Night owls more likely to be couch potatoes
People who stay up late are more likely to follow a less active lifestyle, according to new research.
Scientists in the Behavioral Sleep Medicine Program at the Feinberg School of Medicine at Northwestern University recruited 123 healthy adults for the study, all of whom reported that they slept at least 6.5 hours a night. Over seven days, the researchers used sleep diaries to measure sleep variation and questionnaires to measure physical activity and attitudes toward exercise.
The study’s findings, published in the journal Sleep, revealed a link between sleep times and physical activity. The researchers found that the study participants who went to bed later and woke up later reported more time sitting and less time exercising, particularly on weekends. The study’s participants who described themselves as “night owls” also perceived more barriers to exercise, including not having enough time and difficulty sticking to an exercise schedule.
The study suggests that adults should be aware of sleep timing when trying to adhere to an exercise plan. And the researchers suggested that health care providers should consider circadian factors when giving exercise advice.