100 lb. Club - Is sleep that important?

View Full Version : Is sleep that important?

02-03-2013, 02:50 AM
I daily weigh. Over the last two days, I've noticed an upward climb. I've stayed within my daily/weekly points, TOM is not near, muscles aren't sore anymore, etc. The only thing that I can think that could be hindering my weight loss this week could be the fact that I have been going to bed late every day. Since my new week is about to start, I want to develop a game plan on what I can do better this week to help my weight loss. I'm never going to be able to get a full 8 hours of sleep every day, especially if I have to increase my overtime at work (at the end of the month). Could my lack of sleep explain the increases? I think most of this week I've been averaging about 5-6 hours of sleep. I think my goal this week may be to go to bed earlier.

the shiv
02-03-2013, 05:01 AM
Hey, I sometimes get this too.

It all depends on whether or not you're tired, I think. We don't all need the 8 hours, some more, some less. And it fluctuates. But if you're waking up with an alarm, sleeping in, and feeling tired during the day, it could slow your weight loss, possibly. It has for me. I don't know if it's the body hanging onto fat or water, but I always find after a busy period then a few good nights of uninterrupted, no-alarm-clock, wake up whenever you want sleep, the scale goes down a bit. I swear stress and tension weigh something too ;)

02-03-2013, 05:42 AM
Something like leptin and gherlin levels may be set up or down causing u to crave and eat more carbs. But if u stay on track then It could be lack of cycling of rem sleep like missing the last rem of the night when your brain is most active so it burns lots of cals to keep it active. I think lack of sleep shows on the scale with me, just about always. Oh and to reach rem u need to have uninterrupted sleep, I take magnesium helps me sleep soundly and all night. I know with kids that can sometimes be unheard of. Just try to get to bed earlier and see if your scales moves. Simple experiment.

02-03-2013, 10:09 AM
Well, I work nights with mandatory overtime. I always feel sleepy (especially on my 12 hour days). But I've been procrastinating exercising and then that means I end later. I have Monday night off. I hope a good sleep before my weigh in does good! Either way, I figure if my weigh in is not as good as I want, that's a new goal for the week to tweak my eating, tracking, sleep and exercise!

Misti in Seattle
02-03-2013, 10:21 AM
I agree with the shiv. Some of us just need more sleep than others; I am thankful I am one who just does not need 8 hours of sleep a night. I was wide awake at 5 AM this morning and have been putzing around on my computer, etc., enjoying these early morning hours.

I find that since I have been working out so much, I do need a bit more sleep than before and have adjusted for that.

But yes, if you always have to wake up to an alarm and are tired a lot, more sleep would probably be for the best.

02-03-2013, 10:44 AM
Good sleep is vital for weight.loss to occur in my life. Not only does my body and mind get to reset, I'm more disciplined with myself and less likely to make poor choices. Like saltine and pub sandwiches at.midnight :( those don't occur if I'm in bed.

There's been a series of studies done regarding 3rd shift workers and the more unique obstacles they face with losing weight.

02-03-2013, 11:43 AM
When I'm tired I get cranky, and I am more likely to self-medicate with food. When I sleep enough, I am much more rested and able to practice the tools I have for avoiding overeating.

I prefer to sleep 8 hours, but three nights a week I only get 7 or so (my commute is 1.5 hours each way), and I can absolutely tell the difference. The evenings of the days after I haven't had as much sleep, I sometimes find it very difficult to stay on plan.

02-03-2013, 12:35 PM
Daimere, I feel your pain on trying to lose weight while working night turn; it was close to impossible for me, and I ended up having to take a new job that is not as much fun, but it is more healthy for me to be sleeping during the night and working during the day.

When you don't sleep enough, your BMR slows to only fuel truly important processes. I find that I also start to crave sugar and carb-heavy foods. Over time, you will create an overabundance of stress hormones leading to weight gain, high blood pressure, and insulin resistance. I would say sleep is pretty darn important.

02-03-2013, 10:00 PM
dont freak out about the "so called weight gain" You did not gain anything! The food needs to be burned off or poopoo time! To gain a pound you need to eat 3500 calories! It's hard to believe you would eat that much!

Just burn it off and the scale will move down!

02-03-2013, 10:13 PM

That article might help. Hormones can get out of whack and hinder weight loss.

