CAN I DO EXERCISE DURING PERIODS? 7 GREAT BENEFITS

Physical activities and periods don’t seem to go hand in hand

isn’t it??

But the answer to the above question is absolute YES!!

Want to know why?

Keep reading…

There is no reason discovered till now which goes against exercising during periods. 

You should remain as active as you can.

Well if you are also one of those who are skeptical about continuing your exercises during your periods then keep reading till the end!!!

We have some of the most amazing facts and benefits that you probably didn’t know before.

EFFECTS OF EXERCISE DURING PERIODS

exercise during periods?

If you are thinking about any negative effects exercise can have, then probably you’ll never be able to find one! 

Exercising during periods is very much safe and it doesn’t have any kind of side effects. 

Having said that, I feel many of us still feel some sort of discomfort at some point.

This discomfort can be due to cramps or just the fear of leakage, but apart from this, there are no negative effects that our body can suffer. It is only going to help us in some or the other way.

JOURNAL OF EDUCATION AND HEALTH PROMOTION experimented on 70 students to see the effects of aerobic exercises on periods.

The duration of this experiment was 8 weeks.

The results of this study prove that women who exercise 3 times a week for at least about 30 minutes experience less painful periods as compared to those who do not indulge in any kind of exercises

CAN EXERCISE MAKE YOUR PERIOD HEAVIER?

NO!!

This is one of the biggest myths I have come across. 

Your flow will be heavy or light, it depends upon several other factors. 

Exercise has no role in period flow. 

The truth is that exercise helps the uterus to shed its inner lining of blood and mucus more smoothly, thus reducing cramps.

It improves blood circulation in the reproductive system which again helps in reducing cramps. 

It is seen that women who exercise regularly experience fewer cramps than those who do not. 

Exercise is not going to make your period heavier but definitely, it is going to make it easier…

 7 BENEFITS OF EXERCISE DURING PERIODS

It is very obvious that we feel tired and lethargic during the first day and the day before the onset of periods, this is because the progesterone and estrogen level decreases during our periods.

We may also feel reluctant to do any kind of physical activity but believe me once you start doing it you will notice the wonders it can do.

Let’s check out 

benefits of exercise during periods

1. HELPS IN RELIEVING CRAMPS

Menstrual cramps are nothing less than monthly monsters and let’s be very honest, it is scary…

But doing light cardio and lightweight training can relieve period cramps

Any kind of physical activity increases blood circulation which in turn helps in relaxing sore muscles. When these sore muscles get relaxed the pain ultimately goes away. 

2. DECREASE PMS SYMPTOMS 

Have you felt irritated with anything and everything before your periods?? 

When nothing interests you?

 every little thing bothers you and you just want to be left alone…

YES???

Yeah! That’s PMS

PMS stands for ‘premenstrual syndrome’ and it can give us a hard time coping up with the mood swings. 

But guess what? 

Exercise and yoga are your saviors here.

THE AMERICAN COLLEGE OF OBSTETRICIANS AND GYNAECOLOGISTS (AOCG) recommends that regular aerobic activities which include a brisk walk, swimming, running, cycling, etc. help to reduce PMS symptoms. 

They also suggest that a woman should not only do exercise during PMS or periods but the aim is to exercise for about 30 minutes most of the week.

Yoga asana like anulom vilom can help to ease out the internal stress through which our body is going during PMS.

Meditation can also help in regulating mood swings. 

3. ENDORPHIN RUSH

Endorphins are known as natural painkillers. 

When we do some sort of physical activity like a workout or cycling etc, our body releases endorphins (feel-good) hormones and other “happy neurotransmitters” including dopamine, norepinephrine, and serotonin in the brain. 

These are some happy hormones which are responsible for our good mood. 

And who doesn’t like to be in a good mood? 

Right?

So start exercising!!

4. ELIMINATE BLOATING

Abdominal bloating occurs when the gastrointestinal tract is filled with air or gas. This is very common during periods.

Some may feel tightness in their abdomen while for some it may feel like a small baby bump.

It can cause uneasiness and loss of appetite. 

A leading health blog HEALTHLINE recommends that exercises help to release trapped gas and gas pain and hence reduce the problem of bloating.

A 20 minutes walk, light exercises work like magic in fixing bloating problems. 

5. LIGHTEN UP MOOD

During periods we all feel irritated and low.

Isn’t it

 Hormonal imbalance has to be blamed here. 

Our body goes through a lot of changes in hormones every month. 

Well, these changes in the body are natural and we cannot do anything about them.

But what we can do is shake hands with our bodies and give them what it is asking for.

Pamper yourself more during periods.

A good sweat session after an exercise helps to elevate mood. It is due to the happy hormones that are released during exercise. 

AMERICAN COLLEGE OF OBSTETRICIAN AND GYNAECOLOGIST proves that exercise helps to reduce depression and mood swings.

Yoga on the other hand relaxes our mind hence we feel good from inside.

A 20 minutes walk in the park with some good music can also help us to be in that good state of mind. 

6. REGULATES IRREGULAR PERIODS

MedicalNewsToday suggests in their article that regular exercise and balanced exercise helps to regulate periods.

Remember excess of everything is bad, exercising too much may interrupt your menstrual cycle.

7. REMOVES EXCESS WATER RETENTION

During exercise we all sweat 

Right?

