Exercise and the menstrual cycle

     Did you know that your response to exercise can change through the phases of your menstrual month?  Or that your choice of type or intensity of exercise during these phases may play a role in your success (or failure) to lose weight, or to gain muscle tone or fitness?  Its far more true than most realize.  The link in this post will give you both the science and the practical application of this concept.

     The first half of a normal monthly cycle (the follicular phase) is more affected by estrogen than is the second half (the luteal phase), which is often more under the influence of progesterone.  Which hormone phase dominates on any given day of exercise will affect the way insulin, cortisol, fat burning enzymes and muscle building repair chemistry work for you, or on the flip side, potentially  reduce the response of your efforts.   Have you ever been sincerely wrong?  Well, this could be an example, but it doesn’t have to be.  If you are still menstruating, using female phase training is a way to cycle your conditioning and nutritional choices in a way that can take advantage of the monthly fluctuation of hormones in the normal female menstrual cycle.  I like a short but well organized article on this topic by naturopathic physicians Jade and Keoni Teta.  It gives an overview of the protocols one can use, as well as a detailed biochemical explanation of how and why it works (for those who just have to know that stuff…).  For the article, and their associated blog, go to their site at www.metaboliceffect.com or click throught directly to the article at:  Exercise & Menstruation: Training with your cycle (Female Phase Training)

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