On Sleep, Sunlight, Time Zones, & Longing for a Job That Isn’t 9-5

I typically sleep from about 1:00am to 8:00am. I am tired and groggy EVERY single morning. If we occupied the same physical space anytime near the waking hour, I would most likely be hateful to you, although I would be too universally bummed to act out, so it would be a subversive, internalized hatred.

Last night I was in a zone (trying, unsuccessfully, to beat some Javascript programming trickery into submission) and I didn’t go to bed until 6:00am. I woke up at 11:00am. I felt refreshed, despite getting 2 hours less sleep than I normally do.

Here’s the kicker: based on my experiences, I could have gone to sleep at 3:00am and gotten up at 8:00am (getting the same amount of sleep I got last night) but I would have been WORTHLESSLY tired when I awoke.

It seems like my sleep clock (or whatever the heck you call it) doesn’t function so much on the amount of sleep I get as much as WHERE in time those hours of sleep occur. For example, I felt more rested and aware while I was in Texas a few weeks ago, even though I was functioning on my normal schedule. I think this is due in large part to being on Central Time instead of Eastern Standard Time and therefor, in a very real way, shifting the hours I was actually asleep.

Am I crazy, or is this scientifically plausible?