“You should be nice to your cycle”. “What”, you might say. If you are that kind of woman who can’t stand having your period, who goes nuts during it, you should review your concept. Why that? Well, having your period is part of your nature as a woman and it doesn’t matter if you are heterosexual or homosexual. After all, your menstrual cycle is necessary to help you listen to your body and then plan for and make choices about your mood, exercise wellbeing and sex life. Also, leaning how your cycles function can help you check if your hormones are balanced or not, how the health of your bones is doing, your thyroid, and metabolic wellness.
And how you start listen to your body when it comes to cycle? Taking notes! Since each body is different, cycle can usually last 28 days, but also could vary anywhere from 21 to 36 days. The best way is to observe yourself. Nowadays there are amazing apps you can count on to help you keep tracking on your periods, my favorite app is “Clue” . You don’t have a regular cycle? That is also a sign of your body saying that is something not balanced. ;)
This amazing video created by Glamour magazine shows in 2 minutes how a cycle of 28 days works. Besides the funny parts of it, it really helps you understand better how you can take advantage of each moment of it. Here it goes a summary of this great video:
– Periods starts. Low estrogen = fatigue
- Uterine contractions = cramps
- Good time to exercise gently
- Periods ends
- As estrogen increases, energy rises, you feel upbeat = good time to power through it!
- If your estrogen up your face looks more symmetrical, your skin glows
- With testosterone up = you are the top of the game, you are quick on your feet, good time to take initiative.
- Estrogen peaks = you are at your sexiest and most fertile = orgasms are more intense and attainable.
- You are optimistic and social = good time to get out there
- Ovulation = ovary releases an egg, if not fertilized, dissolves
- Sudden hormones changes, may intensify emotions and tiredness
- Estrogen drops, testosterone and progesterone surge
- Excess oil = breakouts and sensitive skin
- Good time to eat healthy
- High progesterone can cause bloating and lowered libido
- Don’t feel like you have to do it all
- Despite possible sluggishness conquer PMS and boost serotonin with exercise to ease breast soreness
- Cut down on caffeine, reduce sugar intake, stay hydrated and…
- To do it all over again
Your Cycle x Workouts
Have you ever thought that during each stage of your cycle you can do different kind of physical activity depending on how your energy and mood are? Take advantage of having more or less energy and therefore, help your PMS and mood swings.
1 – 7 days (time you have your period):
You feel more tired, but there is no reason to not exercise. But go gentle with your body (and mind) and find activities with low-cardio, like yoga (low pace classes), walking and even swimming. The contact with the water is amazing. Just use a tampon and you are fine!
8 – 14 days (after your period):
If your testosterone and estrogen levels beginning to rise you will more opportunity to sculpt lean muscle mass (because of testosterone) and build connective tissues that bind your muscles to your bones (because of estrogen). Then, this is the perfect time to tone up. Note: if you take pill (topic for tomorrow) that might not be true for you, since oral contraceptives can interfere with testosterone. During this period try HIIT workouts, strength training, crossfit, indoor cycling, boxing…
15 – 21 days
After the amazing energetic period above, this moment your estrogen levels tank and your energy goes the same way, also it is a moment that you are extra susceptible to ligament and tendon tears and other injuries. Go easy! Try barre, pilates classes and low-key yoga. You can do some running, but try slow-and-steady pace.
22 – 28 days
Now it is time for cramps, breast tenderness, headaches….and that is a big reason to sweat!! You don’t need to go hardcore like the 8-14 days period, but you can try some yoga, not a low-key class, you can go for vinyasa or power yoga, cycle indoor, Zumba class.
So, there is no excuses to not exercise, right?
The enemy (!): Birth control pill
Would you take a pill that says you will have weight gain, an inflamed body, risk migraines, depression, gallstones, hypertension, cancer, and even death without warning? Would you still take a pill that can interfere with your hormones to a point that your daily and monthly rhythms are no longer operational? But even with all these side effects there are millions of women all over the world using birth control pills.
And there is also another important aspect when it comes to birth control. We stop listening to our body and mood shifts. All those ‘unpleasant” signs (cramps, mood swings, acne) they are telling you that something is wrong with your body and they’ve being hidden from you. Knowing them is the real power within you!
When you start learning more about your hormonal imbalance, listen your body more, you gain that power back, and this is empowerment!
Do you take pill for hormonal imbalance, PCOS or/and endometriosis? You can treat with diet, herbs, massage and meditation.
Do you take pill to prevent for an unwanted pregnancy? Condom and other natural ways like track your cycle on a calendar, monitory your basal body temperature, check your cervical mucus every morning….
Share with your friends and let’s change the world!