Thursday, November 4, 2010


I'm exhausted.  Plain and simple.  Too much to do and too little sleep.  I used to think that working out instead of going to bed was a good idea.  For the record, it is not.  Sleep is a crucial part of losing weight.

Here's a snippet from a 2004 USA Today article:
Scientists have found that sleep deprivation increases levels of a hunger hormone and decreases levels of a hormone that makes you feel full. The effects may lead to overeating and weight gain. 

The article also asserts that the rate of obesity in America (65%) mirrors the rate of people not getting a full night's sleep (63%).

I read another study recently that claims sleep deprivation causes the body to metabolize muscle rather than fat.  Two groups of people got the same amount of exercise and calories.  One group got 8.5 hours of sleep a night.  The other group got 5.5 hours.  Both groups lost the same amount of weight but half the weight lost in the 5.5 hours of sleep group was muscle.

A problem that plagues many overweight people (myself included) is sleep apnea.  This disorder tends to be a double edged sword.  For those of you who are unfamiliar with sleep apnea, it's the medical term for snoring.  When you snore, you're actually waking yourself up many times each minute (it was over 100 according to my sleep study).  Sleep apnea worsens with weight gain.  As the previous studies showed, sleep deprivation leads to more obesity.  Downward spiral.

If you think you might have sleep apnea, go do a sleep study.  The subsequent rest I've gotten because of it was worth the testing.  I don't think I would have been able to lose the weight I've lost without treatment.

Everyone else, get a good night's sleep.  It will help you lose weight.


  1. I really liked this post. And the information you offer is absolutely accurate! (I know from experience!!)

    But, I have to be a little blunt and a little honest. Do you really think it's that you have too much to do, or are you not managing your time very well? I know you struggle with time management, and that can really destroy a person's 'to-do' list and cause a person to stay up later than planned because there was 'too much to do' ...

    Just some food for thought.

    I love that you're making some great progress!! Are you doing anything special for the 1-year mark of your weight loss goals? (like a turkey trot 5k???) ;-)

  2. I agree with the concept but man is it hard to get enough sleep when your working 9 hrs, travel time, family time, workouts and... I need to catch up some on the weekends, thanks for the info.

  3. great post. I know I suffer from lackofsleeptimeosity. I am always dragging my butt b/c i only get 5-6 hours of sleep at night. So i inevitably fill up on caffeine which isn't helping me shed the lbs. it's a bad cycle!

  4. Hmmm Time Management - that's a great point

    Excercise equipment at home?

    have someone else buy your grocieries?