Getting Results on the Sugar Freedom Challenge

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

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,


Six Week Challenge Case Study


For six weeks starting in May, four Gordon Studio Members took the Six Week Sugar Freedom Challenge and ran with it. Even though I seem to remember one member telling me, “I’m not giving up sugar” when she first joined, her change of heart led to a change of figure.

They all eliminated sugar, grains, and processed vegetable oils from their diets, and they did resistance and interval training three to four times a week. They could choose to eat a bonus meal every week that contained their favorite foods, as long as these weren’t trigger foods. (Trigger foods are defined as any food that you can’t eat in a standard serving without triggering cravings and overeating.) In addition, all four members had their weight and measurements recorded, and they all took before and after photos.

Although they did experience some uncomfortable symptoms of withdrawal from sugar and grains, all of them lost significant amounts of body fat, and several inches overall. I’ll begin with Paulann’s results, as she was a challenge alumni who had already lost 10 pounds in the first 6 Week Challenge that Gordon Studio ran at the end of 2014. Paulann lost another 6 pounds in six weeks, but the best part in my opinion as her trainer and coach is the fact that she lowered her waist to hip ratio to .8. This is regarded as a healthy waist to hip ratio, and it is an excellent indicator of good overall health.

The three other participants were doing the Sugar Freedom Challenge for the first time, and I was delighted and gratified by their efforts. Cherie lost 11.6 pounds and 12 inches, Whitley lost 11.2 pounds and 14 inches, and Candy lost 13 pounds and 10 inches.

Although the case study sample was small, every participant lose a least a pound a week, and three of them lost almost 2 pounds a week, which is considered an ideal amount when it comes to losing fat while preserving lean muscle. Even better is the fact that they all improved their strength, balance, flexibility, and energy for daily living.

As a Certified Turbulence Trainer and ACE certified nutrition specialist, I believed that I had the tools to help my clients lose fat and transform their bodies, but nothing compares to the thrill of seeing the combination of Sugar Freedom and Turbulence Training get results live in the studio.

Most of all, I am so grateful to all of the Gordon Studio members and Sugar Freedom readers who have the dedication and willingness to try new and challenging fitness techniques. It is so worth it.

What Is The Best Way To Eat For Weight Loss?

Hello Gordon Studio Students and Fans, Here is post I wrote to help introduce Sugar Freedom- The Eating Plan that goes hand in hand with Turbulence Training for great results.

The best way to eat for weight loss is to discover the foods that nourish and satisfy you without over-stimulating your appetite.  This allows you to eat until you’re comfortably full, and then get on with your life.

 This begs the question: If it really is that simple, why is it so hard?

 My answer is that there is a part of you, Freud called it the “id,” Carl Sagan described it as the primitive brain, and I think of it as my “Inner Teenager,” that wants you to forget everything you know about health, balance, and moderation so that it can have whatever it wants.

So not only do we have to discover the most satisfying foods, we have to develop a strategy to help us keep eating them.

 Once we find the foods that serve our needs, we have to go a step further  and find ways to manage our eating behavior.  The primary basis of successful long term fat loss is a change in eating habits.  You must identify the eating habits that are making and keeping you fat, and then you need to change them.

 Here is an example of an eating habit that has to change for permanent fat loss to take hold:

 Many of the women I know who struggle with too much body fat eat a surprisingly small amount of food: especially by volume.

 Their taste buds and appetites seem to be turned off by simple unprocessed foods.  The idea of a spinach omelet, or even a dish of Greek yogurt with some fruit is so unappetizing to them that they skip breakfast completely, leaving them so hungry that they grab a donut in the office at 11AM, or they buy and devour a scone at Starbucks.

 Then, the “Hit” they get from the sugary treat drives them to snack all day long.   Even worse, the manufactured yumminess of the commercially prepared snack ruins their appetite for simple, home-made food.   (Believe me, I’ve been there.  Once I would get the “Kick” from the sugar buzz, I would end up chasing that feeling by snacking until bedtime.)

