Sleep is important for your health

Bad news for night owls. Their risk of early death is 10% higher than for early risers, study finds -

Are you an night owl or morning lark? According to this study, the combination of the two may not be good for your health. Like a regular exercise program, it is also important to get regular and enough sleep.

I have often joked that starting a health club was the worst thing I could have ever done for my health. One would think that being surrounded by exercise equipment and a swimming pool is the answer to life long health and fitness. While it does make achieving the required daily exercise goals easier to attain, it is not what you might think.

In the early years of Swymfit, it was about survival and making payroll. I channelled my best stay up late graduate school skills, along with my love of the early morning to get things done and to make my business work. Some would say these are required skills for success. I call it an addiction.

Something in my brain was trained to really enjoy staying up late to write a paper or study for a test. Conversely, nothing felt better than to get up early in the morning to experience my surroundings, to workout and to get more things done by 8 AM than many of my peers. As a former ski coach, catching the first chair lift, as the sun was rising over the beautiful mountain peaks was invigorating and never got old.

The combination of being able to stay up late and get up early was also a bit of a power trip. I could work harder and do more than my friends and peers. I had staying power and could endure from the lack of sleep. Only the weak could not handle the work load. Yet maybe the “weak” also knew something that I did not?

We all need sleep. In fact, more and more research is suggesting that without enough sleep, we could be increasing our susceptibility to dementia, weight gain and a reduced ability to learn. A good night of sleep should be included along with your daily exercise routine.

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