Several sleep studies have found that exercising during the day helps you sleep better at night. In fact, simply walking one mile every day as an elder adult can aid in normalizing your sleep cycle. However, in general, a doctor will recommend that you get at least 150 minutes of moderate-level exercise per week or 75 minutes of intense level exercise. Some try to argue that they are too fatigued to attempt any exercises, but this is a vicious cycle caused by lack of activity. If you do not properly exercise, you may experience shallow sleep cycles, which make it tough to have a good night’s rest. The most important thing is to find the right kind of exercise for your daily routine. How, where, and when you exercise can have a major impact on your sleep cycles. Due to this, it is best to plan your workout ahead of time. Below are some of the best exercises to get a good night’s rest.
Aerobic exercise is the type that gets your heart pumping, but isn’t intense enough that you cannot speak while doing it. It is recommended that you try to get in at least 20 to 30 minutes of aerobic exercise every day for maximum benefit to your sleep schedule. You can do any sort of aerobic exercise from jogging to swimming to biking to dancing. Additionally, using an exercise machine like the elliptical is a great way to get a moderate aerobic exercise session in to help you sleep. Sleep studies also show that those who regularly do aerobic exercises produce more growth hormone, which helps their body repair itself while they sleep.
Late Afternoon Exercises
Although you may already feel tired from the day during the late afternoon, exercising during this time can help you feel awake and energized for a few hours, but then also use the rest of your energy stores so that when it comes to falling asleep you’ll be dozing off in a few minutes. Additionally, having an energy release in the late afternoon can allow you to go into a deeper sleep at night. However, if you prefer to exercise in the morning, this can still be extremely beneficial as morning activities will wake you up and keep you energized throughout the day. It will also help you sleep at night as studies have shown that getting outside into the sunlight in the morning will help adjust your sleep cycle so that you feel energized when the sun is out and tired enough to fall asleep at night.
Workouts Four Hours Before Bed
It is imperative that you keep your intense workouts to at least four hours before attempting to fall asleep at night. This is because you must balance draining the rest of your energy stores and allowing your body to get restful sleep before bed. If you do intense exercises to close to your bed time you risk your body being too amped up to be able to simmer down and fall asleep.
Incorporate Daily Exercises
If you are having trouble finding the time in your schedule to work out, then incorporating exercise into your daily routine is an excellent way to get some activity in your life. For instance, you may want to try parking your car further from your workplace so that you are forced to walk a longer distance or choose to take the stairs instead of the elevator. Doing these types of things use up the excess energy that is stored in your body. Every day try to increase the amount of activity that you get by aiming for a minimum of 10,000 steps.
Improve your sleep at night by doing an easy yoga routine right before getting into bed. You should be aiming for a relaxation-based yoga, with more emphasis on stretching than fast movements. Doing light yoga exercises before bed will help you ease your stress, as well as any tension you have built up in your muscles. One great yoga move to try out before bed is an upside down pose for two minutes. You can do this on your bed by aligning your buttocks on the wall and putting your legs up in the air. Do this for two minutes while you slowly breathe in and out.
Stretching is great for releasing tension that has been built up throughout the day. A great stretch to do before bed is to sit cross-legged and gently twist your back, with your left shoulder moving to the right. Hold it for thirty seconds and then proceed to do the opposite way. Sleeping with a stretched out back allows your body to be much more relaxed and comfortable so that you can get more restful sleep. Ensure that you do not attempt this stretch if you have previous back problems.