Don’t Work Out Too Close to Bed Time

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Your body needs some time to cool down.

It’s often been said that when you’re having trouble sleeping, the best, most practical solution is to get some vigorous exercise. Indeed, there’s some truth to this; after all, if your body is physically exhausted, it’ll crave rest, which will lead to a deep, restful sleep. That said, if you wanna pursue this method, you need to be particular about when you get your vigorous exercise in. When you exercise and get your heart rate up, your body switches to high energy mode. If you try to go to sleep like that, you’re just going to be staring at the ceiling for a few hours.

Studies show that the ideal period between exercise and bed time is approximately two hours. Those who worked out vigorously two hours prior to bed time experienced a faster onset of sleep, a deeper sleep state, and a longer sleep, all culminating in some excellent rest. On the flip side, those who worked out vigorously less than two hours before bed time had notably more difficulty actually getting to sleep, and even when they finally did, their sleep was nowhere near as long or deep. That’s a great way to wake up on the wrong side of the bed.

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Obviously, what with day jobs and all that, we can’t always work out while the sun is still up. If you have to wait until near the end of the day to get your workout in, try to do it in the early evening, possibly right after you get home from work assuming you get home around 5:00 PM. You should also endeavor to stick to a timeslot once you’ve found one that works, as exercising at random points of the day can lessen your gains.