Can I Workout on My Period?

It’s a common question with a lot of different answers. Some people believe that you shouldn’t work out on your period, while others believe it’s perfectly fine. So, can you workout on your period?

Benefits of Working Out on Your Period

Working out on your period doesn’t have to be off-limits. While it might be harder to find the motivation to exercise when you’re on your period, there are in fact some benefits associated with doing so. For starters, exercise can help reduce bloating and cramping, making your period more manageable. It can also help provide a distraction from any menstrual discomfort you may be feeling and boost your mood. Let’s take a look at all of the advantages that come with exercising while on your period.

Improve Mood and Energy Levels

In addition to improving physical health, working out during your period can help promote emotional well-being by boosting serotonin levels and improving overall mood. Regular exercise can offer several benefits during your menstrual cycle, such as releasing endorphins that naturally relieve menstrual cramps and other common symptoms. Furthermore, research has suggested that moderate-intensity workouts during the luteal phase of the menstrual cycle (when PMS symptoms are usually most severe) may help reduce pain, improve energy levels and reduce feelings of fatigue. Additionally, exercise has been linked with reducing stress hormones like cortisol which can cause adverse physical and mental effects. Finally, regular exercise can provide an excellent distraction from uncomfortable physical symptoms that commonly occur during a woman’s period such as bloating.

Reduce Bloating and Cramps

Exercising when you are menstruating can help reduce cramps and bloating. During physical activity, endorphins are released that help relax your muscles and relieve pain. The same can be said for intense abdominal workouts such as Pilates or yoga, which helps to stretch and ease tension in the pelvic area while simultaneously creating a sense of energy and vitality. Furthermore, increasing your blood flow can decrease the severity of symptoms like nausea and headaches associated with menstrual cramps. With regular physical action, you won’t just reduce the intensity of discomfort perpetually; you will eventually be able to keep away it entirely by keeping up strong muscles in the reproductive organs. Plus, certain sports like biking or swimming can also clear out excess fluid retention which is usually associated with bloating during your period.

Improve Sleep Quality

Periods can often be uncomfortable and exhausting, making it hard to stick to your usual exercise routine. However, engaging in physical activity during this time of your cycle may actually have beneficial effects on the quality of your sleep. Exercise releases feel-good hormones like endorphins, which help to relax both your body and mind. This allows you to more easily fall into a deep and restful sleep, leading to improved overall health benefits. Additionally, workouts are known to lower inflammation in the body which can help reduce any menstrual cramps you may experience while working out on your period. In turn, this helps reduce the overall discomfort associated with menstruation and allows for a more restorative sleep.

Types of Exercises

Exercising on your period is a great way to help ease period-related symptoms. Many people find that light to moderate exercise can help reduce cramps and bloating, as well as improve mood and energy levels. But which types of exercises are the best for someone on their period? Let’s dive in and explore the different types of exercises that can be beneficial during this time.

Low-Impact Exercises

While you may be tempted to take a few days off from exercising while on your period, this is actually not necessary and can even be beneficial in managing menstrual discomfort. However, it is important to pick the right kinds of exercises. During your period, low-impact exercises such as walking or swimming are advisable as they will reduce the strain on your body while still helping with circulation and releasing endorphins. Low impact aerobic activities are a great way to stay active when on your period and can even help with cramping and other symptoms. Examples of low-impact cardio include:

-Tai chi
-Aqua aerobics

These types of exercises are gentle on the body and still provide enough movement to help release endorphins which may reduce PMS symptoms associated with cramps, mood swings, and headaches

Cardio Exercises

Cardio exercises are great for getting your heart rate up and burning calories. Cardio activities include running, jogging, cycling, dancing, hiking, walking, swimming and more. Depending on your menstrual cycle and level of comfort, light-intensity to moderate-intensity cardio exercises can be a great way to keep your body moving during the days leading up to or during your period. In general, choose activities that keep you at an intensity level where you can maintain conversation for the duration of the activity.

