Training during Ramadan
PT SAF’S TOP 5 TIPS FOR TRAINING DURING RAMADAN
The way you eat, train and recover are important considerations for any gym-goer, but these things become even more crucial to get right if you are fasting and training during Ramadan.
You certainly don’t have to put your fitness regime on hold entirely during April, however it is key to make sure you listen to your body and look after yourself in order to stay healthy, happy and energised.
One of our Personal Trainers, Saf, at JD Gyms Manchester shares his top 5 tips for training during Ramadan…
PT Saf – JD Gyms Manchester
Tip 1: HYDRATION IS VERY IMPORTANT
As soon as you break your fast, aim to immediately drink half a litre of water to re-hydrate. You could also try coconut water to help replenish electrolytes. Avoid dehydrating yourself further by drinking things containing caffeine, such as coffee or certain fizzy drinks.
Tip 2: MAKE GOOD FOOD CHOICES
You’re going to feel hungry and most likely have cravings for carbohydrate rich food when you break your fast, but try to plan ahead and eat nutrient rich food which is going to nourish your body and fuel your workouts.
Good choices include: complex carbs, veggies, fruits, quality sources of protein such as meat, fish, nuts or beans.
Try to avoid simple carbohydrates such as refined sugars in cakes, chocolate, sweets or junk food. This kind of food will actually make you feel hungrier.
Tip 3: TRAIN SAFELY
Throughout Ramadan you really need to train smart.
Take note of how your body feels each day and be prepared to adapt your plans if you feel weak or tired. Don’t overdo it!
You will potentially be at higher risk of injury during this month, so aim to just maintain your strength and fitness rather than push it. Lower the intensity to match your reduced calorie intake. Low blood sugar levels could also lead to light-headedness or even fainting, so take it easy. If you start to feel dizzy, have a sit down and always ask for help if you need it.
Keep your workouts relatively short, somewhere around 30 minutes – 1 hour. Take longer rest periods between your sets to ensure adequate recovery.
REMEMBER to keep topping yourself up with water during your workout.
Tip 4: PICK YOUR WORKOUT TIME WISELY
This can depend on how you feel each day. Some people report that they actually feel more energised during fasting, whereas others prefer to wait until the evening to train. Waiting until later on will of course mean you are closer to your eating window so you can quickly re-fuel.
Tip 5: GET ENOUGH SLEEP
Sleep is essential for recovery, plus it helps you with your concentration and energy levels throughout the day. If you have the option of a lie-in, do it! If you have a 9-5 job or have to be up early then taking a nap at some point during the day is highly recommend. Anything between 45 mins to 2 hours will be really helpful.
To finish off with….remember that Ramadan is just 1 month out of 12. You will not lose all of your gains or progress in this month if you plan correctly. Don’t worry about going backwards and run the risk of training too hard. Treat this month as a de-load. Reduce your training intensity, reduce the weight, the speed, the sets etc. and give your body time to recover. By the time May comes around you’ll be fully refreshed and ready to SMASH it!