Author Archives: Catherine Gordon

My Perfect Weight Loss Meal Plan

My Perfect Meal Plan for Weight Loss is Sugar Freedom: no sugar, no grains, no vegetable oils.

I used to wish that I could add sugar, grains, and high sugar fruits like bananas, but every time I tried re-introduction my cravings came roaring back, and away I would go with over eating.

The truth is that the way I eat now is very similar to the way I used to eat, and the way the actors, singers, and dancers around me ate, when I was working in show business.

From film sets, to commercial shoots, to the officer’s dinner on the cruise ship I worked on, most of us ate the same way.  My fellow dancers and performers chose protein, vegetables, some fat, and a bit of fruit.  Bread, pasta, and potatoes were out, and rice was only eaten occasionally.

I have been studying nutrition for almost ten years now, and I have come to a clearer understanding of why the elimination of grains and sugars is so important for working dancers.  First, wheat and other grains can cause inflammation in susceptible individuals.  You can imagine why this would be troubling for a dancer: aching joints don’t make for beautiful movement. When the body metabolizes sugar it produces advanced glycation end products or A.G.E.s., which have been shown to accelerate aging.  Worst of all for me, sugar and grains cause my insulin levels to shoot up causing fatigue and irresistible cravings.

My solution, which has allowed me to permanently overcome obesity, is to simply leave those foods out permanently that get in the way of my work.  I would rater act, sing, and dance than eat bread and sugar.

After years of trial and error, I have discovered the macro-nutrient amounts that reliably keep me lean, and that can promote fat loss when needed.  Her is a screen shot of my weight loss meal plan from Fitday.com.  Note that as a Certified Fitness Nutrition Specialist, it is beyond my scope of practice to tell you what to eat. However, I do have the freedom to tell you what I eat, and that is shown here.  The feeling of energy, satisfaction, and peace I get from this meal plan, is worth letting go of any of the foods I used to crave.

Weight Loss Meal Plan

My Perfect Weight Loss Meal Plan.

The Little Black Dress Challenge Is On.

Begins January 24th

Begins January 24th

Do you know what keeps me up at night as a personal trainer and fitness nutrition specialist?  This question: is it wrong to focus on appearance more than health?

The ideal figure of the past 40 years has become so thin that fitness professionals need to be cautious about chasing fashion at the expense of health, strength, and vitality.  It’s hard to live a fulfilling life when you’re walking around hungry all the time!

Still, I am so proud of the results my readers and clients have achieved during our challenges.  I asked Cherie, who did our first LBD challenge and lost 10 pounds and 13 inches in six weeks, what I should call the challenge going forward.  She said that “Little Black Dress,” was the right name because it described what she wanted: to look wonderful when dressing up.  She’s right, LBD isn’t about getting super skinny, it’s about looking your best and having confidence, not just on special occasions, but every day.

Plus, the great thing about this challenge is that you can get that tight dress, or pair of pants for the guys, out of the back of the closet, and use it as your gauge for success.  That way it doesn’t need to be all about the scale.

Now here is the best part: anyone who has purchased the Sugar Freedom program is invited to take the challenge as a free bonus!  That’s right: I will send you the new LBD meal plans, and add you to the LBD Challenge group on Facebook if you simply e-mail me with the phrase: LBD Challenge in the subject line.

All I ask is that you drop me a line describing your experience with the program at the end of the challenge.  Join me for accountability, recipes, meal plans, and the training you need to get results at home or the gym.  Training will be posted in the private Facebook group.  If you want a plan designed just for you, e-mail me: catherine@sugarfreedom.com, and I will create a plan that takes into account your equipment, skill level, and the number of days per week you have to train, for just $50.

Women and men just like you have literally lost thousands of pounds and inches with my programs, and the LBD Challenge is one of the most popular I have ever presented.  Join us to drop a size by Valentine’s Day, and 2 sizes by the end of the six week challenge.  If you have the Sugar Freedom program, it’s free!

Create Your Freedom Food Plan In Three Steps

Simple food for an abundant life.

Simple food for an abundant life.

