No sugar For 14 Years

Is a sugar free diet sustainable?

Find out in the video below.

Catherine Gordon Wears a Betsey Johnson Dress From 1988

I stopped eating sugar, grains, and processed oils in 2008, and it changed my life for the better. Now that my blood sugar is stable, and my insulin resistance is vastly improved, I almost never experience sugar cravings.

If I do have a craving, I have learned to substitute nourishing foods and enjoyable activities that replace the snacking, shopping, and smoking I used to do.

You can learn more by watching the video in this post. There are also many posts in the history section on the right that describe the way I have been eating and training for the past 14 years. So many of us are looking for ways to consume less and create more as we look toward the future. As always, I want you to eat for yourself, and train for what you love.

4 Keys to Weight Loss

Here is the weight loss question I answered on Quora today:

How do I decrease weight from 74 kg to 60 kg of a 5’3 female?


In 2008, I followed a food and fitness program that took my weight from 67 kg to 60 kg in 12 weeks. What was even better is that I lost three dress sizes in that time and my waist went from 78cm to 66cm.

Here are my 4 keys to losing weight and sizes quickly and permanently:

  1. Eat adequate amounts of whole natural protein and fat, and eliminate added sugars and processed carbs. The saying I used during my program was, “Nothing out of a bag or a box.”
  2. Lift weights to maintain muscle and metabolic rate. The top goal of weight lifting isn’t calorie burning. The top goal is to build or maintain muscle so that your diet won’t burn it and leave you with a higher body fat percentage and a slower metabolism.
  3. Add interval training to increase fat burning and help manage appetite.
  4. Set goals for success. Choose a specific period to focus on your food and fitness changes. In my training practice my clients used 6 or 12 week programs. Choose a smart weight loss goal. Two pounds a week is reasonable when you are eating and training effectively. Follow process goals as well as outcome goals. Plan your menus, shop for, and prepare your food. Schedule your training sessions: for example: lift 3 times per week, and do interval training 3 times per week.

In my case, the diet I used was a whole food diet of 20 grams or less of carbohydrates per day from vegetables that grow above the ground, 100 grams of protein, and 80 grams of fat. I call this a “Leaner Keto” diet, and I used these exact macros to get excellent results when I did the “Ketogains” program a few years ago.

I am not a doctor or dietitian, and you should consult one before starting a diet and exercise program. My motto is, “Eat for yourself,” because I do believe that you need to discover and focus on what works for you when it comes to food and fitness.

Wishing you well,


If you have question on food, fitness, and goal setting, post one in the comments or email me at:

My complete nutrition program is available here: Click Here for Sugar Freedom

My book on Amazon:

Freedom Friday

“If I could stick to my program on the week-ends, I’d be at goal by now.”

This is a statement I have heard from so many of my clients and readers.  We seem to be able to follow our best fitness and nutrition plans during the week, but when the week-end rolls around our inner teenager takes over.

The inner teen wants to eat, drink, and loaf with abandon, but if you want to be leaner, fitter, and closer to your goals on Monday, you need a plan for Saturday and Sunday.

What has worked for me and my students is the substitution of leisure and fun for food and drink.  I adore going to movies, plays, comedy shows, and museums.  Reading, gardening, catching up with friends, learning something new, even enjoying social media can be relaxing without physical consequences.

I believe that as a society we have poured too much of our hope of pleasure and enjoyment into food, and we have stopped getting our kicks from playing sports, dancing, and going to concerts.  Even when we do get out and amuse ourselves, food has become part of the entertainment.

The way to shift fun back into living instead of eating is to start being aware that we are doing just that.  May I suggest that on the week-ends we decide to enhance our health by seeking out the activities that make us happy.

Starting Saturday, May 6th, I will begin teaching Cathy’s Fit Class at Sol-Y-Breath in Sonora. It’s located at14709 Mono Way, Sonora, CA 95370, near Sears. This class is gentle, restorative, and fun while keeping us mindful of our commitment to fitness.  I have designed it for the true beginner, or for anyone who wants gentle conditioning, but it is also a way to stay engaged with your health goals one one of those days when it seems easier to let all of your good plans go.  The cost is $10, or you can use your Sol-Y-Breath yoga card.

