The Optimized Gentleman

How Many Hours of Sleep Should Most Men Get Per Night?

how-many-hours-of-sleep

To understand how many hours of sleep you should get per night as a man… First, think of your body and mind as batteries, which are slowly emptied throughout the day. For these batteries to function at full efficiency, they have to be charged for a certain amount of time.

Charging these batteries to less-than-optimal, will lead to emptying them sooner than intended. Over the long haul, this deteriorates their efficiency. To clarify how you can optimize your sleep patterns, we’ve released an article, discussing whether sleep trackers are accurate!

Nighttime sleep is what powers up your mind and fortifies every system and function within the body. But how much sleep is needed for your body to be replenished, exactly? Let’s find out…

Here’s How Many Sleep Hours Most Men Should Be Getting:

According to the National Sleep Foundation’s guidelines, healthy adult men require 7-9 hours of sleep every night. The amount of sleep you need to wake up refreshed and energized varies upon a man’s genetics and age. But generally, the average man needs between 7-9 hours.

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How Much Sleep Do You Need?

It’s important to understand that the optimal amount of sleep tends to vary from one guy to another. The guidelines provided by the National Sleep Foundation are merely used as a reference.

You’ll notice that these guidelines don’t specify the number of hours required for each age group. Instead, they specify a range.

This is to leave some wiggle room for people with different sleep needs, due to unique circumstances. But it begs the question – how can you determine the exact amount of sleep that your body and mind need each night?

Well, to do so, there are a few factors you should take into consideration, including your daily activities, age, overall health, and day-to-day sleep patterns.

Try gauging your productivity and overall performance on only seven hours of sleep. If you’re groggy and tired when you wake up in the morning, then you probably need more than seven.

This is especially the case if you engage in sports or training (you should) or has a labor-intensive job. This is because your energy expenditure is going to be higher than the average Joe with a sedentary desk job.

Part of why we started The Optimized Gentleman, was to help guys transition from a “working for the man” vibe, to a fit, free, independent lifestyle.

More on this coming soon…

Begin to Factor In Any Existing Health Conditions

If you have obstructive sleep apnea for instance, you should get yourself treated for it. Because no matter how much sleep you get, apnea is likely to interrupt your nightly sleep cycles.

This, in turn, leads to you feeling groggy and tired in the morning – not good.

For a high-value man to be efficiently firing on all cylinders, you’ll need to wake up refreshed. Ready to crush your daily tasks that move the needle on your progress to independence.

Work that matters, that adds value to customers, (thereby getting you paid consistently), requires streamlined focus. You can’t get that with just a few hours!

You’ll also want to take your caffeine consumption and timing into consideration.

If you need a ton of caffeine to get you going through your average workday, you’re probably not getting enough sleep.

Caffeine, black coffee, matcha, whatever your choice – should supplement your energy. Increase your focus. Give you an extra boost to crank out the heavy lifting at your job, or the business you’re building…

It should never replace sleep, or be required to live out another regular day!

Your assessment based on these different factors should help you pinpoint the amount of time you need per night to feel completely energized and replenished.

The Physical & Mental Importance of Sleep

Sleep quality has a directly proportional relationship with your physical and mental health. The better you sleep, the more productive, mentally dialed in, healthy, and emotionally balanced you’ll be.

This is ridiculously important for an “optimized” man, looking to be:

  • in balance, on point with work & priorities,
  • focused on getting business results, increasing income & wealth,
  • powerful, flexible, strong in the right movements & lifts, and
  • happy, due to feeling accomplished, with momentum on his side!

Sleep influences virtually all of your bodily systems, hormones (like Testosterone, HGH, dopamine) and functions as a man…

… from your immune system, to body fat distribution, to calorie regulation. It also influences vitality, creativity, and concentration.

There’s literally no other activity you can engage in that delivers as many benefits as proper sleep does – trust us; we’ve looked!

Getting the required amount of sleep isn’t always an option, though, maybe due to a crowded schedule or health conditions that impair your sleep.

Unfortunately, when we go through our work days on fewer hours of sleep, our energy, mood, and mental efficiency are all affected significantly. Moreover, lack of sleep impairs your ability to deal with stress by a large margin.

Chronic sleep loss can result in hazardous physical and mental conditions.

When you sleep, your body shuts down but your brain remains active, to oversee that your body gets its needed biological maintenance routine.

When you cut back on sleep, you’re robbing your brain of enough time to replenish the body. This causes you to wake up with less than your true potential, stemming from undercharged batteries. Cut back on sleep long enough, and you’re headed for an emotional, mental, or physical breakdown!

Having said that, it’s important you make time for adequate sleep.

And if you have any health conditions that may be impairing your sleep quality – like sleep apnea, insomnia, narcolepsy, or restless leg syndrome – you have to get them addressed as soon as possible.

Signs You’re Not Getting Enough Sleep

It can be hard for ambitious men who’ve made it a habit to skimp on their sleep, to know whether they’re getting enough.

