Optimizing the mind body connection
In the gym, you will frequently hear a strength coach talk about the mind body connection. This is especially true when discussing bar speed. Think speed, is a common phrase in my gym because more speed on the bar translates to greater power output and superior sports success.
As much as I hate to admit it, there is a life outside of the gym and if your brain is working at its best then your life will be better. Do now the question arises, just how do you make this mind body connection work, and how can you develop it outside of the gym?
One way is to give the brain the best possible environment in which to operate. You do this by staying physically active throughout your life. There have been a number of studies demonstrating a clear link between physical activity and higher levels of brain functioning. The neurons tend to regenerate and grow leading to the ability to concentrate better all with a daily regimen of physical activity.
As one would suspect, the counterpart to physical activity is sleep. The loss, over time, of even small bits of nightly sleep can begin to affect daytime functions and efficiency levels. Truly, a good night’s sleep is worth its weight in gold. Some people may find it difficult to sleep well, therefore a few of the following ideas may help.
One of the proven ways to get a good nights sleep begins with an active day, followed by a period of unwinding before going to bed. Naturally, another source of sleep disruption is caffeine, thus avoiding caffeine could be a solution to this problem. Even drinking less of this substance during the day could help get you better sleep later on in the evening.
On a different note, if you are having nightly sleep disturbances or are accumulating a serious sleep deficit then talk to your doctor. There may be other conditions causing this to happen such as chronic pain, or maybe sleep apnea (1) .
(1) A temporary cessation of breathing during sleep, experienced by some people.