One type of Polyphasic Sleep, the first that I ever tried. For another, SEE ALSO: Everyman Sleep Schedule.

NOTE, June 2006: I first experimented with the Uberman schedule back in 1998-99. Since I wrote this node I have never stopped getting comments and email about it, and the number of blogs and articles where people have tried it--and more than often failed, and sometimes accused me of being full of doo--have kept increasing. So I've finally decided to try it again, keep better records and hopefully answer some of the prevalent questions. The details are at the Official Uberman Sleep Blog, located at (UPDATE: The site has been moved to And thank you to everyone who's shown such interest in this.

Sadly, I didn't get around to trying this schedule until my Sophomore year of college. I tell you, I'd give damn near anything to go back to it, but very, very few jobs will accomodate this schedule. For the record, because people always ask, yes, this is supposedly the way that Leonardo Da Vinci and Thomas Jefferson and a fluctuating list of other legends often slept. I'll walk you through it.

The Hours. You'll be sleeping for twenty minutes at a time, every four hours, round the clock. When I did it, I took a nap at 8, 4, 12, then 4, 8, and 12 again. This totals a mere two hours of sleep in a twenty-four hour period. As a forewarning, yes, it sucks ass to get used to, but after about two weeks you'll never wanna give it up.

Special General Tips.

You can probably guess this tip, but here it is anyway--DO NOT, under ANY conceivable circumstances, OVERSLEEP. Oversleeping on this schedule in the beginning (you won't oversleep after the beginning, even if you try) is devastating; you'll be exhausted for at least a day. So. Make DAMN SURE to wake up after 20 minutes, and don't skip any naps. Skipping a nap, no matter how long you've been doing this schedule for, will make you tired until you get the next two naps in normally.

Week One Tips.

During the first week, you WILL be tired, but actually I found that kind of fun. Day one and two, you just feel like you haven't slept, and those naps aren't doing you any good because you just toss around for twenty minutes, or, usually on day two, you drop off and then want to kill yourself when the alarm goes off 20 minutes later. Stick with it. Days 3-5, if you like to meditate, now's the time. For one thing, with twenty-two waking hours per day, you're gonna run out of things to do by this time. For another thing, you'll be high as fuck by the end of the first week, as your body adjusts and your mind starts to get this really weird clear-dreaming feeling. If you've ever played with sleep deprivation, you know what high I'm talking about. And no, you won't die on this schedule like you would if you just stopped sleeping or something; in fact, I was really getting the hang of it by day ten. By day twelve, I felt like a million bucks, and continued to feel that way for six more months.

How it Works and Why It Might Work For You.

Okay, over the course of a normal 8-hour sleep, your body gets an accumulated 1.5 hours or so of REM sleep (deep, dreaming sleep). REM sleep is absolutely vital to your mind and body's condition and you will die without it; the other stages of sleep do little more than provide time for the body to rest and grow and heal. On that note, I would not suggest this schedule under any circumstances to someone under 18 or anyone sick with anything--you all need as much sleep as you can get. That said: On this schedule, what you're doing for the first few days that makes you so wasted is depriving your body and brain of REM sleep completely. You don't stay asleep long enough to get there. The brain really, REALLY doesn't like this, but it doesn't take too long before it figures out that you're sleeping regularly, just not for long. So after about 3-5 days (which is as much sleep dep as a normal person can handle), the brain begins its workaround. It starts jumping right into REM sleep as soon as you close your eyes for one of those naps--and you'll know the first time this happens, too; you'll wake up feeling really, really rested. Now, after a few more days your brain gets the hang of the schedule....and now, where most people are getting one-and-a-half hours of REM sleep in 8 hours of sleep, you're getting two full hours of REM. And by week two, you'll notice it, too: here are some of the benefits I noticed, while I was doing it:

  • If you have sleep disorders like nightmares, night terrors, mid-sleep choking fits, thrashing, muscle soreness or sleepwalking, this will probably flat-out cure you. I had many of the above, and they all disappeared on me virtually overnight. 20 minutes just isn't enough time to build up for those things.
  • If you're tight for time, like I was, it's a godsend. Everbody wondered how I had so much time to screw around in college--they didn't know that I did all my studying at Denny's between my 4a.m. and 8a.m. naps.
  • Yes, you'll still dream, and actually my personal occurence of vivid or lucid dreams went way up when I was on this schedule. But most of the time, especially in the beginning, you won't remember; just sleeping and waking up.
  • As far as being tired all the time, NO. No NO no no. I was much less tired after two or three weeks of this than I have ever been, before or since. For one thing, you're going to bed every four hours, so every time you turn around it's time to go to sleep. And after about three weeks to a month, you won't need an alarm clock anymore either--I used to fall asleep at Noon right in the middle of the quad at school, and my eyes would pop right open exactly 20 minutes later.

