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  1. #1
    Registered User nina995's Avatar
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    Waking up starving at night - help/advice?

    Hi,

    I have a specific issue that's kinda setting back my progress. I'm a 23yo female and have started working out in the gym a bit over a year ago. In the beginning, this was happening more often than now, but I have just started an (unhealthy) bulk and increased my time as well as my intensity in the gym (heavier weights) and this has started happening again (usually after a more intense training or a more active day in general). Basically, I wake up at night between 3-5am feeling quite hungry. Sometimes I can fall back asleep and sometimes I just go and eat. Usually eating doesn't relieve the hunger pangs, but I do fall back asleep if I eat enough. It is annoying because it usually also leads to some lack of sleep.

    I eat enough during the day, and I am careful with protein intake. For example, yesterday's meals:
    Breakfast: 2 slices of bread + 1/2 avocado + 2 large eggs
    -workout: glutes (hip thrusts, variety of squats, cable donkey kicks, abductor machine etc.) for 90min including dynamic warm-up and cool-down (stretching)
    After workout: 1 scoop whey (shake)
    Lunch: lasagna + some lettuce
    Snack 1: apple + 1 cup of banana chips
    Snack 2: slice of bread + cheese + salami
    Dinner: huge slice of lasagna + 2 scoops whey (shake) + snickers bar (50g)
    After-dinner snack: slice of whole-wheat bread + 1/4 avocado + slice of cheese

    Still woke up at night and had to eat (cereal at 4.20am and cottage cheese, followed by a BCAA drink at 5.15am).

    I reckon I eat enough if not too much for my height, age and goals (I am 5'8" and 65kg, want to gain muscle mass). I eat more than my appetite allows, I often force some food down. The only other explanation I have for my mid-night starving sessions is stress. I get really busy and consequently stressed out at times (being a student). Could the extra stress be the cause of this hunger or am I perhaps lacking in some macro-/micronutrient?
    If anyone has any solutions for this, please let me know. I have asked a few coaches about this, and they mostly have no idea. One said that this happens to him too, but he just eats in the middle of the night and that's it. I would personally prefer sleeping though.

    Thanks!
    Last edited by nina995; 01-31-2019 at 06:51 AM.
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  2. #2
    Registered User Jakeh1's Avatar
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    Don't really see anything in your 'menu' that I would constitute an "unhealthy bulk".

    Your menu really is useless to us without knowing the macros of what it is you're eating. You say lasagne for lunch; 500g of lasagne? 50000g lasagne? Do you see my point?

    Also, your "training", am I reading it correctly that you literally only train your glutes and abs?

    If you're getting hungry in the night, then eat your dinner or "after-dinner snack" before you go to bed.
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  3. #3
    Registered User nina995's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Jakeh1 View Post
    Don't really see anything in your 'menu' that I would constitute an "unhealthy bulk".

    Your menu really is useless to us without knowing the macros of what it is you're eating. You say lasagne for lunch; 500g of lasagne? 50000g lasagne? Do you see my point?

    Also, your "training", am I reading it correctly that you literally only train your glutes and abs?

    If you're getting hungry in the night, then eat your dinner or "after-dinner snack" before you go to bed.
    I don't measure my food, which may be the issue, but judging by the portion sizes and estimating calories I'd say I eat enough. I could be wrong though. It is also physically hard for me to eat more. My diet isn't very unhealthy, but I don't shy away from junk food if I want it.

    No, I don't only train my glutes and abs. I train upper body as well as lower body, it just happened to be a glute day that day.

    I do eat right before bed sometimes (and still wake up hungry), but perhaps not the right foods.

    Thanks for the reply!
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    Registered User Nedo's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by nina995 View Post
    It is also physically hard for me to eat more.
    Physically hard for you to eat more yet hungry, they just don't correlate to me.

