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Lifestyle, Fitness

How to workout during Ramadan fasting?

Discover how to maintain your workout routine during Ramadan. Our article provides a detailed Ramadan workout plan, alongside essential nutrition and hydration tips to keep you energized and healthy.

Ramadan is not just a time for spiritual reflection; it’s also when many of us wonder how we can keep our fitness routine on track while fasting. If you're picturing a month of putting your workouts on pause, think again!

Ramadan offers a unique opportunity to adapt and tune into our bodies in new ways, without losing sight of our fitness goals. It’s all about finding that sweet spot between keeping the spirit of the month and making sure we don’t turn into couch potatoes.

 So, whether you’re a gym enthusiast, a yoga lover, or someone who just likes to keep moving, We’ve got some cool insights and tips to share on how to navigate working out during Ramadan. After all, it’s about balancing our physical needs with spiritual growth, it’s totally doable. Let’s get started!

Source: Freepik

What is Ramadan?

Ramadan, that special time of year that brings millions of Muslims around the globe together in a profound observance. But what exactly is it? Let's break it down in a way that's as easy to digest as your pre-dawn Suhoor meal.

At its core, Ramadan is the ninth month of the Islamic lunar calendar, and it's considered one of the holiest months for Muslims worldwide. It's a period dedicated to fasting, reflection, prayer, and community.

The fasting during Ramadan isn't just about skipping meals and sipping zero glasses of water from sunrise to sunset. It's a deeper dive into self-discipline, a spiritual cleanse if you will, that purifies the soul and brings the faithful closer to Allah. But it's not all solemnity; Ramadan is also a time for joy, for generosity, and for strengthening bonds within the Muslim community.

From the first light of dawn until the sun dips below the horizon, those observing Ramadan will fast from all food, drink, and other physical needs.

It's a time to shed the distractions and excesses of everyday life, focusing instead on prayer, reflection on the Quran, and charity. But the night brings Iftar, the eagerly awaited meal that breaks the day's fast, which is as much a communal celebration as it is a personal relief.

So, why do Muslims fast during this month? It's a commemoration of the first revelation of the Quran to Muhammad according to Islamic belief. This act of fasting is also one of the Five Pillars of Islam, making it a key component of Muslim faith and practice.

Source: Drazen Zigic on Freepik

Can I workout during Ramadan?

So, you're wondering if hitting the gym or going for a jog is on the table during Ramadan? The short answer: absolutely, but with a few caveats to consider. Let's dive into how you can keep your workout routine without compromising your fasting obligations.

First off, it's important to listen to your body. Fasting from dawn until dusk is no small feat, and it naturally leads to changes in energy levels and hydration status.

The key here is adjustment. While you may be used to high-intensity workouts, Ramadan calls for a shift towards more moderate or even light physical activity. Think of it as tuning the intensity to match your body's current fuel status.

But here's the cool part: light to moderate exercise can actually be quite beneficial during fasting. It can help maintain muscle tone, boost mood, and even improve your sleep. Plus, it's a great way to stay engaged with your fitness goals.

The trick is timing and type. Opt for workouts that are less likely to deplete your energy reserves too quickly. Think yoga, walking, or light resistance training. These are your best bets for keeping fit while fasting.

Now, when to schedule these workouts? There are two prime times: after Iftar (the evening meal that breaks your fast) or before Suhoor (the pre-dawn meal).

Exercising after Iftar allows you to benefit from the energy from your meal, making it a prime time for a bit more vigorous exercise if you feel up to it. On the flip side, a gentle, pre-Suhoor workout can kickstart your metabolism and help you feel more alert throughout the day.

In essence, yes, you can and should workout during Ramadan, but it's all about smart adjustments. Lower the intensity, be mindful of timing, and listen to what your body is telling you. This way, you can keep your fitness journey on track while honoring the spiritual journey of Ramadan. It's all about balance, after all.

Best workouts during Ramadan

Navigating your fitness routine during Ramadan might seem like a puzzle, but it's totally doable with the right approach. Let's zero in on the best workouts that not only fit the fasting schedule but also keep you energized without overdoing it. Remember, the goal is to maintain fitness, not necessarily set personal bests.

1. Low-Intensity Steady-State Cardio (LISS)

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Think of activities like brisk walking, cycling on a flat terrain, or using an elliptical machine at a steady, manageable pace. LISS is fantastic because it burns fat without dipping too much into your energy reserves, making it perfect for Ramadan. Plus, you can enjoy these activities outdoors in the fresh air after Iftar or in the cooler hours before Suhoor.

2. Strength Training with Modifications

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Your regular heavy lifting routine might need a tweak during Ramadan. Focus on maintaining muscle mass with lighter weights and higher repetitions instead of pushing for gains. And really, timing is everything; consider scheduling these sessions after Iftar when you've replenished your energy.