The goal of Sugar Freedom is to give you the knowledge you need to create a lifetime eating system.

You must learn to answer this question, “What are the foods that keep me healthy and happy?”

One thing I have learned is that the answer to this question is as unique as you are.  Sugar Freedom is intended to release you from cravings so that you can rediscover your natural appetite, and learn to choose food rationally.  When we are hungry and stressed we rarely eat in a way that is consistent with our long term goals, unless we have a plan in place to make sure that we choose wisely.

If I could only give you one piece of advice on eating for fat release it would be this:

Always have some Freedom Foods available and ready to eat.

For me, that means salad greens are washed and chopped, and hard boiled eggs are available.  If I’m not willing to maintain that minimum level of preparation, something is off with my attitude, and I need to adjust it.

I separate my Freedom Foods into three categories, and I suggest that you do the same.

Category One: Fat Releasing Foods

These are the foods I choose when I want to get leaner.  Here are three foods from the three macronutrient groups:

Fats: Coconut Oil, Grass Fed Pastured Butter, Olive Oil

Proteins: Eggs, Organic Chicken, Tuna

Carbohydrates:  Romaine Lettuce, Broccoli, Cauliflower.

Category Two: Maintenance Foods

These are the foods I choose for more variety, and to prevent boredom.

Fats: Cheddar Cheese, yogurt, Swiss

Proteins: Uncured Hot Dogs, Pepperoni, Uncured Canadian Bacon

Carbohydrates: Apples, Grapefruit, Berries

Category Three:  Occasion Foods

These are for holidays, birthdays, and celebrations.

Fancy soft cheeses, nuts, dark chocolate sweetened with stevia, desserts made with Xylitol.

I believe that one problem with modern eating is that special occasion foods have replaced simple nutrition in our daily lives.  We shouldn’t expect to stay lean and healthy eating the equivalent of cake at every meal.

In order to get and maintain a leaner healthier body, we have to eat with wisdom and maturity at most meals.

What are your fat releasing, maintenance, and occasion foods?

If you can answer these questions, I can consider the Sugar Freedom program a success.

Getting the most out of Sugar Freedom

It’s day six of the six week sugar freedom challenge, and it’s time to establish our ongoing fat release eating and moving pattern.

The goal of this six week program is to learn how to get and stay healthy for life.  It’s a big goal, but we can do it.

Individuals who have a permanent solution for a healthy body learn a way of eating and moving that makes them healthy and happy, and then they keep practicing what they have learned.

You are here to find out if eliminating sugar and grains, lifting weights, and doing interval training gets you to your health goal.  If it works, you learn how to keep it up for life.

The longer I coach, the more evidence I see that this is the best method.  Here is today’s menu, which is an example of how I eat each day.

Wake up:  Freedom Tonic, water.

Morning: Coffee with organic heavy cream: 3T maximum for the day.

Breakfast: 1/2 cup organic Greek yogurt. 1 oz. walnuts.  1 cup blueberries

Lunch: 1-2 chicken thighs, mixed green salad with oil and vinegar dressing, 1 cup broccoli, 1t butter

Dinner: Repeat lunch.  Add ons: 1/2 avocado, 2T salsa.

I don’t snack because I simply have no appetite for it, and my clients and readers generally report the same thing.  If you find yourself hungry, have a hard boiled egg, celery with salsa, or an extra serving of  the protein you have made for the day.

The way to win on this program is to simply eat more of what is already on the menu if you get hungry.  Just don’t go off plan by eating sugary or starchy foods.  This keeps your appetite under control, and that is the key to your success.

Leave me any comments of questions you have so that you can get results.

Get the program at www.sugarfreedom.com

 

Introducing Freedom Fridays

How much weight could you lose if you could stick to your food and fitness plan over the week-end?

If you’re like me, staying on plan is easier from Monday to Friday than it is on Saturday and Sunday.  My usual work and training schedule helps me to keep my commitments.  I look, feel, and perform better when I keep sugar, grains, and seconds off of the menu so it’s easier to leave them alone when there is work to be done.

