Improving Sleep for Triathletes

I’m starting a new weekly post called the 4th Sport. It’s designed to be a short hint, tip, hack or link that gives an idea or fact that may propel you a bit further on your triathlon journey.

We’ll start with sleep. Odds are that you’re doing it wrong or maybe you could, with a few small changes, get better, more beneficial sleep. Here are some tips to get you started.

  • Set your watch to remind yourself to start getting ready for bed at the same time every day.

  • Try some tart cherry juice at bedtime. Cherry juice is a natural source of melatonin.

  • Dim the lights & turn off your screens (TV, laptop, phone) about an hour before bed.

  • Stop drinking beverages with caffeine about 4 hours before bed.

More and more detailed information in the links below.

James Maas is a social psychologist and professor at Cornell University, known for his work on sleep and performance. He has at least 4 books on the subject available on Amazon. If you’d like me to read his book: Sleep to Win! and write a review, post a comment on the blog.


Sleep Hygiene

Tips on improving sleep hygiene from the National Sleep Foundation

Sleep and the Elite Athlete

Article on the effects of sleep deprivation and sleep extension on athletes.

The World’s Best Performance Enhancer: Sleep.

10 sleep strategies for peak athletic performance from the fatigue science blog.

Tart Cherry Juice for a Better Night’s Rest

A short post on the People’s Pharmacy about trying tart cherry juice.


Al Dockery is a PTA (physical therapist assistant) based in the Upstate of SC. He is a former award-winning writer and editor, who has worked for publications including Textile World and Furniture Today. He is a NC native and a NC State graduate.

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