Okay. Okay. Don’t let this title alarm you. BY NO MEANS do we want to STOP you from exercising (or rather scare you from exercising). Absolutely not. After all, exercise is IMPERATIVE to successful weight loss, muscle growth and strength as well as mental clarity and overall general wellbeing.
HOWEVER – what we DID want to address in this short article are 4 things that can HAPPEN during exercise that can irritate, bother or make your va-jay-jay a little uncomfortable.
This article is to reassure you. IF YOU HAVE EVER FELT THE BELOW you are NOT ALONE…. and there ARE THINGS you can do about it to make exercise more pleasant…and hit your health and fitness goals faster.
4 things that can happen to your vagina during exercise
Exercise can actually cause yeast infections.
While yeast infections are not dangerous – they are super duper uncomfortable. Anyone who has had ever had one can tell you that.
For the most part yeast infections cause your vagina to become itchy. It can also be accompanied by burning sensations, painful urination and pain during sex. Not fun.
So, here’s how exercise can cause yeast infections…
When you sweat (during exercise), moisture is trapped down there. If you work out for a long time, sit in your gym clothes for too long and don’t shower after a session – this trapped moisture can cause an imbalance in the bacteria down there… and the thing you know… you have a yeast infection.
It is recommended to wear loose clothing when working out, wearing cotton undies, showering right after exercise and changing clothes afterwards. This is your best bet for letting your vagina have room to sweat and air out.
On a similar note – here are 8 symptoms of thrush all breastfeeding mums need to know about.
Did you know every vagina has it’s own unique smell? That’s right! Everyone has a unique smelling va-jay-jay.
However, medications, fabrics, diet, hygiene, periods, sex and, yes, exercise can affect your vagina’s odour.
Once again, if you don’t change after working out OR wear undies/clothes that allow your vagina to breathe during fitness – you may notice your vagina begin to smell differently.
Once again, this ‘smell’ could be a warning – that if you don’t let that vagina breathe soon – a yeast infection may be headed your way.
HOWEVER when you notice a smell down there… ask yourself… have you noticed this before??? And just how ‘smelley’ is it? You may way to see your G.P if it’s smellier than usual.
A desensitised vagina doesn’t sound like a good thing for anyone!
A study in the Journal of Sexual Medicine found that cycling can desensitise your vagina leading to less satisfaction in the bedroom. Uh-Oh!
The researchers compared avid female runners to avid female cyclists. It was then discovered that particular bikes had an impact in ‘vaginal and labial genital sensation’.
Changing your bike set up when you go to hop on can change the sensitivity of your vagina. Ensure your handlebars are at the same height or higher than your seat. This means less pressure on your vagina (particularly on the delicate labia majora and minora) and less desensitisation!
Bacterial vaginosis, a bacterial infection caused by the imbalance of good and bad bacteria in the vagina that causes the pH level of the vagina to rise to alkaline levels
*A healthy vagina has an acidic pH level of around 4.0.
BV can cause your vagina to produce a fishy smelling odour and this is when you should consult your doctor.
How can you contract this? Tight fitting clothes down there can increase your chance of developing BV. Think re-wearing workout clothes or not showering after sweating!
PLEASE NOTE: A common difference between bacterial vaginosis and a yeast infection is the colour of discharge which may be accompanied. Thick and white discharge usually indicates yeast and grey and yellow discharge usually indicates BV.
For more ways on how to keep your body (and vagina) healthy visit our health section.