 Do you know any busy moms who feed their kids but forget to eat breakfast themselves?

  I sure do, and when you’re out working, or volunteering, or running errands, highly processed nutrient-poor foods seem to be everywhere.  Case in point: what are candy bars doing at the checkout counter at the hardware store?  Making money for the company that owns the store that’s what.

 So to busy people everywhere I say:

 Eat a nutrient dense breakfast of whole foods with plenty of healthy fat, moderate protein, and lots of fiber.  (And yes, that fiber can come from vegetables- it does not have to come from bread and cereal.)

 I know, I can hear you now: “That sounds like boring food that is hard work to prepare.”

 Maybe it is at first, but if you prepare and eat real food on a regular basis, your taste buds will re-awaken, your energy will increase, and your waistline will shrink because real food tends to be filling and anti-inflammatory.

So what if you do start to shop for and prepare your own real  food on a regular basis?  What happens when you start to lose weight, you get bored with your eating routine, and you start to hunt for scones again?

You need a written record of your fat loss strategy that you can turn to, in order to help you get your head on straight again.

In my work here at Gordon studio, I have found that my students who come to train, dance, and transform their bodies have a wealth of knowledge about what works for them in terms of eating for fat loss: but they stop using that knowledge!

They acquire what I call: Fat Loss Amnesia.

So I’m going to make a simple request to help you build your own fat loss strategy.

 For just three days: Yes just three days, I’m going to ask you to make and eat breakfast at home, and write down what you made.

 This is powerful in two ways:  Studies show that people who write down what they eat lose twice as much weight as those who don’t, and you will have the beginning of your own “Real Food Strategy for Fat Loss.”
 I want you to get the benefits of being in charge of what you eat, especially for your first meal of the day.

 Here’s what I had this morning:

2 eggs from a friend’s hens

2 slices of uncured local bacon

Spinach sauteed in coconut oil with mushrooms.

 It’s noon, and I’m still feeling satisfied and energized.

You could also have 1 cup of strawberries with 1 cup of greek yogurt and 1 oz chopped raw almonds.  Add cinnamon and a few drops of stevia if the yogurt is too tart.

 So prepare your own real food breakfast for three days, write down what you made, and see if you notice a difference in how you feel.  My guess is that you will have more energy and fewer cravings throughout the day: leading to a looser waistband at the end of just three days.

If you want a complete strategy to get rid of sugar cravings in three days, I have written Sugar Freedom: a complete program that shows you exactly what I ate to lose more than 60 pounds, and keep them off for 5 years and counting.

 You can get Sugar Freedom for 30% off for a limited time by clicking on this link:

 Catherine Gordon A.C.E., was named the  Certified Turbulence Trainer of the Year for her work with her students at Gordon Studio in Sonora, CA.  She is a member of the National Weight Control Registry and the author of The Sugar Freedom Diet.

Her website is

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.


Get Your Best Body Ever- After 40!


Default Bodyweight 400

 This is a class favorite at Gordon Studio:

Warm Up:
Y-Squat- 10
Arm Crosses-10 per side
Prisoner Lunge-8 per side
Mountain Climber- 10 per side
Leg Swing- 10 per side

Rest 30 seconds

400 Challenge:

25 Jumping Jacks
25 Body Weight Squats
25 Push Ups
25 Total Body Extensions

Rest one minute and repeat 3 times for a total of four rounds (400 reps total).

We got through it quickly enough on Friday that I added this incredibly simple finisher:
Cross Body Mountain Climbers: 20 Seconds on, 10 Seconds off for 4 rounds.

Total Body Stretch

With modifications this can be done by all fitness levels, and they feel incredibly empowered afterward.

With TT we can actually get our students to astonish themselves with their own abilities, and when they feel great, junk food loses a lot of its appeal.

One of my students, Dody, reached her goal weight of 145 pounds last week- down from 161. She said that she wasn’t really aware that it was happening. She knew her pants were looser- a lot looser, but that the 145 on the scale was a shock.

Been there! When I got back to 122 after Vegas I was thinking, “How did that happen?”

