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Weightlifting Improves Sleep – Plus More Tips for Restful Nights

by | Dec 11, 2019

Weightlifting has countless health benefits for people over age 50, all throughout life. Resistance training for mature adults keeps us from losing muscle mass as we age. You might already know that it helps with weight loss, balance, blood pressure, and mood.

Did you also know that it helps with sleep, too?

That’s right. Just one session of resistance training helps us fall asleep faster, studies show. One session helps what’s called “sleep consolidation,” or the brain’s ability to store memories and learning.

Weightlifting also improves general sleep quality. And it reduces the severity of sleep apnea, improving sleep and reducing disruptions that create chronic tiredness.

The relationship between resistance training and sleep works conversely: Good sleep is essential for exercise, too.

So, here are some other tips for ensuring a good night’s rest.

  • Limit caffeine in the afternoon and evening.
  • Cut back on alcohol, especially having too much before trying to sleep.
  • Avoid computers, cell phones and other electronic devices for 90 minutes before bedtime. The lighting is too stimulating to our brains.
  • Keep your bedroom cool and dark.
  • A hot bath 90 to 120 minutes before bedtime can help.
  • Don’t eat a big dinner too late or drink water close to bedtime.
  • Keep a routine of going to bed and waking up at the same time.
  • Avoid afternoon naps.
  • Try to get some sunlight every day.
  • Stay active – with fitness, socializing, volunteer, etc.

Sources: WebMD, IDEA Health & Fitness Association