The ritual of fasting teaches us patience, discipline and compassion, which also need to be incorporated in our diet and fitness regimes during the month of Ramazan. Two fitness gurus talk to us about how you need to adjust your routine, in order to continue training in Ramazan. Rather than focusing on what you can’t do, focus on some of the known benefits that come with fasting and centre your workout and diet around those new goals
Ashtanga Vinyasa Yoga Teacher and Reiki Practitioner
How can yoga benefit us in Ramazan ?
Yoga is totally in sync with Ramazan. The guided meditation and pranayama (yogic breath) is deeply calming and very spiritual in nature and the asanas (poses) help us find balance. All these factors automatically make yoga become a part of Ramazan as all these teach us the same things as fasting.
What would be an ideal time for yoga in Ramazan?
Personally, I add pranayama to my rituals right after morning prayers. Alternate nostril breath, humming bee breath and full yogic retention breath are amongst a few of the pranayama techniques that help me feel grounded and calm and gently fall back asleep after sehri. I find that doing a full yoga practice right before iftar is a healthy addition to my day. It keeps me grounded, focused and toned as well.
Some nutritional tips you’d like to share:
Dates are the best natural source for energy, sugar, fibre and minerals and of course, it’s a sunnat to begin and end your fast with dates. Remember to stay hydrated with ample water. Stay away from sugary drinks and food. Try to include bananas, oatmeal, honey, almonds and peanut butter. These are great in nutritional value.
Owner of Gymtonic
What is an ideal workout routine in Ramazan?
Any training routine that’s shorter (30-45mins), and focuses on strength and muscle building. Your body is already in a state of stress and catabolism so HIIT isn’t the best and that too, everyday!
What is the correct time for working out while fasting during Ramazan?
Depending on goals, fasted training right before iftar can boost growth hormones and burn fat. Sadly, it can also burn a lot of muscle and cause exhaustion due to water and electrolyte loss. Ideal time would be 2-3 hours after iftar.
What is a good diet for those fasting and working out during Ramazan?
Ketogenic diets are great for Ramazan, unless you’re a serious athlete! Keep carbs to a minimum, stay away from rice, sweets, dates and iftar buffets. (A lot of people actually gain weight in Ramazan because they eat so many carbs at iftar and sehri!).
Hydration is vital and simply drinking water won’t cut it. Ensure you have the right balance of sodium and potassium if you’re exercising.
What are the two fitness and diet do’s and don’ts during Ramazan?
Replenish with fluids and electrolytes especially if training intensely.
Ensure you are getting enough protein during your eight-hour eating window.
Continue to exercise if you’re feeling faint or low on energy. Blood sugar and pressure levels can drop rapidly, causing you to collapse.
Don’t focus only on HITT workouts alone. They burn out the CNS (central nervous system) and are hard on the body.