All posts filed under: Active Women

Active Women – meet Alison Wren

For many people, the push to exercise comes from a health scare, whether it’s high blood pressure or like today’s guest, breast cancer. The desire to do as much as you can to improve your health can really spur you into action. Alison Wren is the perfect example of even when you can only swim ‘face out of the water’ breaststroke and don’t own a bike, you can begin training for a triathlon! Bringing exercise her life has even led to a redirection in Alison’s career. Read on and be inspired. Tell us a bit about yourself Alison? I’m 58 and live in Manchester with my husband and cat. For most of my adult life I’ve been an enthusiastic watcher of sport but not a participant. I’ve been self-employed since 2002, most recently as a digital marketing consultant specialising in the wedding industry. Running a business can be all consuming and exercise was not usually a priority until I took up triathlon four years ago. I’m now completely hooked! I’m currently studying to become a …

Active Women – meet Gemma Hicks

Consistent, healthy choices, every day over time can make a huge difference to your health. In this Active Women Interview, I talk to Gemma Hicks. She discovered that aside from losing weight, becoming active and fit has so many other benefits and it’s opened up a whole new world for her Tell us a bit about yourself Gemma… I have always been overweight. I was a chubby child. I hated any form of exercise and my parents, who are both quite sedentary, were always happy to offer a note to excuse me from PE. I was treated with sweets and chocolate if I behaved. My grandparents, who looked after me while my parents worked, fed me on large portions of wholesome food. If I ate it all, it was always followed by a good Yorkshire-style pudding like rice pudding or sponge and custard. I became an obese teenager. I was relatively academic but never sporting. We never went for family walks or did any sort of sporting activities at the weekend. I continued the cycle …

Tips for Peri-menopausal Anxiety

My last blog talked about how common anxiety is around the menopause and how women often don’t realise that hormonal changes can be the underlying cause for their anxious symptoms (you can read it here). Let’s move on to what we can do to relieve anxiety. What can you do when you’re feeling anxious? How can you calm your mind and stop anxiety overwhelming you? Here are my top tips for easing anxiety in the peri-menopause: Understand it. Read about it, listen to podcasts, talk to other women. The more you understand what’s going on in your body, the more informed you feel. This can really help you feel in control. Tackle it positively. Anxiety is a horrible feeling but there are things you can do to ease it. Approaching it with a positive mind set and a problem solving head, will help you through. Reduce anxiety-inducing drinks and food. Caffeine is known to produce the same jitteriness and increased heart rate as anxiety. Reducing or cutting out caffeine can help hugely if you’re someone …

Anxiety in the Peri-menopause

Anxiety is very common. In 2013 there were more than 8 million cases of anxiety in the UK and with the Covid-19 pandemic, there are certainly many more this year. Feeling anxious is really horrible and can lead to a lot of self doubt. Sometimes there is a trigger but more often than not, anxiety seems to come out of the blue. Many women find they feel anxious at certain times of their menstrual cycle and many women experience anxiety symptoms in the lead up to the menopause. So what is the link between hormones and anxiety and why is it that anxiety can be the first sign of the menopause? Let’s first remember that anxiety can be a good thing. A state of hyper alertness was designed to help us when we meet an enemy, to either stay and fight or to flee the scene (the fight or flight response). That can certainly help us to perform well when it matters, perhaps in an exam, interview or a tricky conversation. It’s only when that …

Quick Question – How do I know if I’m peri-menopausal?

This time last year BBC Breakfast ran their brilliant menopause coverage which increased awareness, educated and informed the public on this important topic. I made a contribution and visited the sofa to talk to Louise Minchin about exercise and the menopause and I wrote a blog to enlarge on the subject too. It definitely started conversations but one year on are we still talking about it? Do we feel more knowledgeable? It’s important that the conversation continues. Women still have many questions and concerns. How do I know if I’m peri-menopausal? How can you tell if you’re in the menopause? These are questions I hear all the time so let me answer them in my #quickquestion series. Terminology First up, a quick reminder of what the terms mean. You reach the menopause when you haven’t had a period for 12 months, the average age for this to happen, in the UK, is age 51. When you are heading towards the menopause but not there yet it’s called the peri-menopause (peri means around or surrounding) and …

Active Women Interview – meet Katie Holmes

More and more women over fifty are increasing their fitness levels and discovering just how much they can do. From a health perspective, it’s a wonderful time of life to be maxing out on physical activity, reaping the benefits and slowing the ageing process. I for one am really inspired by these women sharing their stories on social media and it makes me feel enthused and positive about the years ahead (I’m 46). Katie Holmes is one of these women, it hasn’t been an easy journey for her and she’s now taken it one step further by collecting stories of runners over fifty for her blog. I’ll let her tell you more in the interview!

Active Women Interview – meet Nat Scroggie

I’ve been tweeting for six years, enjoying the banter with others and then suddenly, bam, up pops Nat aka ThisVetRuns. From her first tweet in April 2018  she had me captivated with her honesty, quality blog writing and I admit, the occasional cute photo of her dog and random kittens from her work! It’s been wonderful to follow her return to running after a miscarriage and see her progress in her goals. I love her attitude and I was really happy that she agreed to take part in this Active Women Interview Series.

Active Women Interview – meet Kirsten Huesch

After connecting on social media, I met up with Kirsten at the Women In Sport – Empower 18 conference in London in October. Chatting away to her over lunch (whilst standing and balancing plates and drinks!) we shared so many views about making exercise fun, inclusive and part of everyday life, particularly in terms of healthy ageing. We’re both on a mission to help people live long, healthy and active lives. I was really interested to hear about the great courses she leads which include nutrition as well as fitness and I was delighted she agreed to take part in this active women interview series.