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Sleep Essentials for Running Performance

Good sleep health is important for everyday physical and psychological health and wellbeing as well as running performance.

In this episode learn about why we need to sleep and discover the health and performance consequences of inappropriate sleep length and quality. 

We also delve into and discuss specific foods and nutrients known to either help or hinder deep sleep.  


Learn about WHY we sleep and find out the definition of Good Sleep Health.  


Discover the importance of sleep for physiological and psychological health and wellbeing. 


Learn about the health and running performance consequences of poor sleep health. 


Exploring the Female Factors linked to sleep. Do females get enough sleep? 


Is the cumulative amount of sleep you get over a day as important as a long period of sleep? Listen in to discover if a cat nap during the day could be beneficial to health.  


Moving on to discuss the interconnections between sleep and nutrition. The negative impact of caffeine and alcohol.


Discussing key aspects of food and nutrition to support good sleep highlighting specific macronutrients and micronutrients including: protein, carbohydrate, B vitamins and magnesium. 


Discover the primary negative effects of poor sleep health on running performance with a focus on poor sleep’s impact on recovery.


Key Takeaways:

  • Sleep is important for everyday health as well as running performance
  • Poor sleep can affect recovery from training and blunt training adaptations
  • Carbohydrate and protein rich foods consumed early evening may support sleep
  • Quick release CHO and protein for dairy products have been shown to be most beneficial, but remember to keep your choices healthy
  • Any food consumed in the evening, make sure it is eaten at least 1hr before bed
  • Remember eating too much too late can have adverse effects on sleep
  • Kiwi fruit and tart cherries, as well as Mg and B vitamins are important for serotonin and melatonin production. 
  • Try and ensure you get approx. 8hrs sleep per night CONSISTENTLY

Related Episodes:

Sports Nutrition Foundations for Female Runners

Vitamins and Minerals for the Female Runner


The suggestions we make during this episode are for guidance and

advice only, and are not a substitute for medical advice or treatment.

If you have any concerns regarding your health, please contact

your healthcare professional for advice as soon as possible.

Aileen Smith and Karen Campbell met at as nutrition students (Institute for Optimum Nutrition, London) and became lifelong friends and nutritional buddies! Both have a love of running and a passion for nutrition, delicious food and healthy living.

Together they host RUNNERS HEALTH HUB. A place for like-minded runners who are looking for simple ways to support running performance, energy, endurance, and general great health.

We are excited to be able to share our expertise, experience and short cuts with you. We hope you’ll join us again. If you’d like to know more about us and She Runs Eats Performs please check out our TRAILER.

If you’re ready to make learn more about how you may introduce easy nutrition into your running and training plan join our Easy Nutrition For Healthy Runners Online Programme for short videos, recipes, downloads and LIVE training and Q&A.

As a THANK YOU to you as one of our valued listeners, we have a special offer for you use COUPON CODE POD to get 33% discount off the full price which brings the price to £199.

If you’d like help from Karen and Aileen to design a personalised sports nutrition plan for your running – please contact them at

Happy Running!

Aileen and Karen