This Workout Helps You Fall Asleep Faster

Instead of counting sheep, count reps. Strength can help you fall asleep faster and wake up less often during the night, according to a small new study from Appalachian State University.

Previous research had found that aerobic activity can improve , but this is some of the first evidence that strength training, such as weightlifting or Pilates, can have similar effects.

In the new study, 24 college students did a full-body strength on several different days. The half-hour routine included exercises such as crunches, bicep curls, and leg presses performed at a moderate intensity. At night, the students wore sleep-monitoring headbands.

The results: When students lifted weights at 7 a.m., they fell asleep about 45 minutes faster than when they didn’t work out. Pumping iron at 1 p.m. or 7 p.m. also helped students doze off about 10 to 20 minutes quicker than they would otherwise.