PaleOMG Uncensored Real Food. Real Life. Real Simple. Fri, 23 Feb 2018 13:43:09 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Juli Bauer is the creator of where she shares her recipes, thoughts, fashion, workouts, travel and really whatever the hell else she wants to. Wait. Am I suppose to talk in the third person in this podcast description? That's weird.<br /> <br /> I'm not here to give you the science behind Paleo or a history lesson. That's boring. Go somewhere else for that. I'm literally here to talk about whatever pops into my mind. Curse words and all. My French bulldog tends to snore in episodes, I'm easily distracted and completely unqualified to have my own podcast, but hey, that's the world we live in. So let's chat about stuff while I snack and slurp on some food. Keeping it professional, just for you guys! PaleOMG Uncensored yes PaleOMG Uncensored (PaleOMG Uncensored) Juli Bauer Says It All PaleOMG Uncensored Listener Questions – Episode 72: PaleOMG Uncensored Podcast Sat, 17 Feb 2018 14:42:20 +0000 10 Today on the podcast, I’m answering your questions that you left for me on instagram!! If I missed your question, feel free to leave it on and I’ll answer it there ASAP! And don’t forget to snag a pair […] Today on the podcast, I’m answering your questions that you left for me on instagram!! If I missed your question, feel free to leave it on and I’ll answer it there ASAP! And don’t forget to snag a pair of my newest PaleOMG leggings!


Support the podcast by clicking the Subscribe button on iTunes and please a review only if you love the podcast! There is enough negativity in this world, don’t spread more. I love hearing about what YOU want me to talk about so feel free to leave on comment here or on social media with topics you’d like me to cover! And don’t forget, some posts have affiliate links which I may be compensated from. This compensation helps with keeping this blog and up and running! Thank you so much for your support, you guys are amazing!


Episode 72 Transcription Coming Soon!

Today on the podcast, I’m answering your questions that you left for me on instagram!! If I missed your question, feel free to leave it on and I’ll answer it there ASAP! And don’t forget to snag a pair […] Today on the podcast, I’m answering your questions that you left for me on instagram!! If I missed your question, feel free to leave it on and I’ll answer it there ASAP! And don’t forget to snag a pair […] PaleOMG Uncensored yes 1:29:37
Dealing w/ Hormone Imbalances From Exercise – Episode 71: PaleOMG Uncensored Podcast Sat, 10 Feb 2018 14:15:08 +0000 5 Earlier on the week on instagram, I mentioned how I dealt with hormone issues from overexercising and I had a handful of people ask if I could elaborate on that more. So I’m breaking down the issues I ran into […] Earlier on the week on instagram, I mentioned how I dealt with hormone issues from overexercising and I had a handful of people ask if I could elaborate on that more. So I’m breaking down the issues I ran into when I was overexercising, undereating, and putting my body through constant stress by hating myself. It’s amazing what stress can do to the body if you aren’t paying attention. I’m breaking down how I fixed those issues and healed my body.


Big thank you to this week’s sponsor!

Aaptiv produces audio-based workouts created by certified personal trainers available through a mobile app. They carefully select a group of certified personal trainers that guide you through every workout. And one of the coolest parts about Aaptiv is that you can do the workouts anywhere. Whether you like to workout at the gym, at home, outside, or when you’re traveling—Aaptiv is ready to go along with you! All you have to do is plug in your headphones! It’s like having a personal trainer in your pocket. And they have different workouts for everyone! Whether you’re interested in running, strength training, cycling, stair climbing, yoga, or even meditation, Aaptiv has a workout for you. And with more than 2,500 workouts available on the platform and 30+ new classes added each week, there’s always a new workout to try! Aaptiv subscriptions start at $14.99 billed monthly, or $99.99 for an annual membership. But right now a limited time, new members get 50% off an annual membership, which is just $49.99 for the whole year of unlimited workouts. Click here to get this amazing discount!


Episode 71 Transcription Coming Soon!

Earlier on the week on instagram, I mentioned how I dealt with hormone issues from overexercising and I had a handful of people ask if I could elaborate on that more. So I’m breaking down the issues I ran into […] Earlier on the week on instagram, I mentioned how I dealt with hormone issues from overexercising and I had a handful of people ask if I could elaborate on that more. So I’m breaking down the issues I ran into […] PaleOMG Uncensored yes 56:54
Favorite Things – Episode 70: PaleOMG Uncensored Podcast Sat, 03 Feb 2018 14:01:36 +0000 9 Today on the podcast, I’m talking about last weeks gym holiday party, reorganizing my life, a Bachelor recap then all the things I’m loving lately like retin-a, mint chocolate brownie larabar, Rose Pricks podcast, and glute workouts! ____________ Big thank […] Today on the podcast, I’m talking about last weeks gym holiday party, reorganizing my life, a Bachelor recap then all the things I’m loving lately like retin-a, mint chocolate brownie larabar, Rose Pricks podcast, and glute workouts!


Big thank you to this week’s sponsors!

Sun Basket delivers organic, sustainable ingredients and delicious recipes weekly to your doorstep! They use organic produce, responsibly raised meats, sustainably sourced fish, and organic, pasture-raised eggs in all of their recipes. And you can pick from Paleo, Lean & Clean, Gluten-Free, Vegan and more! And they have about 18 different recipes to choose from each week! Best of all, the delicious easy recipes are ready in about 30 minutes. With Sunbasket, you have complete flexibility. You can cancel anytime, skip anytime and you can choose any meal plan you want! If you’re ready to stick with healthy meals throughout the week and really stick with your resolutions this year, you can now try Sun Basket for $35 off your first order! Click here to grab this offer before it’s gone!

Aaptiv produces audio-based workouts created by certified personal trainers available through a mobile app. They carefully select a group of certified personal trainers that guide you through every workout. And one of the coolest parts about Aaptiv is that you can do the workouts anywhere. Whether you like to workout at the gym, at home, outside, or when you’re traveling—Aaptiv is ready to go along with you! All you have to do is plug in your headphones! It’s like having a personal trainer in your pocket. And they have different workouts for everyone! Whether you’re interested in running, strength training, cycling, stair climbing, yoga, or even meditation, Aaptiv has a workout for you. And with more than 2,500 workouts available on the platform and 30+ new classes added each week, there’s always a new workout to try! Aaptiv subscriptions start at $14.99 billed monthly, or $99.99 for an annual membership. But right now a limited time, new members get 50% off an annual membership, which is just $49.99 for the whole year of unlimited workouts. Click here to get this amazing discount!


Episode 70 Transcription Coming Soon!

Today on the podcast, I’m talking about last weeks gym holiday party, reorganizing my life, a Bachelor recap then all the things I’m loving lately like retin-a, mint chocolate brownie larabar, Rose Pricks podcast, and glute workouts! Today on the podcast, I’m talking about last weeks gym holiday party, reorganizing my life, a Bachelor recap then all the things I’m loving lately like retin-a, mint chocolate brownie larabar, Rose Pricks podcast, and glute workouts! ____________ Big thank […] PaleOMG Uncensored yes 1:05:43
Crested Butte, Dealing w/ Stress, and Stay Organized – Episode 69: PaleOMG Uncensored Podcast Sat, 27 Jan 2018 14:05:49 +0000 19 Today on the podcast, I’m all over the place. Bachelor recap, my trip to Crested Butte, cooking videos, how I finally crashed after 3 days of stress, what I did to recover, and tips on working from home and staying […] Today on the podcast, I’m all over the place. Bachelor recap, my trip to Crested Butte, cooking videos, how I finally crashed after 3 days of stress, what I did to recover, and tips on working from home and staying organized with your own work. Yeah, it’s all over the place.


Support the podcast by clicking the Subscribe button on iTunes and please a review only if you love the podcast! There is enough negativity in this world, don’t spread more. I love hearing about what YOU want me to talk about so feel free to leave on comment here or on social media with topics you’d like me to cover! And don’t forget, some posts have affiliate links which I may be compensated from. This compensation helps with keeping this blog and up and running! Thank you so much for your support, you guys are amazing!


Episode 69 Transcription Coming Soon!

Today on the podcast, I’m all over the place. Bachelor recap, my trip to Crested Butte, cooking videos, how I finally crashed after 3 days of stress, what I did to recover, and tips on working from home and staying […] Today on the podcast, I’m all over the place. Bachelor recap, my trip to Crested Butte, cooking videos, how I finally crashed after 3 days of stress, what I did to recover, and tips on working from home and staying […] PaleOMG Uncensored yes 48:24
Listener Questions – Episode 68: PaleOMG Uncensored Podcast Sat, 20 Jan 2018 14:15:09 +0000 2 Answering your fun questions on the podcast today!! Thank you to everyone who wrote in on instagram and left a question to answer! If I missed yours, feel free to come over to and I’ll be sure to answer […] Answering your fun questions on the podcast today!! Thank you to everyone who wrote in on instagram and left a question to answer! If I missed yours, feel free to come over to and I’ll be sure to answer it there!

And don’t forget to snag the free bacon for all of 2018 in the ButcherBox campaign (that ends Jan 31st!)


Support the podcast by clicking the Subscribe button on iTunes and please a review only if you love the podcast! There is enough negativity in this world, don’t spread more. I love hearing about what YOU want me to talk about so feel free to leave on comment here or on social media with topics you’d like me to cover! And don’t forget, some posts have affiliate links which I may be compensated from. This compensation helps with keeping this blog and up and running! Thank you so much for your support, you guys are amazing!


Episode 68 Transcription Coming Soon!

Answering your fun questions on the podcast today!! Thank you to everyone who wrote in on instagram and left a question to answer! If I missed yours, feel free to come over to and I’ll be sure to answer […] Answering your fun questions on the podcast today!! Thank you to everyone who wrote in on instagram and left a question to answer! If I missed yours, feel free to come over to and I’ll be sure to answer […] PaleOMG Uncensored yes 1:37:08
Interview w/ Emily Schromm – Episode 67: PaleOMG Uncensored Podcast Sat, 13 Jan 2018 14:17:13 +0000 0 Today on the podcast, I’m talking to the incredibly sweet and intelligent Emily Schromm! We are talking all the things including her experience on the Real World, The Challenge, creating her own business, sitting on Mark Cuban’s lap, her love […] Today on the podcast, I’m talking to the incredibly sweet and intelligent Emily Schromm! We are talking all the things including her experience on the Real World, The Challenge, creating her own business, sitting on Mark Cuban’s lap, her love and obsession with supplements, and some very large words she had to break down for me. She’s the best. Check out all her greatness here!


Big thank you to this week’s sponsors!

Sun Basket delivers organic, sustainable ingredients and delicious recipes weekly to your doorstep! They use organic produce, responsibly raised meats, sustainably sourced fish, and organic, pasture-raised eggs in all of their recipes. And you can pick from Paleo, Lean & Clean, Gluten-Free, Vegan and more! And they have about 18 different recipes to choose from each week! Best of all, the delicious easy recipes are ready in about 30 minutes. With Sunbasket, you have complete flexibility. You can cancel anytime, skip anytime and you can choose any meal plan you want! If you’re ready to stick with healthy meals throughout the week and really stick with your resolutions this year, you can now try Sun Basket for $35 off your first order! Click here to grab this offer before it’s gone!

Aaptiv produces audio-based workouts created by certified personal trainers available through a mobile app. They carefully select a group of certified personal trainers that guide you through every workout. And one of the coolest parts about Aaptiv is that you can do the workouts anywhere. Whether you like to workout at the gym, at home, outside, or when you’re traveling—Aaptiv is ready to go along with you! All you have to do is plug in your headphones! It’s like having a personal trainer in your pocket. And they have different workouts for everyone! Whether you’re interested in running, strength training, cycling, stair climbing, yoga, or even meditation, Aaptiv has a workout for you. And with more than 2,500 workouts available on the platform and 30+ new classes added each week, there’s always a new workout to try! Aaptiv subscriptions start at $14.99 billed monthly, or $99.99 for an annual membership. But right now a limited time, new members get 50% off an annual membership, which is just $49.99 for the whole year of unlimited workouts. Click here to get this amazing discount!


Support the podcast by clicking the Subscribe button on iTunes and please a review only if you love the podcast! There is enough negativity in this world, don’t spread more. I love hearing about what YOU want me to talk about so feel free to leave on comment here or on social media with topics you’d like me to cover! And don’t forget, some posts have affiliate links which I may be compensated from. This compensation helps with keeping this blog and up and running! Thank you so much for your support, you guys are amazing!


Episode 67 Transcription Coming Soon!

Today on the podcast, I’m talking to the incredibly sweet and intelligent Emily Schromm! We are talking all the things including her experience on the Real World, The Challenge, creating her own business, sitting on Mark Cuban’s lap, her love […] Today on the podcast, I’m talking to the incredibly sweet and intelligent Emily Schromm! We are talking all the things including her experience on the Real World, The Challenge, creating her own business, sitting on Mark Cuban’s lap, her love […] PaleOMG Uncensored yes 1:35:44
Cabo & Sticking w/ NYE Resolutions in 2018 – Episode 66: PaleOMG Uncensored Podcast Sat, 06 Jan 2018 13:10:54 +0000 6 Today on the podcast I’m recapping my recent trip to Cabo and ways to actually stick with your New Year’s Resolutions this year! And I’ll be doing a full recap of Cabo later on the blog this upcoming week! ____________ […] Today on the podcast I’m recapping my recent trip to Cabo and ways to actually stick with your New Year’s Resolutions this year! And I’ll be doing a full recap of Cabo later on the blog this upcoming week!


Big thank you to this week’s sponsor – Aaptiv. Aaptiv produces audio-based workouts created by certified personal trainers available through a mobile app. They carefully select a group of certified personal trainers that guide you through every workout. And one of the coolest parts about Aaptiv is that you can do the workouts anywhere. Whether you like to workout at the gym, at home, outside, or when you’re traveling—Aaptiv is ready to go along with you! All you have to do is plug in your headphones! It’s like having a personal trainer in your pocket. And they have different workouts for everyone! Whether you’re interested in running, strength training, cycling, stair climbing, yoga, or even meditation, Aaptiv has a workout for you. And with more than 2,500 workouts available on the platform and 30+ new classes added each week, there’s always a new workout to try!

Aaptiv subscriptions start at $14.99 billed monthly, or $99.99 for an annual membership. But right now a limited time, new members get 50% off an annual membership, which is just $49.99 for the whole year of unlimited workouts. Click here to get this amazing discount!


Support the podcast by clicking the Subscribe button on iTunes and please a review only if you love the podcast! There is enough negativity in this world, don’t spread more. I love hearing about what YOU want me to talk about so feel free to leave on comment here or on social media with topics you’d like me to cover! And don’t forget, some posts have affiliate links which I may be compensated from. This compensation helps with keeping this blog and up and running! Thank you so much for your support, you guys are amazing!


Episode 66 Transcription Coming Soon!

Today on the podcast I’m recapping my recent trip to Cabo and ways to actually stick with your New Year’s Resolutions this year! And I’ll be doing a full recap of Cabo later on the blog this upcoming week! ____________ […] Today on the podcast I’m recapping my recent trip to Cabo and ways to actually stick with your New Year’s Resolutions this year! And I’ll be doing a full recap of Cabo later on the blog this upcoming week! ____________ […] PaleOMG Uncensored yes 57:57
Interview w/ Diane Sanfilippo – Episode 65: PaleOMG Uncensored Podcast Sat, 30 Dec 2017 12:12:06 +0000 4 Today on the podcast, I’m talking to New York Times Best Selling Author Diane Sanfilippo. Diane was one of the first people I started following when I first started eating paleo and she really helped change my life when I […] Today on the podcast, I’m talking to New York Times Best Selling Author Diane Sanfilippo. Diane was one of the first people I started following when I first started eating paleo and she really helped change my life when I tried her 21 Day Sugar Detox almost 6 years ago. And her newest book 21 Day Sugar Detox Daily Guide releases on January 2nd 2018! This book is beautiful and it’s prepped and ready to help change life for the better! Hope you enjoy this interview!!


Support the podcast by clicking the Subscribe button on iTunes and please a review only if you love the podcast! There is enough negativity in this world, don’t spread more. I love hearing about what YOU want me to talk about so feel free to leave on comment here or on social media with topics you’d like me to cover! And don’t forget, some posts have affiliate links which I may be compensated from. This compensation helps with keeping this blog and up and running! Thank you so much for your support, you guys are amazing!


Episode 64 Transcription!

This is Juli Bauer from PaleOMG and you are listening to PaleOMG Uncensored.

Juli Bauer: Hey guys! It’s Juli from PaleOMG Uncensored. This is the podcast. Welcome to another episode. Today I will not be talking by myself and yawning 400 times, because I’m not getting any oxygen in. Because today, I will be talking to the lovely Diane Sanfilippo. The author extraordinaire. Blogger, podcaster. She really does it all. So welcome, Diane. Thank you so much for coming on today.

Diane Sanfilippo: Thanks for having me. I’m excited to chat with you. I feel like you’ve been on our podcast a few times, but for whatever reason, Liz always gets to chat with you. And I’m like; wait, what about me? {laughs}

Juli Bauer: I know. I know. Actually I was just talking to Liz. Because; I forget, last time I was on there. But I was talking to Liz just a couple of weeks ago, and she’s like; we need to have you back on the podcast.

Diane Sanfilippo: Yeah.

Juli Bauer: So we need to make it a threesome.

Diane Sanfilippo: I know. We just; our technology has not been amazing lately. We’ll figure it out and we’ll make sure that we all get on that show. That will be fun.

Juli Bauer: Yes. Well, today I’m having you on to talk about your new book, the 21-Day Sugar Detox Daily Guide. But before we get into that, I just want, for people who maybe have never heard of you or don’t really know your backstory. Will you kind of tell people how you came into paleo, how you got it started? Because you were one of the first people I found when I started paleo about 7 years ago. And I found, and I remember trying a couple of your recipes. And you had really great photos compared to everyone on the internet.

Diane Sanfilippo: {laughs}

Juli Bauer: Who was taking photos with their phone. Which, you may have been doing that too, but you were doing it well.

Diane Sanfilippo: Yeah.

Juli Bauer: So it was so nice to find such an easy, beautiful blog to search back in the day. So can you just tell a little bit about your story. When you started paleo; the whole gist of it. In a shortened version, obviously.

Diane Sanfilippo: Yeah. {laughs} I’ll try and be as brief as I can. For those who heard us just chatting about my podcast, Balanced Bites podcast is the show. So if you’re like; I want to hear more about this, whatever I’m talking about, go over there. Because I’m going to try and keep it brief.

So I started learning about holistic nutrition from my own personal trainer, probably back in 2007, 2006. A really, really long time ago. That was the whole gluten free, dairy free, soy free, what is gluten back then. And eventually got into studying nutrition. Because I was super interested in it. I remember learning that we could prevent disease and just be healthier overall. It was basically like, before that all I knew was that you could not smoke, and kind of exercise and “eat well”. But I didn’t really know what that meant. So I went back to school for holistic nutrition. And kind of in that process I started crossfitting.

So that was probably back in 2009, 2008. I can’t even really remember the exact timing. But about the same time. So I was studying holistic nutrition at Bauman College, which is here in the Bay area. And Berkley, there are a couple of others. I think there’s one in the Boulder area, too. So somewhat near you. Anyway, I started studying holistic nutrition. And I went to a seminar that Robb Wolf was teaching. And literally, it was like; my worlds were colliding. It was somebody who came from a fitness background teaching about nutrition, and everything he was saying made sense. It went along with what I was learning from my holistic nutrition studies. And it just kind of jived with this feeling that I had that we should eat like our ancestors. But I wasn’t really thinking all of our ancestors. {laughs} I was just kind of thinking; my Italian ancestors, or my German ancestors.

So that’s where the whole paleo thing kind of gelled for me. And I always credit Robb Wolf, because he was the one who kind of took it from what Loren Cordain had been teaching. And that was the classroom I sat in. So that sparked me. As I was in school, I was like; this was really fun learning in a classroom setting. And I’m a total classroom learner; I love to learn through pictures and sound. So I like to hear people talk, and I like to see pictures on the board or the white board or whatever it’s going to be. So that inspired me to start teaching seminars.

I started teaching, literally around the country, within about 6 months of when I decided to do it. Somebody invited me to Arizona, and was like; “Hey, can you come teach a seminar?” I was like, ok. I guess I can. And I did that for many, many years. So some people may be listening who met me at a seminar. But that was kind of the very background with how I got started with all of this. There’s more to the story, but nobody has time for all of that. {laughs} But that’s kind of the quick background.

And that’s really where Practical Paleo came from. Between working with clients one on one, and then teaching seminars, I just kind of figured out what kinds of questions and answers would really help people the most. So I put it together in that book. So there might be people listening who have the book, and never put it together that I’m the one that wrote it. I feel like there’s so many more people who have the book than I’ve ever been in contact with. But that’s really cool to me. So that was kind of the beginning.

Juli Bauer: And Practical Paleo. So you have done a revamp of the book; that’s what people get when they purchase it online now, correct?

Diane Sanfilippo: Mm-hmm. Yeah, if you go to Amazon or anywhere, you’re getting the updated second edition.

Juli Bauer: And that book is huge. It is; I mean, it is filled with so much information. How long did it take you to not only create all the recipes in that book, but then create all the science and content? And so many crazy facts in there. How long did it take you to do that? And then do it a second time when you revamped it?

Diane Sanfilippo: {laughs} Well, to initially write it was probably about a year. But if you think about the fact that I was studying nutrition, then working with clients, and teaching seminars, all of that time really feeds into the writing of the book in a sense. And Liz and I actually taught seminars together for part of that time. But it’s the curriculum I was teaching in a full day seminar in the front of the book. But expanded in the book. Because at some point, you have to stop talking {laughs} when you’re in front of people all day. But you can keep putting it in a book.

So, it took a long time. I had definitely never done anything; I’d never worked on a project. I’d never done anything in school; all of college. I’m sure you can remember back to papers and exams, whatever. I literally never worked so hard in my life as I did to write that book the very first time. I mean, I felt like I was going to die, I was just so stressed out. And I just care about it so much. I cared about it so much then, and I care about it so much now.

And the second time, when I rewrote it, it was about a 6 to 8-month process to rewrite it. I mean, I did really rewrite the entire book. So now it’s kind of like; I don’t know. It was four years later, and you know how things have changed over four years in the questions that people have and things about white rice and potatoes and all that. Am I eating too many carbs? Should I eat more carbs?

All of those questions I wanted to kind of get it to a place where, if people are buying the book. Because they still are. People call it the paleo bible. If you’re new to paleo or just curious about it, whatever. Or even just holistic nutrition in general. Like you said; I talk about blood sugar regulation, and digestion, and all these things that really anyone can learn about how their body works with food in that book. But I wanted it to be sort of like; I don’t know. I wanted it to be updated and the best of the best of what I had to offer. So that’s why I updated it. And I’m super proud of that second edition. Now I feel closure with the book.

Juli Bauer: Oh, that’s awesome.

Diane Sanfilippo: You know what it’s like when you finish a cookbook, and you’re kind of like; oh, I could have put this in there, or I should have done that differently. I don’t feel that way anymore. Now I’m like; ok. It’s good now.

Juli Bauer: Yeah. So after you did Practical Paleo, you came out with other smaller books, right?

Diane Sanfilippo: Yeah. So the 21-Day Sugar Detox actually, which is the book that I’m mostly talking about today is a third in that series. I actually wrote the 21-Day Sugar Detox program before I wrote Practical Paleo. So back in 2010. A lot of people have that eBook from back in the day. Early blogging days.

Juli Bauer: Yeah. I did.

Diane Sanfilippo: Yeah! And I’m like; oh my gosh, you found my blog and there was something impressive about it back then? {laughs} I’m just laughing because we all know what our photos looked like about 10 years ago.

Juli Bauer: Totally.

Diane Sanfilippo: It’s crazy.

Juli Bauer: So how did you come up with the 21-Day Sugar Detox? What inspired that? What made you decide what was on this list? Can you kind of explain to people who haven’t heard about the 21-Day Sugar Detox what that is and how you came up with it?

Diane Sanfilippo: So, back in 2010, I had gone through a similar program that a nutritionist; someone on the internet was just like; let’s do this for 21 days. And just kind of threw it out there. Just like we’ve all seen a million paleo challenges, or whatever its going to be for X number of days or weeks. And I realized that for me, I had tried to go paleo before that. And I personally didn’t find that that was the end-all be-all for me. Just eating; as crazy as it sounds, just eating meats, vegetables, nuts, and seeds, fruit, whatever, was not quite the answer for me.

Because the thing that I struggled with the most was sugar. I could not figure out how to get my blood sugar regulated. How to feel like every 2 hours I wasn’t just shaky and starving and reaching for a granola bar or whatever it was going to be. For me, that was something that kind of plagued me forever. I mean, I was that girl. I don’t know if this ever happened to you; but you’re in the middle of Target and you’re like; oh my gosh, if I don’t eat something right now, I am going to pass out. {laughs}

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Diane Sanfilippo: That’s how I used to be. And I say Target, because who’s is in there for less than 20-30 minutes? We’re all in there for at least an hour {laughs}. Or waiting for a reservation at a restaurant; my friends would be like, “Oh my gosh, she’s not going to make it.” I think I had reactive hypoglycemia really badly. Just because I was eating such a high-carb diet in the past.

I’m not anti-carb at all. It’s just; it’s kind of a long story but I talk about it in the book. Certain carbs are not going to do that to you, and certain carbs are. So for me it was this experience of figuring out that I needed to eat more protein and more fat and get this junk processed food out of my diet so that I wouldn’t have those spikes and crashes. So I wouldn’t get shaky.

I went through kind of figuring out; this is a combination of going through a super loose program that someone had put out. But also I had been studying nutrition for a while. And I was like; here’s what I think will work the best for people in terms of meeting them where they are. So there are three levels to the 21-Day Sugar Detox. And level 3 is sort of; it’s the paleo way to do it. But it’s definitely not something that I say everyone has to do level 3 of the program. Through my holistic nutrition studies. Sorry, I just had some coffee so I’m like, brbrbrb. {laughs}

Juli Bauer: {laughs}

Diane Sanfilippo: I definitely know that there are a lot of people who don’t need to eat strictly paleo. We know that now. That not everybody needs to eat that way to be healthy. I also knew that if I introduced everyone to the most strict form of eating that I could, that they might just say no. And rather than saying no, I’d like to meet people where they are. And that’s part of having worked with people over the years to see that people don’t need to eat strict paleo to get healthier. And I’m just trying to get people healthier. And also, break some of their norms of what they had been eating.

So, when we get people to just switch to something gluten free; that’s a win. Because we just shake them out of their old pattern. So for me it’s important to shake people out of old patterns, whether that’s about food or anything else. I think you probably know that about my personality. I just want people to start thinking differently than they have in the past.

So if I can get people on board, then level one of the program is great for them. So that includes stuff like full-fat dairy and some limited gluten free grains or legumes. Same thing with level 2 of the program. It doesn’t have any grains or legumes, but it does have full-fat dairy. And then level 3, like I said, is grain free, dairy free, and it’s sort of a mostly paleo way of eating.

But everyone is limited on the types of fruit they can eat. Because I did want people to get away from a lot of sweet fruits, just for a few weeks. I have no problem with people eating things like strawberries, and mango, and pineapple in your regular life. I don’t think those are unhealthy foods whatsoever. However, I do think when we get rid of them for a period of time, we notice how sweet a lot of foods can be. And there’s an upside to that. To training your palate. And even not eating things like dates; which are a healthy way to sweeten food. They are very, very, very sweet.

I know you’ve had a lot of ups and downs with getting rid of sugar, and finding that you do so much better when you just avoid it most of the time. And people sweetening things too much with dates, or even protein type bars that have tons of dates in them. I just think it’s worth getting rid of that stuff for a few weeks.

Juli Bauer: My experience with the 21-Day Sugar Detox; this was probably 5 years ago. Maybe 6 years ago even. I was kind of newer into my paleo life, and finding what worked for me and what didn’t work for me. And I was very much in the limiting stage of my life. Where I was like; I’m just gaining weight. I’m going to make sure I don’t eat as much. Limit my calories, workout more. I was in the kind of psycho stage, and not really understanding what foods I needed.

But what I loved about the 21-Day Sugar Detox was I was so addicted to sugar. And I think so many of us have gone through this stage where we don’t understand the sugar we’re putting into our body. And we won’t come to terms with it. Like maybe you’re eating chocolate every single night. And then when somebody is asking you; what are you eating? We don’t even really understand that that’s what we’re putting in our body regularly. And I don’t know if that makes sense, but I think we just go into this denial stage.

Diane Sanfilippo: Or you’re just not paying attention to it.

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Diane Sanfilippo: You know? There’s an awareness that happens when you do make that rule of; ok, this is what I’m not eating for 3 weeks. You know?

Juli Bauer: Yeah. And you start paying attention to things. Because maybe if you ate packaged, processed foods on a regular basis, then you start looking at the ingredients and you see how much sugar is in that. Or you pay attention to how much sugar is in the coffee you just got at Starbucks.

And so I think we’re not always aware of the sugar. And then once I did this 21-Day Sugar Detox, and cut out the sugar, I was having; by day 5 I was having a really hard time.

Diane Sanfilippo: Yeah. {laughs}

Juli Bauer: Where I had no energy, I was feeling completely drained. And I was like; oh my god! I am f*cking straight up addicted to sugar. And then I was able to add in some more starches into my diet, because I was working out. You know, I was crossfitting competitively at that point. But it was really such an eye opening experience that first 5 days I was like a f*cking addict coming down off these drugs. And then, by day 21, I’m just not even thinking about it anymore. It is truly life changing how much we’re addicted to something and we don’t even understand it until we can push past that point.

So, I wish more people understood that and could try it out. Because sugar is bad! It is crazy how much it takes a hold of you, just like drugs.

Diane Sanfilippo: I mean, your experience is literally textbook. {laughs} Where you say by day 5. I tell people; basically days 3 through 7 are super hard. And some people don’t have that experience. If you were to do it now, you wouldn’t have that experience. Because your nutrition is totally different than it was before. But a lot of people; that’s their really hard time.

And I go over that in the book, in a lot more detail in this one than I ever have before. Because I want people to know this is the hard part, and it will get easier. You know? If you know that’s going to be hard, then I feel like knowing what to expect is sort of half the battle of getting through it in a sense. Because you know that there is something better on the other side.

But your point, too, about getting rid of the sugar and sweeteners and processed foods. Or maybe you were just doing tons of paleo treats at the time.

Juli Bauer: 100%.

Diane Sanfilippo: Because if you were eating paleo; yeah. When you realize that adding healthy forms of starchy carbs will improve your athletic performance, but it actually does not make you crave sweets. Like, that was your exact experience. And I talk about that even more in this book, again, than I have before. Because it’s been 4 years since I wrote the first.

So, 7 years since I wrote the original program, but 4 since I released the other 2 books. And there are tons of recipes that are amazing in those books. I think anyone who has them; keep them. Don’t give them to your friends. Because if you want to do the program again, there’s tons of recipes in there.

But that’s one of the things I experienced, as well. Where I was like; wait a minute, if I eat the sweet potato with some butter and cinnamon, or ghee and cinnamon, or whatever. I hit that part where my body was craving the carbs, because I was training. But it doesn’t have this frantic, sugar, hangry monster feeling. Right? It’s like; oh, my cells actually wanted that. But I’m not crazy. My mind’s not kind of messed up about it. But it feels totally different, and it feels, once you eat those good healthy carbs, your body sort of relaxes a little and realizes; ok I got what I needed and now I don’t need to keep bugging her to eat sugar. {laughs} You know? It’s like this whole thing that happens internally, and it’s real. It’s a really effect.

And I don’t want people to think that carbs are the devil. I’m fine if people want to eat low carb or keto. I’m indifferent to it. Do it if it works for you. But if it doesn’t work for you, don’t. And we’ve had tons of podcast episodes over on the Balanced Bites podcast about that. But we always; in the name of balance, always talk about it from both sides. And I don’t think that that’s the answer for everyone. And one of the things I really tried to address in this new book is that carbs are fine. And there are ways to eat them that are totally healthy. And I want people not to be scared of them, because as you found, there’s a way to have a good balance with them that optimizes how you’re feeling all around.

