View Full Version : Night swimmers who regularly practice right before sleep?

January 29th, 2018, 08:22 PM
Anyone here regularly swim at night (6pm or later)? If so, do you have any tips or strategies for making workouts productive even when it's late out? In general, does the time of day affect your energy level in the pool?

I usually don't swim nights, as I've been a die hard morning swimmer - with occasional afternoon swims when I can fit them in. Tragically, morning workouts at my pool are no longer available daily :violin:so I look to you all for pointers as I convert to being a bit of a "night swimmer" myself in order to plug in those daily sessions and work with the only time slots my pool has currently available!

From what I understand, intense workout right before bedtime can disrupt your sleep cycle, so I'm trying to dance over this challenge since I don't know if I'm doing myself a favor if workouts come at the price of much needed rest :bed:Maybe an easy or moderate pace in new night practice is necessary to adjust to the time change, and intensity and distance can be added a few weeks out from then?

January 29th, 2018, 10:09 PM
Iíve done both 5:30AM practices and 5:30PM practices and Iíll say that the only advantage for me to the early swims is that itís out of the way for the rest of the day. After a tough workout Iím generally a bit tired and quite hungry which works out well since itís around 7PM when I get home from the pool. Each individual will react differently of course, but I sleep best on nights that Iíve gone swimming. Good luck in your transition!

January 30th, 2018, 08:12 AM
A few years ago, when my Masters team was just getting started, they tried MWF mornings (5:30ish - 6:45 AM) and TTH evenings (8:30 - 9:30 PM). If we had a bigger team, and there was a morning group and an evening group, it would have worked.

As it was, making all the practices was killer. I found I couldn't sleep for at least 2 hours after practice ended, often more. Being tired and in sleep deficient didn't speed getting to sleep. My body was wound up and just needed time to wind down again. I doubt there are any healthy (non strong pharmaceutical) hacks to change that amount of time by much.

My team switched to only morning practices from 5:30-6:45 am.

January 30th, 2018, 02:09 PM
Anyone here regularly swim at night (6pm or later)? If so, do you have any tips or strategies for making workouts productive even when it's late out? In general, does the time of day affect your energy level in the pool?

The time of day doesn't matter to me as much as how much sleep I've had and how long it's been since the previous workout. I'm usually in the water until 7 or 7:30 pm, dinner, sleep around 11 pm, wake-up around 7:30 am. I don't have any issues with it, but I've always considered myself a night person. If you can push back when you wake up, that's the most obvious solution, or throw in a nap during the day. If those aren't options, let's assume you can still do some workouts on weekends during morning/afternoon hours...use those days for the sprint/high rest sets that are time consuming. Use the night workouts to crank out yardage at pace speeds (with fins half the time). That way you're out of the water as soon as possible.

January 30th, 2018, 02:31 PM
I found I couldn't sleep for at least 2 hours after practice ended, often more.

Same here. I can handle a practice that starts at 6:00, but anything where I'm the pool past 9:00 would be too late for me since I need to leave the house for work before 6:00 a.m. I try, and usually fail, to get to bed around 11:00.

January 30th, 2018, 02:53 PM
That is my current problem - getting to sleep after 730 - 900 pm practice. Home by 10 ,snack and then can't fall asleep for 1 - 2 hours!!

January 31st, 2018, 02:16 AM
As youíve already told that you are a morning swimmer, thereís no need for me to tell you what are the good and bads in a morning swimming schedule.
Night/evening swimming schedules are no different just because it will require the same amount energy, same techniques but the difference would be the time of the day which makes a whole lot of difference. By the evening your body would have worked a lot already which brings us to the fact that you will not need much efforts to get your body moving to the pool. But at the same time if you had a stressed out day and you find yourself low on energy, itíll become much difficult for you to execute your swimming schedule.
When you swim in the evening youíll have enough time to get your food in there which is good especially if youíre looking forward to work on your appetite. A smashing physique will come along as a bonus, so donít be surprised.
The most difficult factor that becomes a barrier between you and your swimming schedule is laziness. Youíve been working the whole day and now youíre tired but hey guess what? Now youíre supposed to go to the pool with full energy no matter how tired you are. But as you are a regular swimmer and you know what benefits it carries you wonít find this as a challenge.
Best of Luck.

January 31st, 2018, 12:35 PM
I regularly practice with a masters group whose evening practice times fluctuate seasonally but never are never earlier than 8:30 and may go as late as 9:00. My workout intensity is probably greater in the evening than when I do morning workouts because of needing to leave before practice ends to get to work on time. I do find that if I practice until 9, I have to delay going to bed by about 20 minutes in order to fall asleep. However that is still less missed sleep than morning practice which forces me to get up 75 minutes early.

January 31st, 2018, 04:15 PM
I have done 9-10pm practices for about 9 years. At first I couldn't sleep until 12:30 but I think I was mostly used to it after a few months.

February 1st, 2018, 09:53 AM
I swim from 6pm-7:30 M-TH and on Sunday mornings. I am home eating dinner by 8:15, Then maybe watch some TV, talk/text or read. I am sound asleep by 10pm and up at 5am so that I can be in my office by 6-6:30. Having swum in the early morning as an age group swimmer many years ago I never want to do it again! Over the Christmas Holidays our masters program only has a 6am practice and I do it, but am happy itís only one week a year as I am tired the rest of the day. The evening workout is a perfect finish to a busy, stress-filled day at work. It burns off the adrenaline and I resolve a lot of workday issues in my head while swimming.