Simple- total commitment to Sugar Freedom, no cardio except walking, and TT.


After I met with my fitness colleagues in Las Vegas, I made a promise to myself that I would eat, train, and teach in a way that I know to be consistent with the best current science, and with my experience, and that of the most successful trainers and coaches I can study.


I realized that I had to answer and act on this question once and for all:


Do you want to teach what is popular, or do you want to teach what works?

Two years ago, I made a choice to teach what was popular, and I lost the body of my dreams when I slowly but surely re-gained 15 pounds over the course of the following year.


I don’t think it’s coincidence that I finally got my weight back to  goal range after I took a break from the cardio/aerobic classes I had been teaching.


My transformation happened after age 40, and what I have to accept once and for all is that, for someone like me who is susceptible to obesity, steady state, moderate intensity cardio sessions that last an hour or more are simply not an option if I want to maintain my fat loss.


The proof is right in front of me when I see my Turbulence Training students get leaner, stronger, and dare I say it, great looking bodies week by week.


Women in their teens, twenties, and early thirties may be able to cut their calories to the bone and do as much cardio as they want, but I have to accept that at almost age 50, I can’t.  


So with patience, good technique, and the right eating strategy for your body, you a can get to your goal weight after 40 and beyond.  And the best news is that that you can enjoy the journey.


Speaking of 50, my friend and colleague Shawna is that age, and her challenge burpee program is right in line with what I know to be effective:  You can check out her training program by clicking the blue link underneath Shawna’s picture:

Shawna at 50: Amazing!


Get a Great Body and Win Cash!

To get the Turbulence Training Program That Has Worked Wonders at Gordon Studio:

Click Here!

 Congratulations to Kim, Peggy, Melinda, Sandra, and Melanie.


We are five for five when it comes to Gordon Studio clients who have completed a 12 week transformation and made it into the finals of this worldwide contest.


Everyone has lost multiple inches in all the right places, and Kim placed second in the 17th contest by doing three TT Training sessions a week the were just 30 minutes long!


A Friendly Competition

There is only one Certified Turbulence Trainer that I know of who has had more clients make the finals, and that’s Mike Whitfield with six.


What do you say Gordon Studio members and blog followers, shall we try to make it 7,8, or more finalists for Gordon Studio?  Wow, I would love that, because there is nothing more gratifying than sharing the incredible feeling of vitality and accomplishment you get from completing a Turbulence Training Transformation Contest..

Here are the rules for the current contest:

Rules of the 18th
Turbulence Training
Transformation Contest 


1) The 18th Turbulence Training 12-Week Transformation Contest runs from Sunday, September 1st to Monday, December 9th, 2013.

  • All transformations must be submitted before midnight, EST, on Monday, December 9th, 2013, at midnight EST.
  • The last day to enter if you want to complete a full 12-week Transformation is Monday, September 16th, 2013.
  • You can still enter AFTER that date, but you won’t be able to complete a full 12 weeks, as you must submit your entry no later than Monday, December 9th, 2013, at midnight EST

2) To enter the TT Transformation Contests:

  • You must use Turbulence Training or 24-7 Fat Loss workouts to achieve your results.
  • You must provide “Before and After” photos via email or by posting them in the Transformation Forum of the Turbulence Training Membership Website.
  • All entries for the 12-week Transformation Contest must be received before Midnight, EST, Monday, December 9th, 2013.

NOTE: If you have placed in the top three of any previous Turbulence Training Transformation Contests then you are no longer eligible to enter the 18th Turbulence Training Transformation Contest. You may only win a prize once.



3) You must take “Before” photos on Day 1 and “After” photos on Day 84.

  • All photos must include your face and a newspaper from the current date in order for your transformation to be entered into the contest. There are NO exceptions.
  • To view a sample of proper photo documentation, visit this link:

Watch “How to Take Your Transformation Contest Photos”



4) Photos can be posted in the Turbulence Training Membership Website Transformation Forum or can be entered by email (see details below).

