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#1 Char

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Posted 04 June 2007 - 09:32 PM

Hi I work shift work mainly nights and I can have days where I am awake for 24hrs, thus I am almost eating, nibbling away for that length of time.  As you can guess not only do I have awful food hangovers but the weight is piling on and I am sure if I could loose a few kilos I might run a bit faster.  Any suggestions on good night time snacks, so I have energy the next day.  I don't eat red meat.  Thanks Char

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#2 ingrid

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Posted 05 June 2007 - 05:57 AM

spicy soups are good to fill you up (and keep awake)
Also, carrot sticks and hommus are good for snacking.
Bring a 1 litre bottle of water to work, and make it your goal to finish it that shift. You will be peeing alot, but doesn't leave much room to eat.

#3 Jason M

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Posted 05 June 2007 - 08:23 AM

As a fellow shift worker, I've found tiredness, the post nightshift headache (hangover feeling), nutrition and hydration to be big problems too.

A lack of quantity of sleep and lack of quality sleep has been demonstrated to make it harder to lose weight, and may in fact increase the their weight.

Nightshift for some reason can you dehydrated.  Make sure you keep your fluids up, this has made a big difference for myself.  Sometimes the body (especially when tired) confuses dehydration and hunger.  So deal with the dehydration and then see if you are still hungry.

Food-wise, I have the problem of my meals being interrupted often and sometimes not getting meal breaks so I take easily snackable items.  The trick for myself has been to plan ahead and prepare everything in advance.  Things I like to take include:
-Cold chicken salad
-Sandwiches
-Pre-cut fruit

I stay away from the high GI and high fat foods such as chocolate, chips, burgers and soft drinks.  I have found they don't do any favours for the waistline and while they help you feel good for a short period, the following downer for the next few hours is not worth it.

Since you are often awake for 24hour periods, I also suggest you listen to your body to a certain degree.  I don't mean just skip your runs when tired, but somedays you will find you are not capable of doing the planned session.  In these cases I ease up and try to run just for fun.  It helps in the long run.

#4 Char

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Posted 05 June 2007 - 10:54 AM

View PostJason M, on Jun 5 2007, 08:23 AM, said:

As a fellow shift worker, I've found tiredness, the post nightshift headache (hangover feeling), nutrition and hydration to be big problems too.

A lack of quantity of sleep and lack of quality sleep has been demonstrated to make it harder to lose weight, and may in fact increase the their weight.

Nightshift for some reason can you dehydrated.  Make sure you keep your fluids up, this has made a big difference for myself.  Sometimes the body (especially when tired) confuses dehydration and hunger.  So deal with the dehydration and then see if you are still hungry.

Food-wise, I have the problem of my meals being interrupted often and sometimes not getting meal breaks so I take easily snackable items.  The trick for myself has been to plan ahead and prepare everything in advance.  Things I like to take include:
-Cold chicken salad
-Sandwiches
-Pre-cut fruit

I stay away from the high GI and high fat foods such as chocolate, chips, burgers and soft drinks.  I have found they don't do any favours for the waistline and while they help you feel good for a short period, the following downer for the next few hours is not worth it.

Since you are often awake for 24hour periods, I also suggest you listen to your body to a certain degree.  I don't mean just skip your runs when tired, but somedays you will find you are not capable of doing the planned session.  In these cases I ease up and try to run just for fun.  It helps in the long run.



Thanks Ingrid and Jason.  Ahh I can identify with everything your saying Jason, yes those hangover headache and spinning head when you haven't been drinking and I crave hangover food. I have bought a pizza at 10am in the morning.  My breakfasts are shocking I can eat  a packet of tim-tams not a problem.   I have been taking cottage cheese and vegie stix but then I raid the vending machine.   So enough is enough I am sure if I can drop this weight it will help with my running.  I am 165cms; 64kgs and five years ago was 55kgs, so aiming for about 58kgs.  I have just signed up for a nutritional assessment with the dietician from Pat Carroll's site.  
Well thank once again for reading and I'll go before this turns into an essay.

