Ramadan is almost knocking on our door, and the question keeps popping in our mind how to manage fitness with the Roza, Sehri, and Iftaar.
Obviously, It will take some time to adapt to the new eating routine. The basic idea is to complete your calorie intake between Iftar (fast-breaking meal) and Sehri or Suhoor (the last meal before fast). This year the duration of Roza (fast) is going to be approx 14 hrs, that means we cannot have anything from 4 am to 6 pm (depends on the geographic zone too). One can still be in a fat loss routine with dieting and be working out, during Ramadan as it follows the pattern of Intermittent Fasting automatically (the eating window gets smaller due to fasting). On the other hand bulking or gaining diet might not be a good idea during Ramadan, because too much calorie intake in such a short eating window could be troublesome as it causes bloating, digestion problem etc.
The Sehri should comprise of 30 to 60 gms of protein with some form of fiber (fruits or veggies) along with some milk or nuts. Plan the iftar and your post workout meal such that it contains a good amount of proteins and fats with some carbohydrates so that the proper functioning of hormones during the fasting period remains unaffected.
Sleeping is equally important as far as your dieting and working out part is concerned. Sleep could get disrupted due to the change in eating pattern, increase in caloric intake during the night a shift in the meal timings etc. It is this imperative to eat healthy in Ramadan than during other times, which is also consistent with it's spiritual goals.
For example, I have a client who will be fasting during this holy month and his goal is fat loss. He is presently on 2000 kcal diet. This is how his plan looks like:-
- Cow milk
- Egg whites
- Whey protein
- White rice
- White rice
- Some Fruit
So, now let's come to the workout timings as it is not possible for everyone to follow because of their respective schedules, basically, there are three options that you can actually go for
- Working out 2 hours prior to Iftar. This could be challenging and is not advisable for 95% of the people.
- When the Iftar time comes break your fast by having a protein snack with some water and some fruits and go for your workout.
- It's very common one going to the gym after the Sehri but I personally do not follow this as it gets really difficult to Workout in full stomach and too much of water within your system.
- After Iftar and till Sehri you need to make sure you get lots of water.
- During Ramadan, it is especially important to make sure there is protein, fats, and plenty of green vegetables in every meal.
- Follow the 80:20 rule - Do enjoy the feasts but 80% of the times, select fruits/berries/a piece of dark chocolate to satisfy sweet cravings.
- Have some homemade delicacies/desserts once or twice a week.
- Water is important, but gulping down four to five glasses before Sehri could be troublesome. Instead, hydrate at intervals throughout the night. Set an alarm if you need to!
- Eat responsibly during Iftar.
- Avoid gorging into the final meal before the fast. It should contain ample amount of protein, some source of carbohydrates and fruits.
- Fasting can have health effects, so it is important to listen to your body first if you feel you are pushing too hard. Heart palpitations, dizziness and weakness can be causes of concern.
Take care and stay fit. May this month be a blessing for everyone.
Peace be with you all.
Article Contributed by - Adil Islam (GetSetGo Coach)
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