When Saturday and Sunday come around, the little voice in my head says, “Don’t you deserve to let yourself go? Everyone else is doing it.”  As the Sugar Freedom Woman, I almost always stay strong, but I do get tempted!

Here is how I handle the week-ends and stay slim.

During the week I follow a Ketogenic food plan.  In addition to leaving out grains and sugar, I also eliminate fruit, nuts, and dairy except for the organic heavy cream I use in my morning coffee.  On the week-end I pick one day when I can enjoy a piece of fruit, a serving of stevia sweetened dark chocolate, or an elegant serving of cheese.

On very special occasions, I will make my Freedom Chocolate Mousse, and serve it with strawberries and crushed pistachios.  It is delicious, elegant, and it doesn’t trigger my appetite.

If we eat simply during the week, we can add back a few of our Fancy Freedom Foods without gaining fat.

Here is an example of a typical week-day menu:

Breakfast: 2 Eggs, 2 slices uncured Canadian Bacon, 1 cup spinach, 1T salsa.

Lunch: Large leafy green salad with olive oil and balsamic vinegar.  2 braised chicken thighs. 1/2 avocado.

Dinner:  2 Lamb chops, green salad as above, roasted broccoli.

On a Sunday or a holiday, I would add a serving of brie with a Granny Smith apple to lunch or dinner.  Luckily, one of my favorite restaurants has a special cheese plate daily, so I have that when my husband is having dessert.

It works beautifully to keep me happy, satisfied, and lean.

What are some special Freedom Foods that you can enjoy on week-ends and special occasions?

If you want to take your Sugar Freedom results to the next level, join my Six Week Challenge.  Get meal plans, training, social support, and coaching calls.

E-mail me: catherine@sugarfreedom.com for all the details.  Our next challenge starts November 1st: Sugar Freedom Day!

I’m not normal. That’s why I can help.

By the time I was six years old, I had started to figure out that I was different from my slender sisters.

They were a few years older than me, and they never ever seemed to be as hungry as I was.  I almost always cleaned my plate, and asked for more, but my sisters, especially Nancy who was two years older than me, almost always had to be encouraged and cajoled to eat enough.

After I was put on my first calorie counting diet at age eight, things got worse.

I remember always being hungry, sneaking food, and getting fatter.

I remember all of the names people used to call me.  My friends and family used cute names like Chubette, Pudgeball, Weeble, and Melon Belly.  They wanted me to lose weight because they wanted me to be healthy and happy.

They also wanted me to lose weight because I embarrassed them.

I was willing anything to make the people around me proud, happy, and kind, so when I discovered that cigarettes and Dexatrim could curb my ravenous appetite I started smoking and taking diet pills almost every day.

For the next 20 years, I smoked when I was hungry, and that kept me from becoming obese.

Then, I met the love of my life and we decided to marry and have a child.  I quit smoking, became pregnant, and I started to gain weight at a shocking rate.

Years of research and study as a trainer and nutrition specialist have shown me that I was suffering from insulin resistance.  Gestational diabetes was suspected when my blood sugar rose, and I developed pregnancy induced hypertension.

Thank goodness our son was born healthy, but my weight had soared from 125 to more than 205, and after delivery it didn’t want to come off.  I took seven years of cardio and low fat dieting to get my weight down to 165: still clinically obese.

It wasn’t until I stopped trying to diet and exercise like a “normal” person that the excess fat came off for good.

Normal people seem to be able to lose fat by cutting calories and doing more exercise.  The trouble is that normal low fat foods like bananas, oatmeal, and low fat yogurt make me ravenously hungry.

Yes, you read that right.  Some of my most powerful over eating triggers are bananas, grapes, whole wheat bread, and rice cakes of all things!  No wonder I couldn’t overcome obesity for seven years, even though I was doing up to 12 hours of cardio a week!

Yes, you read that right.  Some of my most powerful over eating triggers are bananas, grapes, whole wheat bread, and rice cakes of all things!  No wonder I couldn’t overcome obesity for seven years, even though I was doing up to 12 hours of cardio a week. On top of that, the cardio wasn’t making me leaner, it was making me hungrier.