Juli Bauer: And I want to come back to kind of talking about sugars and different kind of sugars. But can you talk about your own experience? Because you’ve talked about this, I’m sure on your podcast. And then on your Instagram and on your blog, about changing the way you eat. So I know you’ve tried macros, you’ve done keto. You’re constantly trying new things. And I’m sure you’re trying that so you can talk about it and share your own experience with the people who are following you and wanting to know your experience with it.

So can you talk about the different variations of paleo, and gluten free. Just different diets that you’ve tried over the years, and what you’ve found works best for you. Because I talk about that on my podcast a lot; finding a diet that works for you, and how I’ve done that, and how that continually changes. What have you done, and what has worked best for your body?

Diane Sanfilippo: So, over the years. I probably; I actually was like, I’m trying to think. I’ve been doing this whole blogging/teaching nutrition thing now for, probably almost 10 years. {laughs} I’m 39, and I think it’s also interesting because how all of this affects us definitely changes over time. I think my body was more resilient to different inputs 10 years ago than it is now. It’s a little more sensitive. Or; it doesn’t respond as quickly, but I also feel negative effects more easily now, if that makes sense.

So, back in the day, I basically went gluten free as the first step. I didn’t really notice much of a change, but I did notice that when I went paleo, a lot of things changed for the better. And at this point, I attribute that mostly to just eating more real whole foods and ditching the processed stuff. Because now I don’t fully eat paleo.

But some of the things that kind of got better for me were just my vision and my dental health were two things that year after year I would go back to the doctor and get a slightly stronger prescription for my eyes, or have another cavity or almost one. And some of that is genetic. Some of that we can’t tell what’s going to happen. But we know that we impact that. And sugar absolutely, obviously impacts your dental health. But your sugar intake impacts your vision. Almost directly. We know that people who are diabetic lose their vision or it gets impaired. So just something to keep in mind if you’re like; oh my gosh, that’s me. I keep getting these stronger prescriptions. Maybe I should cut the sugar.

So those were a couple of things for me. And then obviously, like I said, my blood sugar regulation got so much better when I realized that just the processed foods and how many sweeteners and sugars I was eating all the time. So that was first step.

After that, at one point I went keto, low carb. And this was probably a couple of years later into the whole thing. I think when I was writing Practical Paleo, the first time, was sort of when I stopped eating keto at a certain point. Because I remember doing a CrossFit workout at a gym that had a grand opening party, during writing Practical Paleo. So this must have been the winter of 2011. And I was trying to do this high intensity workout; and my head started pounding, and I was so tired and kind of out of breath. And after I finished it, I was so nauseous and light headed, and had a massive headache.

And I was like; that didn’t really feel good. {laughs} Maybe I shouldn’t have been eating so low carb, right? That’s not a normal feeling. Like yeah, CrossFit workouts can make a lot of people feel that way, but I was in really good shape. So I had just pushed too hard, and I literally did not have glycogen stores. Which is the stored form of carbohydrates that you need to get through that high intensity exercise.

So, I kind of stopped doing that. But I will say, I think if I were to say what feel the best for me, blood sugar wise and all of that, I would say relatively lower carb does feel good for me in general. And my body physically seems to respond well to that in terms of my shape, and how my body stores body fat, and all of that.

But I did also do, a couple of years ago now, a macros meal plan for about 12 weeks. And like everyone else, I go through periods of high stress, and where I have an injury or something happens. I feel like; I don’t know, I go through maybe 3 to 6 months or even up to a year where I just wasn’t training as much. And whatever; my body responds to that too, and I might put on a few pounds. So, I was like; what can I try this time, and just see.

Like you said; I like to just see how does my body respond to it. I don’t like to assume that something that may have worked for me in the past will always work for me again. So I tried it. And it did work. And I think anything can work for anymore, it just is a matter of how you approach it and what the mindset you have is. And also what the real goal is. At this stage in my life; like I said, I’m almost 40. I have been going through a lot of stress. And I have not been able to train that I would like to train. I consider myself an athlete. But stress has just been so high and the last several months I’ve been like; you know what, I need to focus on my sleep. {laughs}

So for me, nutrition; I don’t also then pile onto that. Like, oh let me do some diet, or be super strict about my eating. I’m more about getting in lots of real, whole foods. And if that means there are treats here and there. And I’m happy to talk about that mindset as well. I don’t see that as a problem. I think it’s a matter of finding; just finding how you will feel best. And I think that means physically and mentally emotionally. And I know some people start to feel really anxious if they feel overly restricted, and some people feel anxious if they don’t have some kind of hard line to draw on things.

For me, I’m at a stage where not focusing on the food. Although it remains, at least 80% clean, healthy, normal food. Not focusing on that as my priority to nitpick my food has actually been really helpful for my sleep and energy levels. And I’m at a place where I really want to encourage people to focus on those things as well. I think a lot of times; I don’t know. I don’t think it’s just when we’re younger. I don’t mean to collect people up that way.

I know that for me, when I was younger, I was so concerned with how what I ate affected how I looked. Which is fine. There’s nothing wrong with that. I’m just in a place now where I want to pay more attention to how I feel, and how I can show up in the world. And that is something that; you know, that’s what I pay attention to with what I’m eating. That makes sense? I don’t know.

Juli Bauer: And that’s, I think, the stage that I feel at. I would love to be able to do macros and really dial it in and see what my body can do, and the changes it can make. But I feel the same way. It’s like; do I want to add that stress of having to measure and figure out all the portions ahead of time and whatever else when there are so many other stressors in life. Whether it’s life, it’s work, it’s your relationship, it’s your friendship. It’s getting enough sleep in, taking care of your child. Do I want to add that type of stress to my daily routine? And in term, maybe hurt myself. F*ck up my cortisol.

Diane Sanfilippo: Yeah.

Juli Bauer: So I think a lot of people go through this feeling like they need to create this template for themselves. But they may hurt themselves long term because of this strict template they’ve put themselves on.

Diane Sanfilippo: Yeah. It makes it so that you then think that that’s the only way to be healthy. Or that that’s the only thing that works for you. And I really; I just don’t believe that even something that worked for you in the past. And what does that even mean; working for you? It made you lose weight or body fat? That might be fine.

But I think most people who are looking to control food, to control their body shape or body fat level, get a place. I say this all the time on the Balanced Bites podcast. And I even tell it to myself. When you have 5 or 10 pounds that you want to lose, that’s when you’re in diet-land. It’s just about dieting, and to me, that’s not; I don’t know. It’s fine. It’s a worthy pursuit if you feel like doing it. It’s just not the most important thing to me. If someone comes up to me and that’s where they’re at; that’s fine. I’m just not going to be a diet coach.

I really have been struggling with the idea that, here I am, putting out a book that is basically a diet book, so to speak. I’ve come to a place where not only do I realize that there are people out there who are struggling with type 2 diabetes, or issues with their health on a much greater scale. I have people writing to me, and they’re like, “I finally got my dad to change what he was eating, and his liver enzymes got better.”

Things that we don’t really think about on a daily basis when we’re exposed to people just talking about eating healthy. We forget about how many people who are out there who are not listening to podcasts like this all the time. And I am going somewhere with this. {laughs}

I’m happy to keep teaching this stuff, because I want people to know that this does matter. That eating real, whole food does matter. And, that it’s also not the only thing in the world that’s worthy of doing for ourselves, if that makes sense at all. This is important, and if somebody finds me and my work, I’m psyched because then they’re going to hear about so many other things that I think they need to hear about. {laughs} Like living a life that they really want to live.

Which is, I know, something that you’re passionate about, too. Obviously, as entrepreneurs, we don’t clock in and take a paycheck. We work really hard for what we do. And those are all things that if changing the way someone eats is a path to help them find me, and whatever else I’m going to teach about, I’m actually really happy about that. And I’m happy to be a person who’s on the other side of a “diet book.”

Because I am forcing people to pay attention and to think and to do what’s best for them, rather than being someone who’s standing in front of you saying, “This is the end-all, be-all, right thing to do. It’s the healthiest and the best way to live for forever.” I want people to actually just wake up and realize that we are all responsible for finding what works for us. And I think this is an amazing springboard into learning more.

That’s one of the things I did in this new book. I have a whole week of what to do after the detox, and I talk about finding your own new normal, and finding what that looks like for you. Which is exactly what we were just talking about. What is our new normal? And when does that even change? You know. It’s not like; ok, here’s how I eat forever and ever, you know?

Juli Bauer: And going off that; I’m sure when people look to you and what you do and the work you put out there, they think that you probably have your sh*t together all the time.

Diane Sanfilippo: {laughing}

Juli Bauer: When it comes to your eating habits. And for me, I feel like I have my sh*t together, and but then maybe something is kind of off in my life and I’ll find myself just turning to some chocolate, when I’m not even craving it. And it’s just, maybe I’m lacking something emotionally and so I’m turning to that. Or I’m stressed, and so I’m turning to that. And I have to reset myself and say; you don’t actually want that. You need to stop eating chocolate every night. We’ll detox yourself from it, and then we can get back to when you’re craving it, you have it.

So people see you as having your sh*t together. Because you create such amazing content. Do you go through these times of; oh my god, I’ve been having a treat every day. Or I’m just craving something I shouldn’t. Do you go through that on a regular basis and kind of have to reset, or detox, or whatever you want to call it?

Diane Sanfilippo: {laughs} So I guess, yes and no. I definitely eat treats. And I try and share about that when I feel like it’s appropriate. I don’t post 100% of the food I’m eating on social media, so I also don’t then post 100% of the treats I might be eating. I think it’s a mindset thing. I am not in a place where I feel the need to punish myself for making a conscious decision to eat the lemon bars that my husband made. And continue to eat them, each day, because I actually don’t feel a craving for them. And I don’t know if everybody kind of understands the difference between just choosing to eat it and moving on with your life, or feeling like it’s pulling you and you can’t say no to it.

I definitely am in a place where those are two very different things. And I really don’t feel like I physically crave sugar. And a lot of that has to do with lifestyle changes, and getting more sleep, and not feeling shameful at all around the decision to eat those treats. You know what I mean? I think a lot of people beat themselves up. And it’s like; just eat the damn cookie. It’s just a cookie! People put so much. They attach so many things to the cookie.

And I get it. If you’re in a place where you haven’t gone through all of those emotions, and I don’t know. Whatever else. You haven’t figured out that if you’re eating the cookie all the time. I’m just using that as an example. There is other stuff going on, that it’s not about the cookie. I’m not a psychotherapist, or a therapist. I just know that for all of us, like you said exactly. If you’re really stressed or something is going on in your life, we all have different ways of coping. And maybe we haven’t figured out the alternative means by which we can cope with something, or deal with it. Most of the time, when we turn to food, it’s not about the food.

So I think it just depends. If someone has a physical addiction, and sugar is like; you cannot not eat it, or you really are craving it and craving carbs and all of that, of course not eating it is going to be such a useful tool to just relearning what to eat instead. And having that awareness in those moments of exactly what you said; actually, the chocolate is not what I want. The cookie is not what I want. Most of the time, people are lonely, or they’re bored, or they’re stressed. Those are the three things that come up the most.

I think over time we learn what’s going on, and we learn if we’re going to handle it and deal with it in the moment or not. And {laughs} for me it’s almost always stress. Anxiety and stress. I’m just like; I don’t know. There’s just stuff. We all have stuff going on in our lives. But I definitely am not in a place where I want to beat myself up for it. It’s like; I’m an adult. I made that decision. Deal with the consequences and move on.

I want people to get away from guilt and shame around eating things. Because also then, when do you get to enjoy it? I know you make plenty of treats for PaleOMG. And I’m like; great. Have the treat everyone. But let’s not then feel bad about it after. Enjoy the treat. I wrote the 21-Day Sugar Detox and I’m telling you to enjoy the treats. {laughs} That’s part of what I put in the new book. It’s a lot of mindset stuff and a lot of ways to just look at this stuff differently without the guilt and the shame that everyone wants to attach to their food choices.

Juli Bauer: Yeah. The shame part is a huge piece that I think so many people need to come to terms with. But I want to jump into questions. And before I do, I just want to do a quick kind of; what are sugars. There are so many different kinds of sugars out there. From sugars that are in dates, or fruit, or whatever else. To the super sketchy sugars that we shouldn’t be consuming. So can you just do a kind of a quick rundown of what are “healthy sugars” versus sugars that people should be keeping an eye out for when they’re eating processed foods and they should understand that; other than not eating processed foods, those sugars should not be in their body. Can you kind of tell the difference between good versus bad sugars?

Diane Sanfilippo: Sure. So as a first step, I’ll just kind of clarify. For the 21-Day Sugar Detox, no added sweeteners of any kind are allowed, with the exception of something that comes from the three types of fruit that they’re allowed to have on the program. Which are green apples, very specifically because they’re tart. Green-tipped bananas, because they’re not sweet, they’re just more starchy. Or grapefruit, because it’s obviously very sour and tart. So those things, unlike other types of fruit, are just not that sweet. So people on the 21-Day Sugar Detox, those are the only ways that you can kind of get a little bit of sweetness. Or something like coconut butter.

But in general, there are, I would kind of categorize all sweeteners or hidden sugars in sort of three different categories. We have first and foremost artificial sweeteners. Which are things like aspartame, and saccharine, and sucralose. So this is like Sweet n’ Low, and Splenda, and Equal and all of those. Even stevia, if it’s white; I’m just not a huge fan. You can have stevia as an extract or a green leaf form, which I’ll talk about in a second. But anything that’s artificial or non-caloric sweeteners, I’m just not a huge fan.

People ask me about monk fruit; it’s not the same as something like aspartame. But it’s just not my favorite, and I think the jury is still out on some of those. But super toxic, things like aspartame and sucralose, Splenda and all those. So that’s artificial sweeteners.

Then there’s naturally derived sweeteners. And I made this category up. Because these are not purely lab created; but, I think there are some problems with them. So that’s where stuff like agave falls. Things like corn syrup. It does come from corn, it’s not purely man made. But it’s so processed, and I would absolutely tell people to stay away from it. This is where I categorize things like erythritol, maltitol, all of the sugar alcohols. Again, naturally derived, but mostly non-caloric in that category. I’m not really a fan of non-caloric sweeteners. What else is in that category? Maltodextrin. All those types of things. I have these all in my guide to hidden sugars, it’s in the 21-Day Sugar Detox.

And then there’s natural sweeteners. So things like cane sugar, brown sugar, molasses, date sugar or dates. Any fruit, whole fruit, can be considered a natural sweetener. Maple syrup. All of that. I do have monk fruit in that category, but there are types of monk fruit; it just varies. But all of that stuff is natural. Not much is done to it to make it into what it is sweetening your food.

So the way that I like for people to approach it is; when you have something sweet, there should be calories with it. That’s what nature dictates. Again, one exception is stevia. If you’re getting it in a leave format, it looks like ground sage, basically. Can be an exception, but not many people are using a lot of that, because it can be kind of off-putting. But I don’t think there’s anything wrong with natural sweeteners in small amounts.

I don’t really like the term moderation, because I think that’s a hard one for people to hear or understand. Like, what is moderation? That’s different for everyone. But somebody who has well-regulated blood sugar and is eating mostly whole foods and gets plenty of protein and fat who puts a teaspoon of maple syrup or even sugar in their coffee in the morning with a well-balanced meal, I don’t think that’s the end of the world. But I do think that there are times when we need to not do that, if that makes sense.

The stuff that I want people to never really have are those super artificial; aspartame, sucralose, Splenda, Sweet n’ Low, Equal. All of that. And then those naturally derived are kind of a gray area. I mean, I always stay away from corn syrup, agave, all of that. But if you’re exposed to a little bit here and there, just sort of accidentally, I don’t think that people need to freak out. {laughs} Does that answer that one?

Juli Bauer: OK. That’s good to know. It totally does. I love hearing all that. Because I feel like when I first started paleo, agave was the big thing. And then people started talking about how processed it was, and I was like; oh, ok. So I shouldn’t be haven’t this? And then I’m a person who will have agave once in a while, like in a margarita, if I don’t have honey around. And I’ve talked about that on my blog, doing honey or agave. And people sh*t their brick sometimes about the agave. And I’m like; dude. I’m not drinking f*cking margaritas all day every day, either.

Diane Sanfilippo: Exactly.

Juli Bauer: So, this is a very few and far between. But I’m the same way. I stay far away from the zero sugar aspartame, bright pink, green, blue packets. {laughs} I stay away from those.

Diane Sanfilippo: And the question people ask a lot is; all they all the same to your body. And it’s like; yes and no. Different things happen in the body in response to different elements of a sweetener. So for example, the fact that it’s sweet at all, there’s been research sort of on both sides of this. I don’t think there’s a conclusive answer.

But there has been research that shows just eating something sweet triggers something in our body to have reactions that expect calories. That can have a negative effect, and I think people have probably experienced this who have used a lot of artificial sweeteners, where then they find that they’re more hungry. There are lots of other downsides to having sweeteners that don’t have calories. But it’s just; there are not sweet foods in nature without calories. So I just don’t like that approach.

But, in terms of; are you eating a sweetener for nutrition? No. You’re not. So if you have the agave now and then, I don’t think anybody needs to freak out about it. But are there some that are maybe better than others? Yeah, of course. Honey, or dates are probably two of the most healthy sweeteners that you can find in terms of additional nutritional properties, or the fiber that comes in dates. Fiber and other nutrients that are in dates. But, eh, it’s sort of negligible. You know what I mean?

So use the one that you like the best that works the best for you. But use it in small amounts. That’s what I say. Because I just don’t think; and of course, this is not when you’re on the 21-Day Sugar Detox. {laughs} I just don’t think anybody needs to get their panties in a bunch over where you use honey or maple syrup or even organic cane sugar, for example, a little bit here and there.

Juli Bauer: Yeah. Ok, I want to get into questions because I want to ask you more questions, but I know some of these questions are mixed into these listener questions. So I asked people on Instagram if they had any questions, and there was a ton of questions out there. So I’m hoping to get to most of them.

Diane Sanfilippo: I’ll try and be brief. {laughing}

Juli Bauer: Yes. And if you guys ever have questions, Diane is so helpful on Instagram. I’m a person who writes back maybe once a day and not always. Diane will write you back so quickly. She’s on top of her f*cking sh*t. So, feel free to reach out to Diane.

But I love this as a first start to the questions, because it’s about your book. So this one is by Chirpy Bird, and she asks, “What did you do differently this time writing and editing your book than what you did in the past? Essentially, what have you learned and implemented with your own personal writing/publishing process?”

Diane Sanfilippo: I like this question. I do feel like when I rewrote Practical Paleo last year; or I guess it was early 2016. In terms of diet and lifestyle, I feel like I did a better job of managing my lifestyle and my stress when I rewrote that book. I was in a really good habit of early morning workouts. And I felt pretty good. Although, in hindsight, my energy in the afternoons was really not the best.

But during that process, I feel like I kept that in a good balance. During this process, what was really different was that I realized {laughs} which, this sounds kind of silly. But I finally realized that not every book I write can say everything I ever want to say about the topic. Or, that it has to be everything to everyone. This book doesn’t have to be for everyone, and that’s ok. So that was a really different thing for me.

I had to focus on what is the purpose of this book? And the purpose of this book is to guide you one week before, through the 21 days, and one week after. And give you a totally done for you meal plan with all the recipes you need and have everything you need in one place if that’s how you want to do it.

And to also get people paying attention to their process more than ever before. Because there’s journal space in this book, and the journal prompts change each day. And that was something that I didn’t know I was going to do until I finished writing all the content. I was like; wait a minute, I want to ask them different questions each day. I want them to tune in to what just happened today. Or if I talked about dining out, I want you to write down where are you going to eat, and what will you order there? And really make it practical for you.

So that was a really different thing I did with this book. And I just kind of let it be just what it is, you know. I don’t know how else to explain that. But I think most people who work on a project, you’re like; I need it to be everything. Right?

Juli Bauer: I know. And then you kind of freeze up.

Diane Sanfilippo: Yeah.

Juli Bauer: I feel like when I am starting to come up with a new idea, I sometimes freeze up because you want it to be perfect. And you have to understand that it won’t be perfect because you’ll want something more in the future. So, I love that.

Ok, Jilly Beans. Which I love that name. “My question would be, how was it to transition from,” And we kind of talked about this a little bit. “from definition of the typical paleo diet from your original blog/cookbooks to eating what suits your body best with social media, and constantly having to, what seems at times, defend your diet decisions.” Which I think we go through regularly. “What was the most challenging aspect?”

Diane Sanfilippo: That’s a good question.

Juli Bauer: Yeah, I think that’s a great question. Because I think that’s something I deal with on a regular basis of just having to defend myself; no matter what it is. No matter what it is. If it’s just vegetables and meat, I still have to defend myself at some point.

Diane Sanfilippo: {laughing} So crazy.

Juli Bauer: So how has that transition happened, and how have you dealt with that with social media? How do you feel about it in general?

Diane Sanfilippo: So, first and foremost, I understand that I’ve written a book called Practical Paleo, that more than half a million people have. So let’s just lay the foundation; people know me for that. And I get that. So, I understand that if people have a question, that they’re curious most of the time. Or they don’t understand because that’s where they came from with me. And I think it’s really important to understand that foundation.

I can usually also tell; I can infer what’s going on with the question by the way someone asks it or by the way they pose. There’s just sort of a tone; I don’t know, you can kind of tell if someone is being sort of rude or accusatory versus asking out of curiosity. So I try and tune into that.

But I think most of the time, people are asking to seek understanding. And it’s confusing. If I’ve written a book called Practical Paleo, and it says not to eat rice, and then I’m eating rice. So I don’t really take person offense to it. There’s a book called The Four Agreements; maybe there’s five now. One of the things is not to take anything personally. And I don’t take it personally if someone has that question. I often will just take the moment to explain it.

Although I am at a place where, for whatever reason, people don’t question what I’m doing. And I think it’s because I do talk about it a lot. I think a lot of people who follow me on social media also listen to my podcast, and have heard me talk over the last 6 years about all of those transitions, and all of the evolution of thinking in the way that I’m doing things. And I think that for some reason, I feel like in the last year of two. I don’t know if you’ve seen this too, Juli. But in the last year or two there’s less of it. I don’t know. There used to be a lot of people who were the paleo police, basically. About everything. And I just don’t think that that happens as much now.

But part of it is also personality. I just don’t give a sh*t what anybody thinks of me. So if they’re going to think less of me because I’m doing something that doesn’t make sense to them, or they don’t approve of, then that’s not really my problem. But I do understand that a lot of people just need to hear the rationale. And fortunately for everyone, I always have a rationale for everything. I’m constantly thinking and analyzing everything. My brain is constantly like that. So if someone wants to know why, then I will give them my best answer as to why.

And sometimes the why is, because I want to. {laughs} Like, why do you eat that? Because I want to. And also I don’t feel negative effects of it. You know what I mean? I think there might be some people who are really sensitive, or are afraid to kind of be out there publicly living their lives. And for those people, it could be a lot harder. But I’m kind of like; take me or leave me. And I’ll do my best to explain and teach, but at the same time, I’m not going to defend my choices, because they’re mine. You know?

Juli Bauer: Yeah. And I think a lot of people on social media, if they’re being attacking in any sort of way, they either don’t understand or they’re feeling insecurity.

Diane Sanfilippo: Right.

Juli Bauer: And it’s just coming off; that’s making them feel better in the moment is making someone else feel bad about what they’re eating, when it’s just their own insecurity about what their consuming. That’s what I’ve found on social media more than anything.

Diane Sanfilippo: And I don’t think it happens as much lately. I do feel like; there was a period of time. Don’t you remember when people would be like, “Potatoes aren’t paleo.” Like, every day, someone would come and tell you that? And you’re like, yeah. Ok. Whatever. {laughs}

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Diane Sanfilippo: But it doesn’t happen really anymore.

Juli Bauer: For sure. It’s getting a little bit better, for sure. Ok, this next question. I think this is; we kind of touched on this a little bit. But this is from A Whole Lot Of Chasley, maybe? “Can you ask Diane how to get over the fear of not counting macros for someone who really wants to complete a challenge? I have a fear of gaining weight, and counting macros gives me a sense of security that I’m eating enough but not too much. I love both your podcasts, and can’t wait to hear from you both.”

Diane Sanfilippo: Mmm. {Laughs} That’s a good one. There’s a lot going on.

Juli Bauer: It’s hard. It’s hard.

Diane Sanfilippo: Yeah. There’s a lot going on there. I get it, because in my life and my experience, counting or measuring or to some level being specific about my nutrition is actually, to this day, has been the only way for me to actually see fat loss. I think most of the time if that’s what’s going on. If you have to be that detailed; then, like I said before, you’re in diet-land. And your body is probably perfectly healthy with those extra couple of pounds. But there’s something in your own mind that’s just; you have a certain aesthetic that you’re aiming for. Which is fine.

I just; I think over time, at some point in your life, you will realize that that’s just not where you want to spend your energy. I don’t really know another way to say it. And I think it just comes with time. And hopefully some perspective. But I think at some point, maybe this is what happens. At some point, you just don’t have time to pay attention to that stuff. Because there is something else that becomes more important.

And I’m not at all judging that desire to count, or pay attention to that stuff. But I think for me, the times when I’ve been able to do that I honestly did not have something else that was big and important that I was trying to achieve or accomplish. And the moment that I have something big and important that I’m trying to achieve or accomplish, I don’t have time to f*ck around with counting sh*t that I’m eating. That’s basically where I’m at.

And I really think that that may not make sense to her in this moment. But at some point in time, she’ll look back on this and be like; oh. I’m at that place now. I just want to give every 20 and 30-something who feels like they need to be leaner a hug. Because I met someone recently who was at a talk I was at, and she was telling me about that as her goal. And I looked at her, and I’m like; oh my god, that was me 10-15 years ago. She was perfectly lean. She looked amazing, and she just had this in her mind that she was not “there yet.” And I’m like; holy f*ck. That was me. I was there.

I’m not saying any of this to belittle that. It’s this; like they’ll look back in 10 years and be like; oh, ok. I was just a little off. Like; don’t you look back at yourself and you’re like; why did I think that about myself? You know what I mean?

Juli Bauer: 100%. And I think that doing these she’s saying, whatever, 12-week course. Or trying to complete this whatever she was trying to do. This 12-week. I think that teaches you so much, if you’re doing macros, and it really can teach you how much portion you really need and what makes you feel satisfied and makes you feel good. And for me, I don’t ever weigh myself. And I know my weight goes up 5 pounds every week. It goes up and down, and it changes. And that’s fine. I’m never saying I need to lose 5 pounds. Because I don’t know what my weight even is.

And that’s what was a huge thing for me, was not weighing myself. Not saying; oh, I’ll be happy once I lose a certain amount of weight. I stopped thinking about a number. And I just started thinking about different goals of just feeling better. Sleeping better. Having more energy. Being able to surf behind a boat. Instead of putting all my energy into thinking about all my food, just like you said. You’re thinking about different things; you don’t have time for it. That’s when you can really find that balance.

But I think doing these challenges or whatever else, and seeing that you can do it, and you can find how much food makes you feel your best if you’re trying to figure that out, then you can dial it in without having to count those. Because you kind of have an eye of how much protein you need. And you’re like; oh, I just ate a bunch of vegetables and I’m still hungry. I’m going to have more vegetables. And you just find that balance over time. But I’m so glad I did whatever it was, 21-Day Sugar Detox, Whole30, Zone. I’m so glad I did those in the past, because they taught me so much. And they taught me what I don’t need to do now, if that makes sense.

Diane Sanfilippo: Yeah. And the other thing I want to say about it is that maybe people look at your and physically think; well of course you don’t care about it. Because you’re lean and fit and strong and healthy. And they might look at that and be like; easy for you to say. For people who don’t know your whole journey of where you’ve been. They might not understand the ups and downs of what you’ve been through.

I also want to say; I have been in a place where I was much leaner, and had visible abs, and also had adrenal fatigue {laughs} and lost my period. I’ve been through a lot, both in the realm of being super lean and currently where I’m at now, not super lean. Or even doing a lot of regular training because it’s not what feels best for my body in this moment. But I want people to know; young women who are listening. Young being anywhere in your; under 40 I would say is young. Because I’m still there. I’ll be 40 soon.

But you actually can get to that place that Juli is talking about. You’re like; I’m doing what feels best for me, whatever that means. And it’s not just about when you lose X amount of pounds, or when you hit X number of body fat percentage. I feel the exact same way as Juli is explaining. And I don’t physically look the same way. You know what I mean? We can all get to this place where our mind can just chill out and be like; ok, I’m doing what feels best for me right now for a variety of goals. If that makes sense.

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Diane Sanfilippo: We can all get there. And that doesn’t mean you get there when you hit a certain weight. Because I will look back on the last 10 years of my life, and whatever it was. Whatever level of leanness or not I was at, that did not dictate or determine how happy or proud I felt of anything I was doing. You know?

Juli Bauer: Yeah. Yeah. And you touched upon adrenal fatigue. You kind of talked about that. And I think that’s a great little leeway into this next question. Because this one is from Elizabeth Duthas. And she said; and I’ve talked about adrenal fatigue as well on my podcast and on my blog. And she asks, “How do you know when your body is in adrenal fatigue? I know you and Diane have both mentioned being in it before and changing your workouts or skipping them until your body normalizes? Just wondering how you knew?”

Diane Sanfilippo: So, in the past I knew because; I was training for a half marathon and I was going to cardio kickboxing like 4-5 days a week at the same time. But I was like 28 maybe. And I remember thinking; because there were Olympics going on. “Well, these Olympic athletes train this much. This isn’t that much.” {laughs} I literally was comparing myself to an Olympic athlete, whose job it is to train, and probably didn’t train the way that I was, for some reason. I was crazy.

I went to; so this is when I had visible abs and no boobs at all, basically, and was super lean. I lost my period for a couple of months, and I was like, “Sweet!” I mean, at the time I did not have any clue that that was so unhealthy.

But how I actually knew that something was wrong was I went to my cardio kickboxing class, TurboKick, and I couldn’t smile in the class. That was my most fun thing I ever was doing at the time. It was super dancey. It was not, like, boxing. It was more like dancing. And I remember I felt like I could not get my energy up.

It’s so poignant to me, that moment where I walked out of the class, because for whatever reason I was like, I just can’t laugh and smile right now. It’s just not coming to me. And the teacher, after, was like, is something wrong? Did I do something, whatever? I was like, no. Because I went to the same classes all the time, and she knew me. And I was like; no, I just can’t do it. I don’t know what’s going on. So that was; I hit that rock bottom in that moment. And I just had burned myself out. I was too; it was too much.

I don’t remember specifically dieting in a certain way at that point. I just know that I was overtraining and just pushing myself. And overtraining looks different for everyone. So you can’t compare. Everyone’s body is different.

And then recently; honestly I think recently it’s hit me that for a couple of years I’ve just really struggled with my energy levels. You wouldn’t know it, because if I’m at an event or whatever, I give 100% to everyone who’s there. But often after the event, I’m like; I can’t talk to anyone. {laughs} I need to go lie down and recover from that. Recover from touring for a month for the next couple of weeks. And part of that is normal. It is normal to need a lot of recovery when you give people your energy.

But something that I realized recently is that sometimes training does not make me feel better. And training should make you feel good. You should feel energized. You’re tired for a few minutes after the workout, but the rest of the day you shouldn’t feel flattened. And I was definitely feeling that way. I was exhausted, and what I would call painfully tired. And I just said to my husband recently. I was like; I haven’t said that in a long time. I’ve been feeling so much better lately, focusing on my sleep and actually not training much at all. And I want that to come back, I just need to figure out what that’s going to look like. Because it needs to be different so that my body gets the positive response from it instead of just feeling totally crushed. If that makes sense.

Juli Bauer: Yeah. Mine; I didn’t know I was going through adrenal fatigue until really after I cut myself off from competing in CrossFit. And mine was my workouts were suffering. I wasn’t getting any stronger. My hair was thinning. My sleep was sh*t. I was having bouts of depression on and off. And I just kept gaining weight, as well. So my body was telling me; calm the f*ck down. And I just wasn’t listening to it.

