We postmenopausal women gain doubly from making regular exercise part of our lives. Regular exercise keeps our muscles strong and boosts our production of testosterone, which we lose at menopause. Testosterone is the hormone that builds and maintains muscle, as well as stoking the fire of romance and intimacy. Exercise also gives our adrenal glands a boost toward producing more estrogen—the site from which we get most of our estrogen in postmenopause. Talk about yet another bushel basket of benefits from sweating for forty-five minutes most every day. This is very good news!
After fifty-five we lose what I call our “protective armor of hormones.” Then, our adrenal glands and specific places in our brain must take over the job once done by our ovaries. But, it is an imperfect transition, as many of us loudly agree. Now, research reveals that exercise helps our adrenals make more estrogen which help keeps our telomeres long. This action allows our brains to fire on all fronts and our memory banks to stay as crisp as a cracker. It also bumps up the level of estrogen circulating in our bodies which gives us a greater sense of well-being, helps us feel less irritable and more balanced, and contributes to our sexual comfort and desire. Additionally, with a gaggle of other hormones, like serotonin and dopamine, regular exercise doubles the dose of perks to our brain’s other receptive centers—pleasure, happiness, and contentment. We get all of this by habitually hitting the dance floor, swinging to the Latin beat in Zumba class, or mastering our serve on the tennis court. I find this information very encouraging.
Now that we are surrounded by winter, with the shortest day of the year just behind us, let’s get up and out and back on track once the holidays are over. We can start the New Year with the knowledge that lacing up those tennies, or slipping on our dance pumps are the first steps toward revving up our bodies and minds to meet the New Year and the new decade– ready to rumble. Look out world, here we come!
Until next time…Be Vibrant!