What if we told you that you could build muscle in your sleep?
And what if we told you that sleeping is actually the best time to build muscle?
It sounds a little counter-intuitive.
But guess what?
It's actually true, and it means that sleep is extremely important if you want to bulk up. Skipping out on snooze-time is definitely not an option for the serious fitness folks.
Hang on, let us explain.
When you work out, you are basically breaking down your muscles.
Afterwards, a whole bunch of proteins and chemicals work overtime to rebuild your muscles and make them stronger than they were before.
It's like a work crew turned up in your biceps and started hammering and drilling and throwing their tools all over the place.
This repair process that makes you stronger continues to happen for up to 48 hours after your workout.
So what does this have to do with sleep?
Well, during the day, your body has to siphon away a lot of resources so you can do all the stuff that comes with the whole 'being awake' thing: things like blinking and walking around.
But at night?
Nearly everything shuts off, so that means more protein and chemical guys are available to patch up your worn out musculature. This rest and restore phase not only helps your body physically, it also reduces mental stress!
Weight lifters, body-builders, personal trainers and health experts will all tout the importance of sleep for muscle building, but this information always seems to end up slipping through the cracks of mainstream fitness.
After all, when you think 'big guy with a lot of muscles', we don't generally think of someone lying in bed repeatedly hitting the snooze button.
But that just might be the case. Improving the quality of your sleep will make sure you get the most bang for your buck when working out.
For more fitness tips and a personalized HIIT workout, check our interview with trainer Paris Nunn.