Not getting enough sleep — about 7 to 8 hours a day for adults — or getting poor quality sleep increases the chances of high blood pressure, elevated cholesterol, and atherosclerosis (fatty deposits building up in arteries). Lack of sleep has also been linked to weight gain, diabetes, and inflammation, all of which can worsen cardiovascular disease.
Magic cure to improve your sleep is closer than you can imagine.
Areobic activity has been suggested to improve sleep quality. But we’re going to talk about the effect of resistance training for sleep quality. Researchers say resistance training may be better for getting quality sleep than aerobic exercise because post-workout fatigue and muscle recovery can promote better sleep.
The results speak for themselves.
- This study looked at 386 adults meeting the criteria for being overweight or obese. Subjects were also inactive and had elevated blood pressure.
The participants were randomly assigned to a no-exercise group (for comparison) or one of three exercise groups (aerobic only, resistance only, or combined aerobic and resistance) for 12 months.
The exercise groups did supervised 60-minute sessions, three times a week, with the combination exercise group doing 30 minutes of aerobic and 30 minutes of resistance exercise.
The resistance group did sets on 12 machines, working all major muscle groups in each session.
More than one-third (35 percent) of participants had poor quality sleep at the beginning of the study. Among the 42 percent of participants who weren’t getting at least 7 hours of sleep, after 12 months, sleep increased by about:
- 40 minutes for the resistance exercise group
- 23 minutes in the aerobic exercise group
- 17 minutes in the combined exercise group
- 15 minutes in the control group
Sleep efficiency increased in the resistance exercise and combined exercise groups, but not in the aerobic exercise or no exercise group.
Resistance training is the key to better sleep.
Resistance training builds lean muscle mass, which can increase overall metabolic rate. The resulting muscle fatigue and the body’s recovery process lead to better sleep.
Resistance training typically involves more instances of maximum or near-maximum effort compared to cardio. This causes fatigue and delayed-onset muscle soreness post-workout, and may contribute to the psychological feeling of improved sleep and recovery.
Alicia Pate, PhD, an associate professor of medical anatomy and physiology at Ponce Health Sciences University Saint Louis in Missouri, told Healthline that resistance training helps the body produce a chemical called adenosine, which promotes sleep. Adenosine binds to cellular receptors, inhibiting neural activity and causing drowsiness. Resistance exercise improves all aspects of sleep, with the greatest benefit being sleep quality.
The mechanisms by which resistance exercise alters sleep remain largely unknown. Resistance training could potentially improve sleep by improved symptoms of depression or anxiety, alterations in energy expenditure, increase in body temperature, or relief of musculoskeletal pain, for example.
Resistance training is suitable for everyone.
Specific exercises aren’t necessarily important when it comes to training for better sleep. There’s no specific type or duration of resistance training optimal for improving sleep. The ideal workout will vary significantly based on the individual. The most important thing, for healthy adults, is that the resistance workout is challenging and physically taxing.
When you’re also interested in resistance training that’s going to improve not only your quality of life but also your sleep, get in touch with me email@example.com and we’ll find the best option for you.