Working out in periods is not easy for everyone. Girls can imagine the cramps, backache, etc., that they have to face every month. If you can tolerate them, then you should surely go for a quick workout. But, the story doesn’t end here. Let’s see how well do period and exercise go together and some benefits and tips.
All of us have different bodies, and so they react differently. Exercise can help you manage symptoms like bloating, fatigue, headache, etc., during periods. However, periods aren’t similar for everyone. So, there’s no one size fits all approach here that can solve your dilemma.
Let us dig a little deeper before drawing any conclusion.
Period and exercise: Benefits-
- Can reduce cramps: Periods become less painful with improved blood circulation. So, workouts can help you improve blood circulation and reduce cramps. A 15-minute walk can also relieve pain. A study also shows that people who work out 30 minutes a day for three days a week experience relatively lesser pain. Opt for light exercises during periods.
- Welcome endorphins: I know how challenging it is sometimes in periods to manage mood swings. But, exercise can lift your mood and can help you manage all those irritability and anger issues. Here exercise helps you in two ways. Exercise reduces stress hormones like cortisol. It also stimulates the production of endorphins which are natural pain killers and mood elevators.
- Regularise periods: No matter how much we complain regarding our painful periods. All of us want them to be regular to avoid any period-related health issues. Workouts can help you regularise them and can help you get on track. So, spend few minutes a day exercising.
- Eases premenstrual syndrome: Premenstrual symptoms often affect our mood, reduces work productivity, impacts concentration levels and sleep cycles. So, exercise can help you deal with them. It also reduces extra water retention and bloating.
- Healthier choices: Cravings during periods can take you to unhealthy options. But, it is advisable to have a healthy balanced diet during periods. Almost all of us make healthy choices after workouts (or maybe a few) 😛 So, exercise and reward yourself with a healthy meal.
Do or not to do?
Now, as we have few benefits listed here, it’s clear that there’s no such harm in doing them. But, keep few points in your mind.
- You can go for mild aerobic exercises during periods. Avoid exercising if you have severe pain. It is always advisable to consult your doctor in such cases.
- There’s a word of caution: Overexersing is bad as one can even miss their period in such cases. So, if you have started an intense workout routine and start missing periods, consult your doctor.
- Take a break if you’re tired. Stay hydrated and avoid overdoing.
- Not all exercises are beneficial for periods. So, we have listed the recommended ones here.
Best exercises during period:
- Walking: Walking is probably the best exercise you could do during periods. A brisk walk for 30 minutes will surely improve blood flow, and you can burn few calories too.
- Yoga: Nothing can calm you like yoga during periods. Few breathing exercises and stretches can help you stay calm. Some yoga poses are proven to improve blood circulation. Avoid inversion yoga poses.
- Running: Now, this one is not easy for all, and you should do this only in the latter days of your period. You can opt for walk-run intervals too.
- Stretches: Simple stretches can help you ease pain by relaxing your muscles. Take a deep breath and relax.
- Swimming: Few girls prefer swimming as they also have the potential to reduce cramps. You can go swimming during periods with tampons or menstrual cups.
Takeaway: How well do period and exercise go together?
- Listen to your body. Though we have many benefits of exercising but, that doesn’t mean you neglect your body.
- Have a healthy balanced meal during periods( and all other times too). Stay hydrated.
- Avoid strenuous exercises and opt for something light. Don’t overexercise.
- Take proper rest during periods. Also, if you’re working out, take a break in-between.
- Try options like a hot bath and heating pad to relax your muscles and improve blood circulation.