Physical activity increases energy because exercise increases heart rate and blood flow, so you feel awake, which is one of the many benefits of exercising. But Why does exercise make me tired?
But it is also possible to get tired after exercise and is especially common after high-intensity workouts. After all, physical activity requires a lot of energy and endurance.
Is this normal?
In general, there is no need to worry about feeling tired after exercise. It is normal to feel tired after exerting yourself physically. It is more likely after intense workouts. For example, you can expect your energy level to drop after a long run or high-intensity interval training.
On the other hand, an easy workout like a stroll will probably not make you tired. However, everyone is different.
Your post-workout energy depends on many factors, including:
- fitness level
- your level of hydration
- type of exercise
- training duration, intensity, and frequency
- underlying medical conditions
- how much sleep you get the night before
- In some cases, feeling tired after exercise may signify that you have pushed yourself too hard.
Why does it occur?
Sleepiness after exercise is caused by the body’s natural response to physical activity. When you exercise, the muscles contract repeatedly. Muscles use adenosine triphosphate to produce these contractions, which provide energy to your cells.
Your ATP levels decrease as you continue to exercise, which reduces the ability of the muscles to function, resulting in muscle fatigue. It is known as peripheral fatigue.
Your central nervous system also plays a role. During exercise, the CNS emits repeated signals to activate the muscles. However, the firing will be less charged the longer you train.
In addition, exercise increases various neurotransmitters, including dopamine and serotonin. These changes reduce the CNS ‘ability to activate your muscles, leading to central fatigue, and you may feel tired.
Benefits of taking a nap after exercise
The benefits of sleeping after a workout include:
- Muscle recovery. Taking a nap after exercise can support muscle recovery. When you sleep, the pituitary gland releases growth hormones. Your muscles need this hormone to repair and build tissue.
- Improved sleep debt. Lack of sleep prevents muscle recovery, slows down cognitive function, and weakens the immune system, contributing to poor athletic performance. When taking a nap, you can reduce the effects of sleep deprivation by getting more rest.
- Reduced physical fatigue. Feeling tired after exercise is a sign of muscle fatigue. However, as napping encourages muscle recovery, it reduces fatigue, making it easier to handle other obligations for the rest of the day.
- Increased mental alertness. If you wake up early to exercise, rest can help you feel less tired. In the same way, taking a nap after exercise can give you a boost of mental energy.
Disadvantages of taking a nap after exercise
There are also some disadvantages to sleeping after a workout. They include.
- Poor nap quality. Exercise increases endorphins and body temperature. These exercise-induced changes can keep the brain and body awake, which is why some people avoid exercising just before bedtime. Therefore, even if you want to sleep, it can be challenging to get high-quality rest. It may take time to find out if a nap after exercise is proper for you.
- Increased grogginess. You will feel dizzy and disoriented when you wake up. This feeling, known as inertia, can last for up to 30 minutes. If you take a long nap, you can go into the deeper stages of sleep.
- Restless night’s sleep. Although napping can reduce sleep debt, it can adversely affect sleep at night. You may have trouble falling asleep later in the evening. If you have a sleep disorder, napping can worsen your symptoms.
How long should you sleep?
Limit your nap to 20 minutes. Avoid sleeping for 30 to 60 minutes. Set the alarm for 25 to 30 minutes, which will give you some time to relax before a 20-minute nap. Otherwise, you can go into a deep sleep and wake up with inertia.