How to survive Ramadan without gaining weight? By Riham Masoud

Survive Ramadan Article

Ramadan has been a challenge for most of us to maintain our weight and our fitness levels. I could list some of the excuses or “circumstances” we all go through which makes it a challenge:

  1. Eating only 2 meals only per day
  2. Eating out at family gatherings and dish parties which will get you to overeat most of the times.
  3. Getting exposed to more creative yummy desserts everywhere you go.
  4. Too lazy, too full or too tired to exercise.
  5. There’s never enough time.
  6. You don’t get enough sleep.
  7. You don’t drink enough water.

And the list goes on and on. if you give in to these endless excuses/ circumstances, you WILL gain weight and your fitness levels WILL decline. To stay fit and healthy during the holy month of Ramadan.

You will need:

  • Willpower and inner motivation to do. You have to change your mindset. That all the excuses and circumstances won’t affect you and you CAN overcome them.
  • Follow all/some of my tips inorder to maintain high energy levels, good sleep, enough time and energy to exercise and eat healthy.

15 Tips to survive Ramadan:

Tip 1: Begin iftar with dates


As it provides you with an immediate source of energy

Tip 2: Drink 8 glasses of water a day.


Most of us become consumed by filling our bellies to the max with food, and forget about drinking water! Even though you can’t drink during the day, the water you drink during suhoor and after iftar will keep you hydrated throughout the day. Try totake a cup full or more every hour.

Tip 3: Avoid high-fat, high-sugar content and highly processed food.

eating a fatty meal

Our bodies are working to preserve as much energy possible by iftar time. Therefore, excessive fatty food and sugars will be added to body fat reserves and will make you gain weight.

Tip 4:  Skip the fried food

Child eats French Fries

We know fried food tastes great and it’s super easy to make, but it really isn’t good for you. It can leave you feeling bloated and heavy after half an hour. The effects of oily, greasy food don’t just vanish a few hours after eating them, you will feel thirsty or feel sick during your fast. So it’s best to avoid fried iftars and go for fresh food.


Tip 5: Eat lots of fruit and veggies


Because we only eat 2 main meals a day, it can be easy to forget about them. Add fruit and veggies to your suhoor for a more balanced meal, and to stay fuller for longer. Don’t just eat carbs or just protein. If you’re having eggs for suhoor, why not add some spinach, onions, tomatoes, etc. Also eat a regular salad and/or eat a fruit along with your iftar.


Tip 6: Don’t skip suhoor

As its opportunity to nourish your body with a balanced diet containing complex carbohydrates, fibres, proteins and good fats. It will keep you full throughout your fast


Tip 7: Eat protein in Suhoor.


It’s so easy to eat cereal and toast for suhoor, but it’s really important to eat protein in order to get energy throughout the day. Protein takes more time to digest hence it will keep you full the next day.  Eggs are easy to prepare and pack in a lot of protein to keep you going. You can also have lean cuts of meat, like chicken or beef, so you don’t feel bloated or heavy after suhoor.


Tip 8: Give yourself time to eat in suhour

Eating Time

don’t get up 15 or 20 minutes before fajr to eat. Try to wake up at least half an hour before the start of fajr so you can prepare your meal properly and think about what you are putting in your body for the whole day. When you’re out of time, it’s easy to eat anything you come across in the fridge.


Tip9: Take naps for recovery.


Your body needs enough sleep to help with recovery, so planning rest well will allow us our bodies to recover from exercise and lack of sleep.


Tip 10 Don’t stop working-out in Ramadan

abs workout


Your body maintains muscle mass as long as it feels it’s needed. When you stop exercising, your body will slowly build excessive fat and you will lose muscle mass. Even though you may not make gains in muscle mass during Ramadan, you can at least preserve what you have if you keep training.


Tip 11: Workout when it feels best

Instead of sticking to your daily training schedule, during Ramadan, try to tweak it a bit and do them when you have time and feel the most energetic. It’s way better when you do a workout full of energy and good intensity rather than getting it over with and perform horribly.


Tip 12: Don’t workout with a heavy stomach


Don’t overeat, a heavy stomach will slow you down when you workout and out might feel sick. Many of us feel the need to compensate for the food we didn’t eat throughout the day during iftar . When you break your fast, start with dates and water Then begin to eat slowly; your stomach has been empty all day and so it’s not a good idea to start filling it with food quickly. Take it easy, eat in moderation and take your time.


Tip 13: Protein intake and timing

If you’re used to having several small doses of whey protein over the day, you can’t do that during Ramadan. But if you manage to eat protein in your Sehoor and eftar, you will at least somewhat make up for it. Protein in food is absorbed much slower than protein from powders and will make you fuller.


Tip 14: Don’t workout right after iftar

Family eating dinner

Physical exercise immediately after iftar may not be a good idea, as our blood flow is being directed to our digestive system at that time.

Tip 15: Adjust workout intensity

Don’t go all out in your workouts. On a typical Ramadan day, you have fasted 16 hours, lack of sleep and probably a busy tight schedule. Under those circumstances performing at your usual intensity is very hard to do. It’s ok not to go all out as your carbohydrate reserves are depleted and carbohydrates are the reason you can work out with intensity. So go a bit lower with your intensity.


Last but not least Tip 16

If you don’t have a training program to follow, try out my 30 WODs in 30 Days program The program consists of 30 1-min videos demonstrating 30 simple workouts to be done during Ramadan to keep you active and maintain your fitness level. The workouts are simple and could be done anywhere, at the comfort of your own home. No equipment is need.If you follow

If you follow through these simple tips, you’ll become a healthier, fitter, more energetic version of yourself during the holy month of Ramadan.



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