  • It is highly recommended – for your success – to post your photos, workouts, and nutrition in a training journal in the Turbulence Training Membership forum.
  • Recording your photos, workouts, and nutrition will dramatically increase your chances of losing fat and reaching your goals because of the power of social support found on the forums.

5) In addition to providing Before &amp; After photos, each contestant must write a 300 word essay on their before and after success story. This can be posted on the forum or sent by email.

6) The Transformation Contest will be judged by Craig Ballantyne and voting may be opened to the public.

  • By entering this Contest, each winner of a contest prize consents to the use of his/her name, and/or photograph in any publicity carried out by the Contest Sponsor and its advertising and promotional agencies without further notice or compensation.

7) Prizes are as follows:

  • For the 12-Week Transformation Contest there will be four categories:
    • Men Under 40
    • Men Over 40
    • Women Under 40
    • Women Over 40
  • Each category will reward the following prizes.
    • 1st Place Grand Prize – $1000 plus a 3-Year Platinum TT Membership
    • 2nd Place – $500 plus a 2-Year Platinum TT Membership
    • 3rd Place – $250 plus a 1-Year Platinum TT Membership

8) The Contest Sponsor’s rulings are final and without appeal in all matters related to this Contest and the awarding of the Prizes. The Contest is subject to all applicable federal, provincial and municipal laws and regulations.

9) Entering by Email

  • To enter photos by email, send to:Support (AT)
  • All entries become the property of the Contest Sponsor and will not be returned.
  • Contest Sponsor, its advertising and promotion agencies assume no responsibility for lost, stolen, delayed, damaged, illegible, incomplete, postage-due, garbled or misdirected entries or entries that have been submitted through illicit means, or do not conform to or satisfy the Contest Rules or for any problems or technical malfunction of any telephone network or lines, computer on-line systems, servers, access providers, computer equipment, software, failure of any entry to be received or traffic congestion on the internet or at any website, or any combination thereof including any injury or damage to an entrant’s or any other person’s computer related to or resulting from playing or downloading any material in the contest.

    If you enter, you may be added to the Turbulence Training email marketing list.

10) The Contest Sponsor reserves the right, in its sole discretion, to modify, cancel or suspend this Contest should an external circumstances arise which are beyond the reasonable control of the Contest Sponsor. The Contest Sponsor is not responsible for any errors or omissions in printing or advertising this Contest.

The Contest Sponsor collects your personal information for the purposes of registration, program evaluation and to keep you informed about The Challenge. The Contest Sponsor may, if consent was given during registration, also contact you from time to time with information about other ways you can lose weight.

The Contest Sponsor will not share any personal data about entrants with any

other party. The personal data collected for this Contest will not be used for any other purposes unless entrants provide explicit permission as indicated on the entry form. For more information about our privacy practices or to obtain a copy of our Privacy Policy,

By entering this Contest, entrants agree to release and hold harmless the Contest Sponsor and their respective employees, officers, directors, agents, representatives, successors, assigns, advertising and promotional agencies from any liability for any loss or damage of any kind to the entrant or any other person in connection with this Contest or participation in any Contest related activities, including but not limited the taking of a urine test or, if declared a winner, the use or misuse of a prize or any portion of a prize including personal injury, death or property damage.

This Contest will run in accordance with these Contest Rules, subject to amendment by the Contest Sponsor. Contest Sponsor reserves the right to cancel, amend, modify or terminate this Contest or the Rules at any time in its sole discretion and without notice.

Entrants must comply with these rules, and will be deemed to have received and understood the rules if they participate in the Contest.


Craig Ballantyne, CTT

Certified Turbulence Trainer



I want to encourage all of my local TT students to participate.  If you can’t make it in to Gordon Studio, and even if you can and you want to to Turbulence Training at home or at your local gym, here is my affiliate link to buy the TT program, and get all of the training sessions that I used to help my students- and many many more:



        Click Here!


When it comes to transforming your body, nothing beats TT, plus, you could win 250, 500, or even 1000 dollars in the 18th Transformation Contest.  Sandra, Kim, and Melinda did it, and you can too.


