Everyman 4, or E4, is the third Everyman schedule in the Everyman polyphasic series. Even though the structure of the schedule is very short, the longest sleep block being only 90m, E4 now has the shortest core length and is one of the final steps (the other being E5) before the transition to Uberman. It consists of 4 naps to be scheduled each day, and each nap lasts for 20m, as usual. Following the Formula of Puredoxyk, E4 is now the most difficult Everyman schedule, with the total sleep being a measly 2h50m each day. It is regarded as a superhuman compromise between the sustainable/somewhat friendly E3 and the extreme Uberman. Because of the near impossibility for an average polyphasic sleeper to adapt to this schedule, it is advised that inexperienced or non-mutant sleepers should not attempt this schedule.
E4 keeps the same premises as other Everyman schedules, but under much harsher conditions. The core sleep, the small "nucleus" of the schedule, serves to provide a hopefully sufficient amount of SWS, the deepest stage of sleep that is crucial for quality of life and well-being. The naps, as usual, will provide REM sleep and traces of light sleep. However, what works on its less extreme counterparts, E2 and E3 does not work the same on E4. The core sleep is simply not long enough to sustain a 90m SWS requirement each day, taking into account of transitional light sleep. Because of this reason, at least one nap will contain SWS, because SWS' homeostatic pressure can creep into any naps, especially the last nap on the schedule.
To ensure the most amount of SWS, the core sleep is now placed at the heart of SWS peak, ideally starting between 9 and 10 PM. Because the core sleep is much shorter than that of E3, the extra nap will be added to the schedule to balance the long wake gap between the end of the core and the nap around sunrise hours. In a way, E4 is basically DC3 without the second core, as DC3's second core is also placed around the same time as E4's first nap. The overall schedule looks to be equidistant, and there is a longer wake gap from the last nap of the day to the core. There is approximately 4 hours of wake gap between each nap, which ideally fits into the BRAC concept when scheduling (~4h rhythm). After all the naps have been taken, it supposedly becomes easier to stay awake in the afternoon and evening hours, hence the longer wake gap. The naps also take advantage of the common circadian spots for sleep - the first two are during graveyard hours, which coincide with monophasic sleep time, while the third nap resembles a nap taken on a biphasic schedule (circadian nadir at noon), and the last nap is around ~4-5 PM, when core body temperature reaches the maximum value, which is suitable for short sleep durations (to ease waking up).
The sleep cycle during E4 core compresses potentially to as short as 60 minutes, which seems to be caused by an extremely short core and a high frequency of naps. That means its core duration is actually one and a half cycles, risking mid-cycle SWS wakes until the brain adapts by placing light sleep at the trained wake time.
Adaptation to E4 is severely more difficult than to E3, because the removal of 1 core cycle makes it impossible for all SWS baseline to be protected. Even if it is (because of lower requirements), REM sleep becomes troubled because there is limited space in the core that would provide REM sleep, and the naps do not guarantee REM, or not consistently (especially naps after ~3-4 PM). Because it is not possible for an average vital sleep baseline (~90m REM and ~90m SWS) to be sustained on this schedule, these individuals will incur chronic sleep deprivation on this schedule.
Mostly because of E4's incredible difficulty, adaptations are very rare up to date, even though there is a minor amount of success. Though it is possible to transition to E4 as a gradual adaptation from E3, so far this has reported no success rate. It is likely that adaptation to E3 is already overbearing at that point, and another immediate transition to E4, which is below the minimum sleep threshold, is the limitation that most people cannot get to. Cold turkey method, however, accounts for all the successful adaptations (including the extended version). E4 is also an option to fall back on if Uberman fails, but so far no one has been able to pull this off, either.
When adaptation first begins, as usual sleepers are expected to not fall asleep in some naps, or all of the naps. However, as sleep debt quickly accumulates, it will be easy to do so, and Stage 3 is expected to arrive in a matter of days. Since no vital sleep baseline is protected, sleep deprivation will continually build up rather than getting relieved by the humble amount of total sleep on the schedule. An extreme adaptation is then required to reach the equilibrium of SWS and REM in all sleep blocks to be able to adapt. As with Uberman, any oversleeps greater than a rare 10m or so will be devastating to the adaptation process that requires both strict circadian entrainment and severe homeostatic pressure.
Despite its unpopularity compared to E3 and Uberman, there has been limited success with E4 over the years. Below are the variants that have been succeeded.
