Michelle Obama is candid about the physical changes in her body since hitting menopause.
The former first lady, 58, opened up to People about her experience of menopause in a bid to eliminate the stigma of publicly discussing hormonal changes in women’s bodies. “There’s not a lot of discussion about menopause. I go through it and I know all my friends go through it. And information is scarce,” she explained.
The Chicago-born lawyer revealed that she lives in the White House with her husband, former President Barack Obama, where she and her closest friends attend self-proclaimed fitness “boot camps.”
Now the friends – who teasingly called Obama the “Drillmaster” – lean on each other as they navigate menopause together.
“I find that when we get together and move and laugh, we spend some time talking about what we’re going through. “What is a hot flash?” she said. “We have girlfriends around the table who are OBGYN, who have real information. All this allows us to rise. »
As he got older, Obama said, his fitness workouts changed. “It’s part menopause, part aging,” she explained. “I find I can’t push myself as hard as I used to. It doesn’t sit well with me. It’s when I tear a muscle or pull something and walk away. Recovery time n is not the same.
Obama is now focusing on stretching to stay flexible rather than pushing himself with intense cardio workouts. “You end up finding a balance between staying fit and being kind enough to your body to stay in the game,” she said.
Like many women going through menopause, Obama and some of his boot camp buddies have been gaining weight.
“I never used to weigh myself. I’m not trying to stick to numbers, but when you go through menopause you have this slow downturn that you just don’t realize,” said Obama said “We’re all going through menopause with elastic bands (waistbands) and our gym clothes, and you look up and can’t fit into the outfits you had on last year.”
As for monitoring her weight gain, she said, “I need to be more mindful, not obsessive, but more mindful.”
Obama also told People that overall she feels “blessed” during this time in life. “I think my skin is still healthy. My hair is still in my head. These are the things I have to count my blessings on,” she said.
“I’m still physically active,” she added, “and my goal now, instead of having Michelle Obama’s arms, I just want to keep moving.”
In August 2020, Obama opened up about menopause on the “Michelle Obama Podcast”, where she revealed that she started using hormone replacement therapy while living in the White House.
“I had a few (hot flashes) before I started taking hormones,” Obama explained. “I remember having one on Marine One. I’m dressed, I need to get out, into an event, and literally it was like someone put a furnace in my heart and turned it on full blast and then everything started to melt. I thought ‘Well, that’s crazy. I can not do that.'”
Obama said several women on her husband’s White House staff also suffered from hot flashes and other signs of hormonal changes. So she decided to tell the president what was going on in the lives of the women around him.
“He could see it in somebody, because the sweat was starting to roll out, and he was like, ‘Well, what’s going on?’ And it’s like, no, that’s just how we live,” Obama recalled. “He didn’t break down because he found out there were multiple women on his team going through the menopause. It was just kind of like, ‘Oh, well, turn on the air conditioner.'”