Okay, even I have to pretend to be adult once in a while, so here it is: I do not know anything--and I doubt many others do either--about the wisdom or effects of living on this schedule for a super-extended period of time, like years. Like I said, I did it for six blissful months without a problem, and about seven friends ended up doing it with me by the middle. (*heh* We used to crash all at once in the Library. People called us the 'Sleeping Herd'.) The books say that Da Vinci and Jefferson did it all their lives, (although Jefferson did it for several weeks at a time, after which he took one day off and slept a full 24 hours). There's speculation, but no hard fact that I've found, regarding Benjamin Franklin and Henry Ford doing so. You may not have as easy a time with this or fall in love with it like I did--keep in mind I'm a night-worshipper and have screwed around extensively with sleep-dep and other sick experiments. There. If that didn't dissuade you, you're ready.

January 28, 2006

PureDoxyk has written a follow-up to her original node, above. With her approval, I am posting it here for continued reference:

Polyphasic / Uberman Sleep Schedule - Five Years Later

I did The Schedule for about six months. The exact schedule we used was devised by me and nora_knickers, as a good blend of what the famous people we could read about had done, and something that might actually work. We thought about revising it, but never really did -- it worked just fine the way it was. That schedule, of course, was the infamous 20-minute naps every four hours, around the clock. This totals 2 hours of sleep in every 24-hour period. (I won't go into the medical reasons that this works, here; I wrote about it in the other article.) I have since read of *many* variations on this, but none of them seemed to have any advantage over the "official" Uberman, so I mostly ignore them. Oh, with one exception -- some of the famous polyphasic sleepers would take a "day off" every six weeks to six months, and sleep for twelve or more hours. I didn't get a chance to try that, and when I quit the schedule, I didn't feel the need to sleep a lot; I just went back to sleeping at night. It did sound like a plausibly good idea, though; and I can see a medical rationale for allowing your body to catch up on the "early stage" sleep phases that you end up missing out on with this schedule, which involves trimming your sleep down to only stage IV (REM)-phase sleep, which is the regenerative phase that the mind/body needs (and which so many people with sleep disorders, like I had, miss out on.) There is no known reason why you *need* the earlier stages of sleep, but I'm willing to assume that if you get them in nature, there's probably a reason for them. It certainly didn't hurt me to go without them for a few months, though.

Because most people ask, why I quit was simply the advent of a full-time job that wouldn't let me take naps every four hours. Actually, I quit when I left school, shortly before I started the job, both because I knew the job would screw me and because major life-changes in general will tend to knock you off something like the USS, unless you're INSANELY anal and can keep up your naps dead on schedule in the face of everything. Once you miss one nap, you're going to be tired for a whole day. If you miss two, you're in trouble. It is not a low-maintenance thing to do; it requires lots of attention and effort (but less as time goes on; it does get a lot easier after you're acclimated to it--which usually takes several months, at least). One thing I must add, and which nobody tends to believe, is that I'm MUCH more tired during the day when I sleep all night (as well as I'm able; I've never been a great sleeper) than when I was on the USS.

As for side-effects, no, I didn't have any, in terms of negative medical things. Like I said, I didn't even feel overly sleepy when I stopped doing it. My appetite increased measurably, but shit, I was up and moving for 22 hours a day! I also had to be careful of caffeine, because it was never more than 4 hours from when I had to be ready to sleep, and when you're only sleeping for 20 minutes, you can't be tossing around for 10 of them because you just drank coffee.

Here, for your browsing pleasure, are the Pros and Cons of the Uberman Sleep Schedule:


  • 22 hours a day to get things done in! We felt like superman. Time-and-a-half college...homework done. Extracurricular activities? No problem. Part-time jobs? Easy. And we STILL went to nearly every party. My dorm room was spotless, I got lots done on my writing, and studying was a cinch when you could do it at Denny's between 4 and 8 a.m. ;)
  • Lots of energy. I really was never tired; or rather, by the time I got tired, it was time for a nap. Overall, I was less tired on this schedule than I can ever remember being on any other, and the Uberman is not the only whacko thing I've tried, heh. (It is the only one I'd do again.)
  • Occasional heightened perception at the beginning, and every once in a while throughout (might have just been the sleep-dep, and then the excitement).
  • Easy to diet (in fact, hard not to lose too much weight...I lost 10 pounds right off the bat, and had to make myself remember to eat at least 4 meals in every 24 hour period after that, to keep my weight steady. I was relatively physically active during this period, but not actually involved in sports or anything.)
  • Able to be up at night without missing out on daytime (probably the single biggest reason I did it...I'm a night-owl perpetually stuck on a day schedule!)
  • And a big one: Evaporation of sleep disorders. At the time I started this schedule, I was sleep-walking, talking, had rampant recurring insomnia, nightmares, night terrors (try punching a cinderblock wall in your sleep...mmmm) and lord knows what else. All of them went away within the first week. And, oddly enough, they never really came back...I've had small bouts of one or another since then, but nothing like the hell that sleeping had been for me for a couple years before I tried this.
  • Sort of like the last one, but more of a common man's problem: You won't get sore from sleeping. If you have neck, back or ligament problems, you know what it's like to wake up in agony...but you won't, when you've only been asleep for 20 minutes! Having neck problems myself, I really appreciated that.
  • Really easy to do, once you get used to it. After about 2 months, N. and I didn't need alarm clocks; we'd look up about five minutes before naptime, realizing we were tired; we could crash out anywhere and wake up automatically at the right time. No tossing and turning, no thinking too much, and oddly enough, almost no dreaming. Just *wham* - lights out - and *ping* - lights on. I woke up totally refreshed after every nap, once I got used to the schedule.


