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  1. #1
    SilvrSurfr's Avatar
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    Hot Sleepers vs. Cold Sleepers

    I'm a hot sleeper, but I give a lot of thought to why people are so different. I haven't actually done any research on this, just a lot of thinking. Here are the factors I think come into play:

    1. Metabolism - it seems the slower your metabolism, the colder you'll be, though this makes no sense to me. In fact, I'd consider my metabolism to be fairly slow. I usually eat only one meal a day, but I'm a hot sleeper.
    2. Body type or somatotype (endo, ecto or mesomorphic): I think I'm somewhere between an ectomorph (low fat storage) and a mesomorph (medium), but one would think the endormorphs (high fat storage) would be the warmest. However, It seems the chubbier types are always cold people. Very counterintuitive.
    3. Genetic background - the Celtic, Scandinavian and Germanic (and Eskimo, I'm sure) peoples have a definite advantage on Mediterranean and equatorial cultures. We've had to adapt to cold weather for a much longer time since our people settled in colder climes. I'm Irish and German so cold weather is in my blood.
    4. Mental attitude - I've noticed that cold people think about being cold a lot more than normal. You know the type - it's 35 degrees outside and they're dressed for subzero temperatures. That's T-shirt weather to me (unless I'll be out there for a while). Unless I'm gonna be out in the cold for more than 15 minutes, I don't even wear a coat or gloves down into the teens. A lot of it is psychological - if you think you're gonna get cold, you get cold, and if you don't you won't.

    You see this positive attitude toward cold weather in people who work outdoors a lot. They don't let their brain run wild with "cold" thoughts.
    5. Experience - the more you spend time in cold weather, the less likely you are to get cold.
    6. Sleeping habits - the cold sleepers want and need to be toasty warm to get to sleep, whereas the hot sleepers like me probably prefer a nip in the air for sleeping.
    7. REM sleep - the average sleeper experiences about 25% of REM sleep per night. I think hot sleepers have a much higher percentage of REM sleep. As soon as I kick into REM sleep (usually about three hours into the night) and start dreaming, I get hot as hell and start kicking off the quilts and trying to get some ventilation.

    I don't mind being hot 'cause I love the dreams that come with REM sleep - it's better than watching TV!

    Thoughts?

  2. #2
    BillyBob58's Avatar
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    How about gender, not counting temporary states like menopause? Most of the women I have been around in my life have almost always been colder natured than me, often way colder. Not so with most other men. Now things vary a lot even with the gender- one man can be more sensitive to the cold than another- but still gender seems to be a frequent contributor.
    For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory that is to be revealed to us....that the creation itself also will be set free from its slavery to corruption into the freedom of the glory of the children of God. For we know that the whole creation groans and suffers the pains of childbirth together until now.
    Romans 8:18,21-22

  3. #3
    Senior Member Cannibal's Avatar
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    I am a hot sleeper. Genuine Draft (GF) is a cold sleeper. Both of us are pretty far to one side or the other.

    I do believe some of it is a result of mindset, but genetics are at play here too. I'm one of those folks that always runs a temperature; usually 1.5 to 2 degrees above normal. Means I'll die younger (brightest flame and all that), but it allows me to stay comfortable where others aren't. I also tend to be one of those endormorph folks, but dang do I love cheeseburgers.

    Genuine Draft spent the bulk of her life in south Florida where "seasons" is considered a funny word used by carpet-baggers. I'm guessing environmental conditions have had an impact. Both of our lineage traces back to northern Europe, but at some point, our physiology took different paths. Our predominant topic for...uhhh...disagreements has always been climate control in the house. She wants it set where my grandma keeps it and I want it set so I can leave food on the counters and not worry about it.

    My belief is that it is almost completely genetic. There are variables, sure, but I am not alone in my family for being warm-blooded, nor is she alone in her family of shivering folks.
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    SilvrSurfr's Avatar
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    I'm a hot sleeper with a constant temperature of 97.4 degrees, which makes me reptilian, I guess.

    The older I get, the lower the thermostat goes. Ten years ago I wanted the thermostat set to 72, three years ago I liked 65 degrees, and this year I'm down to 55 degrees. Sixty degrees inside just seems so hot to me now.

    Since women have a higher percentage of body fat than men, you would think they would be warmer.

