PCOS: how much exercise and weight loss help

Hello luvs,

Thanks for all the sweet words and discussion on my last PCOS acne update. You’ve seen me discuss my pcos journey and how I stay positive, you’ve seen the supplements I take and like, and you’ve seen my PCOS superfoods and foods to avoid. If you have not checked those out – go now. Read them first. Then come back here.

How much and what kind of exercise should I do to help lose weight if I have PCOS?

Now for me my PCOS was not a weight loss issue. I had more of the acne and irregular periods from PCOS. But several of you have asked me for help with weight loss when dealing with PCOS. I hope this posts helps you.

Michelle and I have been fortunate that weight-loss has never been a huge issue for us. We’ve been dealt other health issues to deal with like acne, KP, ezcema, constipation, gut and digestion problems, and hormonal imbalances. Even though we still to this day get people thinking our workouts are too intense for our health issues, but promise you they aren’t. We don’t over exercise – anymore. Yes many many years ago during high school and college you can say that we did over exercise (especially college). And a few years after college. But really the past 3 years we’ve stopped over exercising. It may not look like that from our blog, but it’s true.

*Disclaimer:I am not a doctor so please remember to discuss anything new with your doctor before trying anything. I am sharing what I have learned from personal experience and what I have read from my own research. Make sure to do your own research.

PCOS tips for weight loss and exercise

Only we know our bodies and what is too much. We don’t sit around all day exercising. We don’t over-train. We train just enough to maintain our fitness goals (see how we get fit under 30 minutes) and now trying to gain more muscle mass. We learned now that all those years of yo-yo dieting and overdoing our workouts our bodies are now paying the price. Hello messed up hormones.  Sure we regret those years of doing those stressful things to our bodies, but can’t go back to the past. Only move forward.  We’ve been able to maintain our weight (give or take a few pounds here and there) over several years. And this year we’ve been able to really start making small gains! And for whatever reason I have been a little leaner with muscle mass than Michelle. Even as twins we have our individual struggles.

How much exercise is too much?

Great question. I do feel exercising is very important for everyone to do, even those that have PCOS.  I also believe eating well, reducing stress, and moving is key to helping PCOS.

I do feel PCOS can be related to over exercising. I was at fault for that a few years ago.  Luckily, now I have gotten smarter with my workouts and know what to do to get the most out of them. And how to use exercise now to help in my healing process.  In our Purely Fit home workout club our workouts our designed to make you smarter with your workouts. Designed to help you enhance your life on so many different levels.

Michelle and I do those workouts in our program. We don’t do anything extra. Some of you still think that I over exercise and I am here to tell you that I DON’T. I do just enough to keep me active and healthy without over doing it. I don’t workout multiple times a day. I only workout once a day. I go on walks as much as possible. And stretch when I remember. Just remember over exercising can cause issues with your hormones, messes up your estrogen to testosterone, which you don’t want when you have PCOS.

Just be active, but not exhausted. Always listen to your body.

plank exercise

Should you exercise if you have PCOS and what kind of exercise should I do?

Yes. Exercise is great for helping with balancing hormones along with so many other things. Make it a habit to fit it into your everyday life. In our program we share how to make it work no matter what your schedule is or what fitness level you are at. Everyone can workout. Just have to make time for it and do the right kind of workouts.

It’s when you do long chronic cardio that can cause major issues. Again that was Michelle and I a few years ago which we mentioned above. And now we are smarter about everything. We know when we might be over doing it and take a step back.

The types of exercises that we do in our purely fit program are great for anyone, but also great for those with PCOS. We do a lot of body weight and weight based movements which are all great. Body weight movements are classic exercises that have been around forever, even lifting things and doing classic squats are great. If you are in our program you will see how we take a balance approach to fitness with low intensity days and high intensity days, mixed with body weight and weights.

Just remember whatever you decide to do for your fitness when dealing with PCOS is to be active. Walk, lift weights, and keep workouts short.  Do yoga and lots of stretching to balance everything.  That is one thing that I have learned and experienced myself that has helped me on so many different levels.

How much exercise to do:

Depends on your particular body type. If you are truly obese and need to lose weight then your fitness and diet regimen will be different than someone like me that does not need to lose any weight.  Be mindful not to over do it. Just move when you can – nothing too long or intense. Walking is great. I walk everyday. Lifting weights is great. I use weights in my daily workouts. And keeping workouts on the shorter side. Which I do. I do a mix of high intense and low intense workout days, and I feel it has helped with my insulin sensitivity.

