Do You Sleep to Perform? Tips for Better Sleep

by tinareale on December 13, 2012

Have a burning desire to break a previous personal record in one of your fitness endeavors? Need to not crash and burn energy-wise every afternoon? Hope to get healthier or lose some weight? Find yourself with an uncontrollable snack attack every day? Sleep can affect all those things tremendously. In order to live well, we simply must #SleeptoPerform every night.

That means we should aim for the recommended seven to nine hours…nightly. We can’t make up for it on the weekends and eeking by on four to six can really catch up with our bodies over time. In order to ensure I get enough sleep, I try to focus on the following technique to maximize my shut-eye.


#SleeptoPerform Tips

  1. Make a Regular Sleep Schedule. With my usual 4 am wake-up call on weekday mornings, that means my head hits my Technogel pillow by 9 pm at the absolute latest almost every night. It may make me a grandma, but I know it matters. My body seems to know this schedule by now, so I wake-up a lot easier with the regular routine. Although, I don’t believe 4 am is ever an easy time to wake-up. That’s early!
  2. Have a Sleep Routine. In addition with having a regular time to head to bed, I also have a few things I like to regularly do to prepare my body for sleep. I typically drink a hot cup of tea while snuggling down on the couch with Peter and either a good book or a favorite show. Basically, I do things to relax and shut my mind off nightly. You could also do such things as listening to white noise or taking a hot shower.
  3. Watch the Caffeine. For awhile, I realized I wasn’t sleeping too well at night and had a lot of difficult falling asleep. Then, I realized I had started drinking a second cup of coffee a bit later in the morning or early afternoon. By removing it or switching to decaf, my sleep fell right back to normal. Also, caffeine isn’t the only thing that can hinder sleep – alcohol can as well.
  4. Eat Lighter. I also noticed that when eating heavier dinners at night, I had trouble falling to sleep. By eating lighter meals later in the evening or giving my body a couple hours to digest, I don’t feel as uncomfortable when lying down to sleep. I also make sure to include some complex carbohydrates in my dinners as they boost seratonin levels and promote better quality sleep.
  5. Have Quality Bedding. I have to admit – this is a new one to me. I’ve always been the what can I get for a bargain at the local mass bedding store type of shopper. I also had been sleeping with the same cheap pillow for the past 4-5 years. It was sad and deflated….and had me waking up every morning with pretty bad shoulder and neck stiffness. Then, through FitFluential, I received the offer to try out a Technogel pillow of my choosing.

I had already heard such rave reviews from friends that I figured my neck would appreciate one of their anatomical pillows. Without a doubt, my neck certainly did appreciate that decision. First, though? What is Technogel and what makes their pillows so special?

Technogel creates a variety of different pillows aimed to fit the different styles of sleeping and different body sizes in order to provide an optimal sleeping experience. To further enhance that level of comfort, each product comes with their special Technogel technology. Here’s how they put it:

Technogel® is the material of which dreams are made:unique soft-solid polyurethane gel that through the years has been used for different and creative applications. Technogel® is the most adaptive, flexible, and incredible material you have ever experienced, which moves like the water having memory the shape of a solid body. For this reason Technogel® is considered the quintessence of comfort.

Yep. Definitely what they said. Here are some key features of the pillows:

  • 3-D Deformation: The pillows fully mold themselves to each individual’s physical structure while still providing support, so you don’t feel like you’re pillow is a black hole swallowing your face. Just cushy and comfortable.
  • Durability: Made from products that will not age or harden, so the pillow keeps its quality over time.
  • Thermal Regulation: I LOVE THIS! It keeps cool. No more sweaty have to turn the pillow and feeling so clammy in the middle of the night wake-up calls.

What does that matter compared to whether or not it actually feels good to sleep on? It all adds up because this pillow completely raised the bar on my sleep. In just over a week, I have significantly less neck and shoulder pain when I wake up in the mornings. I have slept more soundly overall at night.

I feel sooooo good every time I lay down and it takes no time at all for me to drift off. I used to shuffle from my back to my side to my front and back again just trying to get comfortable night after night after night. I didn’t even want to go without it for the few nights I traveled this past weekend. And it was a good thing I brought it with me since it certainly helped me sleep better the 2 nights leading up to my race.

The key question – would I buy this myself? YES! Without hesitation. And we may be buying one ourselves for Peter to use. So he stops trying to steal mine at night. It would be worth every penny too. You can’t put a price on sleep. #SleeptoPerform

Interested in learning more? Visit the Technogel website, view their products, and find them in a store near you. Connect with Technogel by visiting them on Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube.

Your Turn: What things do you need to do or have in order to #SleeptoPerform? 

I received this pillow from Technogel and FitFluential to review. All opinions expressed are my own.


1 Miz December 13, 2012 at 6:28 am

oh GIRL I so so so need this.
my sleep sucketh as of late.

