enough sleep during the night. The recommended time of sleep that an adult should get on a nightly basis is between 7-9 hours per night. When was the last time you got enough zzz’ in?
Sleep deprivation can significantly hinder your performance and gains in the gym. Not only is muscle-building and performance hindered by lack of sleep, but so is your fat-burning potential.
The proper amount of growth hormone (GH) cannot be secreted without the proper amount of rest. Lack of this hormone in your system can be devastating to your ability to build muscle tissue. If you want to grow, and more importantly, recover from your strenuous workouts then you must get the proper amount of sleep on a nightly basis.
Studies have also shown that less than 7 hours of sleep a night can make it tougher to lose fat. One of the reasons for lack of fat loss with less sleep could be due to the increase in the catabolic stress hormone Cortisol. Cortisol increases with the less sleep you get and too much cortisol has been shown to increase belly fat in males. The only way to reduce cortisol levels in the body is by getting the proper amount of rest. Sleepless nights can also affect weight loss goals because it can affect ghrelin, the hunger hormone that can lead to overeating.
Melatonin can be used in a multiple number of ways but is most commonly known for being used as a sleep aid. Not only will melatonin assist in helping you sleep, but it also provides important antioxidant protection to help with muscle recover and preserving lean mass. Recently melatonin has been becoming more popular for its ability to significantly boost levels of growth hormone (GH). Melatonin also helps to regulate several other hormones in the body.
Valerian Root is a herb and dietary supplement that has been known to be used to fight sleeping disorders, restlessness and anxiety. It can also be used as a muscle relaxant. Valerian root can be used as a natural alternative to prescription “sleeping pills” by acting like a sedative on the brain and nervous system. It is argued that Valerian Root will shorten the time it takes to fall asleep and allows you to feel more rested upon waking.
Gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA)
Gamma-aminobutyric acid, or better known as GABA, provides a one-two punch as a nighttime supplement. GABA is both an amino acid and a neurotransmitter. It is best to be taken at nighttime because it can help promote better sleep by helping you relax in the evening. Not only will GABA allow you to sleep deeper and longer throughout the night, but it will assist with muscle recover, growth, AND fat loss while you snooze. GABA has been shown to enhance growth hormone (GH) release; this release allows your body to free up additional fat cells to burn away during the night.