02-04-2013, 10:46 AM
My center talks about sleep all the time. Good thing I love sleeping!

Here is some information about sleep/diet studies:

In one of the studies cited in the commentary, study participants decreased the amount of calories they consumed for two weeks, and got either 5.5 hours of sleep a night, or 8.5 hours of sleep a night. By the end of the study period, the ones who got 5.5 hours of sleep a night lost less body fat than those who got 8.5 hours.

And in another study explored in the commentary, 123 overweight or obese adults went on a calorie-restricted diet for 17 weeks. Just like the other study, the amount of sleep they got was linked with how much weight they actually lost by the end of the study period.

02-04-2013, 11:14 AM
Everything seems to affect my weight loss. Beyond the obvious what-I-stuff-in-my-hole culprit, it is greatly impacted by fatigue and stress. Both of these, as others have said, can easily lead to overeating, poor choices, and being too tired to exercise or make quality meals.

I'm losing slowly right now but this school semester is full of long nights and stress so I'm just trying to manage the best I can. However, when able to, I try to slow down and allow recovery, usually the weekend.

Do the best you can and take care of all aspects of your health.

April Snow
02-04-2013, 11:34 AM
I just can't sleep for 8-9 hours. I wish I could, I don't always feel like I am as well rested as I'd like to be but my body seems to have other ideas and wakes up. Most of the time, I get enough sleep so that I'm not so tired that I'm eating extra food for more energy. I have definitely done that sometimes, but since I am back on my low carb plan, I don't sleep later but I think I get a better quality of sleep.

02-04-2013, 12:32 PM
I live with a shift worker. So I've been to every conference, read every piece of literature, heard every anecdote. They'll all point to the same thing: Shift work is going to be an obstacle to weight loss. This doesn't mean it isn't a hurdle that you can't jump though.

In our house, we get as much sleep as we can. When he's sleeping during the day, we dim the tv and use black out curtains for the few hours before we go to bed. We had a grow light on a timer that came on just before he woke up, but then we invested in a Phillip's Wake up lamp that mimics sunrise and starts 30 minutes before you want to be up.

Our bedroom is a sleep only zone. No television no computers. This way our bodies know if we're in bed, we sleep. We find it beneficial to stop eating a few hours before sleep time as well.

02-04-2013, 01:11 PM
I am reading “The Plan” right now by Lyn-Genet Recitas. Here is one thing she has to say about sleep, quoted directly from the book on page 125:

“Comprimising on sleep can impede weight loss and impair your body’s ability to restore homeostasis. The body burns energy and calories best when you are sleeping, and lack of sleeps impairs cognitive function, immunity, hormonal balance and digestion. Several studies have cited inadequate sleep as one the causes of the obesity problem in America.”

02-05-2013, 05:14 AM
Is it just me but basically getting a big clear yes makes me very depressed. I just want to give up but I won't. I may come off slower. I'll have to accept this. I can't really change my job or shift. I'll try to focus more on sleep. I really want this. Maybe the weeks I have to do tons of overtime (two weeks to make up for the short month), I'll focus on bed more than exercise. They say nutrition is 75% of this, right?

02-05-2013, 09:49 AM
Is it just me but basically getting a big clear yes makes me very depressed. I just want to give up but I won't. I may come off slower. I'll have to accept this. I can't really change my job or shift. I'll try to focus more on sleep. I really want this. Maybe the weeks I have to do tons of overtime (two weeks to make up for the short month), I'll focus on bed more than exercise. They say nutrition is 75% of this, right?

It's a rough break, I know. But I agree, Don't give up!! So maybe it comes off more slowly, as long as it comes off, right? There's time's I choose sleep over working out, I have a 9 month old who battles constant allergies and ear infections, there's nights when I feel like I got maybe 3 hours of constantly disturbed sleep. When he naps during the day, I join him. And you're right nutrition is the bulk of losing weight. Even if you worked out 4 hours a day but overate a lot of bad for you food, you'd gain weight. So...you'll be the tortoise. Either way, we're here for you, cheering you on!

April Snow
02-05-2013, 11:36 AM
They say nutrition is 75% of this, right?

at least - some people put the percentage even higher.

All you can do is what you can do. Don't beat yourself up over that! And if the loss is slower, then it's slower. What is the alternative - giving up and gaining more?