Up to date there has only been a success or two with this scheduling. The concepts look similar to the default version, except for the nap placement. There is a slightly longer wake gap between the sunrise nap and the noon nap, which allows for more wake time in the morning to maintain an uninterrupted and longer work flow. The last nap is moved to after regular work/school hours (which is usually around 5 PM). Due to the low total sleep and a shortened core, it is necessary to schedule the naps somewhat close together, as one nap will less capability of sustaining wakefulness. A 20m nap on E4 will not fuel performance as long as a 20m nap on E3 or E2 for that reason. Thus, it is not advisable to have more than ~5h wake gap between any naps (barring the last nap's wake gap) on regular E4 scheduling
One polyphasic sleeper from the Discord community has successfully adapted to this variant. This E4 is basically E3 (3.5h core variant) with an extra nap. The extension of the core sleep creates a lot more space for SWS and REM, and alleviates the pressure on the naps. Same as the regular version, 2 naps are moved to night hours before the day starts, leaving only 2 daytime naps.
The extension of the core sleep and the high frequency of nighttime naps helps boost alertness more effectively during the worrisome graveyard hours, a common issue on almost, if not all, Everyman adaptations. Despite an overwhelming adaptation, E4-extended may be somewhat milder to adapt to than E3, given the frequency of sleep and the combined efforts of the core and the naps to protect the baseline of vital sleep stages. With a reasonable amount of sleep from the extension, E4-extended may be sustained long-term if the lifestyle allows for the clunky scheduling.
With 5 sleep blocks per day, even though E5 offers an amazing amount of sleep reduction, sleeping 5 times per day may be a concept that creates boredom and lack of motivation to micromanage that many sleep blocks. This is one of the reasons E4, whether extended or not, is far from being as popular and well-known as E3.
Aside from the inflexibility after adaptation, virtually no exercise and/or consuming alcoholic beverages or drinks for an average sleeper, E4 actually has some saving graces from the more awkward E5, and may be worth an attempt.
- First, it is less extreme than Uberman, and the extended variant shows that it remains a viable option for long-term sustenance. Those who vacillate between Uberman's extreme adaptation and E3 (whose sleep reduction does not suffice) can consider E4. The higher frequency of naps (at least on extended version) can help prevent crashes and experienced sleepers can take advantage of their strong napping skills to learn to fall asleep and achieve SOREM in the nap(s) in the early adaptation stage.
- Second, its multiple naps teaches napping skills quickly, as sleep pressure racks up fast on E4. This is also an advantage that can push adaptation to a later stage faster than on schedules like E1, as there are multiple opportunities per day to learn to fall asleep and wake up in just 20 minutes. For emergency circumstances that require less sleep for a brief period of time (e.g, ~1 week to ~1 month), the short naps and the core can act as temporary tanks to give some rest rather than pulling all-nighters. Individuals who can take advantage of E4 can be new parents, students on borrowed time or have been used to sleep deprivation to power through some amount of days before recovering. The naps only last for 20m, and coupled with E4's total sleep, it can feel like "no sleep" or only "1.5h sleep" for the whole day. It is necessary to ensure that all waking hours are optimized for these urgent activities. Personal motivation and adrenaline will play a massive role to ensure that productivity can be sustained during these burst periods.
- Lastly, E4's scheduling structure gives it the same vantage points as schedules with 2 daytime naps (e.g, DC2, E3). At face values, scheduling 2 naps during the day can be problematic for a lot of people, but it can be done with the proper scheduling. This can be seen in the noon nap of E4, which can be scheduled during a lunch break, and the fourth nap can be scheduled after work. Breakfast can be done after the second nap, lunch can be scheduled after the noon nap, and dinner after the last nap, or ~2.5-3h before the core. Thus, it can fit into even mainstream 9-to-5 jobs, as long as napping is permitted and thoroughly discussed among parties.
- The extended version allows quite some room for flexibility of the naps after adaptation, especially the last nap or two. With many naps, it is also more tolerable to skip a nap (if required) during adaptation to this variant without punishing downsides like on the regular version. The more opportunities with an extra nap compared to E3 can provide more recovery from stress or any other additional minor productivity lapses. For instance, an extra period of tiredness can be buried cleanly by the extra nap from E4 that is not present on E3.
- E4-extended is also a possible candidate to adapt to SEVAMAYL, a highly enhanced Everyman prototype, as there has been one SEVAMAYL sleeper with a 3.5h core sleep (however he did not transition from E4-extended, but did SEVAMAYL cold turkey by abusing his low sleep requirements). This would theoretically allow for the alternation between 3, 4 and 5 naps from day to day, and E4-extended can help form flexible napping habits. It is worth noting that no one has done this transition step to SEVAMAYL. The scheduling of naps also separates each day into "shorter days", which makes a day feel very long.
However, even though E4-extended is a hospitable variant, more data is needed on this variant to determine its other niches or downsides. For the default version, reported successful adapters did not stay on it for more than a couple months (~2-3 months), mostly from insomniac or even chronically sleep deprived individuals due to certain living conditions that require less sleep (which creates an adaptation to less monophasic sleep), or certain health conditions that heavily disrupt the structure of their monophasic pattern. More adaptation samples are required to determine if E4 is overall a viable long-term schedule for individuals who reportedly can complete the adaptation phase.