If you are a fitness fan like me….then you will be very familiar with how PMS can make you feel when you are trying to exercise!
I tend to describe this feeling as “training in toffee”, where every movement feels like your whole body is stuck in a river of toffee, making any form of exercise exhausting and not that enjoyable!
The main reason for this sensation is the Hormone “Estrogen”, which tends to increase during the last two weeks of your Menstrual cycle and this rapid rise in the Hormone can make you feel sluggish, tired and lethargic… meaning you may feel more motivated to sit in front of the sofa rather than to attempt any kind of sit-up!
But there is a workaround!!…………….I suggest adapting your fitness plan to your Menstrual cycle, which will allow you to keep fit and energised throughout the whole month rather than just for the first two weeks.
Regular exercise has been proven in a number of studies to reduce stress levels, as when we exercise our Happy Hormone “Serotonin” increases and this Hormone controls areas such as our mood, social behavior and temperature regulation, which are all areas that need a positive boost during the last few days of our Menstrual cycle…
So by sticking to your fitness plan or even starting a new one, you can combat the emotional imbalances PMS causes and start a real energised step to reducing your PMS symptoms!
Below is an example of how you can plan your exercise for the whole month, picking high energy sports at the start and moving to more low impact options towards the end of the month:
Example Fitness Plan
Days 1-14 of a typical 28 day cycle
(Classed as the Follicular Phase of the Menstrual Cycle)
Plan to take part in exercises that include anything that is fast paced or intensive such as running, sprinting, interval/circuit training, martial arts or Zumba.
(Classed as the Luteal Phase)
Plan to take part in exercises that include anything that is low impact for example yoga, a slow jog, swimming, cycling or dancing round your living room!
By adapting your fitness plan to your monthly cycle as suggested above, you will notice a reduction in your PMS symptoms, mainly because of all that Happy Hormone being produced…..but remember:
“PMS requires ABM (Action Before Motivation)”
So if you are suffering with PMS, really push yourself to start exercising! I guarantee, if you do and even if it’s just dancing around your living room, you will feel so much better and very glad that you did it!
Happy Training 🙂