Periods aren't the best time of the month, but don't let it get in the way of doing whatever you want to do. Exercise is proven to help ease some of the discomfort caused from them, but female bodies go through a lot, even without the added pressures of cycling.
But if like us, the idea of not cycling for five whole days is met with a feeling of dread, use these simple tips which should make cycling on your period more comfortable:
- Use tampons. This doesn't apply to everyone as some women prefer not to, but in the world of cycling, this is definitely a good route to go down. Why? It won't move position whilst riding and will reduce chafing as unlike sanitary towels there is no extra material to rub against your skin.
- If not, try a menstrual cup.
- Take ibuprofen to ease pain and discomfort caused from riding on your period.
- Drinking caffeine, in small doses can also help to kick start the pain relief from the ibuprofen.
- Make sure to eat more. Our body's need more from us when it's that time of the month, especially when we're burning so much off in the saddle.
- Listen to your body. While exercise does help to alleviate the discomfort, a lot of women will often feel a lot more lethargic than usual. If you are struggling to keep your legs going to do push yourself further.
- Remember you are not crazy, it is the hormones! Most women suffer a rush of emotion leading up to or during their period. It's likely that small things will set you off. Whether it's not winning that race or simply logging a poorer than usual performance on Strava it might just be the straw that breaks the camel's back. Take a deep breath and remind yourself you are only human, you are not crazy and the feeling of anxiety will pass.
We used Saddle, Sore, a book written by Molly Hurford as a reference for this article. You can find out more about her brilliant book here.
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