If you are following a weight loss plan, or any healthy eating plan for that matter, you probably have noticed abnormal changes in your body around the week of your period. Which can be super frustrating because you are trying your best to stay on plan and you are putting in work at the gym, then your period comes, your cravings get out of control, you are bloated, and cramping, and honestly kind of miserable at times. Maybe I’m talking out of personal experience here, maybe I’m not. 😉
But over time I have been able to find ways to make this time of the month a little easier to deal with, and I want to share those tips with you. Because sharing is caring and no one should have to go through this alone.
1. Managing Water Retention
Most likely you will retain water around this time of the month. The amount will vary from woman to woman and it can be anywhere from 1/2 lb to 10 lbs. Don’t worry! This weight is temporary and will come off once your hormones and body returns to “normal.”
If you are experiencing excess water retention, here are some tips to keep it minimal:
- Keep eating healthy.
- Avoid salty foods.
- Keep working out.
- Increase water intake—I know this may sound counter-intuitive to what you’re trying to prevent, but the increased amount of water will help flush out the toxins in your body and actually help your body hold less water.
- Avoid alcohol during this time as well.
2. Managing Cravings
Brace yourself for the week before your period. Your hormones are fluctuating and your metabolism is speeding up, causing you to have uncontrollable hunger and A LOT of cravings.
A tip I have for this, is to make healthy treat options! Instead of reaching for brownies loaded with sugar, try these 4 ingredient protein brownies instead. They are super simple to make, PLUS they are packed with protein and will satisfy your cravings, WHILE actually keep you on or close to plan.
4 Ingredient Brownies 😍
4 large bananas
1 cup creamy natural peanut butter
2 scoops IdealLean Chocolate Coconut Protein
1/4 cup dark cocoa powder
1. Spray an 8×8 baking dish with nonstick cooking spray.
2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
3. Mash the bananas in a medium bowl. Stir in the peanut butter, protein and cocoa.
4. Bake 12-20 minutes.
If you do eat excess food before or on your period, this will not just be water retention and that kind of weight will be more permanent and you will need to work that off.
A tip I have to help with your bottomless stomach is to have some veggies on hand for when you get really hungry and absolutely have to eat something. They will help keep you full and hold you over until your next snack or meal.
Try baking your veggies in the oven for 10-15 minutes with a little avocado oil or coconut oil, and whatever spices you have on hand. They taste SO good that way.
You can also sign up for a free fitness/nutrition plan which can help you to jumpstart your weight loss and promote a lean and strong bod. Sign up for my free challenge here.
3. staying on plan
A cool thing about the week before your period, is that you’re burning about 10% more calories a day. Meaning, if you stay on top of your plan, you can see a little added weight loss! This isn’t a huge amount, so don’t start eating more than what your plan calls for because you’re burning more calories. Still stick to your plan!
4. Listening to your body
During your period, pain and energy levels are fluctuating. Listen to your body! If you feel like your energy levels are low, try yoga, take a walk, or do just a light workout session. If you feel like you need an extra rest day, take one. On the other hand, if you have a random burst of energy, go get your workout done while your energy levels are up! I also recommend taking Pre-Workout for additional motivation and energy to get you into the gym.
You are also more likely to get hurt during this time. This study shows how during the menstrual cycle women are at a higher risk of injury, as estrogen levels skyrocket.
It is key during this time to have your nutrition and exercise techniques on point to help prevent any injuries from happening! For nutrition, if you’re not on a specific plan, I suggest getting at least 1g of protein per pound of bodyweight each day so your body can heal and repair itself properly. As for exercising techniques, really pay attention to how your body is moving, specifically your joints. And practice good form. Grab a respected gym partner and have them double check your technique as you go!
You Got This
Periods can sometimes get the best of us, but you can stay on track with your goals during this time of the month. Practice healthy habits and remember consistency and balance in all things. You need an occasional treat meal? That’s fine! Take one. Fit it into your week, and don’t feel guilty about it. Enjoy it, then get back on track after.
I also take supplements to make sure that my body gets the vitamins and minerals that it needs to function properly. IdealLean Multivitamin + Beauty Complex promotes eye health, healthy bones, immune support, energy, and more. Plus with our Beauty and Antioxidant Blends you can look and feel your best from the inside out.