“What does my life look like at 59?” pondered Andrea in the MyMT™ Coaching Community.
I had no idea that Andrea was in my session at the Australian Women’s Health and Fitness Conference, but I must have struck a chord with her, because a few months later, she arrived in my online MyMT™ Circuit Breaker programme [which is the programme for thinner/ leaner women like Andrea]. I’m so pleased that she came on board because, when you are at a turning point in your life and reflecting on all that has gone on as you begin your new journey into the next phase of your life, then you need to get your sore joints, hot flushes, anxiety and sleep sorted.
I’m so grateful that Andrea has shared her powerful story, not only with the MyMT™ private coaching community, but now, with all of you too. Her story strikes so many chords with all of us at this stage of life I’m sure.
“It wasn’t until I started to struggle with my own late menopause at 57 years that I became fascinated with Wendy’s programme,” mentioned Andrea. “I’m a boots-and-all kind of person and I wanted to understand what was happening to me in menopause as well as for my personal training and pilates clients.
When your children are young and you are in the craziness of juggling everything, you kinda forget there will be a time your age will begin to catch up with you, your children will leave home and follow their own dreams and you will be left questioning what your life is about.
For me personally, as a single Mum for most of my 2 sons childhood, I never imagined my life without being ‘needed’ in the practical ways, making meals, driving them to sporting practice and events, taking them to the doctor etc but these times do finish (if you are fortunate to have healthy independent kids). Of course you are always a Mum emotionally, but as many women discover as I had to as well, your role will change dramatically.
APT is my business of 12 years, but also the sum and culmination of my life-learnings. My foundation as an ex-ballet dancer through to becoming a Personal Trainer, Pilates Instructor and Functional Trainer gives me the experience that I love and has led me towards creating my business and my newest passion, ‘bodyART Training’.
From a shy little girl who would not say boo to anyone, but would happily dance around the lounge room for anyone to watch through to a young determined ballet student who was constantly told her body was wrong and she would never be a professional ballet dancer, I have always pushed myself to strive for my dreams. At 17 years young, I was found by an incredible Mentor/ Teacher, who drew me into ‘knowing’ deep in my gut, that I must go to London to train with him. As such, I proved to the ‘naysayers, my passion and deeply embedded spirit, that I simply HAD to dance. I then became the youngest of a 70-strong top world-class classical ballet company based there. I lived my dream, performing in all of the major classics and sharing the stage with none other than Rudolph Nureyev.
A life before marriage & children feels almost like you were once somebody else . . . and so mine was. My career at such a young age, led into other theatrical areas with many forks in the road, performing in a musical touring Australia, marrying an opera singer & becoming a highly sought after Opera & Theatre Stage Manager & Assistant Director for many, many years.
My second marriage led me to finally ‘settle down’ and I had 2 beautiful sons. But then I became a single-mum with my whole immediate family tragically gone. Like all single-mums I boxed on and never gave menopause or my nagging joint pain and symptoms a thought. Until I heard Wendy speak at the conference.
I suppose this current stage I’m at now, was just not able to fit into my future thinking. Yet, I’m thankful I had the sense to pursue a passion to create my own independent work to survive when I returned to study and started my business in 2007. What I DO know is that being physically & mentally mobile, strong & flexible is essential to a quality life for me as I get older. I had no idea that menopause would leave me exhausted and desperate for sleep!
I didn’t realise that this stage of life requires a different approach to how I’ve been living my life for years. Wendy really helped me to understand that old formulas and hard-core, push-yourself, non-stop are NOT going to cut it any more. As well, if you were at an elite level of a sport or a dancer like me, you WILL start to pay the price with what you relentlessly pushed your body into & through. As I discovered, we all acquire more and more inflammation as we age, and yes, our past matters, as does not sleeping!
I was so confused as my own mobility was in question over the past 2-3 years. I had also noticed how cranky I was becoming because of it. Waking up stiff with painful parts of me like arthritis in my feet, an ankle that would not move, painful hip joints etc that were in need of slow, nurturing daily movement.
Over the past couple of years, I also began to sow the seeds for my new business, ‘Mobility Matters’. This developed from my learnings as a Mentor/ Teacher in London as well as my years in my existing business called APT incorporating – Personalised Training/ Pilates/ Functional Training as well as, bodyART (since 2015 and I’m now an Australian Master Trainer). Mobility Matters is all about bringing positive yet simple self-learning tools to older adults and those who have lost their confidence and joy to move. I knew I had to make a difference to their lives through my mobility magic! It was born out of my own essential desire to feel positive, youthful & happy when I walk out my door to train my clients or teach a class.
Through Wendy’s programme, it became even clearer that a more mindful, self-learning, patient journey must begin, especially as you progress through menopause. As Wendy often says,“You must re-discover ‘your’ self again.”That’s how I used her programme – not only to help myself, but to give me the necessary information to provide the next stage of ‘me’.
Life at 59 is looking pretty good now. I’m so excited now to see what the next few years will bring!
I know from many of my clients that so many women are confused as to why what they did when they were younger no longer works for them now that they are in menopause. I felt like this too. But in her 12 week programme, Wendy addressed all of this methodically giving me practical ways to deal with it NOW. A positive mindset is essential but aligning mind, body & spirit is even more so, for what I believe is the secret to optimal health, happiness and life quality.
Putting a more positive slant on menopause and also being part of the Wendy’s private MyMT™ Coaching Community has been a great help to me as well. Talking about the normality of menopause and the different ways it affects women is a conversation that needs to be open and no longer tucked away. Wendy is a world leader for this – Bravo Wendy!
Andrea Gaze, Australia