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Sleep and Athletic Performance

The world's top athletes train day in and day out; however, sleep is equally as important.

Physical conditioning, nutrition, mental focus, and sleep are all equally critical in reaching peak performance. In recent years, athletes and trainers have been taking a further look at rest days and sleep. If sleep is cut short, the body doesn't have time to repair, recover and strengthen. Although this is about athletes, the everyday performance of all individuals is affected by sleep.

athletic performance pillars

Being awake for long periods of time or a body without rest can lead to slow reaction times and impaired judgment. As shown in the Occupational and Environmental Medicine Journal, being awake for 22 hours straight can slow your reaction time more than four drinks can. And just like alcohol, sleepiness impairs judgment, so you don't necessarily know you're impaired when you are tired.

"Fatigue makes cowards of us all." – Vince Lombardi

Exercise and training deplete energy, fluids, and breaks down muscle. What athletes do in the moments during and after exercise determines how quickly their bodies rebuild muscle to maintain/strengthen endurance, speed, and accuracy. Sleep deprivation has been known to decrease the production of glycogen and carbohydrates that are essential energy for physical activity.

Even more, lack of sleep is associated with increased injury rates in athletes. As explained previously, this can also be attributed to an athlete's slower reaction times. The athlete may not be able to move out of the way fast enough or achieve balance as quick because of sleep fatigue. Over time, injuries, health issues, and minimal recover can lead to an athlete never performing their best.

Whether you're an elite athlete or just a 9-to-5er, sleep is a crucial pillar of everyday performance.


At Legend Sleep, we are always looking to improve quality of sleep for the benefit of our clients. This is why we don't cut any corners with materials and keep a very close eye on raw material and finished product quality.

Jax Mariash Sleep Performance
Jax Mariash – http://wonderwomanjax.com

Our newest athlete on Team Legend Sleep, Jax Mariash, is a professional ultra runner and entrepreneur. Jax Mariash is the first woman in the world to complete the 4 Deserts Race Series Grand Slam Plus. Jax, not only completed 1,250km of racing in 4 Deserts Race in 2016, she achieved a podium place at all five races and she was crowned the 2016 4 Deserts Female World Champion. If that wasn't enough, Jax is the also the owner of Stoked Roasters + Coffeehouse. To say the very least, sleep and recovery are extremely important when competing in extreme endurance challenges. Read more about Jax.

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