Regular Exercise and Sleep

Regular Exercise and Sleep

Exercise and Sleep: 

There are so many reasons to regularly exercise, and sleep is just one of the many benefits.

Did you know exercising regularly can…

// Improve Sleep Quality

People who exercise regularly sleep sound and restfully. Physical activity can also increase the time you spend in deep sleep. And in turn, deep sleep helps your body:

  • Boost immune function 
  • Support cardiac health 
  • Control stress and anxiety 

// Increase Sleep Duration

Exercising regularly can also increase the length of your nightly rest. Being physically active requires your body to use energy, which then helps to tire you out and prepare you for rest at the end of the day. 

// Reduce Stress Levels and Relieve Anxiety

Not only can regular physical activity reduces your stress levels, it can also be a useful remedy for anxiety and other mood disorders. Just 5 minutes of exercise can trigger anti-anxiety responses in the body. Yoga and stretching can help to relax the parasympathetic nervous system, as well as: 

  • Lowering your body’s cortisol levels
  • Reducing blood pressure 
  • Having a positive effect on your mood 

// Decreases Daytime Sleepiness

Again, and again research has found that consistent exercise reduces daytime sleepiness, which is true for almost every age, and every fitness level. It’s believed this impacts on the most frequent causes of daytime sleepiness including depression, obesity, diabetes, and sleep deprivation. This is due to exercise being such a great aid to alleviating the symptoms of these problems and help to mitigate them.

// Can Help With Insomnia and Other Sleep Disorders

If you suffer from insomnia, exercise can be an effective natural therapy. Research has suggested that aerobic exercises may be particularly effective in helping to reduce the symptoms of insomnia. But these benefits tend to kick in over time, rather than immediately, so it’s important to keep up your exercise sessions.

// Watch Out for Timing

When it comes to timing, be aware that exercising too close to bedtime may interfere with sleep. Working out too late may leave you feeling energized and stimulated right before bed, and delay your transition to sleep. This is because your body stays elevated for about 4 hours after you finish exercising, a high body temperature can interfere with your natural falling core body temperature as your body begins to wind down and ready for sleep. So, avoid anything more than a light stretch or relaxed yoga.

// Your Muscles Grow While You Sleep

What your body really needs after a long run or an intense bodyweight training session is recovery. Your muscles need to rest too, and this is just as important for you as the actual workout itself. The longer and the better you sleep, the more time your body has for that recovery and growth. 

// How much is right?

Everyone is different, so there is no “one size fits all” answer to this. However, it is recommended adults aged 19- 64 should do at least 150 minutes of moderate aerobic activity every week, and strength exercises on 2, or more, days a week that work all the major muscles (legs, hips, back, abdomen, chest, shoulders and arms).

According to research, the most significant sleeping benefits comes from exercise that is consistent, and routine over time.


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