Exercise is undoubtedly an important part of a healthy lifestyle. And, like sleep, it is something that many people struggle to find adequate time for. Incorporating a workout routine in your schedule may be a challenge, as getting enough sleep may be too. But both are important to your health and happiness.
Exercise and sleep tend to go hand in hand. The more frequently you work out, and when you choose to work out, may impact how well you sleep. If you work out at the wrong time, it could interfere with your sleep schedule, keeping you up at night.
So when is the best time to exercise? Morning? Midday? Nighttime? According to a National Sleep Foundation article on diet, exercise and sleep, experts suggest that late afternoon, or at least five to six hours before bed, is the best time for a workout.
According to the article, exercising at this time is beneficial because body temperature is related to sleep. Body temperatures rise during exercise and take as long as six hours to begin to drop. Because cooler body temperatures are associated with sleep onset, it’s important to allow the body time to cool off before sleep.
Exercise too close to bedtime can make it harder to fall asleep. A vigorous workout causes endorphins and metabolism to rise in the body, making you feel good and energized. Although it may seem convenient to get your workout in at the end of the day, you should be aware that exercising at night can lead to a poor night’s sleep.
If you’re an early bird, morning workouts shouldn’t keep you up at night. But make sure you exercise after getting a full night’s rest. It can be an energizing way to start your day and leave you with plenty of time to wind down in the evening. But if you skimp on sleep to get in your morning workout, it can leave you feeling tired and groggy later on in the day. Plan to go to bed early enough to allow for eight hours of sleep before your alarm rings for your morning exercise.
Exercise is good for your body and lifestyle. So enjoy your workout and your good night’s sleep!