Workouts that don’t leave you wired

Hi friends! How’s the day going? HOLY GIVEAWAY ENTRIES. Thank you so much to those of you who entered so far! I love reading about what makes you happy. Brings a huge smile to my face! 🙂 Happy to hear you’re excited about the prize, too. I’m stoked to put the goodie package together… and wrap up this purse. It’s so good. 

I woke up bright and early (before the sun!) for this morning’s radio interview. The great thing about radio: you can look like a hot mess zombie and NO ONE KNOWS. I was in the man cave/gym, in my pajamas, with fuzzy socks, glasses, and sleepy hair. I woke up extra early so at least my voice would be awake, thanks to some Ron Burgundy-style “how now brown cow” action. heh heh.

Detox land is still going strong, even though I’ve had coffee or tea pretty much every day. I need to live.

Coffee  1 of 1 4

We’ve gotten chicken-ed out a bit, so I’m trying to switch up our salads and side dishes so we don’t get sick of them. So far, we’ve been enjoying lots of fresh produce and salad variations, like this berry-nut salad, and this unique apple slaw thing I created. It reminds me of this glorious topping for lobster tacos.

We were walking into Trader Joe’s and they had these buckets of enormous organic Opal apples.

Apple salad  1 of 1

The sign said, “Cut up and enjoy as a slaw!”

Yes, Joe the Trader, I will do that. (<— and the marketing director said, “Dance, puppet! Dance!”)

Apple salad  1 of 1 2

I julienned the apple, and added some peeled, sliced cucumber, since the taste is fairly mild. With a drizzle of olive oil, apple cider vinegar, lemon juice, garlic powder, salt and pepper, it is an AWESOME sweet and savory slaw. I’ll definitely be making this again; it would make a great taco topping (if you’re a pork fan, that would probably fantastic on shredded pork tacos).

Apple salad  1 of 1 3

Apple salad  1 of 1 4

Workouts that don’t leave you wired:

I got a question on the blog yesterday about workouts to do before bed. It’s amazing to get in a workout at any point of the day, but sometimes if the workout is too intense, or too late, it can be even harder to wind down before going to sleep.

Runners lunge left  1 of 1

(Stretching is a great way to recover, meditate and relax before bed)

Here are some of the things I’ve noticed:

The sweatier you are, the harder it may be to crash out. The body has to work to bring itself back to resting state after a workout, which includes tasks like increasing oxygen intake, decreasing heart rate, lowering tissue temperature, hormone balancing, and replenishing fuel. If you have a super intense or sweaty workout, you may feel that your heart rate is elevated for a while after you complete your workout. This can make it harder to sleep -and I also think it’s good to walk around and be on your feet while you’re recovering, instead of going from 100 to 0- and moderate (instead of strenuous) exercise before bed may be your best bet.

-Some ideas for moderate activities before bed: yoga (the type depends on your level and personal preferences), Pilates, barre (check out any of my barre videos if you need ideas), moderate cardio (quick walk, elliptical, Stairmaster), strength training (I’d avoid intervals or metabolic circuits and stick with 3 sets of each exercise with rest in between), or take a cardio class you enjoy. 

-Know your personal cut-off time. I found that exercise before bed doesn’t affect me too much, because sometimes I teach a late class, it’s the only chance I get, and oh yeah, I could fall asleep pretty much any time, anywhere. haha.

If you get in a late workout, do you have a hard time winding down? Any fave ways to decompress before bed? Any crazy salad combos lately? 🙂

Hope you have a great night!



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  1. Tamara @ A Side Of Dessert on January 21, 2015 at 4:01 pm

    The apple slaw looks delicious and easy to whip up so I’ll definitely have to give that one a try!

    I definitely have a tough time falling asleep at night if I have an intense workout. I’m trying to do them before 6pm nowadays.

  2. Amber Schumann on January 21, 2015 at 4:16 pm

    BAHAHAA….your marketing comment was perfect. I work in a marketing department, and am VERY aware of when I’m a sucker. no shame! Dance on, sister.

  3. Linda @ TheFitty on January 21, 2015 at 4:25 pm

    I try to sneak in a workout before bed but I have a feeling that it might not be the best thing for my sleep, but the thing is other than the morning, I cant find time (or maybe the motivation) to do a workout at any other time because in the afternoons I’m usually tired.

