If there is one aspect of life that seems to get in the way of a good time more than anything else, it is the fact that we, as humans on borrowed time, must occasionally get some sleep in order to function without hallucinogenic repercussions – and not the right kind either. But we’re born and bred hell raisers, at least those of us who let our balls do the talking, so getting the recommended eight hours of sleep per night pretty much means having to chop the head off the old trouser snake (metaphorically, of course) long before it is ready to go down for the count. This often translates to a next to non-existent social life, which means a man can be forced to endure the dull and drab nature of the daily grind (day in and day out) without so much as a random blow job in the alley of his local bar to get him through to the next day. Oh, the humanity!
So we burn that candle at both ends. We go to work and, after the day is done, we drink ourselves numb in our friendly neighborhood watering hole, hoping and praying that some sex-starved love Muppet will walk through the door and utter the words, Buy me a drink or two, bad boy, and I’ll show you how I got the nickname Badger Taint! But it’s a numbers game, this life, so getting forty winks (or even twenty) doesn’t really enter into the equation – like fucking never.
Most guys are of the mindset that if they pour it on all week long, sliding by on a couple hours of rest each night, that they’ll just use the weekend to make up for the loss. Although this might sound like a solid approach to L-I-V-I-N’, it turns out that embracing the sleep when I’m dead lifestyle is giving us a savage beat down.
A recent study published in the latest journal Current Biology shows that people who grind it out Monday through Friday and then try to make up for lost sleep over the weekend are more likely to eat like shit and develop serious health issues. Why are we not surprised? To come to this conclusion, researchers with the Sleep and Chronobiology Lab at the University of Colorado Boulder examined a group of healthy individuals between the ages of 18 and 39 and put them through various sleep routines. Some were allowed to sleep for nine hours a night, while others were restricted to five hours or less. However, on the weekends, all of the participants were allowed to rest as much as they wanted. But come Monday, they were put through the ringers of limited sleep again.
This schedule wreaked havoc on some.
Researchers found that the sleep-deprived groups were eating more and gaining more weight than the groups allowed to bed down for a reasonable amount of time. These piss-poor eating habits caused issues with insulin sensitivity, which researchers say is the first warning sign of diabetes.
Lead study author Kenneth Wright calls the effects “social jetlag,” whereby the disruption of a person’s sleep cycle brings about nasty health problems that could rear their ugly heads later down the road.
This means while raising hell throughout the week and playing catch up on Saturday and Sunday might be a good enough strategy for now, but there may come a time when your body pays you back like a motherfucker.
“I think people feel that they can be machines during the week and then become human on the weekends,” Azizi Seixas, a sleep expert and assistant professor at the New York University School of Medicine, told NBC News. “Sleep isn’t a math game, you can’t balance it out. Your body needs a schedule for a reason. This demonstrates the importance of having a regular sleep schedule.”
But the reality is life is short. We use this cliché as an excuse for throwing caution to the wind and just having the best time we can while there is still time to do it. So, even if science was reporting that sleep deprivation would eventually cause our dicks to shrivel up and fall off, it wouldn’t be enough to inspire young, horny men to blow off the possibility of drunken sexual experiences in exchange for more sleep. That’s never going to happen. None of these fuckers think they’re going to live to see forty anyway!
The good news is, making up for lost sleep is a totally legit approach to combating a hell-raising lifestyle, according to Harvard University.
Researchers there say that if a person loses 10 hours of sleep during the week, they can squeeze in an extra three or four hours over the weekend and be good to go. If a person has spent decades disregarding sleep, recouping that loss is going to take more than just a weekend in bed. Experts say for the really burned out individual, taking a vacation is probably a good move. But rather than staying up to all hours drinking and trying to get laid, get as much as 12 hours of sleep per night.
Once a person has hit the old reset button, Harvard suggests getting into a more structured sleep routine. A person can do this at 24-years old, or they can wait until they can wait until they’re old, overweight and their balls are dragging the ground. Pro Tip: The later you wait, the more stories you’ll have to tell.
Our advice is to have as much fun as possible before it all comes to a screeching halt. And that’s going to happen, sooner or later, we hate to tell you. So, live now, pay later – it’s the American way! Of course, you might want to make sure your health insurance coverage is top notch before it gets too late in the game. Colostomy bags, rascal scooters, and those walkers with tennis balls on the legs, all of that shit that you’ll need if cirrhosis of the liver or something else doesn’t kill you first is super expensive!
More From Mike: