I got out of my car today in the parking lot of the YMCA, and instantly my shoes began to melt into the pavement. It felt like I was stepping on to the surface of the sun. I live in Phoenix and in July it is brutal. The one positive thing about temperatures over 100 degrees is that I don’t have to ask “Is it hot in here, or is it just me?”
If you are peri-menopausal or in menopause, you have probably asked that question. Living with hot flashes can be annoying to say the least. For me, there are many things that will trigger a hot flash.
· Spicy food – yup, that will bring on a hot flash
· A glass of wine – yup, that will bring on a hot flash
· Exercise of any kind – yup, that will bring on a hot flash
· Chocolate or sweets – that will probably bring on a hot flash
For those of you who have never experienced one, having a hot flash feels like your skin has been set on fire, not the burning pain of a fire, but the intense heat of standing right next to the flame. The heat consumes your whole body and instantly you become a sweat producing factory. They can happen at almost any time – and they usually happen at the most inconvenient times.
Many of us also have frequent hot flashes during the night while we sleep, otherwise known as ‘night sweats’. I have literally woken up to find that my sheets are wet and now that the hot flash is gone, I have to find the covers that I just threw violently off the bed, because I am now freezing.
So, getting back to the parking lot at the YMCA. I know that working out will bring on a hot flash – and hopefully my fellow fitness participants will think its normal that sweat is pouring off of me. I might be the only person who feels grateful for the extreme heat warnings, because between the heat and my jogging on the treadmill, even if I do have a hot flash – I won’t have to ask “Is it hot in here, or is it just me?”