Boys Among Men: How the Prep-to-Pro Generation Redefined the NBA and Sparked a Basketball Revolution - Book Review
Boys Among Men: How the Prep-to-Pro Generation Redefined the NBA and Sparked a Basketball Revolution
By: Jonathan Abrams
Life Skills: 2 out of 5
Entertaining: 5 out of 5
I interviewed Abrams for my podcast. The episode will be out in a few weeks, but I couldn’t wait to get this review out.
Boys Among Men chronicles the generation of NBA talent that jumped directly from high school to the NBA. With balance and grace, Abrams balances the successes of LeBron, Kobe and Garnett with the shortcomings of Leon Smith and Kwame Brown.
The years of research and interviews that went into this book are apparent in the great anecdotes and multiple perspectives brought to each chapter. I tore through the 300 pages in two flights.
Who should read this; Basketball fans, high school and college athletes, and .
Major lesson learned; Sending young men directly from high school to the NBA was not as disastrous as many made it out to be.
Interesting tidbit; Both Kevin Garnett and Kobe Bryant got passed over for far inferior players because they had never been to college.
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I have accepted that I am extremely competitive. On a recent vacation, I worked myself into a frenzy over losing a game of rummy 500 and tried to kick a soccer ball through a glass door. I have worked on being more mindful, but I have no desire to eliminate it entirely. It is my heightened sense of competitiveness that has fueled my pursuit of mastery in multiple disciplines and eternal search for any advantage I can find. This quirk peaked upon reading an article about Kobe Bryant.
A specific line stuck with me and brought me back to the article an hour later. “Most people don’t realize he is on a polyphasic sleep schedule, just a part of his total body optimization. He does dual core 2x naps.” Upon further research, I found that he sleeps for two 2-hour stretches at night and takes two short naps during the day. This is called a Dual Core 2 sleep schedule. The Dual Core refers to the two extended sleeping periods Kobe has during the night. The 2 represents the number of 20 min naps he takes during the day. More research revealed that you can modify the length of your two core sleeping periods to give you up to 7 hours, or as low as 4 hours, of primary, recovery-focused sleep.
Polyphasic sleeping acolytes claim that monophasic sleeping (one 7-9 hour period of sleep) is an unnatural byproduct of the Industrial Revolution. Essentially, we have been raised to believe we need “a good eight hours” because that is the only reasonable options for adults with a 9-5 job and any other responsibilities. Returning to the behaviors of our prehistoric ancestors is similar to the argument against sitting for extended periods, for the paleo diet, and for non-monogamous relationships. That was enough to convince me to give it a shot. Here is the plan for modifying my sleep schedule from monophasic to polyphasic sleep schedule.
Goal; To limit my daily sleep to no more than 6.5 hours per night and increase my daily productivity. Achieve this without sacrificing performance (writing and physical activities).
Other behavior modifications to consider;
Be sure to check back in 3 weeks from today to read about my progress. I will be lifting and running regularly and eating as healthy as possible. More experiments are also in the works for the future, let me know if you think there is something I should try.
P.S. - If I fail, at least I know I wasn’t alone. Other bloggers have tried and failed to successfully convert to a polyphasic sleep schedule and still took away some valuable information.
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