hitting the hay


      • going to bed
        Informally indicating the act of going to sleep

    Examples of hitting the hay

    • After a long day at work, John said, "I think I'll hit the hay early tonight."

      This idiom means that John is going to sleep, probably because he is tired. The phrase "hit the hay" originated in the early 1900s and is a euphemism for going to bed.

    • The children were tired and cranky, so their parents suggested that they hit the hay a little earlier than usual.

      This example shows how the idiom can be used to convey the idea that someone should go to bed, especially if they are tired or grumpy.

    • It's getting late, maybe we should hit the hay soon.

      This example shows how the idiom can be used as a polite way to suggest that someone should go to bed, especially in a social situation where there are other people around.

    • After a wild night out, Sarah remembered to hit the hay, knowing that she had an early morning meeting.

      This example shows how the idiom can be used to convey the idea that someone is being responsible and mindful of their health and well-being by getting enough sleep, even after a late or indulgent night.

    • After a long day, John can't wait to hit the hay.

      This idiom means that John is eager to go to bed and sleep. The origins of the phrase "hit the hay" are unclear, but it likely derives from the use of straw-filled mattresses, as "hay" was a common material used for bedding in the past. Today, "hitting the hay" is often used interchangeably with "going to bed" or "calling it a night."

    • Maria has been studying for exams all week, and now she's ready to hit the hay.

      Here, "hitting the hay" is used to describe Maria's desire to sleep after studying for an extended period. As Maria has been studying for exams, she may be feeling tired and overwhelmed, making "hitting the hay" an appropriate expression to convey her tiredness and desire for rest.

    • After dinner, Tom always hits the hay.

      This example illustrates the regular usage of the idiom. Tom has a consistent routine of going to bed after dinner, making "hitting the hay" a common occurrence in his day-to-day life.

    • "John hit the hay at midnight last night," Sarah said as they hung out.

      In this final example, "hitting the hay" is used as a past tense idiom to describe John's bedtime the previous night. Sarah may have asked John what time he went to bed, and he replied by using the idiom, "hit the hay."


    The idiom "hitting the hay" is a casual and colloquial way to express the action of going to bed. It is often used in a light-hearted or informal context to indicate one's intention to sleep.

    Origin of "hitting the hay"

    The origin of the idiom "hitting the hay" can be traced back to the early 20th century. The term "hay" refers to the straw or grass that is used as bedding for animals, particularly in barns or stables. When farmers or workers would finish their day's work, they would "hit the hay" or lie down on the soft bedding to rest and sleep. Over time, the expression became more widely used to simply mean going to bed, regardless of the type of bedding being used. Today, "hitting the hay" is a common and lighthearted way to refer to the act of going to sleep.