When the Excitement Fades

Sustaining motivation throughout a difficult transition is the #1 BIGGEST effort you will have to put forth in your weight loss/health gain transformation.

We’ve all experienced that moment when we’ve had enough of our current condition and state of health. I can pinpoint with amazing accuracy the moment it hit me. I was at my girlfriends’ home, completely despondent in my own life. I was house-sitting while her husband and she traveled to some exciting place for some exciting reason and I felt completely overwhelmed with the condition of ME.


Physically, I was an overweight mess and I blamed every misfortune on that fact alone. Of course, it wasn’t that way at all but that’s what I felt at the time. I was pretty fed up with my own “woe is me” story. Sitting on that couch, at that very moment, I was done with it. Done with feeling sorry for myself, done with feeling poorly about myself and done with not being the person I was capable of being.

I made a quick internet search of trainers in my area, connected with the person who would help motivate me and I took action. I called and made an appointment. I committed! Making the decision and taking action gave me a huge lift and I felt as if the job was already done by taking that step.

Of course, I had to follow through, I had to take action. There was NEVER going to be a better place to begin than in that dark moment. I started training the very minute I got back home. There was no doubt in my mind that I would succeed and follow through but I would be challenged many, many times throughout with setbacks, doubts, and delays.


I’m sharing this so that you can understand, this is not going to be easy. Especially right now, a few weeks into your journey with The Action Plan.

You’re discovering what challenges you, and that’s not always fun. You’re tired and you’re sore. You might have a new injury or exacerbated an old one. Understanding the nutrition is overwhelming and doing it is just damn hard. Life events conspire to hold you back. You’re losing motivation because it’s harder than you imagined.

This is the time to dig in.

This is the time to say ABSOLUTELY NO (I actually say “f**it) to that life and that state of mind. This is the time to remind yourself, “I have the power to do this, I have control and I will not let anything stand in my way.”

This is the time to get tough with yourself, maybe even angry and use that fuel to push forward.


You are strong, capable, smart and successful. You have raised children, you have built a business, you have volunteered, you have supported your friends in difficult times.


It’s time. You started and you can damn well finish.

You CAN learn, you CAN continue, you CAN figure it out, you CAN take the time, you CAN do the one thing that is important to you!

AND. You can do it when things go wrong....

Like when a challenging life situation erupts. When pressure is on and you have no choice but to respond, help and see it through to the end, you can. Because it’s necessary, you do what it takes.

-your child is going through difficult times and you can move mountains to help and support
-a loved one gets sick and needs help to care for themselves and you are there, across the town or across the state, you show up
-a work crisis demands that you spend extra hours and extra attention and you take the time from your emotional bank account and hand it over to the company.

So do it DESPITE things that go wrong.

There are times that I question myself: I am avoiding my own health and fitness needs because I HAVE TO HELP __________.  Or am I using this situation as an excuse because it’s too hard to change me?

My point is only this, we have the energy, determination, and means to step up for others. As women, we have no choice but to put out the fires in life, deal with emotional crises and plow through inevitable “bad” times as well as the good ones. A family vacation, holidays and celebrations are “non-negotiables” and your job right now is to SUSTAIN THE MOTIVATION that you felt on that dark day and keep it alive.

No one can do it for you. No one can teach you how. No one will insist that you continue. No one’s going to force you.

It’s up to you. You can give up and no one will blame you either because you ARE up against a lot.

You ARE in pain, you ARE sad over the loss of a loved one, you DO have a ridiculous load to carry at work, you ARE financially strapped. Yes, you have every reason to put yourself aside and quit.

I’m challenging myself today and I invite you to challenge yourself. Find the ONE reason to put yourself first. Find the reason to continue and to succeed. It will be a heavy load to hold, but you have to. YOU HAVE TO HOLD ON TO THAT REASON.

I’ve been through “dark times” before my “couch moment” and I’ll have more, no doubt. Every time it happens I have to work hard to find the spark again, find the inspiration to move forward.

It takes courage to move forward and you’ve got that!
Renew your motivators often and work to sustain that motivation after the excitement fades.
You deserve this.

Need more inspiration? Read: Believe & Be strong, smart, beautiful




Get Rid of Flabby Thighs Over 40

My Flabby Thighs

I hated my thighs all my life and because I am over 40 (way over) that’s a stinkin’ long time. Too long for someone with a reasonable level of self esteem, or so I would imagine from a psychological perspective.

599019_228521523943423_2082401895_nIt’s so hard to post this comparison but it illustrates my point. Today at 54 y/o I am neither that chunky (2007) nor that lean (2011). I can maintain a good, strong and healthy balance.

Genetics will forever factor in but after making the initial transformation it’s easier to maintain “normal” body fat levels and leaner legs with regular weight lifting sessions, moderate cardio and a balanced diet.




I’ve waged war on my thighs for more years than I care to admit, slamming the poor things with so much negative attention that Abraham Hicks would shake his head. I know I’m not alone, right?  Help me out here.  If it’s not your thighs then it might be flabby arms or a bulging belly but most everyone has their own personal vendetta against some part of their body.

