This Is How Your Workout Routine Might Be Affecting Your Period

by Imani Brammer

This may surprise you, but when you have killer cramps during that time of the month, exercise can actually help ease the pain of those menstrual symptoms.

I know what you're probably thinking, but please, just hear me out.

The cramping you feel during your period happens as a result of the uterine lining releasing prostaglandins.

According to, prostaglandins are hormones that limit blood blow to the uterus, which is what causes those painful contractions you feel.

But exercise and all its lovely endorphins can counteract that increased blood flow and actually make your body feel, well, not as terrible as usual when you're on your period.

Plus, according to PopSugar, endorphins can help with menstrual headaches, those I-feel-like-I'm-giving-birth cramps, and of course, the fatigue.

While exercise can be a great way to relieve different period symptoms, it's important to know how your workout routine can affect your cycle.

Elite Daily spoke with celebrity fitness trainer Barrington Bennett to learn more about what can happen to a woman's body when she begins challenging herself with a rigorous exercise routine.

He explains,

Some clients have actually missed their period when they started training. Certain things like higher body fat will actually make the flow heavier or lighter. Working out and decreasing body fat would make that better.

The reason why exercise may cause some people to miss a period is because, to put it simply, working out puts a strain on the body -- a good strain, but still a strain.

If your body feels like it's being overworked, it may shut down one process in order to do another properly -- not unlike how you might "force quit" on your laptop when a program doesn't run smoothly.

However, for most of Bennett's clients, despite occasional headaches or cramps, he says being on their period really doesn't stop them at all from performing to the best of their ability.

But when it comes to more intense training regimens, that's when the danger becomes a little more real.

If you continue to amp up the intensity of your exercises without maintaining your nutritional values and calorie counts accordingly, you may see your period stop altogether -- aka amenorrhea.

Amennorhea mostly occurs in athletes training in ultra-competitive sports, such as distance runners, figure skaters, ballerinas, and gymnasts.

All in all, the best thing you can do is listen to, and be in tune with your body's natural processes.

Losing yourself in a challenging, yet inspirational workout grind is, no doubt, extremely good for you, but taking care of yourself is a number one priority -- always.