You Can Catch Up on Sleep Over the Weekend: True or False?
The age-old debate: Albeit glorious, do those 12-hour Saturday binge sleeps really do anything for a week’s worth of work deadlines and late drinks and four-hour nights?
That’s a big fat nope. Terry Gross’s uber-informative Fresh Air interview with Matthew Walker, the director of the Center for Human Sleep Science at the University of California, Berkeley, just set us straight.
“Sleep is not like the bank—so you can't accumulate a debt and then try and pay it off at a later point in time,” Walker says. “The brain has no capacity to get back that lost sleep.” Damn it. There go our weekend plans.
So how can you make sure you’re consistently well-rested? Try to wake up at the same time every morning, Walker advises. Even on the weekends, 6 a.m.-weekday-spin-class devotees. And no matter what time you went to bed the night before. This way, you keep your body’s internal clock consistent, and you’re more apt to doze off early the next night and get actual quality sleep.
All we gotta say now is: Sorry, parents. You never had a dog in this fight.