Not you? Wow, that’s so great! But I think a majority of us are looking to improve physically even though we know full hips and shapely thighs are a beautiful thing.

If you’re reading this you’ve probably got a “flabby” reason but I hope you’re not expecting a miracle solution (because there’s not one).

Unfortunately I can’t tell you it’s as simple as applying a lotion, taking a pill or drinking a tea. No, there’s not one exercise, food or product that will spot reduce fat, smooth out cellulite or flatten a flabby tummy. I wish there was……but more, what I do hope for you is that you accept your perfect self for who you are and recognize all the things that make you so. You’re beautiful!

But there’s still some flabbiness and we want to get that under control. It’s just who we are……right?

Here’s the thing, you will have to be even more diligent with these steps because you are Over 40, and you  certainly can! Here we go:

To Get Rid of Flabby Thighs:

1) STRENGTH TRAIN 2-3 times per week and engage your leg muscles with exercises that will make the whole body strong. When you eat properly and begin to lose the fat that covers your body you want to see strong, toned muscles underneath. Work to sculpt your inner and outer thighs, hamstrings, and butt and your legs will look leaner and slimmer. Target the lower body with workouts that are included in The Action Plan.

Squat, lunge and deadlift for strong, shapely legs.

Pop Squat 1

2) BURNING CALORIES is key to reducing your overall body fat. Moderate intensity, heart pumping cardio is necessary. Choose activities that burn the most calories like biking, running, rowing, swimming and jumping rope. These exercises will also tone the legs while you’re doing them. Work up to 40-minutes of moderate intensity cardio sessions (two times a week) and 20-minute High Intensity Interval Training (three times a week) to really notice a difference. The Action Plan includes exercises and schedules for you!

Burn calories to reduce overall body fat. Bike, run, row, swim.


3) DON’T SKIP MEALS and definitely don’t miss breakfast because it’ll rev up your metabolism helping to reduce your overall body fat and reveal your lean legs. Follow The Action Plan nutrition guide and learn to include a balanced combination of protein, fat and fiber-filled complex carbs. The protein will give you energy for your daily training sessions, and it also helps build muscle. The fats will keep you satiated and the carbs will sustain that energy from meal to meal, day to day.

Lean proteins, natural fats, fruits and vegetables for overall fat loss.


4) CHOOSE WATER most often and with few exceptions. You’ll save mega calories avoiding sweetened beverages. Staying hydrated helps with weight loss and the intricate physiological functions that support good health. Drink often throughout the day and especially before meals as a means to control your appetite and for a natural detox effect. Water is just good all the way around!

Infuse water with flavorful fruit & veggies and drink up!


Your Flabby Thighs

No need to get overwhelmed. I’ll leave you with these 4 important steps to getting rid of flabby thighs. There are more strategies including: a variety of activity, macronutrient balance, sleep and recovery, managing acute or chronic conditions and stress, etc. But if you get serious, become consistent and remain persistent with just these 4 biggies you will see an incredible change in your body composition and the appearance of your legs. You will get stronger and slimmer!

ua302995_275735735782009_176229755732608_971238_1752614442_n Work hard, stay consistent, believe in yourself and anything is possible. Just remember you are perfect just as you are and when you strive to become stronger and healthier you’ll only get “perfecter”!




Right On Time!

2015 Happy New Year greeting card



Are you a little late getting to your New Years resolution fitness? Yep, me too! I’ve been active, I’ve been exercising, I’ve been training clients and teaching classes but I’ve not been focused. I can stay in pretty good shape by keeping active and busy but in order to make changes I know that I have to be more diligent and present – I need to be targeted at the goal I want to achieve over the next 12 weeks.


To be fair, it’s pretty common, even for seasoned fitness buffs to get thrown off track over the Christmas and New Year holidays. It takes time to get schedules back in order and eating back on track, so in my books, we’re all right on time! And this is our time!


This New Year I’ve taken the Action Plan to a new location, a local gym in my hometown, and offered the workouts in a group setting. It’s been challenging to address the different levels of physical capability. Actually, what I find difficult is communicating the need for each individual to recognize their own physical capabilities and progress at their own pace. I think it’s important for all of you as well, when working out at home, to be sure to modify your exercises to a level of intensity that challenges you, not hurts you.

Karen Pilote The Action Plan

The Action Plan includes exercises that target muscle strength, endurance and flexibility components. It’s  challenging and that’s what it’s intended to be! You should look at it and think, “can I do this”?


Becoming fit is not usually comfortable. It can be downright painful in some regards: leaving a warm and cozy family evening, finding time in a hectic schedule, maneuvering through a challenging workout routine, experiencing unusual physical responses, facing your insecurities and doubts…..there are so many reasons that committing to a fitness regime and lifestyle change is uncomfortable.

I get that. It’s hard for me too. There are days that I want nothing more than a steaming hot mug of coffee, a good book and a bubble bath…..exercising is not my favorite thing to do, believe it or not. Don’t get me wrong, I love the strength that I feel after a good workout, but comfort and coziness call in the cold winter months. Loudly. But we’ve no choice if we’re going to achieve that weight loss!

