November 26, 2015

more sleep for olympic style weightlifting

I've found I need 1 to 1.5 hours more sleep a day now than I did when I was a hard core triathlete. I'm only training an average of about 6 hours a week weightlifting. When I was a triathlete I was training an average of 22 hours a week. It's amazing to me I trained almost 4 times as much as an endurance athlete as I do as a weightlifter, but I need significantly more sleep now. 

The last 3 or 4 weeks I've had the best sleep of my life! For the last few years I had been struggling with sleep apnea. I wasn't sleeping well and I was constantly tired beyond belief. I assumed the sleep apnea was from obesity. In the last month I've lost 13 pounds. That's a drop in the bucket of what I need to  lose, but I've lost almost all of my problems with sleep that I had developed. There's no way losing 13 of the 140 pounds I'd gained made my sleep apnea go away. Now I'm beginning to wonder if my sleep apnea had to do with my weight gain or if it had more to do with the severe depression I had been in. Can depression caused sleep apnea? I'm not certain, but i know one thing for sure, I'm unbelievably grateful to no longer feel chronically exhausted and overworked. And I'm even more appreciative to no longer feel constant despair and hopelessness. 9 years of working 80-90 hours a week had beat me down physically and emotionally. Since I had never suffered from depression before I didn't realize how it gradually worsens. Like a frog in a pot of water that is gradually brought to a boil. The frog doesn't realize it's in a life threatening situation until it's almost to late because it had worsened so gradually. I now understand why they call depression the silent killer. Especially with men. We don't ask for help. No matter how bad things get we always say everything's fine, until it's to late. Even more so with Correctional Officer's. Machismo is huge among corrections employees. That's one of many reasons why the suicide rate among correctional officers is so high. Studies have shown the rate of PTSD of correctional officers is higher than combat vets. I've lost a lot of my fellow correctional officers by suicide the last two decades. 

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