The month of Ramadan is approaching, for muslims this is the time to focus inwards. Ramadan is also the month when you can potentially lose a lot of muscle tone and can hinder your weight loss goals. Here are 10 important tips help you maintain a healthy workout plan for the month.
1. Understand your goal, and be realistic.
During the month of ramadan your goal should be to maintain your current fitness level and lean muscle tissue.
This is not the time to progress in your workout. Never worked out before? Ramadan is NOT the time to start. But you can still work on changing your eating habits. Eating healthy and not unhealthy.
2. Manage Frequency. To maintain the lean muscle, workout 3-4 times weekly. And it is mandatory to plan prior to Ramadan. This will help you stay motivated.
3. Stay hydrated at night. Aim for at least 2.5 litres.
Try to spread this out throughout the evening, so you don’t flush it all and end up thirsty the next day.
4. Avoid dead-lifts during the month, as it is the movement that carries the highest risk when dehydrated. I’m speaking from experience, unfortunately.
5. Should I do cardio?
Don’t be ridiculous. Unless you’re training for endurance, the only use for cardio here would be to offset a calorie surplus eaten during the night, in which case use this as an opportunity for self control. Remember the Hadith “Enough for a human being to have luqaymat (a few mouthfuls) that prop up his spine and, if he must have more in his stomach, then one third of food, one third of water, and one third of air.”
Cardio to deliberately create a calorie deficit is a recipe for fatigue. The only training goal during this period is the minimum stimulus to maintain muscle mass. The training approach above will ensure that.
Fasting in Ramadan can also have several benefits:
– Improved mental discipline.
– A chance to rekindle your spiritual connection, shut away the distractions and dive inwardly.
– A chance to allow training/diet to run in the background and to focus on higher priorities.
– The potential for restored insulin sensitivity and nutrient partitioning.
– Higher growth hormone output during the fasts.
Ramadan can throw one off the routine but it’s time like these that determine your consistency, motivation and sense of adaptation of different routines and managing to fit.