Do you feel like lying in bed all day when you have your period? If you do, try getting up and moving instead. It might be the last thing you want to do, but exercising can make you feel a lot better and can greatly ease your menstrual cramps.
It is best if you engage in exercise all the time, and continue it before and during your period.
Why does exercise help menstrual pain?
Brain Chemicals Make You Happy and Pain-Free!
You probably already know about endorphins, the brain chemicals that exercise can help release in your brain. You might know that they can make you feel better and improve your mood. Well, they can also relieve pain in the body, including menstrual pain.
Exercise and Menstrual Chemicals
More specific to menstrual cramps, prostaglandins are a type of chemical your body releases during your period. These chemicals cause the muscle contractions that are a part of your menstrual pain. Exercise helps burn these chemicals faster, reducing the pain from the contractions.
Exercise Helps You Maintain a Healthy Weight
Being overweight or obese makes you more likely to experience period cramps. Exercise, including both aerobic exercise and strength-training, is one of the best ways to maintain your weight.
Exercise helps your body burn calories during the workout. Plus, the added muscle you gain through exercise helps your body burn more calories throughout the day. Controlling your calories is one of the main ways to maintain your weight.
It is best to do a combination of diet and exercise to lose and maintain your weight.
What Kind of Exercise Should I Perform for Menstrual Cramp Relief?
The best type of exercise you can do for menstrual cramping is aerobic exercise. This can include anything from walking and jogging to dancing and swimming. Make it an activity that you enjoy.
Listen to your body, because it needs extra care during this time. You might be feeling extra tired and you might have some abdominal, leg and back pain. If you are not up for intense exercise, begin with simple exercise and only make it more intense if you feel like it.
However, more rigorous exercise will release more endorphins to help you feel better. Despite that, only go to the level your body feels okay with each day. You might need to change the intensity during different days of your period, depending on how you feel.
Yoga is a Well-Rounded Exercise
Yoga is a type of exercise that helps cramps in many ways. It combines aerobic exercise and strength-training, plus it incorporates relaxation and stress-relief.
Yoga also has specific poses that can ease period cramps. These include forward bends and light twists. Further, restorative poses and supported poses with blocks, pillows and blankets can help your mind and body relax.
Although it can be difficult to get up and get moving when you have your period, your body will thank you if you do. Try to get a friend to help you exercise if you are not motivated. Also, have fun with your workout by choosing an activity you enjoy.