Episode 19

Published on:

10th Aug 2022

019 Nicole Shallow - The Anatomy of Sleep: The Impact on Athletes & Runners Alike

Episode Summary

Board-certified behavior analyst and sleep expert, Nicole Shallow joins the show to discuss why sleep is so crucial, especially for athletes and mother runners. From her own experience with struggling with sleep from early childhood, Nicole realized that knowledge is power. Through learning about sleep science, what is sleep, and how our behaviors impact our ability to sleep soundly, she was able to transform her own mental and physical health. Today, Nicole shares her passion so that others can take back the night and conquer their days. Nicole breaks down the anatomy of a sleep cycle and provides tips and best practices for optimizing sleep.

Episode Sponsor

Runner Click Pro – https://pro.runnerclick.com/

Key Takeaways

01:04 – Whitney Heins introduces today’s guest, Nicole Shallow, who joins the show to share her struggles with sleeping and how she was able to fix her sleep and transform her mental and physical health

09:01 – How the Technology Age has impacted our sleep

11:31 – Why sleep is so important, especially to athletes

14:40 – The anatomy of a sleep cycle

20:04 – Best practices for improving quality of sleep and disruptive sleep habits to avoid

26:02 – Sleep and running

35:04 – Benefits of napping

38:03 – Weaning off sleep aides

40:49 – How to know if you are not getting enough sleep

46:23 – Whitney thanks Nicole for joining the show and lets listeners know where they can connect with her

Tweetable Quotes

“The Technology Age really has impacted sleep for everybody. And the research is pretty pronounced on that where, especially in teens and children, they’re learning to soothe using technology.” (09:02)

“When we sleep, all of the healing happens, both mentally and physically. And the research is unable to find any system in the body that doesn’t benefit from this. Hormone balance, muscle repair and growth, mental health and managing thoughts and emotions, and problem solving. All of these things happen while we sleep.” (12:07)

“Your REM sleep is so important for emotional regulation, storing memories, and a lot of your mental health side of things too.” (16:42)

“It is figuring out what your body needs. So, if you ask yourself, ‘Am I getting injured? Am I getting sick? Are these things happening to me? Why can I never get ahead or move forward in my running?’ Maybe it is taking a look at the sleep and seeing if you can improve the quality of the sleep that you’re getting. Sometimes it’s not even about quantity; it’s the quality.” (19:29)

“Alcohol actually limits your REM sleep as well as your deep sleep. So, your sleep is sedated. You’ve effectively sedated yourself into sleep, because that’s what alcohol is, it’s a sedative. And you’re not going to achieve those same quality deep restorative sleep. You’re not gonna spend that much time there. And then same with REM sleep; you’re not gonna get much of it. That’s why sometimes if your body is processing it overnight, you get kicked out of REM sleep.” (24:37)

“Sleep begets sleep. So, the more sleep that we get, the more sleep that we want. So once kids start sleeping through a couple of those wakings - and it’s not conscious - their bodies want more of that.” (33:26)

Resources Mentioned

Whitney’s LinkedIn – https://www.linkedin.com/in/whitney-heins-02ba3b5

The Mother Runners Club – https://www.themotherrunners.com/

Nicole’s Website – https://www.yourbehaviourgal.com/

Nicole’s LinkedIn – https://www.linkedin.com/in/nicoleshallow/?originalSubdomain=ca

Nicole’s Instagram – https://www.instagram.com/yourbehaviourgal/?hl=en


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About the Podcast

The Passionate Runner
Running has so many benefits for the mind, body, & soul. But it can be SO hard to keep going because, let’s face it, RUNNING IS HARD!

Join lifelong runner, running coach, and mother of two, Whitney Heins, as she talks with experts in areas such as nutrition, training and physical therapy to share their insider knowledge so you can run your best & BE your best in the time that you have.

If you’re an avid runner, we’re here to help you understand the science, simplify the complicated and remove hurdles so that your next run is not only fun and fulfilling, but fuels you with passion and purpose.