for those who love the outdoors

29 April, 2024


Embracing Change : The Power of Walking Through The Menopause.

A little over a year ago, Jenn became very aware of the number of women reaching out for support and help with little knowledge about what was happening to them. Menopause can have the power to make women feel powerless and lost and that is where this journey started. It is a subject still surrounded in taboo and misinformation but will affect 51% off the population for an average of 15 years of their lives.

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Supporting women through menopause and perimenopause

We were already running a small community walking group at the time, but I decided I could put my knowledge and training of Womens Health and combine this with walking to put together a space just for women, where they could discuss how they were feeling, find support and embrace exercise.

Based in Kent we now run a free monthly Womens Wellness Group which is aimed at women of all stages of life but with particular support for those going through perimenopause and menopause. As the group and interest continues to grow we are searching for ways including additional funding to provide this on a fortnightly basis.

Exercise, movement and lifestyle changes can have a transformative effect and being immersed in the great outdoors with a community supporting you every step of the way can help with both physical and mental health.

Going for a walk is one of the easiest (and cheapest!) steps to supporting your physical, mental and emotional wellbeing and can have an impact on your symptoms straight away.

The scientific benefits of walking during this time are profound and multifaceted, offering a holistic approach to managing symptoms and promoting overall well-being. The list of benefits is seemingly endless ranging from decreasing your chances of diabetes, cardiovascular diseases and joint pain, improving sleep, self esteem, and helping with immunity, weight loss, gut health and brain function to name but a few.

There are so many benefits to focus on its hard to know where to start, but there are two I am particularly passionate about. 

Bone Density

The first is bone density; as oestrogen levels decline during menopause, women become more susceptible to osteoporosis, a condition characterized by weakened bones. By engaging in weight-bearing activities like walking, women can mitigate this risk and preserve bone strength, ensuring a healthier, more vibrant future. Its easy to think of the here and now but protecting ourselves for the future is equally as important.

Mental Wellbeing

The second is mental wellbeing. Walking has been proven to mitigate the feelings of stress, anxiety, and confusion. During perimenopause and menopause there are so many changes to our bodies and brain it can be hard to stay on top of them all leading to feeling out of control and lost within yourself. Combined with often stressful times of life, career, children and family issues, it is no surprise that mental health is often cited as one the main concerns of menopause.

Spending time in nature is linked to both cognitive benefits and improvements in mood, mental health and emotional well-being. Surrounding yourself in the beauty and peacefulness of the outdoors can prove a much needed respite.

At MJ Outdoor Adventures, we aim for people to find more than just a walking group; we are building a community of support and understanding. A safe space for people to share their experiences, fears, and triumphs, knowing they are not alone on this journey. I can provide help with symptoms and nutrition and guide people to resources that may suit them best.

With perimenopause now starting younger than it ever has been before it is crucial we have open conversations and spaces for women to be able to feel strong, empowered, heard and validated.

Here are some tips for managing perimenopause and menopausal symptoms while staying active:

  1. Stay Hydrated: Drink plenty of water before, during, and after your walks to minimize the risk of hot flashes.
  2. Dress in Layers: Wear breathable, moisture-wicking fabrics to stay comfortable during walks, and dress in layers to adjust to changing temperatures.
  3. Pace Yourself: Listen to your body and pace yourself during walks, taking breaks as needed to rest and recharge.
  4. Practice Mindfulness: Use your time outdoors to practice mindfulness and meditation, focusing on the present moment and embracing the beauty of nature.
  5. Allow Time: Set time aside for yourself as an when you can to ensure it doesn’t feel like a rushed chore. This is your time to focus on YOU.
  6. Seek Support: Don't hesitate to reach out to friends, family, or walking groups for guidance and encouragement.

There is no getting away from menopause but we can change how we approach and discuss it. For some it can be a new beginning, filled with opportunities for growth, discovery, and empowerment.

By embracing activities such as walking, connecting with nature and each other, we can thrive through this chapter in our lives. So let's come together and help each other thrive!

If you are based in Kent, you should come along, our Womens Wellness Walks are free and I guarantee you will feel right at home within moments of arriving. We would love to meet you!

Instagram: @mj.outdoor.adventures

Facebook: MJ Outdoor Adventures


MJ Outdoor Adventures

We started MJ Outdoor Adventures in 2022 and we venture around the Kent and beyond exploring new trails, finding hidden gems, learning history, looking for local wildlife and meeting new people each weekend. We are big advocates for diversity in the outdoors. All are very much welcome and encouraged on our walks. We look forward to meeting you soon.

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