How to Prepare for the Fasting 5K
Fasting during Ramadan during long and hot summer days can be challenging, and you may not be eating and drinking for as long as sixteen or more hours at a time. To ensure adequate nutrition and good health in Ramadan and in preparation for the Fasting 5K, follow these tips:
- Prior to participating, consult with your doctor to see if it is safe and advisable for you to fast and/or participate in the 5K.
- Prepare your body by doing light exercise in the evening hours, such as walking for 15-20 minutes.
- Drinking as much water as possible between iftar (dinner) and suhoor reduces your risk of dehydration during fasting. Try to drink at least 8 glasses of water before dawn and after sundown. Cut down on caffeinated drinks as they have a diuretic effect and promote fluid loss. To help you keep track, fill and refill a water bottle with the equivalent of 8 glasses of water, and be sure to finish it.
- Eat suhoor (a pre-dawn meal) just prior to dawn. Focus on taking in foods that are rich in carbohydrates and protein, fruits or vegetables and plenty of water. For example: an egg on whole-grain toast, crackers with peanut butter, pasta, plain bagels, some orange slices and two glasses of water.
- During the day, stay in cool areas (indoors or in shade) and limit your physical activity. Take a short 15-minute afternoon nap, if possible.
- Avoid gorging yourself when breaking the fast at sunset. Follow the Sunnah: break your fast with dates and either milk, water or fruit juice. After a long period of fasting, you need to bring your fluids and blood sugar level up without overdoing it. After Maghrib, have a healthy and balanced dinner. Do not overeat, and be sure to get in your 8 glasses of water!