Starting Your Day Three Hours Earlier …

An enthusiastic convert to the 04:45 club is Ben Wilson, an ultra-runnerand founder of the Why They Win podcast series, who adopted the regime after reading an interview with Willink two months ago. “From 4.30am ‘til 7.30, those are three hours when the brain is extremely focused and nobody dares to call you at that time,” he explains. “I get to the gym and listen to an audio book at 5am. The average audio book is seven hours long, so you’re basically reading two books a week, and you’ve trained seven days, and then you join everyone for breakfast.”

He accepts that it’s a difficult regime to keep to: “You’re exhausted, but you adapt. And your brain is growing, your body’s growing. You’re basically like a character in an Aaron Sorkin screenplay because you’ve got so many ideas – although I’m knackered by 1pm, so at lunchtime I try and do some kind of exercise where I sweat hard and rejuvenate myself.”

As a lifestyle habit, it’s also refreshingly free of the dubious science and machismo that surrounded the craze for polyphasic sleeping (breaking up your sleep into sessions) a few years ago. “The biggest challenge is the alarm clock in the morning,” says Wilson. “The reason everyone who does it bonds online is that if you can maintain that discipline then it’s the most mentally arduous thing you have to do all day. Even if I’ve been out for a drink, I make myself get up and train through it – you feel like you’re reclaiming your life back.”

By lunchtime, I can feel my productivity starting to trail off, but it’s incredible how unhurried the day feels, and how in control of my schedule I am. “The reason we do all these macho things is because we’ve got it so easy in so many ways now,” says Wilson. “It’s great for your ego to reclaim something primal. You do tough things and you get tougher. It’s a wonderful feeling.”

via AskMen