Back in 2008 everything changed.  I started doing body weight intervals, and lifting weights.   At the same time, I stopped eating sugar and grains.  I lost all the weight I wanted to, and I never gained it back.

Two years ago, I began offering fat loss challenges to my readers and clients.  Our next challenge begins on November 1st., and I want you to join me in giving up sugar and grains for six weeks.

You will receive six weeks of meal plans, including recipes, shopping lists, and troubleshooting tips.

We will also train three times per week, and we will support each other on a private Facebook page.

In addition, everyone will will receive one 20 minute coaching call each week.

Finally, if you take before and after photos, and share them with me and the private group, you will be eligible to win a $250.00 prize for the most inspiring transformation.  This will be voted on by me and the participants only.

The cost is $99.  I will send you an invoice through Paypal.com.

Simply send an e-mail to me:

catherine@sugarfreedom.com and tell me you want to join the challenge.

The average result for those who complete the challenge is a loss of ten pounds of fat.  One of my clients, Mauri C.,  lost a stunning 22 pounds in six weeks.

If you have tried “Normal” weight loss plans without getting the results you want, it’s time to work with a coach who has overcome overweight and obesity herself, while helping her clients and readers lose thousands of pounds and inches.

Proof: You have been lied to about sugar and saturated fat.

I have suspected for years that the American public has been lied to about the effects of sugar and saturated fat on health, especially heart disease.  Finally, postdoctoral fellow and researcher  Cristin E. Kearns has uncovered documents that prove that the sugar industry paid scientists to shift the blame for rising rates of heart disease from sugar to saturated fat.

Here is a quote from the article that was published in the New York Times:

“The sugar industry paid scientists in the 1960s to play down the link between sugar and heart disease and promote saturated fat as the culprit instead, newly released historical documents show.

The internal sugar industry documents, recently discovered by a researcher at the University of California, San Francisco, and published Monday in JAMA Internal Medicine, suggest that five decades of research into the role of nutrition and heart disease, including many of today’s dietary recommendations, may have been largely shaped by the sugar industry.

“They were able to derail the discussion about sugar for decades,” said Stanton Glantz, a professor of medicine at U.C.S.F. and an author of the JAMA Internal Medicine paper.”

I want to urge you to read the entire article, especially if you suspect that sugar has impacted your health.

http://www.nytimes.com/2016/09/13/well/eat/how-the-sugar-industry-shifted-blame-to-fat.

This is about so much more than the theory that sugar consumption drives fat storage and accelerates aging.  This is about studies and government regulations that tell us to eat a certain way in order to prevent the number one cause of death in our nation: heart disease.

Yes, I cut sugar, and the grains that break down into sugar, out of my diet in order to lose weight and look younger.  I changed my diet because I want to sing and dance and look my best for as long as I possibly can.  I wrote Sugar Freedom in order to offer my solution to other people like me who couldn’t stop eating sugar and starch without eliminating it permanently.  I became a trainer and coach because I wanted to turn my cause into my livelihood.

Until I read that article, I admit that I felt some concern over studies that conflict with my experience.  There are large studies that show a correlation between eating red meat and saturated fat and shorter lifespan.  Here is my theory on that correlation:

I believe that eating saturated fat is healthy, but only in the absence of sugar, and the foods that break down into sugar.  So that means that a serving of grass fed organic beef with a side of spinach and garlic sautéed in pastured butter is incredibly healthy.  Take that beef and put it on a bun made with wheat and top it with ketchup made with sugar, and that dish isn’t healthy anymore, due to the insulin raising and inflammatory effects of the condiment and the bun.

I wish the formula for fat loss and appetite management was simpler.  It would be so easy to sell a diet that just cut sugar and not whole grains.  It would be so easy to sell a diet that told you to cheat with whatever food or drink that you wanted very week-end.  Sugar Freedom is not for the casual dieter who wants to drop a few pounds.  Pardon the drama, but for me and many of my clients, getting off of sugar and grain is a matter of life and death.

I used to be scared to share my story and my solution.

No more.

