Many fitness enthusiasts have trouble sleeping post a strenuous workout session done late in the night. While exercising is important for a list of health benefits, you can’t take a toll on your sleep. Sleep is critical for overall physical and mental health. So the trick is to develop a habits and routine that optimizes both.
You would say that give them a FLO mattress for a comfortable and well supported good night’s rest. However, these athletes or gym buffs need to put in more effort than that.
Let’s understand what causes this condition and how can it prevented-
Reason for Post Workout Insomnia
While it is difficult to identify one particular reason for this condition, we can highlight some of the factors that could be responsible for post workout insomnia.
Increased levels of hormones: Intense physical activity increases the heart rate, makes you sweat and also makes the adrenal gland active. When the adrenaline gets working, it results in the release of three hormones- adrenaline, cortisol and norepinephrine.
Adrenaline and norepinephrine are similar in nature. They keep us alert and give us the feeling of excitement. Cortisol is a stress hormone which also keeps us alert and aware when it is high.
For an individual to fall asleep it is essential that these three hormones are at normal levels. However, if we participate in an evening workout the escalated levels of the hormones may not come down easily and this could affect the sleep cycle and pattern.
Body temperature and Dehydration: It is a known fact that the body temperature increases when we exercise. Also, in an intensive training session, one loses a lot of water and body salts. Post workout it is important that you do not ignore the signs of dehydration. High body temperature and dehydration is a big contributor for post workout insomnia.
Stimulants: Consuming caffeine through tea, coffee and sports nutrition products may stimulate you to perform. However, be mindful of the amount of caffeine you consume and the time you consume it. These two factors have a direct effect on your sleep and could be a reason for insomnia.
Reasons like time of the workout and its intensity which could be a culprit for inducing insomnia post a workout too.
How to Avoid Post Workout Insomnia?
FLO would like to highlight five key ways to avoid this condition.
- Finish early: Try to finish your workout at least 3 hours prior to your bedtime. This gives your body ample time for rest and for the hormones to come back to optimal levels before you go to sleep. If possible, schedule your workout in the mornings. That will completely eliminate the issue of post workout insomnia.
If for any reason your workout is scheduled hours before you sleep, choose some low impact exercises that will not give you a hormonal rush. You may want to consider replacing the strenuous routine with a walk or a slow jog.
- Keep cool: Hydrate yourself adequately after a rigorous workout. This will optimize the levels of liquids and salts in the body and also help in bringing down the body temperature.
A shower also helps in reducing the body temperature and keeps the body cool. For many a shower induces sleep.
- Choose your beverage carefully: If you like taking a pre-workout drink, ensure it is non-caffeinated. Avoiding stimulating substances a few hours prior to bedtime can go a long way in helping you beat insomnia.
- Nourish your body: Do not skip a meal or snack post a workout. Energize your body with some nutritious food. This will give the muscles the needed energy to recuperate. But remember, too much food can make you feel bloated and too little food can make you hungry. So, eating the right quantity is as important as eating the right food.
One may also try herbal teas. Certain teas like Chamomile, Tulsi and lemon balm helps in inducing sleep. Try sipping on a glass of tea an hour before bed.
- Make your room sleep friendly: Draw the curtains, turn on the air conditioner. Use any technique to make your room cooler. Why? It is a known fact that an individual falls asleep easily in cooler temperature as compared to one that is hot and stifling.
Nulling out sound and noise can help one fall easily. Curtains and shades can block out light. There are also noise cancelling apps that can block out sounds in the room. These simple techniques can make your room more sleep friendly and help in overcoming insomnia.
Sleep is important for every living person. It is even more important for those who workout. Why? Because the 6-8 hours of sound sleep gives your muscles the much needed rest. Do not ignore sleep and rest if you are a regular at working out!
So, if you are affected by insomnia after a workout try these simple and practical tips which are easy to implement and will give definite and positive results.