The fasting month of Ramadan is set to begin in a day or two – how will you manage your fitness schedule during the holy fast?
If you’re worried that feeling weak and tired may cause you to ditch your fitness programme, then these tips are for you. With the right skills, you can exercise without having to worry about exhaustion and lack of energy during the day! How do you do it? Like this:
1. Get a check-up
See your doctor and get your health checked before you start exercising in the fasting month. Do you have type 1 diabetes? If so, it’s best that you skip exercise in order to maintain the balance of your blood sugar level. If you have type 2 diabetes, exercise with light intensity is suggested – like low-impact aerobic or strength-training. Working-out more than 30 minutes is not recommended!
2. Have your ‘suhoor’ (meal before you start fasting) close before ‘fajr’ (the time limit to finish the suhoor).
Sleepiness is often the excuse to skip this activity. Well, think about this: treat it like having a breakfast ‘in advance’. It’s best to have your ‘sahoor’ close before ‘fajr’ – this shortens the time that you have an empty stomach. Make sure you have enough of your nutrient-intakes, like low-fat and high-protein meals. That way, you’ll be more energised and able to stay active during the day.
3. Exercise before ‘iftar’ (breakfasting after dusk).
To avoid dehydration, do not exercise in the morning or even the afternoon – and don’t force yourself. Twilight is the best time for exercise, so there won’t be a long gap between that and ‘iftar’. Start with a 20-minute exercise, and then gradually add another ten minutes every day. You don’t need to worry about exhaustion, because you’ll soon replace the nutrients you lose when ‘iftar’ comes.
4. Don’t forget warm-ups and cool-offs.
Although you may not exercise as intensely as you normally do, don’t forget to do warm-up and cool-off stretches to avoid any injuries.
5. Make sure you’re well-rested the night before.
Since exercising during fasting will drain more energy, make sure you are well-rested the night before. Eating vegetables and fruits can also keep you energised, especially for exercise.
6. Don’t delay your ‘iftar’.
Eat and drink right away when ‘iftar’ comes to replace the energy that you have lost from exercise. High-protein meals are recommended to avoid the loss of your muscle mass and to quicken post-exercise recovery.
Still having second thoughts about exercising during the fasting month? No need to worry, as long as you follow these tips. Have a great fasting month. Stay fit and healthy!