5-Ways Exercise Helps You Sleep Better

Working up a sweat at the gym can lead to more restful Zzz’s at night. Just 150 minutes of moderate to vigorous activity a week enhances the quality of your sleep by 65 percent and leaves you feeling more energetic all day.

Developing a regular fitness regimen can transform the way you sleep at night in many ways:

Helps Restore Your Sleep Cycle

Working out helps regulate our internal clocks and circadian rhythms, so you can sleep at night instead of dozing off during the day.

When is the best time to exercise? Early morning and afternoon may raise the body temperature slightly, then allowing it to drop and bring on sleepiness at night when you need it most. It also helps to exercise outdoors, letting your body absorb the natural sunlight during the daytime hours.

Alleviate Stress

Are you tossing and turning nightly with all the problems of the world circling your head? How can you relax? Science has found that even five minutes of aerobic exercise reduces anxiety. Choose any of your cardio favorites, running, kickboxing or Zumba to decrease your tension and get into a better headset. Exercise and other physical activity produce endorphins—chemicals in the brain that act as natural painkillers—and also improve the ability to sleep, which in turn reduces stress.

Improves Quantity And Quality Of Sleep

Exercise can help to improve not only the quantity of sleep but also the quality. Studies have shown that daytime physical activity stimulates longer periods of slow-wave sleep, the deepest and most restorative stages of sleep.

Combats Insomnia

Chronic insomnia is the most common sleep disorder among adults. Unfortunately exercising once in a while doesn’t do much to alleviate this problem and in fact might make it worse. A regular fitness regimen that’s maintained over a course of time could begin shifting your internal clock. But you have to be patient. It might take several weeks or months to significantly change the sleep pattern.

Decreases The Severity Of Sleep Apnea

Exercise alone is not a substitute for medical therapy in treating a serious disorder such as Sleep Apnea. With this condition, airways collapse during sleep, which causes breathing to stop briefly and restart as many as 30 times an hour, all night long.

An estimated 30-40 million Americans have this sleep disorder, which can cause severe daytime drowsiness, difficulty in concentrating and irritability. Along with medical treatment, developing exercise regimens such as walking, running on a treadmill or riding a stationary bike can help improve symptoms.

Start counting your steps to a better night’s sleep. *ENTER OUR “30 SECONDS TO WIN A FITBIT” CONTEST! Just complete our questionnaire online or in-office to enter!  * Winner to be announced January 29th.

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