When many women start female fitness programs that encourage them to exercise, they do it for many reasons and with different goals in sight. For some, it’s weight loss, they wish to drop some of the extra pounds they picked up during a short vacation, or they want to be able to fit into a new dress they got. For others, the goal is to keep fit and keep their heart healthy, while other women engage in exercise to tone their bodies or help them build muscles.
You would be hard-pressed to find a woman that engages in exercise because they want to tackle menstrual cramps. As a matter of fact, many women don’t know that exercise is very helpful during period pains, and for the few that know, they aren’t very sure of the kinds of exercise to engage in.
In this article, we will go over a few facts about menstrual cramps and exercise you should know as a woman practicing female fitness and the types of exercises you should add to your fat loss or muscle growth routine if you want to deal with the pains that come with menstrual cycles. Let’s get into it.
How exercise helps with period pains
When young women get to the ages of puberty, they start to experience menstruation, which is the monthly flow of blood that happens for a few days. When this happens, it usually comes with pain, called Dysmenorrhea or menstrual cramps. Up to 90% of young women experience severe pain during this time, and for some, it could lead to absence from work or school. When this happens, some doctors usually recommend birth control pills because they can help keep hormone levels more consistent and, for this reason, can help take away period pain.
However, there is a better and more consistent way of alleviating the pains that come with periods: exercise. Many women have reported less and less period pain after involving themselves in female fitness programs and exercise. How does exercise do this? Exercise releases endorphins in the brain. Endorphins are the “feel good” chemical, and it acts as morphine for the body to calm severe pains.
Some facts about exercise and cramps
- Exercise gives you more power and strength
Exercise makes it easier to deal with cramps that come with menstrual cycles by giving you the strength to help you cope with period cramps. Due to the low level of female hormones during this period, it is easier for you to gain strength and power by exercising during the first few days of your menstrual cycle.
- Exercise helps you release endorphins
As stated earlier, exercise makes you feel good by releasing endorphins and beta-endorphins in your body. These endorphins are the internal opioids in the body, and they help with pains, both short-term and in the long run. Many female fitness gurus won’t tell you this, but exercising is the natural equivalent to getting high or dosing yourself with morphine, so you don’t have to deal with unnecessary pains.
- Exercise helps you improve your mood
It is easy to feel depressed, angry, and unsettled during periods, especially because of the pains that come with it. Thankfully, our trusted routine helps with more than just fat loss or muscle gain. Exercise releases endorphins in the brain, which can improve your overall feeling of goodness and wellness, just as a depression drug does. So the next time you have mood swings and are struggling with depression during your menstrual cycle, consider doing some light exercises before you take those pills to make you feel better.
- Exercise helps reduce symptoms that occur before menstrual cycles
Some women feel fatigued and have mood swings some days before their menstrual cycle start, and it is difficult to shake off. Having a consistent female fitness exercise routine can help them deal with these symptoms or reduce them considerably.
Types of Exercises to do during your period
During your period, there are different types of female fitness exercise routines you can engage in to help you through the process. These exercises may not be part of your typical exercise routine, but they can help with muscle growth and fat loss as well. Some of these exercises are:
- Forward bend
This is achieved by standing with your feet together and arms by your side, then sinking to the floor to use your arms to touch your heels. If you can’t do this with your legs straight, bend your knees slightly to allow your palms to touch your legs properly. When you get to that position, hold for one minute before standing up.
Light walking or cardio exercises are good for weight loss, but they can also help women dealing with menstrual cramps. When doing these types of exercises, you have to be careful not to do too much, especially if you aren’t used to doing a lot of this kind of exercise normally. Try to reduce the intensity of the workout if you find it difficult to cope with.
High-intensity Interval Training is a very strenuous exercise routine, and it is very common in the female fitness world for women whose main goal is fat loss. Doctors suggest that due to a hormone shift during periods that make fuel more accessible to the body to be burnt, it might not be a bad idea to engage in HIIT. However, do this only if you are sure you can handle it.
Female fitness is a necessary part of your life as a woman, even if you aren’t looking for fat loss or muscle gain. It is even more important during your menstrual cycle, as it can help you deal with period pains that come with it. It is important to note that you should start exercising before this time every month so that your body gets used to consistent exercising before it is time to engage in it. Also, exercising consistently will have a good long-term effect on your body, especially when you have to deal with period cramps.