Working out is important as it helps to move cortisol through the body. You don’t want cortisol just sitting there in your system because it can build up toxins creating chaos in the body. No good!  Again just find workouts you like and have fun with; workout with me and I promise we will have fun ;)

I feel like my body is in a plateau in my weight loss journey?

Every person probably experiences some form of plateau. We do. The body is smart. It adapts to your changes – good or bad. Your body tries to keep your safe – from losing too much weight. It thinks it is protecting you. You have to change up your exercises and diet some to break that plateau.  What do I mean? Well, easiest ways to trick your body can be through exercise by changing the intensity, how many reps you do, increase your weights, etc. Even changing up your tempo of your walks can help trick the body.

purelytwins

Any supplements that could help with weight loss and PCOS?

I’ve heard great things about Chronmium picolinate. I’ve not personally taken it yet to see how it works, so make sure to ask your doctor about it to see if it would help you. Basically chronmium allows the cells to be more sensitive to insulin. The body starts to utilize insulin. So it helps increase sensitively which is a good thing.  More great supplements to help I’ve mentioned before here. Also CLA could be something to look into and try to see if it helps with weight loss.

How to lose weight and body fat when dealing with PCOS?

Tough question. But focus on fixing insulin resistance. By eating clean real foods.  Avoid sugary foods.  Make sure to get a good amount of protein!  Lower your stress and be patient!! It will take time for your body to adjust and to start seeing the weight come off.  Keep your cortisol levels low. Having high cortisol can cause weight gain among other issues.

Just keep a good plan of attack and know that over time your body will lose that extra weight. Keep up with a good workout routine. And most of all be happy and reduce your stress!

What else about diet and lifestyle that can help?

  • Focusing on eating real whole foods like we mentioned in our purely fit program.
  • Try eating protein at each meal. Whatever you what as your protein source, just make sure to get it at every meal.
  • Limit your processed, packaged foods. Again you don’t have to be perfect, just do your best to limit them.
  • Try to eat a low GI foods.
  • Again play around with your carb intake and what kinds of carbs.
  • Decrease your coritsol levels. High levels of cortisol (our “stress hormone”) is another big reason people tend to gain weight on our abdominal area.
  • Look into if you have a thyroid dysfunction. See about fixing your thyroid to help which I know coconut oil is one thing that can help with.
  • Look more into fixing your leptin, a hormone that regulates hunger and metabolism.

Do you have an insulin problem?

Being insulin resistant and overweight- what to do to help: from my research – make sure to do your own

  • Start to eat 100g of carbs or less. This helps lower insulin levels which can reduce testosterone levels –> I agree with! But also realize those that don’t need to really lose weight with PCOS might need to actually gain weight and might do better with 100g carbs or more. Each person is different!
  • Eat more meals and less snacks –> again I agree, I have done this and it has helped me with balancing my hormones, even if you are not overweight with PCOS eating more 3-4 meals is a good thing to try out.
  • Do high intensity workouts for short time helps with insulin sensitivity  –> for ideas check out our purely fit life home workout club.     No hour long sessions needed.
  • Also do low intensity workouts that you enjoy –> again the idea is to move as much as possible like walking
  • As a last resort - try reduction in calorie intake from time to time. Be careful as you don’t want body to think is starving which causes even more problems, not good! Some articles I’ve read say don’t go too lower than 1,500 calories.
  • And remember it takes time to lose weight —> be patient (something I have to do as well for my acne, it’s hard)

Remember there is no quick fix. You want more slow steady changes because those changes will last!

Just be happy and realize that by making changes to your diet, to your exercise regimen, and having a positive outlook is helping in healing your PCOS. Hang in there. I know the road is long, believe me as I am right there with you in healing my acne. If weight-loss is your main issue with PCOS – just make those few changes and give it TIME!

What to do about PCOS–> you’ve got to figure out these things:

  • Do I need to eat more or less carbs?
  • Do I need to eat more or less calories?
  • Do I need to exercise more or less?
  • Am I making sleep a priority? Am I getting enough sleep?
  • Do I have a stressful life? Am I managing my stress?
  • Do I have a chemical-free environment?
  • Do I need to take some supplements to aid in my healing?

