Becky is an Ohio native who moved to Chicago 6 years ago. She has always been passionate about health and wellness. She graduated from Ohio University with a degree in Exercise Physiology and Pre-Physical Therapy. After college she worked in the corporate world for several years, but is now back doing what she loves! She received her NASM Personal Training Certification last year and is now spending most of her time helping others achieve their fitness goals with one-on-one personal training. As well, Becky most recently partnered with Kelly Schmidt, RD, LDN on some health programs/bootcamps. Stay tuned.
What inspired you want to do Paleo?
I was in a rut and bored with my eating habits. I had also read a lot of literature on this diet and many positive reviews, and thought it was worth trying first-hand. So I put myself on Kelly’s Paleo Infused Nutrition Pledge food challenge to see if I could stick the program for 4 weeks; I did! I also wanted to speak intelligently about intuitive nutrition and more easily empathize with my clients who were participating in other food challenges, diets or cleanses.
What is your health goal/objective?
I want to improve digestion and nutrient absorption, as I now know good digestion equals good health. I have always been a healthy eater, but never really noticed my energy levels or regularity being where they should be. I didn’t feel my healthy eating efforts were paying off either. I am always interested in learning more about nutrition and food labels. Lastly, I wanted to drop those 5 lbs clinging to my thighs, which have fallen off eating a real food diet. Success!
What was the most challenging thing in following a paleo diet? How did you overcome this challenge; if you did?
At first, eliminating dairy was the biggest challenge for me. I had been eating greek yogurt, cheese and ice cream regularly for the past few years. First and foremost, I got rid of all the dairy products in my fridge. This helped me stay on track and avoid any temptations. I also did some research and came up with some “dairy alternatives”. I am now borderline obsessed with coconut milk and can’t image going back to drinking regular milk. I also was able to make an amazing non-dairy cheesecake that left me just as satisfied as if I were eating the real thing. My second biggest challenge was not drinking beer. I am an avid beer drinker and love hoppy, craft beers. I was able to completely eliminate beer for the entire month. However, there are some tasty gluten free beer options that I have recently discovered. They don’t leave you feeling as bloated and full. For you Chicagoans-Binny’s, Trader Joe’s and Whole Foods as well as lots of restaurants have a decent gluten free selection.
What was your overall impression of the diet? Do you still follow it?
I honestly loved the diet. I learned a ton about nutrition and how misleading some food labels can be. I also felt better (increased energy, better digestion and healthy skin). Experimenting with all the different recipes was also really fun. If anyone needs any recipes-I have a ton I’ve collected over the past few months. www.paleoomg.com is also an awesome resource for great recipes and fun commentary.
Since completing the challenge, my motto has been “80/20”. I try and stick with it 80% of the time and I give myself a little wiggle room with the other 20%. For example, I was just home for Christmas and there was NO WAY I was not going to have JUST ONE piece of my mom’s homemade fudge. I also think the “80/20” mindset is very healthy. You don’t feel totally defeated if you cheat one day…so be it, just get yourself back on track!
What changes did you see after doing one of Kelly’s Paleo Infused Nutrition Pledges?
As I mentioned above, my digestion, energy and skin were better than before. I also slept better. And, lost those stubborn 5 lbs on my thighs. My awareness of all the crappy food options out there is also worth noting. Every time I go to the store or go out to eat I find myself really scrutinizing the labels and menus. I deem this as a really positive thing and really believe “you are what you eat”.
What advice would you tell someone considering the Pledge?
I would highly recommend the pledge. Go into the pledge and challenge yourself to stick to it 100% for the 4 weeks. Thereafter, you can decide if it’s right for you. I would also recommend anyone considering the pledge to plan ahead. Researching recipes and literature surrounding the premise of the pledge ahead of time will really help you mentally prepare for what lies ahead, ultimately leading to a successful pledge.
What were/are your favorite snacks and meals?
I loved making sweet potato fries. Super cheap and easy. I also made egg “muffins” as a fun breakfast alternative (basically eggs with whatever fixings you want, baked in muffin tins). Homemade nut butter was also a god send. I would eat this along with carrots, celery or an apple for a snack. Beware though-it’s addicting! I also made a lot of smoothies for lunch with fresh fruit and veggies. Adding an avocado to the smoothies gives it an awesome creamy flavor. Spaghetti squash with homemade marinara and chicken sausage, butternut squash with bacon and onions…the list goes on and on.
Any other comments?
Just try it! You have nothing to lose….besides 10 lbs, better sleep and better skin!
Becky Schlageter is an excellent Certified Personal Trainer and is passionate about her client’s success. Email Becky at [email protected] if you are in the Chicago area and want some fitness coaching.