4 stages of your sleep cycle 😴

Did you know there are four stages of sleep that we cycle throughout the night?

We need all four for optimal health, recovery, and performance (mentally and physically).

The recommended amount of sleep for adults is 7-8 hours per night. Some people need more, few people can thrive on less.

During those 7-8 hours, we cycle between four stages of sleep to help our bodies recover.

Light Sleep:

Transition to deep sleep. You are responsive to your environment during this stage.

Slow Wave Sleep (SWS) or Deep Sleep:

Your muscles repair and grow during this stage. It is also when your body produces 95% of its daily supply of growth hormones. When you wake up during this stage, you are groggy!

Rapid Eye Movement (REM) Sleep:

Your brain is restored during the REM stage. At this time, ideas and skills acquired during the day are cemented as memories. This stage is especially important for athletes learning technical skills. This is when we have our most vivid dreams.

Deep and REM are your restorative sleep.


Wake sleep stage because it is natural to be awake for brief periods many times in the night.it is common to experience as many as 10-20 over the course of a night’s sleep.

Have you ever considered tracking your sleep? There are several devices and apps available to help you accurately track your sleep but even the simple act of writing down when you went to bed, when you get up, how you feel when you get up and your energy levels throughout the day can help you notice patterns. When we look at these patterns we can begin to identify habits that encourage good sleep patterns and habits that may be causing you to not get your best sleep.

What’s really interesting is when you start taking note of what positively and negatively impacts your sleep (food, exercise, alcohol).

Here are a few tips to keep in mind to improve your sleep:

  • Limit caffeine intake up to 10 hours before bed
  • Limit alcohol consumption
  • Daily movement (30-minutes per day)
  • Follow the plate method and limit food intake within two hours before bed
  • Sleep in a dark and cold environment

If you struggle with sleep, this could slow your progress to reach your health and wellness goals. Sometimes you may have all the other pieces in place (nutrition , exercise, hydration) but you are still not achieving your goals. Sleep may be the thing that you need to work on.

A good bedtime routine is a good start towards a good night’s sleep.

If you would like to work on your sleep habits, Coach EJ would love to help. Your wellness is important to us and good sleep can make a world of difference in your quality of life.

Book an intro appointment HERE with Coach EJ to discuss how you can work on getting a better night’s sleep.

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