This week’s question: How long does it take for you to adjust to the return of Daylight Saving Time (and losing an hour of sleep!) each March?
Sam Fisher, publisher
It typically takes me about 2 weeks to get my own internal clock-circadian rhythm adjusted to the change. Circadian rhythm is just a fancy term for our internal 24-hour clock; among other things, it typically regulates when we go to sleep and when we wake up. Seemingly the older I get, the harder it's becoming to adjust.
Even though we lose an hour in March, it's a much easier adjustment for me as the promise of more daylight hours after work and the prospect of warmer weather on the horizon make it much easier to deal with than the change in the fall.
I know the benefits and, conversely, the adverse effects of time change has been debated for years. Public safety, energy conservation and health are just some of the issues that both sides have used to make their case.
For me, I love the first day of winter, not because I love the cold and snow but because I know that the days are getting longer – more daylight – and the time change means more time for me to enjoy those daylight hours.
I'd love to see daylight saving time all year, but I'm happy with this weekend's change.
Sheryl Gulbranson, circulation director
You wouldn't think that the daylight saving time change would have such a big impact on life. One hour of sleep? But for me, it does.
It is not so much the loss of one hour of sleep. Since I am normally an early riser, getting adjusted to the lighter sky even earlier in morning is hard for me. Coupled with the fact that it stays light later in the evening, I somewhat struggle with the time change.
I would say that it takes me at least 3 to 4 days to catch up with the real world after the time change.
Since I have the spotlight right now, I will just put it out there: If my publisher is reading this, I might be late for work a few days this upcoming week. It is for the good of my mental health and well-being!
Jim Dunn, editorial page editor
I tell you what: for this sixty-something guy, it takes longer to adjust to time changes than it used to.
Usually it takes me at least a week to feel fully acclimated to having “sprung forward” or “fallen back” – time-wise, that is – as the clocks are changed each spring and fall.
For the first few days after the spring time change, though, I can’t help but think grumpy thoughts about Benjamin Franklin, the American statesman, patriot, diplomat, printer and inventor who first suggested the idea behind daylight saving time – and whom I peevishly blame for my body clock feeling out of sorts after losing an hour of sleep.
But the extra daylight in the evening sure comes in handy as spring and summer roll around with baseball, softball and tee-ball games, plus other activities that benefit from the sun not setting until later on.
Perhaps it comes down to whether you are a morning person or an evening person. Morning people, already up at the crack of dawn, will lose an hour of sunlight to the evening people come Sunday. Fortunately, as the length of days continues to grow, that deficit will be made up in the weeks ahead.
At any rate, bring on spring!