Monday, 26 April 2010

Sleep. The missing Link?

Gym Ninja is a tad knackered this evening. Has been all day in fact, thanks to a very bad night's sleep. The sleep was going great, until Gym Ninja's mind decided that the enjoyable dream about the impending  photoshoot should get all 'nasty' and that GN couldn't get to where she needed to be in the dream, for she had feet that moved as fast as those robots you wind up and their little legs interlock as they walk across your desk? You know the ones...? AHHR! So Gym Ninja awoke at 4.20am all riled up and suddenly ravenous. A quick scoot downstairs (with only one eye open, for everyone knows if you leave one eye shut then you can go straight back to sleep again) and GN quaffed half a carton of chocolate Maximilk..a  nice blend of fast and slow releasing proteins that would help with muscle repair (and fill her up, yum!).

So by morning Gym Ninja was pooped. Grumpy Ninja packed up her day's supply of healthy foods, shoved her Inspiration File in her bag and then set off to work. First call  of the day was spoiled by receiving an email just before GN went in, from the Muppet Line Manager wanting to know why GN was visiting her first client. AHHHR, do NOT Micro Manage a tired grumpy Gym Ninja!!!!!!! FFS!  Then Gym Ninja had to head to a local hospital where she was due to meet with a team of NHS staff and her very own MD (another micro manager) to discuss a large project.

Gym Ninja was flagging though due to the broken sleep, so stopped off and bought some PEP energy tablets. Just caffeine in a pill really. That should work eh? But Gym Ninja had arrived early for the appointment, the day was warm and so was GN's car, so before long she was feeling sleepy despite the injection of PEP! Good job it was time for lunch.

Gym Ninja unpacked her salad and a tin of tuna in brine from her mini cool bag. Gym Ninja felt very smug that she'd prepared this the night before. VERY smug and the salad with tuna was a very healthy lunch indeed. Gym Ninja grabbed the tin of Tuna...................AHHHHHHR! In her sleepy state, GN had totally forgotten to pack the tin opener! There was NO way Gym Ninja would just eat the green salad on its own as she is NOT a Diplodocus! Good job GN always travels with a stash of emergency stuff. Her glovebox is chilled so out came a Maximuscle Promax Meal bar to save the day! That & an organic apple!

The meeting went well, despite GN being grumpy and tired. Once free from the meeting, another healthy snack got shoved down her neck, before she then headed to the gym. Gym Ninja was really tired by now. The gym would be a huge test for her however the photoshoot (AHHHR, bl**dy goals!) was at the back of her mind so no WAY would she skive the session. Plus GN had her new Inspiration File with her. One look at that and her mind over-ruled her tired body!

But......just in case it didn't, in went 2 more PEP tablets washed down with a can of Diet Emerge (now only 25p a can in Asda everyone!!!!!!)

As you can imagine, GN was bouncing off the walls at this point. The interval run was tough yet GN had all of the fake energy in her system so carried on regardless. At one point GN was so wired she ran into the handles on the console of the treadmill! Time to speed it up a notch!!!!!

Upper Body was on GN's list today. But the tiredness was staring to kick in. Her Central Nervous System and Peripheral Nervous System no longer wanted to play ball.  Gym Ninja was ALMOST too tired to get annoyed by a girl who was standing  so close to the mirrors to do her arm workout that her nose nearly touched them!

Anyway, sleep. The subject of today's blog....Sleep is VITAL. Skipping sleep, even if just by an hour or so each night, can have an accumulative effect and can end up affecting you in many ways. Tiredness often leads to clumsiness and this is why you find your workouts suffer. Lack of sleep can seriously impact your health and fitness goals for a number of reasons.

1. Central And Peripheral Nervous System fatigue. Clumsiness, the muscle fibres  not all firing up when you need them to, balance issues...not conducive to a good workout and may cause injury!

2.  Tiredness can mean your body demands instant energy from somewhere and where does it demand it from? FOOD!  The most sugary highly calorific food possible. So, you eat like a pig your insulin levels spike and fall, tiredness becomes a vicious circle, excess calories are more likely stored as fat (especially around the midsection).

3.  Poor quality rest and repair. This can lead to overtraining and lack of results. You are training hard yet skimping on rest and sleep, You do not see the results you crave so what do you do? Train harder. This then makes everything worse! Yo become all smooth and shapeless. Podgy even. So now you start to cut back on what you eat...and again even more problems arise....

Oh, and it's AGING ok? Lack of sleep has an immediate aging affect (unless you think the panda look is cute?) and a long-term effect on your skin and collagen levels.  
Lack of sleep can increase cortisol (the stress hormone) levels to rise, encouraging the body to store fat.
Lack of sleep lowers the immune system leaving you at risk of illness and injury.....

Oh, and it makes you bad tempered too. GRUMPY Ninja!

Gym Ninja would continue, but she is actually about to head off to bed! Up early in the morning for a day in the office wih Muppet the Line Manager. Unless Gym Ninja sleeps for HOURS and makes up the deficit, then his life is at risk. Grumpy Ninja has NO patience for Muppet Line Managers when tired and may stab him in the fingers with a pen!

Right, before GN goes, she'd just like to check to see if any of you have made a start with your Inspiration File yet? Get going if you haven't. It's rather fun to do! Type in 'fitness models' or other key phrases into Google Images and then cut an paste to your hearts desire.  You ALL need to get this file in place, as in the next few days Gym Ninja has another fantastic motivational 'tool' to help you all................... ;-)

Gym Ninja zzzzzzzzzz