Light cardio includes walking or jogging at a slower pace than usual, taking an invigorating hike in nature or cycling at a leisurely pace while enjoying your surroundings. If you tend to be sensitive to physical exertion during your period days you may want to stick with light cardio until after menstruation is complete. Moderate cardio exercises will have you working up a sweat but still able to carry on a conversation; activities might include dancing classes or moderate jogging or running.

If you’re used to intense exercise but find lighter forms of exercise easier during the time closest to menstruation then reduce the intensity of whatever activity it is that you usually do by half; this will maintain safety but still provide some benefit. As always, listen carefully and trust how your body feels so if something particularly doesn’t feel right then stop!

Strength Training

Strength training is a great form of exercise and has many benefits that can help you improve your overall health, including increased muscle tone, improved physical strength and posture, increased bone density and improved stability. However, many women feel nervous or hesitant to start a strength training routine before or during their period due to the natural hormonal changes in their body.

It is important to know that, although the hormones estrogen and progesterone are at lower levels during your cycle, it doesn’t mean that you can’t engage in strength training. In fact, strenuous exercise is encouraged during your menstrual cycle as it produces endorphins which relieve PMS symptoms like cramps and bloating. During this time your muscles should still feel strong; there usually isn’t much of a difference that you physically notice unless exercising becomes too intense.

The following are examples of strength-training exercises that women can do safely before or during their period:
-Weight lifting
-Bodyweight exercises
-Yoga and pilates
-Resistance bands
-Kettle bell workouts
-Stair climbing
Whether you’re a beginner or a seasoned fitness expert, listen to your body, move with caution and don’t overexert yourself while doing any kind of physical activity while on your period.

Pre- and Post-Workout Considerations

Working out while on your period can be tricky, as your body may be extra sensitive during this time. However, there are pre- and post-workout considerations you can take to maximize your performance and stay healthy. From avoiding certain exercises to changing your fueling strategies, there are a lot of important points to keep in mind when it comes to working out during your period. Let’s explore them in more detail.

Wear Appropriate Clothing

It is essential to wear the right clothing when you exercise during your period. Select loose-fitting and breathable fabrics that are designed to wick away moisture. This type of clothing will keep you cool and comfortable during your workout. Avoid extremely tight or confining garments that can restrict your movements, as they could cause discomfort or even pain while exercising. Additionally, be sure to wear a comfortably supportive sports bra – this will provide extra support and may limit breast soreness. Change clothes as soon as possible after working out, as sweaty clothing can increase irritation and may worsen any PMS symptoms. To further reduce irritation and friction, consider using antiperspirants on the underarms, feet, hands, groin area, and other sweaty areas during workouts.

Hydrate and Fuel Properly

The food and beverages you consume before and after a workout can have a huge impact on how you feel during and after your workout, so it’s important to consider what you eat beforehand. You should drink plenty of water throughout the day and make sure to consume fluids both before and after exercise. Replenishing fluids helps your body recover faster, which can help improve your performance the next time you work out.

Before working out, fuel up with foods that are around 90-120 calories that are high in carbohydrates such as fruits, trail mix, granola bars or energy gels. Eating prior to exercising can help keep your energy levels consistent during a workout. If this is your first time exercising or if it’s been awhile since you worked out consistently, consider starting with intaking lower levels of carbohydrates prior to working out for a trial period. Eating too much prior to physical activity can cause an upset stomach or make you feel sick since rapid movement may move undigested food around in the GI tract resulting in abdominal pain or vomiting.

After physical activity, it is important that nutrition be provided within 15 minutes of finish as this window marks the greatest opportunity for muscles to absorb supplemental nutrition quickly which will help them recover faster post-exercise session. Intaking another 100-150 calories with carbohydrates and some protein will give your body its glycogen stores right back up again (which were used up during exercise). Good sources of protein include yogurt, cottage cheese with fruit, peanut butter toast or eggs on whole grain toast. Now is also a great time for intaking some healthy fats as well–including almonds, walnuts and avocado–to help regulate hormones released during physical activity such as cortisol that affect inflammation in our bodies as well as our emotions!

