Polyphasic Sleep Hacking

Boost energy and productivity while sleeping less

Tag: REM (page 1 of 2)

Day 94 | Adjustments

Core | 10:30 PM – 2:00 AM

Nap 1 | 6:10 AM – 6:50 AM

Nap 2 | 12:20 PM – 12:40 PM

Nap 3 | 4:00 PM – 4:20 PM

I felt good today. I had a busy and unique day, but I adjusted well and felt good.

Mainly, my third nap was pushed up about an hour due to a meeting I had in the afternoon. Also, this nap took place in my truck with the seat back, window cracked, mask on, classic music playing, and arms folded across my chest. In my last go at Everyman, I slept anywhere and everywhere. I didn’t think it mattered much and was impressed I could get REM anywhere. Now, in my last 10 days or so this is my first nap not in my bed. I sleep way faster, deeper, better in my bed than elsewhere I’ve learned. And that’s important.

BUT, in special circumstances, being able to get even a mediocre 20 minute nap in a car, under desk, train station, etc. is a good skill to master.

I felt good into the evening spending time with friends and answering some inquisitive questions from a couple friends who learned about my strange sleep for the first time.

Day 89 | In the Flow

Core | 10:30 AM – 2:00 AM

Nap 1 | 6:10 AM – 6:50 AM

Nap 2 | 11:40 AM – 12:00 PM

Nap 3 | 4:40 PM – 5:00 PM

Day 5 of my new adaptation. I did a great job today and I felt awesome! This was the best sleep in my naps I’ve had so far – in each nap I fell asleep in what seemed like less than 2-3 minutes and slept all the way through to my alarm, with dreams to remember.

I also hit my ideal schedule perfectly! (You can make your own pretty sleep schedule diagram here)

schedule

The thing I’m most happy about is I did this in spite of a challenging social situation as I had a friend/coworker over at my house working on our startup for the second half of the day. Previously, I would have just worked right on through and skipped my nap as I didn’t want to ‘leave him hanging.’ Today, I went and took a 20 minute nap and left him to work on his own for a bit – no problem at all!

My napping strategy

Napping this adaptation and this period of Everyman has already been WAY more successful. Not just more successful than the adaptation period of my first time at polyphasic, which is to be expected as I’m more accustomed to dropping into REM faster now than I was back then. I’m napping better already over the last 5 days than I did once I was adapted for the latter 4-6 weeks of previous Everyman stint.

The main difference is that now I’m napping as much as I can in my bed, where it’s comfortable and I have a routine of going there and falling asleep. Before, I was napping mainly on the couch because it was WAY easier to get up from a nap on the couch than in my comfy, warm bed. The trade-off however is on the couch I wasn’t getting into REM as fast or staying there as long.

In order to make waking up from my bed easier, I’ve been A) setting two alarms for each nap as learned here and B) sleeping with the lights on bright, shades open, and my dark, comfy sleep mask keeping things blacked out. The alarm is just to make sure I get up. The lights on and sleep mask combo help me get up because when I take off my sleep mask to turn off my alarm it’s daytime/bright in the room which makes getting up about 10x easier than a dark, sleepy room.

Day 85 | My New Sleep Schedule!

Core | 10:30 AM – 2:00 AM

Nap 1 | 6:10 AM – 6:50 AM

Nap 2 | 11:40 AM – 12:00 PM

Nap 3 | 4:50 PM – 5:10 PM

I’m really excited to start my first day of adaptation to Everyman 3 again! I’m being smarter about my adaptation this time too, hopefully so I can give feedback on what works and what doesn’t (at least for me).

Determining my schedule

The four main considerations that went into developing this E3 schedule are:

  1. Roughly evenly spaced awake periods, but with awake time getting longer as the day goes on. My awake periods after core are: 4:10, 4:50, 4:50, 5:20. It’s important to not have more than 6 hours of awake time between sleep on the Everyman schedule. More than 6 hours not only leads to more tiredness, but makes it harder to ‘sleep-off’ that tired with a nap.
  2. Getting my core as close to dusk as I can reliably pull off. Taking my first nap in the early morning when my sleep pressure is high and so I can have a ‘normal’ morning after I wake up.
  3. Being in-sync with my immovable everyday routines. My fiance gets up at 5:40 and leaves at 6:05 every morning for work. So, the idea is to spend a couple minutes with her in the morning and then go right to bed after. She gets home most days at 5:15 PM, so I will have just popped up from a nap when she gets home. A 10:30 bedtime feels natural for both of us these days and is already a part of our routine.
  4. I’ve set each of my naps to be at transition times for my day. Nap 1 comes after Amanda leaves and before I eat breakfast and “start my workday.” Nap 2 comes right before lunchtime. Nap 3 comes at the end of the workday. I noticed that it’s hard for me to be in the middle of something and take a break to nap as my mind is still racing on that task. By making my naps happen more frequently at break points, I’m hoping to have a more quiet, clear mind when my head hits the pillow.

