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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.

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.

 

 

 

 

 

Getting The Most Out Of The Last 7 Days Of The Challenge

We are coming to the last week of our customer appreciation challenge, and I want it to be your very best.

These challenges are so powerful because they teach you how to bring your very best efforts to your heath and fitness goals.  Body transformation is a creative process, and to bring an imagined goal into reality, you need a structure for success.

Here is a sample success structure for creating your shape including:  eating, training, and recovery.

  1. Plan your meals.  Here is the eating strategy that I am currently using:

On awakening: Water, Freedom Tonic, Coffee with organic heavy cream

Breakfast: 2 eggs, 2 strips bacon, 1-2 cups non starchy vegetables cooked in pastured butter or coconut oil. 2T salsa, 1/3 avocado.  I make sure to cook enough vegetables for lunch and dinner.

Lunch: 3 oz chicken, 2 cups green salad with cucumber, olive oil and vinegar dressing. 1 cup cooked non starchy vegetable (today is yellow squash and cabbage), 2 T salsa, 1/3 avocado.

Dinner: Repeat lunch.

For the next 6 days simply use different proteins like beef or turkey, and different vegetables like broccoli or asparagus.

Note that I am leaving out my usual serving of fruit for these seven days.

2. Plan your training.  If you are a Gordon Studio member, all you have to do is come to class at least 3 times during the week.  For those of you who aren’t in Sonora, I recommend 2 resistance training sessions, and one high intensity interval session as a minimum, with an extra HIIT session if desired.  Also, add enjoyable movement like, dance, gardening, window shopping, or yoga.  Just don’t over do it, and end up spiking your hunger.

3. Get to bed.  I believe fat oxidation is optimized when we sleep, and we have excellent research that shows that good sleep helps us manage our appetite: especially for sweets and starches.

Here is a body weight HIIT session for you to use this week, or anytime.

 

Screen Shot 2015-06-27 at 9.32.49 AM

Holiday Recipes

Thanksgiving and all of the holidays we celebrate are more fun with guilt and trigger free desserts.

Please try these. They are easy, delicious, healthy, and great to share with friends.

 

Freedom No-Bake Pumpkin Mousse
Serves 4

1/2 12 oz package cream cheese
1/2 15 oz can of plain pumpkin
1/4 cup heavy whipping cream
1/4 cup Xylitol granulated sweetener
1/2 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
1/2 teaspoon vanilla

In a medium bowl blend all ingredients well with an electric hand mixer. Pour into dessert bowls or glasses and chill at least one hour. Sprinkle with cinnamon before serving.

 

Sugar Freedom Chocolate Mousse

1 ripe avocado
1/4 cup cocoa powder
10 drops stevia or 1/4 cup swerve (or Xylitol to taste.)
1/4 c raw cream, almond milk, or coconut milk
1 teaspoon Vanilla extract

puree/ serve chilled

Menu For the Day Before “After” Pictures

We’re coming to the close of another 6 Week Sugar Freedom Challenge, and I want you to have this sample menu.

It’s got a little less fat, no fruit, and it contains some of my favorite water releasing vegetables.  I have noticed that on the days when I eat asparagus, mushrooms, spinach, cucumber, and parsley, I have less bloat, and I wake up looking my best.

Anther tip is to have fish for lunch or dinner.  Simply place a fish fillet on foil, squeeze lemon on top, add salt and pepper, and a tablespoon of salsa.  Close up the foil and cook in the oven at 350 degrees for 20 minutes, or until the fish is cooked through.

Here is your sample menu for the final day of a challenge or transformation contest.

Breakfast:
2 eggs, poached, served over a bed of spinach cooked in olive oil, and topped with salsa.
Snack:
Celery Sticks with organic salsa.  (No fruit salsas for now.)
Lunch:
3-4 oz. organic turkey breast, served with 2 cups romaine lettuce, cucumber, celery, and olive oil and vinegar dressing.
1 cup steamed broccoli.
Snack:
1-2 more ounces of turkey, more celery and salsa if you are hungry for a snack.
Dinner:
3-4 oz broiled salmon, 1 cup steamed asparagus with lemon, 1 cup sliced mushrooms cooked in olive or coconut oil.
I designed this plan for it’s simplicity, and it’s bloat releasing effect.  If you own the Sugar Freedom program this is day one of Sugar Freedom XP.
Continue to drink your tonic each morning, do your 3 Minute Wake Up Call, and perform 3 TT Home Workout Revolution training sessions per week.
Here is the recipe for the tonic:
16oz water, juice of ½ lemon, 1T Bragg’s Apple Cider Vinegar, enough liquid stevia to cut some of the sourness.  If it’s too strong, reduce the vinegar and lemon, and work up to the full amount.
Drink a minimum of 64 oz of pure water per day.
The result?  Expect glowing skin, and a noticably smaller waistline on Picture Day!
Finally, whether or not you are in the challenge, please send your questions to: catherine@sugarfreedom.com, because Sugar Freedom is only as successful as you are.
Catherine