3. Yoga and Stretching

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These are gold-star activities during Ramadan. Not only do they enhance flexibility and core strength, but they also promote relaxation and mindfulness — aligning beautifully with the spiritual reflection of the month. Whether it’s a gentle flow or a more restorative session, yoga can be a serene bridge between your physical and spiritual health.

4. Functional Bodyweight Movements

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Think squats, lunges, push-ups, and planks. These exercises don't require equipment and can be scaled to your fitness level, making them ideal for a home workout. They help in maintaining muscle tone and can easily be incorporated into a short workout routine after Iftar or before Suhoor.

The golden thread running through all these workout suggestions is mindfulness. It’s about being present with your body’s needs and respecting its limits. Adjusting your workout intensity and timing can help you stay active and fit while observing the fast. And remember, it's not just about the body; it's about the spirit too.

The discipline and self-control you exercise in your physical routine can amplify the spiritual reflection that Ramadan is all about. Keep it balanced, keep it meaningful, and let your Ramadan workouts be a reflection of your dedication, both spiritually and physically.

Source: Freepik

When can you eat during Ramadan?

Understanding the eating schedule during Ramadan is crucial, not just for maintaining your energy levels, but also for ensuring that your workouts and overall health stay on track. Let's simplify the when and what of eating during this holy month.

Ramadan fasting is observed from the crack of dawn (Fajr) until sunset (Maghrib). That means your eating window falls outside these hours, divided mainly into two meals: Suhoor, the pre-dawn meal, and Iftar, the evening meal after sunset.

Suhoor is your foundation for the day. Think of it as laying down the nutritional groundwork that'll keep you going. It's not just about filling up; it's about smart eating. Foods that are high in protein and fiber can help you feel fuller longer, releasing energy slowly throughout the day.

Consider incorporating whole grains, eggs, dairy, fruits, and vegetables into this meal. And don't forget to hydrate well. Drinking plenty of water at Suhoor is key since you won't be drinking during daylight hours.

Iftar breaks your fast and is the meal where you can replenish your energy stores. It traditionally starts with a few dates and water, following the Prophetic tradition, which helps your body kickstart its digestion gently.

Then, moving on to a well-balanced meal can help you recover from the day and prepare for the next. Including a mix of carbohydrates, proteins, and fats ensures you're getting a comprehensive set of nutrients. Grains, meats, legumes, vegetables, and fruits should all have a place at your Iftar table.

The timing of these meals and what you choose to eat plays a pivotal role in how you'll feel both during your fast and in your ability to maintain an active lifestyle during Ramadan.

By focusing on nourishment rather than just satiety, you equip your body with the tools it needs to sustain the fast and any physical activities you undertake. It's about quality, balance, and timing, ensuring that when you can eat, you're doing so in a way that honors your body and your fast.

Can you drink water during Ramadan?

Navigating hydration during Ramadan, especially for those incorporating workouts into their routine, is a common concern. So, let's get straight to the point: Can you drink water during Ramadan? Simply put, no, not during the fasting hours from dawn (Fajr) to sunset (Maghrib). But, this restriction opens the door to emphasizing the importance of hydration in the non-fasting hours.

During the non-fasting hours, it's crucial to drink plenty of water to stay hydrated. This is your time to replenish your body's water reserves. Since dehydration can sneak up on you, especially if you're active, prioritizing hydration after sunset and before dawn is key. Aim to drink water consistently throughout the evening and early morning, avoiding large amounts in a short period to prevent discomfort.

Why is staying hydrated so important, especially during Ramadan? Water is essential for nearly every function in your body, from regulating temperature to enabling physical performance and aiding digestion. When you're fasting, your body relies on the water you've stored from your pre-dawn meal until you can hydrate again at sunset.

This means that your hydration strategy should not only focus on drinking water but also on consuming hydrating foods at Suhoor and Iftar, like fruits and vegetables, which can help supplement your water intake.

Remember, while fasting, listening to your body is more important than ever. Symptoms of dehydration include thirst, headache, dizziness, and dry mouth. If you experience these, it's a signal from your body to adjust your hydration habits.

Planning your water intake to ensure you're well-hydrated before the fast begins each day, and rehydrating effectively after it ends, can help prevent dehydration and maintain your overall health and well-being during Ramadan.

Source: Freepik

Ramadan workout plan

Crafting a workout plan during Ramadan requires a blend of wisdom and flexibility, ensuring that you stay active without overtaxing your body. Here's a straightforward and effective Ramadan workout plan that aligns with your fasting schedule and energy levels.

