Exercising is important for the overall wellbeing and health of the body, as it builds endurance, condition the body, manage weight, and stay calm. It is also a stress buster, and in fact as per research by Harvard Medical School, exercise reduces levels of the body’s stress hormones such as adrenaline and cortisol.
Notwithstanding the obvious benefits of exercising regularly, the timing and intensity of your workout is a major factor that could impact your health and wellbeing. Exercising late into the night can have an impact on the quality and duration of sleep. As per a research published by Sleep Medicine Reviews, straining yourself with acute high-intensity exercise before going to bed will impact the quality of your sleep.
1. Increases alertness
When we exercise, the adrenal gland gets activated to produce adrenaline, which is known as epinephrine. Epinephrine kick-starts the heart to get into the top gear, thereby increasing the heart rate.
This boosts the blood flow and oxygen levels in the muscles, which helps overall performance. However, epinephrine is a stimulant, which increases alertness, and hence, disrupts sleep.
2. Stimulates the nervous system
Vigorous workouts and strenuous physical activity can stimulate your nervous system and raise your heart rate, which could take time to normalise. This will make it difficult for you to fall asleep.
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A few examples of rigorous exercises include running, swimming, cycling, and heavy weightlifting. Moreover, besides physical exhaustion, exercising also demands mental effort.
The nervous system needs time to recuperate, as it is a critical component for hand – legs – eye coordination. In case the nervous system is in overdrive, it may lead to wobbling and shaking of the body, causing muscle soreness and pain, and impairing the quality of sleep.
3. Reduce muscle growth
The muscles break or tear when you lift weights or do intense cardio workouts, and resting is the primary way to heal the muscles and supplement their growth. As working out before going to bed could impact the quality and duration of sleep, your muscle growth may suffer as a result of a lack of adequate rest.
So, ladies, ensure to workout regularly, but avoid doing so just before going to bed.