Your biology runs on a circadian rhythm. Circadian rhythm means daily rhythm. What this means is throughout the course of the day your biological processes have a natural ebb and flow. Some of the more well known ones are body temp, digestion, alertness, and sleep.
Have you ever noticed how it just seems like so much work to do certain things during the day? Chances are you are working against your body’s natural rhythm.
To figure out your chronotype you will need the following items.
- Digital mouth thermometer
- A notebook or logbook to record
- Alarm setup on your phone
As your body prepares itself for sleep, it starts to lower your internal core temp. We can use this to help determine what your natural body rhythm is. It isn’t a big change like when you have a fever, but only a matter of tenths of degrees. As you build up the data points, a pattern will show.
- You are going to record your temperature for 5 days. Every hour from 5:00pm until bedtime you will record your temperature in your notebook.
- After the 5 days you should see a pattern of your body temperature starting to decrease between 7:00pm and 10:00pm.
- Taking your results compare them to this table.
Early to bed Early to rise Chronotype– Temperature starts decreasing around 7:00pm
Standard Chronotype – Temperature starts decreasing around 9:00pm
Late to bed late to rise Chronotype– Temperature starts decreasing around 10:00pm
Another quick quiz you can take was developed by Brazilian researchers.
1). Rate your energy on a scale of 1 (very low) to 5 (very high) in the morning.
2). Rate your energy on a scale of 1 (very low) to 5 (very high) in the evening.
Subtract the number you wrote in question 2 from the answer you wrote for question 1.
4,3,or 2 you are a Early chronotype
1,0,-1 you are a Standard chronotype
-4,-3, -2 you are a Late chronotype
Early chronotype – You are a morning driven person. You tend to wake up earlier than most people ready to hit the gym, take care of business, or other self care. You have a medium drive for sleep.
Standard chronotype – 50% of the population is bear chronotype. You are a good sleeper waking around 7:00am. You have a normal sleep drive.
Late chronotype – You like to sleep late and stay up late. You get an energy boost at night.
So which chronotype best describes you?
Knowing your chronotype can help you structure how your day is laid out to best optimize your sleep/wake cycle, metabolism, and hormones.