Weight gain on NIGHT shift!!!

  1. I am so mad. Since I started my new job in OB, working 6p-6a I have gained (and this is not a lie) about 20 pounds in one month.

    I eat when I wake up: because I need a lift!
    I eat when I get to work: because I need a lift!
    I eat during work: because everyone else is and it is there!!!
    I eat around 3 a.m. because I need a quick lift and Snickers really satisfies!
    I eat on the way home: because I am "hungry" and bored on the drive home.
    I eat when I get home, because I am going to sleep and carbs really help!
    I eat in my dreams because I am a cow!!!!

    Okay, so you are thinking~"Wow! And she only gained 20 pounds?!!!"

    Oh yeah, and in another month it will be 40 pounds if I keep this up!!!!! Snacking seems to be a way of life at work, fast snacking on the go, no time for real meals or heating up a Lean Cuisine!

    HELP!!! Anyone else ever have this happen when they started nights......and are still alive to tell about it!

    My regular clothes do not fit!!! thank God for scrubs, huh?

  2. Visit jaxnRN profile page

    About jaxnRN

    Joined: Jan '03; Posts: 92; Likes: 4
    OB Labor & Delivery RN/Hospice/HomeHealth
    Specialty: 18 year(s) of experience in OB Labor & Delivery/PP/Nursery/Hospice


  3. by   NURS4GOD
    Oh my friend, I can relate! I did nights in November and December this past year...I gained 10 lbs. in , like, a day or something like that!! I hated it! I went back to days for 2 months, but just took a full time nights spot...we'll see what happens to me. I totally know all of those eating times that you described, though. Nothing perks you up like a Chick-fil-a chicken biscuit at 7:30 am with a big coke either! Start and end the work day with tons of calories!!
    Larger by the night,
  4. by   ThirdWorldGirl
    I actually have managed to lose weight being back on the night shift, of course I still have tons to go but what helps me is in the evening I wake up, take my vitamin with a big glass of water, then just as I'm leaving to go to work I take my Xenadrine (effedrine free) from GNC, about 9pm I eat a couple of carrot sticks or celery stalks, then about 1am I eat my lunch, most nights I brown bag it (salads, yogurt, rice cakes), then about 4am I have some more of a snack thing (fruit, special K bar), then I leave work at 7am, and come home go to bed, then start it all over again.... I do understand what you're going through though, I still have about 60 lbs to go before I'm happy with my body, and it's an everyday struggle, I'm glad I work in a hospital now, when I worked in long term care seems like everyday some family member was bringing cookies and junk foods.
  5. by   ThirdWorldGirl
    oh yeah I forgot the most important thing I'm doing now at work to help me lose weight, I take the stairs instead of the elevator.
  6. by   jaxnRN
    We have a one floor hospital layout, BUT there is access 24hours to the weight equiment and treadmills in the P.T. Department.

    Only trouble with that is getting sweaty, the time it takes to change clothes and finding the time to "get away" for my half hour.

    I literally cannot fit into my clothes from this past summer and fall and have to do SOMETHING about this before spring gets here!!
    Day shift really didn't mess with my eating habits too bad, and I felt awake enough when I got home to do my usual workout.

    Nights leaves me drained when I come home and comfort food calls my name!!!
  7. by   Nurse Ratched
    The important thing to understand is that your body signals hunger when you are tired. It's looking for an energy burst any way it can get one. The number one way to manage weight on nights is to get the same amount of sleep as you would if you were working days. There are threads on tips for night shifters to get "good" rest.

    Planning, planning, planning is the other thing. You will be slave to the vending machine if you don't pack a proper lunch for yourself. Fruits and veggies are low cal snacks that will fill you up. If you can't summon the will power to pass by fast food places when you get off (and believe me, I've been there) then leave your money, MAC card, debit and credit cards, anything that can be used to buy stuff, at home. Can't buy that Egg McMuffin with your good looks . Also saves you when the gang spontaneously decides to order pizza late night.

    I would also brush my teeth after eating - made me less likely to put something else in my mouth, not to mention waking you up a little.

    Exercising shortly after I woke up got me moving and helped avoid that nightshifters hangover.

    (((hugs))) - you can do this .
  8. by   casperbjs
    I work nights too. I think you gain from eating at such crazy times. I'm up and down when I'm suppose to be sleeping. Thinking about joining Curves for Women tomorrow. At least I'm going to check it out.
  9. by   mother/babyRN
    Me too
  10. by   Hooligan
    Oh hunny...I feel for ya! I don't work nights...but I got a non-nursing desk job right out of college and have gained about 50 pounds over the past four years. I sit on my a$$ all day and the only exercize I get during the day is walking to and from my car and then to the photocopier. I also have a crappy-a$$ commute where I sit for another hour and a half...and on Tuesdays & Thursdays I sit for an extra 2 hours in class! Mabe try drinking coffee instead of eating for a lift...that seems to help me. Also bring healthy snacks like baby carrots and grapes and such. I also found smoking kept me from eating in the car...hee hee...just kidding...I beat that nasty habit and exchanged it for eating in the car. Again...the best thing for me was to have an orange in the car for the ride home. Peeling it and eating it sort of passed the commute a little. Anyway, good luck and don't be too hard on yourself. You've won half the battle...you've identified your trouble spots...now just try to come up with ways to work on them.