You’re eating right.
You go to the gym regularly.
And you’re even getting a good balance of cardio and weight training sessions to optimize your fitness.
Yet, for some reason, that scale isn’t budging.
I hear you, friend. I know how frustrating this can be.
You see, I was in the same boat last summer.
I thought I was doing everything right. Regular exercise was non-negotiable. I was eating right. Heck, I was even counting my macros! Nevertheless, I did not see the results I wanted.
Then, I stumbled on some research about the strong correlation between sleep and weight loss goals. And that is when things started falling into place.
Now, getting 7-8 hours of sleep each night has been on my radar for a long time. In fact, over on I’m Busy Being Awesome, I’ve talked about the benefits of sleep when it comes to boosting your focus and increasing productivity.
But for some reason, I didn’t extend that connection to fitness and weight loss goals.
Once I realized the correlation, however, it was like finally discovering that missing puzzle piece hiding under the coffee table. It was truly a game changer, and I was quickly back on track with my wellness journey.
So, if you’ve reached a roadblock on your health and fitness journey, or if you struggle to follow the recommended 7-9 hours of sleep each night, then keep reading for a little more motivation to get that much-needed shuteye.
5 Surprising Connections Between Sleep and Weight Loss
More Sleep Helps You Make Better Choices
In a study on the impact of sleep on food cravings, scientists found that sleep deprivation had participants turning to less healthy, higher calorie snacks throughout the day.
In fact, tired participants ended up eating up to 600 more calories per day than when they got the recommended 7-9 hours of sleep.
600 calories? Yikes! I think I’ll opt for more sleep.
Sleep Impacts Your Metabolism
You know how you feel lethargic and exhausted when you get a bad night of sleep? Well, guess what. Your metabolism suffers as well.
You see, this “metabolic grogginess,” sabotages your body’s ability to use insulin properly. In fact, in just four days, participants in a University of Chicago study had their insulin sensitivity drop by more than 30 percent!
Why is this a problem? Simply put, the excess insulin ultimately prompts your body to gain weight rather than lose it. No, thank you!
Leptin & Ghrelin Imbalance
When you don’t get enough sleep, this can also lead to changes in your hormones that regulate hunger.
When you haven’t gotten enough sleep, your ghrelin levels rise, resulting in an increased feeling of hunger.
And if that’s not bad enough, your levels of leptin go down, which decreases your feeling of fullness.
In short, when you don’t get enough sleep, you feel hungrier, which often causes you to eat more than normal.
Breaking news – when you don’t get enough sleep, you don’t have enough energy!
I know, I know. This tip seems like a no brainer. But it’s important to mention nonetheless.
If you plan to make fitness a part of your regular wellness routine, you need the energy to power through your workouts. It’s as simple as that.
According to sleep specialist Michael Breus, Ph.D., “[t]he more sleep deprived you are, the higher your levels of the stress hormone cortisol, which increases your appetite.”
And for most people, when we’re feeling stressed and anxious, we aren’t reaching for bags of kale and raw carrots. Instead, we’re searching for high-carb, high-fat comfort foods.
If you want to kick stress to the curb along with that unwanted weight, opt for 7-9 hours of sleep each night.
And there you have it, friends! Five surprising connections between sleep and weight loss.
Now do yourself a favor and get those valuable 8 hours of sleep tonight. Your future self will thank you.
Are You Ready?
Are you ready to take your health and fitness to the next level? Let’s do it together! Click through the button below and learn how I can help you lose the extra weight, build lean muscle, rediscover your energy, and feel great.