If you aren’t a lady, you may want to click out of this page, because this page is going to be all about :
At the time I am writing this, I am on my second day of zero exercise. Why, you ask? Because I am on my period. I am having a Not Your Father’s Root Beer and am sitting outside in a large t-shirt and comfy jeans.
I have one rule when it comes to my workouts:
Rule #1 Keep It A Lifestyle and NOT A JOB
Exercise, fitness, wellness, healthy eating. These things are not temporary. That is why health and fitness is a lifestyle. You choose to live better.
For me, living better means that the only restrictions in my diet or in my activities come from my boss: ME.
So, when I am on my period, I do not workout for the first two days. The only exception to this is when one my yoga classes falls on days one or two of my cycle which has happened.
I have been known to cancel due to my period completely draining me.
You cannot take care of anyone else until you first take care of yourself.
Heavy to Light
My typical period runs very heavy to extremely light for five to seven days. I used to run from seven to ten days. Now, that I am mid 30s (34 at the time of writing this), the ten day periods are almost non-existent.
During my heaviest days, I need to sit more. Cramps are bad on day one, and by day two, they are dull and just annoying. This is why I do not typically run, cycle, do yoga, or anything else on these days.
When I Do Teach While On My Period…
If I have to teach the first couple of days of my period, I take Ibuprofen and drink hot tea at least 30 minutes prior to class starting. The Ibuprofen settles my cramps, and the tea is comforting (and caffeinated).
I use a few products to collect during my time. The first two to four days, I will use Tampax Ultra Tampons. I know they are not the most environmentally friendly product, but these work well for me.
During the medium to lighter flow days, I use an Eva menstrual cup which is a much more environmentally friendly means of collection.
When I Do Workout During My Period
I do from time to time workout during my period, but I wait until I know my body is ready.
I try very hard to rest first couple of days. Sometimes, I do not workout until the end of my period. It all depends on how my body feels.
I am not on a workout plan. I am not on a diet. EVER. My lifestyle is all me. This health and wellness thing is all about the type of life I want to live. And, I want to live a full life in which I don’t have to say no, but I reserve the right to do so.
Being healthy and well balanced helps me achieve that goal daily. If I take two days or a week off to nurture and baby myself during my period, that doesn’t mean I am off track. It means I am on track with my goal of living the best quality life I can.
It shows that I am taking care of myself.
My Advice a Personal Trainer, As A Yoga Instructor, and As a Woman
Take care of yourself the way you need to be taken care of.
You are always leading by example. If you are hard on yourself, the world will mimic that.
Skipping the workout just because is not the same as skipping the workout, because your period is kicking your ass.
How To Get Back On Track
The cool thing about living a healthy lifestyle is that drinking one beer and taking a couple of days off doesn’t get you off track. The track is built daily.
Living a healthy lifestyle means that even on days when you aren’t up for a 17 mile bike ride or 5k run or one hour yoga session, you can still meditate, walk in nature, write, and do whatever else it is you need to do to feel whole.
There is no track. There is no end goal. You can win daily or not at all. It is up to YOU.