T Nation

Eating a Lot Before Bed


I posted this question on CT's forum however got no answer.

I am 5'9, 180lbs and eat approx 4000 calories. gym 5 day a week, sometimes run in the morning. I am just wondering if it is a problem for excess fat gain if i eat half my calories in the evening.

For example, last night:
7h30-9h00pm: GYM
9:30: protein shake
10:30: big meal, for example last night 0.75 pound of filet mignon with veggies
1:00am: (if still awake): 1 cup of cottage cheese with 2 tbsp of PB

Would my body composition look better if removed some calories from the evening and ate them earlier in the day???


I don't think it's that critical, I try to avoid eating for an hour to ninety minutes before I retire.

I also will have something light like CC/PB.


you will have cc/pb an hour to ninety minutes before you go to bed?

yea good idea, i will try re-arranging my eating sched. right now i am having my cc/pb on my bedside table right before sleep.


It doesn't matter so long as your overall calories/macros are where you want them to be at for your goals.


I picked up this tip from both CT and Prisoner - eat the majority of your calories after training.

Yes, I realize CT is now doing the whole "have as many calories as possible peri-workout" but I'm talking about solid food meals here. In fact, here's a quote from Prisoner's blog (I hope he doesn't mind me doing this and if so, i'll remove it)

"What I do is consume 1 meal every 3 hours for the first 12 hours throughout the day at maintainance - i.e. enough protein, fat, and carbohydrates to maintain me and fuel my body but not enough to cause fat retention - keeping the metabolism up and staying hungry. This reduces or even negates my need to do cardio completely which is muscle robbing.

The last 4 meals of my day are consumed in a span of 3 hours, and can equal my caloric/ protein intake of the first four meals. The first 4 are low glycemic carbs the post workout meal is fast absorbing protein, and carbs mixed with medium absorbing same, and then the sencond third and fourth of the second buch of meals post workout slowly become less energy, and longer absorbing protein - i.e. the last meal being calcium cassinate based.

The goal is to get most of the goodies into the system when the body is most receptive to recieving them, and then slow release everything else throughout the day, which keeps the body more sensitive - the metabolism higher.

I will include a one or two higher carb days through out the week in the spirit of the carb cycling approach, and to keep my sanity, however when you think of it, more liberal eating can be done during the post workout window."

I've don't do this to the extent that he does, but I do something quite similar.


In the grand scheme of things I don't think eating before bed will be an issue. I usually always have steak or Low Carb Metabolic Drive 15 to 30 minutes before bed.


I used to blend casien with peanutbutter right before bed during my contest prep, although I believe my sleep quality has improved now that I've cut back at least an hour before hitting the sack. Although, as long as you aren't going to sleep full and bloated it shouldn't be that critical.


that's not a big meal. Which isn't a bad thing.
It's also mostly protein which is also a good thing.
Running theory on here is to eat most of your carbs early in the day and before your training and less after. Which is pretty much what your doing. Only problem I THINK not sure thats for cutting, I have to double check. If your protein shake has some carbs then your good.


When I was looking to cut my BF%, I followed the old rule of not eating past 8pm, and it definitely produced results. I can't tell you the exact science behind it (maybe someone else can?) but I have seen it supported in various literature and it really worked for me.

Also, quality of sleep can be affected when eating meals within close range of bedtime, and I know that for a fact. Your body begins to produce certain chemicals as bed time draws near, to get your body ready for sleep and the semi-starvation period that you enter, but eating shuts that process down and prevents the chemicals from being released.

*My 2 cents = don't eat past 8pm if your looking to get a good nights sleep, or to cut body fat


You lost some fat not eating past 8 pm because you were starving yourself, that little rule is good for the average fat ass, but not an aspiring bodybuilder.


No, I wasn't starving myself, I was taking in 3500 cals per day. Nice try.


Damn, you weigh 165 and can cut on 3500/day. That's impressive.


Yea, college is a great time to do it, plenty of time to lift, and the beach isn't a bad place to run.


and playing collegiate lacrosse helps you out also, maybe. Seriously though, one of the things that helped me cut the most was eliminating dairy, processed grains, and sugar (as little as possible) from my diet. Flame me as much as you want for any of those, but I dropped those and the changes were pretty satisfying.


I know this is the traditional line for dieters, which has been largely dismissed recently. However, it's interesting that Poliquin advocates a 2-hour fast before bed. So your 8pm watershed isn't too far away from the great man's advice.


Does dairy include pre/post workout whey (or casein hydrolysate) protein?


This post was flagged by the community and is temporarily hidden.


It's my understanding that you should also have carbohydrates in the meal 60-90 minutes after your PWO shake.


You are going to tell me that after 7 years training you only weigh 165 and yet you weren't starving yourself? Nice try.


Yes, I am an athlete, practicing 7 days a week. Does that confuse you?

It's hard to maintain mass when your running 7 days a week.