Thursday, September 29, 2005

Exercise And Sleep

Studies generally suggest that exercise helps to promote sleep for individuals with insomnia. Below are some of the benefits exercise provides:

  • Adrenaline is released, increasing the heart rate and metabolism, naturally fatiguing the body.
  • Brain activity is increased due to increasing levels of oxygen being transported.
  • Endocrine system is activated, normalizing stress hormone function.
  • Endorphins are distributed throughout the nervous system, interacting with opiate receptor neurons and creating a sense of euphoria.
  • Anxiety levels are significantly reduced.
  • Muscle tissue is broken down requiring rest to repair.
  • Elevation of body temperature may beckon sleep to regulate.

Some points to keep in mind when exercising:

  • Outdoor exercise may be especially beneficial, since Increased light exposure aids sleep and acts as an anti-depressant.
  • Some research warns to not exercise too close to bedtime. The increased metabolic rate may cause restlessness.
  • Morning may be the ideal time to exercise, as it influences circadian rhythms that may positively affect sleep quality.

The benefits of exercise go far beyond those described in this post. In general, a regular aerobic exercise schedule should help to improve your sleep patterns, reduce stress levels, and increase vitality and energy.

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Blogger Anna Resendiz said...

I am looking for a yoga position to do right before bed to help me release stress and prolong sleep. I sleep for the first three or four hours fine and then I am restless or give up and get up and find something to do.

7:57 AM  

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