When was the last time you heard someone talk about getting in shape and losing weight and they said they were going to start by addressing sleep? I’m in the health and fitness business, and I’ve never heard someone say that.
Why not? Sleep isn’t sexy. Getting more sleep means having less time to do other things. In the type-A, results-oriented, success-driven world we live in, many people look at sleep as a waste of time. It’s considered to be something optional and can even be seen as a sign of weakness.
But that’s not what Dr. Kirk Parsley would say.
Kirk Parsley is first and foremost a doctor. He’s been practicing medicine for over twelve years. Doc was also a U.S. Navy SEAL and since earning his medical degree, has spent much of his time serving as the Undersea Medical Officer at Naval Special Warfare Group One. It’s safe to say given his credentials that Kirk knows what it takes to be fit, tough, and get the job done.
But he is also a sleep expert. He’s been a member of the American Academy of Sleep Medicine since 2006 and has served as Naval Special Warfare’s expert on sleep medicine. Most of what he does today is work with people to help them achieve optimal health — and much of that work is centered around sleep and recovery.
Doc is full of stories, analogies, and anecdotes that make his message simple and clear. We are sleep deprived and to rectify this we must be willing to swim upstream, against the flow of societal norms.
Our conversation is long, but well worth the time. You may even get excited about getting a pair of blue-blocking sunglasses after it’s all said and done!
Follow Doc Parsley on Twitter.
Doc Parsley — Dr. Kirk Parsley’s website for more information and where to purchase the “sleep cocktail.”
Why Zebras Don’t Get Ulcers — by Robert M. Sapolsky.
Stages of Sleep — Information on sleep stages including slow wave.
REM Sleep — Article on rapid eye movement.
Sleep Pressure — More information about sleep pressure and circadian rhythm.
Eagle Eye — Shooting glasses Kirk recommends for blocking out blue light at night.
Jocko Podcast — Hosted by retired Navy SEAL Jocko Willink.