Training Articles

Running and the menopause

There’s no doubt that the menopause has an adverse effect on your running, from daily exhaustion and hot flushes to loss of sleep at night. With lots of women also affected by an early menopause and perimenopause, we’re setting out to give you some advice on how running might help to improve your symptoms, and give you the chance to carry on your running as routinely as possible.

First, we should remember that every women’s experience is different from the next. There’s no one solution to finding your best running routine around the menopause.

Beating the night sweats

As we mentioned before in our article on how to prevent yourself getting into injury trouble, sleep plays a huge role in the body’s recovery after training sessions. A large number of women going through the menopause report symptoms of insomnia, with the body’s production of melatonin decreasing and the body working around the clock to cool your temperature through sweat. This ends in cycles of sweat then a cold chill, sweat and a cold chill.

What can runners do?

Cooling the body before the hot flush

During the menopause, your body is less efficient in regulating your temperature. Usually, when you exercise and your body begins to heat up, your blood vessels respond by expanding, in turn sending blood closer to the skin to cool down. This response is muted somewhat by lower levels of oestrogen, so women experiencing the menopause are likely to endure hot flushes – made worse by exercise and running.

What can runners do?

Not letting it get you down

The physiological symptoms of the menopause are well-known, but it also affects the wellbeing of women. Injury, loss of the sleep, hot flushes and a period of unpredictability can be difficult to manage, so the importance of keeping up your usual routine is more important than ever.

What can runners do?

Managing expectations

The science of the menopause and its symptoms make running difficult. It just does, and it always will. The menopause gives women a chance to get to know their bodies even more than they did before and manage expectations accordingly, setting them up for a realistic hope of continuing with their running routine post-menopause.

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