Ladies, let’s talk about menopause. This is a subject no one really likes to talk about, but we all should. The other day I was talking to a client and she said, why did nobody warn me about this menopause stuff? She has plenty of older ladies in her family, but no one ever talked to her about menopause.
Menopause is the point in which menstrual cycles permanently stop. A woman is said to be menopausal when she hasn’t gotten her period in over a year. However, getting to that point can be quite a journey. Most women will experience symptoms of menopause for years before they are actually considered menopausal and living life without a period.
Perimenopause, or the transitional time before a female is considered menopausal, is a confusing time. Experiences vary from woman to woman. Some ladies enter perimenopause in their 30s while others do not experience these symptoms until their 50s! Symptoms vary greatly and some women have no symptoms at all.
Every body reacts differently to the hormone changes of menopause, but most women tend to experience weight fluctuations. Many women actually come to me during this time because they have gained weight and cannot figure out why. So let’s go over a few signs that you may have entered this perimenopause stage, and how you can avoid gaining weight because of it.
The body produces less estrogen as it gets ready for menopause, and this can make ovulation pretty unpredictable. Women will experience period changes like: longer cycles, heavier cycles, shorter cycles, worsened cramps, missed periods, etc. If you think your periods have been different lately, start keeping a journal. Write down how long and how bad your period was. If your period is acting funky, talk to your doctor about your hormone levels and ask if you many be entering menopause.
As I said above, menopause messes with the body’s hormone levels. There will be days where your body does not produce enough estrogen as well as days where it produces too much. Your body will try to compensate and balance things out, which takes a lot of work and can cause fatigue and brain fog. Exercise and a brain-boosting diet can help combat brain fog. Keeping the mind active with puzzles like sudoko is also very helpful.
As I said before, this is the symptom that tends to bring woman to me at this time. The decline in estrogen in the body causes fat cells in the abdominal area to begin storing more fat. This doesn’t mean you should just sit down and take it though. Strength training and a healthy diet will help keep the belly fat off. However, if losing weight used to be easy for you… it will likely be more difficult during this perimenopause stage. So get ready to work. Train with me or create your own workout routine. But go into your fitness program knowing you will need to work harder and do more than you did in previous years.