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Holly Dirty Girl Mud Run 1Last year, I wrote a blog post about the Dirty Girl 5K Mud Run. At the time, and not having actually run the event, I was just hoping to inspire our readers to stay active and have a little fun. Little did I know that my next step would be signing up and spending an action-packed Saturday morning running, walking, and laughing my way through a muddy obstacle course.

And you know what? I haven’t had that much fun in years. But somewhere between the Utopian Tubes and Dirty Dancing, I learned a few life lessons that I wasn’t expecting.

  1. It’s easy to get stuck in a comfort zone. Crawling through a sloppy mud pit wasn’t near the top of my menopause bucket list, but we tend to miss out on some really great opportunities because we’re not comfortable with them. Sometimes, they turn out to be incredible experiences. And this was one.
  2. It’s okay to play, be silly and laugh really hard. Many of us get so consumed by our roles as wives, moms or co-workers that we forget how to loosen up. Make that time to be a kid again.
  3. Age doesn’t matter. Wasn’t sure if I’d be able to hold my own against ladies half my age, but realized that it’s not a competition. Being at Dirty Girl helped me understand that age is not an excuse.
  4. Fear is normal, but don’t let that stop you. Does the idea of crawling through a narrow tube make you a little claustrophobic? Me, too. But life is filled with scary moments and we have to be up to the challenge. So bring it!
  5. One foot goes in front of the other. When you’re staring at what seems like a mile-high rope ladder and you have no other way around it, the solution gets clearer. Just take that first step.
  6. It’s important to support other women. Can you climb that eight-foot wall by yourself? Maybe so, sometimes this can also be an opportunity to get a little help and pay it forward.
  7. We can find inspiration all around us. I’m always surprised by the courage, perseverance, and strength that women have. When you hear their stories about fighting cancer, coping with the loss of family and friends or just trying really hard to figure life out, you realize the beauty of our spirit.
  8. Obstacles are meant to be overcome. Literally and figuratively, because they really get in the way of living life to it’s fullest.
  9. We have to believe in ourselves. The best part of the Dirty Girl is that—when you finish the run—you may realize that you’ve accomplished something you weren’t sure you could. You just need to keep thinking, “I’m strong, I can do this and there are thousands of women cheering me on.
  10. And last, but not least, embrace the dirty. Don’t tip toe through life without getting a little mud on your face. It’s at those times when we learn the most about ourselves.

At the end of it all, and as muddy as we were in the car ride home, my friends and I couldn’t stop talking about how much fun we had. Dirty Girl was a once-in-a-lifetime experience and I was glad to be part of an organization committed to supporting breast and ovarian cancer prevention and awareness. Their focus of encouraging and empowering women could be felt among the crowd of the strong, brave and supportive women I met that day. And hope to see again next year.

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Middle Aged Woman Being Examined by DoctorMenopause NOW is a monthly roundup of menopause resources, headlines, and stories. By scouring the internet and leveraging our connections with women’s health experts, we’ll offer links and give you access to the information that’s more important to you.

In our August edition, we explore just how menopause can impact our attitude, our health, and even—believe it or not—the economy.

How Much is Menopause Costing Our Economy?

A recent study published online by The North American Menopause Society (NAMS) showed that women who let hot flashes go untreated could be costing the US economy hundreds of millions of dollars. The logic, according to Dr. Philip Sarrel, a co-author of the study, is that those women tend to have a far higher number of doctors visits. And many take more time off or drop out of the workforce altogether.

Lisa Lampanelli Finds the Positive in Menopause

Like her or not, comedienne Lisa Lampanelli has never held back on sharing her thoughts or very candid opinions. In a recent interview with HuffPost Live, Lampanelli offers a positive spin on her lack of sex drive and pokes a little fun of herself along the way. “I’m over 50,” she says. “I’m never going to win any beauty contests. I need more hormone therapy than Chaz Bono.”

Conditioning Yourself to Be Happy (In Minutes a Day)

It’s hard to keep a positive attitude when hormones, mood swings and anxiety are making you miserable. What if we could change that without investing a lot of time? According to neuropsychologist Rick Hanson, PhD, it may take a little practice, but we can “hardwire” our brains to be happy in just three minutes a day.

Are You Committing the Seven Sins of Menopause?

Menopause changes women. We find ourselves doing and saying things that our pre-menopause selves wouldn’t even consider. Marcia Kester Doyle of Menopausal Mother shares her lighthearted take on the seven deadly sins, including feelings of envy, lust and greed.

Take Time for Healthy Bones

You’ve probably gone to the doctor recently for a yearly exam, mammogram, pap smear or blood test. But what about a bone density screening? As we begin to transition through menopause, osteoporosis becomes a real concern for some women. There are many ways your doctor can help you slow the progression of bone loss and keep you feeling strong and vibrant.

Want to share your thoughts on these or other stories? Join the conversation at the menopause forum. Or, if you know of a newsworthy resource that might bring value to our members and readers, feel free to send us an email.

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It’s Time to Talk About Sex After Menopause: An Interview with Missy Lavender

August 22, 2014

We recently had an opportunity to chat with Missy Lavender, founder of the Chicago-based nonprofit, Women’s Health Foundation (WHF) and pioneer in championing pelvic health and wellness for women of all ages. Missy founded WHF in 2004 and is its strongest advocate. Prior to that, she was an executive in the fields of investment management, […]

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July Menopause NOW: Resources and Headlines You Don’t Want to Miss

July 31, 2014

Menopause NOW is a monthly roundup of menopause resources, headlines, and stories. By scouring the internet and leveraging our connections with women’s health experts, we’ll offer links and give you access to the information that’s more important to you. This month, we share stories from a few bloggers, and a Go-Go, about how they’re handling […]

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Ever Had a Menopause Emergency?

July 12, 2014

There’s going to come a point in every woman’s life when the topic of menopause will come up in conversation. You might be sitting in your doctor’s office, chatting with friends at lunch or talking to yourself while you have your first hot flash. In any case, you’re going to have to start making some […]

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June Menopause NOW: Resources and Headlines You Don’t Want to Miss

June 30, 2014

Menopause NOW is a monthly roundup of menopause resources, headlines, and stories. By scouring the internet and leveraging our connections with women’s health experts, we’ll offer links and give you access to the information that’s more important to you. As we dive into the summer months, we’ll take a closer look at anxiety, migraines and […]

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