Ramadan, already started on  May 6 in most countries this year (2019), is the holiest month in the Islamic calendar. It involves abstaining from eating, drinking, smoking and sexual relations from dawn to sunset, in the hopes that it will lead to greater “taqwa”, or consciousness of God.

Benefits of fasting

Experts have also found that restricting food intake during the day can help prevent health problems such as high cholesterol, heart disease and obesity, as well as improve mental health and wellbeing. By not consuming any food, our body is able to concentrate on removing toxins, as we give the digestive system a rest.

Maintain healthy, nutritious & eating habits

 1. Never skip suhoor – Suhoor is important during Ramadan.  It helps your body stay hydrated and fueled up on energy and nutrients until iftar.

A well balanced meal suhoor contains : 

  • Complex carbohydrate – oats, wheat, grains and other complex carbohydrates are slow-releasing carbs, it helps keep your blood sugar steady and give you feeling fullness.
  • High Fibre food – High fiber food are digest slowly dates, apricot, prunes, vegetables, and fruits. Bananas are good in potassium that help your body hydrated.  
  • Protein – eggs, cheese, yoghurt or meat can replenish your energy.

2.  Cut down sugary and processed food – Avoid heavily processed food contains refined carbohydrates like sugar, and white flour as like normally Ramadan desserts. They are high in fat and low in nutriens.

3.  Break your fast slowly and don’t overindulge – Start with a few dates, and water than wait before your main meal.  Avoid heavy oil and fts in your meal. Make sure you consume plenty of vegetables and good portion of protein and enough carbohydrates.  Eat slowly so that your body can digest the food.

4.  Stay hydrated

Drink at least 8-12 cups of water a day ( 2-3 liter).  Drink plenty of fluids for hydration from the period of Iftar to the time of suhour.  Although juices and milk are sources of fluids, water is the best choice. You can consume other drinks in moderation but beware of sugary Ramadan drinks.

This is the tips how to drink (2-3 liter) in Ramadan.  1 glass = 250mil

1 glass – before suhour

1 glass – after suhour

2 glasses – break fasting (includes juice/ milk)

1 glass – after break fast

1 glass – after maghrib solah      

1 glass – after isya solah

1 glass – after terawih

1 glass – before go to bed

You can also drink in between the time as you need.

5.  Avoid Caffeinated drinks – Caffine such as coffee, tea and colas can stimulates faster water loss, leading dehydration.   

6.  Avoid deep frying – Try to avoid fried foods or those prepared with large quantities of oil.  It it cannot be avoided, reduce the quantities of oil. Alternative recommended oils to use are sunflower, canola and corn oil.  

 7.  Working out

If you can modify your training routine a bit, you will still be able to keep fit with a busy Ramadan  schedule. Try to time your workout so the ending coincides with iftar and you have enough time to shower and break your fast, so you aren’t waiting around totally dehydrated after your run.Take your average workout down a level to make it a little easier on your fasting body. Don’t do any extreme workouts, just something that gets your body moving.

Open Water Diving Course: All-In RM1499 Budget

Have you ever thought of scuba diving as your next family holiday? It was always on my mind for many years and it got materialised when my youngest son reached 10. That is the minimum age requirement for PADI Open Water Diver course. Since all my family members could swim and float reasonably well (part of the requirements), I waited no more and scouted for affordable and suitable arrangement that could fit our schedules. Due to different school holidays and other commitments, the most suitable time was during tail end of national school holidays, which co-inside with fasting month.

Breath Deeply & Slowly

18 meters is the Max Depth for Open Water Divers


Perhentian Island was my preferred destination as I had never been there prior to this and it was one of the closest diving destinations from Klang Valley.  We drove to Kuala Besut Jetty, which was 500 km++ away from Klang Valley. It took us 6.5 hours to drive to Kuala Besut Jetty; so make sure there are at least 2 drivers. We stopped at Masjid Kampung Gemuruh, Kuala Trengganu at 5am for suhoor and after subuh prayers, we continued driving to Kuala Besut Jetty. We took the 8:15 am boat ride to Pulau Perhentian Kecil. As soon as we arrived, we checked into Senja Bay Resort and quickly walked about 150 meters to Anti-Gravity Divers.

Anti Gravity Divers

Anti Gravity Divers

This sharing is based on my experience and does not represent how the course should be like or how others would have experienced.


