Lagoon | Sleep + Fitness News - August 10th

Lagoon | Sleep + Fitness News - August 10th

👋 Hey pack members,

From challengers racing the 8x8x8 to racing minds when your head hits the pillow - there’s plenty of exciting topics to cover in this week’s sleep + fitness news.  Let’s get into it…

The Inaugural 8x8x8 Challenge is Underway! 👟😴 🔁

On Tuesday morning, more than 65 bold participants toed the start line to compete in the first-ever 8x8x8 Challenge, where they’ll run 8 miles and be in bed for 8 hours for 8 days straight.  We’re tracking the action, including sharing all of the highlights on Instagram, and updating the leaderboard daily.  Show your support by following along  and dishing out likes, high fives, and comments on Instagram to keep them going.  The final day of the challenge is next Tuesday, August 16th.  Finally - a big “thank you” to all of those who are showing their commitment to a healthy sleep + fitness routine by being a part of the 8x8x8! 

😨 Why Our Minds Race When We’re Trying to Sleep

Are you one of those people who have all your thoughts, to-do’s or stressors pour into your brain as soon as your head hits the pillow?  You’re not alone. According to Virginia Runko, a psychologist and sleep specialist in Washington D.C., “many of us are busy all day, every day, and some thoughts get suppressed because we’re just dealing with what’s in front of us right now — putting out fires, cleaning, cooking, taking care of children,” Runko explained. “Your first moment of quiet might be when your head hits the pillow.”  In other words, the thoughts that weren’t given the space to be processed or appreciated during the day finally boil over when you settle down for bed.  The best way to avoid this is really putting an emphasis on your wind down routine, and giving your brain some space to decompress  those thoughts and stressors before you lay your head on the pillow.  

🫃 Your Gut Health May Be Counting On Great Sleep

We know the clear ties between quality, consistent sleep and your overall health, but new research suggests there’s an acute relationship with your gut health.  Researchers found that only a 90-minute difference between sleep time and wake-up time can interfere with gut microbiome composition. They also found that social jetlag (the difference in sleep amounts on week nights versus the weekend), was associated with lower diet quality, higher sugar consumptions, and lower intake of fruits and nuts. These factors can influence the microbiota in your gut and cause higher levels of inflammation and cardiovascular risk. “This is the first study to show that even small differences in sleep timings across the week seems to be linked to differences in gut bacterial species,” said Wendy Hall, PhD, senior author from King’s College London.  More research is needed, but all signs point to consistent sleep helping create a healthier gut.

⚽️ USWNT Soccer Players Using Tart Cherry Juice for Recovery

Several studies have shown that tart cherry juice can help reduce muscle soreness and improve sleep quality. This has led to a strong push in the sports and fitness community for the usage of cherry juice in helping athletes recover.  The US women’s national soccer team is among the list of believers.  The players drink it to “enhance sleep and promote good sleep quality,” said Ellie Maybury, the team’s head of performance. It also helps them “from a muscle recovery standpoint, those anti-inflammatory properties that kind of help their muscles recover,” she said.  Some scientists remain skeptical of its efficacy, but there is clearly a growing body of research to support its usage - plus if you want to perform like the pros… do as they do! 

📲 A Beginner’s Guide to Sleep Apps 

Not ready to splurge on a pricey sleep tracking device like Oura or Whoop?  Well there’s a really nice selection of (free) sleeping apps out there that can help you not only track, but also improve your sleep.  This recent article highlights seven of the most popular sleep and relaxation apps.  The app Sleepa allows users to select specific sleep journeys and has an impressive library of sounds that help you fall asleep.  Then there’s Pzizz which is dedicated to relaxation, and harnesses the power of “psychoacoustics.”  It’s a bit trippy.  Finally, if you’re looking for a more robust experience, check out the paid SleepSpace app  that will provide sleep journeys and sounds similar to Sleepa, but on top of that has solid sleep tracking and integrated sleep coaching.     

That's it for this week's sleep news highlights. Stay tuned for more exciting updates on optimizing your sleep and health, and remember to follow @lagoonsleep on Instagram for your daily dose.

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