While most women – myself included! – suffered from weight gain during perimenopause which stayed with me until half way through full menopause, we did find ways to shift it!
Here’s what you need to stop menopause weight gain and get the scale moving in the right direction again!
Whether it is your New Year’s resolution, a sudden wake-up call when you step on the scale, a weight gain trend that seems to defy logic (yes, menopause will do that to you!) or a preventive action knowing what is ahead in this menopausal stage of your life… following a consistent weight loss plan will provide the best long term benefits.
As you might expect, no quick weight loss miracles here. Losing weight is like anything else we do in life. An ongoing commitment with specific actions is what works best.
What diet can I eat to prevent further weight gain during menopause?
First, a healthy eating plan is a must. You have probably heard this many times, but a diet that consists of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, protein and limited intake of processed foods will put you on a path to weight loss.
I like to have something sweet with my coffee, so that is one of my biggest challenges when trying to lose weight. I’ve found that something small, just 3 or 4 bites, with natural ingredients and limited sugar will give me the little sweet boost that I am looking for. It’s all about portion control and commitment to ‘the plan’.
Sometimes we need to consider other factors that affect our ability to lose weight, particularly during menopause. As our bodies become menopausal, our metabolism slows down and we gain weight.
What health plan can help me?
I don’t know about you, but I’m not one for group meetings, sharing, weigh-ins, etc. It is a fantastic way for many, many people to control and lose weight, but it’s not for me.
I’m more of a self motivated person and value my privacy. So I look for weight loss plans that I can monitor and access online.
There are some great online programs to help you plan and track your weight loss, some that even include a fitness plan.
Denise Austin is a well known fitness expert who also provides a comprehensive diet program. Let America’s favorite fitness guru help you with recipes, tips, more. I like the fact that Denise Austin offers a total plan, including diet and exercise. Speaking of…
What Fitness plan should I follow while on Menopause?
Another critical factor is adding the right balance of exercise into your daily routine and lifestyle.
I love to walk, and living in sunny southwest Florida means that I can always walk outside because it is rarely too cold to step out and get some fresh air as well as a great view while I’m walking for exercise.
But I also know that strength training is critical for maintaining muscle mass, keeping my metabolism up and helping me to look my best as I get older. So I have been lifting weights for about fifteen years now, since the age of forty or so.
Fortunately my husband has also been committed to a fitness program for many years so we work out together and share our free weights. Well, his are a lot heavier than mine but we do share a few!
Or, join a gym and use both the weight training and the aerobic options that are available to you.
Here is something else I have recently put into practice, even though I have known it for a long time.
When it comes to exercise, your muscles need some variety from time to time. If you do the same workout time after time, never changing it up, your muscles will become used to the routine and may not respond as positively as you would like.
What to do when you hit a plateau?
So here is a tip for you: find a new and different way to accomplish your exercise routine. If you are a walker, like me, ride a bike…swim…roller blade…play tennis…dance…do what your age, fitness level and body will allow.
I have started doing an cardio aerobic routine before I go for my walk. It’s not long – about 13 minutes total – but it is constant movement and really gets my heart rate going. Then I follow up with a brisk walk.
I can tell it is making a difference because my muscles, particularly my legs, are telling me that something is definitely going on! And that’s a good thing.
Slow and steady weight loss is a safe and effective way to lose weight, particularly for a New Year’s resolution.
Combine a healthy eating plan with the right balance of cardio and weight training, and you’ll find that losing the extra weight gained during perimenopause is actually very achievable!