What Is The Safest Way To Exercise Safely During Ramadan

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The holy month of Ramadan is a time for reflection, appreciation and spiritual rejuvenation. During this time, fasting must be followed from sunset to sundown, from which time eating and drinking is then permitted. Whilst this time can provide sacred enlightenment for Muslims around the world, it can also interfere with a traditional fitness regime that was followed prior to Ramadan.

Fitness and Ramadan do not have to be worlds apart, in fact, you can still maintain a sustainable workout routine, even whilst fasting for the month. The trick is to optimise your workouts and also figure out what works best for you. Ramadan is different for everyone, from the reflections they face to the strength they find within themselves, tailoring your Ramadan fitness routine can be effectively done with the following suggestions. In This blog post, we will share the safest way to exercise during Ramadan, ways that will also allow you to get the most out of your workouts without deferring from your Ramadan goals. Take a look at the following suggestions:

Your experience is unique to you

Understand that your body will react differently to others. From your enlightenment experience to how your body will physically react to fasting, your Ramadan will completely differ from your peers. If you are used to eating nutritious meals during the day between working out, fasting will likely bring a shock to your bodily systems. Understand that whatever you experience is normal, however regulating these reactions with eating and drinking well between Iftar and Sehri will minimise the negative impacts they may have. There is no one-size-fits-all approach to balancing your exercise regime during Ramadan, so go with the flow and listen to your body, which we will discuss in further detail at a later point.

Timing is key

Timings for exercise are important during Ramadan. Whilst you may have previously exercised after work, this time now may be right before Iftar, meaning you are at your weakest. It is recommended that exercise takes place following Iftar, or right before suhoor. This will ensure that enough energy is stored in your body to get you through the workout safely, and supported by your energy reserves.  Trying to engage in vigorous exercise without any food and whilst dehydrated can lead to you passing out, or worse in extreme cases. However, keep in mind that some find that exercising at different times works for them. For example, some find the benefits in completing strength training right before Iftar to reap the benefits of the protein intake following the workout. Try out different schedules until you figure out the right one for you

Pick your exercise genre carefully

The genre of exercise you choose to complete can also have an impact on your health during Ramadan. Whilst it is recommended that individuals eat as much as they would on a typical day during the fast, many still have a lower calorie intake during Ramadan, leading to lower energy stores. Exercises such as high-intensity interval training require sufficient energy storage in order to complete the workout in the safest way possible. Due to this, such workouts are not encouraged during the month of Ramadan, and in turn intensity interval training and strength training are recommended for most. This is entirely dependent on what you are capable of, however, as you may find HIIT training to be a breeze following a delicious meal at Iftar!

Listen to your body

Forget listening to your friends and family as to how you should be navigating fitness over Ramadan, listen to your body. Your body is the best indication as to how you should be tailoring your workouts over this sacred period. If you feel weak and feel a low mood spurring due to being in a fasted state, do not force yourself to exercise. Take care of your mental well-being, and instead opt for a day of prayer in your abaya and reading of the Quran. The best thing you can do during Ramadan is offer kindness to those around you, including yourself.

Hydrate when the fast is broken

Dehydration can be the hardest part of Ramadan, especially as exercise releases a significant volume of water weight you might be holding onto. As with your nutrition, you should make sure that you are drinking at least 3 litres of water once the fast is broken. It would also be a great idea to get some electrolytes into your system after breaking fast, as they will quickly help your body to rehydrate and restore essential minerals into your system.

Eat nutrient-rich foods

Last but certainly not least, you need to make sure that you eat nutrient-rich foods following your fast. This means proteins, carbs, and fruit and vegetables to restore your nutrient-rich intake. Have a diverse and colorful range of foods that not only offer slow-releasing energy, but foods that will also make you feel satisfied after eating. Eating foods that are highly processed and lacking essential nutrients during your fast can do your health more harm than good.

Bottom line

Overall, exercise during Ramadan does not have to be a taboo topic. You should be open about your experience and prepared to try the various avenues to make it work. Be sure to focus on your spiritual enlightenment, but also consider your health and show gratitude for the healthy body and mind you have.