The Importance of Sleep, Yet Again

Here's an interesting research finding about sleep: if you exercise, chances are that you'll sleep better. If you do an average of at least 150 minutes per week (about 20 minutes per day) of "moderate to vigorous" exercise, you will likely experience an increase in sleep quality, and decrease in sleepiness during the day. Walking briskly counts as moderate exercise, so even rushing from one class to another counts. Bonus!

On the other hand, The Gateway has a silly feature about an editor's attempt at getting more stuff done by dividing the week into six 28-hour days. I think it's telling that the story concludes with the line, "I might try it again sometime...but not until I sleep for a day to catch up." That's pretty conclusive evidence that this kind of lifestyle is not sustainable. If you want to be more productive, maybe you should be thinking in terms of better quality of work, not quantity. More than once, I've been handed a term paper by a bleary-eyed student who mumbled, "I was up all night writing this." You know what? I can tell.

I've posted about the importance of sleep before, and then again. I'm going to be lecturing on it in intro psych, so I't on my brain. Even, like, fantasizing about it. Not dreaming about it, however--that would require actual sleep. I don't want to name names, but someone is still waking me up every night.

There was a blissful period of a few weeks when she decided to sleep through the night, but now she's at the age when she needs more than zero naps, but less than one. (Yeah, try to do the math on that one.) If she takes an afternoon nap, she won't go to sleep until 11:00. But if she doesn't have a nap, it's Miss Crankypants for the rest of the day. Oh, and she'll also fall asleep on the floor in the evening, which means she won't be tired at bedtime. Sigh.

Anyway, in sum: Sleep is good.

Why aren't you studying?

(HT: PsychCentral.)


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