T Nation

Not Having Time to Eat Right

I’m having difficulties finding the time to eat right. Well, better worded, I’m not sure I’m eating ENOUGH. I’m a college student that works full time doing landscaping which means I’m up at 5:30 every morning, and 2 days out of the week I’m in class from after work (5 p.m.) until 9 p.m. at night.

Often, I don’t have time to eat in between getting out of work and going to class, and I don’t eat after class until later because I go to the gym for roughly an hour 5 days (sometimes 6) a week and if I eat beforehand, when I do my cardio I’ll just puke it back up.

So to cut through the all the crap, is it better to eat after the gym (which puts it at about 10:30 at night some nights) right before I go to bed, or is it better for me to do a light snack of various vegetables and/or cottage cheese before bed and eat a much larger breakfast?

First of all congrats on working full time, going to college and going to the gym 5-6 times a week. In your case hitting the iron 3-4 times a week would be better I think since your job is physical. Your muscles grow OUT OF THE GYM. Just listen to your body would be my advice I guess. This is assuming that you train at 100% intensity of course.

Second, if I undertand correctly, you eat 2 times a day. That is crazy. You need to eat at least 5-8 times a day. Bring snacks to work and to school, do whatever it takes to eat at least 5 times a day. Eat as much as you want during breakfast.

Good luck.

There are several things wrong with your approach, but eating big before bed is not one of them. Unless you are DIETING or have already built a sizeable base of muscle mass and are now refining your physique, eating before bed should not be avoided. This also depends on your metabolism and goals, but I see several people on this forum blindly recommending everyone only eat cottage cheese and it simply makes me wonder how much progress they are actually making.

If your goal is fat loss, staying away from carbs makes sense. If you have a fast metabolism and the goal is to gain, limiting your food intake to that degree makes little sense and I am glad I didn’t do things this way.

Past that, if you wanted to eat during the day, you plan ahead and do it. You obviously don’t want to reach a goal badly enough.

Just wanted to add that it is perfectly normal that you feel sick if you eat RIGHT before the gym. I feel the same.

I drink my Meal Replacement 1 hour before working out and it is recommended to drink 1-2 hours prior.

Wait at least 1 hour.

If you make it happen you will eat even at work and that between work and school time. just pack something, fruit. lots of nuts hell a handfull is 200 k/cals, i carried bagged chicken breast to grad school etc

Phill

Time to change your methods of eating ~ Pre-Make Protein shakes, sandwiches ( I like tuna! ), trail mix, and other items instead, put them in a carry along bag. In a cooler in your trunk.

When you say not having time ~ that statement is made by people whom expect to sit down at the dinner table or some more formal type of sitting. Where as you could eat while taking a walk down a sidewalk or in your car at a light.

Just chew quickly hehe~ No one is expected to have time to eat that way, thats why the most time-efficient way is to pre-make your meals. Instead of preparing 1 shake make like 3! Store the other 2 and bring them along. Make 3-4 sandwiches instead. Tupperware is useful when you do the chicken breast/broccoli/rice deal ;p

I once attended a nightclub event with friends and a guy actually had brought his tupper ware meal 2 of them to eat on time while he was clubbing and entertaining the ladies. That is a bit hardcore for me, I’d rather do a shake before entering and a shake when exiting but … to each his own!

You can have time to eat. You just have to think of eating differently.

All I got to say is “walnuts are your friend”. Whenever I’m worried about getting enough food, I just throw them in a baggie and take em with me. You can throw down 500 calories of walnuts with ease, 1000 cals wouldn’t even be that hard. As far as protein sources, shakes are always good and canned chicken is my favorite, low-cost, easy and quick to eat (no preperation, just pop the top and eat) and a good source of protein.

[quote]GVkid wrote:
a bunch of excuses[/quote]

No one reading this board is a busy doctor, lawyer, construction worker, or business owner. Everyone who has time to eat lives a leisurely life - 9-5 every day. We all also get 8-10 hours of sleep a night.

Or not.

I’m at school now but I know what you mean because as soon as I go home for breaks I work all day landscaping. Its pretty tough to get enough nutrients during the day let alone with night classes in your classes.

Tuna packets, Nuts, Wraps, anything mobile will help. Most professors don’t mind if you eat in class and I’m sure your boss wont mind you taking a 2 min break to scarf some food down real quick. Just think it out the night before and pre pack.

Also, why are you doing cardio? Landscaping all day is more of a workout then any cardio program. A lot of times I have no energy to get a good lift in and I need to drag myself through my workout, let alone cardio.

You need to prepare in advance, then have the food ready for you to eat while your in betwen classes and between landscaping jobs.

When im crunched and looking for size my meal days may look like this.

Surge for breakfast 3 scoops ( yes a great way to get you hungry in the morning).

Metabolic Drive plus large yam and fiber supp. plus fish oil

Chicken sandwich (with sprouted flax bread, sliced advocado,tomato, wasabi mayonaise, and an apple.

shake, and Yam, and fiber plus fish oil.

2 Metabolic Drive protein bars.

Ground beef patty with red potato.

shake with fiber and berries.

Cook your chicken up on a foremen the night before,
cook your beef patties up.
microwave 5 yams.
Protein bars.
apples. nuts . fruit.
bring a shake container.

all that would take 35 min to prepare a whole days food if you gave it some thought.