Over the last year, I’ve noticed more women finding a comfort level in talking about their menstrual cycle. And I think that’s HUGE!!! We need to understand how it effects our running, our mood, our stress and is this new trend of CBD oil for heavy periods and cramps legit?
Honestly, this is a subject that I always veered away from in the past because it felt like we were supposed to keep it quiet. Hush. Hush. Pretend it doesn’t happen.
But it does…almost like clockwork…with some wide variations depending on the month, the woman, our running and LIFE.
In my Virtual Run Club we’ve been diving so much in to female hormones for performance and weight loss that I wanted to shed some light on this topic as well because period cramps have been my downfall more than once.
A few good reads if you haven’t already:
- How your cycle effects your workout – when are you primed for your speed sessions
- Cortisol and Exercise – how this hormone could be causing your weight gain
- What is CBD Oil – it’s not marijuana and it’s not the same as hemp! KNOW BEFORE YOU BUY anything.
CBD Oil for Cramps
Can CBD help with periods? In my experience the answer is yes.
But let’s be clear, I’m not saying it’s the only thing I’m using. I’m saying it helps.
One of the reasons, many female runners have been looking to try it out is because when we take Aleeve or another pain reliever, there’s potential issues with taxing our liver (seriously it’s a don’t do), but also because it can make us tired.
Since I only need Aleeve once a month, it almost knocks me out! I’m game to try and find other tools to help my body.
Why CBD oil can help with period pain?
- CBD oil helps to promote relaxation for better sleep and since sleep is often disrupted during PMS that’s win number one
- CBD cream is often used on muscle aches and I’ve found it to be sooooo great on my lower abdomen when cramps start to help ease them
- CBD works with our internal endocannabinoid system which is part of why we think it can help with pain
- That same system is what’s responsible for achieving the runner’s high
A few things that can help to ensure CBD oil works for period cramps:
- Start increasing your CBD dosage some prior to starting your period. There is a cumulative effect.
- Take a full spectrum CBD from a HIGH QUALITY source (stop with the hemp oil, it’s not the same and stop buying one’s with a ton of filler. Might be cheaper, but if it doesn’t work who cares.)
- Take a high enough dosage and possibly a little more when feeling your worst. 20mg dropper at night and then CBD gummies during the day is a great option.
I shared my skepticism about CBD in that original article with all the research. And while it’s still not a cure all by any means….
I was happy to be proven wrong as it was such a game changer in my return post knee surgery and now I’ve seen how it’s continued to help me improve my running through higher quality sleep and recovery.
It was a pleasant bonus to realize it could help when that pain started and I wanted to crawl in to a hole. Plus, the CBD gummies were a nice mood boost on those days when I felt like I couldn’t handle any additional stress.
Why runners need their periods?
Yes ladies they are important. As someone who has super low hormones, I can tell you there’s a lot happening with those puppies and you need them.
Inconvenient because we can’t schedule them around races, sure.
Necessary none the less for optimal health.
- We’re learning more about how birth control forcing a period isn’t really the same and isn’t truly giving you the necessary hormonal benefits
- Not having it is often a sign of the Female Athlete Triad – which is a major issue for health.
- Low estrogen leads to bone density issues – more stress fractures
It’s not impossible to be a distance runner and have a consistent cycle. But you do need to pay attention to your body and your fueling.
Picture from thehealthleap.
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