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In today’s episode I delve into the intricacies of the menstrual cycle.  It’s something that often gets overlooked in our education, but understanding it can empower us with valuable insights into our bodies.  

We’re all familiar with the basics: a 28-day cycle, ovulation on day 14, followed by menstruation. But there’s so much more to explore beyond these surface-level facts. To truly understand our bodies, we need to dig into what’s happening during each phase of the cycle. It’s about going beyond the calendar dates and getting to know the inner workings of our menstrual cycle.

In this episode, you’ll hear:

-Understanding the four phases of the menstrual cycle: the follicular phase, ovulation, luteal phase, and menstruation; each phase has its own unique characteristics and functions within the cycle.

-How these phases are not isolated events, but rather intricately connected and dependent on each other; the actions and changes in one phase often set the stage for the next, creating a seamless flow throughout the cycle.

-When your body produces key hormones such as estrogen and progesterone during each phase, and understanding these hormone fluctuations can provide insight into physical and emotional changes experienced throughout the cycle.

-What you may feel during each phase of the menstrual cycle, from energy levels and mood swings to physical symptoms, and why recognizing these fluctuations can help you better manage your well-being throughout the month.

-The difference between the fertility awareness method and the rhythm method, and how you can track biological signs like basal body temperature and cervical mucus to determine fertile and infertile days.

This episode is packed full of information that you don’t want to miss! By delving into your menstrual cycle, you’ll gain a deeper understanding of why you experience certain emotions and physical sensations throughout the month. This knowledge will empower you to navigate hormonal shifts with ease and grasp a clearer picture of what’s happening inside your body. 


Taking Charge of Your Fertility by Tony Weschler 

Association of Fertility Awareness Professionals

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Disclaimer: This podcast is for educational purposes only. This may not be the best fit for you and your personal situation. It shall not be construed as medical advice. The information and education provided here is not intended or implied to supplement or replace professional medical treatment, advice, and/or diagnosis. Always check with your own physician or medical professional before trying or implementing any information read here.

Episode info and full transcription here

Understanding Your Menstrual Cycle: A Comprehensive Guide to Embracing Your Body’s Inner Rhythms

Understanding the menstrual cycle is an integral part of embracing and appreciating the ever-changing nature of our bodies as women. It empowers us to establish a deeper connection with our physical and emotional well-being while also recognizing the impact of the menstrual cycle on our overall health. I

n this comprehensive guide, we will delve into the intricacies of the menstrual cycle, covering its four phases, the interdependent hormonal fluctuations, and the signs and symptoms that accompany each stage.

Moreover, we will discuss the importance of being attuned to these changes and how it can aid in recognizing any irregularities. Let’s embark on this journey to unravel the mysteries of our menstrual cycle and gain an insightful perspective on this vital aspect of women’s health.

The Menstrual Cycle: An Overview

The menstrual cycle is a regular, natural process that brings about hormonal fluctuations and physical changes in the female body. Lasting approximately 28 days, the menstrual cycle plays a crucial role in reproductive health, fertility, and overall well-being.

Contrary to common belief, the menstrual cycle isn’t just about having a period; it encompasses distinct phases, each characterized by unique hormonal patterns and bodily adjustments.

Central to this process are the ovaries, uterus, and the complex interplay of hormones such as estrogen, progesterone, follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH), and luteinizing hormone (LH).

Understanding the Phases of the Menstrual Cycle

Follicular Phase

The menstrual cycle commences with the follicular phase, which typically spans the first 14 days. During this phase, follicles within the ovaries begin to develop and nurture the ovum, ultimately leading to the selection of a dominant follicle for ovulation.

As the corpus luteum from the previous cycle breaks down, estrogen and progesterone decline, thereby prompting an increase in FSH, which stimulates the growth of new follicles and sets the stage for the commencement of a new cycle.

Notably, high FSH levels at the onset of the follicular phase gradually decrease as ovulation approaches, while LH increases in preparation for releasing the egg from the dominating follicle.

