Why getting a good night’s sleep is essential

Getting a good night’s sleep is one of the best things you can do for yourself.
We’ve all heard that advice, but few of us known exactly how many important functions take place while we’re getting our ZZZs.
Here are some of the things that a good night’s sleep benefits:
* Your immune system gets a boost
* Your memory is improved
* Your reaction time is increased
* Gives your muscles time to grow
* Human Growth Hormone (HGH) is released, which increases your body’s fat burning capabilities
* The blood supply to your muscles is increased
* Tissue repair takes place
* You have more energy the next day
* You become less dependent upon sugary or caffeinated drinks to get you through the day
For some people, the problem isn’t giving themselves enough time to sleep, rather it’s the quality of the rest itself. You may be tossing and turning much of the night.
Here are some tips to sleep more peacefully:
* Avoid caffeinated beverages at night
* Drink herbal tea
* Listen to soothing music as you try to fall asleep
* Wear earplugs
* Use the bathroom right before going to bed
* Purchase a good pillow
* Don’t exercise when it is close to bedtime
* Take a warm bath before bedtime
* Avoid taking naps during the day
If after following these tips you are still having difficulty getting a good night’s sleep, it’s time to talk to a doctor, who may refer you to a sleep clinic.

At Home Fitness consultant Aaron Dorksen’s blog deals with a variety of fitness topics, ranging from workout tips, motivational ideas and feature stories on how exercise impacts people’s lives. E-mail him with comments, questions or ideas for future blogs at aaron@athomefitness.com