So I think if you just see your body; if you think you’re taking care of it in the best way possible, and things aren’t working how they’re supposed to, it’s time to take a different look at how you’re taking care of your body. Whether or not you’re eating enough, or you’re working out too much, or you have too much stress in your life and you’re working out when you shouldn’t be working out. Or you just have a stressful f*cking job and need to get out of that job. I see that far too often with friends and family.

Diane Sanfilippo: That’s a really good point, though. A lot of times, people think if they’re not sleeping well or they’re gaining weight or whatever, it’s like; I need to train more or eat less. It’s like, the signs feel like what you should do is opposite. You know what I mean? If you were gaining weight, then you would think most people feel like that approach should be to eat less and exercise more, or whatever. And it’s like; actually, the reason for it is this really high stress state of your body. And that’s something that hopefully people will learn and be able to tune into more over time. It’s a hard one. It’s really hard to identify that.

Juli Bauer: It totally is. Well I want to do this question, because I think this is just out of the norm of what we’ve been talking about. So it just goes a different direction, which is fun. So this is Sa Carrie. “I would love to hear a conversation about being two successful married women who don’t want kids. How to deal with outside stressors, keeping relationships with friends who have children, etc.” So. I actually had; do you know who Lisa Bilyeu is?

Diane Sanfilippo: No, I don’t.

Juli Bauer: She’s the creator of Quest bars, Quest nutrition. She has a couple of other businesses. I had her on, and she talks about not having kids, and they made that decision, and talking about that. And so it was a really interesting conversation, just because I don’t have many friends who don’t have kids or don’t want to have kids. They’re all kind of going in that direction, so sometimes I feel a little bit alone. Especially because I don’t know if I want to have kids in the future. I’m only 29 years old, so that could still change.

But how do you feel in this day and age where so many people have kids, or expect you to have kids when you get married. How do you feel about it?

Diane Sanfilippo: So, since I was young, I’ve never wanted kids. I’ve always had that feeling that; not so much will I be missing out. But I don’t know. I’ve just never really had that feeling that I wanted them. I think because I’ve never wanted them, or always said that I didn’t, my mom had no expectation of me {laughs} or when we got married or anything. Literally never said; when are going to have kids? Because she knew from way before that that was not something on my list.

But, I think most people these days might have that expectation, but also are a little more understanding of that not being something that everyone wants to do. And I don’t know. I mean, I think it goes back to personality, as well. I don’t really care if anybody is bothered by it. I just kind of; that’s not what I wanted. And when Scott and I got together and we talked about it; I don’t think he was as strongly a no on it, but I think he was like, could go either way basically.

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Diane Sanfilippo: I mean, we both kind of said we might reevaluate or think about it when we’re 40, which is coming up in like 4 months. {laughs} And I still just don’t have any strong desire towards it.

In terms of remaining friends with people who have kids; it’s definitely a challenge. I don’t know; our friends who live nearby who have kids, most of them have pretty young kids at this point. Some of them very, very new. We really don’t see them that often anymore. And I don’t take that personally, either. We just have different things that we’re doing in life. And it is hard. It definitely is a challenging thing to continue to relate to other people when your life is so, so different.

We continue to seek out friends who are a little bit older and maybe don’t have kids. Our friends Kristen Beemer and Mike Beemer out in the East Bay here; you guys know Living, Loving Paleo. They’re not going to have kids, from what she told me. And I don’t think that’s a secret; I think she said that I wouldn’t be like airing her take publicly. So I’m sure we’ll continue to be in touch and spend time as time goes on and we all get older. But it is tough.

Juli Bauer: It is.

Diane Sanfilippo: I don’t really have a good answer for it. Even 10 years later, I can tell you Juli, if you’re pretty much like; I don’t want to have kids. You probably will still not want to have them later. But maybe you will. You still have that door open if you want it. {laughs}

Juli Bauer: Yeah. You never know. I’ve just never had that feeling of yearning for a child. And knowing that your whole life is going to be flipped upside down, and it’s hard to imagine that when you really enjoy your life. And I enjoy being able to leave when I want, and to do whatever I want. And to know that your life is going to change. And your relationship with your husband is going to change is a very kind of frightening thing to me. I really enjoy my life and my life with my husband, so how do you take that step of knowing that could change? That’s kind of hard for me.

And I’ve seen my friends who just had a kid, and I don’t ever hear from them anymore. And that’s kind of a sad thing. And I’ve heard friends who are like; oh, all my friends had kids. And we were like, I want to hang out with my friends still, so let’s have kids and did that.

Diane Sanfilippo: Ohh.

Juli Bauer: I’m like; well I don’t want to have kids just because my friends are doing it! I want to have kids because I want to give this child an awesome life. And I just haven’t felt that. As you know, as a person who runs their own business, it takes all of your attention all the time. And you almost feel guilty when you’re not giving it your full attention, because this is your livelihood. So if you’re not putting all your time into something, you may be not making as much in return, and you’re not getting your face out there and getting in contact with new people. So imagine cutting that part of your business off to give someone a new live is a hard pill for me to swallow. So that’s kind of what I go through, as just a personal insight for this person asking this question.

Diane Sanfilippo: Yeah. Having it as a business; I actually think having a business. And there are plenty of moms who are also entrepreneurs, and I’m sure they understand this to an even greater degree. But having a business is a lot like having a kid. Because it’s not the same emotional attachment.

Well, look. For those of you who are listening are like; no it’s not! Listen. I get that I don’t have kids so I don’t know that feeling. I know what people tell me, right? And what you’re describing is the attention that never turns off because this is our business and our livelihood and it’s who we are. It’s not just our business. And I think there is an element of that and I have a lot of moms who have kids and businesses tell me that it is very similar. This feeling of; my attention always needs to be on it.

I go on vacation, I don’t not work when I’m on vacation. Because to me it is like a child. I can’t just not pay attention to my business just because I’m deciding to take some time away. It’s not like I don’t ever relax. It’s just; this is my business, and if I don’t take care of it, no one else will. {laughs} So there’s that element of it.

But I’m old enough and wise enough to understand that there are parts of being a parent that you never understand until you are a parent. And I’m totally fine with that. And I think part of what we’re trying to do with our businesses and the different ways that we do it is to reach people and help them live better lives and be happier in their own lives. And I feel like even if I’m not having a kid and teaching them about the world and interact with it and be a good human, I think at the very least I can do that through my work and reach people at different stages of their life and make a difference in their lives and reach as many people as I can with whatever it is that I’m talking about.

Like, Oprah is definitely a role model for me in that way. Where it’s like; you know what? Do some good things with your life. And if you’re not going to procreate and impart that wisdom and love onto a child, at least you can kind of share it out there and impact people in different ways.

Juli Bauer: Do you ever get the question of someone saying, “Who is going to take care of you when you’re old?”

Diane Sanfilippo: Oh, I definitely wonder who that’s going to be.

Juli Bauer: I get that question all the time. And so I always just say, that’s why I’m saving money to put myself in a home where someone will take care of me.

Diane Sanfilippo: And people also ask if I have health insurance, and I’m like; no. But that’s why I’m saving money to pay for things I might need. Because no, we don’t have health insurance. {laughs} That’s a whole other…

Juli Bauer: Stupid. F*cking health insurance. F*cking health insurance!

Diane Sanfilippo: Yeah.

Juli Bauer: Ok. I only want to do a couple more questions, and I just want to keep them light and just fun. I like this one, I think it’s just a light and airy one. Drew Anna is, “What is your favorite part of living in San Francisco? Was there any difficulty adjusting?”

Diane Sanfilippo: So I actually have lived here a few separate times. I came here right after college. I worked for the GAP at their headquarters. And that was the only job I applied for out of college. And I was like; I’m going to move to San Francisco! I just always wanted to live here. Even though I had never been here before. That was back in like 2000.

So no, it’s not hard to adjust. Leaving family and friends or my gym was definitely the hardest part. But the best; the food, and the weather, and the views kind of altogether. But the food is just so good. I don’t know. {laughs} As crazy as it sounds, definitely the food. The food and the weather. Just everything about being here. It’s beautiful here. So I love it here.

Juli Bauer: Is there anything you don’t like about San Francisco?

Diane Sanfilippo: I mean, there are some things I don’t like about it. Like, it’s expensive. And you know, it’s urban. So there’s city issues. People walking by and breaking car windows for no reason, you know? That kind of stuff.

Juli Bauer: {laughs} So fun.

Diane Sanfilippo: Stuff that wouldn’t happen in the burbs, necessarily. But you know, take the good with the bad.

Juli Bauer: Yeah. Ok let’s do this last one, because it’s a couple of different questions. And this is from Thinsy. “Favorite non-food.” We’ll do these three. “Favorite non-food? Favorite non-fitness? And favorite non-beauty product?” What? That doesn’t make sense.

Diane Sanfilippo: Like favorite product? Like, life enhancing things?

Juli Bauer: I have no idea. Favorite non-food? What? Is there anything that’s non-food that’s my favorite?

Diane Sanfilippo: {laughing}

Juli Bauer: No. No. And she also said, “Anything that you can’t live without? Any cool gadget or something like that? Favorite holiday present?” She had just a lot of questions.

Diane Sanfilippo: Like favorite things kind of deal?

Juli Bauer: Yeah. Do you have any favorite things that you’re loving right now? I don’t know if you ever do podcasts or posts about that. But if there’s anything; it can be whatever you want. I’m turning her question into my own.

Diane Sanfilippo: I’m kind of into ponchos and, I guess like a blanket scarf situation. But wearing it more like a shawl because I’m just not equipped or skilled. I know you have a tutorial on the blanket scarf. But I’m into a poncho. I have this poncho I bought. It’s like a cashmere fancy pants one I got in Italy. Which sounds so {laughs} it sounds so fancy. But it’s not. I’m into that. I’m into the cozy, just throw it over. I don’t know. I think I look cute, but maybe you can tell me otherwise! {laughing}

Juli Bauer: Throw it and go.

Diane Sanfilippo: I don’t know about fashion.

Juli Bauer: Love it. I love a poncho.

Diane Sanfilippo: OK.

Juli Bauer: I love a scarf.

Diane Sanfilippo: I’m into that right now.

Juli Bauer: Ok. What else? Anything else you’re loving? Any food products that you’re bananas over right now?

Diane Sanfilippo: So, I just started. I’ve done this before but I started doing it again. And this is a super good 21-Day Sugar Detox hack, or tip. Cacao butter.

Juli Bauer: So good.

Diane Sanfilippo: So basically it’s just the fat. It’s like white chocolate without the sweetener and the dairy in it. So it’s cacao butter, cocoa butter, whatever you want to call it. You can actually blend that into your coffee, and it tastes chocolatey and it’s a little fatty. It’s basically pure fat. But you’re not getting the sugar. And I’m kind of into that right now.

Juli Bauer: Yum!

Diane Sanfilippo: I’m into blending a couple little shakes of that or a spoonful of that. So I’m into that right now for sure.

Juli Bauer: Is that with hot coffee or cold coffee your blending it with? Because I always see you with iced.

Diane Sanfilippo: I’m blending it with hot.

Juli Bauer: OK. Just because of the fat.

Diane Sanfilippo: But I’ve been drinking hot coffee for a couple of weeks, and then this morning I had iced again. But I think that would only work with hot. I think if you tried to blend into iced, it would just be…

Juli Bauer: Chunks.

Diane Sanfilippo: Chippy bits. Yeah. {laughs}

Juli Bauer: Which isn’t the worst thing, to get little chunks through your straw and you just get to eat some food while you’re drinking your coffee.

Diane Sanfilippo: Yeah.

Juli Bauer: Not the worst.

Diane Sanfilippo: Like in a smoothie. Yeah.

Juli Bauer: Oh, I’m going to try that. That sounds awesome.

Diane Sanfilippo: Yeah, it’s good. Because I like white chocolate, but obviously white chocolate is sugary. So, it’s pretty good.

Juli Bauer: Yum. Ok, I’m going to definitely try that.

Diane Sanfilippo: Ok good.

Juli Bauer: Ok, sweet. That’s, I’m going to cut. Oh, well this last one.

Diane Sanfilippo: {laughing}

Juli Bauer: Ok just one more. And this is Whole Paleo Annie. “Any hints on what the new Balanced bice, Bites.” Jesus Juli.

Diane Sanfilippo: {laughs}

Juli Bauer: “Balanced Bites spice blends will be or when they will be released?”

Diane Sanfilippo: Yes.

Juli Bauer: So tell people about your spice blends, just in case they haven’t heard of them.

Diane Sanfilippo: So Balanced Bites spices started. When I; actually before I wrote Practical Paleo, I used to mix up spices in my own kitchen. I did like rosemary salt and sage salt. Which those aren’t available to purchase, but the recipes are in Practical Paleo. And then when I wrote Practical Paleo, I’m like; well if people would just blend these things ahead of time, then this would take a lot less time while they’re cooking. So I made spice blends back when I released that book, in the book.

And then to release the second edition, I was like; it would be really cool if people could actually not only just make them quickly, but even faster just click and buy them. So I decided to actually make them so people could buy them. Not personally; I mean, they’re made in an organic facility.

So you can buy them. You can go to and there’s a link to get to the spices. Or Balanced Bites spices and you can definitely find them there. Eventually they’ll be on Amazon, but I just need a minute. I realized I can’t launch four projects at once, apparently.

But new blends; so the existing blends, there’s a Diner blend, which is amazing for making home fries or any kind of protein or veggies. There’s Taco blend. There are so many; I have 8 blends that I launched originally. New blends, you actually can get sort of a sneak peak at a few of them in the new book. So in the 21-Day Sugar Detox Daily Guide, there’s actually four of the blends that are coming out soon. And then there’s also a nightshade free Taco blend that’s in Practical Paleo that will be out eventually as well.

So hopefully those will be out I would say in the next one to two months. There are some things I needed to finalize on them that I couldn’t get approvals on because I was busy writing this book and getting this done. But you can definitely check them out in the 21-Day Sugar Detox Daily Guide in the spice blends.

Juli Bauer: Awesome. And when will that book be available, and where can people find it?

Diane Sanfilippo: So the book formally releases January 2nd. We start the first detox of the year January 8th, which is a Monday. I didn’t want to start it on Monday the 1st, just because I think people need a minute to make the decision and then prep.

Juli Bauer: Yeah. Especially after New Years Eve night.

Diane Sanfilippo: You’re not going to start this detox that day or the next day and be successful. I really don’t think you are. I mean, maybe you are. I’m not going to shoot you down. So because I help you through the predetox week, I wanted to give you that time.

But it’s available officially January 2nd, and you can get it anywhere books are sold. And I’ll also be on quite an aggressive tour, which you are joining me on in Denver, which is going to be super fun. I’m excited about that. But I’m going to be literally all over the country. California, New Jersey, Philly, DC, Atlanta, Nashville, Phoenix. I’m trying to rattle them off because I’ll probably be at a city near you. So just head over to my Instagram and check it out. You’ll be able to see where I will be. But I’m literally going to be almost everywhere except; I’m not going to be in the Midwest, I don’t think, and the super, what’s it; New England. Just because it’s winter and flights might get canceled. But hopefully I’ll see you guys at one of my events. That would be super fun.

Juli Bauer: Well, I will be there, is it January 14th? Is that our date together?

Diane Sanfilippo: I wish I knew.

Juli Bauer: I know.

Diane Sanfilippo: I forget.

Juli Bauer: I’m pretty sure it is. I think it’s January 14th. So if you guys are listening and you’re in Denver, you’ll have to come check out our little book tour stop. I’m just tagging along, just really hanging out with Diane more than anything. But check that out. Go to her Instagram, you can find all the information there. And go find the 21-Day Sugar Detox Daily Guide on Amazon on January 2nd you said?

Diane Sanfilippo: It’s available now for preorder and it releases. So if anybody orders it now, it will mail out right away.

Juli Bauer: Oh yeah. Go f*cking preorder it! Go get it. In your cart. Get it, and it will come straight to your doorstep. Because it is beautiful. I’ve had it on my counter, and it has these beautiful little walnuts. I keep thinking I have walnuts all over my counter, and I want to pick them up and eat them.

Diane Sanfilippo: {laughing}

Juli Bauer: But the book is beautiful, and she’s done such a great job. Just like all of your other books. So thank you so much for being on here and answering people’s questions. If I missed any of your questions, you know you can always ask Diane and she is happy to answer them. She is always incredibly helpful. I ask her random questions all the time and she helps me.

Diane Sanfilippo: {laughs}

Juli Bauer: So, go over to Diane’s Instagram page. And you’re Diane Sanfilippo there, right?

Diane Sanfilippo: Yep. Just at my name.

Juli Bauer: Perfect. They can find you there! Thank you so much for being on.

Diane Sanfilippo: Thanks for having me.

Juli Bauer: Of course. You just hold on the line. Everybody, you know what to do. Rate, review, subscribe. The whole she-bang. And I hope to hear you; I don’t know. I don’t even know why I’m trying to end this cool. Just come over to the podcast next week. I’ll talk to you guys soon. Bye.

Today on the podcast, I’m talking to New York Times Best Selling Author Diane Sanfilippo. Diane was one of the first people I started following when I first started eating paleo and she really helped change my life when I […] Today on the podcast, I’m talking to New York Times Best Selling Author Diane Sanfilippo. Diane was one of the first people I started following when I first started eating paleo and she really helped change my life when I […] PaleOMG Uncensored yes 1:24:44
Listener Questions – Episode 64: PaleOMG Uncensored Podcast Sat, 23 Dec 2017 13:32:57 +0000 6 Answering your fun questions on the podcast today!! Thank you to everyone who wrote in on instagram and left a fun question to answer! If I missed yours, feel free to come over to and I’ll be sure to […] Answering your fun questions on the podcast today!! Thank you to everyone who wrote in on instagram and left a fun question to answer! If I missed yours, feel free to come over to and I’ll be sure to answer it there!


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Episode 64 Transcription!

This is Juli Bauer from PaleOMG and you are listening to PaleOMG Uncensored.

1. Listener Questions: Random questions [15:21]
2. Listener Questions: Food [45:33]
3. Listener Questions: Makeup and skincare [1:03:54]
4. Listener Questions: Fitness [1:10:55]

Juli Bauer: Well hey there. How’s it going? I missed you so much. I am sitting on my couch at the moment looking at our Christmas tree that is slowly dying. Thankfully, because I hate it. It’s really sad for me to say that. Because while I was gone in Mexico, I went to Tulum for my best friend’s 30th birthday vacation. And I came home last week, on Tuesday, and my husband had already left out of town on Monday. So I came home; he was out of town. And I came home to the house decorated. Because we were both out of town every day. And he decorated the house. He pulled the Christmas decorations out. He got a tree. He decorated the tree. It was so cute.

So I get home at night. I have to leave the next day. And then I’m gone for three days. I come back, and the Christmas tree is on the floor. She fell over. So luckily my sister-in-law was here, so she helps me put the tree back up. She peaces out. An hour later, I’m lying on the couch; the tree falls over again. So I after I cleaned this up twice, I was completely over it. Especially because my husband was still out of town and I had to clean it up.

I told him this whole real Christmas tree life is over. We’re getting a fake Christmas tree. Then this fake Christmas tree can already be lit up, already look beautiful, and we don’t have to worry about watering it. We don’t have to worry about it shedding on the floor. We don’t have to worry about throwing it out the day after Christmas. Maybe the day of Christmas; let’s clean up early here. We don’t have to worry about it. That’s what I want. And I think he’s into it now. I think I’ve talked him into it. Because, I’m looking at the floor right now. And there’s sh*t everywhere. There’s sh*t everywhere. I’m just so not into it.

Speaking of not being into things; let’s talk about Mexico. Because Mexico was a complete disaster. Sad to say it. So my girlfriend, who it was her 30th birthday. She found a house in Tulum. It looked like a super cute house. And I didn’t know anything about Tulum before I went there, other than what people told me of restaurant recommendations.

So we get to our place, not in the greatest area. Which I don’t care, but if I want to be on a beach vacation, I want to be right on the beach. That’s just personally me. So we’re not in the greatest location. But the place is really cute. We’re down for whatever. There are 6 people on this trip, and we have a kitchen, and we have an outdoor rooftop patio, and whatever we can cook our own meals.

So day two into being at this apartment, not only; in Mexico, dogs are running free everywhere. And there’s sh*t in the streets all over, so you have to watch where you’re walking constantly. But then we get into our apartment on day two, and it reeks like sh*t. Like sewer line is just filling into our apartment. It wasn’t, but that’s what it smelled like. Portapotty central. We couldn’t figure out why it smelled so bad! So not only were we now stepping in sh*t, but then our apartment smells like sh*t. Whatever, you don’t really hang out in your place that often anyway.

So we’re having a great time. We go to kind of near the ruins, and go to a beach club on the first real day. And I had shrimp ceviche, because I live in a land locked state. So I don’t do seafood that often. So you think you’re by the beach, sh*t is safe because you have your feet in the and. You think it would be safe to eat the seafood. And I was incredibly wrong.

So the next day, we go to; I don’t even know how to pronounce it. It’s like X-E-L-H-A. I don’t know, something. It’s like this huge water park arena that’s in the ocean. I don’t know; really cool. Really pretty. And it’s like all you can eat and drink. So you know the food is going to be sketchy. And my stomach starts to hurt when we’re here. But I can still eat. I can still drink; but I’m not drinking alcohol at this point, because I’m like; I feel weird. I don’t know what’s going on.

And then, still feeling kind of weird, but we go to get curry. We go to the Thai place. Which was f*cking awesome, and I wish I could have gone during the day, because it’s like you walk out onto the beach. And the Thai food was fantastic. It was at the Mezzanine hotel. But I go to sleep; I wake up the next morning, at probably 4 in the morning, and I have truly the worst stomach pains I’ve ever had in my life. And I’m allergic to gluten, and I grew up in and out of the hospital because I had such bad stomach aches, stomach issues, digestive issues. And this was far worse than any other pain I’ve felt. It felt like someone was taking a serrated knife, sticking it into my belly button, and just waving it back and forth.

And it was like; I always talk to my girlfriends who have had babies, and they were finally like; f*ck, give me the drugs. Because this sucks so bad. And that’s what it felt like. Because they talk about their contractions; they’re like a minute apart. And so as soon as the contraction starts to kind of go down a little bit and you’re about to get a breath in, the pain starts up again. And so they finally say, f*ck it give me the epidural. That’s what these pains were like.

I was on all fours, just yelling f*ck. Just screaming. I was in such pain. I didn’t know what I was going to do. I’m crying because I’m like; ok, I’m just going to have to go to the hospital. I’m in so much physical pain.

So that whole day; all the things that go along with having food poisoning, they occur. I don’t need to get into detail here; use your lovely imagination. And finally there’s nothing left in my body. I can’t drink water. Because, of course in Mexico, you’re not supposed to drink the water. So you have bottled water, and I’m scared that the bottled water is f*cked up too. I’m like; what is happening?!

So finally, I take a taxi and meet my friends who are at the beach in Tulum. The cute part of Tulum, where you want to be in, where it has the cute hotels and boutiques and restaurants and beach clubs and what I picture as a Mexico vacation. So I make it there. I lie there for a good hour; can’t do anything. And then they’re about to go walk around town, and I’m like; I’m going back home to go to bed. I went to bed at like 6 p.m., woke up the next morning at 6 a.m. so I slept for like 12 hours.

I think at that point; I forget the days, but at that point it’s time to go home. I’m still in pain. But I have no nutrients in my body, so nothing’s happening. And I still just get these sharp pains. So we had a shuttle back to the airport at like noon, and our flight was at 5. We get there super early, and two of the guys we were with are like; oh, maybe we should try to get on an earlier flight. So he goes up there, and he’s like an A-list member of Southwest, and they’re like; it’s going to be $205. And he was like, I’m cool, I’m not paying that. And I’m like, I will. I will pay whatever.

I’m like, I don’t want to eat at this airport, spend extra money on food that might make me sick. I can’t even listen to Spanish music because it makes me sick to my stomach at this point. When I got home, I had to turn the radio off because Despacito was playing, and I’m like; that’s making me sick to my stomach.

So I go up, and I’m like; get me on this plane. I’ll pay whatever. And he’s like it’s, it’s going to be $275 for you. I’m like, I don’t care, here’s my credit card. Get me on this goddamn plane. Because it was boarding. It was like 45 minutes; I guess it was 30 minutes then. 30 minutes, they’re starting to board. I say whatever, I’ll pay whatever. So he starts running my credit card, and it’s not working. And he’s like; hold on. And he’s making all these calls. And nothing’s happening. And I’m like; dammit. Am I just standing here for nothing, I could be sitting down somewhere taking a nap? He finally was like, I can’t get the credit card machine to work, so I’m just going to let you on the flight. And he just lets me on. And I was so happy.

So I got home at 5 p.m. instead of 8 p.m. So happy. I got a pizza, because it was the only thing that sounded good. Gluten free pizza. I was able to hang out with my dog. And then I was so happy to be home earlier; like 3 hours earlier. Because my husband’s uncle recently passed away. I got home on Tuesday, and his funeral was Thursday in Nebraska. So I woke up the next morning and had to drive to Nebraska with my sister-in-law and meet my husband out there, because he was out of town. So we had a funeral to go to, and then I drove back on Friday.

So last week was absolutely bananas. So crazy. It was not many workouts. Lots of sitting. Lots of crying. Lots of feeling sick. It was a weird week. It was really weird. But it was great to see Brian’s family; because he has a really big, close family. His uncle has 9 kids, they have kids. Picture home alone with all their kids; that’s what their life is like. But now in adult form. So it was fun to hang out with everybody and see my mother-in-law and my brother-in-law. And that was nice.

And then this week was off to a great start because I filmed more cooking videos. I filmed cooking videos about a month ago, and then just filmed some more this month. I have 6 new ones coming out, and I’m trying to keep up with more and more cooking videos. So let me know if you like those, and definitely check them out on my blog. I have under the food tab, I have a cooking videos tab so you can see exactly which ones are cooking videos. And some are me, and some are those overhead shots that we know so well on Instagram. So yeah. That’s what’s been going on here.

But something else that happened last week that was quite startling, because I’ve never had this happen. So, I’ve had this friend at the gym, and he always talks about this couple that he follows, this fitness couple. And this girl always gets dick pics. Guys always send her dick pics in the messages of Instagram. And he was like; that much happen to you all the time. And he’s talking about how the husband puts these guys on blast when his wife gets these dick pics. And I’m like, no. That doesn’t ever happen to me. I get dudes who write “hello” and that’s it. Or hi. It’s like foreign dudes, and that’s the only thing they know how to say. It’s like; what are you doing? And I just decline those messages right away.

But last week, I wake up. I always grab my phone. Gotta pee, go straight to the toilet. And what do I do? Of course I look at my phone. What else are you supposed to do on the toilet? And what is waiting for me? Usually it’s; so Instagram, when you open messages, it blocks the image for a second, and you have to tap on the image. So it blocks it, and I usually tap on it. And it’s like; Juli’s gingerbread banana bread. Or Juli’s cookies. Or Juli’s pizza spaghetti pie. No, you know what it is this time? A guy’s wiener! You guys. Seeing someone’s penis that you do not want to see is quite disturbing. And who does that?!

At first, I wanted to; because I went to his profile, and I wanted to screenshot his profile and put it on my Instagram stories, and be like, “Block this guy. He sends nudes.” And it’s sad, because this is a good-looking guy! I’m like, what are you doing? What are you doing! No words. Just a mere wiener selfie. Naked. So disturbing. If you are a person that thinks it’s ok to send dick pics, which there are probably 3 guys listening to this podcast. So you 3; don’t. Because wieners are disgusting. They’re not cute. They look like Squidward from SpongeBob SquarePants. Nobody likes to see them. Maybe some do, but Juli Bauer Roth does not. No. Oh my god! It was so disturbing. Eww, I’m so grossed out. I’m grossed out thinking about it. Let’s start talking about questions.

This week is the listener questions episode. Which I’m sure you understood that by the title of this podcast. Sorry, I’ve got an itch on the nose. So I asked you guys on Instagram for your lovely questions. And you guys sent in some. There were about 130 questions, so I’m not getting to all of them. Some I’ve already answered in previous ones, or I have a podcast on that topic. So definitely look back at other podcast episodes. And feel free, if I don’t answer your question I apologize. You can always come to and ask a question there. I answer questions on my blog much quicker than Instagram. So please come over to my blog and send me a comment there, and I’d be happy to answer it.

1. Listener Questions: Random questions [15:21]

So I’m going to start off with some random questions. I have a makeup and skincare section. A food and fitness section. So these are kind of just random ones. Kind of all throughout. So let’s start off with Hmmm. Ham. It’s so easy to pronounce all these Instagram names. “Can you talk about your decision to have a maid?” She asks, or he asks. Whoever this is. “How often, and have you found it has a huge positive impact on your marriage. More time together, no cleaning resentment, etc.”

So, I am so happy I got a maid. I have her come every two weeks, and it has been awesome. Because, obviously, I work in the kitchen all day every day, and I do all the cleaning. All the cooking and all the cleaning. So having someone reclean that area, and deep clean it, is freaking awesome. And the number one thing; I don’t care about cleaning toilets. I don’t care about doing the floors, cleaning the kitchen. But I do not want to clean the shower. That is my number one pet peeve. I feel like it never gets clean. And then you’re stuck in this box of fumes. I hate it. So having a cleaning lady has been awesome.

And I definitely think it’s helped with our marriage with getting things clean and not feeling like I have to do it all, or asking him to do it. Because he works 6 days a week. So its been awesome. Highly recommend it, if you can put the extra money into it. I think it’s the best.

Ok this next one. CM schmelto. “If you could take a spring time 5 to 7-day vacation with your husband in the contiguous US, where would you go?”

Contiguous, eh? Dammit. Well, in the springtime, we are planning to go to Santa Barbara. I love Santa Ynez. I want to go back to Santa Ynez Valley. I went there; I forget. Maybe in the fall. And it was the best. Loved it so, so much. So I want to go on a springtime vacation, which I think we’ll have one planned in spring, to Santa Barbara. And then I want to take my husband to Santa Ynez, and he can see some of the places I went to when I was there last. So that’s where I would go. Warm, beautiful, awesome vacation.

MC blah-blah-burn. I hate these. Why can’t it just be like Bob? “Loved your podcast with Mind Pump Media. If you could do a regular collaborative pod-swap, who would it be on the top of your list?”

So if you haven’t listened to Mind Pump, go check out Mind Pump. They are freaking awesome. I flew out to San Jose and recorded a podcast with the guys of Mind Pump. They have a full studio; really awesome building. And that episode was fun, because I feel like we went deep. We talked about things that normally don’t get talked about on any other podcast that I’ve recorded. So I think it was a great, kind of get to know me a little bit better, if you have any interest in that. And they have such a great podcast. I freaking love them. I haven’t listened to their podcast in a couple of weeks now, as I’ve just been crazy busy and sick. But they’re awesome.

I think working with them on a regular basis would be awesome, because they’re so intelligent, and they’re so good at talking constantly. So I loved listening to them. If I could do a swap, I’d love to chat with Kaitlyn Bristowe, of the Bachelorette. Because I love the Bachelor and Bachelorette.

Can we just talk about how excited I am for January 1st to come along so the new season of the Bachelor comes out and I can talk sh*t on my blog again! Ugh! I can’t wait. I know some people don’t give a f*ck, but I don’t care.

Diane Winn. Thanks for having a simple name, Diane. “Are you going to start putting in home décor on your content? I think on your blog you have your bedroom and it’s so cute.”

Yes, I need to do more. It’s hard because I kind of feel like I have my kitchen and dining room and living room all done. And the bedroom is kind of all done. So I just don’t know what I would do next. I don’t know. I feel like I’m not that great with décor. But maybe, I hope to do more décor stuff. For sure. I definitely hope to.

Brooke Maria. “What are your top three favorite podcasts to listen to?”