And sweat is what? Water and some salts…

So basically exercise removes excess water retention by two means

  • Sweating
  • Burning through glycogen energy stores

After a good exercise session, the water weight drops instantly.

However, during this process, some fluids are lost which is vital so it is important to refill our body post-workout to avoid dehydration

You must have seen people drinking energy drinks or ‘post-workout’ drinks, it is due to this reason only.

infographics: can i do exercise during periods

BEST EXERCISES TO DO DURING PERIODS

  • Yoga and Pilates
  • Low-intensity cardio
  • Low-volume strength training 
  • light walking and jogging  
  • Include planks and squats
  • Aerobic exercises
  • Cycling
  • Short lap of swimming (with menstrual cup or tampons)
  • Dancing to your favorite music

EXERCISES TO AVOID DURING PERIODS

There is no such study that restricts us from doing any kind of exercise during periods.

However if you are doing yoga, it is advised to not do ‘headstands’ kind of poses commonly known as ‘inversions’

It can affect the menstrual flow.

Having said all of that I suggest you just listen to your body

If you are feeling tired and fatigued, take a day off.

If you still want to get going with your routine, go easy and slow.

Avoid high-intensity workouts, high-volume strength training, and other exercises that consume a lot of energy. Always listen to your body and don’t push it to go overboard. 

TIPS FOR EXERCISING DURING PERIODS

Has it ever happened to you that even if you are not feeling tired and no cramps, you still don’t feel like hitting the gym?

Yes?

I’ll tell you why

And even if you know the reason I’ll tell you the solution.

Sometimes it is not PMS or any other symptoms that restrict us; it is our consciousness.

And it comes when we are not sure of the product we are using for the flow. 

When we are not comfortable using that product in every situation.

Let me make it more clear for you.

Say for example you are using a sanitary pad, now it may work for you while going to the mall, going out for dinner, and likewise situations

But when you are exercising you are bound to sweat, and we all know sweat and pad is the worst combination we can have

 it can give 

  • Rashes
  • Itchiness
  • Unpleasant smell (of course)
  • And it is a perfect combination of leakage.

I am pretty sure nobody wants that 

Even the best sanitary pads cannot save you from that 

Right?

For another example say you are using a tampon.

Exercise may make your period flow faster, remember, not heavier but faster. So if you are in the gym for one hour or more than that exercising, you may leak. 

So what is it that you can do 

TIP 1

USE A MENSTRUAL CUP

I know this does not appeal to everyone because of a lack of knowledge and myths.

But believe me, guys when I say this, it is by far the best invention for periods till now. 

Some of you may have doubts that menstrual cups are not for teenagers or for those who are unmarried but that’s not true at all.

And all these doubts will go off the table once you start using it

Remember it always looks difficult until it’s done.

It will neither give you rashes nor unpleasant smell and leakage …no chance!!!

So what are you waiting for?

gather your information, choose the best menstrual cup for yourself and get started with it as soon as possible?

The sooner you start the happier your experience will be.

Exercising with menstrual cups on will altogether give you the best experience you’ve ever had before.

Purchase your menstrual cup here: https://bit.ly/3qyIlQR 

 Tip 2

 STAY HYDRATED

Guys, I cannot stress this enough.

Water is the solution to almost every problem. It has unlimited benefits.

If you want your exercising experience to be smoother just stay hydrated.

Now I completely understand that some of you may not like to have plain water often so what you can do is add some flavor to it like lemon or some flavored glucon-d in it.

Tip 3 

START TRACKING YOUR PERIODS

A leading health website Ruby Cup in their article suggests that tracking your period can help in having a pleasant experience.

How?

Our body undergoes hormonal changes during the menstrual cycle so it is not possible for us to remain fully power-packed throughout the month.

It is seen that during ovulation the energy level is comparatively higher than during the menstrual cycle. 

So you can go with high-intensity workouts during ovulation and a little slow during or before periods.

And this can be done using a period tracking app.

CONCLUSION

You should be as active as you can be during your periods. Exercises should be a part of our daily routine because it

  • Improves blood circulation
  • Improves core strength 
  • Improves endurance 

Endurance improves our ability to take pain better.  

Exercises improve the overall feeling of general wellbeing and help develop a positive attitude.

Having said that if your body is demanding a rest take a break and make a comeback. Push yourself a little bit until it feels like motivation but don’t push yourself to the bottom line. 

Listen to your body what it is demanding and act accordingly. Taking a break would not harm but pushing it to the bottom line can leave us feeling more fatigued. 

So don’t overstress yourself but also at the same time don’t remain completely inactive. 

Do let me know your thoughts on exercising during periods

And whether you have started this journey to fitness or not.

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS (FAQs)

Can I do exercise during periods?

Yes, of course you must do it because it has many health benefits. There is no reason discovered till now which goes against exercising during periods. 
You should remain as active as you can.

What are the benefits of exercising during periods?

1. relieves cramps
2. lightens mood
3. release endorphins
4. decrease PMS symptoms
5. regulates irregular periods
6. reduce bloating
7. release water retention

What should we avoid?

It is advised to not do ‘headstands’ kind of poses commonly known as ‘inversions’
It can affect the menstrual flow.
Having said all of that I suggest you just listen to your body
If you are feeling tired and fatigued, take a day off.
If you still want to get going with your routine, go easy and slow.
Avoid high-intensity workouts, high-volume strength training, and other exercises that consume a lot of energy. Always listen to your body and don’t push it to go overboard. 

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