Exercise and Hormones: How to Exercise Through your Cycle

Me Walking on the Beach

It’s so easy to point a finger at your hormones when you feel outta sorts. I know, I have done it many a time. Unstable moods, fatigue, bloating, cramps, acne, just plain cranky… you know the list. Imagine a month with stable moods, minimal period cramps, and thinking to yourself, huh that was a smooth process this month. Isn’t that any women’s dream? Not bursting into tears when someone else ate the last square of chocolate or chewed too loudly… oh the joys. What if I told you this is possible, and that your exercise routine actually plays a role in this? Keep reading to find out how to exercise through your cycle to work with your hormones.

Ok, what has exercise got to do with my hormones?

Oh, movement is so important. However, before you go and smash your HIIT session at the gym we need to talk about how we can tailor your exercise routine to work with your hormones.

Lady Running

Seriously, how you exercise through your cycle plays a huge role in supporting and balancing your hormones.

The truth is that intense cardio and prolonged workouts throughout the month can create stress on your adrenal system which impacts your reproductive hormones. This directly impacts the balance of your hormones and can lead to those pesky symptoms.

So, your hormones run in a monthly cycle called your infradian rhythm. Basically, your hormones ebb and flow throughout the month giving you 4 distinct hormonal phases. It is to our advantage to work to the strengths we naturally have in each phase. So now, let’s break down the most supportive movement we can be doing in each phase, to effectively exercise through our cycle.

Lady doing HIIT

Exercise WITH your cycle

Let’s use the end of your menstruation phase as a starting point. Right after your period, you go straight into the Follicular phase. In this phase, your body naturally has a lot of energy. This makes it an ideal time for high-intensity and cardio exercises.

After ovulation, your energy levels start declining as you move into the Luteal phase. This is the phase just before you start your period. Now, as your energy levels start dropping it’s recommended to move to a more moderate-intensity exercise. With a focus on resistance training and low-impact exercises. This is because during this phase your body has a natural higher resting cortisol rate, cortisol is your stress hormone and intense cardio workouts will add additional stress on to your body

Then of course, during menstruation, this is the best time to focus on doing restorative yoga flows and taking long walks. Protecting your energy during this time by taking it a bit slower is the most supportive thing you can do for your body and your hormones. It will result in your hormones supporting you through the month to come.

Lady walking on gravel road surrounded by trees

Of course, becoming more aware of which form of movement supports your hormones and protects your energy goes hand in hand with your nutrition. Check out our blog on What to Eat to Beat the PMS Blues to start working with your hormones.

We have so much control over how we feel and our energy levels. It all starts with becoming aware of the major role that your lifestyle plays in how you feel. And to start taking small steps towards becoming the best version of yourself and feeling full of energy and vitality.

ross legged yoga stretches


Vitti, A., 2020. Biohacking the Female Body to Feel Amazing, Kick More Ass, and Have More Sex [Interview] (29 January 2020).

Vitti, A., 2020. Female Biohacking: Hormone Balancing, Morning Routines & Time Management with Alisa Vitti [Interview] (22 December 2020).

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