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April 5, 2012

Anxious? Can’t sleep? Exercise Could Be the Answer!

by fitnessmatters2us

You lay awake in your bed, tossing and turning.

You want to sleep, but can’t stop thinking about the big presentation you have to give in the morning. You would have exercised that day, but you were too anxious about the presentation.  Before you know it, the sun is coming up and you’ve barely slept.  Unfortunately, this has been an ongoing problem for a while. People tell you look tired.  You feel tired, too, but don’t know what to do about it.

Sound familiar?  Many people suffer from chronic anxiety-induced insomnia.  The good news, according to a recent study, is that there may be a very simple remedy to this problem.

10-15 percent of the population is affected by this disorder.  The problem is that when insomnia persists, it can affect your overall quality of life and start to wreak havoc on both your career and your social life.  So, what can you do about it?

During the course of the study, researchers discovered that 50 minutes of moderate intensity aerobic exercise (brisk walking/slow jogging) significantly reduced pre-sleep anxiety and improved sleep in the subjects that participated in the study.

Obviously there is not a “one size fits all” application to any treatment and you still may occasionally have trouble sleeping.  However, exercise can improve your overall sleep in the long run.

If someone were to tell you, that with 50 minutes of exercise a day you could likely be less anxious and sleep better, you’d jump at the opportunity, wouldn’t you?  Start exercising your way today to a better night’s sleep.  Your coworkers will thank you, your friends will thank you, but most of all, your mind and body will be eternally grateful.

Reference: Passos GS; Poyares D; Santana MG; Garbuio SA; Tufik S; Mello MT. Effect of acute physical exercise on patients with chronic primary insomnia. J Clin Sleep Med 2010;6(3):270-275.

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