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EXOTEC Posts: 3,327
7/19/13 12:18 P

I spent most of my life working nights. I can't seem to break myself of the schedule even now. But it was okay, because I learned that eating isn't about an hour, or a type of food for a particular hour (within limits, of course!). Noon was my usual wake-up hour, too. Most of the time that was "breakfast," but plenty of times I'd wake up hungrier for more substantial food, and simply had leftovers or made myself a meal the average person wouldn't define as "breakfast." That's fine. Eat what your body tells you it needs, and don't get focused on what hour it is.

Since your morning routine seems a bit hectic, you might try one of the protein drinks for breakfast. I don't know what dietary plan you're on; I use Atkins shakes, but that's low-carb. I used to use the prepackaged protein drinks. I also occasionally use the whey protein powder mixed up in coconut or almond milk. Those are a quick and easy and fairly nutritious alternative to simply skipping a meal if you're pressed for time.

I'd try to preplan some kind of take-along meal for your break time. I love cold leftover meats, hard-boiled eggs, meat salads, a bit of fruit (don't get carried away!), a little green salad... the only thing I'll say about green salads alone is that while they will fill you initially, they won't stick with you unless you top them with things like mentioned above. Put some olives in there. I love the pre-cooked shrimp; I very recently happened across some langostinos, which are the size of cocktail shrimp, but taste just like lobster. Fabulous take-along finger food! Unfortunately, this middle-day meal should be larger than your late night meal... but you'll just have to fiddle around with it to see what you can get to work.

Several suggestions have been made on a variety of threads here about slow cookers. They're excellent alternatives to "quick-meals". Start something up in the morning, and you have dinner when you get home. If you don't want a big meal like that in the evening, most things out of a slow cooker are even better after they've been refrigerated and portioned out afterwards for lunch - maybe something to take with you at lunchtime. Chili is great like that, and all it takes is a little microwaving, which most school break rooms have.

Just try to resist the "snack meals." Yes, simple to fill up on, but not very nutritious, and isn't likely to help you in your aim for better health.

If you have any time you can allot on days off from school, try cooking several dinner-sized meals. A roast, some chicken, what you like. Then portion them out right away and freeze the portions so you can just grab one to take with you during the week, or for quick meals when you come home if you haven't fired up the slow cooker that day.

And don't forget: the hour means nothing. I *love* breakfast at "dinnertime." Work around it. You'll find your balance!

RUSSELL_40 Posts: 16,826
7/19/13 11:32 A

So you have meal # 1 after exercise, and a meal at 5 p.m., so why not have a meal when you get home? Say midnight. What you don't want is to eat 2 big meals, or also go long periods without food. If you aren't eating till noon, then a midnight meal would still leave you with 12 hours to go before breaking your fast ( breakfast ).

Once again, the timing of your meals has no effect on weight loss. I sometimes eat at 2 a.m., but most days it is 8 a.m., 3 p.m., and 10 p.m., with a 10 hour fast. If I ate breakfast at noon, I would just eat lunch at 7, and dinner at 2 a.m. Of course, your class schedules might move that around a bit, but I would eat as early as possible, have lunch at the 5 p.m. break, and have dinner at the end of the day. You still burn the same amount of calories. Late night eating isn't a problem.

The problem with most late night eating is it is usually 4th meal, and the entire meal is extra calories. This is not the case with you. You are just on a different schedule.

Edited by: RUSSELL_40 at: 7/19/2013 (11:34)
MISS_AJA SparkPoints: (9,130)
Fitness Minutes: (8,360)
Posts: 36
7/19/13 11:17 A

Well when I wake up, I usually go to my exercise routine, then I would have "lunch". Because I'm a student, my class schedule is always from the afternoon through night time. During those periods I only have some one hour gap (around 5), which is the only perfect time to have dinner unless I want to wait until 10 to have dinner. Sometimes during class time my instructor would give a 10 min break which gives me enough time to snack on something, but sometimes they don't so I miss out on snacking.

