A great challenge is always involved with those who desire to be better shape-wise but on odd hours of working. Below are the specific strategies we use on one-one coaching program with our night shift clients. Here, you have a plan to reach you to your goals of fitness. Although, each situation can be unique but we as well have certain universal principles that can get you started on a healthier living even on an impossible work life.
- 1. Losing weight on a night shift made possible
The 80-90% Success of Health (Diet Ratio): This rationale maintains that 80 to 90% of succeeding or failing a healthy lifestyle is all on diet. Dieting may be either a curse or a blessing, meaning that you don’t need to worry if you ever miss a workout for that night shift reason. Basically, it may mean you have to take care of yourself while at work. Simply, when you take too much calories, you are not likely to lose weight. On your night shifts therefore you need to eat less calories on a better plan that may not drive you crazy.
Any diet can help you achieve your goal provided food is accessible and the norms of eating to achieve the goal is not a problem. However you know yourself better. We as well have a plan for this, it isn’t a problem. But you need to be a better cook to prepare your own meal.
Don’t say you don’t have time to prepare food. This is like saying you cannot prepare food before time as your priority – a wrong notion!
With an overnight shift works, you need to strategize keenly on how to prepare your own food brought home. Try these three easy steps that will feed you on your night shift:
- Purchase a bunch of $1 steam fresh bags of frozen veggies and place them in the workplace’s fridge.
- On your off or on a Sunday Night, purchase a bunch of chicken breast and cook all of them in an oven. Then pack them separately on bags or containers and store them in the refrigerator.
- If you need more carbs in your diet, purchase some sweet potatoes. You can heat one in the microwave and make it ready on your plate.
With these steps, you have achieved a well-balanced meal. Is that boring? Try this;
- Chop up the chicken and place it in a salad plate with any other thing you may prefer. Keep them in your fridge.
- Make stir fry and put some in the fridge’s containers. On your break, heat them up.
- You can ‘google chicken paleo marinade’ meal and advance your chicken preparation skills.
This preparation requires effort but it does work. It finds you a rhythm to go with but again, it narrows you down to excuses and priorities. May be you are using ‘I don’t have time’ as an excuse to continuously eat poorly and feel sorry for who you are. This is our world’s smallest violin am playing for you and it may be sounding terrible for you at this time.
Is it that your job stops you from eating healthily? May be it is an excuse to use when one goes to the vending machine or to Taco Bell.
Point to remember: You alone believe in your excuses. You are able to do this. Just let ‘perfect’ not to be the ‘good’s’ enemy.
- 2. How to avoid weight gain while on night shifts
Irrespective of the work you handle on the night shift, you are basically going to deal with exhaustion, lack of time, hunger and boredom. Where do you turn to when you are faced with these four elements? Caffeine? No. We don’t suggest this as an approach to deal with these. Essentially, don’t be caught in this unhealthy calorie trap. So, what is the meal we ought to eat and avoid when we are on night shifts?
- Avoid empty liquid calories. Drinks like soda, lattes, caffeine, and soda are rich in calories and over 50 grams of sugar. The extra calories contribute much to the body’s waistline. Therefore, before venturing onto a drink, better read the label or research about that coke, coffee Coolata or the six Monster drinks.
- Get your caffeine from a healthy source. These include green tea, black coffee or low calorie drinks such as Monster Zero Carb.
Note: Avoid nutritional empty drinks but calorie-full or sugar-full.
- Which Drink is better for the Night shift?
Smoothies have proved to be better drinks with incredible health during night shifts. Have your smoothie recipe for night-long shift as below:
- Frozen fruit
- A cup of unsweetened coconut milk, almond milk and/or cold water
- A protein scoop
- Few ice cubes to thicken up the smoothie
- Organic frozen spinach (though optional but gives a serving of vegetables)
If you can’t take with you a blender to work, you can use a shaker bottle and prepare your smoothie within 60 seconds.
Which foods to avoid on a night shift?
Empty food calories: Snacking is one of the weird calorie eating habit. Healthy snacks like apple slices with almond butter can be rich in calorie while they are easily over-consumed.
If you are one struggling with overeating habit, monitor your snacking at the night shift. Examine what is making you to overeat. Is it boredom? Not paying attention? Have you trained your body to be eating every 5 seconds? If the reason to overeating is due to these then try;
- No eating and watching TV shows
- No eating and surfing the internet
- No eating and any other idling habit
These are rules to tame your accidental or absentminded calories intake.
Finally, take active role to make your health better. They say, don’t sacrifice your real bigger want for your immediate want. For example, the candy bar you may want to take to satisfy you at the moment may not satisfy for a better long-term. And neither can the chips do so. Stand up for yourself and make better healthier choices.
- 4. The Night Shift Workout Routines
Exercise makes up a 10-20% equation. Strength training gives as much bang for your buck and gives you a desired result. When your time is limited but want to stay healthy or may be lose weight, then walking and strength taking may be a new adaptation for you. You may not need to attend gym sessions but you can work out at home just before you begin your night shift. Try a simple workout such as Beginner Bodyweight Circuit.
With one working on few days on and few days off they should try a routine involving really intense strength building on your first day of off from work and on your last day of off. Try also spreading your workouts throughout your long shifts. For example:
- Dumbbell rows with your desk and briefcase/backpack
- Do squats in the supply closet.
- Walking up the stairs on your break.
- Pull-ups on the bus stop overhang waiting to go to work?
- Push-ups and planks in your cubicle.
All these add up your value. Strength training are vital but there is another one too vital.
- 5. Staying Active on a Night Shift
Staying active helps to keep mind at work. If you can, stand up at your desk and mix it with sitting. You can go for a walk around the office. Staying active will help you to:
- Add up in push-up, squats and making an extra mile
- Engage the mind making to make active
- Exercise and make you smarter and very alert at work
24/7 Prioritization of a healthy living (Summary)
It is about taking an active role in bettering your health at all times. First, don’t excuse your health on the job, know that everything you attempt always adds up and plan out your day effectively.