No matter if you live in a large or small city, there are big chances that you lead a fast-paced life. Because of this, a lot of experts encourage people to take breaks from their busy daily routines, and instead, they recommend that we get back to nature. This is why you might be thinking about taking a really long hike with your family members or friends.
But, as you probably know, taking a long hike isn’t easy and you’ll need some time to get prepared. Besides gathering all your equipment and exercising, you must also ensure that you get enough sleep. If you’re wondering why it is important for the preparation process, the article below will shed some light on the entire topic, so, without further ado, let’s take a look:
1. It’ll Improve Your Concentration
Did you know that the amount of sleep we get will influence several of our brain functions including our productivity, concentration, and cognition? Yup, if you don’t get enough of it, it’ll be harder for you to concentrate during the hike, which means that you might not be as productive as you want.
When we say productive, we mean that you might not achieve the mileage you wanted to for one day, hence, it’ll take a longer time for you to complete the hike. Additionally, a lack of sleep will cause you to retain information slower, meaning that you might not remember certain routes, something that could lead to you getting lost.
2. Less Risk of Someone Getting Hurt
A lack of rest will impact your focus, hence, when you cannot concentrate on the trail ahead of you, you might end up, for example, stepping on the wrong stone, falling, and injuring yourself. This is something that you’ll want to avoid at all costs, especially if you’re planning on taking a hike alone and in a completely remote area, where help cannot arrive right away.
This is why you’ll want to ensure that you get enough rest while you’re preparing for the hike, however, you should also ensure that you get enough sleep throughout your hike. Keep in mind, you’ll have to rest in a tent, which is why you need to take the right equipment with you.
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3. You’ll Consume Fewer Calories
Any physical activity, including hiking, will help you regulate your weight, however, when you get enough rest, it will help you consume fewer calories the next day. A lot of studies concluded that sleep patterns will influence the hormones responsible for our appetite, which is why you should ensure that you get enough hours of rest.
If you don’t, it could lead to your body improperly regulating your food consumption, which can lead to an increased appetite, hence, instead of regulating your weight by hiking, you might end up gaining it. This is why you must ensure that you get enough sleep before and during the hiking.
4. You’ll Feel More Energized
A lot of people don’t know this, but, there are waste products that form in our brains while we are awake. These products are eliminated while we’re resting, which means that they can actually clear our brains from the toxins that hinder us from thinking clearly and that lead to us having lower energy levels.
Once the toxins are eliminated from your brain and body, you won’t only have more energy for your hikes, but, you’ll also be able to think clearly and focus on the route ahead of you. Additionally, more energy also means better athletic performance, which leads us to our next point…
5. Your Performance Will Improve
When you’re physically active for an entire day, you’ll require more sleep. This means that resting for about 6 to 8 hours won’t be enough for you, instead, you should get at least 10. After all, you’ll want to ensure that you give your body enough time to recover and heal from the strain.
If you do, you’ll definitely be able to perform better, your coordination will be improved, and you’ll also be able to walk faster than you usually would. Improved performance means that you’ll be capable of completing the hike in a timely manner, leaving more time for you to enjoy the nature around you.
A Few Tips to Keep in Mind
Before we conclude this article, there are a few things worth mentioning when it comes to hiking and getting enough slumber. For starters, you should always stop walking at least 3 hours before you’re planning on going to bed. Why? Well, when walking, your body releases a hormone called cortisol, which will keep you awake.
Hence, if you want to get enough sleep, you should stop being active before bedtime. When you stop for the day, you should also eat dinner and allow your body to digest it for at least an hour or two. You could drink some cocoa or tea, as well as eat some cookies before bed, especially since this combination will lead to you feeling drowsy. Keep in mind, you must avoid drinking coffee before bed, mostly because it will cause difficulties for you to fall asleep.
Lastly, you’ll want to avoid taking naps throughout the hiking session. Yes, you will feel energized after taking a nap, but once the effects wear off, it will be more difficult for you to function properly. Also, ensure that you go to bed at your usual time, so that you don’t mess up your rest patterns and rhythm.
If you’re planning on taking a long hike by yourself or with family and friends, you must know that one of the most important things that you could do is sleep enough. By doing so, you’ll feel more energized and focused, but more importantly, your performance will improve, hence, you can successfully complete the hiking trail you opted for.
So, now that you know why it’s important for you to get enough sleep before and throughout the hike, you shouldn’t lose any more of your time. Instead, you might want to do some digging online in order to learn how you can make sleeping in a tent and camping cot more comfortable for yourself.