So, definitely Wine and Crime. That is high up there. Wine and Crime I listen to as soon as the episode comes out. My Favorite Murder. Off the Vine with Kaitlyn Bristowe. I love Mouthing Off with Olivia Caridi. This is more Bachelor stuff, so if you hate Bachelor stuff, then don’t listen to those. Obviously Mind Pump. Reality Steve is another, but they have spoilers so just a heads up. I heard some, so I kind of know what happens, dammit. I know this is more than 3 to 5 but I don’t care.

I love How I Built this; one of my favorite podcasts. So fun to listen to. These people come on and the woman who created Spanx and Mark Cuban. There are so many different cool people on there, so highly recommend that one. I think that’s all I have. That’s all I have right now.

I did love, what was it? Maybe Dear John? It is something John. I listened to that podcast. Oh, Dirty John. Sorry. I forgot about that one. Go listen to Dirty John. It’s a kind of short one. I think it only has like, I don’t know, 10 episodes or something, but it’s a really good podcast. I like that one. Because I feel like; it’s this guy who is a compulsive liar and completely fucks over people. And I feel like if you’re a woman you’ve gone through that. I’m sure men have too. But we’ve all been f*cked over and completely fooled. So I like that one. It’s interesting.

This one is Mr. Salsiaberry. “Would you ever give Jackson a furry sibling. If so, what kind?”

I would love to give Jackson a sibling. And we always go back and forth. And we’ve thought about multiple times when dogs have come up. There was an English bulldog that came up. Then there was a French bulldog that came up. And then my husband looked for bigger dogs; he wanted a bigger dog and was looking at the adoption place nearby. And it’s just hard, because I travel on a regular basis. And Jackson is kind of a dick around other dogs sometimes. And he’s very territorial with food. He’s attacked multiple dogs.

And when I say attacked, he never bites them, but it sounds like he’s going to. The fur comes up; he just becomes a total dick. So it’s like; do we want to deal with making them like each other for a while and just deal with the transition? I don’t want to at this point. I work all through the day, so that would be a pain in the ass. But I would love to get him another friend and get another dog. It would just have to be timing is right. But we don’t have a preference in dog. I am always down for more French bulldogs, for sure, because Jackson is my favorite. So to have two, f*ck yeah. But I love all dogs at this point. As long as they’re cute and nice.

Kay Bush 2014. “If you could travel anywhere, where would you go?”

At the moment, I really have New Zealand on my bucket list. I would love to go to New Zealand. Spain. I’d love to go to French Polynesia; that’s high on the list. I still want to go to Canada; I’ve never been to Canada. Brazil would be awesome. Those are kind of high on my list at this point. Places I want to go. People I want to see.

Lucy Whole Foodie. “I was listening to an old episode, one about you and your husband. In that episode you mentioned that someone in your gym bet you $100 that you would be pregnant by Thanksgiving this year. Did you ever get that $100?”

Well, to specify, I bet two people in the gym; the owner of our gym, Jason Kelly, that I’ve had ton this podcast, that motherf*cker. And this guy named Derrick. And they both bet that I would be pregnant by Thanksgiving this year. I have no babies in my body. Nothing. Nope. Nu-huh. I’m not pregnant. So they both owe me $100.

Jason is the cheapest human being I’ve ever known. So he will never pay. Lying little sh*t. And Derrick, I haven’t seen. Because he goes to morning classes, and I no longer coach. So, don’t worry. I’ll keep prying. I’ll keep mentioning. Maybe I’ll steal the money. But a bet’s a bet. I hate liars. Aren’t liars the worst? Don’t bet something if you’re not going to actually do it. Motherf*cker.

Amanda M. Nelson, love the name solid. “What life advice would you give your younger followers that you wish you had heard yourself? It doesn’t have to be health and fitness.”

I would; well first health and fitness; stop obsessing over your body and your weight. Stop. Because life is so much more beautiful when you don’t f*cking obsess all the time. And you can create so many more friendships, relationships, and happy moments when you’re not obsessing about your weight.

And then I would also say, don’t listen to everybody else. And luckily I didn’t. But I’ve had so many people tell me that what I do is stupid, or I should go into a different direction. And that work should be miserable, and you should be unhappy, and that’s what a job is. And I don’t live that life at all. And I wish more people said kind of go with what your gut says and do what inspires you. So that’s what I would tell them. Because sure you’re going to fail, but you’re going to learn so much more when you’re doing exactly what you love. And you’ll be inspired to do other things because you’re doing exactly what you love. You don’t have to live a miserable life. Just because maybe you’ve seen other people live that way, you don’t have to.

Mattie Jackson. “What are you getting for Christmas this year?” Oh, she has a couple of questions. So let’s start with this one.

I’m not getting anything for Christmas this year. Thank god, we are not doing presents. I’m not a person who likes receiving gifts, and I don’t like giving gifts. Unless it’s the perfect thing, the perfect timing. Like, my sister-in-law, it was her birthday and we were talking about microblading, and she wanted that, so I bought her microblading for her birthday. Boom. But I’m not a big gift giver. And we’re going to Cabo for New Years, and that’s our gift to our family. So we’re not doing any Christmas gifts. It’s f*cking awesome.

“What are your all-time favorite go-to exercises in strength training and CrossFit?”

I love snatches and overhead squats. Those are probably some of my favorite.

“What are your favorite ever workout leggings?”

I love Lululemon high times wonder unders. I mean, those always work amazing and fit great no matter what.

“Favorite hydrating eye cream?”

I love L’occitane. Their eye serum. And I love Tula. They have a couple of eye serums that I use. I love both of those.

“Do you eat protein bars?”

Not often. I have some Larabars in emergencies, but I try not to eat protein bars that often. Because I just get sugar addicted.

“Does it really matter if meat is organic and grass-fed?”

Absolutely. You should only be buying grass-fed, grass finished, hormone free, antibiotic free. It is so incredibly important.

And that is actually a great leeway into our sponsor this week. If you haven’t heard me talk about Butcher Box, I love them. And as you know, I’ve talked about them a million times. I talk about them on my Instagram, on my Instagram stories. I always do the unboxing of my Butcher Box order. It’s just the best.

You should listen to my episode with Mike, of Butcher Box. He’s the creator. He talks about why organic and grass-fed and grass finished is so important. It is huge. It is so important. You are what you eat. So if you’re eating a sick cow who’s been fed corn and random ass sh*t, you’re eating that as well. You’re putting that into your body. And that’s probably why we have so many health issues at this point in our world. Because the food that we’re generally eating, at the normal grocery store that’s not taken care of is what we’re putting into our body. Which is causing so many health issues as we’re moving forward.

And Butcher Box is totally different than what you find at your normal grocery store. They source and deliver to your doorstep the best quality grass-fed, grass finished, antibiotic and hormone free, pasture raised beef, chicken, and pork. It’s so easy because all you have to do is order your box, and it’s delivered to your doorstep. You can customize it, select whatever box you want. If you only want chicken, if you only want beef, if you want a mixture of all. And then you can set to your schedule to receive your Butcher Box when you want it. And they offer free shipping to the contiguous 48 states.

The classic box, it’s filled with 8-11 pounds of meat, but you can go bigger than that, really depending on your family size and what your needs are. So they really make it easy to get amazing quality meat to your doorstep. It couldn’t be easier. As soon as I’m about to run out of meat, I get a new box. Put it into my freezer, and then I can take out whatever I need as I’m craving it. It’s awesome.

And Butcher Box is so great to sponsor this podcast and help this podcast stay alive. I’ve been doing this podcast for about a year now, and it’s one of the hard things; it’s hard for me to keep up with because I just have other things going on and making sure I fit it in and get interviews in. And Butcher Box is really helping me keep this podcast up and going. So if you want to support the podcast as well as support an amazing company who is changing the world; who is actually changing the world. Then you can just go to You’ll get $10 off your first order plus two free grass-fed, grass finished filet mignons.

They really make a world of difference. Now I don’t have to read all the labels when I’m at the grocery store. This I can just open the box. I know it is the best quality sourced meat, and I don’t have to worry about anything. It is awesome. Mike is amazing. I work with an amazing girl, her name is Torrie, through Butcher Box. And this company has become such a big part of my own life. I love having them part of the podcast. So if you want to support the podcast, and support a great company, again just go to You can get $10 off your first order plus two free grass-fed, grass finished filet mignons right now. That is the special deal for PaleOMG Uncensored listeners. So go check them out. It is very important. Make sure you get that in your diet; clean meat. I highly, highly push that.

OK, next question. Chirpy Bird. I like that. “What do you do when you feel cranky? What helps you get out of that mood?”

Working out. That is my main stress reliever. When I’m feeling down in the dumps. When I’m feeling off. When I have to deal with someone telling me they hate my voice, or I look ugly in an outfit. Working out clears my head, gives me some endorphins, and I feel so much better. So yeah, that’s kind of what I do to get me out of moods. Working out is huge for my stress relief.

Jay Hegs. “Do you ever get tired of keeping up with workouts, cooking, eating clean, blogging, Instagram, taking photos, creating new content, all while having your hair and makeup on point. Some days when I’m good about my workout and food, I’m just kind of tired of all the effort it takes on top of my busy work schedule, so I’m wondering if you ever wake up and are like, “I don’t want to write a f*cking blog post today.” {laughs}

You know, I think; I never get tired. Like sick of it, because it is all so fun. And the cool thing about my job is if I am like; you know what, I’m not really feeling this recipe. Or I’m not really feeling this post. I can change it up. So, I think I get fatigued of making sure I stay up with everything. But I never get sick of it. Because if I’m sick of something, I know that post is not going to come across in the right way so I need to do something different.

So if I’m writing a beauty post and I’m just not into it that day, then I’m going to change it up and do a recipe, or do a travel post. So I have a lot of flexibility, and I think that’s what makes my content fun for me. Is I can do whatever and stay excited. But f*ck yeah, I do not do my hair and makeup every day. That’s for sure. I mostly just put on maybe foundation. Maybe. Some days I don’t put any makeup on at all. So it’s definitely; my makeup and hair aren’t on point. And I wash my hair like one day a week. So it is greasy all the time, I just try to brush it out. And if I needed to put a couple of curls through it just to give it some look to it, I’ll do that.

But if I’m ever feeling like I do not want to write this f*cking blog post today, I remember that somebody is coming to my blog for a new blog post. And that gets me excited to come up with a new one and keep me on track with my posts every day. So I hope that answers your question.

J. P. Crossfitter. “So random, but do you dye.” She or he has a couple of questions. “Do you dye the bottom of your hair a lighter color, or does it fade lighter because you’re naturally blonde?”

My hairstylist runs lighter color through it. I forget what that’s called. Balayage or something. I dye my hair every three weeks because I’m naturally blonde. So I have to dye my roots. And then she’ll pull some blonde, like bronze and copper colors through the bottom. And then they lighten up with sunlight. In the summer, they’ll lighten up by themselves.

“And also, I recently starting baking with cassava flour, and I’ve read that you can swap out any baking recipe calling for regular flour one to one. I tried it with an old recipe that called for regular flour, and it turned out fantastic. Do you use cassava flour very often, since you avoid almond flour? If so, do you bake or do you use it as a thickening agent?”

Jackson has to go outside. So, here’s the thing. I don’t bake that often. I find myself eating; whoa. I almost poured my water everywhere. I find myself eating way too much sugar if I bake. And so I just don’t bake that often. It’s only when I’m really craving it. I dabbled in cassava flour a little bit more; which reminds me, I want to make my edible cookie dough balls with cassava flour for Christmas day. I’m majorly in sugar addiction at this point {laughs} because all I do is watch the Food Network Baking shows, and now I’m craving sugar constantly. So I don’t bake that often.

But when I do, I like to use cassava flour now since I’m trying to stay away from almond flour, it just upsets my stomach. So I like cassava flour, especially that one to one ratio. It just makes things so much easier. So yeah. I have only used it as baking. I don’t think I’ve used it as a thickening agent yet. But yeah, I love it.

Ok, this one is Lori Gabbered. “Can you talk about how your body has changed over the years based on diet, exercise changes, and what you recommend most at this point in your journey to being healthy and looking amazing?”

Thank you that is so nice of you. I think I constantly do different stuff because I constantly see my body changing and adapting. So when I first started paleo like 6-7 years ago, I went super low carb and really high fat, and I lost a ton weight. And my body seemed to do really well with that. And then over time my body was not loving the high fat anymore, especially when I was really going hard with CrossFit workouts. So I had to go lower fat, higher carb, and my body did really well with that. And now I feel like my body does well with doing low carb for a few days and then higher carb for day; lower carb. So I think I’m constantly just playing around with it. It’s not like on my mind all day. I just think; like, I probably don’t need a potato tonight. I’ve had carbs already today. I just think of it that way, but it’s not something I over obsess about or think about that much.

But I think the main thing that’s been important to me is eating healthy generally. I mean, I still stay away from gluten. I try not to overdo my sugar. I try to balance my meals of good proteins, fat, and carbs. Then just working out regularly. I haven’t taken that many days off in 7 years. I always take off multiple days a week, but I’m not taking two weeks off, where I’m like; I’m just not feeling like working out. I haven’t done that. I don’t let myself do that. I don’t like to do that. So I think working out continuously and not letting myself get bored. If I feel myself getting bored, I change it up

So I was getting bored with CrossFit. I wasn’t liking the programming, so I got an Orange Theory membership. I just quit my Orange Theory membership, and I’m getting an Anytime Fitness so I can do some stuff on the side of my CrossFit workouts. Which I’ll talk about in a little bit. So I just don’t let myself get complacent and bored. I make sure I’m continuously sore on a regular basis and I’m challenging my body in new ways. Mixing it up with going easier some days and harder others. So that’s kind of, I think, what has been the best thing for me, is consistency. Is that word? Sh*t, I guess I need more coffee. But, yeah, staying consistent more than anything. With food and with exercise.

OK, Staci Ya. {laughs} “Just like you, I’ve pretty much made the decision to not have children. I mean, I never say never, but I’ve pretty much made my choice. My reasons are very similar to yours. One of the questions that I struggle with, however, and one that my parents love to bring up is, who will take care of you when you are old? Who will you leave all that you’ve built? How do you deal with these questions?”

Well, number one, here’s the reality of life. You could have a child, and that child could pass away. So even though you have a child and you’re like, Ok, this child will take care of me. F*cking sh*t happens, and that might not be the case. So what are you going to do, have another child when you’re 70 years old to figure out who is going to take care of you?

To me, if somebody asked me that question; who’s going to take care of you, first of all I’m saving money to make sure my parents are taken care of. But I’m saving money to make sure I am taken care of so I can be put in a home with my own money. So the money I’m making now I’m putting away for my retirement, and that retirement includes a home to take care of me in, that I felt comfortable in, when I can’t take care of myself anymore. I do not think it’s someone’s responsibility to take care of you because you birthed them.

And you can say, I’ll raise this child and they’ll take care of me. Your child might hate you. Your child might move away, not be close to you. So I think that is a ridiculous question, and an incredibly self-centered and selfish. Because it is your own responsibility to take care of yourself. But that just my opinion. I know people won’t like that one. Because I get that question a lot.

And, who will you leave all you’ve built? I have no idea. What if I haven’t built something? What if something goes completely under? Am I leaving my debt to someone? You know. I have no clue. And I’m sure when I’m old enough and I have friends that I would want to leave something to. That’s just not the worry. That’s not worth having a child, so you can leave something to them. I just I don’t see it as that. So yeah, that’s my opinion on that.

And this is the last kind of random question. Lizzie Byer. “What products are you being paid to endorse and what ones do you just love to use?”

So. I only endorse products that I love. I only endorse clothes that I love, products, food, fitness, whatever brands that I actually use myself. So, like Nordstrom. I wear Nordstrom clothes all the time. And sometimes they pay me to do a post about Nordstrom. But I still wear their clothes regardless, and promote them, even when they’re not paying me to post about them. So, what is so cool about my business. And the other day, the owner of my gym, he just loves to talk sh*t. He was saying; he was like, Juli, I can’t believe you’re promoting all these brands. Is everything sponsored? That’s not you. I’m like; ok. Look at the pants you have on. Say they’re Reebok. If Reebok came to you, and you’re wearing those pants already, and said, “We want to pay you to wear those pants and take a photo of them,” would you say no? You’re wearing those pants already. Do you say no because that’s “selling out”? It’s a funny thing to think about. And that changed his tune really quickly.

But you will see all kinds of things on my Instagram, whether it’s a brand I love. Like the other day, I talked about these plantain chips that I picked up. I was not paid to talk about those, I just love those plantain chips and I posted about them. And then you’ll see a post about Modcloth today. They paid me to post about them. I picked the outfit that I wanted to wear. And I have worn Modcloth since I started doing fashion on my blog years ago.

So you’re going to see all kinds of different things on my blog, but I only endorse things that I want to endorse. I have said no to many products and many brands out there that just don’t fit with what I love and what I want to talk about and what I use on a regular basis. So yeah. You’re only going to see stuff I really like, I promise you that.

2. Listener Questions: Food [45:33]

Ok, let’s go onto food. Food time, food time! Let’s start with Debra Wainwright. “Do you have bulletproof coffee?” I think you meant do you drink bulletproof coffee. “Why or why not?”

I don’t do bulletproof coffee. But in my coffee I add less than a tablespoon of heavy cream and then I put collagen in my coffee. I just don’t really like butter in my coffee. Once in a great while I’ll have some like at a coffee shop if they have bulletproof and I know I’m not going to eat for a while. Because it holds me over longer. But I’m just not a big bulletproof coffee fan. I like my coffee with heavy cream, stevia, and collagen in it. And that’s how I prefer my coffee every morning.

Lisa. “If you have to a restaurant for an event; like a friend’s birthday, work party, whenever; and it’s not paleo friendly, what is your go-to meal? What do you request from the chef to make for you?”

Well, that is a hugely broadly; broadly. {laughs} hugely; incredibly broad question. Jesus, Juli. Because there’s a lot of different restaurants out there. I don’t have an issue eating at restaurants, ever. No, they’re most of the time not cooking with the best oils, depending on where you’re at. Because they’ll use vegetable oil or canola oil, which is incredibly refined and messed up. So, and Mexican restaurant; say we’re at a Mexican restaurant, I will order fajitas; meat, vegetables, some rice on the side. You can just eat that by itself, you don’t have to eat it in a tortilla. If we go; say, we went to an Italian restaurant recently, which is like pizza and pasta, I ordered; there are entrees usually at Italian restaurants, so I got the salmon that had potatoes and broccolini. Boom.

I think it’s pretty easy. You just have to read outside of the lines. Last night I was at a burger place. I ordered a burger with no bun. Super easy. If you’re going strict paleo, it’s a little bit harder, making sure the oils are correct and you’re not having any dairy, like cheese on a burger or whatever else. But I find it pretty easy at restaurants. You just have to ask for changes sometimes. And people; restaurants will change things, even at a pasta place I’ve asked for, instead of pasta, just getting vegetables, and some places will do that. So, I think it’s pretty easy. You just have to open your eyes to different things if you haven’t been paleo or gluten free in the past.

Sara Bobbio. “What are your favorite pots to cook with?”

By far my cast iron skillet. I love my cast iron skillet. I use it for everything. I proudly have five cast iron skillets, at this point, because it just gets the best sear on meat. It cooks things evenly throughout. You don’t get these crazy ranges in temperatures. It heats up very evenly. I love it, it’s the best for sure. And I get a pre-seasoned; I usually just get Lodge. I think they’re really affordable and they’re pre-seasoned, and so nothing sticks.

“Do you ever go through periods during which you’re “bad” at being paleo? How do you snap out of it? Particularly when you’re sick and tired?”

I don’t think; well, I guess I’ll go through stages where I’m eating more sugar. And I’m kind of in that stage right now, where I’m just having chocolate at night every night. Or, I’ve had too many carbs. Or I’m eating too many chips on a regular basis. So I’ll go through that where I’m like; ok, time to snap out of it. But when I’m sick and tired, when I’m sick especially, that’s the time you need those really nutrient-dense foods, like vegetables. So I find it easier, because I don’t want to be sick anymore. So I’ll make sure to get those vegetables into my diet. But, yeah, I go through stages of just not eating my best, and then I get out of it. And say; ok, it’s time to get more vegetables from the store, and get on it. And that’s it.

Shell Patricia. “How do you stop your food from sticking to the bottom of your cast iron skillet or enameled cast iron skillet? Super frustrating. I want to fry an egg or cook tacos without everything sticking.”

You just need to make sure you get that cast iron skillet more; sometimes it takes a while to really get it seasoned. So I was always buy my cast iron skillets pre-seasoned, and then you’ve got to use more fat. And that’s kind of that thing you have to do at the beginning to get these cast iron skillets really good to go, is use more fat. And then over time you’re not going to need that as much. But add more fat. And that definitely helps with the sticking, for sure.

S-word. “If you aren’t a fan of vegetables, what is one you recommend starting to add to your diet? Best way to cook and season it?”

So, I hated vegetables when I first started paleo. And what I ate for probably a year straight was burnt broccoli. It was the only thing I could stomach, and then I was able to add more and more as my palate changed. But I would just toss the broccoli in a decent amount of fat, salt it, a little garlic powder, put it in the oven at like 400° until it’s burnt. And it is so good. That’s what started me on my vegetable train, for sure.

Julane. “These could be dumb or annoying questions. Do you always buy organic? Do grocery stores give you a discount because you’re a food blogger?”

So I pretty much most of time buy organic. Sometimes there are some foods that I just don’t worry, maybe if it has a skin on it that you’re going to remove, I don’t really worry about that, buying organic. But if you’re eating the skin I like to buy organic. And no, grocery stores do not give me a discount. The only online grocery store that I’ve worked with that’s given me a discount is Thrive Market, in the past. And then I’ve worked with Whole Foods before, who has given me a gift card to do a post. But grocery stores; I don’t just walk into any grocery store and they; nobody knows I’m a food blogger in any store that I’m at. And I’m not just telling everybody that. {laughs} Because nobody cares. So no.

Hunter X Gatherer. “I get very depressed and sad when I’ve gone off the paleo diet and eat other things. How do you deal with the guilt that comes with eating non-paleo foods? Or just unhealthy foods in general. Do you not feel guilty?”

So, I don’t eat foods that are going to make me feel guilty. I very rarely do that. Because I don’t want to feel guilty. And if I’m going to feel guilty about it, at this point in my life, it’s a food I shouldn’t be eating. I’m not at the point where I feel guilty about having anything, because I feel fine about any food choices that I make.

So say that, I’m trying to think of a situation. If I just had a couple of days where I’ve eaten more chocolate or more sweets than I need to, then I just remind myself of that. I don’t feel guilty, I just say, “Ok. Girl. Slow your roll. Just because it’s the holidays doesn’t mean you need to stuff your f*cking face with chocolate at night every night.” And then I say, “Ok. It’s time to cut yourself off. Go a little cold turkey for a couple of days.

But I don’t eat things that are going to make me feel awful. I don’t eat pasta. I don’t eat bread. I don’t eat any of the packaged, sh*tty food out there. I’d rather make my own stuff that might be on the more sugary side, but is not going to make me feel like sh*t. Because I don’t want to feel like sh*t, and I don’t want to feel guilty. So I just don’t eat those foods. So I rarely feel guilt related to food anymore. I just more so feel like; ok. It’s time to cut things off a little bit because you’re coming a bit sugar dependent. And that helps me get back on track. But I don’t feel guilty now, because I don’t eat those foods that made me feel so guilty in the past.

Amanda Laris. “I just moved to Denver a couple of months ago, and was so happy to meet you at the gluten free fair!” Hi Amanda! “Any good paleo gluten free donut shops you recommend in town?”

I love going to Beat Box Bakery in Denver. They have gluten free donuts that are delicious. And then Debbie’s Gluten free is a totally gluten free, celiac specific place. And they have delicious donuts on Saturdays. They might other days of the week, but I just know of Saturdays as well. And they have good gluten free stuff. Not so much paleo. There’s Just B Kitchen that’s paleo, but I haven’t seen her do any donuts there. But those are the two places that I go to if I’m craving a donut. Which makes me want a donut right now.

Torrie’s Whole Life. “What’s your favorite Instant Pot recipe?”

Probably; I have a new meatloaf recipe on there that I really loved. Probably my meatloaf, and carnitas. Oh, and Instant Pot taco stuffed potatoes. And buffalo chicken soup. And smoky bacon chili. Those are my favorite. {laughing} How annoying.

Kay- I’m not even going to try to read this name. “Do you eat strictly paleo, and how much? Do you do anything with macros?”

I do not eat strictly paleo. I eat strictly gluten free. I stay away from gluten altogether, and then most of my days are more paleo, just meats, vegetables, some starchier carbs. But I try not to do too many gluten free grains because it just can irritate the gut. And I just don’t need that many in my diet.

And I do not do anything with macros. I’ve never done macros, so I can’t even speak to macros. Yeah, I’ve never done anything.

I love this name, it’s Pikaah! That was probably loud in your ear. Pikaah! “I was also;” maybe you asked another question but I didn’t see it. “I was also wondering about protein bars. I have a hard time digesting RX bars. Do you like any protein bars?”

I honestly try to stay away from protein bars on a regular basis. The only time that I’m eating more often is when I’m traveling. So I have them with me. Larabars aren’t protein specific bars, but I like having those on hand in a pinch. Larabar has all kinds of different bars at this point. And I love Perfect Bars. They’re not strict paleo, at all, but I really like those ones. But I just try not to eat protein bars on a regular basis. More so when I’m traveling or I just can’t get to a meal very quickly.

Tonja Gets You Fit. “Do you fast or do any intermittent fasting?”

I do not fast or do any intermittent fasting other than when I sleep for 8 hours. That’s when I like to fast. {laughs} And then between meals. That’s fasting, right? I know there are benefits to fasting, but I don’t do it myself. I’ve had too many issues with eating in general that intermittent fasting is just a way to starve myself and I’m not down for that anymore in my life. So, nope, I don’t do it. But Mind Pump guys, I know they talk about doing it. They might be great ones to chat with or just listen to.

Katie. Literally with 10 I’s. I love that. “I just started eating gluten free because I have gut issues. One of my favorite things to eat out is sushi, and I’m struggling finding options without soy sauce. Any suggestions?”

Well first of all find a sushi place that’s good enough that you don’t even need the soy sauce. That is; we go to Izakay Den in Denver all the time, and I don’t ever eat anything with soy sauce because all their sushi and their nigiri and sashimi and all their different dishes; their fish is so fresh and delicious that you don’t need it.

But you can always us Tamari, which is a gluten free soy sauce. Or you can use coconut aminos. Tamari is more salty like soy sauce, and coconut aminos is more sweet. So try those. Just bring your own bottle, and pour it out into the little cup that they give you. And you’re done.

“Struggling hard with overeating. How can you help yourself not overeat all the time?” This is Janessa Fleming.

So, for me, when I was overeating; and I look at this now. The reason I was overeating was because something was missing in my life. I was depressed. I hadn’t found happiness in my own life, so I was trying to find happiness through food. So there might be an emotional piece that you need to look at. I have no idea, I’m just speaking from my own experience of why I overate.

Or, are you maybe missing food at other times of the day? Are you overeating all the time? Or say you’re overeating at night; are you not eating enough during the day and that’s why you’re overeating at night. So it could be undereating at other times of the day. It could be an emotional point, and that’s what it was for me. I’m trying to fill sadness with food. Are you making sure you’re getting enough water? Because a lot of times we eat, we think we’re hungry, and we’re actually just thirsty. Speaking of, let’s get a sip. Oh my god, that’s so refreshing.

I find that all the time, because I’m thirsty constantly from my acne medication that I’m on, spironolactone. So I have to make sure that I’m drinking enough water, or else I think I’m hungry. So that’s kind of ways I combat that.

Danielle Cap. “More info on intuitive eating? I’ve been trying to listen to my body when it comes to hunger cues. All day I’m good, and right around dinner I can’t control how big my portion gets. I just keep getting more. How do you stick to it? Even when your hormones or brain are saying take all the bites.”

So you can control; you’re saying you can’t control how big your portion gets. You can. You actually have full control. I think slowing down, chewing your food. I hear this from Mind Pump all the time; how much your body starts digesting as soon as you start seeing the food, because your hunger cues start up. Your body starts the acid in your stomach to digest food. Then it hits your tongue. Make sure you’re chewing. Make sure you drink plenty of water throughout the day.

And for me, I like to use a smaller plate, just because aesthetically it looks better in photos, so when you have a full plate versus a big plate and just a little bit of food on there. Think about when you eat your other meals. Say at lunch time, you know how much protein you kind of eat. You know how many vegetables. And that’s how you know how much food you need. The same goes with dinner.

For me, if I want to eat more of something, having more vegetables around, it’s not bad to eat more vegetables. Eat more vegetables. That’s totally cool. But you know that you’re overeating, and hormones may tell you something and the brain may tell you something, but you know what you should be eating. If you have found what works for you. So slow down. Chew your food. Take your time. Put your fork down. Take a second. Talk to your significant other or your friend that’s with you. Hang out for a little bit. Don’t just chow down and go back before your body has even had time to process that it’s full. I think that’s so important. To find where you feel comfortable, instead of overly full. And then that’s when you’ve over done it.

Last but not least in the food section, this is from Sarah Bardot. “You mentioned that your cast iron skillet is your favorite kitchen gadget.” I just said that, how’d you know?! You’ve listened to the podcast before. “How do you clean yours? I heard people say they never use soap on it, but it seems to gross me out.”

I don’t ever use soap. I think it’s disgusting. You don’t want to use soap on cast iron skillets. The soap goes into the pores of the cast iron skillet, from what I understand. And so then when you cook later on, the soap is going to cook into that food. The soap that’s been left behind. So don’t use the soap.

As soon as I’m finished cooking, I put water in my cast iron skillet, I boil it, I scrub it with a metal scrubber. Dump the water out, dry it off, and then I reoil it with olive oil or whatever I have around. Coconut oil. To reseason it. So that’s what I do. No soap. No, no. If you want to use soap, don’t use a cast iron skillet!

3. Listener Questions: Makeup and skincare [1:03:54]

Ok, let’s talk about some makeup and skin care.

Maria Greenwald. “When did you start selling Beautycounter, and how does it fit in with your other beauty products? There seems to be so many amazing options out there but I can’t use and buy everything. I’m loving Beautycounter, and I’m intrigued by Tula products you use. I also use Primally Pure. Do you feel like pick one line or mix and match the best? That’s several questions, but thank you for answering.”

I love trying all kinds of different beauty products. I totally get that it’s hard to just invest in a ton of different products. If you find a line that works for you, then stick with that line. If it’s not working anymore, try a different line. I use multiple different lines because I like to see how it changes my skin. I like listening to other bloggers and what they’ve been using and trying and adding into my routine.

I started using Beautycounter; I’ve used Beautycounter products for probably two years now. I just love a bunch of other products that I use; like Vivant skin care, Tula, L’Occitane; a ton of different products. So I think it’s great to stick with one, because you can really get the full benefits out of that product line. But using multiple isn’t a bad thing, either. Do what works for your skin, and try other things if something’s not working. I don’t know if that answers your question, but that’s what I do, personally.

Erin Gravy. “What is your stance on skin care lines like Beautycounter, Ever Skin, Tula, and all these new lines promoting safer beauty? As someone who has battled adult acne for a hot minute, I want to find something that’s good for my skin and health as well as packs a punch in my skin type needs.”

I think skin care is not a one-size fits all, just like food is not a one-size fits all. So keto isn’t one-size fits all. And Weight Watcher is not one-size fits all. You have to find what works for you. And I’m all about safer beauty products, but I’m all about the chemicals and stuff that {laughs} seems to do the trick. I went on Accutane and had a great experience, and some other people say they wish they had never gone on Accutane, or had their daughter go on Accutane.

So there’s not one-size fits all. It is what works for you. So I just love trying all kinds. I mean, I just lasered off my entire face, and some people think that’s f*cking crazy. You’ve got to do what works for you, baby boo.

Ok. Chris 10 UNC. “I use Primally Pure deodorant religiously. I love the product and it really helps keep the smell at bay. My question is; what do you do to prevent sweat stains in your clothes? You’ve said you sweat like a boy, and I’m in South Florida, and I’m guessing our sweating capabilities have got to be fairly similar.”

