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PCOS and Exercise: Workouts to Try If You Have PCOS

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PCOS: How Does It Affect Your Body?

Dealing with PCOS can be distressing, in more ways than you can imagine. PCOS is a hormonal condition which leads to an excessive production of the male hormones, androgens.

This hormonal imbalance can cause multiple issues but one of the most prominent ones is weight gain. About 40-80 percent of women suffering from PCOS struggle with being overweight or obese.

Excess of androgens also leads to major changes in your menstrual cycle. You are more likely to face issues while conceiving or are at an increased risk of infertility. Outwardly, your appearance might change too. You are more likely to feel irritated, hopeless, anxious and depressed. In most cases, PCOS also causes insulin resistance.

Why Should You Exercise?

It is important to note that exercise to cure PCOS is not one-size-fits-all. In fact, PCOS can’t be cured at all, it is something that one has to live with all their life. But, doing PCOS exercise at home will certainly help you in managing symptoms better.

Being regular and consistent in your exercising routine can help you in:

  • Lowering your insulin resistance

  • Improving glucose metabolism

  • Controlling blood sugar levels

  • Regularizing menstrual cycles

  • Improving mood

  • Helping with depression and anxiety

PCOS and Exercise

Wondering which exercise is best for PCOS?

Moderate-intensity PCOS exercises have shown to reduce insulin resistance and also help in weight loss. Engage in activities at least three times a week for thirty minutes. Here’s some workouts for PCOS to ensure you are doing things just right:

  • Aerobic Exercise

    You don’t have to go all gung-ho while trying out PCOS treatment exercises. Including moderate exercises like brisk walking, jogging, cycling or swimming in your daily routine can help tackle symptoms of PCOS. Aerobic exercises improve your body’s response to insulin, reduces the risk of cardiovascular diseases and type 2 diabetes. Do at least thirty minutes of cardio every day.

  • Strength Training

    This is a brilliant PCOS weight loss exercise. Strength training reduces insulin resistance. It can help by increasing the size of your skeletal muscle and enhancing the muscles' ability to manage glucose. Not only does it lower androgen levels, but also improves your resting metabolic rate and fights belly fat.

  • High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT)

    There is a common myth doing the rounds on the internet today: HIIT should be avoided by those with PCOS. HIIT is an intense workout that only lasts about 20 minutes. In just this short span of time it can improve your insulin sensitivity. It also increases the production of Human Growth Hormone or HGH which improves your metabolic rate.

  • Mind-Body Workout

    Mind- body workouts such as walking, swimming, yoga and pilates may be the best exercise for PCOS problem. They keep your body active and reduce cortisol levels. Stress is a major symptom for those suffering with PCOS. These restorative exercises align the body and the mind, and also lower internal inflammation caused by PCOS.

  • Playing a Sport

    Playing a sport may prove to be the best exercise for PCOS. Playing a sport can help in burning extra fat stores which helps in weight loss, regulating hormones and insulin levels. When you’re exhausted at the end of the day, you are more likely to fall asleep as soon as your head hits the pillow. Playing a sport can also help your mental health by releasing endorphins or the ‘feel- good-hormones’.

You should remember that exercise itself is a form of stress, called eustress which is the beneficial kind. Too much of eustress and too fast can delay your recovering process.

You can try out different workouts till you find what works best for you. You can go to a professional if you need an exercise plan for PCOS. They can guide you on the foods that you should consume as well, but trying out these workouts should be a good start for any beginner.

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