If you're experiencing problems sleeping, there's a good chance you aren't getting enough exercise. Both mental and physical activities are effective ways to help you experience a deeper, more restful sleep. For some people, exercise is enough on its own to overcome their insomnia. When you exercise, you're placing extra stress on your body, and to compensate for this added stress, your brain dictates a greater need for deep sleep to aid in recovery.
Have you ever noticed during the warmer months, when you're outside and active, you tend to get tired earlier in the evening? This is due to the extended amount of time you're exposed to sunlight and the physical activity. Exercising in a brightly lit area with a lot of sunshine increases your energy levels. Also, increasing your exposure to sunlight helps control your body temperature rhythms that regulate sleep.
Do you know that almost any physical activity can help you combat insomnia? There are a few exercises that can help you fight the disorder. Follow these six exercise tips and sleep better at night.
1Use The Treadmill
A treadmill is best when used next to an open window with plenty of sunlight pouring in. It is a good exercise to keep you active during the day. As a result, it will make it easier for you to fall asleep during the night.
2Go And Try Bicycling
The movement and constant concentration needed are especially effective. You can do bicycling around the neighborhood or instead of taking your car to work, try bicycling instead. Not only does it help combat insomnia, but it also saves you money, too!
You can also use a stationary bike. It is not as efficient as a real bicycle but works great on rainy days. You can use this at the gym, or you can buy one for yourself which will spare you the cost of a gym membership.
3Enjoy Some Jump Rope
This is a good exercise to do that's stationery and requires little equipment. You can easily get a jump rope at the store for less than 20 dollars. It is a cheaper alternative to other workout equipment.
4Pump Those Dance Moves
One of the most enjoyable ways to get exercise is dancing. You can simply just dance to your favorite music at home or enroll in a dancing class. Wherever you go, dancing is surely a fun activity to do!
5Walk And Jog To Breathe In Fresh Air
This is probably the easiest way to get exercise, exposure to sunlight, and beat insomnia. You can simply walk or jog around the neighborhood or at the park. Get a buddy to walk and jog with you to make it more fun!
6Work Out Your Brain, Too
When you exercise your body and mind at the same time, you'll notice you'll get a deeper and more fulfilling night sleep. It's easy to exercise your mind while you're involved in physical activity. Some ways to do this while you're working out are doing simple math problems in your head, reciting something you need to remember, listening to an audiobook or podcast, reading a book, newspaper, or magazine.
7Avoid Exercising Right Before Bed
The best time to exercise is about 4-6 hours before bedtime. If you exercise just before you retire for the night, your body won't have enough time to cool down properly, and this can make it harder to get to sleep. Remember that you need to avoid caffeine or eating late, as well.
8Do Different Exercises Each Day
Avoid doing the same activities every day. Mix things up, so your activities keep your body and mind fresh and active. Monotony causes the effectiveness of the exercises, both physical and mental, to wane.
You may also want to keep a journal of your exercise activities and your sleeping hours. Once in a while, you can analyze what combination of exercises - both mental and physical - gave you the best sleep results. And once you're equipped with this newfound knowledge, you can create a custom workout which will improve your health and help you beat the insomnia bug for good!
Jackie Wing is an Alaska native, who enjoys snowboarding more than is probably socially acceptable. She lives in Anchorage with her two dogs Reese and Peanut, or as she likes to call them "Thing 1" and "Thing 2."