SLEEP 8-10 HOURS A NIGHT
WITH IDEALLY CONSISTENT BED AND WAKE TIMES
Sleep is probably the best recovery modality there is available. Ensuring enough sleep can help keep cortisol levels under control.
Gherlin, a hunger hormone, can increase when optimal sleep levels are not met.
Leptin, another hormone that can signal less appetite and play a role in both metabolic rate and fat storage, can decrease in as little as one night of decreased sleep.
Shortened sleep to under 6 hours a night has been linked to increased appetite, and decreased energy expenditure. This may be resultant of a brain chemical called orexin which regulates sleep and energy balance.
Some strategies to improve sleep quality
1. Eat a small amount of carbohydrate 15-45 grams with protein before bed to release serotonin and lower cortisol levels. A small piece of dark chocolate has also shown some positive potential here.
2. Set a specific bed and wake up time and try to stick to it consistently
3. Aim for 7-10 hours of sleep. This requirement is highly individualized and you will need to find what works for you. Though keep in mind it is often higher than people think and a number of recent studies have shown forced sleep time (had to remain in bed for this given time for the duration of study) to 9-10 hours improved a ton of both cognitive and physical qualities, not the least of which was simple improved sense of well being.
4. Reading and avoiding blue light and screens before bed may help.
5. Sleep in a cool, dark room.
7. Insert naps to make up for a lack of sleep on a given night.
6. Certain supplements that may help here include a zinc/magnesium combination with around 25mg of zinc and 400mg of magnesium. Melatonin in doses ranging from 1-5 mg may also be useful