A commonly asked question by many during Ramadan is related to whether to workout or not to during this holy time of year. Another frequently related query has to do with the type of nutrition plan one should stick to.
Whilst many may view Ramadan as the time of year to lose muscle mass and their strength, others take this month up as a challenge. And that’s exactly how it should be. Ramadan isn’t a month to indulge upon cravings and get lethargic in terms of working out. Trends are slowly changing around the world and Pakistan is no exception.
This Ramadan, it’s time to go full throttle by making a few necessary amendments in your nutrition and workout plan. And to help you out, we’re giving you tips straight from the experts. So let’s not waste any more time and get right into it!
Is it safe to fast and exercise?
First things first, fasting and exercise definitely go hand in hand. Fitness experts recommend that it’s not only safe but also healthy to workout during Ramadan. You just need to make the right choices, be aware of your body and decide what suits you best. After all, exercising while fasting is so important to boost your metabolism and maintain weight.
You can make changes to your fitness routine in just one month
Remember that your body reacts at a faster pace to change than you can possibly imagine. The human body has the capability to adapt to any form of alteration in your healthy lifestyle. And you won’t believe the results can be astonishing. Yes, a minimum of three weeks are essential to get that consistency up and running. But once you observe transformation results, it can be addicting.
What sort of exercises should be carried out during Ramadan?
If you’re stuck on what sort of exercises to carry out on a routinely basis in Ramadan, we’d suggest not to worry. Any form of exercise that accelerates your heart rate to above 150/min must be avoided. This is especially true in conditions where you are in a fasting state. It always helps to indulge in slow or even moderate forms of exercise.
Health and fitness experts suggest brisk walking, cycling, cross training, slow pace jogging and any light machine themed exercises at the gym to be ideal workout during Ramadan.
Why you should avoid weight training in Ramadan when you’re fasting?
Weight training in Ramadan can result in great muscle breakdown, especially when in a state of fasting. When you’re training on an empty stomach, you’re bound to become dehydrated. This ultimately results in decrease in strength. So what is the end result if you may ask? It’s more detrimental effects than beneficial ones.
You can’t give up weight training all together but you can alter your timings. Yes you heard that right. Weight training can best be performed after Taraweeh prayers. This will ensure that you have plenty of nourishment like food and drink inside your system. This will also permit you to indulge in your important and favorite post workout meals or shakes. And just in case you don’t find this to be fitting into your schedule, experts recommend working out one hour post iftar. Keep your duration short yet intense such as a 30 minute weight training session.
Take up Ramadan cardio workouts before suhoor for maximum fat loss
Many fitness enthusiasts take up cardio workouts in Ramadan with great fervor and determination. And with the greatest advantage of doing so being fat loss, we don’t blame them one bit. But what is the ideal time to perform cardio sessions in Ramadan? The answer is simple, just before suhoor. Yes we know what you’re thinking- who would possibly want to work out at 3am? But this is an ideal scenario if you wish to seek maximum fat losing results.
A great tip is to wake up and have plenty of water with a nice cup of green tea. You must wait for 30 minutes, after which you can start your moderate intensity cardio session. Light jogs, sprints, cycling or aerobics are some good examples.
A balanced diet should also be practiced during Ramadan
You are definitely what you eat. And while this notion is not given much significance in the Pakistani population, it’s probably as real as it gets. The tempting aroma and visuals of fried foods and all you can eat offers being thrown by eateries is irresistible. But if you ask nutritionists, you’re better off without them.
Ramadan is a wonderful month to detoxify your body from harmful toxins by eating clean. Fresh fruits, vegetables, grains and dairy must all be taken in adequate quantities. Neither should you overeat nor should you starve yourself.
Fizzy and carbonated drinks, alongside deep fried fattening foods with high glycemic indexes will only make you cringe, lethargic and gain weight. Did we mention the plethora of health ailments that come with that too?
Ideal Ramadan nutrition plan for iftar and suhoor
Avoid having excess water at iftar because you’re bound to fill up quickly, leaving you to feel hungry soon afterwards. And this can ultimately lead to binge eating. Start off with a nutritious serving of chickpea salad and include a serving of protein, fresh fruits and vegetables. For Suhoor, it’s smart to eat fiber rich meals that leave you full till the next day. Oats or porridge with fresh fruits and nuts is termed ideal. Avoid excess tea and coffee as they act as diuretics and hence rid your body of water reserves.
Training and workout during Ramadan is the best strategy to keep your body fit while you fast. Ask your trainer what exercise suits you and stick to it. With the right kind of diet and nutrition choices, you get that fit and glam look on this Eid.
Happy Ramadan to you from Dabs team!