Sleep is essential to the health, wellness, and performance of all Marines in the following ways:
Emotion Control. Everyone experiences both positive and negative emotions daily. A good night of sleep brings the brain and body back to baseline levels. We feel more refreshed and ready to face a new day when we get enough of both quantity and quality of sleep.
Stress Management. When we are stressed, we rely on a variety of different coping mechanisms, however, when we lack sleep, those coping mechanisms won’t work as well.
Mental Readiness. Sleep helps us think clearly, maintain attention, process information efficiently and effectively, make decisions, recall information, and learn new information. When we are fatigued, we are more likely to make errors that can lead to accidents and injury. Lack of sleep is like being drunk. For example, being awake for 24 hours is functionally equivalent to a blood-alcohol content of 0.1 percent (legally drunk in most states).
Social Skills. Sleep impacts relationships. When we don’t get enough sleep, we are often crabby, treat others differently, and are less empathetic which can lead to poor group performance, unit morale, and cohesion.
Physical Readiness. During sleep, our bodies and minds are repairing themselves. Sleep helps heal injuries, recover from hard workouts, and maximize muscle gains. Our immune systems also replenish themselves during sleep, preventing infections and malignancies. When we lack sleep, we are at a greater risk for chronic diseases.
Hormones and Eating Habits. Sleep helps us regulate our hunger and hormones. We are more likely to consume carbohydrates and fewer healthy fats and proteins when we lack sleep, which can affect our nutrition and weight management goals.
Make sleep part of your fitness plan and reach out to Semper Fit for sleep coaching assistance.
What to learn even more? Explore this self-reflection tool to discover how the lack of sleep may be affecting your health, wellness, and performance.