Ovulatory Phase

The ovulatory phase marks a pivotal stage in the menstrual cycle, lasting for a few days leading up to ovulation. As the dominant follicle assumes its role, estrogen levels rise, inducing the thickening of the uterine lining in anticipation of embryo implantation.

This surge in estrogen serves as an indicator of healthy ovulation, accentuating the pivotal role of estrogen in fertility. The subsequent surge of LH, triggered by estrogen, initiates ovulation, culminating in the release of the mature egg.

These hormonal shifts are significant in understanding the window of fertility and can be utilized for family planning or identifying ovulation during menstrual cycle tracking.

Luteal Phase

Following ovulation, the luteal phase ensues, encompassing the period from post-ovulation to menstruation. An intriguing aspect of this phase is the transformation of the dominant follicle into the corpus luteum, which assumes the role of an estrogen gland, producing progesterone during its ephemeral lifespan.

This progesterone surge prompts the thickening of the uterine lining, in anticipation of a potential pregnancy. Should fertilization occur, the embryo generates human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG) to communicate with the corpus luteum, reinforcing progesterone production.

Conversely, in the absence of fertilization, the corpus luteum deteriorates, causing a cessation of progesterone and estrogen production, subsequently leading to an upsurge in FSH, signaling the onset of menstruation.


The culmination of the menstrual cycle is menstruation, characterized by the shedding of the uterine lining, triggered by the cessation of progesterone and estrogen. While it is normal to experience a decrease in energy and mood during this phase, it should not equate to a debilitating sensation.

Typically, around the third day of menstruation, hormone levels begin to rise, paving the way for the commencement of a new menstrual cycle and a corresponding increase in energy levels.

Signs and Symptoms Throughout the Menstrual Cycle

Follicular Phase

The follicular phase brings about various signs and symptoms, such as heightened energy levels, increased libido, creativity, and sociability.

Additionally, observations of changing cervical mucus consistency, from dry to sticky and eventually wet and slippery, serve as indications of impending ovulation. The qualitative alterations in cervical mucus are insightful signs of approaching ovulation and can be utilized in fertility awareness-based methods for pregnancy planning or avoidance.

Ovulatory Phase

During the ovulatory phase, notable physical and emotional changes can manifest in the form of increased energy, heightened vitality, and a surge in libido.

For some individuals, subtle sensations or twinges around the ovaries might be experienced, signifying the impending release of the egg. Furthermore, the presence of egg white-like cervical mucus is an overt clue signaling the peak of fertility and serves as a prominent marker of ovulation.

Luteal Phase

As the luteal phase progresses, energy levels may gradually decline, accompanied by a heightened sense of introspection and diminished sociability. Observations of drier cervical mucus as the cervix seals off contribute to the holistic perception of the menstrual cycle’s various stages.


Menstruation brings about a natural ebb in energy and mood but should not entail a debilitating state. It is essential to observe the gradual resurgence of energy levels around the third day of menstruation, aligned with the rise in hormone levels, symbolizing the body’s readiness for a new cycle.


The menstrual cycle is a multi-faceted journey that encompasses a series of intricately orchestrated hormonal patterns and physiological transformations. Acquiring an in-depth comprehension of the menstrual cycle’s phases and the associated signs and symptoms serves as a gateway to embracing one’s femininity and fostering a holistic connection with the body’s inner rhythms.

By cultivating awareness of our menstrual cycles and understanding the interdependence of the phases, we can gain profound insights into our reproductive health, fertility, and wellbeing.

Moreover, recognizing the natural variations in our physical and emotional states throughout the menstrual cycle enables us to discern irregularities and seek timely medical intervention when necessary.

As we conclude this comprehensive exploration of the menstrual cycle, it is imperative to acknowledge the intrinsic uniqueness and cyclical dynamism that define the female experience.

Embracing the intricacies of the menstrual cycle offers a pathway to self-awareness, empowerment, and a deeper connection with our bodies. Hence, let us embark on this transformative journey of understanding, acceptance, and celebration of the profound nature of the menstrual cycle.

In essence, the menstrual cycle embodies the essence of femininity, vitality, and the perpetual rhythm of life, reflecting the unyielding strength and beauty within every woman.

Alyssa Chavez endo belly girl




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