The idea of hitting the gym after a bad night’s sleep… No thank you. When your alarm starts to ring, what do you do? Whack snooze and skip the workout? Or drag your butt out of bed?
If you ever find yourself struggling to workout – or struggling to drift off at night – this is for you. We’ve done a little digging to see where sleep or exercise is really what you need.
What the stats say
According to the scientific journal Sleep, you’re facing a 12% increase in early death if you regularly get less than six hours of solid sleep.
Meanwhile, the BMJ has revealed a 40% drop in all-cause mortality for those who do 150 minutes of cardio and two strength sessions per week.
How sleep and workouts work together
The thing is, when it comes to hitting the hay and working out, the two very much work together. If you’re currently only getting around 6 ½ hours of ZZZ each night, increasing this closer to 10 hours can enhance your workout performance – including sprint times – according to the American Academy of Sleep Medicine.
Struggling to get to sleep? Regular exercise has shown to improve not only the duration of your sleep, but the quality too. Be sure to finish your gym session at least two hours before heading to bed though, to avoid a spike in endorphins that may make you more awake rather than sleepy.
Light on sleep?
If you’re a little light on sleep, starving your body of rest can lead to overindulgence on late-night carbs, compared to those getting their eight hours of rest.
Also Read: How to lose chest fat fast
Trying to lose weight? Hitting the gym earlier can enhance your weight loss efforts. So instead of sleeping in all day, aim to workout before midday. According to the International Journal Of Obesity, those who get sweaty before 12 lose more weight than those who exercise post 3pm.
According to research, sleep deprivation leads to the UK alone losing around 200,000 working days each year. This means that increasing the amount of rest you get could actually boost the economy by billions.
Struggling to stay awake? A black coffee can keep you running and boost your metabolism. Or why not try a power nap if you’re WFH?
Physical inactivity is pretty damn expensive. Whereas keeping on top of your workouts can cut down medical bills by keeping your body running in tip top shape.
Even losing a simple hour of sleep can take several nights to undo. Feel like you’re struggling to keep up? Creative has been shown to reignite your brain’s energy when you’re flagging.
Also Read: Seven tips to boost your energy levels
Coffee isn’t the only way to keep you going! According to the University of Western Ontario, working out for 20 minutes (at moderate-intensity) can boost cognition similarly to a cup of coffee.
However, it’s not easy to say that one should take total priority. Although, with that in mind, sleep forms the foundation for effective exercise, while working out certainly helps you hit the hay better, too. In short, the two are entwined pretty damn closely.
Let’s face it, dragging your butt to work after a killer sunrise workout will certainly compromise your energy levels – and your immune health. If you’re struggling to hit more than 6 ½ hours, hit that snooze and rest up before hitting the gym.
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