2 Full Body Exercise Routines for Better Sleep

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By: , SparkPeople Blogger
3/8/2011 5:30 PM   :  29 comments   :  17,859 Views

This past Monday kicked off National Sleep Awareness Week (March 7th-13th) bringing attention to the important role sleep plays, not only in our overall health, but our weight loss journey as well. Studies have shown that over the years the amount of sleep many of us get each night has dropped from approximately 10 hours a night to just under 7. However, doing some form of exercise, including cardio and strength training, on a daily basis has been shown to give us a better quality of sleep, therefore making us more productive, have more energy and better concentration.

Performing a full body strength training routine just a 2-3 days, with at least one day's rest in between workouts, should be all it takes to get you well on the road to better health and better sleep.

Included below are two full body routines--one with machines found at your gym and the other routine using with free weights, resistance bands or using your own body weight. This will allow for greater versatility when you can't make it to the gym.

Lower Body Machine Exercises

Leg Press

Leg Curl

Seated Calf Raise

Upper Body Machine Exercises

Chest Press

Seated Row Machine

Shoulder Press

Preacher Curl Machine

Seated Dip Machine

Lower Body at Home Exercises

Weighted Plie Squat

Bridge Roll

Calf Raises on a Step

Upper Body at Home Exercises

Dumbbell Chest Press

Seated Row with Resistance Bands

Shoulder Press with Rotation

Biceps Curl with Resistance Bands

Triceps Dip

Do you think exercise has improved your quality of sleep? Do you strength train at least twice a week?


