I'm a female, 21 years old, height is 5'4 and weight is 120 to 121 lbs. I exercise pretty hard 4 times a week and my sessions are 25 to 30 minutes each. I mostly run, and will do spinning/elliptical sometimes, and also strength train 2 to 3 times a week.
Anyway, I lost weight this past summer, and it may have been from running more often and also having a job where I walk around a bit.
My periods had been normal up until mid to late July/ August, when they became really light, and irregular. And I just sort of had one, but it was literally a day and was barely there, though I had some PMS symptoms.
I'm thinking back and it seems like when I was at 125 lbs, my periods were more regular. So I'm considering gaining back up to that.
My only concern is whether I really NEED to gain weight, because at 120 lbs, I'm classified as being at a "healthy weight." Then again, I'd like to get back on track with having a normal period. Plus, I'm at college now, so I'm walking a lot too, and DO NOT want to lose any more weight.
So would you guys suggest that I gain weight, or maybe just continue with how I'm eating and cut down on the running? Also, do you believe there is a "set point" weight at which your body menstruates normally?
I don't think 5 lbs at your weight would make that much of a difference, but it might. You could try to gain back to 125 lbs and see what happens. if your periods are still irregular, you should see a doctor as something else might be going on.
When I started college I lost a lot of weight because of all the walking, so definitely be sure to eat a bit more.
Thanks, will do!
I am 23, just over 5 ft 6 in, and weigh currently 121. I run a fair amount too --usually 20+ miles a week along with pilates and weights when I feel adventurous.
Starting last winter due to stress and drama involved in getting into grad school I dropped waaay down to 106 by this May and still didn't lose my period. It wasn't an immediate drop. A kind of slow, dwindling, couple pounds a month until I looked in the mirror one day and thought "gee, I look kind of bony and gross now." I was still running, probably much more than I should have been due to stress. My period didn't shorten in duration. I am on the pill, btw. Maybe this helps in comparison.
I know every single person on this planet is different so take what I write with a grain of salt, but... you might want to see if your college health center could steer you in the direction of an endocrinologist to get your hormones checked to rule out polycystic ovary syndrome (or a gynecologist.. or both). It is so much better to know for certain than be in the dark about things like that.
Things to think about:
**did you lose the weight very very fast? Your hormones could have been muddled up from the drop in pounds.
**has your diet significantly changed recently? (have you cut waaaay back on fats or carbs?) This could also be a factor.
**have you been more stressed than usual? Stress can definitely mess up periods. For me, it just messes up my PMSing more :(
Going along with what sara said -- you are at a healthy weight; it may be your diet or your stress causing the amenorhea. A doctor would be the first place to start. But you could also examine your diet -- most athletes lose their periods when their body fat (not their weight) drops below 18-16% -- many runners have low body-fat, partially because of their running and partially because of their (often) ultra-healthy food choices. It's still unusual to lose the period while on the pill, as often anorexics are given the pill to force a period...
You could increase the amount of fat in your diet to the 30-35% range (this is still healthy as long as it's not all saturated or trans fats), and see how it goes, but a rule-out visit to the doc's is still the best idea
Thank you coachk and sara!
sara912- The weight didn't really come off rapidly, I'd say I was down 5 lbs. in a few months. I have been stressed a lot lately and haven't drastically cut back on carbs or fats, but let's say I'm cautious about consuming too much of both. I kind of worry sometimes about consuming too many carbs (grains mainly) and fats. I try to stick to 4 to 6 servings of grains per day, and if I'm over, I get a bit anxious (ED related, but I'm trying to work through it). But yes, I can make an appointment at the health center to check this out. I'm not on birth control.
coachk- I don't know my body fat %, but about a year ago, I got a caliper test and it came out to be 24%. Then again, that was before I ran more.
I can increase my healthy fats more, but would you suggest that I include more grain servings in my diet? And if so, how many? And I'd say I consume around 1700-2000 calories a day. Should I increase my caloric intake?