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Q&A: Making up for Lost Sleep


Q: If I can't get a full night's sleep because of my schedule, should I try and "catch up" on sleep by getting more than 8 hours the next night?

A: Contrary to popular belief, you can't "catch up on your sleep." One restful night's sleep can leave you feeling refreshed and invigorated, but all those nights of missed sleep have a negative effect over time.

If you can, try to work a daily nap into your routine; a quick snooze of 25 to 30 minutes is a great way to rejuvenate yourself. Obviously, this nap is less than a 90-minute sleep cycle. You'll awaken before you reach that deep sleep, and essentially trick your body into thinking it woke up from a full 90-minute REM cycle.

*Adapted from Core Performance: The revolutionary workout program to transform your body and your life by Mark Verstegen and Pete Williams. Rodale, 2004.

About The Author

Mark Verstegen – An internationally-recognized leader and innovator in the world of athletic performance training, Mark Verstegen is the founder and president of EXOS.

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Tags: Q&A, Sleep