Anyone who knows diddly about natural health knows daily exercise is a sensible thing to do.
Well, medical science recently confirmed what us health nuts have known forever: older and middle-age people reported sleeping better when they added regular exercise to their days. These aging baby boomers fell asleep about 15 minutes earlier and slept about 45 minutes longer at night.
Since most of us live frenetic lives and are seriously sleep-deprived anyway, doesn't it make sense to use our feet and legs for something other than appendages to move us from car to desk to car to home? Of course it does.
So make a commitment today to exercise at least four times during the next seven days. Begin today by brisk walking, swimming, or biking for at least 20 minutes. This approach beats the tar out of the drug approach. Sadly, though they are only 20% of the population, older Americans receive almost half the medications prescribed by doctors to aid sleep. And these sorry drugs cause confusion, falls, extended drowsiness, and a host of other nasty side effects.
Here are some other exercising tips:
A drop in body temperature aids sound sleep. So time your exercise five to six hours before bedtime.
Make your exercise vigorous enough to make you sweat a little. Previous studies have shown that non-aerobic stretching and concentration exercises alone did not impart sleep.
Stick with it! Participants in this study did not report improved sleep until they had been exercising for 16 weeks.
And people sleep better on a healthy bed too. See the "Healthy Bed Checklist" at