People love bashing high intensity workout, high volumes of cardio AND obsessing over the small ways we can do program around the menstrual cycle — majoring in the minors — and forgetting the biggest threat to active female health + performance.
Data has fairly consistently shown it’s not the stress of training per say but the intentional or unintentional lack of energy to support it. Leading to a down regulation of hormones across the body including sex hormones (in both sexes).
In menstruating trainees this is a massive threat to reproductive health, performance & general health due to a Down-regulation of other basic physiology processes to conserve energy.
Ideally active women should be consuming 40-45 Kcal/kg FFM/ day to meet these minimums. Below 30 is where things get wonky.
I know this math is confusing for many so for example I am ~145lbs & ~113lbs Fat free mass (FFM). This is ~51kg FFM, so I want to be eating at the least 2,040-2,285 Kcal/day, if not more (for reference, I eat more).
Knowing your FFM can be tricky without access to body composition scans like DEXA or a well controlled inbody. @mymadeapp (code LITTLELYSS) is a great alternative from home! (Please contact them if you have issues with the app or scan results not me).
All this to say — you can love HIIT, crossfit, your high intensity classes, running, high volume of lifting — assuming it’s well programmed of course 🤪— and stay healthy. You just have to eat ENOUGH.
💋 DOC LYSS