The solution to Jet-Lag May 23, 2007Posted by dorigo in personal, science, travel.
I did not think it would work, but it appears it is. Unless, of course, I am damaging my sleep cycle – something which might only become apparent in a longer time scale.
What I am talking about is the cure to the 7-hour jet-lag one picks up by flying from Italy to Chicago. The no-brainer recipe I cooked up reads: sleep when you used to. That is, go to bed when it is time to in the country you left, and sleep for eight hours straight.
Of course, that is easier said than done: the main objection is that by doing so one has a very limited social life, having to disappear from the scene at no later than 4PM. And it is also not easy to catch sleep when the sun is shining outside – especially with the crappy blinds that windows around here are equipped with. Also, the noise of the daytime activities of your neighbors might get in the way of a successful implementation of the plan.
Since I am here in Chicago for a week, during which I am running a night shift at the CDF control room, it made sense to try the above plan nonetheless. I came equipped with ear-plugs for the noise, sleep masks for the light of the day, and I also used a few sleeping pills on the first few days here.
It seems to work. When I wake up, a little later than 11PM, I feel it is like early morning. Then I go to work, and it helps being enclosed in a room with no windows to the outside until 8AM. By the time I get out I see the light of the day, and I have the distinct feeling that it is early afternoon! Then, I have dinner at 1PM, and I start to feel sleepy by 3PM. This has gone on for a week now, and I am curious to see how it feels when I travel back to Italy this Saturday.
I am quite sure I have invented nothing, and many people have used this method before. If you have, let me know what are your feelings about it…