Sometimes I’m more prone to stress or rather cranky. Sometimes I’m full of energy and drive. All of this is very much related to which half of my cycle I’m in. That’s why I record it, to better understand and see the processes of my body. What used to be a flyer, like a small calendar, which was handed to me by my gynecologist, I have digitized and replaced with an app long time ago.
For a long time, all this was not important to me. When I stopped taking the pill after more than 11 years, because I am simply no longer convinced of it and I do not want to unnecessarily affect my body hormonally, it was clear to me that I must observe and document my cycle. First, just to know when to expect my period and to find my natural rhythm. Meanwhile, however, to interpret emotional fluctuations, to see my fertility and to draw conclusions about my general condition. Not only is it far cheaper and saves waste, it also gives you a better feel for your own cycle.
How does cycle tracking work?
Analog or with the help of an app, you make note of the first day of the period, the duration of the menstruation as well as all the signs that you want to record during your cycle. Typical symptoms such as breast sensitivity, cramps, fatigue, etc. and the cervical mucus observation are usually preset in apps and can be easily marked. This way, you keep track of important information about your own health and the length of the period – 3-7 days is the norm – and the total duration of the cycle: 28 days should be average.
If you want to do it all very accurate, it’s quite an effort. So far, I have used an app where I marked when to start a new cycle, and that’s usually it because I often don’t have that much time. In addition, apps are almost always inaccurate because each body is unique. I also have a basal thermometer, but the daily measurement was so inconvenient for me that unfortunately, I don’t use it and it was basically a bad buy. That’s why lately for cycle tracking I’m using Ava. Ava is a bracelet that does almost all of this on its own.
Cycle tracking with Ava
The Ava bracelet tracks a woman’s cycle in real-time. During sleep, Ava’s sensors collect data on nine different physiological parameters. The algorithm then detects the fertile window. It detects your body’s signals to recognize when you’re entering your fertile window. Ava shows the very first signs that the fertile window is beginning, and confirms when it ends.
Because Ava is a wearable device, it provides accurate information about the cycle with minimal effort. I wear the bracelet during sleep, synchronize the results with the app on my smartphone in the morning and gain insight e. g. on fertility, sleep, stress, and resting heart rate. Five physiological parameters are displayed in the app as charts, so I can see the patterns and changes throughout my cycle.
The advantage to other apps: It shows more fertile days than other methods and more personal physiological information. For women planning to become pregnant, the ovulation and fertility predictions can also be helpful. This way, it helps to plan the period of potential conception. Or, especially relevant for me: you can just keep track of your physical condition.
Exercise, poor sleep, eating habits, and more can create stress, even if you don’t feel stressed. I think it’s interesting that Ava reveals your physiological stress levels through a parameter called heart rate variability, empowering you to take action to reduce your stress levels. With Ava I’m also able to see how my sleep varies depending on what phase of my menstrual cycle I’m in, or whether too little sleep might have delayed my ovulation.
If you want to learn more about your cycle, track your fertility and/or become pregnant, Ava will become a useful everyday tool in the long term. Knowing more about my own body gives me a positive sense of control. It’s reassuring to see why I have certain discomforts and when they are likely to disappear again. That is the great strength of Ava: you get to know and understand your own cycle better.
Are you tracking your cycle via smartphone or so-called wearables like bracelets? I would be happy to receive tips and further ideas!
More Girl Talk? Read my post about the menstrual cup here.
* This article was written in cooperation with Ava. The bracelet was provided to me free of charge. Many thanks! I don’t recommend anything that I’m not convinced of. My opinion is always honest and can’t be bought.