Day 1 in the books

Day 1 went really well. Waking up to my smartwatch alarm was easy and I was excited to jump into my big list of to-do’s. I slept deeply and dreamed in nap 1, I was very close to sleeping (or was maybe in/out of light sleep) in nap 2, and I slept the second half of nap 3. That’s much better than not sleeping at all and certainly not hitting REM in any naps like my first adaptation.

I attribute my greater success in napping on day 1 not only to the fact that my body and mind are more trained to get into REM fast and take advantage of head-on-pillow time, but also… I’m setting myself up for success with my schedule, I don’t have anxiety over sleep or the adaptation this time, and I have better nap practices this time. I’ll share more things I’m doing differently in the next coming days including my napping techniques, but the schedule is a huge part of it.

One thing I can share for certain is that I got way more accomplished on my first day of adaptation than any of my monophasic days over the last couple weeks.

Day 45 | Adapted and Loving It

Core | 11:00 PM – 2:30 AM

Nap 1 | 5:00 AM – 5:40 AM

Nap 2 | 10:00 AM – 10:20 AM

Nap 3 | 3:50 PM – 4:10 PM

I’m officially calling myself adapted to Everyman! I feel great, I have a ton of energy, I get tired right at my nap times like clockwork, I have no signs of sleep deprivation, I dream every nap period, and waking up/staying awake is (most of the time) easy to do now!

It hasn’t been the simplest road for me as I’ve gone through many schedule mishaps, pushed through the holidays, and fought off the flu – but I’m there after 45 days.

Now, I need to clarify that I don’t think that I’m 100% adapted to Everyman yet, but I’m passed the ‘tipping point’ and I predict the final stages will be just a matter of time as my body gets more and more adjusted to this new sleep pattern. I’m making this judgement based on how much easier things have become over the past several days. Puredoxyk in her Ubersleep book states that in her experience it takes people 2-3 months to get fully adapted to Everyman. This falls right in line with how I feel. That I’m most of the way there, but will still be improving over the next month or so.

Since I feel I will have less struggles to write about daily, I am going to be updating this log weekly for the next little while to keep you all updated on how things are going! I also want to dive into creating some resources I wish I had while learning about and adjusting to a polyphasic sleep schedule..  more coming on this soon, but if you have any requests please let me know!

Thanks for following in my journey – I hope my daily logs have helped you.

Day 43 | Napping on the Move

Core | 11:15 PM – 2:45 AM

Nap 1 | 6:00 AM – 6:40 AM

Nap 2 | 10:25 AM – 10:40 AM

Nap 3 | 4:30 PM – 4:40 PM

I had a pretty busy day. My second nap was at home, but was rushed before I had to leave to make a meeting. My third nap was quick. I pulled off on the side of the road and reclined my seat on my way to another meeting.

It was more difficult than normal to fall asleep and to get into REM. I succeeded for a short period of time in Nap 2 and barely if at all in Nap 3. These two bad naps added up to me getting more tired than normal at 9:30 PM. I’ve found that one skipped nap or two poor naps lead to a very tired evening and (even worse) a rough morning the next day.

A napping best practices based on my experience and research is in the works, but in general – try to sleep in the same, relaxing place every nap. And by place, I mean mindset in addition to physical location. However, if life makes this not possible, get as good of a nap as you can and get back to your normal routine ASAP :)

Day 40 | Tons of Energy!

Core | 10:00 PM – 2:00 AM

Nap 1 | 5:00 AM – 5:40 AM

Nap 2 | 10:00 AM – 10:20 AM

Nap 3 | 5:00 PM – 5:20 PM

Sickness basically kicked! I felt WAY healthier today. Only a bit of coughing and snot, but most importantly my head cleared up and my energy level boosted back to non-sick levels.

I’m really optimistic after today. I think I’ve adapted and I think my schedule is quite flexible. We’ll see over the next week of being healthy and sticking to the plan :)

I was extremely productive and creative all day. I felt tired exactly three times: 10 AM, 3:55 PM, 9:45 PM. That’s perfect! My naps went flawlessly and I felt extremely revitalized after each one. In my afternoon nap, I woke up after 8 minutes (mid dream) feeling like I slept for an hour. Then, after getting another 12 minutes of sleep, I really felt good!

 

Day 37 | Healthy(ish) and on Track

Core | 10:30 PM – 2:00 AM

Nap 1 | 5:00 AM – 5:40 AM

Nap 2 | 9:30 AM – 9:50 AM

Nap 3 | 4:50 PM – 5:10 PM

I’m feeling a lot better today after getting tons of rest over the last few days. I’m not totally healthy as I still have running nose, cough, and headache, but my energy level and mental clarity is way better and I can tell I’m on the upswing.

It was extremely easy getting back into my normal schedule since I kept the same core throughout my rest period!

I also am grateful for the early bed times the last few nights and I see how that can make a big impact.

