Spoiler alert: You don’t have to choose between physical health and spiritual health this Ramadan.
Keeping fit and maintaining an active lifestyle is challenging enough as it is. For those celebrating Ramadan, it might be extra tough to do so especially since there’s fasting from dawn to dusk for 30 days. It could seem daunting to stay fit and even keep up with your workouts especially if you’re going to be without food and water for most of the day. However, it isn’t impossible to maintain your fitness level during this period! In fact, all it takes are some mindful adjustments in your routine, a dash of patience and the perseverance to press on and try again if you fall off track. Ready to make the most of this month? Here are 7 tips for maintaining your fitness while fasting!
- Commit to it
Once you make the decision to commit to maintaining your fitness, half the battle is won. Even though it could get tough at certain points, sticking with your decision and setting goals to work towards would keep you on track. If you’d like to increase your success rate, it helps to get a friend on board with your plan so you can both motivate and keep tabs on each other.
- Fuel up with healthy food
Protein plays a major role in muscle maintenance while fiber keeps you satiated for longer hours. Hence, it is important to eat healthy food that can benefit your body – even if you might not feel like it. Some good options you can consider having during suhoor include fruits, eggs, whole grains, steamed fish, vegetables and multigrain sandwiches.
- Avoid junk food
A common mistake made during Ramadan is having the mindset that it is okay to feast after fasting. Even though fried food or snacks can be tempting, they would do nothing but slow down your metabolism and make you feel sluggish. This could potentially make you feel lazy and skip your workouts as a result. It also helps to be mindful and be careful not to overeat so you avoid indigestion and lethargy.
- Stay hydrated
To avoid dehydration during fasting, you have to drink as much fluid as you can during suhoor and iftar, as well as the time between these meals. Stay away from coffee and tea as they will dehydrate you and reach out for plain water instead. Although water is good and calorie-free, you can also change things up and have drinks such as plant-based milk, coconut water, smoothies and protein shakes.
- Listen to your body
Overexerting yourself during your workouts will do more harm than good because you’re in your fasted state and you might get injured. During this period, it is more crucial than ever to choose workouts that allow you to go at your own pace. Whether it’s Muay Thai, BJJ or HIIT, ensure that you train at a comfortable pace and listen to your body so that you can go at an intensity that is right for you.
- Prioritise sleep
Apart from your diet, sleep is another thing to make a top priority during this season. After all, your body requires 7 hours of sleep to recover effectively. If you don’t sleep well at night, why not catch up on the ZZZ’s with some quick powernaps? Besides helping you feel refreshed, powernaps can boost your mood and keep you productive. Having said that, do not confuse these 15 to 20 minute naps with the longer ones! When you oversleep and nap for too long, it would bring about the opposite effect and cause lethargy.
- Make the most out of your training
Because everyone is different, you should discover what works best for you so you can get more out of every workout. If you aren’t sure, observe yourself first and figure out if you perform better on an empty stomach or after breaking fast. While it helps to exercise around an hour prior to breaking fast so you can eat right after to replenish your body, you might prefer to work out only after breaking fast – and that’s totally fine! Take the next step towards maintaining your fitness level this month by committing to a training schedule. If you aren’t sure where to begin, come by for a class with us and we’ll help you get on track!