“Sleep to Win!” Testimonials

“When in competition or heavy training, sleep is the most important factor in achieving my optimal athletic performance. I need at least 8 hours of sleep a night for me to feel fully recovered and energized to play my absolute best. If I don’t meet my sleep requirement, my legs feel heavy, my reaction time is slower and my ability to think and  act quickly is negatively affected.”

Rebecca Johnston, 2010 Olympics Hockey Gold Medalist for Team Canada

RebeccaJohnston

 

 

 

As a young teenager, Sarah was looking for an extra edge that would help her realize her Olympic figure-skating dreams. Like most teens, she was barely sleeping 7 hours per night and had an irregular sleep-wake schedule. She was also drinking coffee to stay alert after getting up at 4:30 a.m. for practice, spending all day in school, and then practicing more in the afternoon. This two-a-day schedule, although traditional in many sports, is a sure sleep and performance thief. So I devised a new kind of training program for her – one that required 9¼ hours of sleep every night, with consistent sleep and wake times, and of course far less caffeine. This assured she would get the sleep she needed for someone her age, including the all-important “sleep spindles” that occur only after at least 6½ hours of continuous sleep. These spindles trigger a cascade of calcium in the brain, which enhance motor-muscle memory. In other words, this is when Sarah’s body and mind really learns all those fancy moves she was practicing. The most challenging part, though, was convincing Sarah and her coach to forgo the early-morning practices. But they agreed to the experiment and, although she was an underdog at the 2002 Olympic Games, she came home with the gold medal

Sarah Hughes: Olympic Gold Medalist

Sarah hughes

As a high school freshman in Michigan, Amber was not expected to contribute much as a varsity cross-country and track runner. But after hearing me speak on the importance of sleep and athletic performance, she decided to significantly change her habits. Together, we created a plan – she committed to getting 9¼ hours of sleep per night, following a consistent sleep-wake schedule, even on weekends, and she got a Zeo machine. Her first scores were in the lower 90s, but now she’s reached all the way to 142. As a result of these new habits, not only did she make the varsity team, but she broke four school records that season and won a silver medal at states.

Amber Way: A Real Sleeper

AmberWay

To be a champion trap and skeet shooter, you have to consistently hit at least 490 out of 500 targets. At 16 years of age, Jon wasn’t doing that despite lots of practice. After hearing me speak about the importance of sleep and athletic performance, he established a 9¼-hour per night sleep schedule and, within a week, saw his scores rise. As a member of the U.S. Shotgun Team, he has since won numerous national and world titles. Here’s a note I received from his dad:
“We cannot thank you enough.  We are true believers in [your work].  You not only made a difference for a young USA Athlete, but it was Jon Michael’s gold-medal win that put the United States on top of the medal count, edging out China in the 2011 World Cup competition in Sydney.  Jon Michael is intently focused on the amount of sleep he receives during the competition season to achieve and maintain peak performance.”

Jon Michael McGrath II: World Caliber

Jon McGrath

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