Ask HN: Why do I think better while walking? | Hacker News


People seem to have this weird idea they are a head on some kind of separate body vehicle. Your head is an integral part of your body and is reliant on its systems and structures.

Walking increases blood flow to the brain and the brain relies on blood to provide all kinds of nutrients and material as well as to remove waste. Exercise is a required activity for humans and impacts brain function and digestion to name just two significant aspects. eg walking helps with passage of food through intestines. Walking is therefore not optional if you want your major organs to operate effectively in the long term.

To put this in harsher terms: if you spend 8 hours sitting without a break you are operating your brain in a sub-optimal way. This doesn't mean you can't come up with ideas at all but your brain is now operating at less than its best. You might think you're getting away with it but later in life if you keep the no-walking habit you'll have issues.

Sleep is another piece of this puzzle and people love to brag about operating on less sleep. Don't believe their hype. You probably need more and better quality sleep. Sometimes you might sleep for 15 hours especially if you've disturbed your normal sleep patterns. This is not some shameful aberration since its the body resetting from a deficit. But aim for an average of around 7-8. You likely shouldn't be averaging 10 hours since that can be a sign of illness. If you are one of the rare people who can actually operate on 5 hours then do so. Personally I have a goal of making money while I sleep so, from my perspective, sleep is a profit center not a liability. Make your waking hours more productive rather than optimizing your sleep hours down to meet some arbitrary number to be one of the cool kids.