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Muscle Stiffness and Menopause. The Dreaded Combo!

I remember when I used to leap out of bed in the morning and “glide” to the bathroom. Well perhaps I didn’t quite ‘glide’.  But when I look back, it certainly felt like it!

The early morning ‘stiff and awkward shuffle’ as you get out of bed, is a natural part of the ageing process.

This is partly due to your bone structure gradually changing.   As well as your tendons and ligaments getting shorter within your joints.

The good thing though, is you’re not alone.  Understanding this natural ageing process, helps you make simple changes.   To the way you train AND the type of movements you do, when you train.  Get these right and you’ll be gliding like a cat!

I’m not a cat fan (sorry to all you cat lovers) but I LOVE watching them move!  Amazing!

These body parts stiffen up first…..

  • Hips
  • Thoracic (middle) Spine
  • Knees
  • Shoulders

Feel familiar?

 

1.  Make Daily Stretching Your Friend!

Stretch the above areas each day.  With a series of dynamic (flowing) and static (holding) stretches.  You’ll move more fluidly and you’ll feel lighter in your body.

Have a simple daily stretch routine you do EVERY morning.

The yoga Sun Salutation is ideal.   Or the Dynamic Stretch Sequence which is in all the CoreStrength50plus programs. These dynamic styles of stretching change the way you feel and move for the rest of the day. Combine this with exercises that strengthen the muscles that support your joints.  You’ll be moving like a cat in no time!

 

2.  Exercise to Strengthen and Lengthen Your Body

Feel stiff and uncomfortable when you get up?  Exercise!  Don’t skip it.  Make sure it includes movements that have you………

  • Bending
  • Reaching
  • Twisting
  • Pulling and pushing

These types of movements will protect you from niggling injuries.

“But I really don’t like exercising!”

You don’t have to “love” exercising………many people don’t!  However, I’ve never met anyone that didn’t feel better after an exercise session.

Whenever you try and talk yourself out of doing your workout – focus on that feeling you have AFTER you’ve worked out!  You can’t put a price on that.   And how good your body AND mind feels!

Spend the next 20-30 years in pain and discomfort?  Or do a daily stretch and exercise routine?  It’s a no-brainer really!

None of us are the same.  You’re unique.  So find something that challenges and inspires you to WANT to move.

Strengthen and Lengthen

Focus on the idea at this stage in life, of not only strengthening your muscles….. but always LENGTHENING them.  None of this needs to be tricky or expensive – just make it consistent!

Mix It Up!

Yeah, you need to challenge and push your body to make changes.  But you also need to find a way to enjoy it.  Or semi-enjoy it!  So get a mix of workouts or physical outdoor activities that make YOU feel good.  So you don’t get bored.

Keep it interesting and challenging.  And you’ll want to do it! 

3.  Get Twisting!

Always include “twists” in your workouts.  Exercises that make you rotate your spine.

Roller twist to keep flexible during menopause

Twisting movements free up the muscles down your spine.   Stretch out your ab muscles and give your abdominal organs a good massage in the process!  This creates flexibility and free movement, in your body.

 

4.  Trigger Point Roller

This is a must-have in your training kit.   trigger point roller for exercises during menopause

Your body is covered from head to toe with a fine membrane of connective tissue called “fascia”.  This fascia becomes constricted and tight due to…….

  • Stress
  • Dehydration
  • Poor Nutrition
  • Bad Posture
  • Lack of Exercise

Use your roller before every workout.  It stretches and loosens the fascia.   Resulting in less muscle and joint pain AND increased circulation. A win/win!

 

5.  Consistency Is Key

Get your butt into a routine!  Even if you’re not a ‘routine’ person.  Make exercising a part of your daily routine.

On your workout days, when your energy is low or time’s an issue, always have a backup plan.

Do a 10 minute round of your workout.  (All the CoreStrength50plus Workouts are designed in 10 minute rounds – so there’s no need for ‘I haven’t got the time’ excuses!)

When your body (not your mind) doesn’t feel up to a certain style of workout – don’t skip your workout, just do something else…….

  • go for a walk
  • take a bike ride
  • or do a stretch routine

It’s all about being consistent.  Consistency will get you results!

Make it non-negotiable.  You brush your teeth, in the morning –  you DO your stretching and workout.

To feel agile and flexible in your body is a powerful thing!

 These 5 simple steps will get you there!

 

Don’t give up or give in!

PS.  Ready to get toned muscle back on your body?  But need motivation?  Check out my 20 minute Muscle Toning Programs.  Designed by a woman in her 50’s FOR women in their 50s…..click on the link here……….