I don’t wear a lot of white. {laughs} That’s the way I prevent sweat stains. But that’s just life. I just don’t wear a lot of white clothes, that have sleeves on them. Because sweat stains will go through. But I don’t really do anything to prevent it. Sweating is just kind of a natural occurrence. So it’s just what you’ve got to deal with.

Ok, so this is kind of a two-piece question from Life with a Beach View. “We see you using a variety of flours; is there a reason you use one versus the other?” And then second part says, “Just a comment; love the episode with Miranda Oldroyd, and with the CrossFit owner of your gym. Would love to see you do commentary for regionals.”

We’ll just start with the CrossFit one; I would never do commentary for regionals because I just don’t give a f*ck. I like talking to some crossfitters, but I don’t give a f*ck about regionals. I did regionals myself. I don’t care about talking about them, or watching them or doing anything with them at this point. So you will not see me talking about that. But you will see me talking about the Bachelor, that’s for sure!

And flours; I like to use all kinds of different flours, just because not only does it make it possible for more people to cook certain things. Maybe they can’t get cassava flour, so they can get almond flour or coconut flour or vice versa. And I think they just bake a little bit differently. So I just like kind of changing it up more than anything.

Ok, back to skincare. This is Sam Pinkins. “I tried some Tula products that you posted; the serum and the day and night lotion, and like them. But I’m specifically looking for a good anti-wrinkle eye cream. I know Tula has one; any report on results?”

Eyes are a hard thing. I can’t speak to a cream just instantly helping with wrinkles. Because I go to the esthetician on a regular basis, and work on wrinkles by getting a laser that makes your face bleed. So I can’t speak on certain eye creams.

I love Tula, and I love L’Occitane. Those are the two I use the most for my eye creams. But I can’t speak to them just fixing wrinkles, because I see the esthetician and we do anti-wrinkle stuff regularly. So I can’t really speak to that. But those are the two I use on a daily basis.

This Cizbrowski. “How often do you get Botox? Any update on the FasciaBlaster?”

I get Botox every three to four months. Some people don’t have to get it that often. When you work out on a regular basis, you just metabolize it quicker. So I have to just get it more often than I would prefer to; but I like to workout so that’s just how it’s going to have to be. I know some people who get it every 6 months. And I think I get like 20 to 25 units. Botox is the f*cking best, I love it.

And any update on the FasciaBlaster; no. I haven’t used the FasciaBlaster since before summer. I stopped in summer because I didn’t want to have bruises. And then I just didn’t care. I really wish I cared more about using the FasciaBlaster. The FasciaBlaster is supposed to help with cellulite. I’ve heard about lawsuits with her; I have not idea of any of that. But I have not used it, and I just don’t care to. I’d rather just have cellulite and just keep working out and eating healthy and drinking water. It’s too much of my time! That FasciaBlaster took too much of my time.

4. Listener Questions: Fitness [1:10:55]

So let’s go into fitness! Last topic is fitness. Lots of cool fitness questions, this is fun.

Ok. Haven Amy. “Personal question; did you find your butt flattened out a bit when you increased your running in Orange Theory? I used to run a lot. And completely lost my butt and glutes. I’ve since heard it called runners butt, like it’s a thing. Slowly building it back after nearly a year of CrossFit.”

I don’t know if my butt has flattened out? The thing is, I used to have a much bigger butt when I was 30 pounds heavier, so my butt has gotten smaller as I’m not 30 pounds heavier and competing in CrossFit anymore. So my butt has definitely decreased in size, because I’m not squatting over 200 pounds on a daily basis. So my butt has changed. I don’t think it really changed with Orange Theory. But I was only running like 3 miles in c lass every day. So I don’t think that’s going to be enough to lose my butt. So no.

Nicole Lilies. “Nutritionally, what does my body need pre-workout? My gym pushes these caffeinated preworkout energy supplements and drink, but I don’t really buy into any of those because I’m just exercising to stay healthy, not going out for any body building competitions over here. What kind of food fuel should I prepare my body with? I usually do 45 minutes of HIIT style workout and about 4.5 hours…” What? “After lunch.” Oh, ok. Sorry, god I was thinking you meant 4.5 hours of working. “4.5 hours after lunch, and tend to feel hungry a bit and need fuel.”

Ok. Girlfriend, I don’t know what your body needs because every single body is completely different, and I’ve never met you. I know nothing about your body, nothing about your routine. So even if you tell me your style workout, I have no idea what kind of food you’re going to need. I don’t believe in those caffeinated pre-energy workout supplement drinks. Because if you need energy, f*cking eat food. Food is energy. I hate those pre-energy workout drinks. If you need energy, you need to supplement with real food. Because food is fuel.

So, I mean, usually pre-workout. If my stomach needs to be settled, I have half of a Larabar or just a little bit of a snack of a meal I had earlier. So I have chicken salad in the fridge. Maybe I’d have a couple of bites of chicken salad to settle my stomach. But I don’t personally do anything pre-workout or even post-workout. Because I usually have meals in between them. So you’ve got to just find what works for you, girlfriend. But I can’t tell you that, because I have never met you. I don’t know you; I don’t know what’s going to work for you. But yeah, I’m not a huge believer in those energy drinks. Sorry to those people who love them.

This one, Burlap Dancer. Oh, that’s a fun name. “What advice do you have for someone who has tried different types of workouts, and hates them all? Asking for a friend.”

I would say keep searching. Keep trying to find new things. There are so many different kinds of workouts out there now. There’s yoga sculpt. There’s Pilates. There’s pole dancing. There’s Zumba. There’s hip-hop dancing classes. Instead of looking at maybe a CrossFit style workout or Orange Theory, maybe think about it as more fun type workouts, like dancing stuff. If you would like that. Your name is Burlap Dancer; you’ve got to love dancing, right? So keep looking. Because there’s something out there for everyone. And that’s why there are so many gyms available at this point.

Ok, Lisa Shelly. “Why did you cancel your Orange Theory membership?” So I talked about that earlier. Just yesterday, I canceled my Orange Theory membership. And the main reason was, first of all, I wasn’t using it. I went probably three weeks without going to Orange Theory. And it was because I had like 5 classes in a row with all sh*tty coaches. I was so bored! I’m like, this isn’t inspiring. This isn’t inspiring. I’m so bored in class. I can’t wait to get out of class. And I should not feel that in the hour of me-time. I should not feel like, I can’t wait to get out of here.

So I didn’t want to go; I didn’t feel any excitement to go. So I like going to CrossFit. I’ve been going to CrossFit for 7 years. I love going to those classes. I always have fun. I’m always excited to go. But I wanted to do something else, because CrossFit is not giving me the butt I would prefer, and it’s been 7 years. If it hasn’t worked in 7 years, I think it’s time to do something different. And I just want a little bit bigger butt. A little rounder. A little bit more muscular. So it’s time to do some stuff outside of CrossFit. So I’m going to get a membership at the small gym by me, and I can do some butt workouts.

And I was talking about adding some butt workouts to my routine, and somebody was like; hey, you should check out Bret Contreras 1 on Instagram, he has amazing butt workouts. So I go to his page, and he has awesome stuff. I’ve been stealing some stuff off his Instagram that he shares. And I’m just going to add that to my routine. So I’m going to that gym near me today to get a membership and add stuff to my routine. And probably do CrossFit 5 days a week; I was doing 3 days and then 2 days of Orange Theory. So now I’ll probably be back to CrossFit 5 days a week and then adding in butt workouts 3 days a week. It’s stuff that I can do on top of my CrossFit stuff.

So yeah, I’m just going to change it up. I just got bored and wasn’t into some of the coaches I had. No offense to them, it was getting me excited and happy to be there. So I didn’t want to do it anymore.

Jene Carpen. “Favorite exercise? When you see it, you get excited.”

I love snatches, I love overhead squats, and I’m always happy to do double unders. Double unders are pretty comfortable and easy for me. I can do a good amount in a row. So I’m always happy to do those.

Lena Michelle, I think. “Do you use specific shoes for lifting? I started CrossFit a few months ago, and everyone keeps telling me I should get different shoes.”

So I do believe if you’re doing CrossFit regularly, get some flat shoes. I really love Nike Metcons. They’re flat. I don’t love them in running workouts, if we have like 400 meter runs multiple times, I just feel like they’re a little clunky. But they’re flat, they’re great for box jumps and lifts and any of the normal CrossFit movements.

Make sure you get flat shoes, unlike running shoes that are a kind of lifted and a little squishy. That’s just harder to do lifts in. I personally don’t think you need lifting specific shoes, unless you are going to compete. I think they become this; people just want to get all the gear. So they want to get lifting shoes. And believe me, I’ve been this person. They want to get lifting shoes, the knee guards, the wrist straps, the I don’t know, f*cking CrossFit shorts. They want to get it all. But that’s not going to improve your performance in the gym. Just getting better with your movements is going to improve your performance.

Lifting shoes aren’t going to make you a stronger lifter unless you have a strong lift in the first place. They can help you PR long-term, because they get you into a better position. But I think first and foremost, especially if you’re new at CrossFit, just dial in your movements. You don’t need to drink the CrossFit Kool-Aid of just getting all the f*cking gear. Just get your movements great, first. I think movements are much more attractive than CrossFit gear. I don’t use lifting shoes, myself. For any of my lifts.

Susan Jessup. “I’m a busy mom, wife, and teacher. I usually try to completely my workouts at 5:30 in the morning, but some days are endless and I don’t get to bed until late. Is it better to log a few hours of shut eye or to get my exercise in on these mornings. Should I sacrifice sleep or exercise?”

So, number one, sleep is incredibly important. If your goal is to lose weight or maintain your fitness, and you’re not getting enough sleep, and you’re f*cking up your cortisol, that is not going to help you with your goals or maintenance. So sleep is very important.

But, if it becomes, you can’t get to bed every night until late and this becomes a regular thing so you’re not exercising at all, I don’t think that’s great, either. So I think you have to find a balance of some nights, you don’t get to bed until late, sleep is more important. That’s fine; get your sleep in. And then other days you’re like; ok, it’s been a couple of days. I need to make sure I get my workout in tomorrow. Do that. I think you’ve got to find a balance, because not working out ever is not great. Not sleeping is not great. So it’s a balancing act when we’re all busy people and you can figure it out.

I really love Clare has gone through this, of Girls Gone WOD. Because she has a super busy job. Her husband was in school. And then she has a toddler. So she would set her alarm and if she didn’t get a certain amount of sleep, then she wouldn’t go to the gym. If she did get that sleep, then she would go to the gym. So I think it’s a balance act in finding what works for you. But sleep is very important and should be taken more seriously by more people, for sure.

Carissa. “I love working out. I’m literally in the worst mood if I don’t sweat once a day, but my boyfriend does not. It’s really hard to motivate him to workout, and I always bug him about it. Which I think irritates him. He just doesn’t have a lot of experience, and therefore confidence, in the gym. Any advice on how to go about motivating him or a way he could ease into a workout, so he comes to enjoy it and then sticks with it?”

That’s a hard one. Especially with your significant other. Luckily I have a husband who works out on a regular basis, but if he has had a crazy week at work and working out has been not as easy for him, I try to find ways to make it easy for him. So I’m like; hey, if you need to go to the gym tonight, we’ll have a later dinner. I want you to make sure you get your workout in and stay healthy.

So luckily I haven’t had to deal with that. But I think if this continues to be a thing, and your boyfriend doesn’t want to workout, I think it’s important to tell him why that’s important to you. Because to me, if my husband stopped working out, I would sit him down and I would say, “Your health is very important to me. Because if you’re not around, that’s a huge bummer. And fitness is a huge part of our lives, and taking care of yourself is a huge part of our lives. So how can we get your feeling comfortable in the gym? How can we get you working out on a regular basis?” And having that serious conversation. Because fitness is very important. Not to all people, but it should be. Physical exercise and taking care of yourself for long-term health should be part of their number one need in their own life as well as your life together.

So maybe sitting him down and talking about that. Or taking him to your gym and showing him some of the things that you’ve been doing. But he is going to have to find what works for him at the end of the day. But maybe having a serious sit-down conversation where he doesn’t feel like you’re attacking him in some way is maybe something you could try.

Torrie Ding Dong! {laughs} That’s fun. “How did you balance your hormones after experiencing adrenal fatigue? How do you monitor your hormone balance now? Specifically assessing how much is too much exercise. I love how I feel after working out, so I always feel up for it, but I know I need rest. So while I try to listen to my body, I always want to decrease stress with a workout so it’s not easy.”

So balancing my hormones, dealing with adrenal fatigue in the past. Working out way less, because I was working out multiple times a day. So I was working out way less, taking more rest days. Eating more. Those were all things that helped me balance my hormones. Sleeping more. Those were all huge.

I don’t really monitor my hormones at this point, but I know when my body is out of whack. So if I’m gaining weight, losing weight. If things are seeming weird, I try to figure out why that is. What’s happening and how I can change that.

For me, what works for me is taking two rest days a week. And before I always wanted to workout every day, because I felt that addiction that my body needed that stress relief or needed that endorphin high. And it doesn’t. It needs rest, as well. So what seems to work for me, because I’ve dialed this in. And that may change in the future. Is working out Monday through Wednesday, resting on Thursday. Working out Friday, Saturday, resting on Sunday. And that changes depending on when I’m traveling or things that have come up, and change my schedule a little bit.

But resting two days a week is huge for me, and I can feel my body recover. I can see my muscles change, and I can see the physical changes that come with taking that rest. So that’s what has worked for me. And I just listen to my body and see what it needs. If it needs an extra rest day; maybe it does.

Ang Medley. “My CrossFit coach owner.” Ugh, this one pisses me the f*ck off. “My CrossFit coach owner has not shown up at a 6 a.m. class 4 times this month. It’s open gym if the TRX coach is there, or if it’s closed I can’t workout. How do I approach him and tell him how unprofessional he is running his business? I feel like he’s losing his passion for the sport and it’s showing when he’s coaching, as well. I feel like he needs a pep talk.”

I mean, you’re a paying customer. What the f*ck? You can’t just not show up to your job when you have paying customers. That’s so f*cked up. That’s so f*cked. So yeah, you should confront him. Be like; you haven’t shown up. I’m paying money for your classes. That makes no sense to me at all. And say, if you’re not going to show up, hire someone else to do your classes, you f*ck. That’s so unprofessional. Absolutely confront him about that; that’s so unprofessional. Not cool.

Tri Rose. “Have you tried other workouts like spin, cyclebar, soul cycle, pure barre, core power, or other fitness studios like those?”

Yeah I’ve tried tons of things. I’ve tried cyclebar, soul cycle. My girlfriend owns a barre studio; barre Forte Lo/Hi that I love. I just don’t get over there very often because the construction is kind of sh*tty on the other side of town. But they’re amazing. There’s fierce 45. There’s fit wall. I’ve tried a ton of different things. I just always love CrossFit the most. It’s my favorite.

And last but not least, Marissa Janey. “What advice would you give for someone that is considering CrossFit? It always seems so intimidating. Also, what was the most helpful thing you did starting eating clean and avoiding sugar? Love your blog posts and podcasts. You’re the best.”

No, you are Marissa! Ok, so if you’re feeling intimidated about CrossFit; good. I think everyone should do something that scares them and makes them nervous, because that’s when some of the most beautiful things come. And for me, I was very scared of CrossFit when I started, and I started doing workouts by myself in the gym in a room by myself because I was embarrassed. I couldn’t do any pullups or pushups and I was nervous. But I wish I would have had a coach from the beginning.

And if you walk into a CrossFit gym, believe me, you will see all kinds of different people. You will see the shirtless dudes that we picture with CrossFit, with like 47 abs. You will see a guy who is just starting his fitness journey and might be overweight. You’ll see a mom. You’ll see a teenager. I have a 14-year-old in my classes. Or I did, when I was still coaching. So you’re going to see all kinds of different people. So don’t feel intimidated. Because everybody feels intimidated, even when they’ve done CrossFit for years. I still get intimidated by workouts, so you’re not alone. And that’s the best part about CrossFit, is you have someone to mull over the workout with afterwards and talk about your misery together. So, don’t be intimidated. Just get in there.

And then I think the most helpful thing I did with eating paleo was stop obsessing. Before I was like; I have to be strict paleo. Be super obsessive. And it made me crazier. And it made sticking with eating healthy much harder. So, I think just saying food is good for me and that’s why I’m going to eat certain foods. Instead of, I’m going to eat strict paleo then I can have a cheat meal and eat pizza and cookies and feel like sh*t and hate my life and then get back on paleo. I wish I would have just seen it as a new healthy lifestyle, instead of being crazy dieter instead. So that’s what I would recommend.

I have a 40-pound furnace of a dog on top of me. So, guys, don’t forget about this week’s sponsor, Butcher Box. Again, if you want to try them out for $10 off your first order and two free grass-fed, grass-finished filet mignons. You can support the podcast along with it. Just go to to get that offer. And I will see you guys next week! I have a special guest on the podcast next week so stay tuned for that. I’m going to share who that person is on Instagram, so you can ask her specific questions next week.

So thank you guys so much for listening and sending in your listener questions. It is so fun to do these episodes. And please, if I didn’t answer your question, please write me on my blog on And I have some holiday recipes, since the holidays are not over. Go to and you can get those. So I will talk to you guys next week. See you soon; bye-bye.

Answering your fun questions on the podcast today!! Thank you to everyone who wrote in on instagram and left a fun question to answer! If I missed yours, feel free to come over to and I’ll be sure to […] Answering your fun questions on the podcast today!! Thank you to everyone who wrote in on instagram and left a fun question to answer! If I missed yours, feel free to come over to and I’ll be sure to […] PaleOMG Uncensored yes 1:30:58
Interview w/ Lisa Bilyeu of Quest Nutrition – Episode 63: PaleOMG Uncensored Podcast Sat, 16 Dec 2017 13:44:29 +0000 6 Today on the podcast, I have the inspiring and amazing woman Lisa Bilyeu. Lisa is the co-found of Quest Nutrition, President of Impact Theory, and the co-host of the Sheroic Podcast! It’s safe to say that Lisa stays busy. And […] Today on the podcast, I have the inspiring and amazing woman Lisa Bilyeu. Lisa is the co-found of Quest Nutrition, President of Impact Theory, and the co-host of the Sheroic Podcast! It’s safe to say that Lisa stays busy. And she has an incredible health story that I think so many people can relate to in some degree. Excited to share her story with you guys!


Big Thank You This Weeks Sponsor – ButcherBox

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Support the podcast by clicking the Subscribe button on iTunes and please a review only if you love the podcast! There is enough negativity in this world, don’t spread more. I love hearing about what YOU want me to talk about so feel free to leave on comment here or on social media with topics you’d like me to cover! And don’t forget, some posts have affiliate links which I may be compensated from. This compensation helps with keeping this blog and up and running! Thank you so much for your support, you guys are amazing!


Episode 63 Transcription!

This is Juli Bauer from PaleOMG and you are listening to PaleOMG Uncensored.

Juli Bauer: Hey guys! Welcome to another episode of PaleOMG Uncensored. I am Juli Bauer Roth, and thank you guys so much for listening. Today I have a very special guest. I’m so excited to have her on. I’ve been doing all this research finding out all the different things that Lisa Bilyeu is doing. So, thank you Lisa, for being on my podcast!

Lisa Bilyeu: Oh, Juli, thank you so much for having me on. I’m super excited!

Juli Bauer: It’s so cool. I first heard about you on Girls Gone WOD with Joy and Clare, and started looking you up then. And then got in contact with you. So it’s so cool to have you on, because I loved listening to you with Joy and Clare. You just have this beautiful voice that’s just dreamy to listen to.

Lisa Bilyeu: {laughs}

Juli Bauer: So where are you from, originally?

Lisa Bilyeu: I’m from England. I was going to say, I think the accent fools people on the voice! {laughs}

Juli Bauer: Yes, it’s just so pretty. {laughs}

Lisa Bilyeu: Thank you! I’m from England. I’ve been living in the States for 15 years full time, and almost 17 years. But my husband loves the accent so much, that I’ve done everything I can to keep it! {laughs}

Juli Bauer: Seriously. What brought you to the states?

Lisa Bilyeu: I actually came over for a film making course. And it was a summer just program. I was only supposed to be here for two months. Day one, I walk into the film school, and there stands this very sexy, hot American guy. He asks me on a date about a month later. And both of us thought; this is going to be so much fun. For me, it’s a story to go back to England and tell all my friends that I had this summer fling with this really hot American guy.

Juli Bauer: {laughs}

Lisa Bilyeu: He just came out of a relationship where the girl went a little crazy, so he’s like; this is fantastic. She has to leave the country; she’s obligated to. I don’t have to worry about her going crazy. And I think it was kind of that mentality of both of us thinking we don’t have to put on any pretenses that when we went on our first date, it was literally like lightening and we spent every single moment after that together. And that was 17 years ago. So my summer fling turned into a bit more than that. But I joke that I got a lifetime of filmmaking education. {laughs}

Juli Bauer: Wow. So what was your husband doing in that course?

Lisa Bilyeu: He was actually my teacher!

Juli Bauer: Oh-ho-ho!!

Lisa Bilyeu: Yeah.

Juli Bauer: That’s very juicy! I love that. {laughs}

Lisa Bilyeu: I know, right? {laughs} So he was teaching. And when I first met him, there were certain elements about him that I just completely fell in love with. He always had ambition; grand ambitions. And I’m very much like that. For me, when I was maybe 16, I said I’m going to be the first filmmaker to win an Academy Award, female filmmaker, sorry. Sadly, I’ve lost that battle, because Kathryn won it.

Juli Bauer: {laughs}

Lisa Bilyeu: But you know, we both had these crazy ideas of what life should be like. So when we kind of fell for each other, it was never a discussion of; “Oh, can we make this work because it’s long distance. I’m not sure.” We just both dived in with both feet, and we’re like; let’s do this. Let’s build a life together and a future together.

Juli Bauer: So was it hard for you to live full time in the States? Do you miss being back home? Or was it just happy as can be since you are here with your husband now?

Lisa Bilyeu: It was, to be honest, pretty miserable for the first year.

Juli Bauer: Where do you live now?

Lisa Bilyeu: We live in Los Angeles.

Juli Bauer: Ok.

Lisa Bilyeu: We got married in England because I’m Greek and have a massive Greek family, so it was very important for all my family to fly in and we do the whole big ceremony. But we had agreed we’d move to Los Angeles because both of us wanted to be in film. We wanted to be filmmakers. And we both love the sunshine, so it wasn’t really a question of where do we go. We kind of knew we were going to be in LA.

And so, yeah. Sorry what was the question? I’ve lost my train of thought.

Juli Bauer: {laughs} Well, have you been happy. You said it was kind of miserable in the beginning.

Lisa Bilyeu: Oh sorry, thank you. So when we moved to LA; I loved the city, and it had everything I’d ever dreamed about. But then reality sets in. And it’s; wow, I don’t have any friends here. All my friends are through my husband. I don’t have a job; I can’t drive because I don’t have a social security number.

Juli Bauer: Oh my god, yeah.

Lisa Bilyeu: So for a whole year, I was sitting in a 700-square foot apartment trying to find things to do to kill my time. So that was really, really rough. And then over time, you kind of build your network, and you build people around you who you really get along with. And my husband and I went into business together, and that went from me being a housewife to being an entrepreneur, and that changed my life dramatically.

Juli Bauer: So I want to hear all about your many businesses you have. But let’s kind of go back to the beginning. Because you have a crazy health story. And I think a lot of people who listen to my podcast, or who have followed my blog. They are looking for a better life, and a better health in general, and a lot of people are dealing with leaky gut and a lot of different issues. And you have a pretty crazy story that I heard on Girls Gone WOD. So can you kind of tell everyone about your health story, and how you were able to heal your body?

Lisa Bilyeu: Yeah, absolutely. So, I have always, I guess from the age of 16, been rather body conscious. I was very skinny as a child. So in going through my teenage years, obviously your body develops and you change. And I had a not so very nice boyfriend who would point out and pinch my fat, and then start telling me that I was getting fat.

Now, as you can imagine as a teenager, that is really impactful on you, and your self-esteem, and how you see yourself. So I went pretty much immediately into listening to the outside noise. “Oh, you shouldn’t eat cheese because it’s really high calorie.” Cool, I’ll pull that from my diet. You hear somewhere else, “You shouldn’t eat carbs because of this.” Ok, cool, I’ll pull that from my diet.

And before I knew it, I was pulling things from my diet from all this noise around me. And it got to the point where then I was just getting sick. I’m sure it was because I wasn’t intaking enough calories, or sustaining a healthy gut. So I was getting sick a lot. And in getting sick, I was prescribed antibiotics. And this went on for probably 10, 15 years. Where I was restricting my diet, taking antibiotics, the antibiotics were killing my gut bacteria. I wasn’t giving myself the food and the nutrition to replace it.

So cut to 15 years later of doing the same pattern, one day I got the stomach flu. And I would always have stomach issues and digestion, but I never really felt like I couldn’t recoup. And then one day when I got this flu. It took me so far over the edge, that when I started recovering, I couldn’t eat. So every time I would eat, I couldn’t sustain it in my body. I would get major cramps. I would get major bloating. To the point where my stomach would protrude so far out, that standing up for more than 5 minutes was agonizing. At one point, I had to sit down in the shower because I couldn’t even stand long enough to have a shower. That’s how bad it got.

Juli Bauer: And this was no matter what you were eating?

Lisa Bilyeu: Correct. It didn’t matter what I tried, what I was eating. I just couldn’t stomach anything. So I was slowly losing a lot of weight. I didn’t have any energy in the gym. And I started going to the doctors. And I went very traditionally to the doctors; the allergy doctors, the gastric doctors. So trying to find all the people to give me the answer.

Now the problem is, every time I was going to a doctor, they were telling me, “This is your problem.” So I was going to an allergy doctor, and they’re telling me, “You’re allergic to beef.” They literally were like, “You’re allergic to beef and eggs.” And I was like, that’s pretty much all I eat! So I cut out beef and eggs.

Then I went to a different doctor, and they told me I had SIBO. I went to a different doctor, they told me I was lactose intolerant. So again, I was just taking in all this noise, just thinking; ok, they know what they’re talking about. It only then got worse.

One thing; I’m a cofounder of Quest Nutrition. And at Quest Nutrition, we have a big R&D department. And the R&D department, we always are looking into the new research, the new science. Because we never want to be dogmatic about our food. So if, for instance, tomorrow you told us protein is actually killing people, we would stop making protein bars. With that company. We pride ourselves on what we stand for. So we’re always doing research. Always doing science and studies.

So my husband went to the R&D department, and went to his business partners, and was like; you have to help save my wife. She’s slowly pretty much dying. I hate to be dramatic about it, but my hair was falling out. My nails were getting really thin. And so I was just so malnourished that he said; “We’re a week away from having her do an autoimmune transfusion.” Because that’s what they ended up saying, finally. You’ve got an autoimmune deficiency, we have to give you a transfusion to replace your cells. And that was going to be a 6-month ordeal.

And my husband was like; no. This can’t be the answer. Understanding what we know about food, I’m telling you it must be diet-based, and it must be based on the food. And what you’re dealing with is kind of like putting a Band-Aid over a gaping wound. It’s like, you’re not actually dealing with the problem. The problem is it needs stitches, it needs to heal. And we’re not doing that. We’re just jumping to, let’s throw a Band-Aid over it and hope it stops the bleeding.

So we went to the R&D department. We basically did a study on my gut biome, broke everything down. And immediately, they said, “You need to go on a ketogenic diet, because you have so many inflammatory cells in your gut that it’s just in complete disarray.” So I went onto a ketogenic diet.

Juli Bauer: Ok. So when you started this ketogenic diet, how long did it take you to really heal your gut? And what did that ketogenic diet entail? Were you cutting out certain foods and just trying to eat super high fat? Or what did it really look like for your own gut health?

Lisa Bilyeu: Yeah, so based on the research that we had done internally about a ketogenic diet, all the benefits that it has on the mind. And now there are so many studies coming out about the mind-body connection, and how many neurons you have in your gut. It’s actually the same size as a cat brain, would you believe? I don’t know if you know that, but when I heard that I freaked out that your stomach can have that many neurons inside of it.

Juli Bauer: Yeah!

Lisa Bilyeu: So if it’s got that many neurons, think about; it’s like a motherboard, right? It’s speaking to your brain. And so if ketogenic has already proven it can help inflammation and it can help the mind, what can it actually do to the gut? And that’s when we’re like; ok, what does ketogenic mean?

So we read the book Keto Clarity so that I could understand it more. And then understand ratios. I went on a 2-to-1 ratio. Which means for every combined protein and carbohydrate, if that’s a 1, I need to have twice as much fat.

Juli Bauer: Hmm. Ok.

Lisa Bilyeu: so, instead of having eggs, I would have egg yolk. Olive oil, coconut oil, cutting down my protein dramatically. So for a while, I was on a ketogenic diet. It really helped with the inflammation of my digestion. But it never got me to completely heal.

So imagine one day you’re feeling good, and someone says, “Hey, let’s go and get a burger and let’s have some fries.” Even one fry or one thing out of the norm, it would completely wreck me again. So then I started thinking; this doesn’t seem right. The ketogenic diet is helping me to a point, but it’s not actually taking me all the way to; “Now I’m better.”

So that then led me down another journey of redoing my gut biome and looking into how do I replace the bacteria that shouldn’t be there, and how do I enhance the bacteria that should be there. And that’s pretty much the journey that I’m on right now. And I’m working with a company called Viome. And they are incredible. My husband knows the owner. So they’ve basically taken me on as a case, and they’re breaking everything down.

So the first step was I need to go onto grass-fed meat. That’s actually how I started going into paleo, which I’d never done before. So I started on grass-fed meat, and then they realized that I actually do have SIBO. And I don’t know if anybody knows what SIBO is.

Juli Bauer: I don’t even know what SIBO is.

Lisa Bilyeu: So it actually stands for small intestine bacterial overgrowth.

Juli Bauer: Ok.

Lisa Bilyeu: It means I have an overgrowth of bacteria, both good and bad, in my small intestines.

Juli Bauer: And how do they test for that?

Lisa Bilyeu: You basically do a stool sample. And in the stool sample, it can tell where your bacteria is and how much of it you have. It was pretty crazy to see my results. And when I got my results, they were pretty astonished about how bad they were. And the good news was that understanding the overall, then you can break it down into steps on how to then get better. So it’s kind of like saying; I’m going to drive to Vegas but I’m not actually going to look at the roadmap on how to get there. Well, good luck trying to get to Vegas! If you don’t know how to get there. {laughs}

Juli Bauer: Mm-hmm.

Lisa Bilyeu: So that’s basically how they took my gut. And now I’m on this roadmap. And step one was I had to eliminate all the good bacteria in my small intestine. Which means I had to starve it.

Juli Bauer: Ugh!

Lisa Bilyeu: Yeah. So for the last month, I’ve had to go back to just a meat and fat diet. I couldn’t have any vegetables. My diet, literally every single day, was beef, lamb, chicken, coconut oil, olive oil, and salt.

Juli Bauer: Oh my goodness!

Lisa Bilyeu: And I could start to dabble in eggs, and I could start to dabble in bacon if I felt ok. But that was every single meal, breakfast lunch and dinner, and that’s what I’ve been eating for the last four weeks.

Juli Bauer: Wow!

Lisa Bilyeu: Then it’s; ok that was step one. Now things have actually changed in my digestion and I’m onto step two. So I’ve got rid of all the bacteria in my small intestine, and everything’s been pushed down into my large intestine, and now I have to rebuild back that bacteria. So now I have to add back things like bok choy. I have to have collard greens. So I’ve got a very strict regimen on what I do, when I do it, how much I do it. And so this has been a battle; everything I just told you is a period of two years.

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Lisa Bilyeu: And I’m still not obviously in the clear. I’m kind of working towards it. But I find after all this time, you’ve got to find the joy in the small things, and you’ve got to find the empowerment in being able to do it. Like, “Wow, today I really crushed it and I didn’t feel badly! I had my mind focused on what I was doing.” So I’ve been giving myself brain tricks to really keep myself motivated. Because it can bring you down. And you can start feeling sorry for yourself. But I’m one of those people that feeling sorry for yourself doesn’t help. And if it’s true that there really is a mind-body connection between the gut and the brain, the more I feel sorry for myself the more my gut is just going to be in more disarray.

