SHOULD I FAST OR NOT? Ramadaan/In2Minds

Right,

Fasting starts tomorrow, and I do not know if I should fast. Beside all the religious reasons about fasting, I only do fast because everyone around me fasts, and I have always agreed with the benefits of fasting.

However, the heat is here, and it will only get hotter, no water means dehydration and brain not functioning as well, and also my fitness regime will get mucked up.

I could close my fast with a nutritious meal at 2:30AM, and then go for my running when the sun comes up? Then I am worried I will just be tired throughout the day... The no water issue is a problem to, because I cannot exercise without drinking water and I cannot afford my brain to be lazy during work either.

I don't practice as a Muslim at all, I shouldn't really call myself one either. But when fasting comes around I have always put in the effort, half of me doesn't want to fast, and the other half of me will suffer from this instilled guilt and feeling of being left out.

Many people fast to lose weight, however with me, I have NEVER lost weight when fasting because of the eating late - this time it will be around 9PM onwards. I don't want to eat at that time at all...

Right now my health, fitness, dieting, and work are my priorities. Fasting will defo get in the way of that.

Decisions, decisions.

Help?

5 Replies

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  • I really suggest that you make this decision for yourself. It's a very personal thing - people who don't necessarily describe themselves as 'religious' can find the big festivals the hardest - especially as it's not just religious but also cultural. If fasting is important to you culturally, then couch to 5k can wait, or you can slow it down (do just 1 or 2 runs a week, i.e. spread 2 'weeks' of c25k over the 4 weeks of Ramadan) (By the way - I wonder what Mo Farah does?). If you want to do a semi-fast, then I have known semi-observant Muslim friends who either fast the first few days/couple of weeks and then give up, or decide to have very plain food and only water, so still keeping the principle to a certain extent. I think you should speak with your family as it's a personal decision. Also there is advice here

    nhs.uk/Livewell/Healthyrama...

    and I found this bbc.co.uk/sport/rowing/3412...

    Hope that helps :)

    I just realised my reply was kind of both to you and Sana786 - you both wrote similar posts! But I think it's Sana who is doing couch to 5k? Maybe I can link you both up by putting Sana's link here healthunlocked.com/nhsweigh...

  • Hi, Aasma-Halima. I can only reiterate Ruth's sentiments. Trust yourself to make the right decision, for your health and your relationships. I'm sure you will. Ramadan is a very special time, I'm not a Muslim , but wishing you Ramadan Mubarak :-)

  • Hi Aasma-Halima,

    I can't add anything more to what Ruth_canal_runner and Carolee13 have said, but I do want to wish you a great week, and I hope that you are able to make a decision that you feel comfortable with, and I would like to wish you a really good week ahead.

    Lowcal :-)

  • I agree with what everyone else has said. I am from South Africa and wow, it is so hot much hotter than here too. (At times it goes up to 40C ) My friends used to fast and I know they found it difficult, some said it was easy. The choice is yours to make but that aside.

    I personally think it would not be wise to work out if you cannot hydrate. That is dangerous.

    Blood sugar levels are important (I am no scientist of course) when you work out like for e.g. at gym or whatever. So that is also a factor to consider. I used to for e.g. in the old days eat a banana before I worked out. I used to work out very hard, say four hours then I would eat afterwards too.

    I hope you find the right decision for you.

  • If you had strong religious feelings and were a practising Muslim who felt that fasting was something that you really should be doing then I'd encourage you to fast.

    But it seems as if you have been brought up to fast, that everybody will expect you to fast and that those around you might think less of you if they are fasting and you aren't. It sounds like the Muslim equivalent of Catholic guilt. In my opinion, that's not a reason to fast if you prefer not to.

    If your health and fitness are your priorities and you want to carry on exercising then I don't see how you can fast. With the long days ahead of us fasting would be challenging enough without trying to work out as well. I was listening to a report on the radio saying that this is going to be the toughest year for a long time.

    It's going to be tricky not fasting if you feel under pressure to conform, but I think that you should be true to yourself.

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