Now for the nutrition part of the fitness formula: please have a plan for eating over the week-end.  Here is a sample meal plan for Saturday or Sunday:


3-4 oz smoked wild salmon and 1 oz cream cheese topped with capers

Red cabbage and grated carrots

Stir-fried in 1T organic coconut oil


Tuna salad made with celery, home made mayo, 1t mustard, and chopped raw almonds.

Large green salad including chopped salad vegetables

Olive oil and vinegar dressing



Lemon Herb Grilled Chicken

Large Green salad with avocado dressing

Green Beans with garlic sauteed in butter.

Finally, here is a no equipment interval session to keep you in the groove:

Put on your favorite dance song, i recommend one that’s 4-5 minutes long, and do these exercises in a circuit.  20 seconds of work with 10 seconds of rest in between for the duration of the song:

Push Ups

Jumping Jacks

Mountain Climbers

Prisoner Squats.

Stay true to you goals and feel fantastic on Monday.

For personalized fitness plans e-mail me:

Especially if you eat well, and go to Cathy’s Fit Class.

Catherine’s Body Workshop

Yes! Catherine’s Body Workshop is coming. Saturday April 23rd at 3PM. there will be an orientation meeting for new students at the studio: 291 S. Washington St.

Then,  MUnknownonday through Friday at 5:30PM from April 25th through May 6th participants will follow my newly designed training program. In addition, my latest meal plans will be available, including a 2 week vegetarian plan.


This will be a test of a brand new format so I will be taking a maximum of 5 new clients. Current members are welcome to sign up at no extra charge, but you must commit to attending the 5:30PM session.

Leave me a message if you are interested, or email me:

This workshop is best for those who are currently training or exercising on a regular basis.

The goal of this 2 week workshop is to get you visible results fast.

Because this is the first time I have ever offered this workshop the fee for this brand new system will be only $29 for new clients.  It will never be this low again, and I am offering a money back guarantee.

My promise?  You will drop at least one size in 2 weeks.  This is the program I use to get ready for photo shoots and public appearances.  You can use it to get ready for your special events too.

This the beginning of a beautiful new relationship with your body.


The Total Body Challenge Begins Today

Away we go with another Total Body Challenge at Gordon Studio.

These challenges were instrumental in helping our clients lose over 1200 pounds and inches in 2015.  This year, we’re going for 1600 pounds and inches, from our in-person clients, and ten times that from readers of Sugar Freedom, and this blog.

When I opened Gordon Studio, and then when I published Sugar Freedom,  I knew that the programs worked for me, and for the clients I trained.  Now, after taking in-person students and on-line readers through the program, I have seen what you can accomplish with the right fat loss tools, especially if too much sugar, grain, and unproductive workouts have been holding you back.

Still, the program is not the solution for everyone who wants to get leaner and stronger, and look younger.

If you simply adore traditional cardio and aerobic training, and if giving up bread, sweets, and convenience food is not something you would even consider, then no, this is not the right challenge for you.

To those of you who are determined to get off of sugar and starch, and to train less with more purpose and the right level of intensity, I say, “Welcome aboard,” and I promise that you are in for an adventure in self discovery.

Mauri, who you see pictured above, lost 21 pounds in six weeks, which is now the record for the challenge.  The typical result is a 10 pound fat loss and 13 inches gone in 6 weeks.  The minimum result for participants who eliminate sugar and grains and adhere to a training schedule of 3 sessions a week has been six pounds of pure fat gone.

I simply can’t wait to see what everyone achieves this time around, and I want to share some important success techniques with all of my readers.

1. Plan your menu each morning.  Know what you are going to eat, and commit to it by making the proper preparations.   For example, my vegetables for today are going to be mixed baby greens, and sauteed carrot curls.  On the Sugar Freedom Plan vegetables make up the majority of the food you eat by volume, and it is essential that you do not skip them!  The green salads you eat provide raw nutrients and much needed fiber on this plan.  The vegetables cooked in pure fats: pastured butter, coconut oil, or olive oil for example, are filling, and satisfying too.  When my clients hit plateaus it is usually because they aren’t eating enough vegetables, or they aren’t drinking enough pure water.

2. Drink eight 8oz. glasses of water each day.  If you are not willing to do this, you need to re-examine your commitment to your goals.

3. Review your goals each day.  Why do you want to transform your body?  How would having your authentic ideal body elevate and enhance your live?  Think in terms of your happiness, and also in terms of you your vibrant health and energy allows you to serve you family, your community, and the world.  Transformation doesn’t just help you: it encourages and inspires everyone around you.

