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Gympass x Wild Working Through Menopause Hub

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Menopause is nothing to feel ashamed about. It’s a natural time of transition that marks a new chapter in life.

Gympass found that nearly half of perimenopausal and menopausal women aged 45-64 have felt embarrassed by their menopause symptoms at work.

Less than 20% of women said their employer offers menopausal support.

With the help of our partner Wild, we’ve created this hub filled with facts, tools, and expert tips to support you through every stage of your menopause journey.

To support employers and women in the workplace, Gympass has also collaborated with Henpicked: Menopause in the Workplace to create a free eBook Working Through Menopause. Packed with practical advice it signposts employers to resources, advice and training solutions. Download your pack here.

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Let’s talk the stages of menopause

What is perimenopause?

Perimenopause is the time leading up to menopause. This is when female reproductive hormones start to decline, and often wildly fluctuate around the age of 45. On average, this stage lasts for 4 to 7 years [1].

Women may start to notice changes in their “normal” cycles, like more frequent or irregular cycles and heavier or lighter periods. They may also experience other physical and emotional symptoms due to changing hormone concentrations [2], including:

• Fatigue 

• Muscle and joint pain 

• Hot flushes 

• Weight gain 

• Vaginal dryness and soreness

• Difficulty sleeping 

• Anxiety 

• Irritability 

• Low mood 

• Mood swings

What is menopause?

Menopause literally means “the last period,” or when a woman hasn’t had a period for 12 consecutive months. It only lasts a day, although the whole process leading up to menopause can take several years - even up to 12 years. The average age of menopause is 51, but every woman is different. It can happen earlier or later [2].



What is postmenopause?

Postmenopause refers to a period of time following menopause. On average, women spend a third of their lives in this stage. 

The symptoms experienced during perimenopause may cease, but a range of other symptoms and health conditions [3] may begin due to how low female reproductive hormones are at this time. These symptoms can include:

• Increased risk 

   of osteoporosis 

• Heart disease 

• Urinary inconsistency

• Decreased sex drive 

• Vaginal dryness and atrophy 

• Changes in metabolism,

   resulting in weight gain

Beat the heat

Hot flushes and night sweats are a result of fluctuating hormones during perimenopause. They affect 3 or 4 out of every 5 women. For every 1 in 5 women, their hot flushes can be so frequent and severe that they become debilitating [1]

The good news? For those who are already physically active, exercise can reduce the frequency and severity of hot flushes. Exercise can make hot flushes initially worse for those who aren’t already active, but they’ll gradually get better over time [2].

Top Tip: Make sure to stay adequately hydrated during exercise and consider using cooling strategies before exercising to prevent hot flushes.


Make an impact

Our bone turnover, or the balance between bone resorption and bone formation, is modulated partly by our hormones. Declining oestrogen levels during perimenopause and low levels of oestrogen postmenopause can increase the rate at which bone tissue breaks down. 

Research shows that women can lose 20% of their bone mass within 5 to 7 years post menopause [3]. This can result in reduced bone health, making women more susceptible to conditions like osteoporosis. 

Top Tip: Reduce the risk of osteoporosis by taking part in regular weight-bearing exercise and strength training. High-impact and weight-bearing exercises are thought to be the best tools to increase bone mass and prevent its loss.

Get strong

Studies have shown that oestrogen plays a key role in muscle function, maintenance, and overall strength [4]. When oestrogen levels start to decline around perimenopause, our body’s composition, strength, and ability to recover post-training may also change. 

Top Tip: To prevent a loss of strength, take part in muscle-strengthening exercises with a focus on strength and power-based exercises.


Get sounder Zzzs

Sleep is essential for performance and recovery. Poor sleep has adverse effects on not only performance and training but also on overall health and wellbeing. 

It’s reported that those in perimenopause and postmenopause might suffer from poor sleep as a result of changing hormones [5].

Top Tip: To reduce sleep disruptions, adopt sleep strategies such as:

• Establishing a regular bedtime routine 

• Setting a consistent bed and wake time 

• Eliminating light and screens before bed 

• Investing in a good quality bed, pillows, and mattress 

• Keeping sleeping environments cool 

• Cutting down on alcohol and caffeine 

Remember: Whilst exercise helps sleep, don’t exercise close to bedtime as the endorphins released can prevent sound sleep. 


Pain in the…

Many women can experience vulva pain and vaginal atrophy as a result of declining and low oestrogen levels during perimenopause and postmenopause, respectively. Whilst these issues might lead to painful sex, they might also interfere with other activities such as cycling and running [6].

Top Tip: Consider using a lubricant or asking a doctor/GP about topical oestrogen creams or tablets to bring relief when dealing with pain.

Take some time to relax

Find your peace

The symptoms of perimenopause aren’t just physical. There are many psychological symptoms, like low mood, irritability, anxiety, and panic attacks, that can affect daily life as well as performance and training.

Top Tip: Practicing yoga can improve mental health. Try adapting it into any regular training routine to help reduce psychological symptoms and improve wellbeing. Additionally, eating a well-rounded and nutrient-rich diet can boost overall mood.

Kick it into gear

Fatigue, low energy levels, and reduced motivation can be some of the most debilitating perimenopause symptoms. These are caused by the drop in oestrogen, which is typically known for its positive effetcs on energy and motivation.

Top Tip: Even small amounts of exercise or activity can increase serotonin levels and improve mood, energy, and motivation. Just a brisk 15-minute walk might be all that’s needed to overcome symptoms of low energy and motivation. That said, everyone should listen to their body and focus on rest and recovery when needed!


One for the mind

Poor concentration and “foggy” memory are common symptoms reported by some women going through perimenopause. Since oestrogen is directly involved in the function of neurotransmitters in the brain, it may become difficult to concentrate as they wildly fluctuate.

Top Tip: Exploring meditation or mindfulness can help reduce some of the symptoms of poor concentration and can help improve memory. Make sure to stay hydrated during exercise, as dehydration can also severely affect your ability to concentrate.

Build a community

Many women report feeling lonely, misunderstood, or uncared about during perimenopause, especially when experiencing any of the physical and emotional symptoms of perimenopause.

Top Tip: Taking up a new activity or joining a team sports club can help reduce loneliness and increase feelings of belonging. If the club you want doesn’t exist, start one!

Take a pause to learn more

Discover everything you need to feel supported during your journey.

Download your Working Through Menopause pack

More on Gympass

Gympass is a complete corporate wellbeing platform that ignites and fuels every journey to feel good — including yours. In our variety of affordable plans, you can explore our network of mind and body partners to support your wellbeing.

Video - What is Gympass

Top tips with Wild expert Sahana


Wild is an app elevating the capabilities of the female body by supporting individuals at perimenopause, during menopause, and postmenopause.