Week Overview:

  • Monday and Thursday: Low-Intensity Cardio & Light Strength Training
  • Tuesday: Rest or Gentle Yoga
  • Wednesday and Saturday: Functional Bodyweight Exercises
  • Friday: Rest or Gentle Yoga
  • Sunday: Active Rest (e.g., a leisurely walk)


After Iftar: This is the prime time for your more energy-demanding workouts like Low-Intensity Cardio and Light Strength Training. Your body has been refueled, giving you the energy to perform exercises without the risk of dehydration.

Before Suhoor: Ideal for gentle yoga or a leisurely walk. These activities are not too taxing on the body and can be a calming way to start your day.

Workout focus:

1. Low-Intensity Cardio: Think brisk walking or cycling. About 20-30 minutes is enough to keep your heart healthy without depleting your energy levels.

2. Light Strength Training: Utilize lighter weights and higher repetitions. Focus on major muscle groups to maintain muscle mass. Sessions can be kept short, around 20-30 minutes.

3. Functional Bodyweight Exercises: Include exercises like squats, lunges, push-ups, and planks. These movements engage multiple muscle groups and can be done in circuit form to keep the intensity moderate.

4. Gentle Yoga: Yoga is not just good for the body but also the mind. It can help you stay flexible and reduce stress. Aim for a 20-30 minute session.


Listen to Your Body: The key to a successful Ramadan workout plan is flexibility. If you're feeling particularly drained on any day, it's okay to skip a workout or switch to a gentler activity.

Stay Hydrated: Make sure to drink plenty of water during non-fasting hours, especially after working out, to rehydrate your body.

Nutrition: Focus on eating nutrient-dense foods during Suhoor and Iftar that will help fuel your workouts and recovery.

Source: Freepik

Tips for nutrition & hydration during Ramadan

Navigating nutrition and hydration during Ramadan requires a blend of strategy and mindfulness. Let's unwrap some essential tips to ensure you're fueling your body optimally during this holy month, especially if you're keeping active.

Nutrition tips for Ramadan

1. Focus on balanced suhoor: Your pre-dawn meal is the fuel that will sustain you through the day. Opt for a mix of complex carbohydrates, like whole grains, which provide a slow-release energy source. Combine these with proteins from eggs, dairy, or legumes to keep you feeling full and to help maintain muscle mass. Don’t forget healthy fats, such as nuts or avocado, for their satiety and energy benefits.

2. Smart iftar choices: Breaking your fast should be a mix of immediate energy and nourishment. Start with dates and water, following the sunnah, to quickly replenish blood sugar and hydration levels. Then, move on to a balanced meal including carbohydrates, protein, and vegetables. Incorporate soups and salads as they are light on the stomach and rich in vitamins and minerals.

3. Portion control: It's easy to overeat during Iftar, but this can lead to discomfort and sluggishness. Use portion control to enjoy a variety of foods without going overboard. Eating slowly and mindfully can also help you better recognize your body’s satiety signals.

Hydration tips for Ramadan

1. Prioritize Water: During non-fasting hours, make water your primary drink to maximize hydration. Aim for at least 8-10 glasses from Iftar to Suhoor, spacing it out to avoid feeling overly full.

2. Limit caffeinated beverages: Tea, coffee, and sodas can be dehydrating due to their diuretic effect. If you consume these, do so in moderation and not at the expense of your water intake.

3. Eat hydrating foods: Incorporate fruits and vegetables with high water content in your Suhoor and Iftar meals. Foods like cucumbers, watermelon, oranges, and berries can help contribute to your hydration.

4. Avoid salty and sugary foods: These can increase thirst during the day and lead to bloating. Try to limit processed foods and sweets, opting for natural sources of sweetness and flavor.


As we wrap up our journey through balancing fitness and fasting during Ramadan, remember that this special month offers a unique opportunity for both spiritual and physical rejuvenation.

Balancing the demands of fasting with a desire to maintain an active lifestyle is not just about discipline; it’s about listening to your body, respecting its limits, and making mindful choices that support both your spiritual and physical well-being.

Embrace the adjustments and modifications suggested here as a way to enhance your Ramadan experience, not as limitations. Whether it's choosing the right type of exercise, timing your workouts effectively, or optimizing your nutrition and hydration, each step you take is a stride towards a healthier, more fulfilling fast.

And remember, Ramadan is not just a test of physical endurance, but a time for spiritual reflection and growth. The discipline you apply to your workout and nutrition regimen can also deepen your spiritual practices, drawing you closer to the essence of this holy month.

If you ever feel unsure, consult with healthcare professionals or fitness experts familiar with fasting to tailor a plan that's right for you. Your journey through Ramadan is personal and unique, and how you balance your physical activities with fasting should reflect what’s best for your body and your spiritual well-being.

Let's approach this Ramadan with a heart full of faith and a plan that supports both our spiritual and physical fitness. Here's to a blessed, healthy, and active Ramadan for all.

Friska 🐨

Read next: 6-day workout split: The ultimate guide in 2024

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