7 Amazing Ways Exercise Enhances Your Sleep Quality
Discover the science-backed reasons why exercise leads to better sleep and how to maximize its benefits
It's no secret that regular exercise has countless health benefits, but did you know it can also improve your sleep quality? Research has consistently shown that engaging in physical activity can lead to better sleep, helping you feel more rested and energetic during the day.
In this article, we'll dive into seven science-backed reasons why exercise enhances your sleep and how to get the most out of these benefits.
Exercise has been proven to help individuals who struggle with insomnia. Regular physical activity increases the time spent in deep sleep, the most restorative stage of sleep.
By increasing the amount and quality of deep sleep, exercise can help alleviate insomnia symptoms and improve overall sleep quality.
Convenient and affordable therapy with BetterHelp anytime, anywhere.
Regulates Circadian Rhythm
Our circadian rhythm is a 24-hour internal clock that governs our sleep-wake cycle. Regular exercise can help regulate this internal clock, ensuring that you feel sleepy and awake at the appropriate times. By maintaining a consistent exercise routine, you can help your body establish a healthy sleep schedule, making it easier to fall asleep and wake up feeling refreshed.
Reduces Stress and Anxiety
Exercise is a natural stress-reliever and anxiety-reducer. Physical activity stimulates the production of endorphins, which are chemicals in the brain that act as natural painkillers and mood elevators. By reducing stress and anxiety, exercise can help create a more relaxed state, making it easier to fall asleep and stay asleep throughout the night.
Increases Sleep Duration
Research has shown that people who exercise regularly tend to sleep longer and experience fewer nighttime awakenings. The increased sleep duration can help you feel more rested and alert during the day, improving your overall quality of life.
Helps Manage Sleep Disorders
Regular exercise has been shown to help manage various sleep disorders, including sleep apnea and restless legs syndrome. Exercise can reduce the severity of sleep apnea by strengthening the muscles that control breathing and promoting weight loss. Additionally, physical activity can alleviate symptoms of restless legs syndrome by increasing circulation and reducing muscle tension.
Enhances Sleep Quality
Not only does exercise increase sleep duration, but it also improves the quality of sleep. Engaging in physical activity allows your body to spend more time in the deep, restorative stages of sleep, which can leave you feeling more refreshed upon waking.
Boosts Mood and Energy Levels
Exercise has been shown to improve mood and increase energy levels. By enhancing your mood and energy during the day, you're more likely to maintain a consistent sleep schedule and wake up feeling refreshed.
To maximize the sleep-enhancing benefits of exercise, aim for at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic activity or 75 minutes of vigorous-intensity aerobic activity per week, along with muscle-strengthening activities on two or more days per week. Be sure to establish a consistent exercise routine and avoid vigorous exercise close to bedtime, as it may make it more difficult to fall asleep.
In conclusion, exercise offers an array of benefits for improving sleep quality. By incorporating regular physical activity into your lifestyle, you can combat insomnia, regulate your circadian rhythm, relieve stress, and enjoy a more restful night's sleep.