  4. Ashley @ A Lady Goes West on January 21, 2015 at 4:30 pm

    Hi Gina, I’m about to leave to go teach BODYATTACK and then BODYPUMP and I don’t get home until after 8 p.m. By the time I shower and eat dinner, you’d think I would be ready to collapse, but it does take me a while to wind down. So true that you shouldn’t have too much intensity before bed. Great options! And that salad looks yummy! I made broccoli slaw into pasta last night for the first time and really enjoyed that! 🙂

  5. Debbie on January 21, 2015 at 4:32 pm

    If I do a cardio workout like spin or or zumba later in the evening I have to follow it up with pilates or yoga in order to wind down a little.
    That apple slaw looks delicious. I am in such a salad rut. Lately I have been buying the bags of salad mix that are on sale. Currently there are about 5 in the fridge and I am so sick of them. Time to change it up/

  6. Carly on January 21, 2015 at 4:43 pm

    i don’t often workout in the evening, however I play volleyball one night a week and games are either 630, 730, 830 or 930. Those 930 games are just killer for me … One I’m tired from being up early to start with and two i get home with a social,activity and competitive “high” and it takes me forever to wind down to sleep.
    Yoga before bed is my absolute favourite though 🙂

  7. Elle on January 21, 2015 at 5:02 pm

    I have the hardest time falling asleep after a late workout. I work nights and I often do 5ks in the morning after working and even after being up all night, I just cannot fall asleep after.

  8. Ashleigh B. on January 21, 2015 at 5:20 pm

    And I pinned to share the love!

    • Ashleigh B. on January 21, 2015 at 5:24 pm

      Ahh sorry – this comment went to the wrong post! I do have hard time winding down after a late workout. I feel like I just want to hang out and do the things I would have otherwise done earlier in the evening.

  9. Sam on January 21, 2015 at 5:22 pm

    I don’t think I’d be able to work out right before bed and still be able to go to sleep. I do think 7pm is the perfect time for an evening workout, though!

  10. RachelG on January 21, 2015 at 5:27 pm

    omg i can’t wait to make that slaw! i’ve been trying to figure out what to do with the apple cider vinegar in our cabinet. 🙂

  11. Sandra F. on January 21, 2015 at 6:00 pm

    The apple slaw looks so good! And love the idea of shredded pork tacos – would you happen to have a recipe?

  12. Sandra F. on January 21, 2015 at 6:01 pm

    PS: great job on the detox but I agree – life isn’t complete without coffee 😉

  13. Maggie on January 21, 2015 at 6:12 pm

    What a great post. I personally cannot exercise before bed, as it leaves me wide-awake. However, working out before 8 pm or so seems to be fine. Don’t feel bad about having coffee! I have one giant cup every morning, and savor every last drop. So many people cut it out, but I honestly think having a cup a day cannot be that bad. And if you heard about that Melanoma study, maybe 4 cups a day is ideal: 🙂

  14. Cheri @ Overactive Blogger on January 21, 2015 at 6:25 pm

    I used to work out before bed in grad school all the time because I really didn’t sleep that much with all the papers that I was writing. But fast-forward to a few years later, and I can’t do any working out before bed or I get really inspired to do things like clean the house or write and I don’t want to go to sleep before 1am. No good! I would like to start doing my workouts first thing in the morning instead of during my work day. I am working on it!

  15. Jasmyne @ Bootylicious Bombshell on January 21, 2015 at 6:40 pm

    I have such a hard time being wired up after working out. My “calming” workout though is to use a stretch out strap from my hamstring stretches (for some reason this works better than a belt) and to take a tennis ball and have a “roll out” session where I use the pressure of my body on the ball, on the wall or floor to release some of that muscle tension. Oh it hurts so good!

  16. Lizzie @ The Magic Tree on January 21, 2015 at 6:46 pm

    I’ve never really noticed that a late workout keeps me up. But then again, I haven’t worked out past probably 7 pm in years. I used to have grad school class that didn’t let out until 9:30 p.m., so I’d get home at 10 and would be totally wired until at least 11. That’s the same right? haha

  17. Lauren @ The Bikini Experiment on January 21, 2015 at 6:52 pm

    I can’t fall asleep if I work out too late. My personal cut off time is in the 7ish range which many people would consider pretty late in the day. I agree that circuits or workouts that are too intense are better saved for another time.

  18. melissa on January 21, 2015 at 7:29 pm

    I can work out anytime and am known with the gym staff for “closing it down” (with a few others!)

    We love salads here—lately have been into the following: romaine, grape tomatoes, hearts of palm, olives and shredded mozzarella with Italian syle vinaigrette (red wine vinegar, evoo, garlic salt). Simple but tasty and filling!

