Movement During Menopause Matters

Movement During Menopause Matters

I contemplated jokingly beginning this blog with some food-related analogy, quote, or quirk … just to pull your strings a bit – what can I say, I can be a bit silly at times.

Just in case you were wondering, no, we aren’t talking about food again. 

This is me, letting out a sigh of relief with you.

But, in this edition of Reassessing with Dr. Renata (because, why not) we will be talking about what should be incorporated along with food to help you look and feel your best during menopause …

Drumroll please …


For women going through menopause, regular physical exercise is essential.  No, you don’t need to run a marathon or begin CrossFit, but you should get into a habit of adding physical activity to your daily routine.  And if you’re already physically active, you’re ahead of the game!  Maybe now you can begin switching up your routine a bit or exploring other physical activities to rotate into your regimen to reap even more benefits from physical activity.

There are several reasons fitness and regular physical activity are important during menopause – included, but not limited to, preventing weight gain, reducing the risk of cancer, strengthening your bones, reducing the risk of other diseases, and boosting your mental health.

I can remember looking through my parent’s old photo albums, starring at baby pictures of myself, and concentrating on the rolls of skin that flopped over my shoes.  I know, I know, most people would describe those baby rolls as “cute” or “adorable,” but for me, it was a reminder that my issues with weight began before I was even old enough to be aware that there was an issue at all let alone take control of it. 

At the age of twelve I tried my first diet, which was a complete failure because … well, I was twelve.  By fourteen I’d had enough of being called “chubby” and decided to join a gym and only drink water.  I had some success, but that too was short-lived.

Between the ages of eighteen and thirty-five my husband and I had five children and with each pregnancy losing excess weight became more challenging than before. 

At age thirty-seven, I found a running routine and finally achieved my goal weight.  By no means was I “a runner” – I ran out of desperation and unfortunately my newfound routine and achievements didn’t last.  Over time, between my long commute to work and twelve-to-sixteen-hour workdays, running became a thing of the past and so did my goal weight.

I finally decided to be reasonable.  I knew that if I wanted to not only reach my goal weight again, but most importantly FEEL good about myself, I had to set goals I could maintain.  As a result, I implemented a routine which included rest time as well – this is where I came up with the PAUSE Formula outlined in Chapter 3 of my book, “It’s Time for a PAUSE.”

Strengthening bones is another reason fitness and regular physical activity are important during menopause.  According to the Mayo Clinic, “after menopause, exercise may help reduce bone loss, reducing the risk of fractures and osteoporosis.”

During my Case Studies research I met with Lidia – a fifty-three-year-old woman who was diagnosed with osteopenia (or, bone loss) prior to seeking out my services.  Lidia stopped her exercise routine because of fear of breaking a bone.  I explained to Lidia that staying physically active and getting daily exercise are especially important for midlife women during the transitional years and came up with a weekly exercise schedule for her.  Not only did Lidia lose weight, but her osteopenia improved, helping her avoid osteoporosis in the long term.

I advocate implementing exercise and physical activity to every woman on her way towards and in the thick of menopause’s wrath.  While becoming and even maintaining physical fitness are essential components in beginning and maintaining the journey to looking great that isn’t the main goal – at least not for me.

For me physical activity is an emotional outlet for stress.  It is therapeutic when I challenge my body. I often begin my workouts in stress mode, but once I get into it, I feel amazing.  Exercise, meditation, and yoga help clear my mind and relax my body and a relaxed mind and body are the formula to health and happiness.

Remember, you only get one body – so you might as well take care of it while you can.

Let’s get moving!

~Dr. Renata

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