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    Senior Member BullFrog's Avatar
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    Men tend to crank out more heat than women. Our metabolisms just run higher. Usually, men sleep warmer, despite the lower % body fat.
    Comically bad at DIY

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    Senior Member ikemouser's Avatar
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    thoughts?

    i think you think too much. =P

  7. #7
    SilvrSurfr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ikemouser View Post
    thoughts?

    i think you think too much. =P
    I've been accused of worse. An understanding of physiology can be beneficial in a survival situation! As Clint Eastwood once said, "A man's got to know his limitations."

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    Senior Member Slo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SilvrSurfr View Post
    I'm a hot sleeper with a constant temperature of 97.4 degrees, which makes me reptilian, I guess.

    The older I get, the lower the thermostat goes. Ten years ago I wanted the thermostat set to 72, three years ago I liked 65 degrees, and this year I'm down to 55 degrees. Sixty degrees inside just seems so hot to me now.

    Since women have a higher percentage of body fat than men, you would think they would be warmer.
    I'm always the same temp, 97.4, and find that I get cold in cold weather and hot in hot weather. Summertime I crank the AC to stay cool and wintertime I layer up to stay warm. I also find that as long as my legs and hands and ears are warm, I can skimp on the bulky coats. Warmer in longjohns and a lined hoodie than no johns and a down coat.
    "I ain't here for a long time, I'm here for a good time"

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    Doctari's Avatar
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    I'd like to throw another theory into the mix: Where you grew up, ie usual (Mean?) Temp. My former work partner (one of my current hiking partners) is from South Florida, He's a bit taller than me, I'm about his weight, similar ancestry (Scandinavian & etc.) but there is a VERY narrow window when we can both hike together. I can't hike above about 90 degrees, Him not below about 60, at least for an overnight trip.

    I also second the gender difference. We are similar ages, similar weights & ancestry. Right now my wife is wearing,,,, a lot, AND is under two blankets, I'm sitting here in the same room wearing a tee & kilt. She is still cold, I'm comfy. It's 70 in here.

    I am about 60 Lbs over weight, so I suspect that has some to do with me staying warm when thinner people freeze, but some of my companions are,,,, "Fluffier" then I & still are colder.
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  10. #10
    Senior Member perdidochas's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SilvrSurfr View Post
    I'm a hot sleeper, but I give a lot of thought to why people are so different. I haven't actually done any research on this, just a lot of thinking. Here are the factors I think come into play:

    1. Metabolism - it seems the slower your metabolism, the colder you'll be, though this makes no sense to me. In fact, I'd consider my metabolism to be fairly slow. I usually eat only one meal a day, but I'm a hot sleeper.
    2. Body type or somatotype (endo, ecto or mesomorphic): I think I'm somewhere between an ectomorph (low fat storage) and a mesomorph (medium), but one would think the endormorphs (high fat storage) would be the warmest. However, It seems the chubbier types are always cold people. Very counterintuitive.
    3. Genetic background - the Celtic, Scandinavian and Germanic (and Eskimo, I'm sure) peoples have a definite advantage on Mediterranean and equatorial cultures. We've had to adapt to cold weather for a much longer time since our people settled in colder climes. I'm Irish and German so cold weather is in my blood.
    4. Mental attitude - I've noticed that cold people think about being cold a lot more than normal. You know the type - it's 35 degrees outside and they're dressed for subzero temperatures. That's T-shirt weather to me (unless I'll be out there for a while). Unless I'm gonna be out in the cold for more than 15 minutes, I don't even wear a coat or gloves down into the teens. A lot of it is psychological - if you think you're gonna get cold, you get cold, and if you don't you won't.

    You see this positive attitude toward cold weather in people who work outdoors a lot. They don't let their brain run wild with "cold" thoughts.
    5. Experience - the more you spend time in cold weather, the less likely you are to get cold.
    6. Sleeping habits - the cold sleepers want and need to be toasty warm to get to sleep, whereas the hot sleepers like me probably prefer a nip in the air for sleeping.
    7. REM sleep - the average sleeper experiences about 25% of REM sleep per night. I think hot sleepers have a much higher percentage of REM sleep. As soon as I kick into REM sleep (usually about three hours into the night) and start dreaming, I get hot as hell and start kicking off the quilts and trying to get some ventilation.

    I don't mind being hot 'cause I love the dreams that come with REM sleep - it's better than watching TV!

    Thoughts?
    Local adaptation is important as well. The longer I live in Florida, the colder a sleeper I become.

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