Men… O… Pause. Am I going crazy? Is this my mid-life crisis? I keep feeling… lots of feelings.

From one second to the next I am feeling sweaty, irritable, MOODY, tired, the list goes on.

Menopause is defined as “the period in a woman’s life between 45-50; the ceasing of menstruation.” Thanks, Google. But it is way more than that, and there is no easy way to talk about this monster of a situation.

Natural Menopause Symptom Relief that Really Works

When I was first introduced to Tune Up Fitness® I was at a fitness convention in NYC. I took a class one morning, taught by Jill Miller, called Breathe In, Bliss Out. Little did I know that that one class would set me up for not only a stress-free fitness weekend but some seven years later, I would be implementing those exercises/movement patterns to treat my menopause symptoms.

I felt fine up until 50 years. Then my body did a complete 180. My cycle became irregular, I didn’t know when to expect my period, sometimes I would get it once a month, other times twice a month. It became the control board for my emotions.

I thought I would be ready for this transformation. My whole life I heard, “Well, you’ll feel this and that, maybe even this!” But nothing could truly prepare me for the change.

Everyone’s body is different. I experienced a lack of energy and stamina. I needed a minimum of eight hours of sleep a night. Hot flashes were present daily. Anxiety definitely got worse. My concentration levels changed because my estrogen and progesterone levels were fluctuating. Fatigue became a daily issue and irregular bleeding has been the hardest.

 

Taking time for self-care, including conscious breathing, to ease the symptoms of menopause

My fitness program also had to be altered because of my energy levels. I knew that I still needed to work out, but my definition of exercise changed.

I had to lessen the intensity of my workouts, and focus more on self-care and recovery so that I could function. I had to be able to balance work and home. The many hats that I was wearing, were literally “wearing” me out. And I was neglecting the most important one, self-care. I needed to take more time for myself.

Self-Care to Support Menopause Symptoms

Women in menopause have to step away from society’s expectations. It is not easy to have so many bodily transitions, and still keep up with work, social life, love life, as well as children.

We are warriors. We do the same things as males, with all of the heavy challenges. So when our bodies are asking for some help–rest, less work, more sleep, etc. We must listen!

I decided that the holistic approach was the way I was going to go. This meant supplements, hydration, smart nutrition decisions, and my life-saver, the Coregeous® Ball.

Practice #1: Sustained Compression – Rest your abdomen on the Coregeous® ball and breathe slowly in and out.

I used the Coregeous® ball for constructive rest, supported bridge, belly breathing, as well as to calm myself down, relax and release cramps.

The anxiety of not knowing when I was going to feel the uncomfortable bloating or the moodiness increased at a rapid rate. So I would take the Coregeous® ball and slowly massage all of my abdominal layers.

Then I would use my breath to guide me to a state of relaxation. Which would, in turn, allow my organs, specifically the female reproductive organs, to relax.

When I first used the Coregeous® ball on my belly it felt like a brick. But with time and patience, it became my saving grace throughout this challenging period.

Addressing Anxiety, Mood and Physical Discomfort with Self-Massage

I am now able to change my mood, anxiety level, and discomfort through my self-massage practice. If I am pressed for time, I will just use Sustained Compression with abdominal breathing technique (see above).

If I am trying to reduce cramping or uncomfortable belly feeling, the Cross-Fiber and the Contract/Relax work wonders on the rectus abdominis (front ab muscles).

Technique #2: Contract/Relax – Place the Coregous® ball under your abdomen and as you inhale, firm your muscles into it. As you exhale, relax the belly.

Technique #3: Cross-Fiber – Rock your body right and left, pushing your abdominal contents side-to-side.

Just 3-5 minutes will not only reset your nervous system, but it will help significantly to reduce the overall belly discomfort and soften the female organs working overtime as well.

My daily mantra, or Sankalpa as we call it in the Yoga Tune Up® world, is “Just Breathe.”

It’s a constant reminder that helps shift me out of fight or flight throughout my journey of “midlifeness”.

Practice #4: Explore and breathe – Move the Coregeous® ball to other parts of your torso and breathe slowly, connecting to your inner life, soothing yourself with your breath and self-massage.

