Updated: Nov 13, 2019
Why do us women feel like we are SUPERHEROES one day with all the energy and strength in the world and the next we are all about napping and indulging in chocolate cake!?
It’s actually quite simple, so I won’t over complicate things for you…
Just take note though, although we are all women and we all have a menstrual cycle we are all still very different and you will feel differently compared to someone else. Also on that note, I am very aware that not all women have a regular healthy menstrual cycle with this being said I highly recommend that you get professional help in this regard, if you haven’t done so already.
Okay so let’s break our menstrual cycle down into weeks...
Week One (day 1 -7)
On the first day of your period oestrogen & progesterone hormones are at their lowest & your iron levels are lower too. They do start to increase as the week goes on (taking an iron supplement or eating iron rich foods is recommended). By the end of week one you should feel much more energised and ready to take on the world!
Week Two (day 8 -14)
Energy levels go up as oestrogen & testosterone levels rise in preparation for ovulation. This is where you’re feeling your strongest and strenuous workouts are recommended here, you will be able to lift heavier weights, push your body for longer and withstand a much more intensive workout. #yougogirl
Week Three (day 15 -22)
After ovulation your oestrogen levels drop and progesterone levels increase and this is where napping is essential and cake is okay to have for dinner!? BUT ladies this does not mean that you should not exercise, in fact it’s great to exercise at this time -to boost your mood and to give you the energy kick you need. The difference here is that the energy and strength you felt the last couple weeks is now gone and instead of killing yourself in a tough workout try do low intensity workouts, walks, yoga. Also exercise in the morning before your energy levels drop. #eatthatcake
Week Four ( day 23-28+)
Your body’s level of progesterone & oestrogen dip this week. So you will slowly begin to come back to life whoohoo! Exercising during week four will help with PMS (premenstrual symptoms). Right before your period your serotonin levels may fluctuate significantly which also influences a dip in your energy levels. Exercise stimulates the release of dopamine, norepinephrine, and serotonin. These brain chemicals play an important part in regulating your mood. Raising your levels of serotonin boosts your mood and overall sense of well-being. - Exercise is medicine -
Does my menstrual cycle affect my ability to exercise?
Nope, you can still exercise. But listening to your body is important; don’t push yourself if you are feeling fatigued or weak. Be gentle with yourself and take it down a notch if need be. Remember a nice long walk is very good for you too…
In fact regular exercise is also known to decrease menstrual cramps!
But on the other hand excessive exercise or suddenly starting to exercise after being inactive can have an effect on your period - either causing you to have an irregular period or your period to stop completely. Please chat to you doctor if this is the case.
So Ladies, the bottom line is that it is okay, actually, it is great to continue to exercise during your period, the intensities may change, the type of workouts you do may change but its important that you are moving your body. This is good for you both mentally as well as physically.
Honour your bodies, listen to them, be gentle with them but most importantly remember you are a strong and powerful woman!
Sending you love and health,