Follow Up with a Relaxing Activity

To ensure that you have recovered optimally from your workout, follow up with a relaxing activity such as going for a walk, or stretching. Focus on maintaining your breathing and taking deep breaths through each stretch. This will help you to bring down your heart rate and give your muscles time to cool off. Additionally, make sure to drink plenty of water during and after your workout session to avoid dehydration.

Following a post-workout routine can have immense benefits for both mind and body. Paying attention to every detail of exercise, including recovery time such as restorative activities like Yoga or pilates, can help you achieve maximum benefit from the workout session. There are specific yoga poses which can help with cramps caused by the menstrual cycle too! Additionally, try including massages in the post-workout period if possible; research indicates that these can help tremendously in relaxation after workouts along with maintaining mobility in joints which are essential for any athlete’s recovery period.

Safety Tips

Working out on your period can be a great way to relieve period-related cramps and to boost your physical and mental wellbeing. However, it’s important to exercise caution while working out during this time, as it can be an exhausting and painful experience. In this article, we’ll discuss some safety tips to keep in mind when working out on your period.

Listen to Your Body

It’s important to be mindful of how your body is feeling when you are working out on your period. Just like during any other time of the month, it’s important to listen to your body and be aware of the signals it is sending you. If you experience excessive cramping or pain, it may be necessary to take a break and rest for a few days before picking up the activity again. Additionally, if you feel dizzy or lightheaded during exercise, take a break and drink some water to restore hydration levels. Lastly, consider dialing down the intensity of any cardiovascular workouts on heavy flow days—your body is expending more energy than usual so don’t push yourself beyond comfortable limits.

Avoid High Impact Exercises

During menstruation, physical exercise is often beneficial to boost one’s mood, reduce discomfort, and relieve heavy cramps. However, it is important to understand which types of exercise are safe to do while on your period. During this time, stick with low impact exercises such as walking and swimming. High impact exercises like running and jumping should be avoided due to the pressure they put on the pelvic area-where most of the discomfort during a period occurs. Additionally, doing moderate physical activity at an intensity level where you can still carry a conversation may alleviate some menstrual pains as well.

Not only does high impact exercise add more pressure onto the pelvic area and increase potential soreness in this area, but also raises overall body temperature which can cause further discomfort due to fluctuating hormones during the menstrual cycle. Working out too much or doing high intensity workouts may disrupt hormone levels further and throw off your menstrual cycle – leading to a heavier flow or lengthy duration of your period. Moderation is key when it comes to working out while on your period in order for you safely manage any symptoms associated with it while also gaining mental benefits from exercising!

Avoid Heat and Saunas

Exposure to heat can increase your risk of developing a headache or feeling lightheaded during exercise. Both heated pools and saunas should be avoided while on your period. If you enjoy them regularly, it is best to wait until after your flow has finished. Heat exposure should also be limited during heavy menstruation, as this can increase fluid retention and bloating.

Do your best to keep cool during exercise by staying hydrated and wearing breathable, light-colored clothing that wicks sweat away from the body. You can also maximize air circulation by working out in well-ventilated rooms or areas with circulating fans, and taking frequent breaks in cooler environments. Room temperature yoga or outdoor exercise on a mild day are some good alternatives to consider if you’re trying to avoid heat exposure.


In conclusion, when it comes to working out on your period, there is no right or wrong answer. It all depends on the individual and what you are comfortable with. Some women feel more energized during their time of the month and use it as motivation to get in a good workout. Others may find that their symptoms make it too difficult to exercise. The most important thing to remember is that if you do decide to work out, listen to your body and give yourself rest periods if needed. Always remember to drink plenty of water, eat healthy foods, and warm-up before engaging in any physical activity — these tips will help make for a safe and successful workout routine both during and between periods!

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