  • Boredom. I don't bore easily, having nearly endless reading, Internet, art, and organization fetishes; but if you do, you'll hate this. One of the crew trying it with me had that problem, and it looked like it really sucked. There ISN'T enough television to fill 22 hours a day. There's a reason this was a schedule preferred by mad genius types who did enough work to fill two lifetimes! (Side-note: When starting the schedule, for the first week or two, have a HUGE list of things to do ready. You'll be so tired you can barely think, so things like cleaning / organizing, walking, going to social events and outdoors, and art projects are all good. I had a list of over 100 items to get done, and I got them all done in six days! ...But I'd probably have been screwed without that list, because without things to do, it's nearly impossible to fight that kind of tiredness.)
  • Really hard to get used to. Takes a week or two to get even slightly comfortable with, and during that week or two you feel like a bus is perpetually running you over. Having to drive or work during that time would be HELLISH -- but I did it while going to school and didn't die; it just sucked. ;)
  • Hard to maintain. Requires absolute attention to nap-times; missing naps and/or oversleeping, even once, will seriously screw with you. Out of the fifteen or so people who ended up trying this, about 12 of them dropped out within the first month of starting, because they gave in to oversleeping or missed a nap or two and couldn't catch back up.
  • Difficult to adjust around things like job-changes, illness, travel, etc. Not as difficult as you'd think, maybe, since you have to remember that you (well, I, at least) could sleep *anywhere*, and sleeping only takes 20 minutes, so it isn't that hard to get someone to watch your shit in the airport while you snozz in a chair. But a significant disruption might throw you off, and once it does, you'll be tired for a few *days* while you get back on track. Another thing to mention is that the *times* are very important; you can't just decide to take one nap ten minutes late and the next ten minutes late too, to keep up the four-hour ratio. We found this out the hard way: Once you settle on times to sleep, you'd better stick right on them. If you take one nap late, take the next one *on time*, and get back on track asap.
  • And a weird one: It gets hard to keep track of what day it is. We ended up having to invent names for night-times, and have fourteen-day weeks. Because when you're up and moving at 3 a.m. every day, and then still up and moving at 3 p.m., when does Monday end and Tuesday start? Trying to divide it up over one naptime, or at midnight, just didn't work for me. We don't realize, I think, how much sleeping in a long chunk pushes the "Reset: New Day" button for us. You lose that with this, and it can get confusing. Naming the nights working great for me, though. If you don't like being on the same page as the rest of the herd...well, this isn't for you; but I'd think that would be obvious!
  • And finally, I get asked a lot, Would I do it again? And the answer is absolutely. In fact, I think about it a lot--and have for the last five years--and I was even dumb enough to try it again, after I had my baby (yeah, that was smart...because an infant is *always* going to let you sleep for 20 minutes!). I realize now that it'll be a while before my life will accomodate this schedule again, but as soon as it will, I'm all over it! I promise I'll keep a full-on log of my re-adjustment and progress and whatnot when I do. I expect it to be somewhat harder to adjust to at 35 or 40 than it was at 20, but I'm not the type to really give a fuck. ;)

References: PureDoxyk's LiveJournal entry (quoted above):
PureDoxyk's homepage (provided here as a contact point for further information): Uberman's sleep schedule (references this article, provides first-hand experience and several links):
Ask Slashdot: Are Alternative Sleeping Patterns Effective?:
A 90-day polyphasic sleep schedule journal:

I was a philosophy major at the time (still am, actually), and the friend I did this with had just finished forcing me to read a bunch of Nietzsche. So we called it the Uberman's Sleep Schedule as a hat-tip.

My attempt at Uberman's Sleep Schedule

So you've just read the above writeup, and thought to yourself, "Interesting idea, I'd like to try it - but what will my life be like as I try to adjust to this strangely fascinating sleep schedule?" Well, from January 23 to January 30, 2002, I made an effort to live on Uberman's sleep schedule. I also daylogged my progress, in order to leave some documentation of how it went. The following are the daylogs, unchanged from when I posted them. In them, I give a short synopsis of the day's activities as they relate to the schedule (the kitty-saving anecdote being the only deviation, which you'd be wise to just skip over), and a short inventory of what I considered to be the most important facets of my personal well-being.

