I tried a polyphasic sleep cycle!

I do things like this on my blog for fun to try them out, but I’m not a scientist, doctor, sleep expert, etc. A friend just e-mailed me about the dangers of sleeping like this, and passed along two links that describe the actual science behind sleep:



While this blog post was something for me to try (from my own free choosing), I think it’s important to realize that there may be risks involved with this style of sleeping, too. So, read those links and think hard before you think about trying it. If you’d like to ask more questions about proper, healthy sleep cycles, get in contact with me and I can contact my friend for you.


Polyphasic, silly! I had never heard of this until Em$ read about it when we were hanging out after camp last week. She mentioned a guy named Timothy Ferriss, and I was able to google him and read more about him and his ideas. Check out this website for more info: http://www.4hourlife.com/2012/04/29/become-uberman-sleep-like-da-vinci-the-polyphasic-sleep-cheat-sheet/

Essentially, the idea is to spread out your REM cycles over several periods of the day instead of one long period at night. This means you need less sleep overall, meaning you have more hours in a day to get your stuff done. Here’s a screenshot of the different levels:

Picture 15

The craziest level is the “uberman,” which is just taking 6 20-minute naps throughout the day. This adds up to 2 hours of sleep in a day, meaning you have a whopping 22 hours to do things. In the words of Stepbrothers, “There’s so many options!” Now it makes sense why men who needed to get sh*t done slept like this…Ben Franklin, Leonardo daVinci, etc.

This was the only week that I could really try something like this, as my summer job starts Monday and there’s no real guarantee that I would be able to nap when it starts. I decided to go with the “Everyman 2 Nap” cycle. I slept from 1 am to 5:30 am, and then took two 20-minute naps, one at 11 am and the other at 5 pm.

Going into it, I expected that I’d hate it; not only am I NOT a morning person, but I’m also a long-napper. When I go down, I go down for 3-4 hours. It takes me 20 minutes to wind my brain down at night and 20 minutes (or longer) to wind it up again in the morning. Would I be able to survive this?!!!


Surprisingly, I loved it! I was so exhausted by the time 11 am came around that I PASSED OUT when I laid down, and felt ridiculously refreshed when I woke up 20 minutes later. I must have fallen right into REM sleep instead of dawdling around, waiting for my brain to shut down.

One thing that the website mentioned was to make sure that you have things to do. Since, suddenly, you DO have enough hours to get things done during the day, you might have more free time than you are used to, and might want to sleep because of boredom. So I made a list of different things that I wanted to get done to make sure that I didn’t just sleep my time away.

I’m not sure if this would be possible to work with if you had a typical 9-5 job, or how long one could keep this schedule up (especially if you were doing the uberman!) However, I think that I would use this again in the future if I had a string of days free and I needed to get things done. It was a great way to add more time to my days and not feel completely tired and drained.

Other notable firsts:


* I had never learned how to perform a roll on a snare drum before! Rex was AWESOME and showed me how to do the roll, then grabbed my phone and recorded me trying it. Unfortunately, as per usual with cell phones and this blog, videos are hard to get on here, so there’s no way to show you my awesome roll. Does anyone have a better idea of how to get videos on here?!

* I had never had this type of bracelet made for me before. My senior staff mentee, Anna, made it for me and it’s AWESOME! 🙂


* I had never created a tumblr account before. To fill up all my free hours, I decided to FINALLY transfer over all of my opendiary entries to a tumblr account so that I could see all of my writing in blog(ish) form again. As another aside, I had never read all of my entries, back-to-back before. SO AMAZING to see my writing develop over the course of 12 years. I don’t think that I realized that opendiary offered a way to capture my growth. I’m really proud of some of the stuff that I wrote (I’m such an observer), and it was also amazing to take a trip back in time into my 17-year-old brain. So lucky to have captured all of those thoughts and stories!

* I had never lost a shoelace on my dockers before! I still don’t understand where it went…

* I had never eaten at The Spot in Groton. Good pub food!

* I had never been on a trivia team that won a top prize at the Black Sheep! I think it’s the hardest trivia place at which to play. We won 2nd place. Woo Hoo!!!!

* I had never seen any part of the Harrison Ford movie “Regarding Henry.” It was terrible.

* I had never gone to one of Dante’s family’s BBQs. I’m so full that I won’t eat for a week and my cheeks hurt from smiling and laughing so hard!

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