Welcome back Dr Tracey Teasdale ND
Lise and Dr Tracey talk about the role of hormones play in athletes, in particular the distance athlete. You can work your way through a short workout anytime of the month. Tracking your cycle will help you get in tune with your body and how your body responds.
Garmin has a great tracking app. Fitbit and Apple watches also have them. There are other apps that you can purchase of find for free. P Tracker is the one that Dr Tracey uses. You can also track the severity of your symptoms as well.
A calendar and day planner will work as well if you are not into tech.
Lise's goal race is IM Muskoka 70.3. What are things that we can look at to optimize performance on race day.
Your cycle is broken up in two phases. The first half and the second half.
The first seven days we are lower in estrogen and progesterone. Some say we are more like men because we don't have as much of these hormones that affect how we cool ourselves, how our fuel utilization is and how we recover. That is usually when we feel the worst. We have fewer hormones floating around, but it's usually the time when we are feeling crams, lethargic or nauseous. Just knowing where you are in your cycle is important.
There are things a naturopath can help with, from a hormone perspective.
In training you can flip things around, but you can't do that on race day.
Having an idea of where you are in your cycle and how your body will respond to the conditions is really beneficial to your performance on race day.
The second half you get a peak in estrogen, then you drop off, you ovulate. Then you another peak of estrogen progesterone that s the area when ere progesterone is a biggie. That its when we get all of the PMS symptoms. Not enough estrogen will do the same. A naturopath can help balance those.
In terms of endurance, Progesterone is important for distance athletes. It delays the sweat response. If you are working out in the heat. IM Muskoka 70.3, mid July in Muskoka Ontario, it will certainly be hot. You don't sweat as much and the sweat response is delayed which makes it harder to cool so it means your hydration practices have to be spot on.
Your plasma volume also drops so you don't have as much blood pumping around. It also changes the electrolyte balance. That information impacts the fueling and hydration status in plan for a race.
Lise could have used that information at the Barrelman 70.3. Dr Tracey also ran a half marathon on Toronto Island on that unseasonably hot day.
If women are on birth control or have an IUD, it's still beneficial to track, but the shifts won't be the same as someone naturally having their period.
Women are more sensitive to daily changes in nutrition, fasting and not eating regularly.
We are also more sensitive to nutrient timing window after a workout. Getting the fuel in right away helps setting you up for the next workout.
Most female athletes that Dr Tracey has met are looking at weight loss. While some caloric restriction is ok, but in the long run there can lead to the female triad. We need to fuel for performance.
Should Lise start trying with a base cycle. This is the off season for most triathletes. Weight loss is best done at this time.
Lise attended "The Art of Optimal Sports Performance" workshop hosted by Dr Tracey Teasdale, ND. and realized that while she eats healthy and over the course of the week, gets all of her nutrients in, that day, she did not get enough protein.
Generally, endurance athletes don't get enough protein or water. Those are usually the first things to address to start performing better and weight loss.
We can also track your nutrition as well to get a snap shot to see if your fueling needs are met.
Getting enough sleep is also important. Routine is important. Going to bed and waking up at the same time is always important. There are also sleep trackers as well.
The hours before midnight are critical. The recovery hormones that float around are at their peak before midnight, so if we don't get enough sleep, then we are not recovering as well.
Shift workers can benefit from doing the heaviest training when they are off or when they are on days. There are also tricks that Dr Tracey can provide in office.
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Till next time, have a great active week.