A lot of guys tend to do this, in order to get more accomplished… But the ironic thing is, you’d be more focused, charged up, and dialed in if you’d just get the proper sleep.

You can get away with this in your 20s, and maybe even in your 30s…

But it’s never optimal. That “sleep debt” always needs to be repaid somehow, and it’s harder to recover from as an older guy.

Go to bed and wake up early, and you’ll have plenty of time to get ahead in life. If your priorities are straight, with proper health, balance, and focused deep work…

You’ll always have plenty of time. Think about it – for most people, things like dozing off after dinner, feeling sleepy during a meeting, or not being able to focus for long (without caffeine) are normal.

This is because they’ve forgotten how it feels to be fully alert! Do you want to submit to this type of average lifestyle? We didn’t think so.

So how can you determine whether or not you’re sleep deprived?

Well, if you can’t seem to wake up without an alarm clock, or if you’re constantly hitting the snooze button… chances are you’re not getting enough sleep.

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Also, if you find it hard to get out of bed without feeling sluggish and groggy, you probably didn’t get as much sleep as your body requires.

Additionally, if you find yourself getting sleepy in warm rooms, meetings, lecture halls, or after heavy meals… you guessed it!

Other signs you may not be getting enough sleep include:

  • falling asleep while reclining on the couch,
  • needing frequent afternoon naps,
  • sleeping in on the weekend,
  • falling asleep seconds after hitting the hay, and
  • feeling drowsy while driving (look out!)

8 Tips for Getting the Right Amount of Sleep For Your Body

There’s a host of actionable tips you can implement into your lifestyle, in order to lock in the amount of sleep you need for productivity, emotional balance, and mental sharpness.

Let’s go over a few of these tips:

  1. Set a Sleep Schedule. Your circadian rhythm – also known as the body’s internal clock – is most efficient when you set (and stick to!) a sleep schedule. Hit the hay between 10:00 and 11:00 P.M. if you wish to wake up energized at around 7:00 A.M. or earlier.
  2. Rule Out Medical Causes. If you suspect you’re suffering from a medical condition that may be causing your sleep deprivation, rule it out by consulting your doctor.
  3. Lead An Active Lifestyle. According to the National Sleep Foundation, regular exercise can notably improve your sleep quality. Around 30 minutes of exercise every day is adequate; shoot for more.
  4. Reduce Caffeine Consumption. If you want a great night’s sleep, you shouldn’t be drinking caffeinated beverages beforehand. Limit your consumption of alcohol, sugary foods, and heavy meals before bedtime. And ideally, cut out caffeine for the day around 2-3 P.M.
  5. Optimize Your Bedroom. Before hitting the hay, you need to make sure your bedroom is quiet, cool, and dark. And if your bed, mattress, or pillows cause you any discomfort, consider investing in better upgrades. Your sleep ROI will thank you.
  6. Learn to Manage Your Stress. Stress is a sworn enemy of good sleep. Stress from business work, school, or family affairs can greatly affect your sleep cycles.
  7. Reduce Screen Exposure. Before bedtime, staring into blue screens is one of the worst things you could possibly do. Doesn’t matter if it’s your laptop, smartphone, tablet, or TV (you shouldn’t be wasting your life on TV anyways). You must avoid anything emitting blue light.
  8. Clear Your Mind. If nighttime is a time of anxiousness and worry for you, you need to learn how to clear your mind. You can write down how you plan to deal with the problem bothering you, and apply meditation or breath work to cease thoughts about it ’til tomorrow.

Related Sleep Hours Questions

What’s the Best Time For Men to Sleep and Wake Up?

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For you to feel fully replenished, you need 5-6 full sleep cycles, each spanning ~90 minutes. So, if you intend to wake up at 6:30 A.M., hit the hay at 10:45 P.M. (5 cycles) or 9:15 P.M. (6 cycles).

You need to adjust your bedtime based on the amount of sleep recommended by the National Sleep Foundation, by age group and based on when you intend to wake up.

It’s extremely powerful to get up before everyone else, crack out all the business tasks you need to do, exercise, move, and stretch… and still have the rest of the day to do whatever you’d like!

If you’re not quite there yet because you have a main job to pay your bills, this is something to work towards. Over time, T.O.G. will provide guidance in this direction, so you can regain control of your life and work schedules.

All in all, we’d recommend you hit the sack anywhere between 10:00 P.M. and 11:00 PM, to wake up at around 7:00 A.M. or earlier.

Does Lack of Sleep Affect Testosterone Production?

In short, hell yeah it does!

According to several studies, a gradual decrease in sleep is linked to a whopping 10-15 percent decrease in testosterone production – just by cutting a few hours each night!

The average nightly amount was around five hours, for men in the linked study. This study showed that the decrease in T, was analogous to these men aging by 10 to 15 years!

In fact, if you’d like to do a deep dive on sleep and testosterone levels, you can read our full article on it.

Remember to get the maximum amount of sleep per night (7-9 hours for most guys) and never skimp on it. Sleep is one of the most important aspects to experience full, optimized health and productivity as a man.

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