 

We Are Unicorns

imagesWe Are Unicorns

A few weeks ago, I tore through Harriet Brown’s book,
“Body of Truth,” How Science, History, and Culture Drive Our Obsession With Weight, and What We Can Do About It.

Ever since I was a teenager, I have suspected that unrealistic, even unhealthy, weight ideals fostered by Western culture and driven by markets and media are promoting behaviors that make us fatter. The overwhelming desire to reduce body weight and size seems to trigger physiological and emotional changes that drive fat storage and limit happy productive movement.

As a Certified Personal Trainer and sugar reduction advocate, my personal curiosity has changed to a professional obligation as I try to understand why traditional diet and exercise seem to be backfiring on so many women and men who are simply seeking a body they feel at home and at peace in.

Here is my theory. If the media proclaims that a normal, healthy body is too fat, many individuals will go on diets that actually promote more fat storage, and they will be worse off that they would have been if they had never dieted at all.

I thought I was unique in the fact that my pediatrician put me on a calorie counting regimen when I was just eight years old. It turns out that according to Harriet Brown’s research the average age of a first diet for girls is eight. Average.

The earliness of my first diet may not have been unique, but “Body of Truth” does argue that my experience of permanent fat loss may be. This is the current reality for me and many of my readers and clients: many of us have lost more than 30, 50, 70 pounds and beyond, and kept it off for years. In her book, Brown quotes psychologist Deb Burgard,

“People who have maintained a weight loss, who eat flexibly, who are truly at peace with food- they’re like unicorns.”

Deb Burgard’s quote is an accurate description of the way I have felt since 2008 when I turned everything I was doing in terms of eating and exercise upside down. Now, at just shy of age 51 I feel more empowered, more joyful, energetic, and yes, beautiful than I have ever felt in my life. Am I more beautiful than I was at 18, or 27, or on my wedding day? Probably not not, but who cares.

I am living in a body that allows me to fulfill my dreams of love, work, and creativity. Am I skinny?

Nope.

Is any part of my body flat?

Certainly not.

So what. I feel healthy, energetic, authentic, and powerful. I have the enormous honor of doing work that I believe in. When I walk in the door of Gordon Studio, put on the music, turn to my class, and say,

“You know what I want.” (That means the best form and technique my students can give me.)

I feel excitement, purpose, and a kind of wild joy.

I feel magic.

We are unicorns.

The method for becoming a unicorn is this: Eat the food that nourishes and satisfies your, without triggering overeating. Practice move meant that challenges, excites, and even exhilarates you without pain. Rest, recover, and connect how you eat and move to what you want to give and achieve in your life. Want health and self acceptance for everyone else as much as you want it for yourself.

What is more wonderful than being a unicorn? Having other unicorns to play with.images

6 Week Transformation Challenge: Finish Strong

How to Stick the Landing.

Thank you to everyone who voted in the latest Turbulence Training Transformation Contest.

Jim Junette placed second in the Men Over 40 category, and with 4 finalists qualifying, Gordon Studio remains the top Turbulence Training Gym in America.

How does our little studio in rural Tuolumne County keep producing champions?

Were understand that eating, moving, mindset, and support create a powerful structure for success.

Now, those of you who are participating in the 6 Week Challenge are moving into the final week, and I’m going to share some important instructions for getting the results you want in your after photos.

First: Have an eating plan for the next 9 days. We are following Sugar Freedom, and one of the tools for success in our eating strategy is the Bonus Meal. The bonus meal is one meal where you get to eat any of your desired favorite foods, so long as they are not “Trigger Foods.” Note: Trigger Foods are those foods that you cannot eat in a standard serving, and/or those foods that stimulate your appetite so much that you overeat after consuming them.

