5 Exercises That Help You Fall Asleep, Even When Stress Is Trying To Keep You Awake
Stress is literally the worst. Thing. Ever. And when it interferes with your sleep schedule? Oh, hell no — that is simply something I cannot, and will not, stand for. That's why knowing a few exercises that help you fall asleep for when anxiety is trying to keep you awake is an absolute must.
According to the National Sleep Foundation, making physical activity a priority in your schedule will help you sleep longer and more soundly when you lay down at the end of the day. But if you're already making gains on the reg and your brain is still going in circles when it comes time to hit the pillow, adding a few, low-impact, simple exercises that can be done right alongside your bed will help prepare you for that quality, serene slumber.
If you're thinking this sounds counterintuitive, and that working out a little prior to bedtime will keep you awake even longer, that's actually a total myth. Men's Health reports that busting out a few exercises in the comfort of your room will increase your body heat and relax your muscles. However, remember that it's best to have a slightly cooler body temperature right before you go to sleep, so if you work up a sweat doing some of these exercises, consider taking a quick, lukewarm shower to cool down a bit.
The next time stressful vibes are fighting to keep you awake and disrupt your snooze, try these five exercises to help you unwind and prepare for a totally blissful slumber.
1. Squeeze In A Few Squats
If you're stressed AF and just can't seem to get some quality shut-eye, start with some simple squats. According to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America, just five minutes of exercise can calm the mind and reduce feelings of anxiety. So if you start off your pre-bedtime routine with two to three minutes of sculpting those glutes, you're already halfway to squashing your stress.
Booty gains and beauty sleep? Win-win.
2. Drop Down For Some Tricep Push-Ups
Traditional push-ups might get your heart rate going a little too much before bed, but tricep push-ups are a slightly modified version that will get your blood pumping and tire you out in the best way possible.
3. Pulse It Out In Plank
Plank pose is a bit deceptive because, since you're not moving around at all, it might not come across as a workout at first. However, once you hold this bad boy for a minute or two, you'll happily collapse face-first into your pillow.
Forearm plank is an incredible core-sculptor, and since it's just challenging enough to tire you out without getting your body too hyped up, it's perfect for right before bedtime.
4. Get Long In Locust Pose
This bad boy is a lengthening yoga pose and killer back workout all in one, and it's a great movement to flow through just before bed when you're feeling restless AF.
Inhale deeply as you lift your chest and legs off the ground. and hold the pose there as long as feels comfortable. On your exhale, release the tension, and let it all go. Repeat this a few times, and your bed will look more tempting than ever in no time.
5. Wind Down With Your Legs Up The Wall
Finally, wind down from these exercises with a soothing, legs-up-the-wall pose.
This simple inversion promises incredible stress-melting powers and will be the perfect antidote to transition you into a slumber filled with sweet dreams.
And while it's great to squeeze in some relaxing yoga right before bed, if you don't have time for a full-out flow, legs-up-the-wall pose is actually the most effective pose for chilling out prior to catching some Zs.
Peace out stress, and never mess with my sleep schedule again, you hear me?