Surprise! Exercise Can Help Us Sleep … but only if …

A new study shows that just as those of us with insomnia have been told, exercising sleep helps us get a good night’s sleep. In fact it can be a much better choice than sleeping pills! But, wait. Then why to so many people who try exercising, even to the point of feeling exhausted, still have problems sleeping? The study by Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine published in the Journal of Sleep Clinical Medicine suggests why.

Seems there is a caveat. Exercising today probably won’t help you get a better night sleep tonight. Long-term exercise combined with better sleep habits is what makes the difference. The key seems to be a combination:  

Sleep Illustration

 1)      At least 30 minutes a day of regular exercise three or four times a week

2)      Going to bed and waking up at the same time each day,

3)      Avoiding coffee and other stimulants at night

4)      Keeping bedrooms dark and cool

There were no immediate results. But for those who took these steps regularly for 16 weeks the results were very good. They began to go to sleep more, easily, sleep more soundly and sleep longer. So exercise is a great RX for insomnia but only if we do it regularly in combination with good sleep habits. If you would like more information or assistance, please contact me.