There’s a popular movement, these days, of getting back to nature. We’re encouraged to take a break from our busy, daily routines of hustle and bustle by getting out into natural surroundings. There are many theories as to why this is an important practice, but they’re largely irrelevant if you find that doing so gives you peace of mind.
But, since many of us aren’t in the physical condition we’d like to be, long hikes can be rather challenging. If you’re looking to get out into nature by taking a hike, then it’s important that you prepare for it in the best possible way. We’ll often spend a lot of time making sure we have the right supplies, that we know which route we’ll be taking, and that others know what we’re up to as a safety measure. But few of us consider the importance that getting a good night’s sleep has when it comes to enjoying a long hike through nature.
Why Good Sleep is Important for Hiking
There are two primary reasons why getting a good night’s sleep is so important when preparing to go on a long hike:
- A good night’s sleep will ensure you have the proper energy to complete a physically strenuous hike through the woods or up a mountain.
- A good night’s sleep puts you in the right frame of mind to reap all of the psychological rewards that come from spending time in nature.
Hiking is a relatively easy form of exercise, especially when compared to biking, running, or strength training. But it’s still somewhat strenuous, especially if you aren’t used to long climbs up hills. When you get a night of high quality sleep you awake with seemingly boundless energy to tackle the day. If you’re getting ready for a long hike, you’ll want as much energy as possible. Be sure to get at least eight hours of sleep the night before a scheduled hike, and it will be far less difficult.
Additionally, a good night’s sleep will put you in a better mood. Studies have shown that sleep deprivation can cause you to be irritable, grumpy, and lazy. Many of us fail to realize, though, that sleep deprivation isn’t only caused by not getting enough sleep. It can also be caused by tossing and turning throughout the night.
By getting to bed early the night before a hike, you’ll be far more likely to get the full amount of sleep you need. But if you aren’t sleeping through the entire evening, you may have another problem: a mattress that doesn’t provide the comfort you need.
How Having a Good Mattress Can Help You with Your Hike
Most people have a simple mattress, with traditional coil springs. Some have a pillow top, providing a bit of extra comfort. But even a mattress that is comfortable, at first, can become worn down over time, reducing the quality of your sleep. If you’re waking up throughout the night because you find it difficult to get comfortable, you may want to consider getting a new mattress.
One of the best types of mattresses for those looking to take full advantage of a full night’s sleep is a memory foam mattress. These mattresses are designed to adhere to the shape of your body so that you can sleep more comfortably throughout the entire night. This leads to fewer sore muscles in the neck and back, but has several other benefits as well. You can see some of the best memory foam mattresses at sites like ChooseMattress.com.
For instance, those of us who are able to get a full night of high quality sleep are far less likely to be grumpy throughout the day. This is particularly important if you’re hoping to use your nature walks as a form of relaxation or meditation. If you’re grumpy and irritable, your hike isn’t going to be nearly as pleasant as it could, and you won’t return from your trip in the state of mind you had hoped to accomplish.
Additionally, a memory foam mattress will lead to far fewer aches and pains. If you wake up with a sore neck or back, you’re far less likely to even depart on your hike, and you won’t reap any of the rewards that it could provide. Even if you do head out and up the mountain, it will be a far more strenuous trek, reducing the level of enjoyment you get from it.
It may sound a bit strange to hear that one of the best ways to prepare for a hike is through a good night’s sleep on a memory foam mattress. But, if you find yourself waking up irritable or with aches and pains, then there’s no doubt about it: it’s the best way to get the most from your hikes.