Lunch: Chicken and spinach salad with sun-dried tomato pesto and ½ avocado
Dinner: Beef stir fry and coconut milk
As you can see from previous posts I’m not averse to supplementation. I used to think that you could get pills to achieve whatever you wanted. When I was 18 I ordered a load of questionable stuff from bodybuilding.com. When I say questionable, I don’t mean steroids, testosterone or growth hormone. I mean useless powders and pills that were never gonna do anything.
I’m still open to the idea that well researched, intelligent supplementation can have a massive benefits. I’ve tried ecdysterone, DHEA, Tim Ferriss’s PAGG stack, Medium Chain Triglyceride Oil, plus all the supplements mentioned previously. I had high hopes for the Medium Chain Triglyceride Oil. It was recommended by a lot of people from a variety of backgrounds; academics, MMA fighters, and a load of people in the n=1 community. Apparently it was gonna give me superhuman concentration and make me 1 million% more productive. The reviews were positive enough for me to try it. I’m currently experimenting with it, but I haven’t noticed any life changing improvements.
I’m still interested in supplements that can improve my cognitive performance. But tbh, to this day the most powerful hack for making myself more productive during the day is… getting a good night’s sleep. It’s not new, it’s not sexy or innovative. It’s the kind of advice you’d get from your mum. Trying to do a day’s work when I haven’t had a good night’s sleep is like running in water. Everything requires more effort, my memory is worse, and I’m more likely to make mistakes…and generally not be the bundle of joy that I usually am.
So what makes a good night’s sleep? It’s not just a case of getting to bed early enough. And more sleep isn’t necessarily better. There are four factors that I think are most important.
- Get enough sleep
8/9 hours apparently. I get about 7.
- Get good quality sleep
No lights in the room (use an eye mask as per the featured image if necessary)
No alcohol (or other “stimulants”)
Good sleeping position
- Wake naturally at the end of a sleep cycle
Not by alarm. Not while in deep sleep.
- Sleep regular hours
Even at the weekend
I’ll write a longer piece on each of these four later. Whether you’re “Paleo” or not, it is universally accepted that people should increase the amount and improve the quality of they’re sleep.