One more detail: If you take your pictures by September 3rd, you will complete your 12 week transformation before Thanksgiving.  (Just a friendly reminder for those of you in the U.S.)


I will be entering the contest myself, even though I’m not eligible to win a prize, in order to test the effectiveness of my new “Sugar Freedom Diet”- “No , Sugar, no Grains, No Cravings”  is my motto.


Let’s make this the best contest ever, for heath, energy, a great body, and fun!


There is Still Time to Vote!

Congratulations Kim and Peggy for being named finalists in the Women Over 40 category of the 17th TT Transformation Contest!


Here is the link to vote for the contestant that you think had the most impressive transformation.  You may think I’m saying this because I am their coach, but I have a tough time deciding between Kim and Peggy.  They both got beautiful results.


As a result of their success, I am walking on a cloud today.  It seems like there is a drumbeat of bad news in the media regarding the difficulties of losing weight and keeping it off.  It gives me so much happiness whenever I can share a story of someone who is doing just that and enjoying it: even loving it!


In less than a year since Gordon Studio opened as a new space for Turbulence Training and Zumba, five of our students have made the finals in TT contests, and all of them are continuing to improve their physiques, energy, and fitness skills.


I want to share two essential strategies  that the latest finalists have in common.


First: They each chose an eating strategy and stuck to it.  Kim followed a plan that addressed her unique nutritional needs, and Peggy attended Weight Watchers meetings.  Their diets were different, but they both got results because they were able to stick to them.


Second:  They did Turbulence Training at Gordon Studio, and at home, consistently for 12 weeks.  They trained safe, had fun, and stuck with their programs.


One more thing, they were so supportive of everyone else in class.  These busy career women were always happy to take time to explain what they were doing, and offer encouragement. They are already having a positive influence on their friends, family members, and the people they interact with at work and in the community.  This willingness to offer support and encouragement is one of the most important keys to making their fat loss transformations permanent.


I can’t wait to see where their new skills and wisdom take them next.


If you would like to purchase Turbulence Training to make your own transformation happen, Click Here to follow my affiliate link.


Voting closes Thursday evening.  Good luck Kim and Peggy! (Contestants #4 and #7) at this link:

Train More, Weigh More?

Could Your Super-Sized Workout Be Making You Heavier?

Here is a recent headline from the Los Angeles Times:

We’re exercising more but still fighting obesity, study shows

Residents of two-thirds of the nation’s counties have become more physically active, but obesity rates have climbed, researchers concluded.

The explanation for this apparent paradox is that, even with more exercise, we’re still eating more than we burn, so weight loss isn’t happening.
Ahh yes, my favorite, the calories in, calories out argument.  Let’s just suppose that calorie balance is the key to weight loss, and take a closer look at what might be going on here.
Lucky for me, an article in the May 2013 issue of IDEA Fitness Journal reported on a study that was conducted by researchers at The University of Alabama at Birmingham.  They recruited 72 women ages 60-74 and put them in three groups.  On group did one session of cardiovascular training (40 minute duration) and one resistance training session per week, one group did 2 cardio and 2 resistance sessions, and one group did 3 and 3.
The results that the women in the study received were in line with what I’ve observed in my own transformation, and in the results that we get at Gordon Studio.
The group that did one cardio and one resistance  session per week increased their non-exercise activity thermogenesis  by 68 calories per day overall.  The 2 and 2 group did even better: their total energy expenditure, activity related energy expenditure, (this was not increased in the 1:1 or the 3:3 group), and their non-exercise energy expenditure increased by 200 calories/day.
Here comes the most important result of the study in my opinion:
The group of women that did three 40 minute cardio sessions plus three resistance training sessions decreased their non-activity energy expenditure by 150 kcal per day.
They trained more, but they burned fewer calories overall.
These results are in line with what happened to me after I earned my ACE certification, got my Zumba license, and started training clients and teaching classes:
The increase I experienced in physical stress and hunger helped me re-gain 15 pounds in the two years after I started my fitness business.
In real numbers my weight went from 118 to 133.  I managed to make some changes and stop my re-gain just short of becoming officially overweight again.
In my experience, and from my observations, I’m beginning to conclude that those of us who have been significantly overweight or obese may have to keep a sharp eye on how we respond to training and exercise.  By refocusing my efforts on metabolic resistance training, reducing my cardio load, and keeping an eye on whether my appetite is well managed, I’ve been able to take the weight back off.
I’ve also seen that my students who bring the intensity to our 30 minute Turbulence Training classes, follow their food plans, and don’t add a lot of extra training and cardio sessions, get the best and most visible results.
This can represent a dilemma for me as a business owner and trainer:  more sessions used by more students equals more revenue.  Today, with the success of programs like Insanity and P90X, it seems like the harder and longer you work your students, the more popular and on trend you will be.
Back in January I made a resolution that I would have to let go of what is popular, and go back to what works.
If you love to train and do lots of cardio- and your weight and body fat percentages are right where you want them to be- please keep doing what you love and what works!
If you are going to the gym or training at home, finding yourself hungry all the time, and you’re not getting the results and the body you want, why not dial up the intensity of your training, dial down the frequency and duration, and see if your results improve?