#5 sunburnt

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Posted 05 June 2007 - 11:19 AM

As another shift worker, I can suggest a decent breakfast (porridge is great in these cold months) and drinking lots of water. The breakfast keeps me full for hours and the water does wonders when you 'think' you need a snack.
It is bloody difficult to keep to, especially in my job when a short sugar fix can create the vital buzz for half an hour or so.
Thanks for the other advice guys.

#6 Tesso

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Posted 05 June 2007 - 12:45 PM

I've been working shifts for much longer than I care to think about.  And I can relate to the post night shift hangover cravings, and have been known to indulge in dark chocolate after my morning toast.

What I try to do is have the same sort of brekky, lunch and dinner at roughly the same time each day.  It means taking food into work which isn't an issue as we have all the gear (microwave, toaster etc).  

Re the snacking in between its more eating for something to do than because I'm hungry.  I take in fresh fruit and stuff like almonds or low fat bikkies like crispbread or rice crackers.

We have a 'junk food bar' on the floor, its stacked with all sorts of those mini chocolate bars, chips, lollies etc.  Until recently I would succumb to the temptation every night shift.  However about six weeks agao we started a comp where you couldn't eat junk at work.  We all threw in $5 and the last one standing takes the lot (5 down, 3 to go).  Its been the best thing, being a runner the competitor in me refuses to give in.  Not that I want the $$, I just want to win  :p

#7 Litchie

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Posted 06 June 2007 - 09:36 AM

Hi Char

I'm a shift worker too. I do the 3 pm to 11 pm now but a year ago I was on 11 pm to 7 am shift.
I found that sleep is importance too, often after work I was in bed a sleep at 9 am and waking at 3 pm.
That was all so time I go for a run. I found running help with sleep. But on my bad day I did us sleeping pill as last resort of a good sleep.
As for diet I ate breakfast cereal for my work meals, It is easy to fix. And fruit.

Good luck..
Litchie

#8 Hermie

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Posted 06 June 2007 - 06:27 PM

I have some knowledge on this subject.

I am a shiftworker over 25 years.

Don't eat before you sleep.

Don't eat on the night shift.

Your body will betray you.

You will eat uncontrollably.

You will eat badly.

You will hate yourself then.

You will do bad things again and again.

You will exercise to overcome bad eating.

You will hate yourself again.

Sometimes you can control yourself.

Others not.

You will not be happy.

Sometimes you will be.

This is me.

I hope it's not you.

Shiftwork is a little difficult.

All the above is the easy bit.

Good luck!

#9 Jason M

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Posted 06 June 2007 - 07:23 PM

Quote

Don't eat before you sleep.

Don't eat on the night shift.

Won't work for me, can't go through a 14 hour nightshift without food.

#10 Brian mac

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Posted 04 July 2007 - 06:41 AM

Hi all I too shift work and one question I have is what sort of routine do you have
1 do you train b4 or after shift
2 what sort of sleep pattern do you keep
3 what sort of meals do you consume on nights and when during shift  do you eat
4 how long is your shift
5 how long have you been a shift worker
6 do you plan what meals you have prior to starting shift
7 Do you enjoy shift work
8 What type of shift pattern do you work
9 avg Kms per week
thanks in advance for responses
macca another shift worker :p

#11 Brian mac

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Posted 04 July 2007 - 06:58 AM

my answers1. I wil train after my shift with antthing up to a 30k run2 normally home by 6.30am after night shift will then hit the road for a run then spend some time with wife and kids hit the hay around 10am (try to keep the same routine as if I had done a day shift as I wouldnt go straight to be after a day shift so dont go staight to bed after a night shift)3 eat simialar to days have cereal first around 6:30-7 pm eat a normal type meal around midnight and a small snack normally toast about 4am4 keep a 12hr shift 6-65 last 14 yrs6 yes always think a head and have a good kitchen at work to cook anything7  yes like the days off8 work a 14 week cycle 9 weeks of shift work 2days 2 nights then 5 day break then 5 weeks of 8hr day maintenance cycle 6am- 3.30pm9 25-50KmI have found that by not heading straight to bed after nights then hitting the road helps me sleep better during the day after my runs will have some cereal or porridge prior to hitting the shower then just chill for a bit then get about 6 odd hours good quality sleep. hope this helps all the best maccaDont normally train b4 day shifts but will either hit the gym or go out for a short run after day shift