If any other diet works for you: Weight Watchers, Dukan, Ornish, that is wonderful.  Please, go ahead and try portion control and calorie restriction first.  If you absolutely have to get off of sugar and grains, then please, take the quiz on this page, try the free sample menu, and if you find that it works, join us.

catherine@sugarfreedom.com

Three Diet Fixes You Can Use Right Now

Three Diet Fixes You Can Use Right Now

1.  Find out exactly how much you are eating with www.fatsecret.com

Fat secret is a totally free, easy to use, and accurate food and calorie tracker that gives you the information you need in order to be confident that you are following your food plan correctly.  For example, if you are starting a Ketogenic diet, you need to make sure that you are eating 20 grams or less of carbohydrates a day in order to get into nutritional ketosis for the first time.

If you are training to build muscle, you may be following the advice to get one gram of protein per pound of your lean body weight.  It’s pretty hard to get the results you want if you’re guessing, so it’s always best to have an accurate tracking program.

2.  Simplify Your Menus

You don’t need to prepare elaborate meals in order to create satisfying meals that you actually want to eat.  As a matter of fact, studies show that a little less variety helps to reduce appetite.  That way you eat less automatically.  This is a strategy I have literally been using for years, and it never fails.

Here’s how:  I pick 3 proteins, 3 carbs, and 3 fats as the basis of my meals for the day.  I have even used the same foods for 3 days in a row if I absolutely have to shed fat fast.  Here is an example of a daily meal plan using this tip:

Proteins:  Eggs, Shrimp, Chicken.  Carbohydrates: Avocado, Romaine Lettuce, Tomatoes.  Fats: Cream, Avocado Oil, Olive Oil

Breakfast: 2 scrambled eggs, 1/4 avocado, shrimp.

Lunch: Chicken breast, romaine lettuce, tomatoes, 1/4 avocado

Dinner: Shrimp, romaine lettuce, tomato, hard boiled egg.

Olive oil and vinegar dressing, and 1T home made mayo (made with avocado oil, 1 egg yolk, lemon juice, and cider vinegar) are included to make these meals enjoyable without over stimulating my appetite.

3. Slow Down and Chew Every Bite.

Recently, I was shocked to learn that eating too fats was a common cause of stomach bloating.  Imagine, instead of doing all those crunches that really don’t help to get you a flatter belly, you could simply slow down and enjoy your food.

Try this experiment: see what happens when you try to chew each bite 30 times.  By practicing the 30 bite technique, a healthy sewing pace of 20 per bite will become natural and normal.

My readers, clients, and I can assure you that quick fixes like these have helped us lose up to 5 pounds in three days.

If you want to simplify your workout, I highly recommend The Venus Factor plan that you can find at this link: ===>Click Here<===

I used this program to get fantastic results before I became a personal trainer.  The entire program can be done with Dumb Bells, which is a big plus if you train at home, or in a busy gym where the bar bells and the squat rack are often taken!

I hope this report was helpful, and I want you to e-mail me: catherine@sugarfreedom.com if you need tips, strategy, or coaching to help you reach your goals.

P.S.: E-mail me if you want to join the free Facebook Accountability Challenge that starts September 6th.

Free Weight Loss Accountability Challenge

It’s been eight weeks since the floor literally blew up at Gordon Studio.

The doors are closed, much of the equipment sold, and everything I kept is put away in its place.

It has been wonderful to get back in the gym, and return to the training that changed my body and my life eight years ago.

So many times, I have pursued the latest thing in diet and exercise in order to get leaner faster.

Every time I have had to face the fact that I can’t get greedy and try to cut my calories too low, while making my training sessions too long.

In my case, that always leads to rebellious over eating, skipped workouts, and beating myself up for fooling  myself again.

Does any of that sound familiar to you?

I don’t stay down for long though.  My solution is to get back to what works:

No sugar, grains, or processed vegetable oils in my food plan, a limit of twenty grams of carbs per day until my appetite is obviously reduced, and three weight lifting sessions per week without fail.

I add bodyweight training, yoga, or dance class two times per week, and I make sure I do activities I enjoy on my two recovery days like gardening, walking with my husband and son, and training and romping with my dogs.