PADI Open Water Diver Course is a 4 full-days course. We popped by the diving center at 10 am and  were greeted by sweet Ili, one of the instructors at the center. There were 2 instructors assigned to five of us – Ili and Skunk. The course consisted of 5 sections of knowledge development i,e theory, 5 Confined Water Dives (where you learn important skills) and 4 Open Water Dives where you practice diving skills further. We went through 3 sections on the first day, followed by one confined water dive at Romantic Bay. We had to watch 3 videos and went though review questions and quizzes upon completion of every section. There was also a book we could refer to throughout the course. All content, material and exams were in English, so a good command and understanding in English was pretty important for this course.

padi open water course

Other than video, we got to refer to this book


Put Together Diving Equipment

Putting Together Diving Equipment

Our session started at 8:15 am and after briefing, gearing up and buddy check, we went to Sharila Bay for our second dive, followed by our third dive at 12 noon at Batu Nisan, along Pasir Panjang. We were taught how to fix diving equipment and apply important skills in the water which includes clearing masks whilst in the water, entering and exiting the water and sharing regulator,  After the third dive we watched video 4 and 5.

Ready for a Back Roll

Ready to Enter via Back Roll


We continued Open Water 2 at Batu Nisan, Perhentian Kecil,  followed by Open Water 3 at 3 Ruang, Perhentian Besar. We had to perform more skills in the water like putting on the equipment in the water, dropping weights, how to perform emergency ascend and many more. We also had to swim 200 meters and float for 10 minutes.

Hand Language is Important

12 meter Depth only for Junior Open Water Divers

In the afternoon, the instructors went through sections 3, 4 , 5 & the RDP (Recreational Dive)  table with us. Indeed there were loads of learning at this course. We got to learn about equipment, science, safety, communication and how to care for each other. How did my children ages 11-16 cope with the amount of info they had to digest? Pretty ok, as we had very good and patient instructors who made diving enjoyable.

Wear Suitable Attire

Wear Suitable Attire as You can get Too Cold or Hot


The last day was not as strenuous as days before since we only did one dive; Open Water 4, followed by final theory exams. At the Open Water 4, we got to learn how to use navigation compass on the surface and under water. After a late check-out, we took a boat ride to Kuala Besut at 4 pm, after which we drove back home.

Open Water Dive 4

Out for Open Water Dive 4 with Instructors Skunk & Ili


Fasting didn’t have any impact on me, but my youngest and second were dehydrated and exhausted on the third day, so they broke fast. As for my husband who could get sea-sick easily – having food early during suhoor eliminated sea-sickness throughout the course. The heat in the afternoon did make us feel sleepy and lethargic, especially when we had to watch long videos and read books.


Food on the island was reasonably priced and there were many places you could dine in. We broke fast at Senja Bay every night as it was close to comfort, sunset was marvelous and there was a good selection of food to choose from. Here’s a good budget for a person. You can save or spend more based on transport and accommodation preference.

Sunset Breakfast

Sunset at Senja Bay Resort

  • Accommodation : RM290. We got an air-conditioned family room with 6 beds at Senja Bay . Breakfast (suhoor) provided. Do bring insect repellent as you get a lot of mosquitoes at night. You can save more by choosing cheaper chalets, but many come without air-conditioning, fans only.
  • Return Boat Transfer : RM60
  • Food : RM120. You can get a decent meal for RM15-20.
  • Road Transport (Toll & Petrol & Secure Car Park) : RM38. As long as you can get at least 2 drivers, it is much cheaper to drive. If you take the plane, you would need to take a cab from Kota Bahru to Kuala Besut Jetty.
  • Diving Course : RM990 by Anti-Gravity Divers

TOTAL : RM1,498 / USD360

Diving Log

Divers Log – Hope to log more soon!


Clown Fish

Clown Fishes


  • Bring your own water containers. Reduce plastic use and refill your container for drinking water
  • If you like to make your own hot drinks in your room, find out if your room has water boiler. You can bring one if they don’t provide any
  • Beware of insects! Bring along insect repellent.
  • If you wear contact lenses, make sure you bring extras or remove them when required. You’d need to swim under water without mask on and eyes opened for a few meters.
  • Beware of sharp objects and dead corals that might hurt your feet. Bring and wear aqua shoes and get a pair of flippers that would fit your feet with aqua shoes on.
  • Ask preferred Diving Center to make recommendations for accommodation close to the center and assist boat transfer.
Camouflage Scorpion Fish

Beware of Poisonous Life : Camouflage Scorpion Fish

Now that we are a family of scuba divers – we could enjoy our beach vacation more – beyond snorkeling and canoeing. There are so much to explore, see and learn from the marine life!

Other adventure family activities :

The Weekend Runner: Business As Usual

One day I woke up early in the morning after going for a night run with a major headache and feeling extremely hungry. I went to work groggy and half-asleep. I quickly realised that I was dehydrated and did not monitor what I was eating during suhoor. Lack of sleep contributed to the problems too. Major adjustments must be made in order for me to continue with my work out and running routine for the month of Ramadhan.


Just like picking up a skill, saving up, reading, and many other good things in life, long-distance running is built on consistency. Without regular practice and maintenance I will loose the endurance and stamina built over a few months ago. Plus, I have less than 4 months left until I run my first full marathon at Standard Chartered KL Marathon, so I have to make every mile count.



