Move for Health Article 4: The Power of Quality Sleep in a Healthy Lifestyle

Date Published: 04 Oct 2018 Categories: News
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Did you know that quality sleep improves how you perform in day to day activities, at school or work and even in your sporting activities? On top of this it improves your general health and your mood. So whilst our weekly training programme leading up to the “Woolworths Move for your Health 6km walk/run in proud association with SANParks” focuses on the exercise you need to do – your recovery and sleep are critically important too.

 

I chatted to Dr Dale Rae who heads up the Sports Science Institute of SA (SSISA)’s Sleep Science unit about optimising one’s sleep. Dr Rae, senior researcher at UCT’s HPALS (Health through Physical Activity, Lifestyle and Sport Research Centre), explained how people have differing sleep requirements. Whilst six hours may be adequate -for some; for others more than 10 hours of sleep is needed. The Sleep Science Unit at SSISA (www.ssisa.com) offers a range of services to those who are experiencing problems sleeping.

 

Dr Rae’s top 7 tips for improving one’s sleep quality:

 

  1. Establish a routine. Try to go to bed and wake up at the same time each day – even on weekends- your body responds well to routine.
  2. Limit caffeine intake to the morning. This gives you the best chance of feeling sleepy at a reasonable hour at night.
  3. Try not to exercise or eat too late in the evenings since both increase your metabolic rate delaying your desire to sleep early.
  4. Limit alcohol intake. While it may make you sleepy initially and you fall asleep fast, too much alcohol can interfere with the quality of your sleep.
  5. Tune down before turning in. Try to avoid work, studying or anything else too stressful in the hour before you turn out the lights.
  6. Seek light in the morning, preferably outdoor light. It is stimulating and helps prime your body for the day. Once the sun sets in the evening, be wary of too much artificial light exposure. Our bodies are designed to respond to the reduced light levels in the evening to initiate sleep.
  7. Excessive screen time in the evenings (TV’s, phones, tablets and computers) suppresses melatonin, which helps to promote sleep. Install apps that filter the blue light from your screen.

 

Refreshed by quality sleep – exercise training is bound to feel a whole lot easier. In partnership with the Community newspapers, Western Province Cricket Club Running Section (WPCC), Woolworths, FUTURELIFE, SANParks and Claremont Rotary Club, we are here to get you moving and making healthier choices.  With the “Woolworths Move for your Health 6km walk/run in proud association with SANParks” taking place 4 November 2018 – we are now into our third week of training.  Schools – ensure you sign up as a group for the Woolworths 6km School’s Mass Participation Competition where there are cash prizes for both large and small schools claiming the title of the highest percentage of learners completing the event. Contact us on move4health@ssisa.com and we will make sure your school gets the information.

Week 3

8 -14 Oct

RUNNING PROGRAMME # repeats WALKING PROGRAMME

(in step count or time)

Warm-up 10 min WALK  EVERY SESSION  
Mon 5 min jog/ 2 min walk

3 min jog/ 2 min walk

3 Rest
Tues Rest   3600 steps / 30 min
Wed 5 min jog/ 2 min walk

3 min jog/ 2 min walk

3 Rest
Thurs Rest   3000 steps / 25 min
Fri 6 min jog/ 2 min walk

3 min jog/ 2 min walk

3 Rest
Sat Rest   3600 steps / 30 min
Sun BRISK 30 min walk   3000 steps / 25 min (pick up the pace for the last 10 mins!)

 

Event details

Race date Sunday 4 November 2018
Start times 6km 06h45
Registration (individuals) 05h00
COMPULSORY Pre-registration

Schools Mass Participation Competition

Thursday 25 October and Friday 26 October 2018 from 15h00 until 17h30.

SSISA, Boundary Road, Newlands

15h00 – 17h30
Event information SSISA
SSISA information  move4health@ssisa.com www.ssisa.com

By: Kathleen Mc Quaide Sports Science Institute of South Africa, Strategic, Media & Sponsorship Manager

 

Previous article in the Move for Health 2018 Series:

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