Sealy Deeper Sleeper challenge five: exercise

A pedometer for tracking exercise next to a Sealy pillow.

My latest Sealy Deeper Sleeper challenge is all about exercise. I was sent a pedometer and asked to attempt 10,000 steps a day to see if keeping active improved my sleep. It seemed to be useful timing as the band on my Fitbit had recently broken and I hadn’t got round to buying a new one!

Before I started the challenge, I was confident that I would get there or thereabouts with the 10,000 steps a day. Despite spending a fair amount of my time at my desk, I’m fairly active. The return of the school run, coupled with Amelie trying to get things she shouldn’t also helped!

Unfortunately, the pedometer wasn’t the most reliable of trackers. I noticed that it didn’t log every single step and the reset button was very sensitive too. As a result, it deleted my progress more than once. Rather than estimate my results, I added up the steps I knew it had logged. I therefore know I got significantly more exercise than it claimed.

As well as the school runs over the last week, I’ve played football with Dylan and Xander twice. I’ve also been to the shops several times, including one massive trek to the nearest out-of-town stores as I don’t drive.

As we’re going to try to move soon, I’ve also done plenty of DIY and gardening, so have had lots of exercise. The stats averaged about 8,500 steps a day which, as I say, doesn’t tell the full story.

But how did this affect my sleep? To be honest, I didn’t notice a significant difference. I think this is simply because this hasn’t represented a change in lifestyle for me. I was already getting a similar amount of exercise on a daily basis.

My sleep patterns have been largely similar too. Now Amelie is in more of a routine, I get longer stretches. She still wakes up at least once a night but, generally, I feel a lot more human than I did a few months ago!

What this all suggests, is that exercise is indeed conducive to good sleep. It turns out that I was unwittingly taking this challenge long before the pedometer arrived. Plus now Amelie is less of a ‘confounding variable’, the sleep and exercise are complementing each other well. So, despite having completed the challenge in a round and about kind of way, I think it was a success!

I’m looking forward to finding out what my next Deeper Sleeper challenge involves.

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