Fasting during the day for an entire month is a very difficult task. But for Muslims, it is a requirement of their faith, and one that they indulge in very willingly.
The Muslims folks, who lift though, should not compromise their commitment to fitness and it does not have to be diminished by their religious obligations. You can fast and still maintain your muscle mass. It’s a delicate balance though, but you can win it by following these insightful tips.
Tweak Your Training Schedule
Your training routine should change to be consistent with your energy levels. The idea is to maintain your strength without experiencing a dip in muscle mass. For this, your muscles have to be constantly stimulated, but just enough to make do with your reduced energy levels. Tweaking your routine by reducing your intensity and focusing on compound exercises is the right way to do it. The ideal time to train is before breaking your fast. This time is best as it will allow you to commit your post-workout hours to nutrition and rest.
Avoid training during the day, whenever you can, and avoid cardio as well. Water is unarguably the most important thing to take during these activities, and since you are not allowed to drink water, you should not train or do cardio either. Otherwise, you will run the risk of dehydration.
Concerning your Diet
Since your eating is confined to the nightly hours, you have to make the most of it. Meeting your dietary requirements at this time requires a bit of effort. Simple carbohydrates and saturated fats should be completely disregarded. Instead, only complex carbohydrates, proteins and generous servings of vegetables should make it to your plate.
Consume plenty of water too, and dairy if you are not intolerant. It is easy to overindulge after iftar but resist the temptation, despite your instincts and hunger. Instead, subdivide the meals into servings throughout the night. Eating every three or four hours until you begin your fast again is the ideal way. The heaviest meal should be in the morning, and should be rich in complex carbs and protein that are slow digesting.
The challenge of satisfying the minimum calorie goals is understandable, but you should not take the road of least resistance. Instead of taking high fat foods, you can meet the difference by taking appropriate supplements. There are many compelling offerings, from whey, when you need a quick protein source, to micellar casein, which gels and digests for much longer. Post workout supplements can be traded in for actual meals, as they offer more in terms of essential nutrients, minerals and vitamins.
Keep in mind that the overall goal during the month of Ramadhan is not to put on any new muscle, but rather to maintain it. The pitfall to avoid it is putting on fat, which is very easy when you are intermittently fasting. But with a healthy diet that is comprised on healthy, whole meal options, you should be able to maintain that shredded look.
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