Going to the gym with an empty stomach without bringing any water during the month of Ramadan may sound a little insane, yet many Muslims across the world choose to do this. If you plan to go on hiatus from exercising during Ramadan, maybe you should reconsider. Exercise and fasting can definitely go together, just make sure that your goal is maintain your current fitness level and lean muscle tissue. This is not the time to focus on your scale. We bring you some workout ideas that you can do while you fast during the holy month. Of course, bare in mind that you need to know what works best for you.
1. Brisk Walk
Spending a few minutes before iftar by walking, whether it is just outside your home, or at a park nearby. A short brisk walk for at least 10 minutes is a good practice to adopt during the month of Ramadan. It’s good for you and is stress-relieving.
Yoga is a great form of physical and mental exercise for the whole body. It consists of lots of breathing techniques and simple stretching exercises to tone your body. It’s beneficial for the body, both internally and externally. When I do yoga, I always feel fresh and calm, it relaxes my mind and body. It’s my way of meditation. During Ramadan, yoga can be practiced during the day without using up too much energy, but it is always advised to do it after iftar, once the body is nourished and hydrated.
Pilates is a good way to maintain your core strength. Just like yoga, pilates will not elevate your heart rate or core temperature to a high level where you will feel dehydrated.
Running laps, on track, or on the treadmill is good for the heart, improves your stamina and boosts your mood. Listen to musics t keep you distracted from the hunger. However, if you don’t run on normal days, I suggest you not to start during this month, if you’re not already used to a certain workout schedule.
When to exercise?
The best time is right before sunset, and remember that you shouldn’t do something that’s too physically grueling. It largely depends on how you feel and how in tune you are with your body. Keep your workouts short, about 30 to a maximum of 60 minutes, and remember not to overdo it! Exercise at a lower intensity and shorter duration than how you normally would.
Another good ideal time to exercise is after the performing your Taraweeh prayers. You can do a complete workout that’s at a slightly higher density at this time and also include the pre- and post-workout meal.
Fueling: Eating Right
What you eat during your suhoor and iftar matters, so make sure you eat nutritiously. Try to have a suhoor that’s filled with complex carbs along with protein and healthy fat. Don’t eat lots of fried and fatty foods as it will contradict with all the good workouts you’ve done and are about to do.
I understand we love to indulge in all the glorious food that’s always set on the table, buying them from the Ramadan stalls, all the ones that make us drool just walking past them! We tend to have very heavy iftars followed by desserts, can’t lie, it’s a feast.. which is quite unnecessary for the body. Heavy meals will take longer to digest, making it harder to exercise and perform Taraweeh prayers after breaking your fast.
Things to remember
Remember to drink plenty of water between iftar and suhoor to help you avoid being dehydrated. In a nutshell, it should be pointed out that doing exercise or playing any sport in general, should be done in moderation, and especially in Ramadan, should not distract one from what is more important, their acts of worship to Allah.