Vitality and Performance
Challenge helps us grow, become stronger, and feeds our vitality. Mastering challenges often depends on building up our capacity through practice and effort interspersed by periods of rest and recovery. Knowing the best timing for capacity building and effective recovery leads to optimized performance. Circadian synchrony provides a method for identifying the best timing for periods of peak effort and gives you tools for mastering physical and cognitive challenges.
Studies have clearly demonstrated that in healthy adults physical stamina is greatest in the afternoon. All the mechanisms behind this cyclical peak in physical performance are not fully understood, however, we do know quite a bit about other physiological cycles that contribute to the afternoon stamina peak. Some of those contributory cycles are the late afternoon-early evening peak in core body temperature, and the mid-afternoon decrease in skin blood flow (which in turn helps the core temperature rise). A cyclical afternoon peak in blood concentration (osmolality) also seems to play a role in peak stamina, however, those mechanisms are still being sorted out.
Like the peak in physical stamina, there are late afternoon-early evening peaks in reaction times, cognitive processing and perhaps even sociability. The mechanisms driving and synchronizing these peaks are not as well understood as the stamina peak, however, they seem to be associated with the late afternoon-evening peak in core body temperature too. Mechanisms related to the associations between elevated core temperature and increased alertness and nerve conduction speed are being studied.
Fortunately, you don’t need to be a scientist and understand all the details of these studies in order to use the timing of meals, light, temperature and activities to help you understand and optimize your performance peaks. Using published research data on how light, food, sleep and activity timing synchronize core body temperature and peak performance, we at AuraViva are building mobile applications to help you shift your daily routines toward times and cycles that enhance vitality and performance. We are targeting mid-December to launch the first application. If you want us to let you know when the application launches and receive a 2 week free trial, sign up for our newsletter. Want to learn more about the science linking core body temperature, circadian synchrony and peak performance? Then check out the circadian rhythms section of our website.