New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady works out three times daily, goes to bed at 8:30 pm every evening, doesn’t eat sugar or tomatoes, and doesn’t drink alcohol. Me? I’m a schlub who grudgingly steps on a treadmill when my pants start getting too tight, calls it a night somewhere around 11:30 pm and absolutely decimates any pizza and beer within arm’s reach.
People like me vastly outnumber people like Brady.
So we wondered how Brady’s “athlete recovery sleepwear,” created in partnership with Under Armour, would work for non-athletes like me. The high-tech $200 pajamas help you recover faster from exercise and sleep better, Under Armor claims, thanks to bioceramic particles that are woven into the garments. Those particles, say the company, absorb infrared wavelengths emitted by the body and reflect them back as something called “far infrared.”
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I don’t have the foggiest idea what that means, but it sounds good, especially to someone who’s as insomnia prone as me. (Plus, research about the benefits of bioceramic clothing is promising.) So I spent seven nights giving Brady’s PJs a shot. Here’s what I learned.
If nothing else, the sleepwear is remarkably comfortable, though there’s no telling what material it’s actually made of because the tags and packaging lack any information. It’s silky smooth inside and out, so any fears that those bioceramic particles may be itchy can be put to rest. In fact, the pajamas were more comfortable than the loose-fitting 100% cotton nightwear I normally sleep in, so I was optimistic as I laid down for night one. But that didn’t last long. The insomnia kicked in right around 3 am, and I found myself staring at the ceiling—comfortable, perhaps, but no more rested than usual. The next night? It was more of the same.This article’s author in his Tom Brady sleepwear.
I didn’t feel any of the far infrared energy that was supposedly being reflected into my body (though, in fairness, I don’t think I was supposed to). Nor did I feel especially refreshed and my muscles felt like they do on just about any average day.
On night three, perhaps due to the overwhelming exhaustion from the previous two evenings (or, in fairness to Brady, maybe because of the sleepwear), I did manage to sleep for most of the night. But I didn’t feel especially alert in the morning. Plus, I shied away from making pancakes for my daughter for fear of spilling batter on my fancy sleepwear. (Would white flour and sugar, two more no-nos on Brady’s diet, void the warranty? Was there a warranty?)
Maybe I was doing something wrong, I figured, so I re-read the instructions. Yes, these pajamas come with instructions—or, more precisely, a card with “Tom Brady’s Keys to Better Sleep.”
Here’s the problem: They’re the same keys to a better night’s sleep you’ve read 1,000 times before: Create a nighttime routine, be consistent with bed time, keep the noise down, stay cool, and avoid contaminants in the air. Only Brady and Under Armour add one more: Wear these $200 PJs.
It was interesting that the ‘keys’ left out a big piece of advice most experts give: Avoid blue light from phones, TVs, and computer monitors just before bedtime.
I thought I’d been doing all of that, but to be sure, I followed a strict routine, kept a strict bedtime and cranked the air conditioning down to a wonderfully cool setting.
Did it help? Nope. I was up two or three times a night for the rest of the test.
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Ultimately, Tom Brady and Under Armour certainly know how to make a comfy pair of pajamas, even if they’re a bit more form fitting than I’d like with my dad bod. Do they help you sleep better? Not in my case, at least.
Are they worth $200? That’s ultimately for you to decide, but it’s a difficult argument to make when discussing the household budget with your spouse, even if you’re the world’s most dedicated Patriots fan.