As with so many things, the answer is, “maybe.” There are so many different aspects to RED-S / REDs (Relative Energy Deficiency in Sport), and amenorrhea is only one of them. Certified strength and conditioning specialist Amanda Tierney shares advice on when you may be able to cut back on your exercising vs. stopping altogether.


Read the transcript

[Tina]  Do I really have to stop running or exercising to get my period back? Can’t I just cut back instead?

[Amanda]  The answer to that is, “Maybe.”  It’s definitely individualized and I think that’s why working with a really skilled, multi-disciplinary team is helpful, just because they can help assess, like, “Do I really need to take some time off?” or “Do I have to scale back?”  “Do I have to change the mode of kind of what exercise I’m doing?”

I also think that, you know, there are so many parts to Relative Energy Deficiency in Sport, and not having your period is just one of them, so if that’s the only thing that you’re struggling with, you may be able to stick with some running while you are going through this process of trying to regain your period. But if you’re dealing with a lot of the other aspects, like bone health concern, and like anxiety, depression, GI distress, all these other things that potentially could  kind of round out the whole picture of your health and well-being, it may really be a good time for you just to talk with your treatment team and maybe take some time off. And they can give you a pretty good kind of route of which way you can take in order to reach your running goals.

 [Tina]  So for someone who is at this realization; this is definitely something I’m working through; would you say it’s okay to try and cut back first, see if things seem to start to come together? How long would you have people give a period of like, maybe cut back for three months and then if it’s still not back, then go see someone? What would you say to someone who’s thinking, like, “Can I at least try on my own first?” 

 [Amanda]  I mean, I think you can try anything. I think it’s ultimately up to you; it’s your body and it’s your mind, and I think that  it really just depends on your level of commitment, your level of struggle, and your level of support. So yes, I think that you could absolutely try anything.  If you have the resources to be able to kind of get a clear picture of  how long, or when you should cut back or stop, I think that’s ideal, but I think that  it’s really up to you, on kind of your level of like,  “Do I want to have my period back?” or “Do I feel like I have to?” 

[Tina]  Being honest with yourself. Okay yeah, thank you; that’s helpful. Thank you, Amanda.

check it out

Recovering from RED-S is hard. It’s even harder if you’re working through it alone. Even if you have professional support, they’re not available 24-7, and that can lead to going down search engine rabbit holes that have the potential to derail everything.

Our online resource, RED-S: Realize. Reflect. Recover, will answer all those questions swimming around in your head about recovery. It will give you the opportunity to connect with the experts you’ve come to know here, and to surround  yourself with a community of others who are going through it too.

THANK YOU! to Athletic Greens and Tracksmith for supporting this YouTube series and RED-S: Realize. Reflect. Recover.

Go to to get five free travel packs of AG1 and a free one year’s supply of vitamin D3+K2 with your subscription!

When you go to and use the code TINA15 at checkout, you’ll get free shipping and Tracksmith will donate 5% of your order to Rising Hearts, the Indigenous-led nonprofit founded by Jordan Marie Daniels.

more about amanda:

Amanda Tierney, MS, CSCS, CEDS-S is located in St. Louis, MO and is originally from New Jersey/Philadelphia. She has two young kids, a wonderful husband, and a howling beagle mix. She is an eating disorder informed & sensitive fitness provider who works with athletes and general ED programming with safely integrating the movement/sport training/therapeutic recreation aspect to their recovery. Amanda has a private training practice,Discovering Balance: Fitness Coaching and Support, and is the director of The Victory Program and Fitness at McCallum Place. You can find her at

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