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So honored to be featured in VoyagePhoenix magazine!

We address the hot topics for women 40+ regarding fitness & and how it impacts our mental health & happiness.

VoyagePhoenix Magazine Feature:

After a near-death cycling accident, resulting in a broken neck and years of rehabilitation, learn how Coach Shannon’s unique perspective on health, fitness, and life has helped others gain the courage and confidence to achieve all goals.

Meet Shannon Peterson, master personal trainer for over 27 years, 3X Ironman World Championship triathlete, and owner of two thriving fitness businesses.

ACHIEVE Multisport Coaching & Personal Training. Shannon has trained CEOs to stay-at-home moms of six, to achieve their fitness goals ranging from Ironman triathlons to passing the police academy physical fitness tests, to hiking across Camino de Santiago.

Live Your Truth Women. Fitness Coaching for women 40+ focusing on all factors impacting health – physical strength, endurance, hormonal health, nutrition, and emotional well-being.

Shannon says, “The key to your success, no matter what the goal, is to understand the interconnectedness between the body and mind. To strengthen your physical body, you must also strengthen your mindset.”

Can you talk to us a bit about the challenges and lessons you’ve learned along the way? Looking back would you say it’s been easy or smooth in retrospect?

In 2014, I was training for an Ironman triathlon, riding my bike on the iconic Queen K on the Big Island of Hawaii.

At exactly 5 hours and 2 minutes into the ride, I had a head-on collision with a pick-up truck. Three ambulance rides later, one of which included being airlifted to the island of Oahu, I was diagnosed with a broken neck and unsure if I would ever be able to swim, bike, and run again.

It took years to regain my strength and endurance; and honestly, I still have limitations.

But, here’s the key the real growth went far beyond my physical strength, exercise strengthened my mindset. You see, in the deepest darkest moments of self-doubt, I asked myself this question, “Am I living my truth?”.

Nope. Like so many women, I was “doing” a lot. Crushing it as an athlete, working 2 jobs, mothering 2 fur babies, volunteering… you know, being Super Woman. But the truth? I was also choosing to stay married to an abusive alcoholic who was crushing my health & well-being.

My story details might differ from yours, but how many times have you sacrificed your own happiness out of fear of change, fear of failure, or fear of fear? The good news is… fear is good. It’s why I created “Live Your Truth Women”.

LIFE LESSON: if you want to be happy, you’ve got to stick your neck out. Is it scary? Heck yeah! Is it worth it? HELL YES!

That is why my mission is to help others prioritize fitness. It truly is the gateway to courage, self-confidence, and lasting happiness. I teach clients to power up their mindsets by achieving physical goals.

My clients learn that the body follows the mind. When you believe it’s possible, even if it seems super scary, you are truly limitless. It’s your choice.

We’ve been impressed with Live Your Truth Women Fitness Coaching, but for folks who might not be as familiar, what can you share with them about what you do and what sets you apart from others?

Why is the name of my fitness coaching business Live Your Truth Women? ⁠Let me start by saying… I love working with male clients. I’ve done it my entire life and still train men under my ACHIEVE Multisport & Personal Training business umbrella. However, I created Live Your Truth Women because…

For far too long, women have bought into the myth that fitness is about all looking better. That the numbers on a scale, tape measure, or inside our jeans – define our self-worth. ⁠

But let me tell you this, both from personal experience as an almost 50 years alive woman who’s trained thousands of women from competitive athletes to women who had never lifted a dumbbell, the ONLY way to be fit and stay fit forever is to focus on the journey, not the outcome. ⁠

Here’s the secret – fitness is about FEELING better, not just looking better. It’s attaining life-long health by moving your body daily, nourishing it with healthy foods, and realizing you can attain any and all goals when you build a strong mindset.

In this second half of life the biggest goal is to be happy, right? Fitness is the key. Being fit means more energy & confidence to do what you love & to live your truth. It’s a mind-body connection. And that is what sets my Live Your Truth Women coaching apart from the noise. I won’t promise you ⁠drop 2 pants sizes in 2 weeks or that you’ll look 10 years younger. But I will promise you that you’ll FEEL 10 years younger and be happier than you’ve ever been in whatever size of jeans you’re wearing. When you learn to unleash the power of your mind, you are limitless! ⁠ Remember this – you don’t have to be confident right now. You just have to want it badly enough that you’re willing to take small consistent steps toward your goal. And that is so much easier when you have a support system.

Live Your Truth Women fitness coaching was created to inspire, teach, and support women to achieve fitness goals as the gateway to achieving a happier, healthier, life in every way.

If you’re looking for help with your health and fitness goals, I offer online and in-person personal training, small group training, exercise classes, multisport athletic coaching, women’s Hike-Yoga Retreats, and more. Go to and follow Live Your Truth Women on Instagram or Facebook.

Where do you see things going in the next 5-10 years?

Fitness is getting more inclusive – people of all abilities, shapes, ages, and experience levels can participate in activities that improve heart health, strength, flexibility, and balance.

A huge focus is on women over the age of 40 making big fitness gains by lifting heavier weights. Gone are the days of 3lb weights with hundreds of repetitions so we don’t “bulk up”. Instead, we are educating women on the benefits of high-weight/low-rep training: injury prevention, building bone mass, regulating hormones, reducing menopausal symptoms, improving sleep quality, feeling more energetic, and mood regulation.

To be clear, this is much different than the old “no pain, no gain” mentality. That often meant over-training to the point of burnout or injury. Spending hours slogging away at the gym in order to see gains. Instead, fitness is about training smarter to maximize our results and still have a life outside the gym.