While reading these, please keep in mind that everyone deals with lack of sleep differently, and my experience may vary widely from others who have gone on this sleep schedule. Some quick math will tell you that I was on the schedule only 7 days, so it was obviously a bit tough on me. Still, the idea is a good one, and I believe that many folks, perhaps hardier than I, could easily put this schedule to good use in their daily lives. Given a less hectic schedule I'd be on it right now, but at as always, YMMV.

New Sleep Schedule: Day 0

I have decided today to implement Uberman's Sleep Schedule in my daily life. Since I live on so little sleep already, suffering exhaustion from waking up in the middle of a sleep cycle, I figure I have little to nothing to lose by trying this out. I plan to daylog my progress, to create a record of my experience, and provide an informal case study for those who may decide to try the sleep schedule.

Time table: I will attempt to sleep for 20 minutes once every four hours, starting at 1 A.M. I will continue for a minimum of three weeks, and see where I am after that.

Safeguards: I have informed my roommates of my decision. They have agreed to stop me if I get delusional.

Schedule: I will be able to go to all of my classes and still take the required naps. I will have to nap before work at 5, but as I live close to work and can sleep in my work clothes (hell, the manager does), I shouldn't have to throw the nap schedule off too far. I will eat once a cycle, dividing meals up into smaller portions, ensuring that I get the nutrition I need. I will design each meal to contain high amounts of energy supplying food.

Supplements: I have begun taking a twice a day vitamin supplement, not specifically to aid this little experiment. I may begin administering small doses of an ephedrine supplement containing caffeine and aspirin later in the week, if I become too exhausted.

New Sleep Schedule: Day 1

For those interested, I changed my first node on this subject to "New Sleep Schedule: Day 0" to reflect the fact that I hadn't actually started yet.

The first day of the schedule has been a bit frustrating, in that instead of napping for 20 minutes at 5 A.M., I managed to sleep until 9. I anticipated such stumbling blocks; I should have myself trained away from such long sleep periods in a few days.

Perhaps one factor in my sleeping so heartily is that I went out for a spot of drinking last night, and got a wee bit drunk. Yeah, that probably did it. I also missed my 1 A.M. nap by over an hour. On the upside, I garnered the attention of a very attractive woman based solely on my wit and personality - a first for me. But hey, that's neither here nor there. I will have to find an appropriate way to deal with extended periods of being out with friends.

Daily Summary
  • Health: Good. Or rather, unchanged. I hope to use this new schedule as a catalyst for personal health improvement.
  • Energy Levels: Good. Quite tired before requiring a nap, quite refreshed afterwards.
  • Daily Functioning: Good. My senses and motor skills have not been impaired in any way.
  • Academic Performance: Surprisingly good. I didn't nod off in a single one of my classes - quite a feat considering that one of them is boring as hell, and the prof teaches from straight out of the book.
  • Social Performance: Good. My interaction with others has not been affected at all.

New Sleep Schedule: Day 2

So far, so good. I'm happy to report that all remains well with the sleep schedule. Every now and then I get drowsy, but I bounce back quickly after a nap. I was quite pleasantly surprised when, after maybe 5 minutes of REM sleep during a nap, I woke up as refreshed as if I had spent a whole day doing nothing but resting. I missed my 9:30 nap (I was doing important things), and I was doing okay, but I get the feeling that tonight will be another 5-9 sleep fest.

Daily Summary
  • Health: Good. I haven't been eating as well as I ought, but that will most likely take care of itself.
  • Energy Levels: Good. As before, I feel drowsy before a nap, and rested after.
  • Daily Functioning: Good. No changes.
  • Academic Performance: Good. As before, I haven't yet nodded off.
  • Social Performance: Good, though some folks say I was acting a bit out of it earlier today.

New Sleep Schedule: Day 3

Today was rather less than good. Once again, I slept from five to nine, and woke up groggy. My mid day nap yielded no REM sleep. I damn near fell asleep in class. I missed two naps, the result of which left me close to fainting. I have been forgetting to eat. I must stop bitching.

I sort of saw this coming, hitting a sleep wall and such, but was hoping that it wouldn't kick in until the weekend. I should have had some sort of contingency plan in place; of course, that contingency probably would have been sleeping. The big problem with this sleep system is that it makes doing anything greater than four hours in length very difficult - RPGs, concerts, going out in general... Not to mention that any artificially altered states of consciousness severely impact one's ability to go to sleep once every four hours for a mere 20 minutes. I like going out with my friends for a few beers, or many beers and perhaps even a few shots. I'm young. It's fun. However, being even a little inebriated makes it hard to wake up, and I can tell you from experience that not sleeping makes it much tougher to get that alcohol out of your system.

