The Role Sleep Plays in Muscle Growth

Feb 11, 2020 | Fitness | 0 comments

If you want to build strong muscles throughout your body, you need to get plenty of rest. Continue reading to learn more about the role that sleep plays in muscle growth.

Your Body Repairs Itself During Sleep

Did you know that human growth hormone is released when you sleep, thereby promoting muscle growth? In men, for example, up to 70% of the daily secretion of human growth hormone will happen while you are asleep. Therefore, if you are not getting good quality rest, you could be adversely impacting your hormone levels.

Plus, during Rapid Eye Movement, or REM, sleep, your body can restore and repair tissues, bones, and organs. Immune cells are replenished as well, making sleep integral to good overall health. We don’t recommend the Hibernation diet, but we do recommend sleeping well every night.

Reaching an Anabolic State During Sleep

Another reason why rest is so necessary for the growth of your muscles is because, while you are asleep, your body will enter a higher anabolic state. This means that the body will be able to utilize the time that you are at rest to rejuvenate the muscles throughout your body.

Any microscopic tears that occurred on the cellular level while you were working out will be repaired during sleep. That will cause your muscles to grow larger and stronger. So, in addition to focusing on nutrition to feed your muscles, you also need to focus on letting them rest for a long enough period that will allow repairs to occur.

Inhibiting Cortisol

Cortisol is that nasty stress hormone that everyone wants to avoid. But did you know that it could counteract testosterone and inhibit muscular growth, while also aiding the breakdown of muscles too?

If you aren’t getting enough hours of sleep, your cortisol level could increase, and that could reduce the effectiveness of your workouts because your body won’t be able to grow those muscles that you worked on.

How Much Sleep Do You Need?

Now that you know how important sleep is to your muscles, you are likely wondering just how much sleep you really need to get every night. And you are also probably asking yourself if you are getting enough hours of sleep. Put simply, on days when you train, you should try to get 8 to 10 hours of good quality sleep at night.

Having Trouble Getting the Rest You Need for Muscle Growth?

You know you need to get enough shut-eye in order to achieve adequate muscle growth, but what if you are having a lot of trouble falling, and staying, asleep every night? Well, you certainly aren’t alone. According to Real Simple, it’s harder to fall asleep as an adult. But, don’t fret, as there are many strategies that you can try, such as making your bedroom temperature cooler, removing technology from the bedroom, and listening to calming music or doing some relaxing yoga before bed.

One of the easiest ways to achieve better sleep, though, is by using sleep supplements that contain high-quality ingredients. Opt to take a product that you can buy over the counter, and that contains a variety of ingredients that are natural and proven to be helpful when it comes to falling asleep faster and staying asleep throughout the night. Some of the top ingredients to look for include:

  • Melatonin
  • Magnesium
  • Valerian
  • Passionflower
  • Hops
  • L-Theanine

The right combination of ingredients that promote sleep can be even more effective than just taking one ingredient, such as melatonin, every night. This can be really helpful when you are getting so little sleep that your muscle growth is suffering as a result.

Getting the Right Amount of Rest Is So Important!

As you can see, sleep is a really important component to muscle growth, so if you are working hard at the gym to build strong, sexy muscles, whether you want to strengthen your arms, core, or lower body, make it a point to get enough hours of sleep every night.

If you are experiencing a lot of difficulty getting the rest that you need, especially if you have already tried a sleep aid, be sure to consult with your physician. He or she can diagnose your sleep disorder and steer you in the right direction towards the appropriate treatment.