Karen Pilote The Action Pla



All that aside, I think the biggest deterrent for most people is a fear that the program will be “too hard”, and they won’t be able to do it. But that is the point. You must do more than you did before, or do something different in order to progress. You’ve got to safely push yourself to the point of failure, just beyond your comfort zone, each and every workout. The Action Plan is set up to challenge your maximum potential. It is intentionally difficult! You, as an individual need to heed your body signals and expect to gradually reach your full potential over time and not in one session.

That means you’ve got to know when to modify, or to take a rest or to limit any workout in order to recover for the next session.


Going forward with (or back to) the Action Plan, I encourage each of you to be aware and recognize your level of tolerance in your training because it will make all the difference in your adherence to the program. No one can define that moment for you. Do what you can each session then follow up with good recovery nutrition, sleep and hydration. You’ll come back fresh each session and be amazed at the progress you make in a very few short weeks!

I’m back on track here, at GFO40 blog and with my training too. Get out the Plan or download a copy today and let’s make this Monday rock with new and realistic intentions. We are stronger than our excuses, right?  Great! Let’s begin New Fitness Year together! (for real this time! lol)

Information and purchase: The Action Plan

Direct Purchase Link: The Action Plan

Karen Pilote The Action Plan  ~karen



Plank Motion and Activation

The Plank Pose is the bomb for strengthening your abdominal muscles and also the muscles of the back, hips, and pelvic floor. You won’t get six-pack abs doing this exercise alone, but you will gain core stability (trunk and spine) and great posture!

How to do it.

Tighten your abdominal muscles to help you hold the position correctly, and hold it as long as you can. When you begin to feel your lower back start to sag from fatigue, take a break, then get back into the proper position and hold the move once again.

PLANKPicMonkey Collage
How to do it better!

Exercise progression is key to getting stronger. Make the plank a DYNAMIC move: when you can hold this pose for 30-60 seconds begin to implement movement modifications to target a variety of  strength, balance, stability and coordination initiatives. The Power Plank demo video is a GFO40 classic. Watch it here and incorporate some new moves to your core training. Make it a challenge!

Core Activation

When it comes down to good physical conditioning the bottom line is “how quickly does your body respond”.  Training for muscle activation is a huge component of physical fitness. We want our bodies to react strongly, quickly and efficiently in our daily activities. A conditioning sequence for the plank pose should include “quick activation” drills:

Activation Plank

Perform a series of Activation Plank repetitions by lying flat on the floor in position to engage the posture. Begin by tensing and engaging all muscles of the body and quickly lift into plank position. Hold the posture for a few seconds and then return to relaxed posture, lying flat on the floor. Immediately repeat this process 6-8 times for one set of Activation Planks. Work up to 3 sets.


 I Just Wanna Zip my Jeans!

Do you want to get rid of the middle age belly bloat?  Do you want to have flat abs of steel? Do you want to simply zip up your friggin jeans?  You can, but it takes a consistent overall effort; diet and exercise. The whole process has to start with some really “not sexy” core strengthening. Overall, full body, integrated strength will enable you to perform the more vigorous training necessary to burn fat efficiently. You need endurance and stamina to hang in there for the long haul. The plank is one of those basic exercises that you might take for granted, a training staple that will support your long-term goals.

heartDid you do the Power Plank series?

Grab a foam roller and then let me know how many rounds you finished!


Subscribe to Get Fit Over 40 and get the Nourish Nutrition Plan: Click the Apple!


Even Wonder Woman Sleeps In

The Wake Up Call



Hey Karen?!

A voice called out in the early morning quiet. A dream? No, more of a nightmare (well not that bad but it did freak me out).

I slept in. Aghhhh, damn!

My fitness studio is located directly below my living area and the morning girls had arrived at 5:30 am as usual, calling out for me. For the first time in my professional life, I slept through it! I slept in.

I share this because I think that we all tend to ignore the signs of overwork and stress until that time something completely unexpected occurs. Headaches? Illness? General fatigue? Distracted concentration? Moodiness?

I never sleep in so that was my “wake up call.”

7tumblr_mtbdzsYwfj1rjpm4uo1_1280What’s Your Sign?

Signs of stress, overwork and/or overtraining are sneaky. You don’t realize what’s happening until it’s too late.

It’s tricky trying to sort out our own body signals, and because we’re not “whiners” we simply keep charging onward!

In this past month:

I’ve enrolled in an intense online business school. I work on lessons 24/7 (whenever I can) because I love to.

When my clientele doubled I was ecstatic. I love what I do!

When the car broke down, no problem! I can handle that!

My toothache needs a Root Canal. OK!  Make the appointment and I’ll get my checkbook!

I can handle it! Time to hit the gym! Right?

Whoa! Hold up Super Hero, take one deep breath.


imageThe point is we are not Wonder Woman. I know, that’s shocking! We can, however, and do, survive. What I realize today is this; we are capable, we are strong, we are mighty, but we are not indestructible.

No one is immune to “doing too much.” Watch for signs of the Wonder Woman Syndrome and slow down, prioritize, engage in life and enjoy the ride.

Have you received a big old sign from the universe lately, suggesting that you should slow down? Tell me about it!