June 18, 2012

Sleep: making Monday happy

Today was a good day. "Monday? A good day?" you ask. Yes, it was still a good day when my normally 25-minute drive to work turned into a 90-minute drive. "Are you nuts?" you ask. Yes, but that doesn’t have anything to do with this.
My view for one hour and 15 minutes. Look at the pretty water.
Do you know what does have to do with this? Sleep. Yes, something that simple keeps me happy.

I feel like I slept the weekend away. I slept a lot. Bunches. As in, more than 12 hours Friday night into Saturday. Yikes.

I keep telling myself that I need more sleep during the week. I keep not listening to myself. I keep sliding by, so I figure it’s OK.

But, sleeping that long on the weekend is an obvious sign I’m lacking in getting it during the week. And, I started thinking about how I’ve been feeling lately: irritable, out of it, making poor health decisions and tired (duh).

Not getting enough sleep is harmful for you in so many ways, it has to adversely affect your running performance too, right? Right.

In researching sleeping and running (thanks, Running Times), I found that:
  • People suffering from sleep deprivation often experience adverse changes in their diet (they eat more and often an unhealthy diet), make poor decisions, can't focus and become unmotivated. These things can wreak havoc on your training plans and not allow you to reach your workout goals.
  • A period of decreased sleep of only a few days can cause a disruption in glucose metabolism. Glucose metabolism is the process responsible for storing energy from the food we eat and why runners carbo-load before a big race or long run.
  • When a person is chronically sleep-deprived, their level of HGH decreases and cortisol increases. Too much cortisol can be dangerous because it can prohibit the body from recovering fully and it can also interfere with the repair and growth of soft tissue.
But, this wasn’t me today. I got enough sleep and I suddenly love all-things Monday. My run tonight was going to rock, right? Yeah, not right. So wrong.

I ran-walked-slopped my way through 4 miles. It was a terrible run; maybe ranking right up there with one of my worst ever.
Pooey on that run!
Before I started on an all-night bender, I realized that so many things play into whether you have good run (fuel, hydration, weather). Getting a few good nights of sleep isn’t going to create a miracle performance. But, it’s going to help more than hurt in the long run.

So, despite a craptacular run, I decided to keep making a conscious effort to get more sleep. Good night!


  1. You are so right! I think so many of us are sleep deprived. I know I am! Sorry your run was a bust, but at least you DID it! :) Be proud of that fact, girl!

  2. i feel like something weird is going on... i had a really good monday too, wtf is that about!!?? and agree with Jenny, at least you did it - that counts way more then if you did nothing at all!!

  3. So, how are you finding extra time to sleep? What are you cutting out of your day (evening)? That's the part that always stumps me, but I need to try harder. So many things are related to sleep deprivation.

    1. Unfortunately, I had a lot of "procrastinating and goofing off" time in my evening schedule. So now instead of spending way too much time reading celebrity gossip or just thinking about what I need to do, I do it. I still try to leave some time for goofing off (a girl needs her gossip), but just not as much.


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