Life, in general, can make it hard to keep fit. But when you have a job with irregular work hours, it can make it even more difficult. If you have unpredictable shifts, you work nights, or you’re on rotating shifts, it makes regular exercise and even eating right hard to manage. However, it doesn’t have to stop you from keeping fit. Fitting in healthy choices around your work can take a bit more planning, and sometimes making decisions on late notice, but you can do it. There are several steps that you can take to keep up a healthy lifestyle even when you’re not working a regular nine-to-five.
Here are some of the things you can do to stay fit when you don’t have a set working schedule.
When you have irregular working hours and you sometimes work nights or early mornings, sleep is something that you need to prioritize. It’s essential to get enough sleep to be healthy and have enough energy for work and your personal life. Good sleep and keeping fit can go hand in hand. Regular workouts help to tire you out and ensure you’re not too wound up when it’s time to go to bed. Another way to ensure you get enough sleep, even when switching between day and night shifts, is to have a wind-down routine to help you relax before it’s time for bed.
Join a 24-Hour Gym
If you like to work out in a gym, it can be tricky when your working hours aren’t normal. There are both advantages and disadvantages of a rotating shift, and one advantage can be that you’re able to earn more during evening or night shifts. That means you might be more inclined to join a gym, but you also need to find one with hours that fit your schedule. Fortunately, there are more 24-hour gyms than ever. If there are any local to you, it can be a great way to ensure you always have somewhere to work out. You will usually have a key card, pass, or code that allows you to come and go as you please.
Ditch the Gym
Not everyone needs a gym to work out, and it can be much more convenient if you don’t need one. There are other ways to exercise, including working out at home and getting out and about for some fresh air. You can go for runs, walks, or bike rides, which can take you just about anywhere. You could just go around your neighborhood to get your daily exercise. Having exercise equipment at home or working out without any equipment makes it possible to keep fit without a gym. Other activities are available too, with some flexible options for classes and groups that you can join.
Schedule Your Exercise
Although your shifts might not be completely predictable, you usually do know about them in advance – whether by a few days, a week, or more. Once you know when you’re working, you can decide what to do with the rest of your time. Scheduling workouts into your days will help to ensure you get your exercise. You might have other things to do, from family and friend commitments to running errands, but scheduling your exercise will help you to fit everything into the time that you have available.
Maintain a Healthy Diet
Eating healthily can also be hard when you work irregular hours. You don’t always have the time to cook and it can feel weird to have your meals at irregular times. But you don’t have to rely on quick, unhealthy food to help you survive. One of the things that can really help if you want to eat healthy meals is meal prepping. When you prepare your food in batches in advance, it’s there when you need it. If you have the money, you can even order healthy meals.
Try a Personal Trainer
You might think that if you don’t work regular hours, working with a personal trainer is out of the question. However, plenty of personal trainers are super flexible and can fit sessions around your schedule. If you want to hire a personal trainer, just explain to them that you need to be flexible with when you work out. They can schedule sessions at convenient times, give you workouts to do at home and maybe even provide online training sessions for you to help you save time.
Irregular work hours shouldn’t stop you from keeping fit. You can still fit healthy choices into your life!