ZZZZZZZZZZ - The Sleepy Runner Post

So, you're a runner. And your focus is on long distance running. Your weekly mileage is 35+ miles / 56 km in a rest week. In the peak of marathon training your mileage hits 50 miles a week or higher. You're no Paula or Kara, but your mileage is crazy enough. You work full time or are a full time mom / dad, you have a social life and you want to get all these miles in. Every single week. Plus, you do some strength training. And, if you get to it, some cross training.

That's at least 10 hours a week into your training. Plus the hours that are taken by work/parenting and having something that could qualify as a social life, your week is pretty much filled with work / activities / running / etcetera. That's one busy life! Sleeping becomes less important. You come home from your PM run on a weekday, and don't want to go to bed right away. You have a good book waiting for you. Let's read a bit in that one. Or, you taped your favorite sitcom and want to watch that before you go to bed. And before you know it, it becomes normal that you get about 6 to 7 hours of sleep, or less, in per night. Before you know it, it's day to day business that you wake up still feeling tired and not really revived.

And that affects your running. Having a busy life and being a runner isn't always easy. There you go, I said it. Heck, I admitted it. And apparently I could have known this (well, to be honest common sense could have done the trick...). This Runnerworld.com article explains how important it is for runners to get enough hours of sleep per night.


For me, this article is a true eye opener. I have been feeling tired lately, and besides that, easy runs seem less easy than they did a couple of weeks ago. I'll have to make sleeping part of my training plan. 6-7 hours of sleep per night is just not enough for this girl. That good book / cocktail hour / late night movie will have to wait. At least, for now. So, starting tonight I will try to get at least 9 hours of sleep in...per night. No excuses. No watching tv while already in bed. No turning the pages of that good book, because I'm desperate to find out who's that serial killer. Running means just too much for me.

Does a lack of sleep affect your running / training plan? How many hours of sleep do you need?

Days left 'til New York Marathon:

Yeah, RunningRonald, I know, I totally stole this one from you, but I just think it's a great idea! :) Consider yourself honoured. ;)


Anonymous said...

funny how that works. In order to run better we need more hours of sleep. In order to fit running into our schedules we need to sleep less. AHHH

Silly Girl Running said...

@ Katye: You're so right...it's just not fair that a day only has 24 hours. ;)

misszippy said...

Yeah, I'd say my social life takes a back seat when marathon training. I'm ok with that--it's all about priorities and sleep is mine!

Silly Girl Running said...

@ MissZippy: I'll try...I'll honestly try... ;) But I can't promise that I will skip every cocktail hour. ;)

shellyrm aka jogging stroller mama said...

I feel that I am not sleepy I am physically tired. Big difference.
I get about 4 -5 hours of sleep most nights. (Clearly not enough!) But I am not sleepy throughout my day. I feel physically tired. That is my recent struggle to find a schedule that allows for my miles without making me have the tired body feeling. (And let me tell you CEP Compression is a God send! I wore another brand last night and they did NOT help my legs at all! bummer!)
I'd love to get about 6 hours of uninterrupted sleep a night but....
...maybe when I don't have any little kids crying that will happen.

Silly Girl Running said...

@ Shelly: Hahahaha; yep, I guess non-crying kids will help you get some extra hours of sleep in. ;) And those CEP socks are what make it possible to stick to my mileage. You're right; God Send! :)