Power of the 90 Minute Nap

The other day I came across this post on 43 Folders, which started me thinking about the possibilities of biphasic sleeping. For some time now I've comtemplated moving to a polyphasic sleeping pattern (several small doses of sleep rather than a single nightly slumber); initially prompted by the self-tests of Steve Pavlina. For the moment though, I'm indulging myself with the usual nightly rest (plus a brief nap during the last 10 minutes of any good late-night film).
Biphasic sleeping (getting your sleep in two chunks) seems like a reasonable compromise. This is usually based around the theory of the 90 minute sleep cycle, and the most likely option seems to be along the lines of Glen Rhodes' current behaviour. As he states in the article:
Typically, I sleep 3 hours a night, and nap for 90 minutes in the evening. That's a total of 4.5 hours, and I am always alert, always awake and always feel rested and refreshed.

There are a couple of benefits to this, the most obvious one being the time saving. Unless you're one of the few people who routinely gets less than 4.5 hours per night (and functions well on that), you'll suddenly find yourself with a bit more free time. Perfect.

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This looks superb. Mike Gillette's 'Rings of Power' explains the various ways to use - progressively - this incredible tool. With clear emphases on both strength and rehabilitation, it's an ideal starting point for many. Particularly the 'over 40' (of which I'm a proud member) crowd. For a glimpse into the world of 'Rings of Power', a brief quote from the review page :
If you care about getting strong, staying strong, and remaining injury free, Rings of Power is essential reading. I incorporated rings into my own training program a couple of years ago and am glad I did. At 45 years old, I am able to continue my strength pursuits unhindered by the joint and tendon injuries that plague many in the over-40 athletic community. - Dr Chris Hardy
Mike Gillette's 'Rings of Power'. Perfect.
NB : To see the other training-related books we recommend, swing by the 'Recommended Reading' page. And for a complete list, head on over to Goodreads.

The secondary benefit - which goes on the heap of 'requires a few more years of research' is the fact that your body resets things such as sodium/potassium ratios whilst in the Theta state (the edge of the 'subconscious' part of sleep). It seems as though the timing of this additional nap - as well as the timing of workouts - could prove to be one more factor in working toward optimal strength.

Scott Andrew Bird

Scott Andrew Bird is a writer, photographer and a guy who just loves this stuff. He's been at home in front of a computer for more years than he cares to remember (OK, 32) and is now making amends for years of many mistakes noted in the De-constructing computer guy articles (part 2) on T-Nation.

Stalkers may wish to track his every move via Twitter, Google+ or Facebook; everyone else is cordially invited to hop over to his online home. Enjoy.

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Napping in the Afternoon

Those who dream by day are cognizant of many things which escape those who dream only by night.

- Edgar Allen Poe

Resources for Twitterchat 106 - Recovery : Improving Monophasic and Biphasic Sleep Resources for the twitterchat (weekly discussion on twitter) on both monophasic and biphasic sleep.
Biphasic Sleep : 30 Day Summary

The transition to this superb method of sleeping.

Of course, if you enjoyed these, I'd highly recommend grabbing the Strength & Fitness Newsletter. Delivered weekly, and absolutely free.

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