  19. kayla on January 21, 2015 at 7:48 pm

    I was just talking about this with a friend who was concerned about this.

    I typically don’t work out at night but when I do my issue is that I’m so so tired afterwards and just want to put on pjs and go to sleep

  20. Bill on January 21, 2015 at 7:55 pm

    Woah, apple slaw? Sounds great!

    I too have trouble when I work out before bed, anytime up to a couple hours before bed actually. And on the other side of that idea, my wife needs to do some stretching and pushing and pulling as she has lots of trouble with her back and is always worried that it will cramp up overnight or at least stop her from sleeping.

    I heard some sleep expert last week on Lewis Howe’s School of Greatness podcast saying that exercise, caffeine, and lots of other stuff can mess up your sleep so I am always a lot happier when I have a pick me up workout at lunch so that I can get more out of my afternoon and still able to sleep.

    Thanks for these low to no cardio workouts for the evening, I will have to pass them on to my wife!

  21. Vivian on January 21, 2015 at 8:18 pm

    I’m just like you where I can fall asleep anytime, anywhere.Its good to know I’m not the only one haha.:)

  22. Jessica on January 21, 2015 at 9:12 pm

    Love having hot coffee or tea in the morning! I think it’s nice to give our bodies a break from things every now and then, but there’s something about the hot mug of deliciousness that helps me start my day!

    And, I can pretty much fall asleep at any time. 😉

  23. Brittany @ Fun on a Budget Blog on January 22, 2015 at 4:58 am

    I definitely struggle to sleep following a later-evening workout, but that sweating fact is interesting because I am a sweaty workout person (tmi? Sorry about that). If I do yoga, that sometimes helps me sleep.

    That slaw looks amazing and easy–the marketing execs are good at what they do 😉

  24. Maria on January 22, 2015 at 5:24 am

    I’m on day 18 of the 21 Day Sugar Detox. 4 more days until I can consume wine again 🙂 I love a great yoga/stretch session before bed. Helps me quiet my mind and get to sleep a lot faster.

  25. Nicole on January 22, 2015 at 5:52 am

    Late night workouts definitely leave me wired.
    My mom would always make an orange salad that was delicious…peeled and sliced oranges with olive oil and balsamic and s&p. It always tasted good with a good beef stir fry.

  26. Victoria on January 22, 2015 at 6:54 am

    Sometimes late night workouts just have to happen. So when it does, I usually try to drink a “sleepytime” herbal tea or this wonderful “Keep Calm” magnesium supplement I just found. Paired with a little stretching, I will knock out! 🙂

  27. Christina Recine on January 22, 2015 at 8:23 am

    That Apple slaw looks delish .. I will be making that soon !

  28. April on January 22, 2015 at 8:38 am

    I’m a huge apple lover, so this slaw looks absolutely delicious!

    Like you, I could handle a detox…but ask me to give up my daily coffee? Heck no! I can’t function without it (sad, but true!).

  29. Mary Beth on January 22, 2015 at 9:06 am

    I’m glad I’m not the only one who can’t work out at night! I get restless legs really bad if I workout too hard after dinner. I can do yoga late though.

  30. Erika S. on January 22, 2015 at 11:09 am

    Glad to know that I’m not the only one who gets suckered into these marketing tactics. The sample bar gets me every time…great way to get introduced to new things though! I’m going to look for those apples.

  31. Crystal on January 22, 2015 at 12:03 pm

    I actually don’t have a hard time falling asleep after a nighttime workout. Not sure if it has anything to do with it, but I take plenty of time to cool down, stretch, and then when I shower I use lavender soap haha. Oh yeah, I also eat carbs after my workout, so by bedtime I’m ready for sleepyland.

  32. Adam on January 23, 2015 at 12:42 am

    First the apple slaw blew me away! It is so easier to prepare and involved all my favorite ingredients especially lemon juice and apple cider vinegar, these two take the taste of salads to another level. I do not work out just before sleeping, I may take a short walk right after my dinner but nothing too exhausting. Though I like to meditate before I sleep, it quiets my mind and leads me to a very restful sleep.

  33. Courtney Tucker on February 18, 2015 at 6:13 pm

    Oh my gosh. This side dish is so not me, but I think I’ve got to try it. It looks interesting enough that it just might work for me. And it helps that I can’t resist a pork taco. Thanks for always encouraging me out of my comfort zone, Gina.

    • Fitnessista on February 18, 2015 at 10:08 pm

      :)! let me know if give it a try!

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