So the question is, how do I keep doing the things I want to do while not losing touch with reality? My current thought is that I'll try to sleep for an hour or two before doing anything long and involved, and making time to sleep afterwards as well.

Daily Summary
  • Health: Satisfactory. I felt queasy for a while before sleeping at 5 P.M., perhaps due mostly to the lack of eating
  • Energy Levels: Low. Low, low, low. I really needed more sleep today. I should have eaten better as well.
  • Daily Functioning: Satisfactory. Everything got done that needed to get done, and was done competently. I did not, however, have time to do much more than the bare minimum.
  • Academic Performance: Satisfactory. I didn't get any homework done, and almost fell asleep in one class. This is directly related to the low energy.
  • Social Performance: Sub par. I almost fell asleep while running a D&D game, and worried a couple friends with how slow I'd been all day in general.

New Sleep Schedule: Day 4

After yesterday's sleep deprivation debacle, I went out dancing with some friends, and slept the whole night. It felt really good; I guess I'm still a slave to sleep. More people in my life have been expressing concern over the new schedule, and I tell them that it's going well, and that I'm not hurting myself, and so on. I must admit, I'm glad today is Saturday, and I can just be lazy - only one week of school, and I'm already stressing out. I'd like to think that the sleep schedule isn't responsible, but I don't know.

I have been thinking about a couple of different methods by which I could spend more than four hours doing any one thing, and suffer from the missed nap. One, I can sleep for an hour instead of twenty minutes. A friend of mine claimed that this will just make me more tired, as I will be waking up in the middle of a sleep cycle; I guess we'll see. Two, I can actually get a full night of sleep every other night. This might dramatically offset the sleep schedule to the point of no return. Third, I can try to plow through whatever I'm doing, keeping myself up with mild, legal stimulants, and then crash afterwards. Again, this might offset the schedule. Fourth, I can sleep for four hours every night, going down around 3 A.M., and waking whenever I wake, no later than 9 A.M. I think that this might be the best solution, although I wouldn't really be trying out Uberman's Sleep Schedule as much as I'd just be sleeping less.

Daily Summary
  • Health: Good. Mild hangover, alleviated by judicious amounts of juice and asprin.
  • Energy Levels: Low, but then again, I didn't do much of anything all day.
  • Daily Functioning: Good. Motor skills improved significantly from yesterday
  • Academic Performance: Satisfactory. Got some studying done, less than I should have.
  • Social Performance: Much improved. I was on the ball and coherent all day.

New Sleep Schedule: Days 5&6

I lump days 5 and 6 together because I have actually managed to stick to the schedule for a full two days. This is rather exciting; I am actually a fully functional human being, even after having spent only 4 of the last 48 hours sleeping. I am slowly getting run down, and with school still kicking my butt pretty hardcore, I have decided to opt for the four hours of sleep a night sleep substitute I presented in the Day 4 node.

I spoke with ClockworkGrue earlier today about the schedule, and after reading Day 3, pointed out that I had started this schedule to have more time to do the things that I enjoy; things that I enjoy interfere with my sleep schedule; I may have to cut back on things that I enjoy to maintain my sleep schedule. That made me think for a while. If the augmented sleep schedule doesn't work for me, I may drop this all together. It's not worth it to me.

Bit of a tangent: On the night of Day 5, I had to go to Wal-Mart for some random stuff (where else can you shop at 4 in the morning?), when I spied a stray cat that bore an uncanny resemblence to the picture in a number of "Lost Our Cat!" posters. I got out of my car, and the cat came up to me - it was obviously domesticated. I eventually got it in my car, where it rode rather calmly with me to the Wal-Mart, where I got what I needed plus some cat food. I called the number on the poster at 4:30 A.M., which I probably shouldn't have, and left a logical message. I had to leave to do a radio show with one of my roommates, so I put the cat in a mudroom where it would do no damage, not to mention not make my roommates' alergies flare up, and left. We discussed the merits of my cat-saving on the air. Cat Saving Good: 3, Cat Saving Bad: 0. I got a call from the folks from the poster, and they informed me that they found their cat. When we got back to the house, the cat had escaped. I didn't really save anything, but at least it got some food and a nice place to stay for the night.

Daily Summary
  • Health: Good. The cat saving left some scratches on my arm, but they're not so bad.
  • Energy Levels: Pretty good. I took a nap during the radio show when some other people came in to do the news, and was reportedly rather hard to wake. It felt good, though.
  • Daily Functioning: Very good. I was on the ball during the radio show, managed to stop myself from slipping down some stairs, and played a good game of MtG.
  • Academic Performance: I fell asleep a couple of times in physics; the room is warm, with very comfortable seats. I apologized to the professor afterwards; I'd find it rude if someone was sleeping in my class.
  • Social Performance: No problems at all. A friend of mine rather annoyingly commented that I was "grumpy," based on the fact that I was a might irate towards a woman who would not let me merge on the highway, but I'm pretty sure it was just him.

