It's kind of mind blowing, really - science tells us our bodies need sleep (one of the best things on the planet!). But most of us don't get enough of it.  

Hold up. Yep, this is crazy.

Here's the thing - sleep is good for you. Especially for those of you who are consistently crushing HIIT workouts, sleep is the secret ingredient to taking your fitness and your health to the next level.

We tend to operate in "I need more hours in the day" mode, and unfortunately sleep is usually the first thing that gets cut in order to make up the extra time. But you're doing yourself (and your workout) a major disservice by skipping out on some much-needed shut-eye.

Lack of sleep can actively affect your performance during session. When you lead a healthy, active lifestyle, your body needs sleep for rest and recovery. When you're well rested, your body is able to perform at a higher capacity (in our ALTR sessions, that means increased speed, heavier weights, more reps and even more energy). A tired, sleep-deprived body during session? Not quite. 

And then there's the after effects. While working out, you tear muscle fibers (this is a good thing). You know when these muscle fibers repair and grow more muscle? While you sleep.

Not to mention, lack of sleep causes your cortisol levels to increase (this is the stress hormone that is associated with gaining weight). What's worse is that your body is also producing extra ghrelin when you're lacking sleep. Together, cortisol and ghrelin impact the areas of your brain that leave you feeling hungry, even when your body is full. 

Plus, lack of sleep impairs your ability to concentrate, dulls your attention and makes you forgetful. It also lowers your sex drive (not fun) and is linked to physical and mental health issues, including depression, heart disease, stroke and diabetes.

And yes, all this sh*t can go away by ensuring you get the right amount of sleep each night.

Head to bed a little earlier each night, or let yourself sleep in a bit longer. Let yourself rest up, ALTR Army. Your body has earned it. Sweet dreams.