Sleeping to Fight Sickness

First off, in my opinion there are two levels of sickness: 1 where you feel a bug coming on and are fighting it off or have a mild flu, and the other when you feel like you’ve been hit by a freight train. If you have the more mild type one that you are trying to fight off, I highly recommend maintaining the same core length and extending or adding naps as much as necessary to get enough sleep to combat the sickness. This will make it extremely easy to convert back to your schedule when your health is back. However, if you have the more severe type two sickness, throw the entire polyphasic thing out the window and just stay in bed as much as you need (or even as much as you can!). It’s better to be completely out of commission for a couple days than to have a lingering sickness for weeks. Adapting back to your schedule won’t be too bad as you’ve already trained your body to get into REM fast and you’ve proven you have the self-discipline.

 

 

Day 36 | Extra Sleep Beating Sickness

Core | 10:30 PM – 2:00 AM

Nap 1 | 4:30 AM – 8:00 AM

Nap 2 | Skipped

Nap 3 | 4:00 PM – 4:10 PM

I felt pretty sick today. Again, I slept more of a dual morning core sleep schedule than Everyman. My alarm went off at my normal 5:40 AM this morning and there was no chance I was getting out of bed. I felt horrible.

After a long day of sore throat, runny nose, sneezing, coughing, and feeling exhausted I’m starting to feel better! It’s important that I am still staying up in the middle of the night to maintain that part of my Everyman sleep schedule. That will make it so much easier to get back on track post sickness than if I was sleeping monophasic during this recovery. Interestingly, I haven’t been sleeping during my 4 PM nap much at all. I’m not sure if it’s because my face is leaking and I’m coughing or if it’s because I’m getting enough sleep so I’m not tired enough to need to drop into REM.

Day 33 | Getting Extra Sleep

Core | 11:15 PM – 2:25 AM

Nap 1 | 5:20 AM – 5:00 AM

Nap 2 | 9:20 AM – 10:00 AM

Nap 3 | 5:00 PM – 5:20 PM

Today was a good day! I had a fairly good energy level and had a hard training session at 7 AM that I was alert and focused for.

However, I felt some extra sleep deprivation symptoms in the morning – a little groggy and honestly hung over feeling. A bunch of old college buddies met up at a bar and drinks were flowing last night. I was fairly responsible having 3 drinks and getting home by 10:30 PM. It still had it’s effect on me, especially after being out later than normal 2 nights ago too (and drinking some beer).

Playing sleep catch up without falling off the wagon

I did some research into this and the recommendation is one of two things: add an extra nap, or slightly extend one of your nap periods. So, I took a 40 minute second nap and felt extremely revitalized after! When I woke up I wasn’t sure where I was/what time it was/what I was doing/etc.

The sleep deprivation symptoms I was feeling were from a lack of REM sleep. Getting an extra 20 minutes of solid REM in an extended nap makes a world of difference on how your day goes.

Two notes: 1) this is more of an advanced move once you’re getting consistent REM in naps and not something to even consider for the first ~1 week and 2) keeping your core the same time and as close to the same schedule is the most important! Playing with # of naps and nap duration is more flexible.

 

 

Day 30 | Early Wake Up & Solid Naps

Core | 11:15 PM – 2:30 AM

Nap 1 | 5:20 AM – 6:00 AM

Nap 2 | 9:00 AM – 9:20 AM

Nap 3 | 5:00 PM – 5:20 PM

I couldn’t test my new watch alarm (bummer) because I woke up 15 minutes before my alarm feeling awake and refreshed (awesome!). My productivity this morning was through the roof.

Deep Naps Right on Schedule

My naps were also perfectly timed. The first time I looked at the clock thinking: I’m tired. It was 8:50 AM – not bad prep for a 9 AM nap. I got tired after a meeting at about 4:15 PM, but I couldn’t get to nap until 5 as I was on my way back home.

Most importantly, when my alarm went off after an alarm I was refreshed and ready to tackle the remainder of the day! I went to sleep fast, didn’t wake up during naps at all, and had vivid dream recollection for each nap when I woke up. I’m officially in love with my comfy sleep mask.

I’m hitting REM fast and feeling refreshed after!

Sticking somewhat closely to a schedule is incredibly important (during adaptation at least) it seems. I am going to try to do much better at this than I have been and see if I can get to be fully adapted pretty soon.

Not Even Close to Quitting

I told myself (and others) that I was trying this crazy sleep experiment for 30 days to give it a fair shake and see how it goes. Well, today is that day! I can’t say I’m fully adapted, but I can say that I’m enjoying the sleep schedule more often than I hate it. According to PolyDoxyk (the go to resource on polyphasic sleep) it can take up to 2-3 months to fully adapt to Everyman. That means I have another 1-2 months sticking to the schedule potentially before the symptoms of sleep deprivation will completely go away.

I’m on the fence right now of whether I’d stay in Everyman sleep or not if it didn’t get any better. So, I’m excited to see the improvement over the next 1-2 months!

 

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