T Nation

Sleep experts?


#1

Hey all,
Quick question about sleep cycles, do they get shorter in the summer? I have been going to bed at 9:00 and rising at 3:00 to get my workout in before work. Seems like it was 4 - hour and a half cycles per night. Well now I am waking up at 2:20 and resisting getting up since I have 40 more minutes before I should get up. I then fall back asleep and get up at 3:40 or 6:00 if my alarm clock is not set. Now it looks like 1 hour 20 min. cycles. Any thoughts on this? I am either going to have to go to bed earlier and get cycles in, or train at 2:30!
In faith,
Matt


#2

Yes, sleep cycles can get shorter in the summer. In fact, the Inuit (Eskimos)used to sleep 4 hours in the summer and 14 or so in the winter without suffering sleep deprivation symptoms.

Without knowing your full story the best recommendation I can give you is to make sure your room is completely dark when you go to bed, and spend some time before you go to bed out of intense light. Intense light stimulates your circadian clock (tiny cluster of nerve cells behind eyes) which in turn sends out signals that control natural daily rhythems.

Beyond that, I've reason to believe there will be a couple articles on sleep coming out on T-mag soon, watch for them.


#3

Yes...the sunlight that seeps through your blinds will act as a zeitgeber and reset your biological clock.


#4

Thanks Warhorse! I thought maybe the increase in light may shorten the sleep cycles. I don't want to got to bed earlier, if I don't suffer too iany deprivation, I guess I will train at 2:30! Is that Dangerously Hardcore or what?

Can't wait for the sleep articles...

In faith,
Matt