Are you getting enough Rest?

posted on October 31, 2018 by Al Bell


Almost seen as a foreign word to many today, rest is kinda that long lost friend one has not seen in a while but looking to hook-up with.

With busy schedules, many are hustling hours past the normal 9am to a 5pm job. In a lot of cases, both partners are working longer too, forcing even more of a strain on the family as a whole. This does not include the after-work activities which can stretch ones waking time well into the late night hours and affecting much-needed sleep.

The individuals amount of rest depends on a couple of factors. Age and the amount of physical activity one engages in are two of the main factors. The National Heart Lung and Blood Institute recommends teens get 9-10 hours of rest while only 7-8 hours for adults. 1.  If you engage in a strenuous physical activity with goals to build strength and/or muscle, rest is key in the bodies development.

A Sleep in America poll was conducted by The National Sleep Foundation and revealed close to 90 percent of adults admit that they feel very effective at accomplishing things when getting enough rest. When asking the same group about prioritizing sleep as compared to fitness/exercise, work, and hobbies/interest only 10 percent admitted they do. So strange that the group who encourages fitness and exercise would not prioritize rest first, seeing that rest is a key component of the bodies growth and rehabilitation. My guess is that many get so caught up in a busy lifestyle that rest is more than likely not given a second thought. 

On a personal note, from time to time I have fallen into this vicious cycle of being overwhelmed with plans that need to be executed throughout a day to day and week to week schedule. The catch is, I get so caught up in the hustle, that I don’t recognize the need to get enough rest. You see, the body is like a machine that needs proper maintenance. When it does not get the attention it needs, it will fail. 

For example, if oil is not maintained within an engine, its viscosity will weaken and lead to overheating. This will eventually lead to engine failure if not addressed. The same can happen when one does not get the proper sleep. Extreme exhaustion from overworking may result. This is not what one wants within the body. 

So, to defend against not getting enough sleep let us highlight these reminder benefits as to what happens when one does get enough rest.

Sleep provides:

  • Repair – the body during periods of rest repairs itself, meaning the bodies cells use this time to clean themselves up if damaged. 
  • Cleanse – The bodies cells use this time to pool and store waste for evacuation.
  • Clear thinking – When brain cells get a chance to revitalize and rest the result is clear cognitive thinking.
  • Productivity – when the bodies organs rest their overall rested state translates into fresh energy
  • Better Mood – non-rested states can lead to stress which can lead to unwanted mood swings and being temperamental. Never knew anyone to hate an upbeat attitude.
  • Quality time – When one is rested there is a better chance to get out and enjoy life’s activities. Especially when it comes to family functions. 
  • Muscle growth – the process of tearing down to build goes true when it comes to physical fitness workouts. Getting the proper rest encourages the development of muscles and the metabolism of fat.

So, if you are not getting the proper amount of sleep, below is an infographic provided by Johns Hopkins medicine entitled “Effects of Sleep Deprivation”. The infographic highlights research findings of associated health outcomes in relation to Sleep Deprivation.

Of course, this is not a complete list of benefits so please leave those I have left out in the comments section. For more encouraging posts on life and fitness check out this post!


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