What is the best purchase you’ve ever made that has improved your sleep?
This question was asked on Twitter recently. The answers were all over the board.
- Sleep machines
- Sleep masks
- Sleep curtains
- High-tech gadgets
It seems like so many of us struggle with sleep. I don’t think our massive amounts of screen time help (blue light is terrible for your sleep cycle).
I’m sure all of the anxiety and depression due to the pandemic, economic uncertainty, and political unrest aren’t helping either.
However, instead of dabbling with treatments, why not go to the heart of the matter?
We require sleep to recover from fatigue. But, mental fatigue and physical fatigue are not the same.
You can be 100% mentally fatigued, but your damn mind will still choose to spin in circles while you stare at the ceiling above your bed.
Do you know what knocks me out every time? Physical fatigue.
I’m not talking about the bullshit levels of physical fatigue that people say they’re experiencing. “Oh, I’m beat. I’ve been on my feet all day!”
I’m talking about the profound physical fatigue where your body acts like a drained battery. You’re tapped out. You can’t even keep your eyes open.
Watch a dog’s behavior, and you’ll see what I mean. When our dog doesn’t get enough outdoor time and exercise, he wakes up about every two hours during the night and wants to go out. When he runs around all day, he sleeps like a puppy all evening.
You are the same.
No, you’re not a dog. Well, some of you do act like one at times…
But, you do need much more physical exertion than you’re probably getting. You need deep physical fatigue to make your body want to sleep.
So, what was my answer to the question on Twitter?
A barbell and plates (i.e., weights).
I used to have a hard time falling asleep. Now, regular daily workouts make me sleep like a baby. My sleep has been great for almost 13 years now.
I’m asleep within a couple of minutes after my head hits the pillow. Some days, I can barely stay awake after a particularly hard training session.
If I miss a workout, it messes with my sleep cycle. That happens when I travel. It’s not fun.
If you want to sleep better, work out harder. Much harder.
Do some weight training. Walks and runs are great, but they don’t fatigue me nearly to the same degree as lifting weights.
All of those BS sleep aids may or may not work, but they certainly don’t have the additional benefits that exercise will give you.
Why not do something that helps you sleep AND gets you into excellent physical condition too?