Oh, girl, it’s that pesky time of the month again. It feels taboo but it is something beyond our control. So, yes! We have to talk about it because it happens.
You’re excited about an outdoor adventure next week only to realize you are also expecting your period on the same dates. Should you cancel or push it through? If you’re having this perplexity then read on.
When I was just starting to love outdoor activities like trekking and climbing, I used to make sure my “red days” don’t meet my trek dates. I thought it was impossible and uncomfortable to climb mountains while you have ‘something’ going on inside you. But there came a time when my thirst for adventure was stronger than my doubts. That’s when I learned to figure out how not to let my red days impede my plans.
Here are important DON’Ts to remember:
- DON’T compromise your hygiene.
Hygiene is very important. Girls are very prone to urinary tract infections, especially on our periods. Whatever the situation is, don’t ever compromise your hygiene. It is a must that you have a hygiene kit with you.
What’s in the kit?
- Enough supply of your trusted sanitary pads or tampons. Some women also prefer to use menstrual cups. They said cups and tampons are perfect if you’re going to soak in the water.
- Wet wipes and/or tissue. You don’t always have a water supply on the trail so it is best to bring wet wipes with you. I suggest the unscented ones.
- Hand sanitizers. Of course, before and after changing pads make sure your hands are clean.
- Extra clothes for emergency.
- DON’T forget your dates.
Let us be mindful of our dates. I understand that some of us don’t have regular periods so just be prepared for emergencies. It’s better safe than sorry.
- DON’T go when you have terrible and unbearable cramps.
When you have painful red days, or maybe you always experience cramps on your period, then you have to think about it carefully. While strenuous exercises like hiking or trekking relieve the cramps for some women, it worsens for others. Sure, there are pain relievers available but if they don’t work for you, I suggest you don’t go. Because you are not only going to make yourself uncomfortable, but you might inconvenience your colleagues, too.
- DON’T be ashamed about it.
Men don’t go through it but they are aware that girls do. It might be a bit awkward but it’s completely okay. With the rising numbers of women hikers nowadays, trek leaders and guides already know how to handle this kind of situation. So, let them know.
- DON’T leave your pads or tampons in the ‘wild’.
Dearies, please remember our sanitary pads don’t biodegrade. Don’t leave them in the mountains. You don’t want to see this kind of wastes when you climb a mountain, do you? Be responsible for disposing of them properly. I strongly suggest you bring a trash bag intended for this waste. Personally, I always bring a separate zip lock pouch only intended for this kind of trash. There is also a technique on how to wrap your sanitary pads properly in order for it not to leave stain and foul odor, you may look it up online.
DON’T let your period keep you off the trail.
Our period can be uncomfortable but if we learn how to handle them, it will never keep us off the trail anymore. So, choose your products wisely and always be prepared for emergencies.
Over to you, have you trekked on your period before? Or do you know anyone who handles it well? Or do you have other tips? We’d love to hear from you.
‘Til our next adventure!
Love, Ace and Demi