4. Get out your calendar and schedule your training sessions.  This goes for me and all of my clients: Those who don’t miss training sessions always get results.  Always.  Note: don’t push beyond great form when you train.  That prevents the extreme soreness and even injury that can stop you from training.

Now, I’m going to leave you with my menu for the day.  Remember, as a sugar addict and compulsive over eater in recovery, I have to keep it simple to stay abstinent and keep the 60 pounds of fat I lost 8 years ago off of my body.

Morning: Sugar Freedom Tonic, Water, Coffee, 2T organic heavy cream.

Breakfast: 2 Eggs, 2 Strips of Bacon, Sauteed carrot curls.  1/3 avocado. 2T salsa.

Lunch: Chicken Thigh, Large green salad with olive oil and vinegar dressing. Sauteed carrot curls.  1/3 avocado, 2T salsa.

Dinner: Repeat lunch.

Wishing you success and enjoyment all through the challenge,


Challenge Begins September 8th

I hope everyone enjoyed their Labor Day 3 Day Week-End.

On Tuesday, Sept 8th we begin our 6 Week Sugar Freedom/Little Black Dress Challenge.

Whatever your dreams are, it’s time to start taking them very, very seriously. Here at Gordon Studio, developing your fitness, and your figure, is all about living a life full of energy, significance, and fun too.

In addition, Craig Ballantyne’s 12 Week TT Transformation Contest is under way, and Gordon Studio clients are encouraged to enter by taking before pictures and measurements. Just request them the next time you come to class, and I’ll get them set up.

Here’s to a healthy happy Fall, and to reaching your goals in 2015.

Found! My Original 12 Week Transformation Photos

You can find the diet I used to get these results at:


One unique feature you’ll find at Gordon Studio is the “Wall of Fame.”  Unfortunately, my original before and afters aren’t up there because I lost them in  a capacitor meltdown a few years ago.

I’m posting these here because we do 12 week transformation challenges with our members, and they always like to see examples of what can be achieved in 12 weeks of smart training combined with a low sugar, whole food eating plan.  These pictures show my 14 pound weight loss in 2008, but I have been far surpassed by many of my students! Melinda F., and Jamie P. both lost over 20 pounds in 12 weeks, and they are not alone.

Starting August 1st. there will be a change in the Gordon Studio Schedule.  This will be posted on the Class Schedule page, but I wanted to post the new hours here as well.

Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday at 9:30AM

Monday through Thursday at 4:30PM

Monday through Friday at 5:15PM

Monday, Wednesday, and Thursday at 6PM

Now that Gordon Studio has produced more TT Transformation Champions than any other gym in the USA, and to cover rising costs of running the studio, our rates will be going up in September to $80 per month for unlimited classes.  The 8 class punch card will be $60, with 10% discount for Seniors and Students.  The single class rate will be $15.

There is more great news though: If you join before September 1st. you will get the lower rate of $60 per month and $50 for the 8 class card.  This rate stays the same as long as you remain a member of Gordon Studio.

Even better, I will be offering a Body Breakthrough Challenge starting Monday, September 14th.  For the low price of $59 you get a month of unlimited training, body fat assessment, Sugar Freedom Meal Plans for the entire month, membership in the Secret Facebook Group, a signed copy of “Keep the Change” Transform you body for Good, and a chance to win $250.00 cash for the first place figure transformation, $100.00 for second, and a free month of unlimited classes for 3rd. place.

See you in the studio!


Jamie Did It!


In a tough field of international competitors, Jamie takes 3rd. place in the Women over 40 division.  It is always the most competitive category, and I am so proud of her achievement.  It’s true, in just 90 minutes a week, you can transform your body. If you also commit to a sugar and processed food free eating strategy, it will happen even faster!  See for details.

Gordon Studio is accepting new students into the 5:15PM, and 6PM classes.

Congratulations Jamie!

Jamie Before
Jamie Before

Jamie side after
Jamie After


I’ll admit, getting through another candy coated holiday was an eye-opening experience. I mean, I expect to see Easter candy in the grocery and drug stores, but I was certainly surprised by the displays in the home improvement stores.

Thank goodness my students, readers, and I have found a way of eating that helps us navigate a sugar and pastry filled world.