Juli Bauer: Yeah. It’s really interesting to hear this stuff, especially right now. My husband is dealing with very similar things to what you’re saying.

Lisa Bilyeu: Oh wow.

Juli Bauer: He did a nutrition test, and he’s allergic to pork, and chicken, and oranges, and everything he was eating pretty much every single day. So of course he’s having those inflammatory responses based on maybe this leaky gut that he’s going through. So he’s cutting out all of these things.

Do you have a hard time finding this balance of; how do you go out right now and hang out with your friends while you’re trying to dial in this nutrition? And your friends want to go to a bar, or want to go to a restaurant? How are you balancing that? Are you just eating before so you can still go to those social functions? Or you’re like; you know what, I have to stay home and put my mind somewhere else. How are you balancing that going through such a tough time? And your real life still going on around you?

Lisa Bilyeu: Yeah, Juli, that’s a really great question. And it’s been an evolution. It’s definitely easy to feel sorry for yourself. It’s definitely easy to give every excuse under the sun why you can’t do something, or why something’s not possible, you know. And I just don’t allow myself to wallow in that.

So every day I start fresh, and I say; ok, how am I feeling? Sometimes I’m feeling very tired because I haven’t been able to sustain enough calories in my body for that day or the day before. And so I just tell myself; you get what you focus on. And I have certain phrases and quotes that I repeat to myself, because it’s so powerful to remind yourself of what you’re trying to get to. And my goal is to get my gut in check.

So if that’s my goal, and my own mindset is holding me back, then it’s counter intuitive. So I just tell myself; “Lisa, thinking like this isn’t going to help. You get what you focus on. What are you focusing on? Are you focusing on the pain? Are you focusing on that you can’t go out with your friends? Or you’re focusing that every step of the way you’re going to be more stronger and powerful for going through this.”

So when it comes to; a perfect example actually is I had to travel a couple of weeks ago for my cousin’s birthday. And we were going to Vegas. And Vegas is; you’re supposed to be able to let go, right? Have some alcohol. Eat as much as you like. Party; all of these things that I personally love to do. And I started getting myself a little in disarray, because I was like; what if I can’t find a place to eat? What if I get sick? What if I’m on the plane because the inflammation hurts. My stomach. So I started thinking about it, and my husband was just like; stop thinking like that!

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Lisa Bilyeu: If you’re thinking all the negative thoughts, then what’s going to happen is yes, your tummy will hurt on the plane. And yes, when you get there, you’re going to get yourself all anxious that you don’t know where to eat. So if you know all the worries that may happen. If you can predict the problems, then preempt it. It’s like a business.

Juli Bauer: Totally.

Lisa Bilyeu: And at this point, we’ve built enough businesses to understand how process works, and how each step matters, and have your eye on the prize. So I feel ok; let’s do it like that. What are my concerns? My concerns are what if I can’t eat out? Alright, Lisa, go onto Yelp, stop being ridiculous. Go onto Yelp, look at restaurants, find places that have grass-fed meat. Step number one.

Ok, well what if you’re on the plane and you’re in pain? Ok, well take yourself through those steps. Preempt it. There’s nothing you can do if you’re on the plane, but I know that my husband is very comforting for me. So I let him know; hey babe, if I’m on the plane and I’m not feeling well, this is what I need from you. I need XYZ. I need you to be sweet. I want you to put your hand on my lap. Preempt all the things I’m going to need emotionally.

And then warn everybody so that I’m never ever put in a position where I feel uncomfortable, that I feel like I have to tag along or join into something where if I’m in pain or if I can’t participate. So I told my whole family; look guys, this is the situation. I may not be able to come to the club tonight. I may be in pain. So please don’t put pressure on me. I’m going to do everything I can to be there. But if I have to leave, then I’m going to leave. And everyone was very sympathetic and understanding.

My husband had an exit plan. He’s like; alright. If you’re in pain, this is what we do. I grab your hand, I’ll text everybody, we’ll shoot out the door. So everything allowed me to bring my anxiety levels down, and that really, really helped. Because I like to think; the pain is inevitable. So if all I’m worried about is the pain coming; well, hey, there’s no surprise. It’s going to come. So if it’s inevitable, just plan for it.

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Lisa Bilyeu: So that was really how I approached it.

Juli Bauer: How has it been for you guys as your relationship has grown, and your illness has changed over the years. How has that been for your relationship? Has it brought you guys closer? Was it challenging to get through as a couple? What has that been like? Because I always wonder, when I see people go through even much worse, of cancer, and being in a relationship how that puts turmoil on the relationship. What has it been like for you guys?

Lisa Bilyeu: Yeah. That is a great question. And it has been an evolution because one, it’s; not that I ever doubted it, but it’s just shown that my husband has been willing to go through this entire thing without one ounce of complaint on himself. So knowing that you have that support system; you take your vows, and you say through thick and thin, for better or for worse. But it really does make a difference when you’re in that situation.

So feeling like I had the support really helped. But look; at the end of the day, I’m not going to pretend that just support is everything. It’s not. And there are days where I’m super emotional, and I’m maybe acting a little crazy. And he’s the one calling me on it. He’s like; babe, you have to understand that you’re feeling like this. You’re feeling stressed because of your digestion, and just because it’s because of that it doesn’t mean that you can act crazy or you can be depressed or put a damper on something that can be beautiful. Like a trip to Vegas. He’s like, you’re going to be with your family. This is going to be amazing. And if all you’re doing is sitting here being negative, then you’re setting yourself up for failure. And I’m not going to let that happen.

So he was very harsh on me, as well, and my personality is I needed that. But of course, if you’re too hard; now I feel unloved. And for us, our communication has been the key. It’s been very honest. I’ve had to be very truthful with him about, hey I need tough love here, because I can’t get out of this vicious cycle that I’m in. Or look; I know you’re trying to give me tough love right now. I know it comes from somewhere, because you love me, but I can’t handle it. And what I actually need right now is a hug.

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Lisa Bilyeu: And really setting each other up for success instead of for disaster is so key. And him telling me what he needs. Because as the sick person, it’s so easy to say; woe is me, I need everyone to understand. I need everyone to just be kind of sympathetic to me. That doesn’t work. I don’t like feeling like that. I do not like feeling like an invalid. I do not like feeling like the woe is me type person.

So I changed my mindset into; this is happening to the both of us. This isn’t just me; it’s to the both of us. And I need to respect him and how he’s feeling as I’m going through this just as much as he’s being sweet and respecting me. So obviously things change. We’re not able to go out for dinner right now. So that is on him as well, it’s not just happening to me. We’re not able to have alcohol, go out, and have a fun night out. Obviously intimacy; that has had to change sometimes because if I’m in pain, I’m sorry, I can’t be intimate. But I want to also be understanding to the face that he has to deal with that too.

Juli Bauer: Yeah. Has he, while you’ve gone through this process, has he changed his diet along with you? You’re obviously both healthy people already to begin with, but as your diet has had to change, has he gone to just protein and fat along with you or has he cut out alcohol altogether. How have you guys kind of maneuvered around that?

Lisa Bilyeu: Yeah, we really have always had a healthy somewhat lifestyle. And so whenever we would have pizza, go out, kind of splurge, we always did it together and it always became date night. So that actually has been one thing that’s been hard for us to change. And it’s like; ok, instead of having our enjoyment on going out and having some alcohol and having food, why don’t we play video games? Why don’t we go swimming with our puppies? So we’re just changing what our enjoyment is.

Now that doesn’t mean, obviously, that he shouldn’t go out and eat. And I’ve said that to him. But for him; and I think this is actually more for him than it is for me. But he’s been like; no, if you can’t do it, I don’t want to do it. Because for me, it’s been a shared experience. And in doing it without you; A, he doesn’t get as much pleasure. But also, he’s just like; I want to feel like I’m there for you. So even if you don’t care, he’s like for me as a man and as your husband, I want to feel good about being there for you.

So he doesn’t drink alcohol. He hasn’t had any cake. When we were in Vegas, they brought naan bread to the table. I don’t know if you know what naan bread is, but it is so good.

Juli Bauer: Oh yeah. So good! I haven’t had it in so, so long.

Lisa Bilyeu: Oh my god, it was one of those that I haven’t had in so long. But you know when it’s in front of you, and you smell it it’s like; oh yeah. So they bring it to the table in Vegas, and there’s 10 of us sitting around the table and everyone is indulging. I said, babe why don’t you have some? And he’s like, no thank you. I was like, no, I actually, it would make me happy to see you eat it because you kind of want to live vicariously through somebody else.

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Lisa Bilyeu: And he was like; no babe, I really don’t want to. He’s like; I want to support you. And this is more for me than it is for you, but I want to feel like I’m there for you. So we have those very honest conversations about what we both need for each other, and for ourselves as well.

Juli Bauer: That’s awesome.

Lisa Bilyeu: But I’d actually like to ask you the same question. If your husband is going through these issues, how have you found it, as the partner?

Juli Bauer: It’s been; so I cook for part of my living. I cook recipes on a regular basis, and they include a lot of things that hen can’t have. Like, pork and onions right now, and carrots. And things that he just can’t have so it’s kind of hard when I’m cooking for the blog and then I have; I made these turkey pot pies the other day for the blog, and he can’t have any of it because it has things that he can’t have in it and it’s just sitting in the fridge.

And it makes me feel guilty. And I’ve told him, I’m trying to set him up for success in making him breakfast so he can start off on the right foot every morning, and he’s not like trying to figure it out himself when he has work to get to and traffic to sit in.

So, sometimes if we don’t have something available in the house because I feel like I’m failing him because we’ve just never had this before and this is a fairly new first month out. But it’s been really good for him to cut out alcohol, because alcohol is such poison to the body anyways. And it’s funny because I don’t drink that often, and then once he was told he can’t have alcohol, then I felt like I actually wanted the alcohol.

Lisa Bilyeu: {laughing} Isn’t that interesting?

Juli Bauer: It’s so weird. It’s like; and I’m the person. I can’t say that I can’t have something because then I want it so much more. And I stay away from gluten because it makes me feel terrible. So it’s not even that I can’t have it; it’s like I don’t want to eat it because it makes me have stomach cramps and I can’t stand up and I’m miserable.

But it’s hard as the partner of feeling completely lost in what to do. You can’t just fix it for him. And I’m sure your husband feels that way for you. You can’t be like; oh I’ll just make these dinners for you and you’ll be fine. Or I’ll get all the groceries for you, and you’ll just be healed in six weeks. So it’s just feeling lost. Like you can’t really do anything. And not knowing who to turn to for answers. And that’s why I loved listening to your podcast with Girls Gone WOD. Because I’m like; I’d love to hear how she searched for answers. Because you think you can trust this doctor, and then you go to a different doctor and they’re telling you something different. So how do you know who to trust?

It’s just a weird, new chapter in our life. And hopefully we can get past it and doing lots of bone broth and just kind of clearing those foods out. And I just try to remind him, this is only for right now and you’ll get past it, and you’ll be able to have onions again someday.

Lisa Bilyeu: {laughs} Right!

Juli Bauer: But it’s just this piece of your life is going to be a short piece compared to the full length of it. It’s just sad seeing someone else not the happiest they could be.

Lisa Bilyeu: Yeah! And the one thing actually that you said is one thing that we’re dealing with right now. And I wonder if you guys are, as well. Is your identity. I wrapped my identity for so long as being cofounder of Quest Nutrition, and then not being able to eat our product really did affect me. And then with identity in your partner, my husband’s identity is to protect me. And to make sure that nothing bad happens to me. So for him, because I’m going through so much of this health thing, I think it really does affect him in feeling like he can’t protect me or he’s not getting me better. So he spends hours a day researching the microbiome. Every morning he gets up at 4 a.m. and all he’s doing is reading.

So I know that’s kind of the struggle for him. And that’s one thing we do talk about, as well. Because again, it’s both of us going through this, not just me. So I actually wondered do you also feel like that with your husband. Where it’s like; you take care of him, you make him food, and now it’s like you have to change the way you do that.

Juli Bauer: Absolutely. And just things that are available in the house. Grocery shopping. Going to different grocery stores. And I don’t want to have something in the fridge that he can’t have, because then I have to tell him that he can’t have it.

Lisa Bilyeu: Right!

Juli Bauer: Like I had to do this morning.

Lisa Bilyeu: How do you feel about that? Does that upset you? Does it break your heart?

Juli Bauer: It does. He was like; what is this? I’m like; you can’t have it.

Lisa Bilyeu: Aww.

Juli Bauer: He was like, I’m just asking. I was like, I know. Just the person who has been there as I’ve pretty much started my business and my blog, and he’s tried every single one of my recipes. And then that piece of your relationship is just kind of taken away for the time being. It’s just so weird. It’s just a very feeling of trapped, when you’re trapped within your body. And I’ve been to that position where he is, where you’re just sick all the time and you feel terrible and I went through that. So I totally understand it. And it’s just so sad when you can’t help them, you can only really be there for them. And then do as much as you can. It’s sad. It sucks. It’s sad and it’s hard.

Lisa Bilyeu: Yeah.

Juli Bauer: It’s only, as you know, it’s a small chapter in your life, and you’re building for a better and healthier life together. And that’s what you’ll get to. The more you press through it.

Lisa Bilyeu: Yeah. And kind of going back to your earlier question, I really feel like this is a challenge, and it’s something that we’re working through. We’re learning so much about each other. We’re learning so much about ourselves that sometimes I get something like this can actually hurt a couple, and really be a problem in their relationship. But for us, it’s like we’ve got our eye on the prize and we know that this could be dangerous for our relationship. So we make sure that it’s not. Every step of the way we talk about it. We go over it.

And like you said, it changes. Right? You’ve had so long where you’re cooking, and your husband is trying it and now that’s not the case. It’s like, you have to adapt. And that was the case with me and my husband. Our date night was, let’s go out, let’s have a drink, let’s have some fun food. Really make a night of it whether we’re; maybe we travel for the weekend or something like that. And we can’t do that now.

Instead of falling into that trap of just being like, now we’re a couple that don’t go out, and we don’t spend time together, you’ve got to reassess. Ok, this is who we were, but this isn’t who we are now. So how do we still get the pleasures that we got before? How do we get them in doing something else? And that’s why, like I said earlier, we play video games and we swim with our puppies. And now he reads to me. So we found all these other bonding things that we can do that don’t require us to go out to a restaurant. Or don’t require us to have to put ourselves in a situation where now I’ll be completely in trouble with my digestion or something like that.

And that is so important when it comes to relationships and dealing with something like this. I think it’s very important to make sure that you readjust. Instead of going; oh well, can’t do that. That sucks. And before you know it, it does weigh on your relationship.

Juli Bauer: Yeah, absolutely. I really like that you said adapting; because I think that’s what relationships are. It’s not like you married this person, and you’re the exact same person throughout your life.

Lisa Bilyeu: {laughing} Right.

Juli Bauer: You really have to adapt together, whether you deal with an illness, or a death, or something. We all have those crazy moments, and you have to adapt together. I love that you said that, because that’s totally what it is. And that’s the stage you’re at. I think every year you’re at a new adapting stage. But these are just harder ones than others.

Lisa Bilyeu: Yeah, and I’m just going to build one more onto that. Because that was so spot on, what you said. People really; do you ever hear, “Oh my god, but you’ve changed so much! You’re not the same person you were!”

Juli Bauer: 100% all the time. {laughing}

Lisa Bilyeu: That makes me laugh! Because it’s like, of course I’m not the same person. Thank god I’m not the same person! Life is about growing and learning. So if you’re only judging someone by, you’re not the same person they were. Or you’re judging them now because they’ve changed. I think you’re just stetting yourself up for disaster. And so in the adaptation of that, you have to keep growing. You have to be aware that other people are going to be growing. You make sure, at least in a relationship, that you’re growing in the same direction.

Juli Bauer: Totally. {laughs} That’s like; I get that all the time on a blog. They’re like; I wish you were like yourself when you started your blog. I’m like, that was 2011! When I was like 23 years old! Why would I ever want to be my 23-year-old self who was insecure, broke as hell, unhappy every day.

Lisa Bilyeu: {laughs} Right.

Juli Bauer: It’s so strange when people say that, because they are not; hopefully they’re not like their 23-year-old self.

Lisa Bilyeu: Right!

Juli Bauer: Who would want to be that same person. Growing and changing is the best part of life.

Lisa Bilyeu: Right, exactly. And hopefully; me personally, I see myself as being quite confident. But I’m hoping that next year I look back and go; oh, Lisa you’re an idiot. I can’t believe you thought like this. Or you did this. Or you thought this was right. I want to be new, and I want to re, I guess, invigorate myself every step of the way, right?

Juli Bauer: Absolutely.

Lisa Bilyeu: Yeah. So when it comes to stuff like health; a relationship is already difficult to make sure that you’re always on the same page and that you’re growing together. So when you get something like a health issue that can come in and really disrupt everything you have, I just see it as this is a chance to empower myself. This is a chance to get stronger. This is actually a chance for me and my husband to bond even more. And that I get excited about. So I think change and adaptation should be exciting for people instead of a fear.

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Juli Bauer: Well, you mentioned this a couple of times. You have two dogs.

Lisa Bilyeu: I do!

Juli Bauer: Two dogs. I don’t know if you’ve heard it, but my French Bulldog is sleeping on the couch cushion behind me, so he lets out a few snores here and there.

Lisa Bilyeu: Aww! Jackson, right? If I remember correctly.

Juli Bauer: Yes. He’s sleeping right behind me. So I bring that up, because as I was looking through your Instagram, I saw this picture of your two dogs. And then you’re obviously very good at drawing, correct?

Lisa Bilyeu: OH, thank you. {laughs}

Juli Bauer: You have your two puppies, and then a picture of a baby that you drew. So I was instantly interested to see what this was about. And you talk about, in this Instagram post, that after 15 years of marriage, you guys have decided not to have children. And you were kind of; you just thought that was something you did, because that was always; I think that’s a very social norm.

Lisa Bilyeu: yeah.

Juli Bauer: To think; you’re a woman, you will get married and you will have kids and you will raise these children. That’s kind of what; at least for me. I was always told, and continually told, that I should be doing now that I’m married. So can you kind of talk about that? Since I’ve talked about this a lot on my blog and podcast. I try to be very vocal about it. Because I don’t think we have many women in the world who speak about not having children. And why they’ve chosen that path because it can be very frowned upon by other people.

And when I’ve mentioned it, I’ll have people that say, “Oh, you just don’t want to change your body. It’s so selfish of you.” Like, no, there are 400 other reasons that go into it. Not only growing a human inside me, but all the other reasons of having children why it’s very much a stressor for me. So how did you guys kind of come to decide that? Can you talk a little bit about that?

Lisa Bilyeu: Yes, Juli! I’m so excited that we’re going to talk about this. Because I was listening to one of your podcasts about kids, and I was like; oh my god, this woman is like my jam! We’ve got to talk about this.

Juli Bauer: {laughs}

Lisa Bilyeu: And because I feel the same; there are just not enough people right now that are speaking our, or even really thinking that they have a choice. So I love that when I was listening to your podcast, and just your take on it. So thank you for asking me this question.

The one first big bold statement I’m going to say is what’s wrong with being selfish?

Juli Bauer: I know. That’s how I feel! That’s totally how I feel.

Lisa Bilyeu: Right? Like, not having kids is selfish. Yes, it is. What’s wrong with that? It’s not like they’re alive and now I’m abandoning them because I would rather be selfish than take care of them. They don’t exist. So right now, all that exists in my life is me, my husband, and our business.

So anyway, that’s just my big bold statement. But I can kind of backtrack a little on how we evolved into this. I’m Greek Orthodox, so growing up it was just totally assumed I’m going to get married and have kids. No question about it. I didn’t even question it. I met my husband fairly young, got married, I was 22. He was like, immediately, look babe. I’m not looking to have kids at least for another couple of years. I want to really enjoy you. I want your selfish time together, just husband and wife.

So, great. I was totally on board. I was a housewife, so when we were in America, we had discussed what our roles were in our relationship. So what are we actually looking for out of a partner. What am I looking for from him as a husband; what is he looking for as a wife. What does our future look like. And we really broke all of this down. And my husband was like; look. I’m very ambitious. I want to build a company. I want to make movies. So that’s the path that I really want to go on. But obviously if you want to have kids, I’m going to support you. Because I’m never going to tell my wife, if you’ve dreamed about having kids your whole life, if that’s who you are I’m never going to take that away from me. Just like he wouldn’t want me to take away from him about his ambition.

So we’d kind of laid out the ground rules. So I was a house wife, I was taking care of him. We called it Bilyeu Enterprises, so I was taking care of Bilyeu Enterprises. Which is basically the bills, the house, taking care of his food. He didn’t have to think about anything except work.

And then Quest Nutrition came along. And I went from being a housewife to basically help build this billion-dollar company in five years. And it was one of those very slow progress. So it was; oh, just box some bars on my rug and take it to the post office. Ok, well we’re doing a bit better, so maybe I should start shipping out of my friend’s garage. Ok, well the company’s doing a bit better. So it kind of; I didn’t really mean to become an entrepreneur at the beginning. I kind of just stumbled into it as a support system for my husband and the business he was doing with his business partners.

And then over time, I started really enjoying the growth. And I started really enjoying learning new skills. And I started really enjoying understanding business. And I started building the shipping department of Quest. And before I knew it, we were a billion-dollar company, and I was running the department, and I had 14 employees under me. And I had learned about imports and exports and deliveries and freight. I just learned so much.

And I had gained so much confidence out of learning. And once I then went from running the shipping department to now going back to my true love, which is film making. I started building a studio within Quest Nutrition. So we were making commercials for the company. We were making recipes, and we did a cookbook. And that was so exciting, because it was then going back to my true love.

So here I was, from a housewife flash forward five years later, I’ve built a media studio within the company and really finding my passion. And I was so driven. And I love it. And here I’m going; I’m not getting any younger. At some point I have to decide; do I want children? And what does that look like? Because I don’t want to be that person that blinks and goes, oh well I missed my window.

Juli Bauer: Do you mind me asking how old you are?

Lisa Bilyeu: No, not at all. I’m 38.

Juli Bauer: Ok.

Lisa Bilyeu: This was probably about 2 years ago. So about 36. We kept putting off kids. Like, oh the company is doing so well and right now it doesn’t make sense. Oh, the company is doing so well, right now we shouldn’t. So we kind of justified why we kept putting it off.

And then a couple of years ago, I sat my husband down and we spoke about it. I just said; look. Let’s lay out everything. All the things we don’t want to admit, all the things we’re embarrassed to ever say out loud. But let’s just put it down. And then we can actually make a decision. So we laid everything out. And it was, if we’re going to have kids, what does that look like?

And for me, it meant I would want to step away. Because I don’t want to have someone else bring up my children. So it means that I would give up what I was doing. Ok, well how do I feel about that? I love what I’m doing. So ok, well there’s a bit of a debate there. But I get that if you don’t have children, you never know what it’s going to feel like, right? You ask a mother what it’s like to have a kid, and the first thing they’ll say is, they’ll be no other love in your life like you feel about your child.

Juli Bauer: Mm-hmm.

Lisa Bilyeu: And I accept that that’s true. I don’t debate that. I just don’t feel it because I don’t have a kid right now. So the emotion isn’t real to me. But the emotion of being a female entrepreneur is. I feel that every day.

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Lisa Bilyeu: So, ok. Now I have to weigh those options. What does my life look like with my husband, as a relationship between me and him? He said he never wants to be the father that’s absence. Ok, well he’s an ambitious man who works 15 hours a day, at least. Actively works on things. He’s always doing stuff. But 15 hours a day, imagine, he’s working. He works out because for him the body is very important. The connection between the body and mind. So he works out; that’s part of his identity. I would never ask him to change that.

So now, the moments he has free, he’s going to want to spend with his children. Because he doesn’t want to be an absent father. And as the wife, I get it. I wouldn’t want him to be an absent father. So we broke that down. Now, where does that leave time for me and him? It doesn’t.

Juli Bauer: Mm-hmm.

Lisa Bilyeu: So then we had the question that people don’t want to ask themselves, but we did. Right now, he’s my number one and I’m his number one. Period. Well, when we have kids, he’s going to become his number two, and I’m going to become his number two. I’m not his priority anymore, and he’s not mine.

And being brutally honest; because I think that’s how it should be. I think if we were going to have kids, that is the right decision for us to make. But I don’t want that.

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Lisa Bilyeu: Again, going back to being selfish. I’m absolutely going to be selfish because this is the life that I have. And it’s not like I’m abandoning a child, because they don’t exist yet. So I am coming from of an utterly selfish perspective. What do I selfishly want? I want to be my husband’s number one. What I do selfishly want? I want to be a female entrepreneur.

And when we can be honest, with no judgement. Right? You can’t judge yourself on it. You’ve just got to be honest about it. And he didn’t judge me for it. He didn’t say, oh your less of a woman now. Oh, you’re not nurturing. You know; all these things that I feared people would think about me. Or that he would think about me. Because in my head, that’s what a woman should be like. A woman should be nurturing. A woman should be a care taker.

And now I feared, am I less of a woman because I’ve chosen to not have children? And we had that talk. And he was honest with me about it. He goes; babe, I don’t care. He’s like; that doesn’t reflect on how I feel about you. You’re still going to be you. You’re still nurturing. I love the spark in your eye when you are doing business. When I feel like I’ve done a good job; he’s like, you have this smile and spark in your eye that I love. And so if that’s what it’s going to take for you to have that spark in your eye, and it’s not going to be children, he’s like, I don’t care.

Juli Bauer: That’s awesome.

Lisa Bilyeu: So I could let go of that. But for a year, if I’m going to be truthfully honest with you, Juli, I couldn’t say it out loud.

Juli Bauer: Yeah. Yeah.

Lisa Bilyeu: Because of the judgement, right? You even just said that you get people that come to you and say, hey, you’re being selfish. And I so feared that that I felt guilty about it. Which is crazy! Why do I feel guilty? It’s my life!

Juli Bauer: Yeah. That’s so weird when people say that. Because just like you said at the beginning, what’s wrong with being selfish? If you’re giving back into the world in so many ways, why is it wrong to be selfish in your own life? When you’re still being the best person you can be. You just don’t have another little human tagged right to you. It’s so interesting. And I see; well, how did you family deal with that? Since you come from such a huge family who kind of just expected that?

Lisa Bilyeu: Yeah. My parents still haven’t given up. At one point, I just had to tell my mom straight to her face. “Mom, I love you, but I’m not going to have kids. And I know that’s breaking your heart right now, and I need you to really think about it and embrace the emotion you’re going through of the loss of the grandchildren that you desperately wanted from me. And I’m going to be here if you have any questions. But I need you to know that as your daughter, I’m so happy. And if your primary goal is for your daughter to be happy, then you should absolutely remind yourself that I am.”

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Lisa Bilyeu: So if you need to grieve, if you need to go through this emotion, then I get it. I’m here for you. And again, just being empathetic to other people and how they’re going to feel about your decision making.

My dad, on the other hand, bless him hasn’t given up as much. And he still gives me the whole speech of; you spend so much time and energy being successful. Now that you are, what are you going to do? You’re just going to give your money to your dogs. {laughs} He does all that.

Juli Bauer: {laughs} You’re like, if I could, I would totally give all the money to my dogs. Duh.

Lisa Bilyeu: I know!

Juli Bauer: Well let’s actually talk about your business. Because you have multiple businesses. And what is so crazy is as you’re talking about Quest Nutrition. And I was doing a little research about it, and just kind of how long this company has been out. And when you talk about it, it is a billion-dollar company. Not just M; million. It is a billion with a B. Which is insane to me. Is that so crazy as you’ve seen this business grow? How crazy is it to see that it’s a billion-dollar company, as you’ve seen it grow over the years? That’s just bananas to me.

Lisa Bilyeu: Yeah. The funny thing is my personality is because I pride myself on growth, and not what I’ve really achieved in the past. I’m always future facing. That I’m like; we’ve built this company. It’s been crazy incredible. But I’ve been in the trenches all the way, so I don’t really pick my head up much to really think about it. It’s all been like; what are the skills I’m getting every day. Oh my god, I just did this, I’m so proud! This is so exciting. This commercial just hit this many views! I’m so excited! It’s the small little things along the way.

But I am very proud of the size that it’s gotten to, and the reason being that has now allowed me to do what I do today. So, Quest Nutrition was definitely about the body. How do you help people that are already on their journey make better choices? Now, Impact Theory, the new company we do, is how do you actually get people to start that path in the first place? Because we did so well in helping people that were already wanting to get healthy. But you look at people, even in my own family. My mom was severely overweight. And here I am, having helped build one of the largest nutrition companies in the world, and my mom is still overweight. And it’s like; mom, I’ll give you free food. I’ll hire a chef. And she just couldn’t lose the weight.

My husband is the same. He comes from a morbidly obese family. And he realized that it doesn’t matter how much you can help somebody once they’re on that journey. How do you help someone before they get on the journey? How do you break them free of that? Because if the mind is not there, then forget about the body. You can’t help the body.

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Lisa Bilyeu: So our goal is to really now help the mind. So we started the company Impact Theory. And that is solely based on looking at the mindset. And looking at how you overcome hardship, and how you achieve anything you set your mind to. Without limitations. So we bring on celebrities, we bring on incredible people, have achieved great things. We bring on neuroscientists. We bring on anybody to do with the brain or who has worked on their mindset to overcome obstacles.

Because let’s face it; everybody has overcome an obstacle. There isn’t one person out there, whether you’re looking at Richard Branson, Oprah Winfrey, whether it’s business, whether it’s health. Everybody has hit road blocks. But how do you overcome them? That’s how we make a change, I think. Is learning how you overcome them.

Juli Bauer: So how long ago did you start Quest Nutrition, and then when did you guys start Impact Theory? Because you started Quest Nutrition with your husband, correct?

Lisa Bilyeu: Correct. My husband has two other business partners. And they had a company that they all hated. It was a technology company. They were miserable. My husband was miserable. And they said, we need to change what we do. And we have to do something that we love every single day. And what is that? So they sat down and were like; look. We all love health, we all love fitness. The one problem we have is eating healthy when we’re on the go. I would make him homemade protein bars. His business partners, their wives would make them homemade protein bars.

And so we’re like; if we were able to make this shelf stable, then this could be a product that no one else; it’s not on the market. Right now all the products on the market either taste terrible, which isn’t going to encourage anyone to eat healthy. Or, it’s a protein bar disguised, right, and it’s really just a candy bar because it’s got so much sugar in it. But what if we actually do something that tastes good and is good for you?

So they started it, and I just loved the idea, loved the notion, so I jumped in with both feet. One of the other business partners, his wife was working on it. And it just became this big group endeavor where we every day had our own roles. And we went from hand rolling the protein bars ourselves in a rental kitchen. And there was probably about 6 of us. Rolling pins, knives. It would take us 8 hours to make 2000 protein bars. And now just to give you an idea, we make approximate 1.5 million bar a day.

Juli Bauer: {laughs} Oh my god! That’s insane.

Lisa Bilyeu: {laughs}

Juli Bauer: That’s so crazy.

Lisa Bilyeu: Yeah, so that was incredible. But then going on to Impact Theory, it’s like; you’ve affected the body with Quest Nutrition. It’s so much fun, and the bars are fun, and it’s such a fun company. But it’s got it handled now. What value am I actually bringing? And again, I just always look inward and say, am I growing? What value am I bringing to the world? What value am I bringing to myself?

And then the decision of kids; that was part of it. And it’s like; ok, well if I’m not having kids, what is the thing that I’m going to fear about not having kids? And one of it is actually having an impact on people. And I think if I really broke down why I wanted children, I think it was that. I want to have an impact. I want to see this little thing grown and hopefully have this excitement in their own lives because of me.

So if that’s what I’m looking for in a child, well I can actually do that on a global scale. Now that Quest Nutrition has been so successful, I can take the finances we’ve gotten from that company and really do something that’s meaningful to my heart. And really have impact on the world at scale. And that’s why, now my heart and soul is really in this new company. And how Quest Nutrition has played such a great part in that evolution of my future and where my goal is to go to.

