Need advice from my fellow 40 hour night shift nurse


Hello fellow 40 hour night shift nurses !

Been working as a nurse for around 7 months now night shift 40 hours. Been struggling with finding a time to go to the gym which was one of my favorite things to do while in school, really need some advice !

Sour Lemon

5,016 Posts

Has 13 years experience.

If you want to go, you'll make it a priority and find the time. Personally, I would rather eat nachos.

Specializes in Cardio-Pulmonary; Med-Surg; Private Duty. Has 5 years experience.

If you worked days, when would you go? Before work? After work?

There's your answer.

Specializes in LTC.
If you want to go, you'll make it a priority and find the time. Personally, I would rather eat nachos.

I used to work night shifts and would sometimes get nachos at the gas station before starting my shift. I made it a priority to skip the chili beans though. :)


462 Posts

Specializes in Case manager, float pool, and more. Has 13 years experience.

When I worked nights I went before work. Showered at the gym and slipped on my scrubs. Too tired to workout after working all night. I did 8 hour shifts though. I think I would skip the gym if I worked 12's as I am pretty sure I did my 10,000 steps each shift. But that is just me, you'll have to find what works for you. Of course our gym is in the hospital I work at so not any drive time involved.

Dang it. Now I am craving nachos.

allnurses Guide

NurseCard, ADN

2 Articles; 2,847 Posts

Specializes in Med/Surge, Psych, LTC, Home Health. Has 13 years experience.

Probably best to try to go before work. It's too tempting for most people

to skip it and just go home and go to bed, after working a night shift.

Do you have a 24 hour gym nearby? Planet Fitness?

(Fitness whole plate of nachos into mah mouth!! Ba da boom!)

Has 33 years experience.

You don't have to go to a gym. Hit up Hasfit videos on You Tube. I am quite buffed for an old chick.


17 Posts


i always go the afternoon before my first night on, and sometimes the next shift (depending how I feel). If I'm on a stretch of a few nights in a row I always feel like the exercise that first shift helps me sleep. Then I try to make it to the gym on my off days. (Plus do some ab circuits at home if I can't make it). Just don't punish yourself or feel guilty when you're too pooped to make it to work out!!

Davey Do

1 Article; 10,253 Posts

Specializes in Psych (25 years), Medical (15 years). Has 44 years experience.

I was a member of gyms for over 25 years and finally got tired of it- you know changing clothes, showering afterwards etc. I tried things like working out in my scrubs, but that didn't last long.

I finally bought an elliptical and universal, already had some free weights, and now workout in my basement and it's great! I'll do workouts of 10 minutes or an hour- whatever I feel like.

Just yesterday, I did a 20 minute workout in the basement of both elliptical and weights, then did 10 miles on my mountain bike. It was 32 degrees with a good S SW wind and today I feel great!

Getting away from the gym and the programmed routine has definitely increased my workout!


38,333 Posts

I went for my neighborhood walks (occasionally hour and a half) immediately after work. Found they (and nice shower) facilitated daytime sleep.

allnurses Guide

Meriwhen, ASN, BSN, MSN, RN

4 Articles; 7,907 Posts

Specializes in Psych ICU, addictions.

I get my workouts in before work, around 7 or 8 pm (my shift starts at 11pm). I exercise at home: I have a recumbent bike, free weights, and several exercise DVDs. I used to go to the local Y, but I hated having to jockey for free equipment.

On my days off, I may keep the same schedule, or work out in the mornings. Depends on how I'm feeling that day.

Specializes in ICU.

Long time nocs, I make it a part of my weekly schedule by scheduling my three days together, going to the gym on my first day post-nap, pre-work. Then I take my rest days on work days and go on my off-days. I realized I valued my sleep more than exercise :/ Hope you find what works for you :)