New Sleep Schedule: Day 7

So here it is, a full week of the schedule down. I reverted to the four hours of sleeping last night, and I think it's doing me well. I haven't really felt too many adverse effects today, though my naps haven't yielded much sleep. It's refreshing to just stop whatever you're doing for a bit every day. In retrospect, I will call this last week a learning experience, but also a failure of the sleep schedule: I have only had one night where I followed the schedule. I will have to try a might harder next week.

Daily Summary
  • Health: Good. The cat scratches are healing well with only four hours of sleep a night. The human body is damn impressive.
  • Energy Levels: Okay. It was really hard to get going this morning; I hope this is not a permanent feature of my life.
  • Daily Functioning: Good. I forgot to go to fencing, but then again, I forgot all last semester, too.
  • Academic Performance: I have been almost completely unable to focus on my homework. I doubt that this is just a side effect of less sleeping, and most likely related to the fact that I dislike the classes.
  • Social Performance: Very good. I have noticed no difference in my dealings with people as of late from before the schedule was implemented.

That was the last day I tried to stay on the schedule. For me, the last nail in the coffin was realizing that I simply could not do anything requiring more than four hours of concerted effort all at once. This precluded quite a bit of social interaction, made work and school a bit hard to deal with, and made me feel pretty dumb. "Oh, I'd love to go with you, but I have to go take a nap." Just go through a normal day in your life and try to find a point once every four hours where you can take a nap - bearing in mind that taking a nap involves stopping everything that you're doing, and then finding a place where you can comfortably sleep for 15 minutes, and remembering that those 15 minutes represent fully one eigth of all the sleep you'll be getting in a day.

In retrospect, I do realize that I didn't give the schedule a fair shake. I've been an insomniac for well over a decade, and have been of the opinion that sleep is for the weak, based on the fact that I get an average of four hours of sleep nightly. I entered in to this whole deal running on the assumption that it would just be business as usual, with a bit less sleep. Oh, was I wrong. Your body needs sleep. It enjoys sleep and needs sleep and, when deprived, it gets cranky.

So go out there and try the schedule! Improve your life through lack of sleep! And if you get it to work well for you, let me know how you did it! I'm doing grad school next year, God knows I need more time in my life...

Actually, for a short period of time(2-3 months) I went on the Uberman Sleep Schedule. This was during the summer (I'm still in school), so I had nothing better to do.

Now, in the actual mechanics of how I got around to doing this: Instead of starting out conforming to the 20/30 min naps, I just started taking lots of naps. I started with one about halfway through my day, and it went on like that. The number of naps increased, while the amount of time each took went down. Eventually, I evened out at 6 naps of 30 min each (the instructions I had gotten were slightly different), meaning three hours of sleep per 24 hour day.

Now, to repeat the warning: Do not, under any circumstances, delay a nap by more than an hour. I was able to strech around a bit, but when I missed a nap, it was horrible.

Another thing about this, is that I've heard of your body not getting some of the chemicals it needs. Your body generates various chemicals in the third and fourth stage sleep that you don't get while on the Uberman. Eating grapes helps, as they contain most of the chemicals you need. You might get some weird cravings, and you should generally listen to your body. This is not a very healthy way of sleeping, but you can balance it out with other things.

This will be a record of personal experiences using this method that may hopefully prove useful to someone other besides myself. The amount of data concerning this method is small in comparison to the Uberman method which is well documented by PureDoxyk. Because of this I am not completely sure of what I'm up against and feel as if I am striding into the unknown. The reason I chose the Dymaxion schedule over the Uberman is because this one is considered safer as it supposedly provides all stages of sleep unlike the Uberman, which provides only REM sleep.


I decided to do this yesterday on a train ride home. As soon as I got home at 7PM I dressed for bed and laid to sleep. I believe I slept for about 20 minutes, but was relaxed the entire time. I have had only 6 hours of sleep the previous day. I wanted to do this in stages by slowly adjusting from monophasic to polyphasic going through each method every other day (siesta, everyman) until I reach Dymaxion. To pass the time I first wanted to write stories, but I was no good and had trouble concentrating. So I decided to play the most time consuming strategy games I knew again, to help me get through the transition period. I decided on the hours to best suit the double shifts at work and social activities. I also regarded ambient conditions.


I received 5 calls during my nap, which had me conclude I need a different alarm than my phone. I woke up, ate dinner, went to my friends and drank some hot cocoa. I played a turn based strategy game (Civilization 4) as I waited for my second phase. I turned off the computer so as to make the room completely silent and laid to rest at 1:07 AM. I woke up at 1:55 and went to the bathroom, the alarm was left on snooze so I ran back to my room to turn it off. It was 2:00. I spent some time in the bathroom, ate a banana and returned to my room very tired and confused. I checked the time and it was 2:33. I was functioning very poorly. I played the game again until 7:04 AM. I had no trouble staying awake although I was bored with the game. The last hour before sleep moved the slowest. I repeated the process and went to rest. The alarm went off at 7:55 but I decided to snooze in. I woke up with no alarm at 8:37 threw myself to the floor, persuading myself not to continue sleeping. Eventually I got dressed and had breakfast. I felt sick and had a bad voice. I was better at around 10 AM after I ate and watched TV.

