The Menopausal Runner

Hazel Burleigh

One day I was full of energy, mild mannered (although my partner may not agree with that one), could walk into a room and remember what I went in for, and slept through the night. The next I was having hot flushes, experiencing anxiety, become an insomniac and was calling my kids by the wrong names! Well, it wasn’t quite that quick, but it felt that way.

What had happened I hear you ask? I will tell you – the menopause.

I am not sure I believed in the menopause before it became my new challenge. I knew about hot flushes, but how hard could that be to deal with?  And I would gain weight. Well, I would just eat less and exercise more. I was less aware of the emotional impact:

  • Anxiety
  • Mood swings
  • Forgetfulness
  • Feeling you can’t cope
  • Depression

Any one of these can impact, and yet they are rarely talked about. I have always faced challenges head on and decided I would face this one by running. I am not a fast runner, or a stylish runner, but I am quite determined.

Running gives me time in my head, helps me keep fit, and best of all makes me feel like I’m achieving something.

Since becoming menopausal I have run 10k series, a half marathon for the first time, and just started to do some trail running. Everyone’s menopausal journey will be different and there’s no right or wrong thing to do but I hope this has raised some awareness and will encourage people to run for positive wellbeing.

Hazel Burleigh, menopause awareness- raiser


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