Try These Low-Intensity Workouts for Your Periods
So it's that time of the month? And hitting the gym might feel like the last you want to do but squeezing in some low-intensity exercises might be beneficial for you. It can improve your mood, reduce cramps, and manage flow. Other menstrual symptoms like headache, moodiness, back pain, and lower abdominal discomfort might also be alleviated if you do the right exercises regularly! Here are some low-impact exercises that you can do during your periods
Workout to Do During Your Periods
A lot of women ask "What are some exercises you can do on your periods?" The answer to this is everything. You can do barre, pilates, dancing low-impact exercises, low intensity cardio and even light jogging. But it is important to listen to your body. During your menstrual phase, your estrogen and progesterone levels are at their lowest making you feel tired, bloated, and weak. You should rest and eat healthy during this phase, however, there are some exercises to make your mood better, your periods lighter, and your cramps lesser.
Here are a few low-intensity workouts for your period
- Yoga and Stretching
The best low-impact exercise for your periods is yoga type exercises and stretching. Many women feel reduced period pain and cramps after doing stretches. Yoga poses like Child's pose can help with bloating and cramps while cobra pose can battle depression and anxiety.
A cardio workout gets your heart pumping and makes your mood better. You can take walks and even go on an early morning jog to lift your mood and ease period cramps. Dancing and cycling are also great cardio exercises for this time. Aerobics has proved to shorten the length of your period and lighten the flow. We would avoid high intensity running and sprinting as it can increase cortisol which is not good this time of the month. If you are feeling a lot of cramps and abdominal discomfort, you should consider going for a short and low intensity walk to get your blood flowing (even more!). Keep it sweet and simple!
- Resistance Training
If you are someone who enjoys body-weight exercises, then there is no need to skip those. You can do some light-weight lifting (2-5 lbs) to feel strong and energized during this period. Again, there is nothing you cannot do. You just have to listen to your body and go easy on yourself during this time and use less weight than you would in your most energized time, which is likely next week if you are bleeding right now.
Although resistance training isn't necessarily the best workout for reducing menstrual cramps, it can boost muscle mass during the follicular phase of your cycle which is usually towards the last days of your period throughout ovulation when your testosterone is picking back up in a good way (hello libido and minimal bloat).
Exercises to Avoid
While there is no need to skip a workout during your period, it is important to pay attention to what your body is telling you. There is no need to push yourself to the max if your body is telling you to rest. You should make a workout diary according to your cycle phases and squeeze in a workout depending on your hormone levels.
It's best to save heavy-weight training and extensive workouts for your ovulation phase which is when your estrogen is at peak. You will be more energized and up to the task during that phase. Remember, you lose a lot of nutrients while you are shedding. So keep your diet healthy and allow your body to rest with a few simple exercises like walking, yoga, and dancing.