And so the Great Polyphasic Sleep Experiment of 2017 is now over.
After over 60 days of sleep deprivation, extra time to do what I want, lots of breathing, time dilation and general confusion. It seems to be that Polyphasic sleep is not for those who:
- have a horrendous immune system.
- have twin four year olds.
- enjoy not spending the two hours before bed and the two hours after waking spending most of their conscious effort on not falling asleep.
- like to drink coffee.
- often get sick a lot when they're sleep deprived.
- have trouble using their eyes for more than about 18 hours a day.
- have to spend the graveyard hours being extremely quiet because they'll wake their young children.
- have a genetic make up and physical body that doesn't seem to have a vendetta upon themselves.
- enjoy meditation without the heavy burden of constantly asserting effort to stay awake whilst nodding off on their Zafu.
- don't really appreciate people asking if you have taken up day drinking or smoking crystal meth.
My brain and body have some closing remarks on the experiment:
- Body: "WHAT THE FUCK MAN?! Two MONTHS of mostly sleep deprivation and YOU expect me NOT to make you horrendously ill when I finally get the chance?!?!?"
- Brain: "Uhh... What time is it? And where did all these pains come from?" *pre-frontal cortex is expected to return from it's vacation is approximately 12 days*
Now this is all to say that I do actually think that:
Polyphasic sleeping is ACTUALLY A GOOD IDEA!
I very nearly adapted to it the first time around and if I didn't get ill I am pretty sure I would have been successfull. If I heard about it in University and I was feeling healthy, I would DEFINITELY have given it a go. But Unfortunately my immune system had other plans. It seems to have a lot of plans. Maybe I could get it removed.
Simon: "Hi, thanks for seeing me at such short notice...I was wondering if I could please have an immune system transplant?"
Doctor: "..." (speaking into phone) "That's right officer, he's back again. Can we get the big van with the straps as per usual?"
So in conclusion I conclude that unfortunately the continual immune suppression and stress that is inflicted on my particular individual body is unsustainable.
But that being said I'm not closing the door on Polyphasic sleep forever. A Biphasic Siesta style sleep pattern might work for me! But I must regain some slippery grip on health before jumping back into the Olympic sized pool of slumber poverty.
Brain: "Simon.... Listen simon... What have we learned from this?"
Simon: "Oh, it's you brain, I didn't know you were functioning yet?"
Brain: "Simon. Don't change the subject."
Simon: "I think it's time for a nap don't you?"
Brain: "No Simon! Listen! We must learn our lesson!! Simon... NO!"
Simon: ".........zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzZZZZZZZZZ. Donk!"
How do I feel?
Physically: Right now I am recovering from illness, seems to be like some sort of Flu, with body pain, lots of mucus and general lethargy.
We ate a tonne of carbs for our impromptu carb-up day yesterday, which resulted in me feeling rather sorry for myself as I limped around the house with multiple excruciating leg cramps on multiple occasions for multiple minutes throughout the night.
Psychologically: I am feeling a little apprehensive as it feels like I will be losing 4 hours of my life each day, but my beautiful fantastic amazing and glorious wife has created a schedule that should remedy that concern. I also feel like this is a good decision as I will now be able to go back to the gym and lift weights and wear my Dwayne Johnson T-shirt semi-ironically! I couldn't do this before as the lack of sleep made it nearly impossible for me to do any kind of extensive exercise.
Any advice for others thinking of hurling themselves into the ocean of the ultimate anti-pyjama party?
Yes. Give it your best shot!! Always stick to your schedule no matter what! And always keep an objective perspective or someone close to you who is NOT sleep deprived to let you know when you should stop. Sitting on your Zafu staring into the middle distance as you head falls forward for the first two hours of your waking day consistently for 2 weeks is a good sign something isn't quite working out.
Also a good retrospective sign is when you and your wife mutually decide not to continue and about 40 minutes later every ounce of sleep deprivation and immune response that your body had been holding onto comes crashing down on you all at once.
Now I must go.