Juli Bauer: That’s awesome. So you guys started off as bars, and then you expanded to a full line. When you started off as bars, how much longer until you started expanding your line? What made you guys go into different, from pasta to protein powders, to chips. How did you decide to kind of expand it? What made you want to do that? You guys were doing obviously well with the bars.

Lisa Bilyeu: Yeah. It was definitely a collaborative effort. My husband’s business partner ran the R&D department. Everyone had their roles in the company. So one of the guys was running R&D. My husband was the president of the company, so he was more about culture and marketing and image and branding and things like that. And his other business partner was the finance. So they had great skillsets to come together as a team.

Obviously, me my background is filmmaking. So I came in working with marketing to build the studio. But as a collaborative, you’re listening to the audience. You’re listening to what people are looking for. And the one thing was; the bars are great. But the negative connotation of a protein bar, for whatever reason, people frown upon it. They’re like, “Oh, you’re one of those people.” I don’t know if you’ve ever found people like that. But anyway.

Juli Bauer: All the time. {laughs}

Lisa Bilyeu: Right. So it’s like; ok, how do we get past just being a protein bar company? And people started using our bars for recipes. And so they were melting bars. They were adding almond milk, and coconut oil. They were just adding things and they were making these recipes. And it’s like; wow. You’ve not taken a product of ours and started making foods that other people don’t frown upon. Right? Cheesecakes. Everybody loves. Ice cream. All these other cool recipes from our protein bars.

So then it made us think beyond that. What ready made meals can we do that people naturally go to? What are the things that get people into trouble? Well, it’s chips. It’s cakes. So how do you make a cake? If you have protein powder that could use as a substitute for flour; ok, well now people can make cakes. So it kind of evolved from that.

So many people try to change people’s behavior, right? “Don’t eat this cake. Don’t want French fries. Don’t want ice cream.” But it’s like, who are you fooling? Ice cream tastes amazing. French fries taste amazing. So telling people not to eat it; you’re trying to change human behavior. So instead of trying to change human behavior, what if we start leveraging it? What if we start going; ok. Well they’re going to eat cake, so if I make a cake that tastes so damn good you’re not going to question it, but it’s good for you? Now, as a brand, as a company, you’ve basically given your fans what they’re looking for. And the fans now turn to you because they trust you as a company to be the company that listens. So that was really how we ended up expanding into protein powders and chips.

And again, fried foods. Going; well people love fried foods. How do you get a healthy fried food? Well, what is it about the fried foods that’s damaging? We’re damaging the fats, the oils, the heat. So we literally broke everything down. Said, ok what oil can you heat that can fry food that when you heat it it doesn’t damage the fats. So we looked into oils. So the R&D department just literally, in all credit to them, crushed it and found solutions and we did tests. And that’s why we came out with a cookbook. It’s like, how do we get these recipes into people’s hands? Well now it’s an option. Now if you turn to bad food, it’s because you’ve chosen to. Versus, I don’t have any choice. That for me is always a struggle. I like to be able to have a choice.

Juli Bauer: How do you balance knowing what is so good for our bodies, which is whole foods. We need clean protein; grass-fed, grass finished, humanely raised protein. We need fruits and vegetables. We need real, whole foods. How do you make sure your consumer understands that a Quest Nutrition bar for every single meal and every single snack is not what they need on a regular basis? Because I feel like I’ve turned to bars at points in my life that I’m like; oh, it’s a nutrition bar. I can have this as a supplement to my meal. And then you almost get addicted to it because it’s so easy.

Lisa Bilyeu: Right.

Juli Bauer: How do you find that balance of knowing what is best for your consumer, but while still promoting a product you believe in. You just don’t believe in it at every single meal, every single snack, every single day.

Lisa Bilyeu: Yeah. That’s such a good question. So very early on we realized when it comes to food, you can’t preach. Food is like a religion.

Juli Bauer: Yeah, big time.

Lisa Bilyeu: Where it’s like, if you’re a Jehovah’s Witness and you’re going to someone who is a Muslim and you’re telling them to their face why they shouldn’t be Muslim; it’s not going to work. And now all you do is push people away. Your voice isn’t heard. So we realized very early on that as a food company, we can’t preach.

We can only say; hey guys, this is a product we believe in, if you want it, here it is. As an individual; for myself, I listen to my body. I just pay attention. I have learned also to not be dogmatic. I used to be so hardcore about carbs are bad for you. Well, now the things that I’m learning in the studies I’m reading and all the new science that’s coming out, may then combat that idea. So if it does, I don’t care about being right. I just want to get to the right answer.

So if that means I have to adapt. If that means my mindset has to change, and my belief system has to change, then I’m willing to do it. So I’ve learned to never be dogmatic with other people about what they should eat. Because the science that exists now is going to develop. And in one year, in two years, in three years; there’s going to be new technologies out that are going to show; oh. That thing that we thought last year is actually wrong.

I think about the earth. Once upon a time, we thought it was flat. We didn’t have enough science to back up that it wasn’t flat. So everyone just believed it; it made sense, right? Well of course it’s flat, because you don’t topple. But new science came out that proved that was wrong. I see that in our diet. New science will come out, people. And when it does, it’s going to start to show new things.

We’re only recently now talking about the microbiome. And how there’s the connection between the microbiome and the brain. Well, 5 years ago people weren’t talking like that. People would have said you’re nuts! 10 years ago. So again, I just try to not be dogmatic. I don’t preach to people about having to eat Quest bars. Especially because I can’t even eat them.

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Lisa Bilyeu: I would be a total hypocrite if I’m like; yeah, all you should eat is Quest bars, because I can’t digest artificial sweeteners right now. So me personally, I never preach. I will answer questions on what I’m doing. And if you have any questions or any queries, I will tell you what worked for me. But I will never say to people, this is how you should eat. This will make a difference. I will tell my story, and then leave it up to you to do your own judgement on what you should be eating.

Juli Bauer: Good. That’s kind of what you have to do. Especially with nutrition, is even with me. My diet is not right for you, and your own diet. So I can share what I eat on a regular basis, and I can share my recipes. But that doesn’t mean it’s going to work for you, and your lifestyle, and your family, and your health issues. Whatever is going on. So you really have to make your own decisions. You can’t base your own lifestyle off of someone else’s lifestyle. Which is so easy to do in the social media era we live in at this point.

Lisa Bilyeu: Yeah. Do you find people reach out to you and say, hey I’ve been doing your recipes? But I find that this doesn’t work or this doesn’t work. Do you find that that happens? And how do you react to it?

Juli Bauer: Not so much the recipes. But more so, I’ve been trying paleo and I haven’t been losing weight. Or, I’ve been working out on a regular basis. Or I’ve been doing CrossFit, because I’m big into CrossFit. And I haven’t seen the results that I’m wanting to. I’m not seeing any abs. I haven’t lost weight in my stomach.

So I get those sorts of questions on a regular basis. And it’s always like; how do I solve this issue. But I’m not there with them every single day. Seeing their diet choices. Seeing their lifestyle. Seeing their stressors. So it’s really hard to answer those types of questions and say; here is your answer. I have to say, you have to start doing studies on yourself. Because that’s the only way you’ll get an answer.

Lisa Bilyeu: Right.

Juli Bauer: Because that’s how I figured out my own stuff. Questioning myself, and what my lifestyle choices are, and how that’s manipulating and changing my body. And then take the steps to change it in a different direction.

Lisa Bilyeu: Yeah. That’s amazing.

Juli Bauer: Well I want to ask one last question, and that is about your Sheroic podcast. Which I think is the cutest name.

Lisa Bilyeu: {laughs} Thank you.

Juli Bauer: You cohost it with Cassy; what is it?

Lisa Bilyeu: Cassy Ho.

Juli Bauer: Ok, that’s what I thought. So how did you and Cassy meet up, and how did you start this podcast?

Lisa Bilyeu: Yeah, so Cassy Ho was actually a host on one of the shows that I was executive producer on at Quest. So one of my very first projects after building the studio was; we need a cooking show. And the CMO was like; you’ve got to speak to this woman, Cassy Ho. She posted about our bars. She’s a big influencer in the health space. And I really want to get her on; she should be the host of the show.

So she comes on, and at the time I look at her social numbers. I’m expecting her to be somewhat of a diva. To kind of come in, do the job, and leave. Not much input or heart to the project. And she comes in, and she was the complete opposite to everything I had thought she would be. She was super sweet, super humble. But above that, she was an amazing business woman.

So it was the first insight I ever had; and this was, I’m talking probably three years ago now. The real first insight I personally had of a YouTuber being an entrepreneur. I think that I’d personally had always dismissed them as more fame; like, oh it’s not really business. It’s fame. And here she was. She’s got her clothing line. And she’s thinking about sales. And she’s thinking about algorithm. You know. And she had such an incredible business mind, that I was like; wow, I really want to get to know her a bit more.

So we just clicked. We started hanging out. And before we knew it, we were the two girls that would go to each other whenever we wanted advice on business. Because we didn’t really know other people that were kind of in our position, where we both worked with a partner. Her boyfriend, now fiancé, is her partner. Obviously I work with my husband. So we had a lot of similarities in our lives. And I think it’s very refreshing when you can talk to somebody who can relate to the situation you’re in. Surround yourself, I think, with the people that can empower you. So she was very empowering for me, and I was for her.

And over time, we just very much believe on impact. Here I was, running Quest Nutrition. And then transitioning over to Impact Theory. For me, it was making an impact on people. And then when I really dissected it further; for me it was females. And for me, it was really wishing that there was voice out there that I could listen to, like if I was 16 again. I think part of all the issues I think got myself into trouble with; with diet, with health, and just with low self esteem and not feeling good about myself and feeling trapped. I felt alone, and I felt like no one else understands this or knows this.

Now, this was before social media existed. So I kind of thought; if I was 16 now, I would want women to talk about this. And as much as I’m not used to being out front, and I’m definitely more behind the scenes, there needs to be people that are empowering women that can tell these young girls out there; you don’t have to be trapped in your culture of expectations of having a child. You can be an entrepreneur.

So all these elements, I was like; there needs to be someone that can talk like this. So I went to Cassy’s studio one day, and she had built a podcast room. And I was like; Cassy, you’ve got to do a podcast! Oh my god, there has to be a woman out there that’s talking about this. You’re perfect for it! You’ve got to do it, you’ve got to do it, you’ve got to do it. And I just kept bugging her and kept bugging her.

And then after about a year, she was like; I just don’t know if I’ve got the time. I don’t know. Eventually, I was like; well, my personality is you don’t want for somebody else. If there’s a problem and you can see that you can solve it, jump in with both feet and solve it. Don’t wait for other people.

So I was like; am I going to have to do a podcast, to get this going? So we went out for dinner. I said to her; I think I’m going to have to do the podcast, Cassy. Because I can’t wait for you anymore. And she was like; oh, I’ll be your first guest. And I was like, ok if I do one first you be my first guest. If you do one first, vice versa. And then we parted ways, and within 24 hours she texted me. She was like; Lisa, should we just do a podcast together? And that’s where Sheroic was born.

Juli Bauer: That is awesome! I don’t know much about Cassy. I just looked at her Instagram, and it’s crazy! 1.4 million followers!

Lisa Bilyeu: Yeah!

Juli Bauer: That is bananas!

Lisa Bilyeu: Yeah. And she’s at 3.5 million on YouTube.

Juli Bauer: Oh my gosh! {Laughs} That is so many people.

Lisa Bilyeu: It is so many people. She is a true powerhouse. Again, I want to go; she’s got these people that are watching her videos. She does workout videos so people are watching them. But I only knew her as that. And I saw a completely different side to her when I got to know her. And I said; people need to see this side to you. People need to understand that it’s not luck that got you here. It’s not luck that made you a YouTube star. It’s not just your sweet and bubbly side that you show. You’re an incredible business woman. And you’re business savvy. And you understand market, and you understand consumer products. All these things that you’re learning.

You understand failure. You’ve fallen flat on your face a million times, and so have I. And yet all these other people out there thing; oh, you’re lucky. Right? If people don’t know my story, they’re like; oh you’re lucky with Quest Nutrition. Oh you’re lucky with Cassy’s company and her YouTube channel.

It’s like; let me tell you it’s got nothing to do with luck. It’s got to do with falling on your face a million times, wiping off the dirt, and moving on. And until you hear that, and realize there are these people that have actually done it, you’re always going to, I think, feel sorry for yourself or feel trapped and feel like there’s no way out. And there needs to be more people that are talking about it.

Going back to you talking about everything with the food and your diet and what you’ve been through. And your vision on kids, and how you feel about children. It’s like; it’s so important that you’re talking about these things because people need to hear that. That there are other people out there that are like them.

Juli Bauer: And do you; on your podcast, do you guys talk mostly to yourself or do you have multiple guests on. Because I think you have around 20-something, mid-twenties, a little over 25 episodes. Do you guys interview multiple people, or do you just like talking one on one more?

Lisa Bilyeu: Yeah, so we actually do a mix. It’s usually a 3 to 1; so three episodes we do just me and her and one episode we bring on someone that we admire or has an influence that we really think can be beneficial to our audience.

We’ve just actually wrapped season 1. We’re kind of doing them in seasons because we do have our parent companies that we always said needs to take priority. So for me, obviously it’s Impact Theory and for her it’s her Blogilates company and Pop Flex. So we’ve kind of structured it a little differently. So we’re just wrapping up our first season.

But that has been just incredibly empowering for myself. Because I don’t know if you’ve heard the phrase; I speak not to be understood, I speak to understand. So for me, I really grasp that. I actually love talking so I can understand how I feel about myself. So that I can actually put my thoughts in more of a construct. So I can understand what I’m trying to do. And for me, the podcast has been incredible for that. And we choose topics that we are struggling with. Or we choose topics that we have struggled with. And in our episodes, we explore our own emotions, and sometimes come to realizations that we didn’t realize before. So it’s kind of like mini therapy sessions, as well.

Juli Bauer: I love that. That is so cool. Have you had a favorite topic that you’ve talked about on the podcast?

Lisa Bilyeu: Oh, a favorite. It’s like picking your favorite child! I’ve got two puppies, I don’t know if I could pick one. {laughs}

Juli Bauer: No way. I only have one dog, I can’t imagine having a second one. Because you love them so much. You’re like; how could I love something just as much as I love this dog?

Lisa Bilyeu: I know. And not to derail us totally, but one of my puppies. We’ve had her for a year, and she escaped; she was missing for 30 hours.

Juli Bauer: Oh my god.

Lisa Bilyeu: Yeah. That was an insight to what it is like to be a parent. {laughs}

Juli Bauer: I would; I can’t imagine.

Lisa Bilyeu: Yeah, it’s emotional just thinking about it. But do I have a favorite episode? There was one episode fairly recently where, I can’t remember the name of the episode so I’m probably not helping much. But we had a realization in real time. So, it was an issue that Cassy had that she wasn’t sure why she had it. And then throughout the episode we came to realize towards the end that it had something to do with her father and things that happened when she was younger.

Juli Bauer: Interesting.

Lisa Bilyeu: So that was kind of interesting, because it was all real time that we were discovering this. Also, just things that I really do embody. So we had an actual episode that we called Food is Religion. And both coming from food backgrounds; you know, she does recipes. She talks about health. And just the negativity on comments that you get in social, where if you say I eat meat, you obviously get the vegan community coming after you. If you say you’re vegan, you get the meat community coming after you. If you say you’re gluten free; you know, there’s always something that no matter what you say people are willing to attack.

And I think; it’s my belief is people attack in order to defend their beliefs. It’s not actually to be mean or horrible to that person. It’s defense of their own situation. And so that episode really allowed me to be empathetic to all types of people and all types of situations that people are going through. Because, yeah, I wanted that from the audience when I told my story. And so that was really enlightening for me going; ok, here I am talking about what I believe in ketogenic food and grass-fed food that has really helped me.

I get that people want to pass on that. It’s like; oh my god, look, you don’t understand. It saved my life. And you want to pass it on with enthusiasm. The problem is, in passing it on with enthusiasm, it starts to feel like religion and starts to feel like you’re preaching. So that was a revelation for me. I don’t know if I would have had if I didn’t do the podcast episode.

Juli Bauer: Yeah. That’s awesome. That’s so cool. I’m excited to listen to some of your episodes. I’m always looking for new podcasts to listen to, especially women out there who are just spreading the word of health and just badassery all around.

Lisa Bilyeu: Thank you! And I’m going to say this on public podcast, that when we do season 2, I want to have you on.

Juli Bauer: Oh, I would love that! That would be so, so cool.

Lisa Bilyeu: Because I’ve literally been trying to hold back. I’ve got so many questions for you that I just; yeah. I could keep going on for hours and just ask you questions.

Juli Bauer: I know, totally! Well I am happy to come on any time. Just let me know.

Lisa Bilyeu: Alright. Your fans out there have heard that. It’s on record.

Juli Bauer: Yes! {laughs} So where can everybody find you and get any information about Quest, or Impact, or anything. Tell people where they can find you at.

Lisa Bilyeu: Yes. If you follow me at Lisa Bilyeu, I’m primarily on Instagram. And because I’ve kind of got my toes in multiple things, that’s usually the easiest place to send people. I talk about relationships. I talk about the relationship with my husband, with kids, with being an entrepreneur. With female empowerment. I really do just cover on Instagram all the things I’m very passionate about. And they’re kind of my little mini blogs, if you will. So yeah, that’s the best place to follow me.

Juli Bauer: Love it! Well thank you so much for being on. I seriously loved listening to your health story. It’s really given me some insight into my own life, so I really appreciate you sharing that with everybody. I can’t wait to come chat with you more someday.

Lisa Bilyeu: OH, this has been my absolutely pleasure, sweetie. We’ve got to have a little doggie date or something, get our puppies together. Although you don’t live in LA do you?

Juli Bauer: I don’t. And my dog is a bit of an asshole to other dogs.

Lisa Bilyeu: {laughing}

Juli Bauer: {laughs} So other dogs and children, he’s like; mm, I’m cool by myself.

Lisa Bilyeu: That’s awesome. I love how honest you were there. Well next time you’re in LA, me and you will hang out.

Juli Bauer: Ok, deal. Well thank you so much for being on. I really appreciate it. Hold on the line one second, I’m just going to sum this up. Guys, you know what to do. Rate, review, and subscribe. And you can always find any of my information at Have a good one, bye-bye!

Today on the podcast, I have the inspiring and amazing woman Lisa Bilyeu. Lisa is the co-found of Quest Nutrition, President of Impact Theory, and the co-host of the Sheroic Podcast! It’s safe to say that Lisa stays busy. And […] Today on the podcast, I have the inspiring and amazing woman Lisa Bilyeu. Lisa is the co-found of Quest Nutrition, President of Impact Theory, and the co-host of the Sheroic Podcast! It’s safe to say that Lisa stays busy. And […] PaleOMG Uncensored yes 1:20:30
Interview w/ Jessica of How Sweet Eats – Episode 62: PaleOMG Uncensored Podcast Sat, 09 Dec 2017 12:10:17 +0000 9 One of the first blogs I ever read was How Sweet Eats. I had no idea how wonderful a blog could be until I read hers. Jessica creates some of the most creative, stunning and decadent recipes you will ever […] One of the first blogs I ever read was How Sweet Eats. I had no idea how wonderful a blog could be until I read hers. Jessica creates some of the most creative, stunning and decadent recipes you will ever see. Her creativity is unlike any of the other blogs I read. So getting to chat with her and hear her story was pretty damn fun! Hope you enjoy listening to this bubbly, hardworking woman!


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Support the podcast by clicking the Subscribe button on iTunes and please a review only if you love the podcast! There is enough negativity in this world, don’t spread more. I love hearing about what YOU want me to talk about so feel free to leave on comment here or on social media with topics you’d like me to cover! And don’t forget, some posts have affiliate links which I may be compensated from. This compensation helps with keeping this blog and up and running! Thank you so much for your support, you guys are amazing!


Episode 62 Transcription!

This is Juli Bauer from PaleOMG and you are listening to PaleOMG Uncensored.

Juli Bauer: Welcome to another episode of PaleOMG Uncensored. Today I have a very special guest, who is one of the first bloggers I literally ever looked at online to actually figure out what the hell a blog was. Her name is Jessica Merchant; am I saying that right? Merchant?

Jessica Merchant: {laughs} You are.

Juli Bauer: OK. Of She is a blogger extraordinaire; seriously. You’ve had this blog for so long. I remember, I think a few of my recipes I made were based off some of the concoctions you made. Like, using blood orange on top of fish. Which, I didn’t even know what a blood orange was when I started cooking!

Jessica Merchant: Oh, that’s so awesome. I love that.

Juli Bauer: You introduced me to new food groups before I knew even how to shop at the grocery store. So your blog has seriously been around for so long. And I’ve been looking at it. And I still look at it to this day, whenever I need some inspiration for photography. Because you are one of my favorite food photographers out there.

Jessica Merchant: Thank you so much.

Juli Bauer: But we’re going to get into all of that. So welcome. Thank you so much for coming on the podcast!

Jessica Merchant: Thank you so much for having me! I’m so excited.

Juli Bauer: Me too! Ok, so for people who don’t know who you are, will you tell us just a little bit about yourself? What you did before you were a full-time blogger. Why you got into blogging. Really just kind of your journey into blogging and where you are now.

Jessica Merchant: Sure. So, I run the blog And I’ve been doing it; I believe I just had my 8-year blog-iversary. I mean; I sound like such a loser saying that. But it’s a thing, apparently. So 8 years. I’ve been doing it for 8 years.

I found myself stuck in a job that I just absolutely hated. I knew from the time that I was a young kind that going to an office was not something I ever wanted to do. Ever. I think even in my 8th grade year book I wrote, “I want to be a writer.” Or something. I knew that I never wanted to sit in this corporate office setting. But that’s kind of where I found myself. And it was like; I don’t know. I was basically a glorified secretary. The job that I had was not what was promised to me. What I was told about for months it was going to be. So I really didn’t have anything to do. And I was stuck behind a desk, like stuck on a computer. And truly just had nothing to do.

So I discovered; I think I discovered a handful of blogs. But they were like lifestyle blogs, and that’s what I wanted to start. I’m like; oh, I’m just going to do this. I’m not going to tell anyone, because it’s so embarrassing and horrible. But I’m just going to do it. But I didn’t have; like lifestyle blogs weren’t really a huge thing. And I didn’t really have a life. Like; I worked till 5 and my husband. I was newly married; barely a year. And my husband would work late. So it was like; I don’t even know what I could blog about.

So it kind of turned into; I would blog about the recipes I was making for dinner. Or, the things I was making on the weekend. Sometimes I would still do lifestyle stuff. But I do that now, as well. But it turned more into; it was manageable that I could do these recipes, I guess. Because I could work on it at work. Which, I mean, I totally wasn’t allowed to do. But I did anyway.

Juli Bauer: {laughs}

Jessica Merchant: {laughs} And I just prayed that nobody ever found out. Because I was like; oh my god, if they find out, they’re probably going to find work for me to do, then. You know? {laughing}

Juli Bauer: Yeah. Yeah.

Jessica Merchant: So I don’t even think that I told them about it. I don’t think I told them about it until I quit my job. Until I quit that job. So, yeah. I basically did it for almost a year without them knowing.

Juli Bauer: And then, what made you feel like; “Ok, it’s time for me to quit my job and go full on into blogging, and really do that full time.” What gave you the confidence to quit your full-time job?

Jessica Merchant: I really didn’t have a ton of confidence in quitting. There was a situation that happened the day that I quit that; I don’t know, kind of had put me in an unsafe situation. And was a really good opportunity for me to quit. But nobody in my life thought that I should quit. My husband is very much; you go to work, you work a job, this is just your life. My dad was very much like that. My mom was just like; “What are you doing with this thing on the internet?” {laughs} Nobody really knew.

But my husband would say every now and then; just quit. Just quit. Just do something else. And at the time; that day that I did end up quitting. Which was totally spur of the moment. I sent them an email, I said that I quit; I was making money from the blog. I was making okay money. Not as much as I was making at work. But I knew that if I had the time to work on it, that I probably could. Because I saw that other people were doing it. And that was 8 years ago.

Juli Bauer: And how were you figuring out; because I remember me starting a blog. I had no idea that you could monetize a blog. No idea that you could make money.

Jessica Merchant: Totally.

Juli Bauer: And it was just learning through others. Were you just making friends in the blog world, and finding out how they made money, that you were like; oh, ok. I should do the same thing. I should put advertising on my site. Or whatever else.

Jessica Merchant: Yes, absolutely. And it wasn’t even like people that I knew. I’m pretty sure shortly after I started my blog, the Pioneer Woman’s first book came out. And I’m like; oh. So this is a thing, and you just get a book deal. Oh, ok. {laughing} Like, it just happens for people.

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Jessica Merchant: Obviously I didn’t think it was going to happen for me. But it kind of opened my eyes within that first two or three months that; oh, holy crap! People are actually making money from this. So I knew it was possible. And there was the first ad network; I don’t know, it wasn’t the first. But I was with an ad network, Food Buzz. And they paid you a fixed rate. It was like, amazing. And people were actually making some decent money, because it wasn’t like a variable rate. I mean, that obviously went away.

But I was making money at it. So I knew that if I quit this job, I could get something part time. And I did get something part time. And I went and worked retail at the mall. Ok, totally didn’t want to do that.

Juli Bauer: {laughs}

Jessica Merchant: It was the mall, where I went to high school. So I would see people from high school, and they’d be like; “Oh, so this is what you’re doing?”

Juli Bauer: Oh no! {laughing}

Jessica Merchant: Yep, yep. This is what I’m doing. {laughs} Just keeping my mouth shut. But I knew that at least working retail would give me hours in the day when I could practice my photography in natural light, and would give me some more time. And I did work that part time job for maybe almost 6 months after I quit, until it basically became full time. I was working 30-40 hours a week for that anyway, and by that point my blog was making more money.

You know, I’m not a weirdo. I shouldn’t say weirdo, that’s really rude.

Juli Bauer: {laughing}

Jessica Merchant: But I’m not somebody that’s like, “Oh, I believe in the universe gives back to me.” But I sort of feel like that happened. It was definitely the right decision, because I was working really hard. And I was getting opportunities. Not obviously just handed to me. I was working nonstop for them. But it was all fitting together. And the blog was making money. So it was like the right choice, do you know what I mean?

Juli Bauer: Totally. And when you started your blog, how often were you posting versus nowadays, how often do you post?

Jessica Merchant: Oh my god! When I started, I would post 3 times a day.

Juli Bauer: Oh my gosh!

Jessica Merchant: Because that’s what people would do. Some people {laughs}.

Juli Bauer: Yeah. I know a couple of bloggers who still do that. That’s insane to me.

Jessica Merchant: Yeah. But sometimes I would post once a day. Sometimes I wouldn’t post at all. It just depended. It was so weird at the beginning. I didn’t have full direction, you know, of what I was doing. So now I post like 4 recipes a week, but one of them is a drink. I do a Thirsty Thursday thing. So I don’t even; I consider it kind of a cop-out recipe, even though I really like the drinks that I post. But it’s not like it’s like; oh my god, 12 hours of work. You know? {laughs}

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Jessica Merchant: But I like to share that. So I’ll post, let’s say 3 full recipes and a drink recipe. And I’ll do some lifestyle stuff. Like; you know, I do something called Tuesday Things. Or I post like my favorite links. Or I post something about my son. Or something like that. So that’s not very set in stone, aside from Tuesday Things.

Juli Bauer: And then let’s talk a little bit about your cookbooks. Because you’re coming out with your second cookbook in March, correct?

Jessica Merchant: I am, yes. {laughs}

Juli Bauer: Ok. So, you came out; how long ago was your last cookbook? Your first one?

Jessica Merchant: It was in September 2014.

Juli Bauer: Ok, cool. I was so excited to get your book. I loved some of the recipes in there. And I always interview; not always. But I have different; like paleo people on here. And everybody, just in case everybody wants to know, you are not strict paleo. You get to share all the fun stuff out there.

Jessica Merchant: {laughs} Right.

Juli Bauer: With all kinds of different ingredients. But you had this spicy jalapeno jam that you put on burgers.

Jessica Merchant: Yes! Yes, yes.

Juli Bauer: So I just made the burger, without the bun, and boom it was awesome. Oh my god, it was so good.

Jessica Merchant: Oh, I’m so glad you liked it!

Juli Bauer: It’s so good. So, what was the experience with your first cookbook? How did that opportunity come up? Did someone contact you? Did you write a proposal? What did that look like?

Jessica Merchant: I did write a proposal. But when I quit my job, back in that first year of blogging; I was like, I’m going to write a book. I want to get a book deal. I was super gung-ho. This is exactly what I’m going to do. This is what I want to do.

I was working with an agent at the time that I had reached out to. But first of all, my blog didn’t have; at the time it wasn’t like blogger books. I mean, unless you were the Pioneer Woman. Blogger books weren’t like; oh my gosh! A huge thing. They really wanted you to have a lot of followers. A really huge audience. And while my audience was growing, it wasn’t near what other people had that were getting these book deals.

With this agent; we were kind of on different. She kind of wanted me to write about, my experience with my first year of marriage, and recipes, and cooking. And I was on board with that at first. That’s what I was all about. But as I tried to get into that, I just didn’t really want to do it. And I was really, just enjoying blogging, and making a good income from it. And really loved posting on my blog, and being in control. Because I’m kind of a control freak.

I decided then that I don’t want a book. I’m not going to do a book. I don’t care about a book. I really don’t care about one; I just love what I’m doing so much right now. And I did that for a couple of years. So let’s say until 2012. And throughout the years, I would have a couple of agents or publishers reach out to me, as I think a lot of bloggers do every now and then. And I don’t know; one just kind of struck a chord with me, I think at one point in 2012. And I was like; ok, maybe I’ll try this again.

I was with a different agent, and we wrote a proposal, and went and sold the book. I got to meet with different publishers, and kind of get a feel for who I felt was a good fit. And it was a subject that was basically my blog in a book. Not titled How Sweet Eats, because people think all I ever do is dessert. {laughs} But it was basically the kind of recipes I post on my blog in the book.

Juli Bauer: And then, you are coming out with your second book.

Jessica Merchant: Yes.

Juli Bauer: When I was looking at it, I noticed that you were going with a different publisher the second time around. And after I did my first cookbook; I have no idea how long ago that was. But I did not like the first experience with my first publisher.

Jessica Merchant: Yes.

Juli Bauer: I didn’t like how the book came out. I didn’t like the quality. There were so many things I was so incredibly disappointed with. And so when I saw you went with the second publisher; was there control things that you wanted to be able to control with your second book? Why did you go with a different publisher?

Jessica Merchant: Yeah, that’s a little bit of the same reason. {laughs}

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Jessica Merchant: Also; I kind of had a different idea of what I wanted to do. And I knew that there were some certain people that I was really hoping that I’d get to work with. Just people in that publishing industry that I have become friends with over the years of having this blog, and doing books. I really wanted to do a book with them. You know?

And I think, that first experience, it was just so; oh my gosh, these publishers are here. Who do you go with? I don’t know. There was so much that I didn’t know, that I should have, I guess, knew before. But the second opportunity I knew what to ask. You know?

Juli Bauer: Yeah, exactly.

Jessica Merchant: Do I like how their books look? There are just so many things that I think don’t even cross your mind. And you work so closely with them. Because you pour your heart into writing this book. {laughs}

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Jessica Merchant: It’s like; oh my gosh! So, yeah.

Juli Bauer: And what is this second book going to have that’s different than your first book?

Jessica Merchant: So this book is actually still, it’s very similar to the type of recipes that I post on my blog. It’s no niche; no desserts. Obviously there are desserts. But it’s everything. But I’ve also added in a bunch of food-grade beauty DIYs. Because I’m obsessed with beauty products. I’m like a beauty product junkie. {laughs}

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Jessica Merchant: I just adore any kind of beauty, makeup, anything. And I wanted to do something that was food-grade ingredients. And also there’s a little bit with essential oils in there. But everything’s with coconut oil or homemade sugar scrubs and bath melts. Just neat things like beachy wave spray. Just like a second chapter in there. Because I think for like 5 or 6 years now, I talk every month about my beauty favorites and my lifestyle favorites and what I’m loving. So some of those things that you can make at home.