2 Coco December 13, 2012 at 7:05 am

This looks great! I have the wrost sleep habits ever. I fall asleep watching tv between 10 and 11, drag myself up to bed around midnight, change into PJs in a half-sleep stupor, and eke out a few more hours of sleep until my alarm goes off at 5. Maybe if I had a great pillow I’d go to bed earlier!

3 Lindsay @ The Lean Green Bean December 13, 2012 at 7:49 am

i’m a terrible sleeper. i need one of these.

4 Katie @ Talk Less, Say More December 13, 2012 at 7:54 am

I think I need that pillow….

5 tinareale December 13, 2012 at 6:47 pm

You do. It is amazing! I love love love love love it.

6 Natalie Melchiorre December 13, 2012 at 8:00 am

Gar! Why does better sleep always have to mean developing a sleep schedule and routine! Haha, it’s just so hard to maintain at night. Things pop up in the day and some nights I have more to-do’s to squeeze in. I’m getting better though, and I feel better! Sticking pretty well to a 10:30pm bedtime. Now, just how to keep that going on the weekends? :/ …

7 Linz @ Itz Linz December 13, 2012 at 8:08 am

I definitely need a good pillow to sleep. I hate when hotels have those super flimsy or super floppy pillows – I need some stability!

8 Lee December 13, 2012 at 8:34 am

I am actually extremely good at sleeping! I am one of those people who falls asleep as soon as my head hits the pillow.

Yay sleeping.

9 tinareale December 13, 2012 at 6:47 pm

I have only become one of those people after getting this pillow. Seriously. I was NEVER one to fall asleep quickly. I was always jealous of people like you. ;)

10 Madeline @ Food Fitness and Family December 13, 2012 at 8:39 am

I LOVE my Technogel pillow and Chris has tried to steal it for the last almost year. I sleep SO much better with it.

11 Lisa @ RunWiki December 13, 2012 at 9:00 am

Sleep is my chocolate.

12 Kathy December 13, 2012 at 9:02 am

Now try to work with them to give the rest of us a discount on the pillow please… ;-)

13 [email protected] December 13, 2012 at 9:05 am

I love to sleep. I am usually a really good sleeper. But, I know that I don’t get enough hours. The only way I see that changing is to learn to sleep in again, but I highly value my early morning quiet time, so that’s not going to happen.

14 misszippy December 13, 2012 at 9:24 am

I am totally the princess and the pea when it comes to sleep–all the elements have to be just right! That said, sleep is SO important to me. I am a mess when I get shorted. I think this pillow might be a great addition for me!

15 Ashley @ My Food 'N' Fitness Diaries December 13, 2012 at 9:33 am

Sleep is most definitely a priority to me. I don’t and never will understand the people that can consistently get by with less than seven hours of sleep. I’m just NOT myself when I don’t get my eight hours. I make sure I follow my body’s schedule (go to bed by 10:30 and wake up at about 6:30), I don’t drink caffeine past 2 or 3 PM, I try not to eat anything too sugary or heavy right before bed, and I make sure I’ve prayed and had my “quiet time” so that my mind is a little more at ease. And 4 AM?! Dang girl!! Why oh why? ;)

16 tinareale December 13, 2012 at 6:49 pm

Haha! The joys of being a work from home mom. I have to work when the kids are sleeping. I eventually got used to it. ;)

17 Michele @ Nycrunningmama December 13, 2012 at 9:33 am

Oh gosh…I am like you, Tina. I have the cheapest pillows that I could find. We just invested in a really nice mattress and I have found that I look forward to sleep every night b/c of how comfortable and restful the sleep is!! I need to look into these pillows =)

18 tinareale December 13, 2012 at 6:50 pm

They would feel heavenly on tight nursing neck/shoulders/back. I wish I had one then! I always had the worst neck/back/shoulder pain then.

19 Paige @ Your Trainer Paige December 13, 2012 at 10:00 am

I need to follow this advice! After two nights of good sleep, I’m back to crummy sleep. Urgh!

20 Angie @ Losing It and Loving It December 13, 2012 at 10:12 am

I’m thinking we would love these pillows. Well at least Kev, I am so picky when it comes to my pillows. I have heard great things about Technogel though.

And I agree, it’s important to have quality bedding and that includes a BED. I can’t believe we spent as much as we did on our iComfort bed from HHGregg but it’s amazing how my consistent back issues totally went away. And Kev’s too. We love this bed. I’m sure the Technogel would be a great addition.

Great tips!

21 Rachel @RunningRachel December 13, 2012 at 10:17 am

Oh how nice! I have been coveting one of these pillows for MONTHS! This tired mama misses her sleep. :)

22 Lisa December 13, 2012 at 11:13 am

I love sleep, but I’m the worst sleeper ever. I’m an early bird, but also a night owl. I get about 5 hours per night…yikes! I really need this advice, and to actually follow it:)

23 Molly @ Just Your Average Athlete December 13, 2012 at 11:13 am

I have to have a consistent sleep schedule and I always unwind before bed to shut my brain off. Too much overthinking before bed wreaks havoc on my sleep quality.

