Putting it right here: How’s menopause going for you?
It’s a topic that’s FINALLY getting press. There’s a scientific and cultural awakening.
Some women begin perimenopause earlier than others, some seem to sail through it, and some hit physical and mental lows. Some of us experience the highs and lows day after day, and for some it lasts many years, including insomnia, sweats, all of it.
It took time but I figured it out.
As athletes (yes that’s you, if you move your body for a purpose), many of us beat ourselves up if we’re not performing to our highest bar. I remember when I was approaching 60 thinking, “if I just train more…”, and then when overtraining syndrome hit like a ton of bricks I felt like a failure. When I was no longer the fastest or strongest in a group ride it was beyond humbling. My routine now includes the rest days that I too often ignored when my coach programmed them into my training calendar. The lightbulb finally lit up. I am stronger now than I would have believed, if I had not had that lightbulb moment.
Space and grace.
We all begin to go through changes at some point after age 35, even if we don’t feel it yet. Hormones are changing. Muscle is diminishing – ugh- this is called sarcopenia, which means muscle loss, mainly related to age.
Read the science on the importance of resistance and aerobic training (plus nutrition!) for menopausal women.
So the way we train has to change too. We need to give ourselves space for perspective to understand our bodies, and grace to acknowledge what’s happening, and take the steps to work with it. With smart training you can get strong(er) at any age.
You get strong during recovery, not while you’re training.
Keep training to beat your personal racing bests, or crush your powerlifting records. But make sure to factor recovery into each workout, each day, each month, and year. Your training and performance will bear out the science. This is especially true for people going through menopause. Periodization works for athletes at every age and fitness level – scaling volume and intensity in periods through the year, the month, the week with training and recovery.
It takes focus to get in tune with your body to understand what you need.
And it takes more than just exercise. It’s about training. Our brains and our bodies are constantly evolving. It is our responsibility to be aware so adaptation can take place.
Movement is essential to life, so we need to train smart for it to be effective and to get strong.
Your program of smart training and recovery has to be about you. You can follow training in videos, figure it on your own, or get a coach who gets you, and understands your goals and needs.
Your incredible, resilient, body will respond to smart training.
You shouldn’t train hard every day. A 20 minute workout can be perfect after a good warmup. Efficiency => effectiveness.
HIIT workouts are great for menopausal people, and include LISS (low intensity steady state) workouts, focused strength days, and rest days, and YOU WILL ROCK!
I want to empower you to understand your body, to find your strong for the long game.