A common question among women’s fitness groups is whether or not it is healthy to exercise during menstruation. While many fears and beliefs about our monthly cycle have changed over the years, whether or not strenuous activity is right for every woman is probably best determined on a case by case basis.
Each woman is different both physically and mentally. Women who have a heavy flow may find that increased activity causes them to bleed even more. Other women have reported a decrease in the length of their cycle and an alleviation of cramps by exercising straight through their monthly period.
While it is never good to bleed too heavily, foregoing a whole week of exercise is unacceptable to most women who have grown accustomed to a women’s workout routine. As a personal trainer, I have found that by having some light exercises to offer to the ladies gives them an alternative to just sitting out the entire week. Instead of running, a brisk walk will keep your body stay active, without jostling your uterus and aggravating your symptoms. Strength training exercises are fine and you can lessen the amount of weights, squats or other exercises that might increase your blood flow.
If you are worried about the messiness of a heavy flow, you might want to wear a tampon when you exercise during your period. Just remember to keep it changed regularly to control bacterial infection. You might want to wear a pair of bike shorts under a pair of loose fitting shorts for protection against spills.
Women have come a long way from the times of our ancestors, when women were cordoned off during their time of the month. However, we still have the blessing of a body that is engineered for childbirth and therefore from the time of puberty until menopause a woman’s body will automatically ready itself for the possibility of pregnancy. Although month after month it’s hard to think of this time as something wonderful, without it, we wouldn’t be much different than our male counterparts.
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