I was very fortunate to interview Dr Nicky Keay, Sports Endocrinologist. I hope Dr Keay's expertise can be of interest to both female and male athletes. I certainly found talking to her fascinating!
"What makes you run faster? Training hard. We train to gain physiological adaptions. Better VO2 max, shifting the lactate curve to the right. Stronger, more efficient muscles.
But what drives these adaptions? Hormones.
Abuse and manipulation of hormones are a frequent method of doping. Performance is enhanced and dependent on hormone levels"
For anyone wanting to regularly track their hormones, I have used medichecks which provides quick access to numerous amount of blood testing.
Periods are a barometer of hormonal health. This is dependent on the balance of training, nutrition and rest.