Let shine the rhythm of life

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 08 May, 2012, 12:00am
UPDATED : Tuesday, 08 May, 2012, 12:00am


Life Biorhythm
Rating 2/10

Have you ever noticed how some days you have abundant energy and on other days you feel like a slug? On making this observation after a particularly - and unusually - energetic run, my running partner claimed it was down to biorhythms.

Paying attention to one's biorhythms, I was told, can ensure you exercise at the optimal time, and take it easy when your biorhythms are at the downward part of their cycle. The concept extends to your intellectual and emotional state.

It sounded like nonsense to me, but my running partner is very no-nonsense, and we all know that jet lag - which apparently is a disruption of your biorhythm - is very real. So I downloaded Life Biorhythm to explore.

This is one of the most basic apps reviewed; it simply comprises a daily chart, but the benefit is that the data is on your iPhone for convenient consultation. We are told that our emotional, mental and physical strength cycles between a negative and positive state, with a 23-day physical cycle, a 28-day emotional cycle, and a 33-day intellectual cycle. This means that on any particular day, your emotions are likely to be at odds with your mental acuity, or perhaps in harmony with your physical prowess. And that is why you need the chart.

So for a week I tracked my physical, emotional and intellectual state, and compared it to the biorhythm chart. No match.

However, there was a good match to my diet, sleep schedule, alcohol consumption - and the weather. And that is probably closer to the truth.

Many athletes swear by using biorhythm charts to decide when to train and rest, but research generally does not support such beliefs. In fact, the field of biorhythmics is considered a pseudoscience by conventional medicine.

Much research has been done on circadian rhythms, which are the internal wake/sleep rhythm, and how disruption of this cycle is bad for us. Consider jet lag, shift workers, insomniacs and sufferers of seasonal affective disorder. We need the sun to keep our circadian rhythm on track - and without apps to guide us.

All I know is that sunshine lifts my spirits, gives me energy and perhaps even makes me smarter.