Luteal phase is the period AFTER you ovulate- between ovulation and your period. This is usually pretty consistant for most women (average is 12-16 days- under 10 days is a concern.) The pre-ovulatory period before you ovulate can be more variable among different women and over different cycles for the same woman. If you haven't read it, I totally recommend the book Taking Charge of Your Fertility by Toni Weschler- it gives you far more accurate ways of reading your body's signals than counting days on a calendar. Upon reading it I actually learned that I was NOT ovulating when I thought I was based on calendar methods and I had a luteal phase defect making it hard to conceive- it's definitely worth a read!
at 12:38 AM on Nov. 15, 2009