Is it really true that too much exercise can lower the chances that you'll get pregnant? Read on to find out more.
While it's true that a healthy body is important to have if you're trying to conceive, is it possible to be 'too healthy' and actually lower your chances of conception?
Pushing your body too much can have a negative effect on your fertility
For the most part, regular physical exercise won't necessarily affect your chances of conception. However, if you regularly engage in intense physical exercise, such as if you're an athlete o
However, if you regularly engage in intense physical exercise that pushes your body to its limits, then it can have a negative effect on your fertility.
Gynecologist Dr. Gordon Lim shares that 'higher-level' exercises, such as exercises done to prepare for a marathon or a triathlon, can "cause the ovaries to shutdown temporarily."
He adds, "In other words, there is no ovulation, so her period will be delayed."
A low weight or low body mass index or BMI, which most athletes have, can also affect a woman's fertility.
It also depends on the individual
Gigi Fernandez, a professional tennis player, retired at the young age of 33. She underwent seven rounds of fertility treatments before finally being able to have twins at age 44. In an interview with the New York Times she shares, "I felt almost like I wished I would have never played tennis."
On the other hand, Serena Williams, a decorated tennis player, won the 2017 Australian Open while she was in the early stages of her pregnancy. Gal Gadot was 5 months pregnant when she shot the film Wonder Woman, which had her go through rigorous physical training.
So there are cases wherein super fit women can conceive without any problems. The chances of conception also depends on the individual, so just because you're super fit doesn't necessarily mean that you'll have problems conceiving a child.
Things to keep in mind
- If you're trying to conceive, it's important to not overstress your body. Not only can it affect your chances of conception, but too much strenuous exercise can cause you injury and can actually harm your body instead of strengthening it.
- Your diet is important. Having too low of a body weight can negatively affect your chances of conception while being too overweight can also have the same effect. Aim for a weight that suits your body so that you won't have any problems.
- Keep track of your periods. If you see that you suddenly have an irregular period, then it would be best to change your exercise habits as it might be affecting your fertility and ovulation.