In this series we will spotlight different members of the Scarlet community to learn how they manage their period and whole cycle.
For Brisbane-based dancer and Movement Director Amy Zhang, her life is centred around self care. With her period routine dialled, she’s in tune with the ebbs of flows of her cycle and knows that movement is the key to feeling good.
We caught up to talk about her cycle routine. She told us all about her period hacks, the words she lives by and her advice for taking her partner out of the firing line during PMS rage.
Name: Amy Zhang
Day job: Dancer + Movement Director
😅 I remember seeing blood on my undies and telling my mum, who’s a doctor, so in full doctor-mode she explained that this will now happen every month, took me through the motions of how to put a pad on and that was that.
I am prone to migraines (even more so just before my cycle) that are alleviated by stretching and moving my body so I’m always super vigilant about making sure I take the time to stretch/move everyday.
Growing up with a mum who practises Chinese Medicine, it’s ingrained in me that physical/mental/emotional balance is the key to health and happiness. However 2 weeks before my period, that all goes out the window and my partner could breathe too loud and I’ll snap. It’s taken me 26 years to finally learn that when I feel like this, all I need to do is up my exercise levels.
My partner COPS IT the week before my period. (Bless him!) Thankfully he usually puts two and two together pretty quickly and knows to give me some space. With that being said, if I up my exercise levels, (ie making sure I take that high energy house class) sweating profusely for an hour seems to balance out my mood (and takes my partner out of the firing line).
My entire life is centred around self-care. I always try to get 9hrs of sleep, stretch every morning, stay moisturised, drink heaps of water, eat heaps of colourful foods and dance everyday. So when my period comes around, nothing really changes...But I might watch a bit more trash TV.
ALL OF THEM. I get every symptom under the sun like clockwork. 2 weeks before, my boobs get really sore and I want to eat everything. A week out, I’m moody, irritable and I usually unintentionally pick a fight with my partner. To round it all off, the day before is when my energy levels plummet and my back aches.
I drink a tonne of lemon, honey and ginger teas. My secret recipe is combining fresh grated ginger, manuka honey, a slice of lemon in hot water. But if I’m feeling lazy, there’s an incredible Korean pre-made version that I opt for.
My period described in 3-words… part of life
I know my period is coming when…. My energy levels plummet
On day 1 you can find me... Writing off work to lay in bed with a ginger lemon tea and a heat pack.
Period products of choice... Period cup, reusable undies and the occasional tampon.
When you’re feeling down my advice is to… Figure out what’s getting you down and then give yourself proper time to feel the full wave of emotions. How do you know what high feels like if you’ve never experienced the lows?
My wise-ass advice on dating… They can't read your mind.
Words to live by… There’s a Chinese phrase that roughly translates to “Keep learning until you can’t”.
The Podcast I recommend you save and listen to… Not a podcast but a radio, Blonded Radio
Dealing with your period for the first time… It’s going to take some time for your period to feel ‘normal’ but listen to your body and don’t be afraid to talk to people about it. Chances are, someone else has been through it too.
A guide to working out around your menstrual cycle
Support your hormones throughout each phase of your cycle.
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