I LOVE sleep, as I have mentioned before in my How to Make Your Morning Routine More Efficient post. And as an athlete, I find that I get fatigued really easily, but I started to think about why that might be. Am I actually tired or do I just think I’m tired? I do not have caffeine regularly, and so, I started to wonder, do I need caffeine because I’m getting older and tired faster?
What is Fatigue?
Extreme tiredness, typically resulting from mental or physical exertion or illness.
There are a few things to consider when looking at fatigue in athletes:
- For women – the #1 thing I look at is my menstrual cycle.
Here’s are some tips to beat fatigue
CLUE – Women, if you don’t have the app Clue yet. Get it! 🙂 It is amazing, and really is helping me create proper workout plans for myself, because I know when I’m going to be energized, and know when I’m going to be tired due to hormone levels in my body, and I can create build weeks and recovery weeks and plan my race schedule around it.
Sleep Zone – Am I really getting as much sleep as I think I’m getting and is it enough? Or is my mind simply playing tricks on me because I’m told how much sleep I should be getting? – There are days where I seriously start to feel nauseous because of lack of sleep, but lack of sleep to me, might be different compared to lack of sleep in some one else. As an athlete, we don’t ever want to be lacking sleep. But, we don’t want to oversleep either. Focus on getting 7-9hrs of sleep. 7 being on the low end, but still enough time to allow your body to recover. 9 being on the high end, but not too long that we then become over tired.
Eat Clean – We hear this over and over again, but we often are thinking about it in terms of looking good, but what about feeling good? What about giving our brain energy so that it can focus and be efficient? Food is not just energy for the body but energy for the mind. Think…What have I been eating? Is it energizing me or making me tired? I like to stick with basics – veggies, fruits, and lean protein. It really is that simple. I add in rice, pasta, or some type of high density carbohydrate when my training calls for it, but that’s still eating clean. 🙂 Eating clean to me, means reducing processed foods and processed sugars from the diet.
Meditation – Are you overwhelmed at work? At home? How are your stress levels? Stress can cause a lot of fatigue. When our brain is getting overworked, it exhausts us physically. Try meditating 10min every day to help the brain relax.
Hydrate – Hydration isn’t important just to help the muscles recover but hydration keeps our body energized. It needs water in order to live. As we know, we can go longer without food, than we can without water. Drink water evenly throughout the day, and make sure that you are peeing light yellow or almost clear regularly for a good indication of your hydration levels.