24 Laura @ Mommy Run Fast December 13, 2012 at 12:03 pm

I have been staying up later than I’d like the last few weeks, and I’m paying for it. Thanks for this reminder- sleep is so important!
And I just signed up for the next round of boot camp, yay!

25 tinareale December 13, 2012 at 6:51 pm

I saw your name come through and got all excited!

26 Tara Golzbein December 13, 2012 at 12:25 pm

Tina, why the heck are you getting up at 4am??!?! Gosh thats early!!! I have to tell you how much I adore you and your blog. You help me keep things in perspective spiritually, as a mother and in relation to our bodies and to love our bodies for more than they look like but what they do also. Instead of WWJD, its WWTD!!! I commend you for being such an example to live by! XOXO

27 tinareale December 13, 2012 at 6:52 pm

Aw, thanks Tara! Although I have to say the man, Jesus, has it a lot more together than I do. So stick with WWJD? ;)

And 4 am – it is sooo early. But if I’m gonna work and not have it overlap my time with the kids much…well. Gotta do what I gotta do. haha!

28 Angela @ Happy Fit Mama December 13, 2012 at 12:44 pm

I’m constantly in search of the perfect pillow – not too flat and not too puffy. This sounds like heaven!

29 [email protected] December 13, 2012 at 12:48 pm

I LOVE a good pillow!! ANd you’re right, it totally makes a difference, for sure :)

30 Ashley @ Coffee Cake and Cardio December 13, 2012 at 12:49 pm

Since starting to play football I’ve seen first hand how bad sleep affects my play time. It’s not just length of time but also quality!

31 Rachel B - Busy Mama December 13, 2012 at 1:01 pm

Hmmmm I might have to look into that. I wake up constantly at night so even 9 hours in bed isn’t refreshing. Time to go obsess on their website. :)

32 Lauren @ Oatmeal after Spinning December 13, 2012 at 1:42 pm

I think I need to buy this for my husband for a Christmas present! Thanks for providing such a thorough review. :) We both wake up super early (around 4:30/4:45 most days) and don’t usually get to bed until about 10:00. I know that doesn’t seem late to most people, but it’s definitely too late when you get up that early! I’m with you grandma- going to be early is where it’s at.

33 Heather @ Better With Veggies December 13, 2012 at 2:14 pm

I’ve been interested in these for a while – I am really picky about my pillows. Definitely important for a good night’s sleep, and I’m a big believer in sleep! I have to have a cool & really dark room to have a sound sleep – the dark I help by wearing a face mask. And I have a sound machine. I’m a high maintenance sleeper. :)

34 tinareale December 13, 2012 at 6:54 pm

You’re like Makenzie. She has a sound machine, has to have her fan on, and about died when she saw a Hello Kitty face mask for sleeping.

35 Heather @ Better With Veggies December 13, 2012 at 6:57 pm

Yea…apparently not everyone likes the noise. When my sister and I had to share a bed recently, she left because she couldn’t sleep through my sound machine. :)

36 Christine @ Love, Life, Surf December 13, 2012 at 2:49 pm

I sooooo need this. Sleep is something that I really need to work on. Actually, it has been one of my goals for BBB so have had some success but I still need to be more mindful of my sleep habit. And I’m coveting your Technogel pillow!

37 Stefanie @ Thin Vegetarian December 13, 2012 at 4:03 pm

Great tips! I actually have a TempurPedic pillow that works quite well for me.

38 Pavement Runner December 13, 2012 at 7:20 pm

UGH. I need to sleep better. I’ve become to accustomed to little sleep before working out or even a full day. I know it’s bad. Goal for 2013: #SleepToPerform

39 Julia H. @ Live Young & Prosper December 13, 2012 at 9:22 pm

I am ALL about sleep. That is one category that I am extremely good at staying healthy in–I always get my 8 hours. I happen to be someone who does not do well at all when I haven’t slept enough, so I make it a top priority to rest up!

40 Clare @ Fitting It All In December 13, 2012 at 9:25 pm

I have the worst neck and shoulder pain – NEED to try a good pillow!

41 Bek @ Crave December 14, 2012 at 12:50 am

I find with my schedule I get the best sleep when I can sleep in a bit the next day. The bf likes to stay up late so we have later nights usual between 9-11. However, I get to sleep in till 8 before gym (most mornings that is) with it only being broken when the bf disturbs me to get up/dressed or kisses me goodbye. Saying that the past 2 mornings I haven’t remembered him kissing me goodbye- I was a goner.

42 [email protected] December 14, 2012 at 11:05 am

You definitely cannot put a price on sleep and it really is the basis of all other health. Without quality sleep the rest of your day and how you perform is completely out of whack. I’ve never had trouble sleeping until these past 6 months and I can’t figure it out. I only drink one cup of coffee in the morning, and never eat after 9 pm. I thought it might be stress but I don’t feel that stressed out during the day. Maybe I need to buy myself one of these pillows, it looks pretty amazing!

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