Can you change your triathlon performance in 8 hours?

Well-made bed

Chances are you’ve carefully planned your training schedule to help you reach peak performance for your A race, whenever it comes in the season. You may also be working on a nutrition plan so that you are at your optimum weight… and all whilst working and juggling family commitments (and possibly study). For many people this means compromises. For me, it often results in less sleep… and this can have a detrimental effect on my triathlon performance.

So, is it worth training hard and eating right if I neglect my recovery time and don’t sleep enough?

A recent scare story (loosely based on a report using Australia’s well-known 45 and Up public health data) suggested that sleeping more than 9 hours a night could be detrimental to health

Sleeping more than nine hours a night – combined with sitting too much during the day and a lack of exercise – can be just as bad for you as smoking and drinking alcohol.

However, what wasn’t made clear was that this just referred to people who do under 2.5 hours of exercise a week – something that is unlikely to apply to triathletes.

Are you a superstar snoozer?

Sleep & Sports (final)(1)

Infographic from:

If you want more information about sleep, you might enjoy this BBC site: Which five things ruin a good night’s sleep?

How many hours sleep do you get? How many hours do you think you need? What are your top tips for a good night’s sleep?

3 Responses

  1. Ohh, that is very interesting!! I would say I average between 7.5 – 8 hours per night on a regular basis. One of the things that really disrupts my sleep quality is falling asleep while watching TV. I know it is a terrible thing to do, but so many times I seem to doze off. My goal is to not even turn on the TV now and just turn off the lights and go to sleep!

    • Good strategy! I recently moved house and need to get someone round to fix the TV aerial as we had no reception. He wanted to know where the TVs were in our house and was surprised when I explained that the one in the lounge is the only one we own. I realised a long time ago that it’s not good to have a TV in the bedroom and now I avoid all electronics there… my phone is banished to the lounge!

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