Exercising is a very important way to develop fitness and most go to the gym while some prefer exercising at home. But some people don't know for sure if taking a nap after an exercise session is a good idea or not. So, let us understand the pros and cons of sleeping immediately after exercising.
It is necessary to know about the types of exercises, before we move to the pros and cons of sleeping immediately after exercising. Exercises come in various forms and people perform the type of exercises according to their needs. While a mix of all types is certainly the best, people often choose as per their requirements and convenience.

The main 3 types of exercises include:

  • Aerobic Exercises. You mainly use your large muscles to use more amounts of oxygen, which increases your heart rate. This aerobic exercise is mainly done for the purpose of increasing the endurance of the cardiovascular muscles. Some examples include brisk walking, rowing, cycling, swimming, hiking, skipping rope, long distance running, playing tennis, training continuously, etc.
  • Anaerobic Exercises. The anaerobic exercises are mainly for resistance and strength training as they strengthen, make firm, and tone up your bones and muscles. They also improve your coordination and balance. Some examples include pull-ups, bicep curls with the help of dumbbells, lunges, push-ups, eccentric training, weight training, interval training, function training, high intensity interval training and sprinting.
  • Flexibility exercises are done to lengthen and stretch your muscles so that they are kept supple. These help you improve the flexibility of the joints and also to make your muscles to be fit all the time.

The Pros and Cons of Sleeping Immediately After Exercising

So, we've learnt the different types of exercises available for one to maintain their fitness and all of these are very useful for anybody. But some people experience few problems with exercising, maybe, due to severity of training on the very first day or because of irregular training or there may be some discomfort too. Hence, there is great confusion about whether you should sleep after exercising or not. Whether that affects your health or proves beneficial? So here are the pros and cons of sleeping immediately after exercising.

In many cases, your needs and activities to do immediately after exercising may be different. For example, if you feel extremely tired after your aerobic exercises, you may want to take rest for a while. Similarly, for people with joint pain, may feel exhausted after strength training and flexibility exercises and may need to relax for a while. On the other hand, some healthy people may find themselves energetic after their morning swim and may be fresh to go for their work. For particular needs it is best to seek medical opinion and plan a proper exercise routine, with the necessary activities to be done after exercising.

Many people are having a doubt, if sleeping immediately after doing an exercise or workout, is harmful or is it good for their health. Answering this question is not an easy job because sometimes, taking a nap after a particular or after certain exercises, is deemed to be a not so good idea, while sleeping after certain other exercises, is deemed to be good for the health. There are also many other factors that have to be noted like the time of sleeping and the gap between the exercise and the nap and also the very type of exercise. If you consider individual needs and the type and intensity of exercising, you can plan your routine well, with the help of an expert.

The Pros of Sleeping Immediately After Exercising

Let us first deal with some of the pros of sleeping immediately after exercising. Many researches have been working on this subject and have come up with various theories. According to some studies, sleeping after an exercise is good however, it may not be a very good idea to sleep immediately after exercising. As sleep gives enough time for the muscle to heal and your body can repair itself. A short nap or relaxation for some time may be beneficial.

This is more effective in case of heavy and intense exercises or when they are done by people who are in their recovery phase. There are certain times or certain types of exercises after which sleeping immediately is a good idea. These exercises include the ones that you do to increase your muscle mass or to enhance your muscle tone like weightlifting, push-ups, pull-ups, bicep curls, abdomen exercises and so on. After doing these, you tend to get a little bust of insomnia before you slip into a sound sleep.

The Cons of Sleeping Immediately After Exercising

Here are some cons of sleeping immediately after exercising. Actually, it is not that good to sleep immediately after a workout, especially if you focusing on burning calories and losing weight. Also, sometimes this indicates that you've worked too little or too much and this doesn't actually help burn your calories at all. Some exercises, especially the aerobic ones, pump your heart rate, increase blood circulation and cortisol levels. With such exercises it is natural to feel fresh and energetic, instead of feeling sleepy and lethargic.

It is not good to sleep after performing cardio, as the body functioning suddenly changes. It can not only affect your sleep later on but also affect your work performance. Such exercises are better not performed after late evenings as the cortisol boost surely interferes with your night's sleep. It does not allow you to sleep well or relax completely leaving you with the increased risk of many health problems.

It is possible that some people who are overweight may feel the need to sleep immediately after exercising. If you feel sleepy after intense cardio, it could also mean that you have overdone, feeling weak or that you are running low on blood sugar levels. It is best to seek medical opinion in such cases.

The pros and cons of sleeping immediately after exercising have their own place. But the way they affect you depends on the type of exercise you do, the intensity and frequency in addition to your age and health status.

Written, Edited or Reviewed By:

, MD, FFARCSI

Last Modified On: August 16, 2017

Pain Assist Inc.

Pramod Kerkar
  Note: Information provided is not a substitute for physician, hospital or any form of medical care. Examination and Investigation is necessary for correct diagnosis.

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