We live in a day and age where PED use is high, almost anyone you look up to in the athletic realm will have at some stage used a testosterone enhancing substance or SARM of some kind.
These are the PEDs we all know and hear about but there is one that isn't spoke about enough and it is the easiest to get. Everyone has access to it, but most people neglect it which is costing them their health and decreasing their performance.
So what is the ultimate performance enhancing drug? Sleep.
Now stay with me here, I know it is confusing when you have a range of seemingly "successful" people telling you to sleep less, to wake up at zero dark hundred to workout or to get a headstart on your day.
But let me tell you why more sleep is a good idea for you. Firstly it is crucial for testosterone production, less sleep will mean lower testosterone levels, that right there should solve it for most of you.
I will say, waking up early is absolutely fine if you have been asleep for about 7-8 hours before hand, if you haven't, close your eyes and go back to sleep, if you can't I would say there's probably some deeper issues you should look into. We all know 8 hours is the golden standard but I understand that sometimes when you're getting after it, 6-7 is all you can get, but aim for 8.
Let's look at professional athletes and how they look at sleep.
Lebron James is known to get 8-10 hours of sleep per night with a 1-2 hour nap during the day. Why? Sleep enhances performance, promotes recovery, regulates mood and promotes healthy brain and body function.
Mat Fraser, A CrossFit legend, multiple time fittest man on earth has spoken about sleep being his secret weapon and how it is underutilised by athletes around the world. Why? Sleep enhances performance, promotes recovery, regulates mood and promotes healthy brain and body function.
Rich Froning, the GOAT of CrossFit, What did he do when he was the reigning champ? He stopped using an alarm, he prioritized sleep and woke up when his body naturally woke up. Why? Sleep enhances performance, promotes recovery, regulates mood and promotes healthy brain and body function.
Now, I understand it is different when you're a professional athlete. We don't all have the luxury to sleep the day away, but we can do our best to get the recommended amount of sleep.
I have another great example of why sleep is important.
I sat down to talk with a wealthy oil and gas tycoon about Warfighter Athletic and our plans for the future. During this conversation we discussed the challenges of entrepreneurship and the importance of being able to handle a high level of emotional stress.
He told me a story about getting a phone call at 2AM, an oil rig was on fire and they were at a loss of $4M. Did he leap out of bed in a panic and try solve the problem? No, he want back to sleep because he would deal with the situation and make decisions under pressure better if he was well rested and with a full night's sleep. Trust me, this is a skill and not many have it.
The final example is SOF selection. One of the greatest tools we use to induce stress on candidates is SLEEP DEPRIVATION. We use sleep deprivation to reduce physical and mental performance because it is one of the most effective tools we can use in the limited amount of time we have to make the assessment if a candidate is suitable for further training or not.
If you don't value sleep by now...well you might be stupid or in a bad place mentally. If you are in a bad place mentally do you know what will help with your turbulent moods and anxiousness......sleep.
In summary, sleep is the ultimate performance enhancing drug. It will help you recovery from training, process emotions, improve physical performance, enhance your cognitive and creative abilities and will keep your testosterone at healthy levels.
I have been subject to a lot of sleep deprivation during my military career and as an entrepreneur. I have first hand experience at not getting enough consistent sleep and the effects it has on physical and mental health. Even now as an entrepreneur, when I prioritise sleep I am much more effective during my waking hours, my mood is more balanced and I don't have lingering anxiousness.
For the next 21 days I want you to work on improving your sleep routine, take note of how you feel, how you perform in the gym, how you perform cognitively and your general day to day mood.
Seek the edge, keep your blade sharp.