The couch was getting too comfy and nothing good was on Discovery so I decided to go upstairs and play computer games until my next scheduled sleep. A Real time strategy game woke me up nicely, but I wanted to continue the game I started the previous night. I started receiving calls, apparently lunch is until 2:00 PM and people though I was sleeping in on a Sunday. At this point I informed most people of my doing to see if we can adjust. The last two hours until 1 PM moved even slower. I accidentally turned off the computer earlier and waited for half an hour standing up. At about 1:07 PM a hailstorm broke out outside which provided a nice white noise as opposed to dogs barking. I fell asleep and woke up several times during the 45 minutes I gave myself. My father picked me up to go to lunch. I was nauseous and confused but that sorted itself out after about 20 minutes.


Basic math gave me troubles. I couldn’t divide 180 with 30 to check the back-story of an athlete with the dymaxion schedule. I have trouble finding proper words to express and have a large appetite. I ate calamari with potatoes, mushroom soup, mixed salad and chocolate cake.

I don't feel sleepy just tired, like I should just sit back and do nothing. Decision making was not impaired, reflexes were delayed and I had increased apathy to surroundings. I am capable of physical labor, but find it harder to do.


I'm going to go home now and sort the luggage to make the room more comfortable to sleep in. The sun is an excellent energy boost and a warm bed is a death trap if I want to get this done. I read from a fellow noder that things to do helped him survive the transition period. Except for housework and games I don't feel capable of doing much else well. I am especially afraid that I will be incapable of adjusting to my new biorhythm 'till the 31 when my friends and I go to the seaside. I find it hard to fall asleep sitting or next to other people. That is a possible threat that I will have my first day there ruined.

I am still uncertain if it is better to sleep for 30 minutes from the start a suggested or 45 minutes as calculated. i find I cannot sleep longer than 30 minutes when given my scheduled naps anyway.

Day 3

This stage was supposed to be the worst, but I just feel somewhat odd and weak, not tired at all. My eyes started to hurt, which I attributed to the computer screen so I took a break from gaming. At least until nighttime, when there isn't much else to do.

May 23

As soon as I exited the hostel from where I was writing the nod, I marched home and visited my grandmother along the way. She couldn't believe I had slept for only 2 hours and looked as I did and I couldn't believe she's walking again. She had a stroke a while back which paralyzed her right side of the body. She's recovering, but isn’t taking too many precautions by having a diet suitable for her diabetes, that gave her the stroke in the first place. It was nice to see her upright though, but if she put more effort in it, she'd be able to go swimming with us.
I ran from home from her place. This was surprising for me. I was tired, yet I managed to run a moderate distance without losing to much breath. This reassured me that the fatigue is mostly in my head and that my body is still in working condition.

I managed to just catch my evening nap, which was most enjoyable. Until 2 AM I returned to my games and repeated the procedure. I suppose melatonin is still well present in my brain. I was quite tired all night and counted the hours until morning. During that time I had an amazing tingly sensation in my brain that sometimes turned to stinging. It was like fingers tickling my brain and they every so once in a while pinched. This gave me concerns that my gray matter was deteriorating. Until now I suffered memory loss and loss of chronological orientation. I am pushing myself to write this to recollect the memories, which I would otherwise forget. The night was frustrating and tiresome, I went to bed again at 7:10 AM.

Morning of May 24

I slept in. I have no idea how it happened but I would have slept through the entire morning if I wouldn't have been awakened by my grandfather at 9:10 AM. For once, I really did mean it when I thanked him for waking me up for breakfast. My theory is that I hit the stop button instead of the snooze on the alarm. I had wonderful dreams of adventurous voyages and whenever that happens I usually have a reflex to turn off anything without thought or hesitation. This made me conclude that the alarm needs to be stationed further away from my bed. I ate eggs, did housework and finished cleaning my room 30 minutes before my noon nap.

I laid to rest at 1:10 PM, woke up at 1:55 PM as usual, but for some reason the clock showed 2:25 PM when I last hit snooze. I felt fine, tired but that wore off quickly, definitely didn't want to sleep further as I rose. I decided I need a reality check in case I am perceiving things too subjectively through my sleep deprived brain. I'm going to get an appointment with my doctor. Our national healthcare needs to be better used anyway.

So I spent the rest off the day talking to my other grandmother, the wife of the grandfather that woke me. Went to the library to do my planned research on the German epic of Siegfried. I have this wonderful book called Wagner's ring of the Nibelung by Stewart Spencer and Barry Millington. It has the German text and a translation with added features, which is better than I hoped to find. So here I am writing this nod and leaving soon.


