5 Simple Things To Do Before Bed If You're Trying To Lose Weight

Keep shedding the pounds before you hit the hay.

Last updated on Jan 06, 2024

woman in bed smiling Gladskikh Tatiana / Shutterstock

If your bedtime ritual is getting in the way of fitting into those skinny jeans, you're not alone. Late-night routines can ruin a day of healthy habits, winding up the scale rather than winding down your day.

If you find yourself sticking to your diet throughout the day, but often break before bed, there are a few very helpful tips to keep you on track and sleeping tight.

Here are 5 simple things to do before bed if you're trying to lose weight.

1. Skip the nightcap.

Although a serving of wine or your favorite cocktail might seems like the perfect nightcap to relax before bed, alcohol can disrupt your sleep, and it's not the best choice for your waistline.


Many drinks are loaded with calories; on average, one serving of alcohol contains 100-150 calories. Mixed drinks that include juices or syrups add even more calories, hindering weight loss success. Plus, having a sip or two often leads to the munchies, and late-night snacking can lead to weight gain and even obesity.



Instead of winding down in a boozy way, sip on warm milk (try it sprinkled with cinnamon) or brew a cup of herbal tea. You can also opt for a cup of water to stay hydrated during the night.


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2. Map out your morning.

Thinking about everything you need to do when you awake from a restful sleep can feel overwhelming. But to put your mind at ease, especially with the stress and motivation needed for losing weight, take five minutes to plan and pack for the next day.

This will help you avoid temptations throughout the day, making smart choices a no-brainer. Set yourself up for success the night before by planning breakfast and packing your gym bag. Perhaps also pack a healthy lunch, and make note of the times of day you tend to be hungry.

Having everything easily within reach and ready to go means there's one less excuse between you and your workout. Plus, it will give you the push you need to prevent you from impulsively ordering a sugary pastry at the coffee shop.


things to do before bed to lose weight plan the next dayPhoto: cottonbro studio / Pexels

3. Keep a food journal.

Keeping a food journal is a great way to stay accountable to your weight loss goals. Having everything you've eaten in a day right in front of your eyes is a good way to keep you motivated.

Before bed, look back on your food choices from the day, noticing where you can make simple swaps and adjustments. If you noticed that you had too many calories at lunch, you can make changes for the next day.


Studies have also found that people who kept a daily record of their food intake lost twice as much weight as individuals who kept no record at all. All it takes is a few minutes before bedtime to write everything down. It's also a great reminder of your hard work, becoming motivated to continue making healthy choices.

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4. Make a to-do list.

While most people keep a mental to-do list at the tip of their brain from the moment they wake up to the moment they hit the pillow at night, keeping a physical, written to-do list the night before is incredibly helpful in helping you stay on track.

According to a study in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, although uncompleted tasks can be mentally distracting, making a plan ahead of time alleviates some of this anxiety. As one of the lead researchers said, “Simply writing the tasks down will make you more effective.”




Before you drift off to dreamland, get out paper and pen and start writing. Include all your responsibilities for the next day — including your fitness routine and meals — and break down bigger tasks into smaller, more manageable ones along the way.

Not only will you be well prepared for the next day, but you'll feel like sticking to your plan is much more practical.

5. Take a hot bath or shower.

There's nothing more pleasant than taking a hot bath or shower and letting the water relax your muscles and mind. But taking one before bed is another great way to encourage you to stick to your weight loss routine.


Body temperature is extremely important in the sleep-wake cycle, and our bodies naturally decrease in core temperature as we sleep. Taking a hot bath or shower before bed improves sleep quality and, thus, leaves you feeling well-rested and ready to tackle the next day.

things to do before bed to lose weight take hot bath or showerPhoto: Yaroslav Shuraev / Pexels


Research has found that the ideal temperature for a shower or bath is between 104-108.5 degrees Fahrenheit, where it improves sleep quality. The best time to bathe is 1-2 hours before bedtime, allowing you to fall asleep faster, as the warm water stimulates blood flow.

A good night's rest is essential to shedding pounds; sleep deprivation usually leads to metabolic dysregulation, and staying awake longer increases the chances of you wandering into the kitchen for a late-night snack.

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Emily Bibb is a writer, editor, and co-founder of Breef, an agency marketplace. Her writing has appeared on Yahoo, PopSugar, Health, Forbes, MSN, Times.News, among others