Geek Smithology

October 19, 2008

7×5=35, or Another Update

Filed under: Grab Bag,Personal by Nathan @ 7:59 pm

It occurred to me that when I am 35 my sons will be 7 and 5, which is the kind of coincidence from which I derive tiny amounts of pleasure.

It also occurred to me that as good as Mr. Howard was as Rhodey in Iron Man, wouldn’t Don Cheadle have been even better? Actually, that didn’t occur to me at all, until my buddies over at The Movie Blog reported that that is exactly what is happening.. Remember kids, nobody’s irreplaceable[1].

So how is the great sleeping experiment going? Not bad, if a bit difficult to adjust to because it can be hard to fall asleep when you know you have to. So the first night was find, the second was really horrible – slept about 4 hours. The night after that was pretty average, and I even managed to wake up at my normal wake-up time on Saturday (5:20 – yeah, my wife says I’m insane too) and make it through the day. Today was crash day, a new concept I came up with while the experiment was beginning. Basically, I believe in the concept of a sleep deficit. While I don’t necessarily believe that you can “catch up” on sleep in any holistic sense, I think that it’s a valid concept day-to-day or even week-to-week, so that’s the day where I sleep as long as my body “thinks” it should. This was about nine hours (as opposed to six, which is “the number”).

Going forward, if I find that crash day is consistently far out of touch with my “number”, I will increase the number by some reasonably meaningful amount without going overboard – likely 20 – 30 minutes. Although it will be the harder way to go, I plan to keep the time I wake up as static as possible and start going to be earlier to “create” this extra time. That said, I don’t want to read too much into crash day the first few weeks, since there is so much difficulty just getting into the rhythm of things that it doesn’t really make a difference.

What I can already tell is that I feel much better waking up at a certain time, even on Saturday, then I do just sleeping in. It’s entirely possible that this is due to that when sleeping in I often wake up in the middle of a sleep cycle, which always makes one feel worse. I’ve managed to avoid naps for the most part, although I always get drowsy on the bus home, regardless of schedule.

Scientifically speaking, given that we often feel the same way (sleepy, hungry, etc.) at certain times every day, it occurs to me that sleeping the same time every day would lead to a more efficient sleep cycle, and there is vast literature proclaiming that to be the proverbial good thing. That number might not be six (I just really hope it isn’t something like 8.5, which would be difficult to achieve – I’d pretty much need to be in bed already!)

Hope everyone had a cool weekend. I know I did – checked out Wall-E again yesterday at the cheap theatres and not only does it stand up, I actually enjoyed it better the second time around. My wife, who didn’t see it last time really liked it, but bemoaned the fact that most people won’t get the message. I argue that they’ll get it, they just won’t care or change anything about there lives as a result. Welcome to Earth, right? And then today we took the boys to a Halloween party at the house of crazy Bill Davis, whose garage-based haunted house is truly a marvel of technology.

[1] That does not mean that some people aren’t harder to replace than others.

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