Are you looking for a break from the “joys” of being a woman? I’m talking about painful periods, mood swings, feeling run down, and just like you must have drawn the short straw to end up with a uterus? Good news! There is a way to bring balance to your hormones and menstrual cycle in a natural, holistic way! The Cycle Syncing Method allows you to become in tune with your menstrual cycle, so you know how to feed and move your body to best support where you are in your cycle at any given time.
It’s time that more women take control over their menstrual cycles instead of letting it dictate their monthly plans. In this article, I’ll share all the information you need to know to get in sync with your body and get back to living a more balanced life.
What is The Cycle Syncing Method?
The Cycle Syncing Method comes from the idea that women need different movement patterns and nutrition throughout their cycles. As long as everything is functioning correctly, women’s bodies cycle through four phases on a “monthly” basis (the average cycle length for women is 23-35 days). Each phase of our cycle, ovulatory, luteal, menstrual, and follicular, are causing increases and decreases in various hormones that are vital for getting an egg ready for fertilization. These hormone fluctuations are what can cause acne, bloating, PMS, fatigue, etc. However, if we can learn how to support our bodies through out each of its cycles, we can experience a better, balanced cycle and therefore decrease the “bad” symptoms we are all trying to avoid.
The Cycle Syncing Method is comprised of two main components: exercise and nutrition.
What to Eat During Cycle Syncing?
An important key of the Cycle Syncing Method is nutrition. What you eat during the Cycle Syncing Method will depend on where you are in your cycle. Why? Because your body has different needs in each phase.
Initially, this can feel daunting. How are you supposed to remember what to eat every week with all of the other responsibilities you have in your life? The most important thing is to not stress yourself out and to remember that there are a lot of foods that overlap and your grocery list won’t have to get completely turned upside down each time you enter a new phase. Also, as long as you’re aiming to eat mostly whole foods, you really can’t go wrong. The goal is to feed your body nourishing, non-inflammatory food that will support it all month long. Here are some examples of foods to incorporate into your diet in each phase.
Broccoli, Grass-Fed Beef, Leafy Greens
Avocados, Sauerkraut, Pumpkin Seeds
Fatty Fish, Spinach, Bell Peppers
Chickpeas, Celery, Apples
A book I would highly recommend to help guide you through cycle syncing nutrition is The Moon Cycle Cookbook.
Cycle Syncing Method Recipes
Cycle Syncing Your Workouts
Another key part of the Cycle Syncing Method is adjusting your workouts depending on where you are in your cycle. Women’s metabolisms and energy levels can fluctuate throughout each phase, so it makes sense that the same workouts would work for your body the entire month. Our bodies need to movement to support a healthy lifestyle but sometimes, the best thing that we can do for ourselves is rest; especially during our period. Sounds pretty nice, huh?
Here are examples of what type of workouts to do in each phase of your cycle.
Rest, Walking, Yoga
HIIT, Jogging, Strength Training
Strength Training, HIIT
Pilates, Strength Training
Will Cycle Syncing Help With Painful Periods?
Yes! By balancing your hormones with the Cycle Syncing Method, it is possible to reduce painful period symptoms. While I can’t promise that your period won’t be uncomfortable ever again, I can say that your symptoms can be decreased and stop severely disrupting your life during “shark week”.
If you do experience chronic painful periods, I would recommend consulting your doctor. Sometimes painful periods are an indication of Endometriosis, PCOS, Pelvic Inflammatory Disease, and more.
How Do I Track My Cycle for Cycle Syncing?
There are a lot of ways to track your cycle. You can observe your cervical mucus, measure basal body temperature, use the calendar method, or just a simple tracking apps to note when your period starts and ends. I like to use the symptothermal method to track my cycle as a form of non-hormonal birth control. If you’re interested in learning more about the symptothermal method, you can see my blog post: Everything You Need to Know About the Symptothermal Method | Natural Birth Control.
Some phases are easier to identify (i.e. your menstrual phase begins when you start your period, you can take an LH test to predict ovulation, etc) and some are a little more loose. Just go with the flow and feel out what works best for your body; a large part of this method is simply learning to become in tune with what your body is trying to communicate to you.
How Long Is Each Phase of Your Cycle?
Cycle phase lengths differ for every woman; like I mentioned before, an average cycle length is from 23-35 days. Within each cycle, you will complete four phases: menstrual, luteal, follicular, and ovulatory. Here are the average phase lengths.
Menstrual: Days 1-5
Follicular: Days 6-14
Ovulatory: Days 15-17
Luteal: Day 18-30
Does Cycle Syncing Work?
I remember the first time I heard of the Cycle Syncing Method. I was scrolling on Tik Tok and saw a girl showing how she was adjusting her workouts to coincide with her cycle. She was approaching her menstrual phase and was planning to take a few days off from the gym. This kind of stumped me because I have always had this false notion that taking time off from workouts would cause a backward slide in my progress.
I was skeptical but I was also quite intrigued. Honestly, I have never felt up for working out during the first few days of my period and would love an “excuse” to not force my body to do that. So, I gave it a try. Instead of working out on my period, I took that time to just lay on the couch and rest. A bonus was if my puppy would let me read a book and not engage in a game of tug of war. 😉
The first day back to my workouts, I was sure I was going to feel like a slug who had been a couch potato for a while. Instead, I was shocked by how GOOD I felt. I went for a run that day and it was exhilarating how much energy I had. After that, I was hooked!
If you think about it, it really makes total sense. Your body is using fatigue during your period as a warning signal to slow down and rest. When we ignore this important sign from our body, we likely won’t be feeling our best.
As someone who deals with pretty intense menstrual cramps, when I learned my nutrition could play into helping reduce those too, I was completely sold on the Cycle Syncing Method.
How to Start Cycle Synching
Are you ready to start balancing your body and getting in sync with your cycle? It can feel like a daunting task, especially if you haven’t given much thought to nutrition or don’t like working out. Just take it one step of time and don’t stress yourself out. Pick one and start working towards that! I started only focusing on cycle syncing my workouts, and once that felt feasible, I slowly started incorporating different foods into my diet. I’m not perfect at it, but I don’t expect myself to be. At the end of the day, my goal is to feel better all month long so I can be my best self. Most of the time, that looks like supporting my body with proper nutrition and movement to meet its needs based on which cycle phase I’m in.
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