Once you answer those questions you are on your way to healing PCOS. On your way to lose weight and/or get rid of acne; and heal all the other hormonal/health problems that come from PCOS.

Remember I am here for you. You’re not alone. And it’s nice to know that I am not alone either. PCOS is a serious issue and needs to be addressed more often. It is fixable with the right attitude and game plan!

For those that are suffering from PCOS or weight-loss issues do you have anything else to add that might help someone else? Please share below.

Thanks again for reading I appreciate the love and support! xoxo 

#bepurelyyou

be passionate and fit

Lori

Twin sisters. Personal trainers. Creators of Purely Fit Life online workout club. Helping and inspiring others to get strong and fit at home. Cookbook authors of 3 allergy-friendly ebooks. Bakers. Bloggers. Youtubers. Enjoy a balanced lifestyle with a focus on real food. Love inspiring others to become happy and fit in all parts of life.

A trusted source for all things health, fitness, recipes, and happiness. Every article is real, relatable, and with a side of fun :)

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15 Responses to PCOS: how much exercise and weight loss help

  1. Very helpful! I get accused of working out too often as well, but like you said you know your body and what it can handle that’s the key in all of this. Each person is different and you ladies have a great grasp on that.
    Taylor @ Liftingrevolution.com recently posted..7 Tactics To Unleash Your Holiday Fat Melting MissionMy Profile

  2. amanda jewell says:

    Great & very informative article!!

  3. Aubrey says:

    I do not struggle with pcis but am struggling with bloating constipation and gastroparesis so can relate there I get lost wether I should go more paleo or 801010. Ahh this is so hard!!’
    Aubrey recently posted..First Recipe and It’s Wonderful. Bliss Salad.My Profile

    • purelytwins says:

      it is hard, but just listen to your body and experiment try eating more paleo and see how you do, or try eating more plant based and see how you do.

  4. you girls are amazing. my friend just told me last night that she has PCOS so i sent her to your blog and supplied her with links from your blog too girls <3 she was so happy and i was happy to have such great girls to send her to! i know she will read your blog and love it. i have only good things to say about you and i really admire both of you for taking such good care of yourselves. i would love to chat soon! i always love learning from you both xo

    love your triplet ;)
    Meg @ A Dash of Meg recently posted..Tea Tuesday: Choconut OolongMy Profile

  5. lindsay says:

    all good info! I feel like so many women need to read this anyway. A good “check up” and “check in.” ya know?
    lindsay recently posted..Yoga for Running- 3 Poses to Practice Now!My Profile

  6. Sorayya says:

    Great info girls! I just wanted to suggest something to you: I am sure you have already heard of this, but have you tried Neem capsules for your skin? I had some strange small bumps on my forehead that would just not go away and after just a couple of days taking Neem capsules they cleared up and my skin has been glowing since! It purifies your blood which helps the skin radiate. Just a suggestion :)

  7. Miz says:

    SO HELPFUL.
    (((sharing))) with my offline nonbloggy friends, too.
    Miz recently posted..What’s in your bra?My Profile

  8. Mimi says:

    Thanks for the post! I find now, as I am older- in my 40′s- I notice my body looks and feels better the less I exercise. I find the really though constant exercise gives my muscles no time to recover and I shoot out cortisol. Limiting high impact and all out cardio helps too. I have to say, its HARD though! Eating more fat and protein helps me. I am a normal weight PCOS

  9. Have you tried DIM Detox supplement by Pure Encapsulations for cystic acne? If not look into it I posted the link below:

    http://www.epicbeautybar.com/dim-detox/

    ~Chelsea
    Designed For Detox recently posted..Save Money on A Vitamix Blender Now!My Profile

  10. Samantha says:

    Hello!

    So I was researching vegan vs paleo and your site came up. Which I automatically fell in love with. You guys deal with the same troubles as me. The only thing is I’m having a hard time navigating your site, soo much great info. I saw somewhere on your sute( can’t find it now) how you guys cut out sugar and rebalanced your hormones? How did that work for you? My gut also needs help and I’m struggling how to do it. Also do you guys do personalized meal plans? If so I’d def. be interested in some help! Ps I also had pcos in the past. My biggest prob currently is I can’t loose my belly.

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