#12 SumDamChick

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Posted 04 July 2007 - 08:55 AM

I too have worked shifts... if you shift is a regular night shift then getting a routine should not be a problem.. sleep is important, and as someone else mentioned i would certianly not hesitate to take a sleeping pill as a last resort to make sure i would get that sleep because that is the most important thing

you will obviously need to spend time preparing all your food and taking lots of containers in with you... soups are great, lots of high protein meals, almonds, celery and carrot sticks (can munch away forever on those although i know they get a bit boring), low fat jelly, protein drinks are great too for filling the gap and settling down sweet cravings, try making a pudding out of protein mix.. make sure you get your good fats ie fish, almonds, eggs (can be microwaved in a mug and scrambled), chicken, flaxeed oil... keep tins of stuff at work such as green beans or mushrooms and flavoured tuna (can through all these in together to make a meal dressed with some flaxseed oil and some sliced black olives out of a jar that you can keep at work too)

basically the more prepared you are, the less mischief you will get up to when it comes to eating

#13 felisaffie

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Posted 04 July 2007 - 01:36 PM

View PostSumDamChick, on Jul 4 2007, 08:55 AM, said:

I too have worked shifts... if you shift is a regular night shift then getting a routine should not be a problem.. sleep is important, and as someone else mentioned i would certianly not hesitate to take a sleeping pill as a last resort to make sure i would get that sleep because that is the most important thing

you will obviously need to spend time preparing all your food and taking lots of containers in with you... soups are great, lots of high protein meals, almonds, celery and carrot sticks (can munch away forever on those although i know they get a bit boring), low fat jelly, protein drinks are great too for filling the gap and settling down sweet cravings, try making a pudding out of protein mix.. make sure you get your good fats ie fish, almonds, eggs (can be microwaved in a mug and scrambled), chicken, flaxeed oil... keep tins of stuff at work such as green beans or mushrooms and flavoured tuna (can through all these in together to make a meal dressed with some flaxseed oil and some sliced black olives out of a jar that you can keep at work too)

basically the more prepared you are, the less mischief you will get up to when it comes to eating

I support the celery and carrot stick idea it really satisy's and takes time to chew and doesn't upset you in the way sugar does. I also reccomend Gogi Berry's or Wolf Berry's. They are satisfying to chew on and are like having lolly's to chew but ten times more nutritious. Almonds and raisins and fruit are good too.

Edited by felisaffie, 04 July 2007 - 01:36 PM.


#14 chilliman

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Posted 04 July 2007 - 04:48 PM

View PostChar, on Jun 4 2007, 09:32 PM, said:

I can have days where I am awake for 24hrs

You should take up Ultra running :p

#15 Char

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Posted 06 July 2007 - 12:31 PM

View Postchilliman, on Jul 4 2007, 04:48 PM, said:

You should take up Ultra running :p

Thanks for all the tips, really motivates me to get a little organised and healthy snacking here I come.
Char

#16 Char

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Posted 08 July 2007 - 01:39 PM

Oops sorry  Brian forgot to answer your questions  here we go;
1.  I train after shift when I wake up my head is too fuzzy otherwise but maybe if things are not working at present why stick with something that is not working and even if I venture out just for 20mins then into bed.
2.  Sleep pattern usually take my youngest daughter to school then sleep from 8:00 to 12:00
3.  Meals at work really good now!!! I eat around midnight soup or vegies and protein and then again at 3:00 have cold milo with sometimes a piece of fruit bun.
4.  My shift is from 10:45pm - 7:15pm
5.  I have been a shift worker for three years
6.  I am planning ahead now my meals and fighting the vending machine when it lures me in the night. This week really good with what I am eating and noticing that I don't feel as bluk by the time I get home.
7.  I do not enjoy shift work, I hate it with a passion but it works well with family life.
8.  My shifts are mainly nights and one late on a weekend 2:30pm - 11:00pm.
Anymore kms and I have found I am exhausted for the following week and motivation at present its at a bit of a low so cold here and I am in the tropics!!!!
Have a great day everyone
Char

#17 Char

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Posted 08 July 2007 - 01:42 PM

Sorry question 9 vanished avg kms about 25 - 50 and three days at gym.
Char