In school, I was always the type that ends up reading books with a flashlight hidden between the sheets when he's supposed to be fast asleep.In today's world, that would equate to text messaging or browsing the Internet on the phone - but you get the point. Different generations, same mindset. . .
And this wasn't just limited to when I was really young - hark back to my high school days, and I was jumping up from bed the minute my mother left the room - to take another gander at the new machine sitting on a desk in the corner - the almighty COMPUTER of all things. This might sound strange to you today, but it was a long time ago, and personal computers were still a new concept for folks back then - as were 24/7 broadband connections. And laptops? Those were wonder machines that only the "bosses of large companies" used - not kids like us.
Naturally, this meant I didn't get enough sleep on a regular basis, and more often than not, a tired, worn out version of myself would be seen the next morning - sometimes just a few hours away from my "actual" bedtime. And so, I heard the growing boys line more often than I wanted to at that point in my life. Which is probably the case for most "growing boys" these days as well.
Now, you're probably wondering why I'm regaling you with these anecdotes from my past - and I don't blame you - but there is a reason behind it.
"Growing boys" and you have a lot in common. For one, if your training hard on a regular basis, you fall into the "growing category" as well. You are breaking your muscles down during the workout - so that they can GROW - and get STRONGER for the next challenege - which is the next workout. And if you don't sleep enough, or don't sleep well enough (note the difference that one word makes), you won't recover as well as you would if you got 8 restful hours on a regular basis. This is because your body releases growth hormone during periods of sleep - and that is what allows you to get stronger, lose fat, etc etc. If you don't sleep enough, you don't give your body a chance to release enough growth hormones. It's that simple, and I've found this out the hard way many a times.
Second, for those of you that are overweight and want to lose weight, getting enough sleep is a must. Weight gain and obesity have been directly linked to lack of sleep, so if your desperately trying to lose those extra lbs, pay more attention to how much you are sleeping.
There are many, many other very good reasons behind getting enough Z's on a regular basis and I don't intend to cover them all here - in fact, I couldn't if I wanted to. But know that getting enough sleep is IMPORTANT - so important that I devote an entire chapter to it in Fast and Furious Fitness.
And it's not just me saying this - it is what Mother Nature demands. If you look at some of the strongest animals in the wild, you'll see that they spend most of their lives RESTING - and SLEEPING. And this helps them GET stronger, and STAY stronger. Take a lion for example - it'll laze around most of the day - but you don't want to be the prey it's tracking when it does get down to business.
Still don't believe me? Well, try working out hard on a regular basis while getting less than an optimal amount of sleep every night - and you'll see what I mean immediately.
So, make sure your getting enough sleep every night. 8 hours is a good rule of thumb for most folks, but everyone is different. If 8 hours isn't ideal for you, figure out what works for you - and keep doing it.
And thats the tip for the day - back again tomorrow!
PS: - Note that this advice is just as applicable to you ladies out there as well. Growing boys need their sleep, but so do you ladies!
PS#2: - The exercises and routines I mention in Fast and Furious Fitness are just as applicable to kids as they are adults - so if your looking to start your kid off on the right path, grab a copy NOW.