So when will your next Bonus Meal be? Will you have it on the 23rd, the day after the challenge ends? Do you celebrate Christmas, and do you want your special meal on the 25th? Hanukkah begins on the 17th: will that be your bonus day? Remember: The bonus meal comes once every 7 days.

The Gordons celebrate on Christmas Eve, and I’ve scheduled my next bonus meal will be for the 16th.

Now, this is important: leading up to “after” pictures on the 22nd, I want to follow my photo ready eating plan on the 19th, 20, and 21st.

Here is a sample day from that plan:

Day 1
Breakfast:  
2 eggs, poached, served over a bed of spinach cooked in olive oil, and topped with salsa.

Snack:
Celery Sticks with organic salsa. (No fruit salsas for now.)

Lunch:
3-4 oz. organic turkey breast, served with 2 cups romaine lettuce, cucumber, celery, and olive oil and vinegar dressing.
1 cup steamed broccoli.

Snack:
1-2 more ounces of turkey, more celery and salsa if you are hungry for a snack.

Dinner:
3-4 oz broiled salmon, 1 cup steamed asparagus with lemon, 1 cup sliced mushrooms cooked in olive or coconut oil.

I designed this plan for it’s simplicity, and it’s bloat releasing effect. If you own the Sugar Freedom program this is day one of Sugar Freedom XP.

Continue to drink your tonic each morning, do your 3 Minute Wake Up Call, and perform 3 TT Home Workout Revolution training sessions per week.

Here is the recipe for the tonic:

16oz water, juice of ½ lemon, 1T Bragg’s Apple Cider Vinegar, enough liquid stevia to cut some of the sourness. If it’s too strong, reduce the vinegar and lemon, and work up to the full amount.
Drink a minimum of 64 oz of pure water per day.

The result? Expect glowing skin, and a noticably smaller waistline on Picture Day!

Finally, whether or not you are in the challenge, please send your questions to: catherine@sugarfreedom.com, because Sugar Freedom is only as successful as you are.

Catherine

Will You Vote?

Hello Everyone,

This is why I became a Personal Trainer and diet author. After 35 years I found the solution to my weight problem, and I wanted to share it with my family, my community, and the world.

I am so honored by the dedication of Jim, Janet, Phyliss, and Pam. They are all finalists in the current Turbulence Training Transformation Contest.

By combining TT and the principles of Sugar Freedom, they have achieved amazing results.

Please go to this link===>http://www.turbulencetrainingcontest.com/vote_1114.shtml<===== to see their before and afters, read their essays, and vote. There is no need to opt in or share your name or e-mail. The success of my students and readers keeps me going every day. Sometimes, I do get tired, and I want to eat the way I see everyone around me eating. Then, I think about my clients and their commitment, and I can stick to the plan that has given me a real purpose in my working life. It is so worth it. http://www.turbulencetrainingcontest.com/vote_1114.shtml

Jim J.- Men over 40
Janet L.- Women over 40
Phyliss R.-Women over 40
Pam J. Pro Division

It’s Sugar Freedom Day!

What better day than November First to get off of sugar?

Yes, the halloween candy frenzy is over, and I can’t think of anything scarier than the masses of candy that could be haunting your house today.

My 13 year old son had a blast last night trick or treating as Dr. Who with his friends, and I am so grateful that I have no idea where his pillowcase of loot is stashed right now.

In years past I would certainly find his bucket and swipe the sugary junk that he was least likely to miss. Yes, I ended up eating the loser candy that nobody really likes, but I’m an addict, so that’s no surprise.

This year, I feel calm, happy, and satisfied right now after my breakfast of eggs, uncured bacon, cauliflower, and avocado. In a little while I’m headed out to the indoor farmer’s market for raw cream and other freedom friendly goodies.

This is when I want to remind you that the key to getting and staying off of sugar is to “Eat Something Else.” If you ate out of bounds yesterday, please don’t ry to starve or deprive the sugar out of your system. Get your healthy fats, moderate protein, and abundant “above ground” vegetables today so that you feel great tomorrow.

Last night we had a wonderful soaking rain here in Sonora, and I got to walk the puppy in the fresh air today. I’m so grateful that I don’t have to experience the joint pain that I used get after eating bread and sweets.

Now it’s time to focus on our very best training and eating strategies as another Turbulence Training Transformation Contest wraps up in a little more than two weeks. I’ll be drinking my tonic and plenty of water, staying away from processed meats and cheeses, and making sure to eat the water releasing veggies like asparagus, cucumbers, and spinach at every meal.

