Late Night Calorie Cramming

What’s the fastest healthiest way to calorie cram?

I do a lot of my workouts late at night. Lately, I’ve been hopping on the trainer at 11pm. I’ll get home at 12:30-1am and just want to brush my teeth and go to bed. But I know it’s a bad idea.
Right off the trainer I’ll usually have gummy bears and/or a carb drink and then a whey protein drink 20 min later when I get home.
I need some quick easy options. Cereal is ideal. But was out of milk so I used water… Oatmeal is runner up. At this point I feel like anything is better than nothing. Candy bars? Smoothie? Best if I don’t have to turn the stove on. What else do you do for a quick easy re-up on calories?

Missus had this issue for a while. She just had a protein shake with water and a banana.

Made up the calories over the next day.

Yeah. I’ve wondered if “making up the calories” works. Or if it’s like sleep. You’ll sleep longer the next day but can’t really replace the lack of sleep from the night before. I think that was in a TR episode.
I had 2 big lunches the other day, which was a surprise because it was very easy to put down that much food without feeling stuffed. Probably not a good sign to be that behind.
Everything I’ve read is that proper fuel and recovery has a lot to do with timing, which is to say, when you eat in relation to your workouts can make a difference.
They say your body is in a state where it can more efficiently absorb glycogen for up to 30 minutes after a workout is completed. Then give your body another 30 minutes to just digest that before you put at least 30g of protein in. Then have a proper meal.
I’m just worried that I’m missing this crucial window of opportunity to refuel if I wait until the next day.

I’ve wondered about this too! I have always opted to have a real/full meal after TR workouts no matter how late it is. Mainly because I want to ensure I properly fuel to maximize my hard work and prevent me from missing future workouts. I am also curious if this is necessary (or potentially detrimental?).

On the rare occasion I don’t cook/eat a meal after the workout, my recovery drink is a blended smoothie with flash frozen spirulina, strawberries, blueberries, banana, pea or nut milk and whey protein. This is typically enough calories & sugar to tide me over until a big breakfast 7-8 hours later.

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Not eating a candy bar. Put good fuel in your body.

I would avoid unhealthy options like candy. That’s go-slow food and terrible for your overall health. Have something good like oatmeal with berries, nut butter, banana, maple syrup or for cereal do Post Shredded Wheat.

If you are doing TR workouts you will have an estimate of the calorie burn from the app before you do it.

You can then work in some/most of those calories during the day (pre-eat), allow for your post ride shake that you down immediately after, and maybe plan to do some on bike fueling.

This way you get off the bike and you have basically covered the calorie burn from the workout and have the bonus of going into it well fueled so you can work out to your best potential.


Ice cream!!

No, I kid :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:

Agree to some extent, Coach Chad has pointed out (to me kinda makes sense) in a recent podcast that (please excuse me, my best to recall what he said!) replacing calories isn’t simple as “the amount burned”, there are two fuel sources after all, sugars and fat as fuel. So a 900cal ride doesn’t equal a 900 meal … or a food coma :sweat_smile:

If I was in a late night situation, I’d prepare a big bowl of overnight oats (or Bircher) for the week. Use some soaked oats, greens & protein powder (if you like) in a smoothie post ride. Have a big bowl ready to go in the morning to ‘top up’ your cals. Pimp it out with bananas, PB and berries or anything really! Easy to go if you’re in a rush… I eat 1litre container worth for breakfasts haha​:sweat_smile::ok_hand: but that’s after super early AM high volume workouts.
After all you need to sleep well and not slow down recovery by digesting a big meal before bed.

this is fun. I wish I had this problem, cause I love eating late night. Try:

  • Protien drink with cup of frozen yougurt with a healthy sprinkle of granola. Keep separate or enjoy as a float.

  • cup of Greek yougurt with berries, (frozen berries can be microwaved for 1 min) then stir and enjoy.

  • Make a few peanut butter, banana, honey sandwiches. Store in fridge and consume as needed.

  • Frozen Waffles with almond butter ( I like the EGGO Belgium Vanilla, as it has only 6 grams of sugar).

  • IPA and salted Almonds (warning, could be habit forming)

Geez, I just made myself hungry. If you need more calories than you have an amazing metabolism and I hate you :wink:


A frozen waffles are a great idea. I always forget about food in the freezer. My issue is that I wasn’t able to make it to the grocery store for 2 weeks and had to eat out every meal, which I love doing, but my restaurant options are limited for food at 1am. Currently restocked and should be good to go for another week.

They went over this in pretty good detail in the most recent MTB Podcast jonathan does.


Sweeet! Was going to start that one today too👌

chocolate milk works for me

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One banana with a generous spoon of peanut butter!

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I have this problem as well since my apetite after a hard ride is really low. Usually just rye bread with pb and bananas or a big serving (140g/5oz raw oats) of oatmeal. But replacing 1500-2000kcal is a hard task even with good on the bike fueling.

chocolate milk is not bad choice


Sweet potato

Oatmeal with some chocolate protein powder in it

Homemade waffles, freeze them. Zero sugar.

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Please send me some of these homemade waffles. That sounds fantastic.

I still love this topic. It’s not helping me get to my race weight.

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My daughter knows the recipe, no need to get the book out anymore - but I don’t remember it. It’s a buttermilk base, but we just use milk with a spoonful of vinegar instead. Eggs, flour, baking powder, oil. That’s it I think.

A home without a waffle maker is not quite a home.


I’m trying to find what the best approach is to late-night post workout nutrition, lately I haven’t be able to get my workouts in until 10 or 11pm after work and dealing with the kids.

I’m not really big on sleeping low and I want to make sure I have fuel to help recover. Usually I just end up eating my dinner late. Try to stay up a little bit and go to bed.