Exercise and Sleeping
If you are fortunate enough to live to be eighty you will have spent between 24 to 30 years of your lifetime asleep. For an activity that takes so much of our time, to be so little understood is a mystery to me. We sleep because we are tired. Tired mentally or physically, but most likely a little bit of both. I have spent a great deal of my life sitting. Sitting behind keyboards. Sitting behind audio consoles. Sitting on my sofa. Sitting in my car. We humans have created a sedentary world. This is a phenomena of the Age of Industry... with a huge kicker from the Information Age. If our relatives from the mid-1800's could see us now! I cannot imagine insomnia being that big of issue in 1850. We worked with our hands. Getting from here to there required energy. Exercise wasn't needed because life was more physical. Ergo, falling asleep came more naturally. But that was then and this is now.
We sleep because the little blue ball we inhabit spins away from our star every so many hours and creates darkness. In the millions of years of life on this planet, it was the darkness that was the great equalizer. The darkness shielded us. We, like most all animals, overused our energy caches during the day to survive. We recharged at night. It's simple math. The biggest single reason for the explosion of insomnia in our modern world is that we are not in balance with our genetic predisposition to sleep cycles. By that I mean we are not getting physically tired. I would advise any insomniac to do some sort of physical exercise every single day. Walking is the easiest way to get right with the nature of sleep. If you have limited use of your legs then work your arms. Get your blood flowing and your heart pumping. Do it religiously.
Of course, you don't need to take my word for it. Just try it. Keep a bedtime journal and track your progress. I think you might be surprised on the improvement to the quality and duration of your slumber after you begin an exercise routine.
Insomnia can be an indication of a serious underlying health condition. Our opinions are in no way intended to be taken as medical advice. If you feel your insomnia issue warrants it please seek the advice of a qualified physician.