Hot flashes as performance limiter. Help?

I’ve had my ovaries removed and after a breast cancer diagnosis can’t use any supplements that increase estrogen. I am experiencing frequent hot flashes/flushes both on and off the bike. I meditate and have just bought a book on CBT for menopause.
I don’t know how long this will last. It could be months or years.
If I’m putting a hard effort in and I get a hot flush it significantly impacts performance. During a race it significantly impacts overall performance. It pushes HR up and effects RPE. I have read that the impact of a hot flush on HR is equivalent to 30 mins moderate exercise (on to of the actual work load).
I’m going to try out some winter races, to see if it has less of an impact in colder weather.
Is anybody going through the same thing?
Does anyone have any advice?

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I would like to learn more on this. As i am aging, post menopause, I am having more hot flashes and noticing my endurance is failing a bit more. I get more fatigued and weak on the a bike, but after I stop I feel like I haven’t done a thing.

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I suffered with this for some time after going through medically-induced menopause in 2014, as I was on tamoxifen for breast cancer. I was given the drug, Lexapro, usually prescribed for anxiety issues, and it did seem to help. Now I am about 5 years removed from the worst of them, but I do sometimes still get hot flushes while riding (normally inside) and I find that it can be distracting but I just blast my fan and keep my breathing calm. I do stay on top of my hydration especially in summer races - I’ve really been liking the Pedialyte sport for pre-race hydration but it tastes weird.

When I first was going through the night sweats/hot flashes while on the estrogen-blocking meds, I would have a hot flash about every minute of the day and my sleep was so bad I finally resorted to sleeping pills. It was a brutal period of time and it really took a toll on my mental health. It can be very trying but stay the course and stay as fit as you can. Don’t be afraid to ask for help from your doctors too. I’m not sure if this is helpful but just know that I feel for you.

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This is a useful UK based website for information on the menopause including information on prescribed and non-prescribed therapies. I think it was initially put together by a UK based gynaecologist.

https://www.menopausematters.co.uk/

I don’t know if it has information relating specifically to symptoms using exercise.

It is probably worth speaking to your doctor - who that would be probably depends where you are. In the UK that might be your GP or a specialist in sexual health and menopause.

You’re not able to have HRT (which is obviously the most effective treatment for vasomotor symptoms of menopause) but there might be other suitable medication options for you - some people do get benefit from SSRIs or Clonidine.

I apologise if this is repeating stuff you already know.

Hopefully someone will be able to give more advice on managing symptoms with exercise.

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It is so helpful to hear others stories and to be given information and the possibility of improving my situation. Thank you @PattiPepper and @R_H :blush:

Someone on TR has suggested the possibility of radiotherapy effecting thyroid functioning. This is easy to test for with a blood test, so that’s what I will do first, as thyroid dysfunction can worsen menopause symptoms.
Like most of us, I would prefer not to be on medication, but in my current situation I think it may be necessary to function as I would like to in life.
Yesterday, I was mtbing up a steep hill, having a hot flush, heart palpitations and dizziness. Once I get a blood test I will ask my Dr what the options are, get my heart checked out if necessary and take it from there.
The menopause matters site is useful. It may be possible for me to try testosterone gel, as I have had my ovaries removed and apparently that can create a 50% drop in testosterone.

@Ndr8ncgrl I hope you find some of this information useful :sparkling_heart:

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