When I come back from my late night class, and doing h.w/studying, that's when I snack. However it's only a light snack, and I'm really trying to break away from my midnight snack habit. Although during the weekends, I'm eating much more meals than I do during the weekdays. Basically, I don't think it's a good balance.

RUSSELL_40 Posts: 16,826
7/19/13 7:58 A

I used to manage a pizzeria and got off work at 1:30 a.m., and would get to sleep at 4 a.m. I would crawl out of bed at noon,have breakfast, have lunch before working at 5, and eat dinner around 11 p.m. after the rush was over.

Waking up at 11 isn't a sign that one isn't working. The 9-5 jobs just aren't available anymore. Lots of adults are working the night shift. If someone isn't working, the idea that that is a wonderful thing for them isn't a given either. Maybe they are disabled, or unable to find employment.

To the OP: Are you not eating at 11? Or are you just eating your meals on a different schedule. If you aren't eating "breakfast" at all, and then just eating lunch and dinner, making up breakfast this way is a bad idea. Extra calories at one sitting just spike blood sugars, and we store the excess as fat. Yes, you will burn off that fat in the many hours you DON'T eat, but spiking your blood sugars isn't as healthy as eating smaller, more numerous meals, and keeping them steady. Plus, once you ate your 1,XXX calories at 2 sittings, you are more likely to have a snack, or have a few extra calories elsewhere, since it is 16 hours till your next meal. Now , anything eaten is over your plan.

Hopefully you are still eating all your meals, just not on a normal schedule. That is not a problem. I lost almost 100 lbs while doing it this way. Just stay in your ranges.

NIRERIN Posts: 14,297
7/18/13 9:02 P

the point of breakfast is to break your fast. so basically what that means is to try eating within an hour or two of getting up. if you're already doing that [eating within an hour or two of waking up but calling it lunch because of the time you're eating] then you are "eating breakfast" already.

MISS_AJA SparkPoints: (9,130)
Fitness Minutes: (8,360)
Posts: 36
7/18/13 8:58 P

I never thought about that before, but thank you everyone! I will try it out! emoticon

LDHAWKE SparkPoints: (19,069)
Fitness Minutes: (1,818)
Posts: 771
7/18/13 6:19 P

I don't know if you work but it sounds like you don't. (I wish I had that luxury.) I don't know when you go to bed but I will offer this advice.

There is no designated time for when you should eat breakfast, lunch and dinner. It is perfectly fine to switch the meals.

NSMANN Posts: 981
7/18/13 6:11 P

I have this same problem. I have to remind myself to eat several 200-300 calorie meals throughout the day to make sure I am keeping up with my calorie targets for the day. Snacking or grazing on healthy stuff may help.

SUNSHINE6442 Posts: 2,314
7/18/13 4:55 P

If you wake up and start your day at 11am that is your breakfast time. Have lunch later in the day around 3PM and dinner after 7PM. Hope that sounds good.

ICEDEMETER Posts: 1,332
7/18/13 4:52 P

I'm assuming that you're getting up at 11 because you're going to bed around 3, and that you are awake about the same amount of time as most of us. If that's correct, then it's simply a matter of shifting your ideas around to seeing your first meal of the day as breakfast, and scheduling your other meals and snacks at appropriate times throughout your usual waking hours.

Your body doesn't care what time you eat, or what types of meals (as in - typical "breakfast") foods you have at what time - its only concern is that it gets the nutrition that it needs to function.

If it works for you to get up and have a typical lunch, then a typical dinner, and then a "late lunch" later in the evening, then go for it! Only you can figure out the schedule and foods that work best for you.

MISS_AJA SparkPoints: (9,130)
Fitness Minutes: (8,360)
Posts: 36
7/18/13 4:35 P

I rarely have breakfast (I know shame on me), but the reason is I'm always waking up so late. By the the time I wake up it would always be around 11, which is lunch time. I've tried so much in the past to wake up early just because, but it's never a success. Is there for people, such as myself can find a way to make room for breakfast, or to make it up somehow?

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