Do you get through the workouts, eat the right foods and take all the supplements, but still not see your muscles growing the way you had hoped?

The video above does a great job of illustrating just how important sleep is for your body when you’re trying to build muscle. In fact, other than your actual workout, sleep might be the most important thing you can do for yourself to get your muscles growing. A lack of sleep means you have less energy to use at the gym, so you get a less intense workout. Lack of sleep also greatly increases your risk of injury and you definitely won’t be making mad gains whilst broken.

Sleep is also necessary to balance your hormones. While you’re sleeping, your body releases anabolic (muscle building) hormones like testosterone and IGF-1 (Insulin-Like Growth Factor). Sleep also lowers the levels of muscle destroying hormones, like cortisol. Basically, training plus good sleep = mad gains bro.

One more tidbit, a lack of sleep increases your levels of the appetite-raising hormone ghrelin (always loved that name, I imagine a gnome in my belly named ghrelin who’s always very hungry) while lowering your levels of the hormone leptin, which makes you feel full. No sleep = craving snacks = you get fat.

Hitting the gym is great, but if you want to grow you need to hit the sack as well.