Friday, January 18, 2008

Cheating on sleep?

Read this on and it just seems so tempting to try!

Stay Functional on 2 Hours of Sleep a Night!

The latest issue of Wired magazine describes how people with round-the-clock gigs (like astronauts and sailors) manage to get by on two hours of sleep per day. Studies by the Chronobiology Research Institute recommend getting your Z's in short bursts:
The most time-efficient strategy, dubbed the ├╝berman (what else?), calls for a 20-minute nap every four hours... The first seven days of deprivation will be sheer misery, but stay on track. Once you start dreaming during naps—a sign you've hit REM—you'll begin to feel better.
Yikes! A hardier blogger who didn't love to sleep as much as I do might actually try this out. I love you people, but seven days of misery is too much. (Wired warns that this isn't intended to be a permanent lifestyle change, and long-term effects of this schedule are unknown.) See also our top 10 ways to sleep smarter and better.
Caffeine power napping

Caffeine power napping is one strategy that those burning the midnight oil can try.

1. Right before you crash, down a cup of java. The caffeine has to travel through your gastro-intestinal tract, giving you time to nap before it kicks in.

2. Close your eyes and relax. Even if you only doze, you’ll get what’s known as effective microsleep, or momentary lapses of wakefulness.

3. Limit your nap to 15 minutes. A half hour can lead to sleep inertia, or the spinning down of the brain’s prefrontal cortex, which handles functions like judgment. This gray matter can take 30 minutes to reboot.

Can someone please try this out and let me know? It sure sounds interesting but I have this feeling that the caffeine will end up keeping me awake and not napping to begin with.

Sadly, the ├╝berman strategy isn't recommended as a lifestyle, but only as an option under circumstances when extreme sleep deprivation is inevitable. Guess there's no way out but to just sleep it off then. Nights!