It is so worth it!

Abs after age 50?  Yes: With Sugar Freedom

Abs after age 50? Yes: With Sugar Freedom

A New Way To Get Off of Sugar, and Reach Your Goal Weight

My friend James Giada has some great tips for you today. I couldn’t agree more!
Top 5 Tips to Going Sugar-Free Pain-Free

We all know that sugar is at the heart of the obesity epidemic, not to mention at the root of all of our deadliest diseases…………cancer, cardiovascular disease and diabetes.

Sugar is not your friend and you know it needs to go.

The problem is, going sugar-free is not easy.

But, if you think you may be ready to go sugar-free and you’re worried you will struggle, it is important to keep things in perspective…….after all, if you were an elf it would be much more difficult……………

Buddy the Elf : We elves try to stick to the four main food groups: candy, candy canes, candy corns and syrup.

Because you are likely not an elf, cutting sugar can be realistic for you, but it never hurts to have a few tools to help you make the process a bit easier.

I have been coaching nutrition and fitness for more than a decade. Much of that time has been spent studying what it is that makes people successful with their diet and what causes people to fail. By learning some of the common characteristics of success, I can put together plans of action that will increase the likelihood of my clients being successful.

Here are 5 simple things you can do to increase your likelihood of success with going sugar-free.

1. Replace your Sugar Calories: Everything we eat has calories. You can’t just cut something out and expect that it won’t be difficult. Part of the reason, cutting sugar out is difficult is because by cutting it out you’ve immediately removed calories from your diet. Those calories will be missed and your body will respond with hunger pangs making your life difficult.

The best options to replace sugar are proteins (chicken, beef, eggs) and vegetables.

By eating more protein, you will also be fueling your muscle tissue which will give your body the desired aesthetic shape you are looking for while the amino acids in your protein can also be quickly converted into energy when needed.

Veggies will help to fill you up by providing volume to your meal along with providing you with vitamins, minerals and anti oxidants that will not only improve your health but also help you to fight off cravings.

2. Stay Hydrated: As you reduce sugar your body will release much of it’s water stores. It is very important to drink more fluids to replenish these stores. Dehydration causes lethargy and can create emotional distress. Additionally, dehydration is often confused with hunger. All of these negative side effects lead to more food (sugar) cravings.

Drink at least 2-3 litres (65-100 fl. oz.) of water every day.

3. Be Prepared: Preparation is the key to dietary success. Most bad nutrition decisions are made at the spur of the moment, when you just want the “easiest” option. Think about it. Most times we order dinner in because it’s way easier than preparing our own food.

When your fridge is filled with plenty of prepared veggies and lean meats it is much easier to make the right choice. If your next meal is as simple as opening up 2 containers to portion out a serving of protein and a few servings of vegetables all of the sudden, ordering in becomes more work than making your own meal.

Take some time every week to chop veggies and prepare some lean meats ahead of time, so that your fridge is stocked with food, ready to go.

4. Keep a Food Journal: Writing down everything you are eating is one of the most effective accountability tools I’ve ever come across. The simple task of having to answer for all of your food choice actions makes you more likely to want to make the best food choices.

Tips to keeping a food journal:

Be honest – record everything you eat and the time you ate it.
Be accurate – record portion sizes as closely as you can measure.
Be complete – include details such as how the food was prepared, and the addition of any toppings or condiments.
Be consistent – always carry your food diary with you or use a diet-tracking application on your smart phone.

5. Build your Support Network: It is nearly impossible to have success with any type of dietary change without the help of others. Search out a support network whether it’s your family, friends or an online forum. It is important to know that there are people that care, have your back and want to help you.

Many other people have experienced what you are going through. Anytime, you are struggling, reach out to your network. It is important to know that you are not alone.

Going sugar-free is one of the best things you can do for your fat loss and for your health. Your body will thank you for going through the process and you will be thankful that you made the decision.

About James Gaida:
I am a fat loss expert and certified Precision Nutrition Coach. I have spent more than 13 years coaching clients in both nutrition and fitness. In that time I have also became certified as a Specialist in Performance Nutrition and a Certified Fitness Trainer. I also own many leather bound books and yeah, I’m kind of a big deal!

My baby, 4 Day Fat Loss (4DFL) is dedicated to teaching simple techniques to rapidly burn fat, increase energy and live a healthier life. If you want to find out how to burn fat quickly and transform your body check out the 4DFL Method.