Can’t stop won’t stop!


Some might argue that Ramadhan is a time focus on ‘ibadah’ but I would argue that maintaining a healthy body is a part of being a good, practicing Muslim. As long as you divide your time well, your work out is also considered as an ‘ibadah’ if your intentions are right and you do it for the sake of Allah.


So, after making some adjustments stated in the example below, it is business as usual with my running routine:


1)     Run at night – Just keep in mind to wait at least 2 hours after a heavy meal if you had a heavy meal at iftar. Or run very early in the morning before suhoor. Running when the sun is not out is much more pleasant and you won’t feel thirsty too quickly.


2)     Get enough rest – it is hard to define how many hours of sleep you actually need because it varies between people, so listen to your body.


3)     Hydration – Drink plenty of plain water. I know that some ice cold cendol at the bazar is tempting, but that should not be your priority. If you want to run while still fasting, some runners that I know revolve their running routine around iftar so their work out is complete as soon as it’s maghrib time.


4)     Eat right – getting enough nutrients such as carbs and protein is very important during Ramadhan because you have time for only 2 major meals. Therefore, focus on quality, not quantity of the food, for example, swapping the usual ‘kuih’ for fruits instead at iftar.


Runner - what they think I doI think guy on the right just bought a big packet of mee goreng mamak from the bazar (picture source: Google)


May all of you be rewarded with better performance for the months to come for adjusting your routine to suit the holy month of Ramadhan!


Until next week,

The Weekend Runner.

5 Perkara yang boleh buatkan badan anda kurus di Bulan Ramadhan


Semasa bulan Ramadan inilah anda semestinya fokus mengerjakan ibadah puasa. Ianya bukan untuk menguruskan badan. Tetapi adakah badan anda semakin kurus atau semakin gemuk? Banyak orang makan mengikut nafsu apabila berbuka yang tanpa di sedari segala diet dan pemakanan seimbang terabai dan tidak di beri perhatian. Jangan pula terlalu kurang pergerakkan fizikal semasa berpuasa

Sambil menimba pahala di bulan Ramadhan ini, ikuti 5 tips yang boleh buatkan badan anda kurus,

1. Merancang aktiviti fizikal 

  • Lakukan 15-45 minit senaman ringan seperti berjalan, mengemas rumah dan sebagainya. Ianya baik untuk mengedaran darah semasa berpuasa
  • Kurangkan tidur dan lebihkan solat yang juga merupakan satu senaman. Anda dapat membakar sebanyak 60-80 kalori (mengikut berat badan anda) dengan menunaikan solat 5 waktu atau 17 rakaat.
  • Solat tarawih adalah juga satu kegiatan fizikal yang menguja kekuatan anda. Cuba kirakan berapa kalori dibakar apabila anda mengerjakan solat tarawih 20 rakaat?
  • Tahukah anda, anda dapat membakar 50-80 kalori  membaca selama satu jam? Bacalah Al-Quran di mana-mana jua anda berada. Ia membuatkan anda sentiasa peka dan minda anda juga dapat diasah.

2. Makan mengikut kalori  yang bersesuaian

  • Mengambil sebanyak 1200-2000 kandungan kalori setiap hari
  • Walaupun puasa kita masih perlu mengira secara terperinci kandungan kalori setiap makanan . Jangan lupa dua biji kurma mengandungi sekurang-kurangnya 45 kalori. Kalau anda memakan 10 biji kurma, anda telah mengambil sekurangnya 225 kalori. 
  • Makanlah seperti sediakala. Tidak perlu ditokok tambah pemakanan anda semasa berbuka puasa.

3. Berbuka dengan makanan penurunan berat badan

  • Lebihkan makan buah-buahan yang mengandungi banyak serat dan vitamin
  • Makan makanan yang  tinggi fiber & protin untuk menyeimbangkan kandungan gula, menghilangkan rasa lapar dan berlebihan makan
  • Elakkan makanan yang bergoreng dan berminyak

4. Mengawal kadar pengambilan air

  • Minum dengan kadar yang bersesuaian dengan berat badan
  • Elak mengambil makanan yang masin kerana boleh menambahkan rasa dahaga di siang hari
  • Elakkan minuman berais atau minum secara berlebihan semasa berbuka.

5. Rancangkanlah pemakanan anda

  • Bangun sahur dan mengambil makan & minum yang secukupnya untuk bekalan puasa seharian
  • Membeli dan menyediakan juadah yang berkhasiat dan bersahur dengan kadar yang mencukupi
  • Sama-samalah kita elakkan pembaziran wang dan makanan.

Kalau anda terasa mahu muat memakai baju raya pada bulan hadapan, jangan lupa untuk jaga pemakanan dan kesihatan di bulan ramadhan ini.