DUBAI: Staying active during Ramadan can be tricky.
After a day of fasting, the last thing many people want to do is exercise — and finding the energy, and time, to work out can be difficult.
But Khloud Ibrahim, Asics frontrunner and part-time personal trainer, says it’s possible, with just a few tweaks from your normal workout schedule.
Timing-wise, Ibrahim is an advocate of the pre-suhoor workout.
“This is because you can eat directly after your workout, and the food will replenish the body and help your body recover,” she said.
The other option is two to three hours after iftar, when your body has had time to digest food and absorb enough energy.
Ibrahim said exercises should be adapted during Ramadan, by conducting them at a “slower pace.” Weight and strength training can be done, but with caution.
“The best advice would to shift to a lower intensity format, with exercises such as walking during fasting hours,” she said.
If you don’t have the time, or the energy, for a proper workout, Ibrahim said notching up 10,000 steps per day can be just as effective.
If you’re working out during Ramadan, you also need to be aware of your eating and fluid consumption. Ibrahim noted it’s important to eat nutritious meals that can provide long-lasting energy, and drink plenty of water after sunset. Eating fluid-rich foods can also help, as well as decreasing your salt consumption as salty snacks can stimulate thirst.
Here’s what a typical day for Ibrahim looks like:
“I spend my morning at my day job, which is followed by a one hour walk before iftar. In the evening I break my fast with one date and two cups of water, followed by a bowl of soup. After that, I take a break from food while I perform prayer.
“When I start to feel hungry again, I eat my main meal which consists of protein, carbs, fat and fiber. I take a two-hour break afterwards, then I have a snack. I go for prayer, then I go to the gym for 30 to 45 minutes and perform a high intensity workout. Then, for suhoor I usually eat a small meal such as eggs, oatmeal and yogurt with granola.”