Whether I am using the breath to calm me down or guide me through a series of self-care
strategies, I can instantly go there and know that I will find a way to work through whatever
challenges this life throws my way.

 

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Tammy Gruber

Tammy Gruber is a certified Pilates instructor with Physicalmind Institute and currently finishing up her comprehensive bridge program with Balanced Body University. Tammy is also a NASM CPT . She is the founder of A Wellness Life, a body mind and soul studio where she shares her love of Pilates, Personal Training ,Yoga Tune Up® and transformation from within. She started out in the fitness world some twenty plus years ago as a certified personal trainer and group exercise instructor. It was at ECA Fitness Convention six years ago that she first met Jill Miller who was teaching a class called “Breathe in, Bliss out.” From that moment she was hooked and took the leap to become certified in this amazing work. Tammy is also a certified TRX instructor and Tabata Bootcamp™ instructor. Her philosophy is every day brings new experiences and feelings… meet your clients where they are and allow them to transform with lots of support, education and FUN.

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Isabelle Audet

I have been massaging with the Coregeous ball for some time and using it on my belly but never realize that doing so, I was not only massaging my digestive organs but … my female organs as well.
In my menopause and having lots of hot flush… I will certainly massage even more with the Coregeous ball. I also liked how you said you needed to ‘’focus more on self-care and recovery’’. I do need to practice this as well.
Thank you

Cynthia Racine

I am always amazed at how much our gut’s organs need some love (movement, massage) and we just don’t know it if we don’t take the time to listen. It is very nice to know the Coregeons can help so much to rebalance and relax when menopause happens.

Lucie Pivin

Wow! Sacré ménopause ! découverte du ballon coregeous pour un usage thérapeutique et bienfaiteur .

Gina Anzaldua Stevenson

With all the emphasis in yoga on young perfect bodies in magical poses I appreciate content relating to actual students needs and concerns. Tummy time can be so soothing and wonderful with the Coregeous ball. Thank you for the practical article

Toni Dee

I wish that I had the knowledge and the use of the Coregeous ball when I was going through Menopause… I spent hundreds of dollars on massage therapy to do exactly what the ball does. At 61 I’m still having trouble with sleep and the “who’s body is this?” feeling – So the Coregeous is my nightly friend. Thanks for the article

Kristin Harris

Tammy, what a much needed article that contributes greatly to peri-menopausal women. Very rarely do we hear words of wisdom, nor witness how to be embracing of these changes in the intimacy of our own body, or inherit secrets that can help alleviate pre-menopausal symptomology. This article imbeds gems of wisdom for women at any age. Although I have a ways to go before experiencing these changes that come with middle age, I can say that I am decorating my tree with valuable information and techniques that I will remember to apply. An why not incorporate them now? I really… Read more »

Ashley Shears

Great article!

Rani Bechar

Menopause is such a muted conversation- it’s treated like a silent disease and all one ever hears about are the terrible symptoms women experience, and it’s as though there’s nothing anyone can do about it . I just remember my MoM standing in front of the freezer and being really erratic and always feeling physically and emotionally miserable. Now that I’m in my mid forties, I’m also experiencing physical and emotional changes likely associated with imminent menopause and It’s really heartening to see more and more women in the mindful movement space talking about menopause along with their experiences and… Read more »

Rose Moro

Nice to see we are not alone and to find ways to aid in relief.

Tara Young

So excited to share with my female colleagues…and no drugs!

Robyn

Hi Tammy, thanks for the informative article on helpful ways to relieve symptoms of menopause. I actually have some clients that had been discussing some of the changes they were going through and I am excited to be able to offer them some suggestions to help. Thanks!

MISSY TILLMAN

Thank you for the reminder to “Just Breath.” That has been something I have needed to hear often, but particularly the last few weeks.

Paula

This is an excellent way to down regulate and massage the enteric nervous system. Loved this article.

Kratika

Every woman goes through his phase and fees a lot of issues. Good to have some knowledge on how to get relief.

Ann

Thank you for your post on Menopause, “the change”, another option to help women go through the doors of our change. Very positive and informative. I can’t wait to recieve my equiptment (Balls), although I have some in my studio which I will try this tomorrow!