The TT Transformation Deadline Approaches.

A Deadline is A Powerful Fat Loss Tool.

It’s two weeks and five days until the end of the 17th Turbulence Training Transformation Contest.  I’m not eligible for a prize, as I’ve won the contest before, but I like to join them because they focus my intentions by giving me a clear goal and a deadline.

Ah yes, a deadline can be a powerful tool for change when it comes to fat loss.  The conventional wisdom is that permanent weight loss requires a lifestyle change, and I do agree with that point of view.  However, I believe that it is success that motivates us to stick to a new lifestyle.

In order to achieve exciting, visible, motivating success we need to concentrate our best efforts on our goals, and nothing concentrates effort quite like a deadline.  Believe me, it’s a lot easier to walk away from random snack foods when you know you’ve got to stand in front of a camera in your swimsuit in two weeks.  I can hear the naysayers now claiming that you’ll just go back to your old way of eating after the deadline, but will you?

I have discovered that the opposite is true.  Yes, I admit that I have bounced back up because I have indulged after deadlines, but the tools and strategies that I learned during the transformation contests  always brought me back to my best behavior.

I need to repeat this idea, because it is so essential for your success:  The behaviors, strategies, and tactics that you learn on the way to your fat loss deadline are the very behaviors that will keep you leaner for life!

If you put on weight during a vacation or the holidays, you will know what you have to do to get on track.  How do I know?  It’s been five years since my original transformation, and I’m still following my TT lifestyle.  Even better, I now have clients who have transformed, and who continue to make progress after their contest deadline is over.

Here are some specifics when it comes to what those fat loss behaviors are:

1.  Choose and follow a fitness plan.  I know, I know, plenty of research shows that diet is the more powerful driver of weight loss, but I believe that effective exercise is the foundation of  figure transformation.  The right amount of exercise at the proper intensity will make you feel fantastic, and it will help you manage your appetite, so that you can follow a good eating plan for fat loss.

2.  Choose and follow an eating strategy.  Start with whole, fresh, nourishing food, and be honest about what foods give you energy and satisfaction without triggering overeating.  I continue to be surprised at the variety of strategies that my students have used to succeed.  What they have in common is that they pick a plan that works for them, and they stick to it.  Amazing!  For me, success comes when I eat planned meals sitting down, and those meals are free of sugar, grains, and processed vegetable oils.  You may not need to eliminate sugar, but it’s given me freedom from food obsession, so I can live the life I choose.

3.  Choose your allies.  Get support from people who want vibrant health as well.  I’m so fortunate to have a place to teach and train, because I’m constantly surrounded by people who want to feel- and look- great.

Finally, and it bears repeating, you need to know why you want the energy and vitality that comes from being in your best shape ever.  What is that you want to do in life that is worth training for?

So good luck, whether you’re in the transformation contest or not, and I wish you all of the positive motivation of a deadline.