Poor training, tracking progress, weight fluctuating, feeling down, not as strong as last week, hungrier some weeks?.
All these occur during your 28 day, 4 week cycle (might be more or less – irregular due to PCOS or other under lying issues).
Below i have listed the 3 phases of your cycle with some info on what happens to your body internally and externally during these weeks, one big point to take is don’t track your progress on different weeks of your cycle. Don’t compare week 2 of one cycle to week 3 of the next, your body is not the same (physiology) so when looking to get the most accurate readings of progress be it; scales weight, measurements, calipers, pictures always compare the same weeks each month, if you feel your best during week 1 of your cycle then compare week 1 next month too, if you feel best during week 2 of your cycle then compare week 2 next month etc… and don’t beat yourself up each month just because you don’t know why things are so different in only 1 or 2 weeks of your cycle.
Start Of Cycle – Day 1 to 10. (Menstruation, Follicular Phase )
Good week of your cycle to track progress (scales, measurements, calipers).
Most accurate weight/composition.
Estrogen levels are high.
2 weeks of a deficit is good here.
Middle Of Cycle – Day 11 to 18. (Ovulation, Most Fertile)
Weight can fluctuate a lot in this week (sodium handling i.e. water retention).
Not great for tracking progress/weight.
End Of Cycle, Day 19 – 28.
PMS (Luteal Phase)
Most injury prone (dislocations).
Estrogen is low, progesterone is high.
Hungry, due to increase in serotonin & dopamine being lowered.
Cravings very high.
Poor gym performance, don’t expect any big PR lifts.
2 weeks at maintenance calories to avoid binging.
Increase calories from protein (hunger) & fats (insulin resistance).