The Wonders of the Coffee Nap

Recently I have begun indulging in coffee naps, aka napuccino. In the early afternoon after my noon time swim and lunch, I always feel drowsy. With or without a nap, I typically slow down in the afternoon entering into a dead energy zone from about 2 pm until 5 pm. With the coffee nap though I experience a burst of energy that propels me into an afternoon of activity.

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See also, The Fast Answer to Your Midday Drowsiness by Stacy Knoderer

Here’s how it works. Right before I want to take a short power nap (15-20) I down a cup of espresso. (I prepare my espresso on the stove with my Moka pot then make a cappuccino with condensed goats milk.) Then I crawl into bed and sleep. While it may feel like hours have passed, in less than 30 minutes I emerge from the slumber charged with energy, physically enthusiastic to get back to work. And this is not just some weird hipster urban legend. There is actual science behind the phenomenon.

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My often used Moka pot with my favorite little South African mug.

 

Behold, the Wikipedia entry on Coffee Nap:

Research suggests that coffee naps were more effective than regular naps in improving post-nap alertness and cognitive functioning.[4][5] The combination of caffeine plus a short nap helps the body get rid of sleep-inducing chemical compounds known as adenosine, according to researchers.[6] Since it takes the body about 20 minutes to respond to the caffeine, the person is fully alert following the nap,[6] and the caffeine does not interfere with the nap itself. One account suggested that it was like a “double shot of energy” from the stimulating boost from caffeine plus better alertness from napping.[1]

Why don’t you try the coffee nap and tell me what happens (unless you are one of those folks who have strange reactions to caffeine like one of my housemates.)

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What I especially love about the coffee nap is that it blends two of my favorite cultural practices together. The Spanish custom of the Siesta with the Swedish custom of a coffee break called Fika. I think I will rename the coffee nap and instead call it: Fika Siesta Resurrection.

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