Feb 26, 2024


By Dean Hodgkin – Health & Fitness Consultant

Dean Hodgkin, our In-house international fitness expert voted as Best International Fitness Presenter at the One Body One World awards in New York and a three-time World Karate Champion offers our readers advice and support on anything fitness.

Before Your Visit

Your pre-dawn meal should include whole grains like oats or whole wheat bread for sustained energy release and eggs, yoghurt or cheese for protein. If you can add vegetables, you will also begin to cover your vitamins, minerals and fibre requirements. Also, hydrate in the morning and it’s worth considering temporarily cutting out coffee and caffeinated fizzy drinks as they are diuretics ( i.e. they encourage you to pass water – the opposite of what you need at this time)

In the Gym

Clearly, it isn’t possible to exercise as you usually do when you’re fasting, but you don’t need to stop altogether, as you risk losing the many health and aesthetic gains you’ve made. The key is to review your existing exercise habits and build in contingency plans that mean you can stick to your routine and still work towards your goals. Intensity can be reduced through downward tweaking many variables such as time, distance and speed for the runners and cyclists but number of sets, reps, increased rest periods and lower weights for those following strength training protocols.

In the Thermal Spa

Swimming, hot baths and use of heat rooms are all permissible activities with the simple caveat that you keep exposure times to short, intermittent periods. Adequate rehydration before arrival will be of great benefit here but in all cases it’s important to ‘listen to your body’, any dizziness, breathlessness or fatigue being signs to cease and rest. Ideally, if possible, restrict these activities to non-fasting hours so you can ensure hydration levels are adequate.

In the Restaurants

Remaining active on empty can be particularly challenging, not to mention uncomfortable, so as soon as your fast ends opt for a healthy snack (eg piece of fruit, granola bar, toast and honey) and then refuel fully afterwards if exercising in the evening. In addition to recovery after your workout, your main meal needs to take into account stocking your energy stores for the next day, so this is not a time to cut calories, load your plate with plenty of carbohydrates such as whole wheat rice, quinoa and sweet potato plus healthy fats such as oils, avocados, and nuts. Don’t forget to constantly sip water from sunset to slumber.


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