Every day I try to get some rest. Part of it comes at night. By 10:00 PM I want to be asleep because I’m awake at 05:30 AM. I don’t use an alarm, I just wake up. I’m even awake before my dogs. If I’ve gotten a full day of training and practice in I’m not waking up during the night. Some days that’s not possible and I’m still more likely than not to sleep straight through the night.
Sleep is amazingly important. In my opinion so are naps. As an athlete you may find that you need a lot of sleep. More sleep can mean a better performance. Sleep is part of my training program.
Recently, a top archer was asking for advice to help with muscle soreness and joint pain. He’d been ramping up his training and was paying a price – that price being delayed onset muscle soreness. Aside from many of the initial remedies that came to mind as he explained his ailments, rest was the first thing that came to mind. Other than cutting back practice a bit, ensuring proper recovery time, the right amount of sleep is paramount for a successful training plan.
I take a nap nearly everyday after lunch. Not long, only about 30 minutes and most of that I just lay still with my eyes closed. I never go into REM sleep.
Over time, my dogs have joined in the naptime. They nap a lot, but napping with me seems to make them happy. It’s like the pack laying down together.
I lay on the floor when I nap. I don’t want to get on the bed, I’m too dirty and it is too comfortable. Thirty minutes on the floor is perfect. Afterwards, I’m up, reloaded for the afternoon workouts and have had a nice pause while my lunch digests.