Tips to keep your energy up in the last 10 days
The final stretch:
As we enter the final few days of Ramadan, and the most blessed nights of the entire year, most of us are well and truly used to fasting throughout the days. However, there may be times that you still find it difficult to go without food and water. Here are some practical ideas to heighten your physical energy and move closer to Allah (SWT) during the final few days and ensure you make the most of the last 10 nights.
The challenge of fasting
The discipline of fasting demonstrates our devotion to God. It is spiritually and physically cleansing, yet at times you may feel:
- Low energy levels while you work or care for family
- ‘Hangry’ – a word derived from hungry + angry
- Parched and thirsty with a dry mouth
- Tempted from food aromas
1. Eating a healthy Suhoor
The Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) reminds us that Suhoor, the pre-dawn meal before fasting, is a blessing:
“Have Suhoor for in Suhoor there is blessing.”[Bukhari]
Try to eat a balanced meal of protein, carbohydrates and healthy fats to provide good nutrition throughout the day. Also, it is important to drink plenty of water to stay hydrated. Remember, we may often mistake hunger for thirst!
2. Breaking fast gently
After going all day without food and water, it may be tempting to eat everything in sight. Overeating is not healthy, and it can be counterproductive to fasting when we are seeking closeness to Allah (SWT) by curbing some of our desires.
“When one of you breaks his fast, let him break it with dates for they are blessed. If they are not found, let him break it with water for it is pure.”[Tirmidhi]
3. Enjoying Iftar
Iftar (the meal taken after sunset) is a time for celebrating with family, and bringing communities together.
A healthy, substantial iftar should include items from all the food groups, as well as water, to provide energy until dawn.
The holy month is the perfect time for feeding others and sharing your blessings with them. It might be as simple as inviting your neighbour or someone you do not know well for iftar. You can also donate food to people in hardship – an act which is highly pleasing to Allah (SWT), especially in the holy month of Ramadan.
Remember, as you sit down to break your fast with family and friends, make sure to take a moment to reflect and give thanks for the many blessings of Allah (SWT), including having the means to satiate your thirst and hunger and that of others.
4. Fasting isn’t just about refraining from food and water.
Fasting with your mind, body and soul will give you more focus and energy. Apart from food and water, it is compulsory to fast from impure thoughts during Ramadan, such as:
- Fasting from anger
- Fasting from gossip
- Fasting from bad language
- Fasting from lying
When faced with such thoughts and feelings, try to stay patient and ask Allah (SWT) to guide you.
5. Asking Allah for help
Instead of relying on willpower to stay energised, ask the Almighty and Merciful Allah (SWT) for help.
Make du’a (supplications) to God, and He will hear you. Here is a helpful du’a to recite if you feel yourself getting upset or angry while fasting:
إني صائمٌ ، إني صائمٌ
Innee saa’im, innee saa’im
I’m fasting, I’m fasting. [Muslim]
This can be said out loud, or in silence.
6. Focusing on Tawwakul
Increasing Tawakkul (complete trust in God’s plan) keeps us on course – even when the going gets tough. Below is a wonderful reminder that Allah (SWT) gives us everything we need:
“It is you [alone] we worship, and it is you [alone] we ask for help [in each and every thing][Qu’ran 1:5]
May your fasting be blessed
Ramadan fasting is a way to strengthen our relationship with Allah SWT through discipline and devotion. It is a time for physical renewal and spiritual purification. We wish you and your family rich blessings for all your fasts, and may your pious efforts to meet fasting challenges be well rewarded.