All-nighters: 5 Tips for Staying Fit and Healthy When you Work on a Night Shift

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Staying up all night long does not certainly leave anyone feeling revitalized, refreshed, fired up, and ready to go. Instead, it can leave them feeling like a walking dead craving for a caffeine fix.

However, for people who work on night shifts such as doctors, police officers, call center agents, and many more, working all night is part of their lives. The problem is, studies show that those people who work on night shifts have a hard time sticking to a healthy schedule, and thus can lead to weight gain and certain kinds of health issues.

Fortunately, there are tons of ways for which you can fight back and maintain a healthy lifestyle. For a little help, listed below are some of the best tips on how to stay fit when you work on night shifts.

Eat Right

Be sure to have healthy and nutritious food available in your home and at your workplace.  Working on a graveyard shift can leave you feeling grumpy and tired. As such, you will most likely grab junk foods and caffeinated beverages.

Replenish your kitchen storage room with vegetables, fruits, nuts, hummus, and even energy bars. Instead of eating white rice, try brown rice, quinoa, and rolled oats. By doing so, you will have the energy to work.

Make sure to have a regular eating schedule because eating healthy foods within a fixed time helps your body to readjust and regulate. For example, your breakfast can be at nine in the evening, lunch at four in the morning, and dinner at eight in the morning.       

Work Out

For sure, it is absurd that you will want to go to the gym after your night shift ends, but you can plan some activities around your work shift. For example, you can do quick cardio before going to work, or you can take a long walk on your rest day.   

Whenever you are free, try to exercise. Any exercise routines will do. Keep in mind that working out or exercising is not only about the physical health, it is also about the mental health. Any form of fitness activity has a powerful antidepressant reaction, even the mild ones. Hence, if you choose to work out before sleeping or if you have low energy, go for something relaxing like taking a walk or doing yoga.

Be Mindful of the Little Things

Having a work schedule that contradicts with our natural body clock can raise different challenges that can break and interrupt sleep cycle, and can lead to various health issues. For instance, people with normal work schedules can have a peaceful place to sleep at night, but for people who work all night can have a disruptive sleep because of the noises from daytime activities.

As such, you might need to use earplugs. Sharp sunlight is another problem too. Hence, consider using thick curtains or blinds to your bedroom to block the disruptive sunlight.  You can also consider using sleep masks. There are other helpful items that you can use to minimize daytime disturbances. You can check out online stores to such as Deal Wiki to scour for such items.

Avoid Drinking Coffee

Constantly drinking energy drinks or coffee can harm or damage your health, particularly for the whole duration of your shift. Get rid of all the energy drinks because they hold tons of unpleasant ingredients and sugar. Instead, go for organic and natural foods such as apple.

Try to restrict yourself from drinking coffee to one cup per shift. Make sure to drink it 4 to 5 hours before your shift ends. Caffeine tends to stay in your system for a long period, making it difficult for you to sleep once you get home.

Focus your attention on eating nutritious food and having a steady and stable sleep schedule. Of course, it can take a while to carry out these actions, but once you start eating the right foods and have a consistent sleep schedule, your body will certainly thank you for it.

Have a Good Time

Indeed, it can be difficult to fit a social life if you work in unsocial hours. However, worrying about it is not great for your psychological well-being or even your relationships. When it comes to spending time with family and friends around work hours, treasure the quality or the moment more than the quantity.

Of course, spending quality time with your family and friends demands more effort, especially if you are a night shift worker. But it’s not beyond the bounds of possibility. Make those moments fun and enjoyable.

Takeaway

Night shifts are challenging. When the rest of the world is sleeping, you are working. As such, you tend to eat unhealthy meals and find it hard to exercise. But worry not, there are practical ways on how to stay fit and healthy when you work all night long. Start it by eating right, working out, being mindful of little things, avoiding coffee, and enjoying the social life.  

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