As you move through your menstrual cycle your hormones, energy levels and metabolism are changing, meaning that exercise will affect your body differently throughout the stages of your cycle. At BKA Cub we tailor workouts to your cycle so that you can move with your body, not against it. So...
What is Menstrual Cycle Syncing Fitness?
Both men and women have a 24 hour circadian rhythm; our body's internal clock allowing us to carry out essential daily functions. However, women also have an infradian rhythm (typically 28 days) where our hormones fluctuate in line with our menstrual cycle. During this monthly cycle, our hormones affect our energy levels and how our bodies react to exercise.
Currently, we're encouraged to move in accordance with male hormonal fluctuations over the 24 hour circadian rhythm, however we can reap so much more by moving in line with our longer infradian cycles. At BKA Club we believe in utilising the power of your female energy and moving with your hormones to achieve the most from your movement, both mentally and physically.
During the first half our of your menstrual cycle, energy is one the rise and reaches peak at ovulation, whilst your metabolism is slower. This is the perfect time to hit up a high intensity resistance or high energy cardio session, as to best utilise your energy, build lean muscle and boost your metabolism. However, during the second half of your cycle energy levels are on the decline and your metabolism tends to be faster; a high intensity workout here can stress your body causing your body to store fat and not build lean muscle as effectively. Not ideal. That's why we encourage syncing your workouts in line with your hormones.
What are the phases of my cycle?
Your cycle starts on the first day of your period and runs through until the final day before your next bleed. This can be split into four phases; menstrual, follicular, ovulatory and luteal. Let's start with follicular, as this is when your bleed ends and hormone levels are on the rise.
When? Begins when your bleed ends.
What's happening with my body? Estrogen and FSH hormones are on the rise to initiate the renewal of the uterus lining and stimulate the egg follicles to mature.
How long does this phase last for? Typically 7-10 days.
Energy & Metabolism? Energy is increasing and your metabolism is slower.
Ideal Movement? Cardio training and high intensity exercise to utilise energy and boost your metabolism.
When? After your follicular phase when the mature egg is released.
What's happening with my body? High estrogen and LH levels cause one egg to fully mature and be released from the fallopian tube to travel to the uterus. There's a rapid surge and decline of testosterone here.
How long does this phase last for? Typically 3-4 days.
Energy & Metabolism? High energy and slow metabolism.
Ideal Movement? High energy workouts and resistance training are ideal here, as you have lots of energy to burn and your body will build lean muscle effectively.
When? After the ovulatory phase up until the day before your period starts.
What's happening with my body? Estrogen levels continue to rise for the first few days of this phase, promoting uterus lining growth but progesterone is on the rise. Progesterone signals the body to keep the womb lining in place and for FSH and LH to stop being produced, therefore all three reproductive hormones then start to diminish.
How long does this phase last for? Typically 10-14 days.
Energy & Metabolism? Energy is still fairly high for the first few days of this cycle but then begins to decline. Your metabolism is faster during this phase.
Ideal Movement? We recommend lower intensity and resistance training, as well as flexibility work. If you want to continue with the luteal workouts for the first few days of these phase then absolutely go for it.
When? From the first day of your period up until the last day of bleeding.
What's happening with my body? As progesterone levels drop off the uterus sheds the endometrial lining, which is what we know as menstruation or your period.
How long does this phase last for? Typically 3-7 days.
Energy & Metabolism? Hormone and energy levels are at their lowest and your metabolism is still working faster (hence why some women get super hungry around their period).
Ideal Movement? Intense exercise can be detrimental to the body here, by triggering fat storage, muscle wastage and stressing your CV system. We recommend restorative movement, slow flows and rest.
Ready to start cycle syncing your workouts?