I never got around to writing up my polyphasic sleep experiment. It didn’t turn out so well. Despite what I said after 36 hours and 50 hours, after four days we all just slept for a full nights sleep by mistake.
Efforts to continue were hampered by similar such unexpected sleeps, and my research at uni was suffering dramatically. The problem was a lack of rigourousness. Oversleeps simply cannot happen, or your body doesn’t adapt to the half-hour nap.
Secondly, it’s damn hard to keep awake for the first four days. I should have expected this, but we all underestimated greatly the amount of will power required to physically keep moving. And once you’ve stopped, that’s it. A five minute sit down on the couch is doom in the critical stages.
I’m seriously considering re-starting my experiment tonight to see if I can do better. It depends if I can finish my paper once and for all. If so, my target is for 36 hours on a strict schedule; if I can’t make that, I can’t make anything. Once I get there, I’ll decide what to do next.