    Sounds like the lasagna is a staple in your diet. If I know lasagna, it packs alot of cals that add up quick. Try replacing it with something else (or reducing frequency) which would allow you to eat more volume of food for the same amount of cals. This should make you more satiated. Ie) do a salad with olive oil based dressing and maybe chicken and rice/pasta with it. You eat no veggies anyways. See how that's more food than just a piece of lasagna? I would also look to replace the shakes with whole food as much as possible given whole food is more satiating than shakes. Unless taken with milk, shakes make me hungry if anything lol. I also drink psyllium husk before my dinner and notice i'm half full just from the drink. Looks like your diet could use some more fiber. A glass or two of water before meals helps with satiety too.

    There is always going to be some level of hunger especially on a cut. I still feel hungry when at maintenance and even slight surplus. If I ate according to my appetite I'd be smashing 5000 cals+ a day.
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  5. #5
    Registered User nina995's Avatar
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    I actually experience that often. I am hungry, but can't eat any more - my small stomach capacity or my low appetite just won't allow it. I'm sure it happens to other people as well when trying to gain weight.

    I actually eat lasagna very rarely. I eat quite a varied diet. It just happened to be so that I ate lasagna twice on that specific day (it was home-made).

    Thank you, perhaps the fiber would be helpful. I decreased the amount of veggies I'd normally eat since I am trying to bulk, but perhaps more veggies would help keep me fuller through the night. I'll try it.

    Yes, that's understandable. I just don't want to be waking up because I am hungry though.
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    Originally Posted by nina995 View Post
    Hi,

    I have a specific issue that's kinda setting back my progress. I'm a 23yo female and have started working out in the gym a bit over a year ago. In the beginning, this was happening more often than now, but I have just started an (unhealthy) bulk and increased my time as well as my intensity in the gym (heavier weights) and this has started happening again (usually after a more intense training or a more active day in general). Basically, I wake up at night between 3-5am feeling quite hungry. Sometimes I can fall back asleep and sometimes I just go and eat. Usually eating doesn't relieve the hunger pangs, but I do fall back asleep if I eat enough. It is annoying because it usually also leads to some lack of sleep.

    I eat enough during the day, and I am careful with protein intake. For example, yesterday's meals:
    Breakfast: 2 slices of bread + 1/2 avocado + 2 large eggs
    -workout: glutes (hip thrusts, variety of squats, cable donkey kicks, abductor machine etc.) for 90min including dynamic warm-up and cool-down (stretching)
    After workout: 1 scoop whey (shake)
    Lunch: lasagna + some lettuce
    Snack 1: apple + 1 cup of banana chips
    Snack 2: slice of bread + cheese + salami
    Dinner: huge slice of lasagna + 2 scoops whey (shake) + snickers bar (50g)
    After-dinner snack: slice of whole-wheat bread + 1/4 avocado + slice of cheese

    Still woke up at night and had to eat (cereal at 4.20am and cottage cheese, followed by a BCAA drink at 5.15am).

    I reckon I eat enough if not too much for my height, age and goals (I am 5'8" and 65kg, want to gain muscle mass). I eat more than my appetite allows, I often force some food down. The only other explanation I have for my mid-night starving sessions is stress. I get really busy and consequently stressed out at times (being a student). Could the extra stress be the cause of this hunger or am I perhaps lacking in some macro-/micronutrient?
    If anyone has any solutions for this, please let me know. I have asked a few coaches about this, and they mostly have no idea. One said that this happens to him too, but he just eats in the middle of the night and that's it. I would personally prefer sleeping though.

    Thanks!
    Do you wake up in the night BECAUSE of the hunger? or do you wake up at first by some other reason, and then you realise you are hungry. In the last weeks did your weight change ?
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  7. #7
    Yells at clouds BS57's Avatar
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    I'm curious as to how you know you're bulking when you're not even aware of what you're consuming? I mean, if you'd said you've been doing this for years, I could understand, but that's not the case here.

    You need to learn proper nutrition, and can start here: https://forum.bodybuilding.com/showt...hp?t=173439001

    Read that until you understand it, then come back with questions as opposed to simply guessing at things.
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  8. #8
    Registered User jthomasofficial's Avatar
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    Very simple. Eat until you are full at night. If you are waking up at 5 in the morning hungry, that means you weren't eating enough the night before.
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  9. #9
    Registered User FlySwiftPanda's Avatar
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    The only reason you wake up at night starving is because you haven't eaten enough during the day.
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