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What Are Cycle-Synching Workouts & How Do I Do Them?

While a period can be a total damper on your month, understanding the actual inner workings of your menstrual cycle can significantly improve how you navigate your body’s natural rhythms. I often joke about my ovulating days or how the struggle is real through other phases, especially cramping during workouts. But what if we could harness these changes to feel more empowered during that time of the month? From appetite to sleep and mood, each phase of your cycle brings unique changes. So, cycle-syncing workouts just might be the concept that helps you adapt your exercise habits to match the phases of your menstrual cycle.

Cycle tracking is a useful tool for exploring how your mind and body feel throughout your cycle. After a few cycles, you’ll likely notice some common trends that can help you develop habits supporting your unique needs in different menstrual stages. Whether it’s “crunch time” during your follicular phase or finding your “flow” in the luteal phase, these workouts are designed to sync seamlessly with your body’s rhythm. 

What is a cycle-synching workout?

Let’s break it down for a second. Adjusted to align with your personal preferences and energy levels, cycle-synched workouts focus on the most effective training sessions that best correspond to your hormonal changes throughout the month. Tailored to the four different phases of the menstrual cycle — menstruation, follicular, ovulatory, and luteal — these exercises are designed to support you in your element and adjust based on how you feel day to day.

Don’t let your period stop you — use cycle-syncing workouts to flow into a better and more balanced version of yourself. Inspired by each of the four phases of your menstrual cycle, here are four cycle-syncing workouts to try during your next cycle.

Menstruation

During days one through five of menstruation, AKA your period, your body seriously goes through so many hormonal shifts. With estrogen and progesterone levels at their lowest and your body shedding the uterine lining, it’s normal to feel a little more tired than usual. Because this phase is a time to be kind to yourself, focus on being gentle, and embrace low-impact activities like stretching or some easy walks. If you experience pain or fatigue, there’s absolutely no need to push yourself. Instead, prioritize comfort and choose exercises that feel right for you during this time.

@rael

#stitch with @laurinehy Did you know these 3 workouts can help with period cramps during your menstrual phase? 💪🩸#workouts #workingout #period #periods #menstrualphase #workoutonperiod #periodcramps #periodcramprelief

♬ original sound – Rael
Follicular

From days six to 14 of your menstrual cycle, your body is gearing up for ovulation, and this is when your estrogen levels start to climb. With this rise in estrogen, you’ll likely notice a spike in your energy levels, making it the perfect time to amp up your fitness routine. Whether you’re hitting the gym for some weight training, going on a hike, or taking a brisk walk around campus, you’ll find these activities extra satisfying and invigorating right now. Take advantage of this high-energy phase to seriously crush your workouts and enjoy the added boost.

@zoeantonia_

The excessive amount of deodrant is needed for the sweaty workouts I’m about to face 😂 syncing my workouts to my hormone changes during my menstrual cycle has been the best tool for me to reach my fitness goals whilst simultaneously balancing my hormones! Does anyone else look forward to their follicular phase? ⚡️🤭 #hormonehealth #hormonebalancing #fyp #cyclesyncing #menstrualcycle #hormonesupport #pcos #adrenalsupport

♬ Baby Girl – Disco Lines
Ovulatory

Between days 15 to 17 of your cycle, your body releases an egg, thanks to peak levels of luteinizing hormone (LH) and follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH). This phase, called the LH Surge, can make you feel super alert and energetic. It’s a perfect time to push yourself with intense workouts like high-intensity interval training (HIIT) or spin classes. However, always listen to your body — some experience abdominal discomfort, AKA cramps, during ovulation. If that’s you, don’t hesitate to take it easy and give yourself the rest you need.

Luteal

Lastly, in the final stretch of your cycle, from days 18-28, your progesterone levels peak and estrogen rises slightly, but not as much as earlier on. This hormonal shift might make you feel less motivated, so this phase can seriously impact mental health. But that only means setting aside time for longer recovery after intense workouts. If you start feeling a bit low, focus on doing activities you love to help manage emotional stress. Whether it’s a calming run with a friend or some soothing yoga, pick what feels best for you and take care of yourself.

@mayaganfit

Luteal phase calls for a lighter, low impact workout💓 SAVE & add to your routine! #cyclesyncing #lutealphase #dumbbellworkouts #lowimpactworkout

♬ original sound – DJ Discretion

Unlocking your peak potential starts with tuning into your body and understanding its signals. By aligning your workouts with your menstrual cycle, you can supercharge your energy, boost your mood, and enhance your overall wellness. So, take charge and elevate your fitness journey with cycle-synching workouts because your body really does know best.

Lily Brown

Emerson '25

Lily Brown is the Wellness Intern for Her Campus Media. She writes for the Culture, Style, and Wellness verticals on the site, including Beauty, Decor, Digital, Entertainment, Experiences, Fashion, Mental Health, and Sex + Relationships coverage. Beyond Her Campus, Lily is a rising senior at Emerson College in Boston, MA, majoring in Journalism with a Publishing minor. She works as the Creative Director for the on-campus lifestyle publication, Your Magazine, where she establishes and curates the conceptual design and content for the entire publication ranging from style, romance, music, pop culture, personal identity, and college experiences. She has written and photographed for Your Mag along with several other on-campus magazines. Lily was recently recognized for her work on YM and awarded two EVVYs for Outstanding Print Publication. In her free time, Lily maybe spends a little too much time keeping a close eye on captivating red carpet and runway fashion, and binge-watching her favorite shows. She also enjoys expressing her thoughts through creative writing, exploring new destinations, and blasting ABBA, Dua Lipa, Harry Styles, and Lady Gaga on Spotify. Additionally, she actively contributes to fostering a sense of community among college residents as a dedicated Residential Assistant.