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Comments

  • 29
    Thanks, I am going to try the home exercises to sleep better. Would be wonderful if they help me. - 3/11/2011   1:38:26 PM
  • 28
    thanks for this article! - 3/11/2011   12:57:05 AM
  • DODDSE
    27
    Good suggestions. I will have to try these. - 3/10/2011   10:27:58 PM
  • 26
    Is there any evidence for effects of milder exercises, such as walking, on sleep? The kind of walking one might do getting to classes on a large college campus, for example? (multiple daily walks of 15-20 minutes each) - 3/10/2011   9:26:59 PM
  • 25
    Yes, but kinda in an unfortunate way. Strength training doesn't help, so if I don't get at least some cardio in falling asleep is super hard. That means on busy days it takes me FOREVER to fall asleep!! - 3/10/2011   10:12:00 AM
  • UMMM613
    24
    I strength train 2-3 days/week and do cardio the other days. I have sleep issues (possible apnea), but do find that the days i do a weight session i sleep pretty good. I also enjoy the sore feeling the next morning when I wake up ;-) - 3/10/2011   8:16:20 AM
  • 23
    I do a total body ST workout on Tuesdays & Thursdays and I do sleep better for the most part. - 3/9/2011   10:55:42 PM
  • 22
    It certainly has, as long as I don't exercise too close to bedtime. then I'm up half the night. I still have a hard time turning off my bedroom TV at a reasonable hr. and fall asleep with the TV on. - 3/9/2011   5:16:52 PM
  • MIRYROADS
    21
    Has it occurred to anyone that exercising just to be exercising is a relatively modern phenomenon? Earlier generations didn't have time or the need for this as their work was often very active (farming, mining, housekeeping and cooking without modern appliances, etc.) Maybe that's why many find it so difficult to force themselves to exercise. Perhaps we should just go back to work. A retired friend of mine folds one piece of laundry then puts it away and comes back to fold another instead of folding them all and making a single trip to stow them. It's inefficient and time-consuming, but she does get in a lot of walking. - 3/9/2011   5:05:29 PM
  • SWEETMAMA29
    20
    I just started strength training. I know it makes you tired. I have sleep apnea with an oxygen machine. I sleep good for 2 or 3 hours, than I wake up. This goes on for the whole night. I'm use to it now. I hope the exercises do help. - 3/9/2011   4:38:17 PM
  • PROPMAN1
    19
    Am back to working out again and can already (happily) feel the change in sleep and energy. - 3/9/2011   3:06:14 PM
  • 18
    I found this to be very true for me I was a poor sleeper till I did more strength exercises. I joined a challenge and did it more regularly and it has broken my plateau of Almost 6 months. Definitely RIGHT ON. - 3/9/2011   1:16:05 PM
  • 17
    Strenght train 2 - 3 days a week and it does help with quality of sleep. Feel that exercising in general helps with sleep, but also everything else. - 3/9/2011   12:45:21 PM
  • 16
    I am a retired teacher and have the time to work out at the gym usually three days a week. I do notice that I sleep the best on the days I have had my workouts. The benefits are so great, I can't imagine not doing this! - 3/9/2011   12:00:07 PM
  • GAARAMA
    15
    I do strength exercises but since I do not have any issue with sleep I can't say it has any effect on my sleep. - 3/9/2011   11:45:29 AM
  • 14
    I went to the Biggest Loser at Fitness Ridge in December of 2009. We hiked for 2 1/2 hours every day and returned to the resort to 4 45 minute "classes", ST, cardio, boxing, etc. We were warned that we would get great sleep while we were there, we didn't. Most of us the week I was there reported no improved sleep. Maybe it would take longer for the exercise to help our sleep. Insomnia queen here, I'll try anything. I walked 10 miles over 3 1/2 hours yesterday, no better. - 3/9/2011   11:10:49 AM
  • 13
    I strength train 4 days a week minimum, and it's a huge help in terms of sleep. (Or maybe being a PT worker and a FT mom has something to do with that?) - 3/9/2011   8:21:07 AM
  • PICKLEDGINGER2
    12
    Thanks for this helpful piece. - 3/9/2011   3:56:12 AM
  • 11
    I do try to strength train at least 3 days a week. The sleep is another issue, but I can say that it seems to be better quality when I do exercise regularly. - 3/9/2011   12:30:02 AM
  • 10
    I very much sleep better at night after doing a group of these exercises. - 3/8/2011   11:34:27 PM
  • WALLYS2
    9
    I do both cardio and strength training 2 to 3 times a week, I diffenently sleep better at night. - 3/8/2011   10:05:08 PM
  • 8
    I absolutely feel like I sleep better since I've been working out! Now to convince my hubby it'll work for him too. :) - 3/8/2011   10:03:10 PM
  • 7
    I've found that when I work out (which is right now 5 times a week) I absolutely sleep better. I have an easier time falling asleep and staying asleep. Sometimes if i've done heavier weights or a harder workout I'm sore so that can wake me up occasionally but I definetly noticed a difference in my sleep from when i didnt work out until now! I also think that while I'm working out I can think about the things that are bugging me so I'm not dwelling on them when I go to bed! I still have trouble waking up in the mornings though and I get about 9 hours of sleep but I have never been an A.M. person! - 3/8/2011   9:44:37 PM
  • 6
    I don't notice much a different in my sleep whether I train or not, but I think that's probably just because other stressors in my life have a greater impact in my sleep than my physical activity. - 3/8/2011   9:21:24 PM
  • JCLARK712
    5
    I exercise at least 4 days a week i do cardio and strength training. The most sleep i get per night is about 5 hours. I always wake during the night and i just watch tv until i get sleepy. My sleeping habits are aboout the same as they were before i started exercising more. - 3/8/2011   8:59:23 PM
  • 4
    This is so on topic for me! Thanks Sparkpeople!
    I am currently on the Sleep Challenge here.
    The BIGGEST factor for quality sleep has been a committment to switch off all electronics by 11 pm.
    Together with my exercise routine, I now sleep easily for at least 8 hours!
    - 3/8/2011   8:32:18 PM
  • 3
    When I'm exercising consistently I'm generally more relaxed and in a better mood, which make getting to sleep easier. But I've found that often on days when I ride my bike long distances, I have trouble sleeping. It's like the extended cardio exercise winds me up, and I have a hard time getting to sleep. A good strength training session never seems to do that to me. - 3/8/2011   8:22:52 PM
  • 2
    I have KettleBells and I love how easy and fun they are to use. Like Jack LaLanne said "Keep those LEGS, because if they go, YOU go." So, to remember Jack who passed away recently at 96, I am working at this. I'm only 61, so I got lots of time to work at it. - 3/8/2011   7:00:34 PM
  • 1
    I was an avid weight lifter and a power lifting competitor when I was in my 20s. When I stopped competing and life began to intrude my lifting fell away. Now that I am fighting the battle of the bulge I have once again taken up the weights. At first I was too sore to sleep - but now that it has become routine I find that I am pleasantly tired and fall asleep quickly once my head hits the pillow. - 3/8/2011   5:52:17 PM

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