Similarly, cardio recommendations have changed to more frequent “bit size” segments of 10-20 min/day of elevated heart rate sessions several times a day. It’s a much more realistic way to fit in fitness.

My top 3 recommendations to maintain a consistent, forever-fit lifestyle:

1. Mix it up! Don’t do the same exact routine every week. Your body adapts quickly to physical demands. My rule of thumb is to do at least 3 different cardio activities per week (so yes, you can run 3x/per week but you still need to cycle or swim or kickbox, too) and to vary your strength training exercises each session.

2. Get a partner! We are 80% more likely to achieve a goal when we have an accountability partner. Get a friend, family member, neighbor, or coworker to meet you for workouts. Hire a coach so you maximize your time and prevent injury. Sign up for a group challenge that requires check-ins.

3. Set a goal that you cannot accomplish tomorrow. Meaning setting a HARD goal. One that requires you to train for several weeks or several months. The daily motivation will be much higher and when you reach the goal… there’s NO BETTER FEELING.

Contact Info:

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It’s easy to blame age for all your metabolism woes.

TRUTH - your lifestyle choices impact your declining metabolism more than your trips around the sun.

And yes, I’m 50, I’m not denying we have hormonal changes that contribute to our weight maintenance challenges, but…

You make choices every day that boost your caloric expenditure or diminish it.

Choose wisely girlfriend.

My Top 3 Pro Tips:

👉 Get an accountability partner to workout with - friend, spouse, coach

👉 Shoot for 15+ grams of protein at every meal (1 egg = 6g, 1/2 chicken breast = 21-25g, 1 cup Greek yogurt = 13g)

👉 Limit alcohol and to 2-3 drinks per week (normal portion size 🍷🍺)

This is a repost from the Numarra website.

Shannon Paterson is a lifetime fitness coach, 25-year personal trainer, and a 3x Ironman World Championship Triathlete, as well as a Mindset Mastery trainer. Her perspective on the importance and purpose of exercise has evolved over time, particularly after a near-death cycling accident that changed her perspective on life. This gave her the courage to leave a toxic marriage and learn that her worth was not determined by the opinions of other people. Through her mentorship of other women, she hopes to show others how exercise will prolong not only the length, but also the quality of their lives.

Shannon emphasizes the importance of the interconnectedness between the mind, body, and spirit. “When we strengthen our mindset and our physical body together, we are unstoppable, but we can’t do one without the other,” she says.

Why exercise?

For her, exercise is a way to strengthen this connection by driving confidence in all aspects of life. She says that at this point in life, the goal of exercising is not to become thinner, but rather about having a more positive self-image, and the ripple effects that are enabled by this power.

There are many manners in which exercise achieves this goal, from boosting our energy and endorphin levels to reducing our risk of suffering from depression. In this manner, exercise can be incredibly empowering and offer women agency over their own emotional health. Shannon also talked at length about the expectations placed on women by society to wear multiple hats all at once, achieve everything they possibly could, and “do it all”, only to realize the negative effects of this mindset during their middle age. In order to incorporate exercise into a busy schedule, she recommends doing simple moderate-intensity activities, such as riding a bike, going on a walk, and lifting weights during your own time.

She emphasizes the importance of participating in the physical activities that truly bring you joy, as opposed to doing those that seem the most popular or would help you lose the most weight. This would enable women to reduce their stress levels, when they are especially vulnerable to them. Participating in physical activity that brings joy also ensures longevity through the formation of lifelong habits.

Shannon teaches compound exercises that target multiple areas of the body, which would enable them to get the most out of a relatively short period of time while exercising. She recommends hiring a female personal trainer who understands the importance of certain exercises to meet particular healthcare needs during the menopausal and premenopausal age and foster a sense of belonging. One way to connect with such personal trainers is through the Internet and social media.

Shannon admits that exercise does not feel good all the time. However, she says that women are equipped to handle it, as they manage challenges in all aspects of their lives on a regular basis, and the experience of discomfort leads to greater strength in the future. For this reason, pain and discomfort are not entirely negative.


Another important aspect of physical health during menopause is nutrition. While Shannon is not particular about any popular or complex diets, she does emphasize the importance of balancing different food groups in a healthy manner. One very important food group Shannon mentions is protein, which may take effort to prepare ahead of time. Protein can help avoid unpleasant menopause-induced symptoms such as lower energy levels and brain fog. She also notes that studies on popular health trends such as intermittent fasting have been primarily conducted on men. Maintaining a healthy diet also means avoiding alcohol and foods that are extremely unhealthy, even if it means not buying them in the first place. Another way to avoid weight gain is to process stress. This can be done by attending therapy, spending time with friends, and incorporating laughter and joy into our daily schedules. Shannon also emphasizes the importance of raising awareness of the manners in which women produce stress in their lives, particularly through self-criticism. For this reason, Shannon does not allow any of her clients to say negative things about themselves during their coaching sessions together. She will force her clients to stop and re-word their statements if they do so in order to help generate awareness and put a stop to negative habits.

Exercise and menopause

Weight gain is a major issue associated with menopause. There are many factors that contribute to weight gain during this phase, including stress, sleep deprivation, and sedentary lifestyles. To avoid weight gain, Shannon emphasizes the importance of embracing moderate intensity and varying your exercise in order to challenge your body. This is because changes in your body should be accompanied by changes in our exercise habits.

Learn more

Shannon’s warmth and effort in building a positive and welcoming atmosphere in her practice as a personal fitness trainer is evident, as she aims to help women build better lifestyle habits and lead better lives while overcoming challenging transitions such as menopause. To learn more about her, follow or message her on Instagram and Facebook.

Check out her full video on YouTube and make sure to follow Numarra on Facebook and Instagram!

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