I’d like to share Jamie’s before and afters with you, and ask you to vote in the 22nd. Turbulence Training Transformation contest. Back in 2007, before I made my own physical transformation, it was seeing Emily Johnson’s before and afters in the 1st. TT contest that made me believe I could make a permanent difference in the way I looked and felt.

I hope everyone who has read Sugar Freedom, gone through, the 3 Day Sugar Strike, and followed the meals plans has found relief from the sugar cravings that can drive appetite and overeating. I have found in so many cases that a smart training program can truly take your health, appearance, and feelings of well being to a whole new level.

This happened for Jamie when she began doing Turbulence Training at Gordon Studio, and I am including a link is this e-mail if you want to discover the program yourself.

I hope that you will read her success story at this link:
With Jamie’s selection as a finalist, Gordon Studio has had students in the finals of the international Turbulence Training Transformation Contests 21 times.  That makes us #1 in the US.  To current members: keep up the amazing work.  If you are curious about TT, e-mail me at, as we have openings in our 8AM, 5:15PM, and 6PM classes.

Great job Jamie

Be Beautiful Now


Last week I was moving files over from an old computer when I came across this photo.  My computer skills have always been a little haphazard, so I’m not really sure when this was taken. It was probably sometime in 2004, when my internet-influenced fat loss journey began.


January, 2004

Whatever you may think about the plethora of programs being sold on the internet,     

<a href=”” target=”_top”>Turbulence Training</a> urged me to do something very effective- take a before photo.  No bikini in this one!  I post the picture here because I want anyone reading this to know what the woman in that picture knew.

She thought she was already beautiful.

Recently my sister told me about a conversation she had years ago with our Mom.  My sister was feeling distressed over her own looks and Mom told her to be beautiful now.  She said that my sister should choose her clothes, make up, and hairstyle based on what would make her feel the most beautiful in that moment, no matter what she happened to weigh.

I can say that she has always followed that advice, and as a result I have always found my sister lovely to look at, and from the reaction of people around her she brings beauty with her wherever she goes.  Of course now that I think of it, the way she treats people, with kindness and genuine interest, certainly gives the impression she makes a special glow.

Be Beautiful Now

 The process of physical transformation is full of paradoxes like this one:  In order to change profoundly, and get all the way to your goal, you must accept yourself completely in this moment.

As I come closer and closer to the weight, size, and measurements I have chosen for my goal, have to become even more accepting of myself in order to avoid going completely nuts!  My rational mind thinks that with all of the skills and experience I’ve earned over the past seven years the the push to the finish line should get easier and easier.

I know how to eat, how to lift, how to move, and even how to think.  Indeed those processes do get easier.

Go ahead and learn the skills that lead to physical transformation.  They do work and they will serve you well, but they may not take you all the way to your goal if your greatest challenges are emotional.

If I have to name the greatest emotional obstacle to losing weight for good- it is fear: the fear that when you arrive at your chosen destination the imagined reward won’t be enough.

That perfect measurements won’t equal universal acceptance.  I think the essential purpose of this blog has been to help me figure out what in the world I’ve really been after all these years, and I thought I found it in the concept of perfect physical well being, something I thought I could go out and create for myself.


As  I get nearer to that place physically, it becomes abundantly clear that it’s never been about how I look.  It’s about how I feel, and about what I do.  I encourage you to ask yourself this question,


“What do I want to do that is being limited by the the state of my appearance, or by my thoughts about my appearance?”


The great challenge is then to go start doing those very things.  I accepted that challenge in July of 2012 when I signed a two year lease on the building that would become Gordon Studio.  My students accept that challenge whenever they step into one of my    Turbulence Training  classes.

Yesterday afternoon, we did the finisher that my colleague and friend Mike Whitfield taught to the trainers at the 2013 Turbulence Training Summit.  

My students had never seen some of the exercises before, and I was so proud of their trust and willingness when they did exercises like the SCREACH, and the Mountain Climber/Burpee combination.

Back to the Woman in the Picture

Even in those days, if I did my hair, put on my makeup (which I happen to enjoy doing), and wore my favorite color, I felt beautiful.  That was, and is, my secret.


So as I step onto the fast track toward releasing Sugar Freedom, I have two vital jobs.  I have to feel the fear of success and let it pass thorough me without blocking it with food, and I must go ahead and choose to be beautiful now.


Go ahead and try it.  You don’t have to tell anyone what you’re up to, and it may end up being your secret too.