Hitting the gym might be the very last thing you feel like doing while working a stretch of night shifts. Good news! You can absolutely get your fitness fix while working nights – here are several ways to squeeze in some mini workouts on the job.

Make your commute a workout

  • Walk to work.
  • Bike to work.
  • Get off the subway a stop early.
  • Park in the furthest parking lot.

Sit on a stability ball

Strengthen your core by sitting on a stability ball, forcing your abdominal muscles to compensate for changes in balance. You’ll be doing a low-intensity workout every time you sit down, and all those nighttime hours will really add up.

You’ll also improve your balance and tone your core muscles while sitting at your desk. Well done, you!

Take the long(er) way

Find ways to sneak in extra steps – all those steps add up at the end of the night.

  • If you need to deliver something to another department, take it yourself.
  • Instead of calling a coworker, walk to their desk.
  • Use the bathroom at the far end of the building.

Skip the elevator

If you don’t have big boxes of paperwork to carry, what’s stopping you from taking the stairs? The stairs are free and pack a serious cardio punch. (Other people are actually paying big bucks to use a stair climber at their gym!)

Stand up for yourself

Get out of that chair! Try a standing desk. (Improvise with a high table or counter if you need to.)

Stand and walk while talking on the phone, if possible. Standing is so much better than slouching in your chair.

Work out with colleagues

You’re probably not the only one trying to fit in some extra fitness at work. Grab some like-minded colleagues and form a push-up club that meets before your shift or a running club that heads out for a quick jog on your midnight break. It can be as simple as doing squat or plank challenges together.

The camaraderie is great and you can hold each other accountable for regular exercise — and offer some much-needed cheerleading to one another when the going gets tough.


There are always little things that need to be brought back and forth. The paperwork, the forms, the coffee, the printer paper… so volunteer yourself! By doing errands, you’ll still be valuable and productive but getting a bonus boost of fitness as you get things done.

Keep fitness gear at work

Keep a stash of resistance bands or small hand weights in your locker or desk drawer for an impromptu workout. Does your company have an on-site gym? Even better! 

How do you squeeze fitness into your night shift? Any tips or tricks to add to this list? Please add your suggestions below in the comments section.


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