Working nights instead of days can take a toll on your physical health as it throws your regular sleep, diet and exercise patterns off gear. But by chalking out a proper diet and exercise plan, there are ways to ensure you still stay fit.

If you are pulling all-nighters, make sure you follow these six rules:

Sleep and eat well before the shift

If your shift starts at 6 pm, ensure you get 7-8 hours of solid and uninterrupted sleep during the day. Once you wake up, go outside, take a walk and soak in in the sun. The sun will act as a cue to your biological clock, informing that it is time to be alert.

Relax after a hard night’s work

It’s the same as unwinding after a hard day’s work. Come home, relax for a while and then go to sleep. When relaxing before naps, avoid time-consuming activities. Choose things that you can put down easily when the time comes to go to sleep. For instance, listen to some soft music.

Cut the caffeine consumption and carbonated drinks

To stay awake, night shift workers often guzzle several cups of coffee. But that habit is both unhealthy and addictive. It is better to take a break, change activities, exercise, get fresh air and find a task that demands your attention, and forces you to stay alert. Sweetened, carbonated drinks may seem the best choice when your energy levels are down, but in the long run, they cause great damage.

Reduce your carb intake

Carbs are a go-to when you get the late night munchies, but they don’t just make you fat – they also make you sleepy. Instead, increase your protein intake to stay alert. Eggs, paneer, peanut butter and tofu help increase alertness and focus.

Make time to exercise

Make sure you hit the gym on at least four days in a week. Remember to have a small snack before exercising. Carbs like fruits, a protein bar, biscuit will boost your body’s supply of glycogen and prevent you from feeling drained during a workout. If you don’t want to gym, buy a pedometer and set a target for how many steps you need to take daily to stay fit and make sure you meet it. On weekends, instead of lazing at home, plan an outdoor activity like trekking, cycling, swimming and even some racquet sport.

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Written by Suressh Kumar

Suressh Kumar

Money can’t buy you a good metabolism – it’s something you have to work towards by adapting a healthy lifestyle and incorporating a fitness regiment into your daily routine, says Suressh Kumar. A fitness trainer certified by Karnataka Fitness Academy, Fit India and ACE, Surressh specialises in marathon and sports performance training as well. His fondness for fitness saw him veering away from a career in computers, to become a full-time trainer. He loves that people see him as a role model and calls his fitness routine life-changing, an experience he’d like users of HealthifyMe to undergo too. Using benchmarks like lifestyle, cardio-endurance, muscle strength, flexibility and eating habits to determine how healthy you are, Suressh believes his fitness tips will help boost stamina and improve build. After he sets six month goals in keeping with your age, watch your workout work wonders!

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