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Priority of Needs for Menstruating & Fitness

With the latest obsession of syncing our entire lives to our menstrual cycles comes “cycle coaches” and similar. Here to regurgitate over-generalizations around nutrition + exercise across the month.

But how does this stack up?

While changes in nutritional needs, energy, strength & performance are real— they’re often small effects, non-meaningful effects, or come down so much to individual experience at this time we cannot say there are any absolutes. Or — data just isn’t there yet!

Additionally — every cycle, both month to month AND between individuals, is different.

Stack that on top of women who tend to 1) undereat vs. exercise needs & 2) train inadequately or haphazardly or only for energy expenditure 3) are often underloaded — it turns out, we likely should + need to start here.

While hormonal effects on exercise & nutritional needs are sexy, fun & easy to sell. The majority of women and menstruating individuals need to first likely address stress levels, sleep, adequate food intake & proper exercise training BEFORE taking these into account.

It’s hard to know if it’s the impact of your individual luteal or follicular phase when you’re not controlling for the other variables too.

Women & menstruating individuals need fed. They need adequate training. They don’t need fancy period cycle synced Training before all this … if at all at this time. These approaches may be fitting for more elite athletes but may also be an extra focus/stress for regular trainees & should be used last!

Your own experience is valid. You may experience effects. & these likely aren’t the same as someone else. But you/we need to start at the bottom first to know.

To learn more, checkout out Youtube/podcast episode on cycle syncing myths! The Mess Middle Podcast or Doc Lyss Fitness on YT! 🤍🎧💻

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Hey, I'm Lyss!

I’m Exercise Physiologist, sports nutritionist, weight lifter, and ultra runner. I am here to bring science to your training in a no-nonsense way. I have helped thousands of women crush big lifting goals, cross race finish lines, and even do both. I’m here to help you do the same!

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