I like sleep and will probably come back to it after my trip next week. After such a good adaptation to the dymaxion schedule I am keen on one day trying the Uberman. For now I believe the Everyman is something I can strive for, but in the end it all depends on my work and social activities. I'll sleep when I'll be dead, but that doesn't of course mean I need to get there quicker. My priority is health, extra time is unnecessary during the night anyway. You can't read or write without damaging your eyes and computer games are starting to get boring. (I don't have a personal internet connection)

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Day 3 - Ups no. 2 (Day 4 - today)

I have an interesting conclusion planned ahead but please bear with me after I have you understand I have took a short break. Yes, yes I basically failed, but have the intention of retrying if you will tomorrow. On the morning of May 24th, Day 3, I woke up to the clock stating it was 9:07 AM. Considering I went to sleep at at 7:10 AM I shortly after concluded by much mathematical evidence that I have indeed overslept, again. After this I would like to see you also understand my choices and their consequences. On one hand, I could throw myself to the floor without hesitation causing my body to go into wake-up mode the easy way and bare the tiresome consequences of my disfigured schedule in a day filled with misery and anticipation of my next napping times. This pretty much should summarize what happens after your brain realizes it didn't actually sleep long enough. My other option was to lay my head back on the pillow and let in to my fatigue. After a millisecond I realized the perfect excuse for this shameful act of backing out. I had a job interview on Thursday, therefore I need to be rested. Not that I am a wuss for ending my turmoil so abruptly, but reason suggested that I have no idea what my condition is going to be the morning before if I keep my schedules, so it's best to stick to what I know for maximum potential benefit. But as I've stated before, the job is a night shift. Returning to Dymaxion is inevitable and it will begin on Thursday. I promised my friends I could show them it can be done.

So back to Day 3, I woke up at 15:03 PM just around 8 hours of fine sleep there and guess what, I was tired. Yes I couldn't believe that the Dymaxion was responsible for this and it possibly wasn't, more about that later. I ate a classic pizza, which was awful, but I detest talking rudely about food (even garbage like fast-food), so I'll just say it wasn't that tasteful. I forgot about hydration which may have been the cause for my inability to regain strengths. I'm sorry I just didn't feel like cycling to town, typing on a keyboard or thinking. I went to my friends house, watched three good movies I would suggest to anyone: A night at the Roxbury, The boy in the Striped Pyjamas and The notebook. With emphasis on The notebook, because it made me cry and it has a lot of messages I support. The boy in the Striped Pyjamas is good to pass the time, but it isn't great. I have to read the book to see just how much of a shame the movie was. It's just anti-Nazi propaganda like all the other war films. I think we got it by the end of 1946 that the Nazi's were bad and didn't do nice things, this film just tells us that again except that it made me consider the possibility that the SS Officer guards at the camps were actually Englishmen with their revealing London accents. If you are a reasonable and mature person with adequate historical education you will probably gain nothing from it. I ate a piece of strudel at my friend's place (real good strudel at that, challenges even the one made by my grand mum). Went to bed 2:20 AM.

Day 4

Well I slept 'till 2 PM so northing's changed with me. Made me seriously consider re-entering the Dymaxion schedule today regardless of the interview. Later I had breakfast, beef, sauerkraut soup with beans (not even sure of our name for it - enolončnica) and my grandmother's strudel, yay. That just made me hungry, haven't eaten since and it's almost 7 PM. So I went to my computer and tried to get even with Montezuma for declaring war on me so suddenly, but in the end I just got stabbed in the back by Charlemagne who thankfully only has a large land force and lacks a powerful fleet. I'm playing as Munsu Mansa, leader of the Malinese in Civilization 4: Beyond the Sword, because I find it more of a challenge to achieve anything close to the European players. Now I have standards Africa deserves and am being constantly harassed for my new technological breakthroughs and the control of local oil. I'm also about to create the internet in an area near SAR.

After I realised war was inevitable I decided to deal with that some other time. Went to the library and started doin' mah thang. Once I got it all clear with my hommies from Maribor about the trip I soon had to leave 'cause the library was closin' yo. So I moseyed down to the nearby hostel where I am now and will soon be working, jeah.


The Dymaxion schedule was completely harmless to me so far. I realized I functioned no differently than when I was fully rested to my wishes. If anything I'm more up-for-anything than I would remember myself be on Dymaxion. I take back my words about the extra unnecessary time during night-time. I now suddenly find it hard to squeeze my ever progressing game time into the day. I'm either under the psychological effect that when something you rarely play is fun or am revisiting my addiction to computer games which I ended by moving away from my capable desktop computer in the first place. Well, resuming the attempt at Dymaxion, which I suppose you will call it, tomorrow. Remember the danger is all in your head, your body is protecting itself from extraordinary conditions.

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