We Asked Two Women to Share Their Tips for a Healthier Ramadan

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Photo: Courtesy of Yasmin Baker

It’s safe to say that this Ramadan is unlike any we’ve lived before. Rather than going out and holding big gatherings, people are getting into the habit of enjoying their Iftars and late-night Suhoors at home. While this has meant that people are able to slow down even more during the Holy Month, it’s also thrown many of our healthy habits out of the window.

If you’re hoping to get back into the groove of a healthy lifestyle, try to look at this as a holistic practice that targets mind, body, and soul. Indeed, it doesn’t necessarily have to mean doing a heavy workout everyday, but rather being conscious of the small activities throughout the day that can make a difference. Things like eating right, breathing more, taking a walk, or simply hydrating can impact the routine we set during Ramadan.

With that in mind, Goodness spoke to two fitness insiders to get their advice on how to stay healthy this Ramadan.

Hanan Alshehri, Yoga Teacher

Photo: Courtesy of Hanan Alshehri

Practice Breathing

Start your morning with a short, proper breathing session to create awareness and harness energy through your body. Breathing techniques such as the Nadi Shodhana or alternating nostril breathing will energize your body and help you while fasting. You can also use the Breathe app on your Apple Watch to help you relax and focus on your breathing. The app will guide you through a series of deep breaths, clearing your mind, body, and emotions. The rejuvenation you get by taking a few minutes to breathe while fasting will go a long way.

Practice Yoga

Forty-five minutes to an hour ahead of breaking your fast, connect to your body by practicing yoga or doing light movements and stretching. Find an instructor who you resonate with and can give you a sense of expansion and motivation. You can take part in the live sessions available online or download yoga apps from the App Store to help you on your wellness journey.

Detox from Social Media

While fasting from food and drinks, why not fast from social media as well? Try to detox by spending less time on social media platforms and creating space to do more meaningful activities. You can use that time to learn a new skill or simply do the things you enjoy, whether it’s cooking, listening to podcasts, yoga, or connecting to your faith.

Be Creative

Try using your time to explore what you love and engage in meditative creativity. Take on a project that will bring happiness to your soul. With the time spent at home, you are learning and connecting more to your environment, so why not invest time into making the space you live in more enjoyable and positive by organizing, redecorating, etc.?

Yasmin Baker, Aerialist and Athlete

Photo: Courtesy of Yasmin Baker

Plan Your Meals

Everyone tends to talk about how much food they had during Iftar. It’s important to manage the quality and quantity of what you eat throughout this month and in general. It’s also good to have a light Suhoor; it will allow you to have more energy the next morning and not succumb to cravings when you break your fast.

Stay Active

Ramadan challenges both the mind and the body. Time can go by so slowly, especially during the last few hours before Iftar. To keep you distracted and occupied, schedule a workout an hour or two before eating. During the first week of Ramadan, it’s better to start with low-intensity workouts such as yoga or Pilates. Once your body has gotten used to the changes and fasting, you can move on to more strenuous workouts. While doing any activity, use your Apple Watch to keep an eye on your Heart Rate and monitor how hard you are pushing. It will help keep you in check.