Staying Fit Through Menopause and Beyond
“Take care of your body. It’s the only place you have to live.” – Jim Rohn
Menopause can be a tough period for many women. With hot flushes, night sweats, sleep problems and mood swings, it can be difficult to find the energy and mood to exercise. Yet, it is during this period of time that exercise is especially helpful.
Woman’s metabolism tends to slow down during menopause. Because of this she’ll notice that she’s prone to gaining weight too. These changes can be demoralising for women and many can allow their weight gain get out of control. Exercise will help with this issue.
There are many benefits of exercising during menopause. Some of these benefits are:
· Reduces menopausal symptoms
· Improves your balance and strength as you age
· Prevents osteoporosis
· Lowers risk of type 2 diabetes, heart disease, cancer, dementia, etc.
· Prevents/controls weight gain
As you can see, many of these problems often arise as women age and regular exercise will put you in much better stead when it comes to avoiding all these health issues.
It can be tough to exercise during menopause because your joints and muscles may ache too. Many women report that their shoulders and neck often hurt during menopause and their hips, knees and ankles may ache too.
The best person to speak to regarding these problems will be your doctor. He/she may be able to prescribe you some pain relief/anti-inflamatory medication.
During menopause, you may wish to do activities that don’t aggravate your pain. Walking is a great exercise as is yoga. You do not need to engage in high impact exercise. Swimming is fantastic too because it is both cardio and resistance training in nature and it’s low impact.
Sleep is an important part a daily routine and during menopause this can be disrupted, however if you exercise early in the day you will sleep better and also prevent headaches caused by sleep deprivation, which is pretty common during menopause.
If you experience hot flushes, you may wish to join a gym with an air conditioned environment to work out in. Stay hydrated with lots of water and wear clothing that is slightly loose so that your body can cool off. After exercising, you can have a cold shower.
It’s also important to watch your calorie intake. As we age, our basal metabolic rate (BMR) decreases and your body needs less calories. Most people fail to realize this and carry on eating the same amounts that they’re accustomed to and end up gaining weight because the excess calories are shuttled off into their fat stores. You need to eat less to prevent this from happening.
With age comes a gradual loss of muscle mass. This is known as sarcopenia and affects all adults even those who are active. When you have less muscle in your body, your BMR will drop and you’ll burn less calories.
The best way to retard this process is to engage in strength training. This will force your body to retain muscle to handle the demands placed upon it. It’s especially important for women to focus on strength training as they age because they have less lean muscle than men. A Ballet Be Fit session or Yoga is a great way to build your strength training without too much impact on the body.
Once you get past menopause, things will get much easier. What’s important is that you stay active and do your best to exercise and stay fit during this trying period. This is one of the most defining moments in a woman’s life. Keep consistency with your exercise and healthy eating habits. Then and only then will you stay fit and healthy all the way through your golden years.
We have loads of classes on offer to help you through this period in your life and we even offer a one to one coaching session if this is something that you are interested in. Just link to our home page for more information.