When you’re trying to diet, your period can be a bitch. Am I right?
You start the diet, you do really well for a couple of weeks and lose a pound or two, then that time of the month comes… and, all of a sudden, you find yourself half-way through your cookie jar in ten minutes.
Maybe you’ve even read my tips on how to control your food cravings, but the allure of that chocolate box is simply irresistible during your period.
Are you doomed to never get into shape?
In fact, you can literally have your cake and eat it: By understanding more about your menstrual cycle, you can lose fat and have chocolate, too.
Want to learn how? Keep reading.
Let your body take care of you.
When we think “menstrual cycle,” we think PMS, cramps, chocolate cravings, and mood swings.
However, the menstrual cycle affects you all the time, not only during PMS week and when you’re bleeding. These hormonal changes can alter the way your body responds to training and nutrition, too.
For example, a study from 2018 showed that a resistance training programme and a high-protein weight loss diet, tailored to the different phases of the cycle, may result in higher weight loss than a protocol that doesn’t take the cycle into account.
With a deeper understanding of each phase, you can optimise your training and nutrition, learning to predict when you might need more recovery and when you are more likely to smash training and/or dieting.
One important key to success is self-confidence. An important key to self-confidence is preparation.
In the UK, research shows that 75% of females are keen on a more active lifestyle, but feel intimidated by the gym environment and limited by work and family commitments. For that reason, in 2015 Sport England launched a campaign called This Girl Can to empower females to exercise.
In 2017, a similar survey on 1,000 people in America suggested that almost 65% of females, compared to 36% of males, are too anxious or self-conscious to go to the gym.
Most of the studies done on the transgender population in relation to fitness have focused on sport. Nevertheless, there is evidence that recreational exercisers experience discrimination and other negative experiences, too.
That, along with the amount of articles on how to overcome dysphoria at the gym, proves how hard it can be for female-bodied individuals of any gender to engage in a more active lifestyle.
So it’s important to find ways to increase our self-esteem and motivation. And what better way than knowledge?
With resistance training, in particular, we have the potential to accomplish great things. Unfortunately, we often underestimate that potential. When confronted with some buff gym bro, we think, “Why should I bother?”
For cis girls, the question stops there. For trans guys, it could become, “Why should I bother until I’m on testosterone?”
This lack of belief in ourselves can be a hard or impossible obstacle to overcome.
But what can this body do for us? What can we do for ourselves?
A lot, it turns out.
In this article, I’m going to give you three reasons why you should feel more confident in the gym.
A personal trainer who likes bodybuilding, superheroes, and bread.
Want to work with me? Check out my services!