The Four Phases are like the Four Seasons

Just like the four seasons experienced each year, your body goes through four phases.  Every phase has a unique purpose and is designed to support you. In this blog, I will discuss what they are and what happens in each phase.  

Keep tuned because in the next blog I will discuss what you can do to support each phase.

Menses phase:

This phase tends to last 3-7 days. When your progesterone levels drop, the lining of your womb (known as your “endometrium”), begins to shed. This is when your period starts. 

Some women may experience cramping, which is due to Oestrogen dominance causing the uterus to contract. Some women experience cravings and PMS, which is also due to excess Oestrogen dominance.

Mostly, women will feel tired, which is caused by a drop in progesterone levels.  In this phase, you are able to analyse how you feel about things that may be happening around you and you’re able to address the best course of action. This is a great time to think and work on them.

It’s okay to rest in this phase and avoid high impact exercise.

Follicular Phase:

This phase tends to last 1-13 days, including the first day of your period.

Your pituitary gland releases a hormone called a “follicle stimulating hormone,” it causes the follicles to mature and these follicles are sacs which contain your eggs.

The follicle stimulating hormone sends signals to your ovaries, in this phase your eggs are maturing before they are released (typically on day 5 of your cycle). Your endometrium (the lining of your womb) begins to build back up again, your Oestrogen levels begin to increase; you may feel more energetic, so this is a great time to exercise.

You may also begin to feel optimistic and take risks, this is because your Testosterone levels are also rising, thus increasing your libido and the Oestrogen allows you to begin to feel more confident and open. Furthermore, your vaginal discharge will begin to build up, this is also because your Oestrogen levels are beginning to rise.  

The vaginal discharge tends to be white and creamy, it may feel or look sticky and tacky and you if you have the average cycle which is 28 days, you may notice this discharge between days 7-11 of your cycle.

Ovulation Phase:

This phase tends to last for 3-5 days, the hormone called “luteinizing” becomes active. Luteinizing triggers the egg to be released from your fallopian tubes, and the egg will survive for 12-24 hours.

Oestrogen levels increase; this means you have even more energy.  Your vaginal discharge will become more stretchy and slippery (egg white-like mucus) and is a clear indication of ovulation.  If you observe this, then you are probably ovulating.

Ovulation days are normally 12-16 days before your next period and if you have the average 28 day cycle, the egg may be released on day 14.

The ‘egg white mucus/discharge’ is needed to support the sperm, so if you are planning for a baby, know when your body is on this phase and become more proactive with your partner. 

You also feel a lot more confident and optimistic, which means that your communication levels will be stronger. This is often the best time to verbalise your thoughts, feelings, ask for a pay rise, go for a job interview and do things that tend to be out of your comfort zone.

Luteal phase:

This phase typically lasts for 12-16 days; oestrogen, testosterone, and progesterone reach their optimum levels before potentially falling.  

Progesterone levels are needed because it maintains the lining of your uterus and oestrogen thickens the lining of your uterus.  If the egg is fertilised, it will implant into the lining of the uterus and grow into a fetus. If the egg is not fertilised, the egg dies, progesterone levels will stop and the endometrium will begin to shed (causing your period to start).

In the average 28 day cycle, this phase begins on day 15.  The first half of this phase you may feel like you have energy while the second half you may begin to feel tired and possibly nostalgic. This why it is essential to implement a lot more self-care.

All phases of your cycle are vital, however, the luteal phase can tell you a lot about your fertility, for example, if your luteal phase is less than 10 days, you may be at risk of regular miscarriages.  This is because progesterone may begin to fall, this hormone is essential to maintaining pregnancy.

If you are trying to conceive, low progesterone levels will inhibit the lining of the wall from being maintained, this in itself does not allow the egg to have enough time to implant into the endometrium (the lining of your uterus).  

Even if your egg is fertilised, you will never know you were pregnant as the egg did not implant into the lining of the womb.  Implantation is what allows us to find out we are pregnant! 

In my next blog I will list a few things you can do to support each phase.

If you would like to know more or learn how to support your whole cycle, you can subscribe to our newsletter, we also have online video courses that are simple and comprehensive. If you would like a consultation you can do that here and we will be happy to assist you.

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