why-swimming-makes-you-sleepy-swimming-tips-on-how-to-deal-with-itStudies have shown that swimming improves sleep quality. That’s great! But what if you’re training early in the morning? You don’t want to be sleepy afterwards, dozing off on your desk… So what are the reasons behind that?

Swimming is a full body workout: Swimming is the only exercise that uses all the muscles of your body. No matter the stroke you’re doing, it will require full body effort and a lot of energy which will exhaust your muscles and make you sleepy. The key is to grab a good breakfast and stretch well before your training.

Workout intensity:  There are some mixed opinions regarding the effect of the workout’s intensity on the energy of the body. While some people feel tired after exercising roughly, others feel more energized the more the workout is intense. After your workout, your body will be in the after-burn state which is when it cools down and returns to resting levels. This is when you usually feel tired and sleepy.

Water is resistant: Water is 12 times more resistant than air, that’s why swimming requires more physical effort than any other dry-land workout, which of course can wear you out.

Sunlight: You might experience more fatigue if you are swimming outdoors, where you’d be in direct contact with sun rays which can have its toll on how tired you’ll be. Try substituting the outdoor pool with an indoor one, but if you absolutely have to swim outdoors, make sure it’s early in the morning or late in the afternoon, when the sun is less intense. And of course, wear sunscreen and drink lots of water.

Water temperature: Even if your swimming workout is tough, your body temperature will still drop. Cold water decreases blood flow in the muscles and makes you lose heat quickly, so the body has to work much harder and waste more energy in order to stay warm.

After your swim, your body will go through a re-heating process, which is also energy consuming, making you even more tired. That’s why you should try swimming in pools where the water temperature is between 77 and 81 degrees Fahrenheit. Make sure the water isn’t too hot though, because hot water can cause fatigue as well.

Also try going for a run, and drinking cold water after your workout; that will definitely give your body a boost!

Calorie consumption: Food = Energy.
If you go swimming with an empty stomach, you’ll drain your body from all its energy, so never do that! Have a meal about 3-4 hours before your session and a small snack 1-2 hours before. Think whole grains, fruits, vegetables, lean proteins and healthy fats. If your training is in the morning have a small breakfast before you head to the pool; if you don’t have time for that, go for fresh juices, fat free milk or yoghurt, and stay away from fibers.

Happy swimming! 🙂

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