The one thing that guarantees that I will take all of these actions is accountability from a like minded group of individuals who are pursuing clear fitness goals.

If this style of health training sounds good to you, this is my invitation to join me starting September 6th for a four week accountability challenge in the closed Facebook group: Sugar Freedom/LBD Challenge.  The group is free to join.

Go to https://www.facebook.com/groups/972825209446395/  and click the join button in the cover image.

If you would like meal plans, tailored training sessions, or coaching by phone or Skype, please e-mail me: catherine@sugarfreedom.com by August 29th.   Tailored plans are $50.00 for a limited time, and weekly coaching is $250.00 for the 4 week session.

Let’s get leaner, stronger, and happier together.

 

Adobe Spark

Three Great Reasons To Get Off Of Sugar

Here are three great reasons so get off of sugar, plus a free meal plan.

There are so many reasons to leave sugar behind, and today, I’m going to share my top three.

#1.  Eliminating sugar makes you look younger.  When I finally committed to changing my health lifestyle, it wasn’t just because I was sick of being overweight.  What really drove me nuts was being asked if I was my son’s grandmother, and being offered the senior discount, regularly, at age 43.  Within six month of going sugar free, I looked so much younger, and my skin looked so much better, that I threw out all of my foundation makeup, and many of my readers report that they have been able to do the same thing, including my sister Patty, who is 5 years older than me.  How does giving up sugar make you look younger?  When the body doesn’t have to metabolize as much glucose, it doesn’t produce as many age promoting free radicals.  Also, burning sugar causes a process called glycation, which increases the visible aging of the skin.  Here is a brief description of glycation from PubMed:

Nutrition and aging skin: sugar and glycation.
Danby FW1.
Abstract
The effect of sugars on aging skin is governed by the simple act of covalently cross-linking two collagen fibers, which renders both of them incapable of easy repair. Glucose and fructose link the amino acids present in the collagen and elastin that support the dermis, producing advanced glycation end products or “AGEs.” This process is accelerated in all body tissues when sugar is elevated and is further stimulated by ultraviolet light in the skin. The effect on vascular, renal, retinal, coronary, and cutaneous tissues is being defined, as are methods of reducing the glycation load through careful diet and use of supplements.
Copyright 2010. Published by Elsevier Inc.

So when you lower your sugar consumption, you can lower your visible age too.

#2.  Eliminating sugar aids weight and fat loss by reducing appetite.  I knew that getting off of sugar, and the foods that break down to glucose like grains, had a powerful effect on my appetite.  In the four years that I have spent as a Certified Personal Trainer and Transformation Coach, I have had the rewarding experience of seeing many of my clients and readers lose their cravings for sugary starchy foods.  The result?  They lost weight without experiencing the hunger and constant “food thoughts,” that are a normal feature of typical diets.  Although most formal studies on sugar have addressed the dangers of consuming too much, one major study published in the journal “Obesity,” demonstrated that  cutting sugar from children’s diets improved their health in just ten days. http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/oby.21371/abstract

#3. Reducing sugar consumption improves mood.  When my readers reduce sugar in their meals, they automatically reduce processed foods.  Why?  The vast majority of foods that come in a bag or a box contain sugar.   Eliminate sugar and get rid of foods that have been shown to increase the risk of depression.  A study published in the British Journal of Psychiatry found that, “In middle-aged participants, a processed food dietary pattern is a risk factor for CES–D depression 5 years later, whereas a whole food pattern is protective.”

The truth is that a sugar free lifestyle can make you look and feel so good that you will be too busy enjoying life to miss the junk food.  So how do you get started?  Here is a sample of the kind of menus I follow every day.  (Be sure to check with your doctor or a registered dietitian before changing your diet, especially if you have a health condition.)

Enter your e-mail in the box in the upper right hand corner to get another meal plan, recipes, and to take the sugar addiction quiz.

Want even more options for great results?  Get the Sugar Freedom System at SugarFreedom.com <===Click here!

These menus help my readers lose fat and keep it off.

These menus help my readers lose fat and keep it off.