Does exercise help with perimenopause?
Perimenopause is the transition period that occurs before menopause. It tends to start when women reach their mid-40s, but it can begin earlier or later and may continue for several years before a woman’s periods finally stop.
Perimenopausal symptoms can vary as the female body undergoes hormonal changes that occur naturally through the ageing process. For some women, symptoms can be vague, and they may not even associate them with perimenopause, especially if they still have regular periods. But, for others, symptoms can be debilitating and may affect their daily life.
There are various things women can do to help them cope with the changes leading up to menopause, and focusing on exercise is one of them. Here’s why perimenopause fitness is so important.
During perimenopause, oestrogen levels drop in females. This imbalance in hormones is responsible for causing many of the uncomfortable symptoms that can occur during the menopausal years. Exercise is really beneficial for those experiencing perimenopausal symptoms as exercise helps regulate hormones, and increasing your heart rate can help improve oestrogen levels. This means that getting regular exercise can help to take the edge off symptoms.
Women going through perimenopause often report difficulties sleeping, which night sweats may exacerbate. Lack of sleep can impact daily life and can lead to health problems if not tackled. The good news is that being active can help you sleep better, and the effects are almost immediate. Studies have found that people who take just www.hopkinsmedicine.org/health/wellness-and-prevention/exercising-for-better-sleep 30 minutes of moderate exercise may see an improvement in their sleep quality on the same night</a>. The benefits may be even more significant for those who exercise outdoors, get fresh air and exercise in a natural environment.
Improved mental health
The imbalance of hormones that are a feature of perimenopause can impact a woman’s mental health. During this time, many women report feelings of low mood, anxiety, irritability and depression. Taking part in exercise, especially group activities where you can benefit from being with other people, can help to lift your mood – whether you’re experiencing perimenopausal symptoms or not.
Combat weight gain
During the menopausal years, women are prone to losing muscle mass and gaining abdominal fat. Changes in hormones may also contribute towards weight gain at this time. Therefore, engaging in exercise is especially important to help combat the extra pounds readily put on during this stage in life.
It can be difficult for many women to take up an exercise routine at this age, especially if they’ve been busy in the years before raising a family or focusing on their careers. Engaging in an outdoor group activity can be an excellent way to motivate yourself to get fit, especially if other people are in the same boat as you.
Support bone health
As perimenopause kicks in, a drop in the hormone oestrogen can lower muscle and bone mass, increasing a woman’s risk of developing osteoporosis and bone fractures. Exercise can help to strengthen muscles and bones and slow down the bone mass loss. Aerobic and strength training exercises are ideal for building strong bones and muscles, but they can also help to improve metabolism and burn excess fat.
If you’re experiencing perimenopausal symptoms and want to exercise to improve your health, give Bootcamp UK a try, your first 10 sessions are just £10!