In a technology-dominated world, we can sometimes forget that we don’t always need an app for "that." Learning to track your cycle without relying on an app can empower you with useful insights into your health, your fertility and flow, and your emotional well-being. By attending closely to the subtle changes in your body, you gain a deeper connection with yourself and the wisdom of your womb.
How to Ditch the Digital
If you’re seeking a more organic approach to your cycle, here are the steps to get your started:
- Start by recording the first day of your period. This is considered day 1 of your cycle.
- Track the length of your menstrual cycle by counting the number of days from the first day of your period to the day before your next period begins. This gives you an idea of how long your cycle is. Cycle lengths will vary from 21-35 days, depending on the person.
- Take note to the physical changes in your body. Notice any changes in cervical fluid, which can vary in texture and appearance with each phase of your cycle. As you approach ovulation and become more fertile, cervical fluid will become thinner and clearer. You may notice breast tenderness, bloating and mild cramping as your cycle shifts.
- Consider purchasing a basal body temperature (BBT) thermometer so you may observe the fluctuation in your temperature as you shift into different hormonal phases. Take your temperature every morning before getting out of bed and record it on a chart. Right after ovulation, your BBT will rise slightly and remain elevated until your next period. Fertility increases during this time. A drop in your temperature usually indicates the start of your menstrual cycle.
- Notice and record changes in your mood, energy, emotions, motivation and physical sensations. Some will experience noticeable shifts during different phases of the cycle. As you journal these shifts you will start to pick up the patterns of your body. Being in tune with your body’s patterns can help you be cognizant of when you shift into the next hormonal phase.
- Review the patterns you observed throughout a few consecutive cycles. By tracking the changes over time, you can identify the length of your average cycle, as well as predict when you’re most fertile and become aware of any irregularities or possible health issues.
Our hormonal cycles are like fingerprints, all similar in appearance but all so intricately unique. Observing and tracking the patterns of your own body not only empowers your health, but it also helps you understand your emotions and thought processes better. The more we know about ourselves, the better we can take care of ourselves. And remember, manually tracking takes consistency and care. It may not provide the same convenience, but the benefits are worth the attentiveness!
Rebecca Younger is passionate about herbs and women's health. She aspires to plant seeds of inspiration within her community about plant medicine and healthier ways of life. She studied Herbal Medicine at Herbalism Roots in Denver and is a certified Doula through the Matrona Foundation. She is the customer journey lead at WishGarden Herbs.
For educational purposes only. This information has not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This information is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease, or sell any product.