Thursday, February 12, 2009

You Snooze...You Lose

Or so I hope anyway.

A while back I wrote a post called We're Breaking Up about my struggles with my weight. I have this...shall we say...bootylicious problem that I continue to struggle with. Anyway, this past Monday, The Today Show on NBC did a story on how your sleep habits affect your weight. I heard about it from a friend (I'm a Good Morning America gal) and had to check it out.

Apparently everyone (but me) knows that lack of sleep can contribute to weight gain and getting the right amount of sleep can actually help you lose weight. What?!?! So all I have to do is sleep MORE and I'll lose weight? Of the women who participated in the study, nearly all of them lost weight and one who lost no weight, still managed to lose inches! Over the course of 10 weeks they lost anywhere from 6 to 15 pounds! They made no other significant changes except to sleep at least 7 and 1/2 hours each night.

Okay, think about it. When you become a mom, it gets harder to keep your weight down...when you become a mom, you also get a lot less sleep. We live in an obese country...we live in a busy, sleep deprived country. I'm just putting two and two together people. The studies show that those who "sleep 5 hours or less a night are 30 percent more likely to gain 30+ pounds than those who got more rest". "The average woman gets 6 hours and 40 minutes." The healthy minimum is 7 hours 30 minutes! Go to the article here to read all the details. It's fascinating.

I'm a night owl. After the girls go to bed, that's MY time. Just me and Daddy. I like to savor it as long as possible so I always go to bed LATE. Unfortunately, the girls always wake up at 6:15 on the dot. I'm not missing the healthy requirement by a whole lot, but that 7.5 hours is a minimum! At this point, I have about 2 non-elastic waist pairs of pants that fit so I'm willing to try anything. And I do love to sleep.

So Monday night, my Bible Study was cancelled and I was in the bed by 8:30pm and asleep by about 9:30. That would be 9 hours of sleep...except...Little Sister was up at 4:30am. 7 hours! Just short by 1/2 an hour! I tried again Tuesday night and the SAME THING! I'm starting to think she likes me big and soft and these are her attempts to keep me that way. Finally, last night, I went to sleep at 10:00pm and the girls came downstairs at 6:15am. That's a little over 8 hours...and I feel thinner already.

So how much sleep do you get each night? And what do you think about this study?

1 comment:

Montee said...

I have heard about this study. Okay, I will tell you this. I don't sleep as much as Phillip does. Yes, I have gained some weight over the years, but I never have considered myself fat. I get between 6 and 7 hours of sleep. Phillip gets between 10 and 12. Plus he gets a nap everyday which could be between 1 to 2 hours. Now that is A LOT of sleep. He has had trouble with his weight for a few years now. He does gain weight during the ball season because of the weird lifestyle but usually loses the weight in the off- season. Last year he did not lose the weight in the off-season, meaning he gained more weight on top of that last summer. He was still sleeping a lot. So, this off season we both went to a gym and had a few sessions with a personal trainer. The trainer gave us a routine to do on our own. With discipline we have slimmed down and gained muscle. Phillip has lost almost 25 pounds since October. He still gets his daily nap and all that sleep, but I really don't think that alone is much help. I guess in a way more sleep can help. You're not awake to eat.