Juli Bauer: Yeah. That’s awesome. Did you; or are you. I’m guess you’re still in the process. Are you photographing the entire book yourself? Or are you working with someone?

Jessica Merchant: So I did. That is totally done now. I’m more so in the editing process. The first half of this year we photographed it. But yes. I mean, I did have assistants help me. But I also have another blogger that lives here in the Pittsburg area come and do food styling with me.

Juli Bauer: Fun.

Jessica Merchant: You know, it’s hard. Because I style all the stuff on the blog by myself, anyway. So I didn’t want it to be different. So I knew here, and I knew she’d be able to work within my style. But I didn’t do that the last time; and I don’t know how I did that first book. {laughing}

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Jessica Merchant: So, that was just a huge help. Having another set of eyes that can set things up differently. But still look at my style and keep it consistent.

Juli Bauer: Yours. Yeah. And how did you balance; if you’re posting 4 recipes a week, and making, whatever, 100 to 150 recipes for your book. How the f*ck do you balance that? That’s bananas to me.

Jessica Merchant: {laughing} I know. Yeah, it’s horrible. It isn’t horrible, and a blogger, Heather Cristo, who I adore.

Juli Bauer: Yes! Oh my gosh! I just had a phone call with her last week.

Jessica Merchant: I love Heather!

Juli Bauer: Love her. So nice.

Jessica Merchant: So we did our first books kind of around the same time. And at the time, she already had two children when she did her first book. Which I think came out maybe 2013 or 2012, somewhere around there. And I think I asked her in person. We were at an event. I was like, “How did you manage to post on your blog?” Because I think at the time she was still posting 6 or 7 recipes a week or something on her blog, and doing the book, and had kids. {laughs} And I’m like; how did you do this?

So she told me then. She’s like; you just have to focus one day of recipes on your blog, and then the rest of the time on your book. And I was like; you’re absolutely right. That’s what I should do! And truly that is what I’ve done since then. For the blog, and the book. But basically for my blog life. Like, I obviously love to cook. But I don’t want to be cooking in my kitchen 6 or 7 days a week. Do you know what I mean?

Juli Bauer: Mm-hmm.

Jessica Merchant: I mean, it’s kind of like labor! I don’t want to do that. I did exactly what she said. I would take one day a week with that first book, and really focus on all of my recipes. That doesn’t mean that I was testing a recipe. When I’m testing a recipe for the blog, I might make it for dinner or something. If I’m not worried about photographing it, who cares when the hell I make it? I just need to make sure it tastes good. But I would do all of the recipe development and photography in one day. And I have done that ever since.

Juli Bauer: Wow.

Jessica Merchant: So that’s what I did with both.

Juli Bauer: Ok. So let’s talk about how you come up with some of these recipes. Because you; do you have any guestimate of how many recipes you have on your website?

Jessica Merchant: No. Oh my gosh, I probably have over 1000 I think.

Juli Bauer: Easily. I feel like easily. Where do you get your inspiration from? And I feel like people probably ask you that all the time.

Jessica Merchant: They do. {laughs}

Juli Bauer: Yeah! And I get that same question. I feel like you just continue to come up with different things. But where do you get most of your; because I just look at some of your recipes, and I’m like; f*ck why didn’t I think of that? That is so genius. You come up with so many cool things.

Jessica Merchant: I feel that way about so many people, too. But thank you. {laughs} I get it everywhere. I don’t really know. I think first of all, I just have; and I’ve said this for years. I think, first of all, I have a pretty relatable palate. I know sometimes I might make some really weird sh*t on my blog and people are like; oh that’s weird. But it’s rare. I don’t make too much weird sh*t. I think that a lot of times, it’s pretty relatable.

I don’t know. I have this relatable palate, and I know what flavors I like to go together. So that’s a big part of it for me. And then, it’s just a matter of if I see something. I don’t know; I can be driving down the road and see something on a billboard. Or be out at a restaurant. I don’t even know! {laughs}

Juli Bauer: Yeah. How far out do you plan your recipes? Because I know if I see something like on a billboard, and you’re like; oh, sh*t! I will write it down on my phone right away. And then I’ll try to plan out a month or two ahead of time. But if you’re creating so many of these recipes so often, how far out do you plan?

Jessica Merchant: Well. {laughs} Before I had a child, I was probably a good two weeks ahead. But I’m somebody that; I’m very instantaneous, spontaneous, all or nothing. I might make something today and in two weeks be like; what the hell. That’s disgusting. I don’t know what I was thinking. Do you know what I mean? So it’s hard for me to plan super far ahead. Because I’m so instant gratification. I’m part of this horrific, yet wonderful, internet generation. I want it now.

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Jessica Merchant: So after I had a child, I really only been maybe one to two weeks ahead. I’m usually at least a good one to two weeks ahead. But, since I’m now pregnant and going to give birth, like, any day. {laughs}

Juli Bauer: Are you really? I was going to ask how far along you were.

Jessica Merchant: Yeah, I’m almost 38 weeks. So, I’m like petrified that at any minute I’m going to give birth. {laughs} I have been planning so I can take time off for the baby. So through the holidays. Which is technically; it’s horrible. Because I don’t know what I want to eat tomorrow.

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Jessica Merchant: So that’s a struggle that I’ve always had with the cookbooks. Like I don’t know; oh my god, are people still going to be obsessed with cauliflower sh*t in 2 years when this book comes out?

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Jessica Merchant: I don’t know. Because the turnover on the blog is so high. Not that I’m not posting the recipes that I love. I mean, I do love the recipes that I post. But I’m obsessed with this recipe today; and oh my god, next Tuesday I’m going to be obsessed with this next recipe. {laughing}

Juli Bauer: Yeah. So talk about having your first child, and running your own business. Because I know my girlfriend who is pregnant right now; she’s planning all these recipes ahead of time so she can kind of take a 3-month type hiatus. Just taking a backseat and letting everything fall into place. So how was it planning for your first child; with a complete unknown. And then having a child while working from home; I can’t wrap my head around that when you do so many things as a blogger in a day. Then you add a human that you’re supposed to keep alive.

Jessica Merchant: Yeah. {laughs}

Juli Bauer: And not stick his fingers into sockets and crawl around and put things in his mouth. How did you balance all that, and crush it as a mom?

Jessica Merchant: Yeah, I don’t. I don’t balance it. It’s just like a big old mess all the time.

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Jessica Merchant: I don’t know. I kind of did this when I had my son. I made enough recipes that I could just sit on my butt for like a month or two. I mean, obviously not sit on my butt. But be with him. And I’m still active in the blog world. But I don’t have to get up and cook and photograph and clean up.

Juli Bauer: Yeah. The clean up is the worst part. It’s the worst.

Jessica Merchant: It is the worst part. Oh my god, it’s horrible.

Juli Bauer: Terrible.

Jessica Merchant: It’s just awful. So I knew that I wanted to do that with this child coming, so that’s what I’m doing. But I didn’t know what I was in for. I’m lucky that my kid was pretty good and easygoing and just a happy baby. I mean, obviously when he was 3, 4, 5 months old and I got back into the kitchen, I wasn’t able to take these 10 to 12-hour cooking days. Things were more sporadic. And I don’t know; I was just kind of trying to go with the flow. Somehow I was relaxed. I’m usually not a relaxed person. I’m like a psychopath.

Juli Bauer: {laughs}

Jessica Merchant: I don’t know how I was able to relax. But I think that I didn’t know what having a kid was going to be like. I didn’t grow up; I didn’t love babysitting other people’s kids. {laughs} I’m not like; “Oh my gosh, I want to be a teacher!” No. I didn’t ever want to do anything with kids. I knew I wanted my own kids. So when I had him, I was just floored over how obsessed with him I was. I knew I’d love my child, but I had no idea that I was like; oh my god, this is the best thing ever.

So I’ve had a very good experience with him. And I think that’s relaxed me enough that I could just kind of go with the flow. Work when I can when I need to. Because I know that even though some of these days are insane, they are not going to last forever. And it sounds so cliché, and it is so cliché. But they go so fast. It’s already gone so fast. So that might mean normally; and I know that I’m going to have to do this again. I love to front load my week. I’ll do as much work as I can Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday. And then I want to try to do nothing, again, like cooking, or photographing or anything Thursday, Friday, Saturday, Sunday. But with all this prepping and going to have a new baby, I know that I have to be flexible, so just kind of keeping that in my head. I don’t know; that’s really all. {laughs}

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Jessica Merchant: Also I have laundry baskets of clothes that don’t get folded for like 3 weeks.

Juli Bauer: Heck no.

Jessica Merchant: Because you just have to prioritize, and I do have a lot of people. Like other bloggers ask me; oh my god, how do you get this done? Well, I have 6 laundry baskets of clothes that need to be folded that have been cleaned.

Juli Bauer: {laughs} Yeah. I just don’t do the other stuff.

Jessica Merchant: {laughs} Exactly. Like, my child comes first, our family comes first, and the blog and my business is a very close second. And once that’s done, everything else can come after that.

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Juli Bauer: How has this pregnancy been compared to your first one? Has it been easier? Has it been harder? Do you just know what’s coming, so that makes it easier?

Jessica Merchant: I think so. I was a lot sicker in the beginning. But it’s pretty much been the same. I also; people are like; how do you work like this? How are you doing all these recipes while you’re pregnant? I mean, I don’t have a choice. You know what I mean? I run my own business. So if this was a brick and mortar business; do you know? Nobody else can really do your job when it’s such a personal thing. I could have assistants do certain things for me. But my blog is so personal based. With my writing; I’m not going to have somebody else write my posts and take my photos and stuff like that.

Juli Bauer: Yeah. Do you have an assistant right now? Just for your blog?

Jessica Merchant: I have all throughout the last almost 2 years. But right now, I don’t have anyone working with me here in my house. Because I really don’t want to work for the next three months. {laughs} And the girl that was working with me, she ended up moving to Philly. So it kind of, the timing kind of worked out. I mean, it’s like hard as hell and I’m dying some days. {laughs} But it’s going to be worth it, because I don’t want to have to worry about somebody else, you know. When I’m not going to do any work, manual labor stuff for a few months. Or a few weeks. We’ll see. {laughs}

Juli Bauer: So when you do your photography, do you do all the photography by yourself? When you’re doing hand shots in anything, is it sometimes if maybe your husband is home or if you just do that. Let’s just talk about your photography, because that’s like one of my favorite things about you.

So the other day, I had one of my friends, Sarah from Broma Bakery.

Jessica Merchant: Oh my gosh, I love her!

Juli Bauer: She’s so freaking adorable.

Jessica Merchant: She’s awesome!

Juli Bauer: And she has this stunning food photography.

Jessica Merchant: Yes. Her photography is amazing.

Juli Bauer: It’s beautiful.

Jessica Merchant: I actually have her like rephotographing some of my older recipes.

Juli Bauer: Are you serious!

Jessica Merchant: Yes. Because she’s so amazing. I don’t really want to have to take the time to photograph my old things, and her stuff is so stunning that I’m like; ohh!

Juli Bauer: It’s so pretty.

Jessica Merchant: Gorgeous, yeah.

Juli Bauer: She has this very simple, moody, type photography. And yours, I feel like, is opposite in a lot of ways because it is very busy, it’s very bright, it’s very colorful. Everything pops out of the page. And I love that kind of photography. I love Sarah’s photography, and I love your style of photography. And I always go to your website to look at; ok, how did she style this drink. Or how did she style this really ugly dish that you have to somehow elevate.

Jessica Merchant: I know! Oh my god, so hard.

Juli Bauer: Like a casserole, or whatever. A vegetable dish, like Brussel sprouts. How do you make Brussel sprouts sexy?

Jessica Merchant: {laughing}

Juli Bauer: I was looking back at your website, going super back in time when you first started and just started getting into it. And I feel like 2011-2012 is where you kind of started to get your rhythm and get better at photography and understanding how things should look. So what helped you improve with your photography the most? Was it getting a new camera? Was it figuring out lighting? What made you elevate your photography?

Jessica Merchant: Such a good question. First of all, I absolutely hate photography. It is my least favorite part of the process. But I know that it has to be done, obviously, because people are visual; eat with their eyes.

I’d say what helped me the most. I didn’t take any classes. When I did get my first DSLR, big, mo-fo camera, it definitely improved because the quality improved. Even though I didn’t really do anything. It was just a matter, I feel like, kind of looking at some photos that I loved. For instance, if it was Broma Bakery, I would look at her and try to style it similarly. Not copy it, but try to be like; how can I style it like her.

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Jessica Merchant: And I feel like that helped me early on. But what also would trip me up, then, is you’re exactly right on that time frame; 2012, 2013. I hate the photography in my first book, because I feel like it’s all over the place. And the reason being is I didn’t know how to appreciate other people’s photography without trying to make it my own. If that makes sense. I do feel like I have more of my own style now. But I can still appreciate someone else’s photography without being like; oh my god, my photography has to look like that.

So that definitely, that mindset and just doing it over and over really helped me. Probably just doing it almost every single day, or four to five days a week and just really training myself has helped me. And reading crap online about it. But I do shoot in all natural light. And I will say, it’s gotten so much more intense. I was blogging before even Pinterest or Facebook fan pages existed. Definitely before Instagram existed. And since Instagram and Pinterest, you’re so overwhelmed with these gorgeous styled photos. I feel like the styling in everything; the game has been upped, so it can be tricky.

The hand shots, the pouring shots; it totally depends. Sometimes it’s me. It’s very rarely my husband, because he’s; one, never home, and two, if we work together in any sort of capacity we want to murder each other and file for divorce.

Juli Bauer: {laughing}

Jessica Merchant: {laughs} So we do not. I feel like I’m one of the very few bloggers that her husband doesn’t work with her.

Juli Bauer: Mine doesn’t work for me.

Jessica Merchant: Oh, we’d kill each other.

Juli Bauer: I kind of; I keep trying to talk him into it just so we can actually hang out more on a regular basis.

Jessica Merchant: Yeah! {laughing}

Juli Bauer: But I worry about that. Where it would be like; no, that’s not how I’m doing this. This is my business! {laughs}

Jessica Merchant: Right. I feel like we have that discussion once every six months, and we’re like; should we do that? But we’re just so different.

Juli Bauer: What does he do for a living?

Jessica Merchant: He’s in finance and accounting. Like, my worst nightmare.

Juli Bauer: Yeah. Terrible.

Jessica Merchant: Like; I can’t add 2 + 2. He’s very logical and smart in that way; and I’m like, oh let me think with my heart. Don’t even think with my brain, ever. {laughs} So we even each other out.

Juli Bauer: Totally.

Jessica Merchant: But yeah, those shots just depend. Sometimes if I had an assistant here, lately I have been having the girl that helped me with the cookbook, she’s been helping me because I’ve been doing so much; I’ve been trying to batch make so much content ahead of time for when the baby comes. So she has been helping me on those days. And sometimes she’ll do it and help me. But it just depends. {laughs} It depends on the day.

Juli Bauer: Yeah. How do you decide how you’re going to photograph your recipes? Because maybe you’ll have something super simple. I’m just looking at your website as I chat with you. And you’ll have your popsicles just stacked on top of each other, and nothing else in the shot. But then you’ll have something else where it has all sorts of crumbs there, and herbs, and some spices, and some texture. How do you decide? Is it just what you’re feeling that day? If you’re like; f*ck it. I don’t want to style this at all!

Jessica Merchant: Yeah. {laughs} Yes!

Juli Bauer: Or do you have a vision every time you make something?

Jessica Merchant: No!

Juli Bauer: Or is it just as you go?

Jessica Merchant: I never have a vision. {laughs} I never. I never, ever, ever have a vision. Because the whole photography and styling process is so hard for me. And a lot of people get annoyed when I say that. And they’re like; oh, but I like your photos. And I’m not saying that I don’t like my photos, or they’re not good. But it’s just so hard and time consuming for me.

So I basically am just like; what colors have a photographed on my blog lately? Ok, let’s go with something else then. {laughs}

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Jessica Merchant: That is how I decide. Or like, I know that oranges, like squash and pumpkin, look pretty good on blues. So I am photographing a lot of sh*t on blue right now! {laughs} Because it’s fall.

Juli Bauer: I love your blues. I stole that blue from you, because I messaged you.

Jessica Merchant: Oh, that’s right! I forgot! {laughing}

Juli Bauer: I was like, where did you get that blue background? I need it so bad. It’s the best. It’s just so beautiful. It’s so stunning.

Jessica Merchant: I totally forgot.

Juli Bauer: Oh my gosh, I seriously love your pictures. I just keep going through more and more.

Jessica Merchant: Thank you so much. Thank you.

Juli Bauer: And does your son, when you’re photographing these recipes, is he hanging out with you or he is school at this point? How does it work when he is at home with you and you’re cooking and doing all this stuff? Does he like to help?

Jessica Merchant: He is in this phase of wanting to help with everything. Which is awesome and wonderful, until it’s frustrating and so annoying. Because you don’t want to tell him; no you can’t help me unload the dishwasher. Because I know in a year I’m going to want him to unload the dishwasher. {laughs}

Juli Bauer: Oh yeah, for sure.

Jessica Merchant: I do have a babysitter for him. He’s not in school yet. But she comes like two days a week. And she’s amazing and wonderful. And she’s here for maybe 8 hours, and I just try to bust out as much as I can. Sometimes I have to do stuff with him here, but I obviously can’t work 8 to 10 hours with him here, because he would just lose his mind. But I can sometimes do two recipes with him here. But it takes a lot longer because we’re doing activities. I’m setting him up with playdoh.

I basically let him trash the entire house. His toys are everywhere. I just have to let him do whatever he wants {laughs} within reason, obviously. And just get that hour or two of work done that need to get done. So.

Juli Bauer: Ugh, man. I don’t understand how women do it, when I’m barely doing it with just taking care of my dog. Like, a dog.

Jessica Merchant: {laughs} I know. I wonder how I did it before. I’m like; what did I do?

Juli Bauer: Yeah, doing this podcast. I’m like; here’s a bone. Here’s a bone. With a baby, you can’t just give them a bone! That’s just not how it works.

Jessica Merchant: {laughing} Right.

Juli Bauer: So, let’s talk about some of your recipes on your website. Because you have obviously; probably thousands. It’s not even 1000; it’s probably thousands. And then you’re coming out with your second book so even more recipes in there. So do you have any of your top three sweet recipes that you’ll go back to, or you’ll want to actually make again. Or if anybody comes to your site for the first time that you think they should go directly towards. Let’s just start with sweet.

Jessica Merchant: Oh geeze. Oh my gosh; sweets. One of the really popular recipes on my blog that is very good that I have not made more than 5 times, because it’s kind of labor intensive. But a reader sent it to me like 5 or 6 years ago; the homemade Snickers bars. They’re amazing. They taste exactly like Snickers bars!

Juli Bauer: I was looking at that! Yes. And the photo is beautiful.

Jessica Merchant: That’s a really popular recipe. Yeah.

Juli Bauer: Mm-hmm.

Jessica Merchant: But truly, it seems like more because I think people go so crazy over dessert on Instagram or on Pinterest. But I really only post one dessert every two weeks. Or maybe once a week. If we’re closer to the holidays.

Juli Bauer: Yes, of course.

Jessica Merchant: Maybe it’s once a week. I do like to eat dessert, but I don’t like to make dessert. I hate to follow directions, instructions. I’m not a baker by heart. I’m so much more of a cook. I don’t want to be told how to do things. The minute somebody tells me what to do; I’m like, oh sh*t. I’m doing the exact opposite. {laughs}

Juli Bauer: That’s exactly why I started a blog.

Jessica Merchant: Yes!

Juli Bauer: Because I didn’t want to follow other people’s directions.

Jessica Merchant: Right. Exactly. It’s so hard. So I don’t know, when it comes to sweets. I make a lot of the same cookies every year at Christmas. I like to bake a Christmastime just so we have stuff to take people. Like take hostess gifts. But there’s not really a full-on dessert that make all the time, from my blog if that makes sense.

Juli Bauer: Yeah. Do you have any top three of your savory dish? Because you have a sh*t ton of those. Do you like sandwiches more? Do you like burgers? Do you go with vegetable dishes? What are your top three savory?

Jessica Merchant: I do make a lot of my recipes over and over again. But I’m very much a seasonal cook. So it totally depends on what is in season. We eat very seasonally. I will say a recipe that I posted fairly recently, like a few weeks ago, it’s like a skillet smothered chicken. You take the backbone out of a chicken, and cook it in a cast-iron skillet. And I’ve been making it like all of 2017, but I just posted it. It is so good. I mean, it was such a horrific, ugly, horrible recipe to photograph. But it is so, so good.

And a lot of people have already made it, and are dying over it. So that’s definitely, even though it’s fairly new. But one of the first recipes that I ever posted; that I actually just has Sarah, from Broma Bakery, rephotograph for me. Because the photos were like thumbnails, and yellow, and blurry, and horrific, was lobster mac and cheese.

Juli Bauer: Oh!

Jessica Merchant: Which is super indulgent and amazing.

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Jessica Merchant: I usually make that around Christmas time. And then I make a lot of my salads often. Because we usually have salads here twice a week. It’s just an easy; I don’t know, it’s so easy to throw together for us. My husband doesn’t get home until late, and it’s something. After I’ve been cooking all day, I don’t want to be cooking at like 8 p.m.

Juli Bauer: Mm-hmm.

Jessica Merchant: So it’s stuff that I can prepare ahead of time. So I love making a lot of the kale salads on my blog. I have a taco kale salad that I make a lot.

Juli Bauer: Yum.

Jessica Merchant: Yeah. I have a kale Caesar salad that I make all the time. So a lot of them I do make often.

Juli Bauer: That’s awesome. That says something. If you’re remaking your food, that’s proof that it’s actually work making to others.

Jessica Merchant: I actually like it. I’m not just bullsh*tting everyone. {laughs} I like this food.

Juli Bauer: Something I love that you do, and I’m guessing you do this every year towards the end of the year, is you share your recipe fails. You do a full post with all these pictures of all your recipe fails. And it’s like, amazing to me that you even photograph these things in any sort of capacity. If you know it failed. Whenever something fails, I

Jessica Merchant: Sometimes I almost forget. I’m like; sh*t I need to take a picture of this for December! {laughs}

Juli Bauer: Yes! So how often do you fail with recipes? Because I feel like as you get better at cooking, you fail a little bit less because you know what things are going to work. Baking obviously is a little bit different. But how often do you feel like you are failing at a recipe? Is it every week that you fail at one or is it every few weeks?

Jessica Merchant: It’s definitely not every week. I feel like it depends on the year. Last year I was doing a ton of testing for my cookbook. This year at the beginning of the year, even though we were photographing the tested recipes, some of them I must have either not written down correctly or hadn’t; maybe I hadn’t tested some yet. So I had a lot more fails at the beginning of the year.

And I have a ton of fails when it comes to baking. Because I think that I can make something from scratch, and it’s a complete disaster.

Juli Bauer: Yeah, baking is so freaking hard! Sarah was on the podcast talking about how baking isn’t hard, and how savory recipes are. I’m like; girl. It’s so hard! It’s such a science.

Jessica Merchant: It is. I do know some basic now that I’ve been doing it for this long. And I have my go-to maybe cookie recipe that if I want to make something at Christmas I’ll just throw different ingredients into it. Who cares, it’s the same dough recipe. Or you know, a basic cupcake recipe. But I’m constantly blown away by the stuff that she makes.

And I don’t have the patience to decorate cakes and do sh*t like that, either.

Juli Bauer: I know.

Jessica Merchant: I cannot do that. {laughs}

Juli Bauer: I’m looking at one of your recipe fails. It’s just so fun; it sounds terrible. But it’s so fun to see people who you’re like; how do they make the best stuff every? But they do fail too. I think people probably love these posts. Because they’re like; ok. This makes me believe that I can actually cook if she goes through fails on a regular basis, too. I’m so surprised that you still photograph them.

Jessica Merchant: Oh, I do.

Juli Bauer: So as social media has begun to change, and you’ve been through all stages of social media since you were blogging before social media even came around. Obviously one of the big stages that we’re in right now is video. And you’ve been doing more video. I saw you have some of those videos from top looking down, and then you just started working with the Inspo to do those type of videos.

So how has it been doing these videos and the experience been? Are you liking doing videos? Or do you hate doing them? Because it’s just one of those things, that’s how our social media is changing so we kind of have to just stay up with the times and get our sh*t together and do these videos.

Jessica Merchant: Exactly.

Juli Bauer: So how has that experience been, doing the videos yourself versus doing it with someone else? Or have you done it with someone else the entire time?

Jessica Merchant: Well, I do think it’s a necessary evil. I hate video. I actually like being in video. I don’t really like being in video right now, because all the Inspo videos I’ve shot I started at like 37 weeks pregnant. {laughs}

Juli Bauer: Yeah!

Jessica Merchant: So I have like 16 ready to go. So I know in January, I’m going to want to die; when I’m like, oh my god, I can’t believe I’m still posting this and I’m like 37 weeks pregnant.

Juli Bauer: And you’re not pregnant anymore! {laughing}

Jessica Merchant: Yeah. So I don’t necessarily love doing them right now. {laughs} Having nothing to wear, and just being like; oh my god, I’m so huge. But I do really like being in the videos. I like that a lot more than the overhead. The overhead stuff I’ve mostly shot on my own. I absolutely hate it. It’s horrible time consuming. It’s not where I want to spend my time. But one, I’m a control freak, and two I can’t really find anyone that can consistently give me video. You know, so that kind of has sucked. That process.

Like, I say consistently for a reasonable price {laughs}. You know? So I don’t want to do those kinds of videos myself. I don’t know what I’m going to do going forward. I’m definitely not planning on doing any of those in the holiday season with the baby. But I love shooting the videos that are on; when I’m on camera. I like that I’m not afraid of doing that. Because I don’t know; I like talking about it more than just cooking it with my hands on the screen. {laughs} It’s more interesting to me. And I think that the response has been pretty good to those. Because I’ve posted one or two other branded videos that was just the food; just the recipe, and people are like; oh, where did you go? I like those recipes better with you in them! {laughs}

Juli Bauer: Oh, yeah.

Jessica Merchant: It just depends. It depends also on how you’ve carried out your blog, and your brand. If somebody is not super personal, then I think the food videos are fine. Like the just hands, and just the food. But I think; I’ve been pretty personal on my blog, and write in a more casual tone. So I like those. But videos; it’s just so time consuming.

Juli Bauer: Yeah!

Jessica Merchant: And it’s so difficult.

Juli Bauer: It’s so time consuming. I have my first videos coming up with Inspo soon. And just the planning of getting all your ingredients ready, and filming 6 videos in a day.

Jessica Merchant: It’s insane, right? I’m so excited though that you’re doing them.

Juli Bauer: I’m so excited to try them. But so scared. I’m making a spreadsheet leading up to it so I can make sure I have all the ingredients. And it is so time consuming. And doing all your recipes, plus the videos on top of it is pretty damn hard.

Jessica Merchant: Yeah. And I think what sucks about video in general, with social media, is it’s just added on to everything else that we have to do. It’s not like we’ve got to take something away.

Juli Bauer: Yeah, yeah.

Jessica Merchant: It’s like; oh, do these videos three days a week on top of everything else that you do. {laughs} Like, ugh! How do I have the time.

Juli Bauer: And with social media changing. And obviously, different algorithms just like Facebook pulled anything visible to any of our readers away from them.

Jessica Merchant: Yes, it’s horrible.

Juli Bauer: And Instagram is doing the same thing. What do you concentrate on? Do you just concentrate on your blog? Do you look at traffic? Do you worry about any of those numbers? Because I think it’s hard to not worry about it sometimes. Sometimes you’re like; whatever, I don’t f*cking care. I work hard, that’s fine. But do you run into those feelings of frustration with social media. Or if you’re looking at Google analytics and your numbers changing; is that something that’s heavy on your mind very much?

Jessica Merchant: You know what, it’s not anymore. It’s not something; obviously some days I’m still like; oh my god. My Instagram is just tanked. Nobody sees it. Nobody cares. I don’t know what to post. People tell me they want to see more lifestyle stuff. People say they want to see my kid, then I post a picture of him and nobody likes it and 30,000 people unfollow me! {laughing} Like, you know, it’s just you don’t know what to do.

I do really focus on my blog. I own it, it’s what I can control. I like owning all that content. It’s probably because I’m a control freak. But I will always be an entrepreneur. So if I’m not doing this, if I get burned out on this, if I don’t’ want to do this anymore; I will find something else that I want to do. So I like having and owning. I can’t control what Facebook does or what Instagram does. So I do like to put my focus there.

And I think also, since having a kid. Again, this is so cliché. Oh my god, I can’t believe I’m saying it.

Juli Bauer: {laughing}

Jessica Merchant: But I know; he has kind of changed my mindset in what really matters.

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Jessica Merchant: You know what I mean? This is an awesome time with him. And oh my god, if my Instagram isn’t growing, it’s like; am I going to give a sh*t in 30 years. {laughs} Do you know what I mean? I know that I can’t; sometimes I do worry about it, like a psycho. But other times.

Juli Bauer: Yeah. It’s hard not to when it’s your business.

Jessica Merchant: Right. But I’m like; he’s what matters and I want to make sure I’m in the right headspace for that. {laughing} Yeah, I don’t know.

Juli Bauer: It’s a constant battle with social media of what matters and what doesn’t. It’s a hard kind of balance to find. Is there anybody you like on social media to follow the most? Or you get inspiration from? Or you just tell other people about because you love following them?

Jessica Merchant: I feel like somebody I do always tell people about is Sarah from Broma Bakery.

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Jessica Merchant: The other person would be Erin from the Almond Eater, who is the one that helps me with food styling here.

Juli Bauer: Oh cool, I’ll have to look at her.

Jessica Merchant: Her photography and her style is just awesome. And, it’s kind of similar to somebody else that I love; the Kitchen McCabe. I think that’s how you pronounce it. I’m not sure. It might be the Kitchen McCabe. Her styling is just incredible, and insane. It’s nothing I could ever do and I want to do it all. It is so beautiful. It is just so incredible. And she has 5 kids or something, so I’m amazed at how she does it. It’s amazing.

Juli Bauer: How do people have this many kids and get anything done?!

Jessica Merchant: I know!! I’m like, I don’t know what my life is going to be like in another month.

Juli Bauer: Seriously! My poor girlfriend. We were at breakfast, or lunch today. And she has a 3-week-old, 4-week-old maybe. Super new. And then she’s going through those stages of; oh wait, is he hungry? Ok, I put my little thing over so I can breastfeed in public and he isn’t hungry. And she’s putting her head inside this little wrap you know around. The baby is starting to cry.

Jessica Merchant: At least she’s out of the house.

Juli Bauer: I know. She was like; well maybe I should just go home. I don’t want other people to get upset. And it’s like; how do people get anything done when it’s so new? Maybe when you have a couple they start to take care of themselves together.

Jessica Merchant: Right! That’s what I’m hoping. {laughing}

Juli Bauer: Seriously. You’re like, take this one, please. {laughing}

Jessica Merchant: I know. I was one of three, and I’m like; how the hell did my mom do this? And I’m like; oh my god, phones didn’t exist. I had to go to the doctor today, and I had to take my son. When we got in the exam room, I just gave him my phone, so he didn’t bug us or jump up on the table. And I’m like; how did my mom do this?

Juli Bauer: I know.

Jessica Merchant: How did she did this with three of us? I just don’t even know.

Juli Bauer: I know. My friend always tries to not go the iPad route, but it’s like, sometimes it’s the only thing I can do to just stay sane.

Jessica Merchant: Yeah. It’s like.

Juli Bauer: You’ve got to do what you’ve got to do!

Jessica Merchant: it is. It’s desperate measures, though, because they turn into zombies with the screen and it’s horrible. Like, it’s scary.

Juli Bauer: I know, they’re total zombies. It’s crazy.

Jessica Merchant: {laughs} Yeah.

Juli Bauer: So, ok can people preorder your cookbook yet?

Jessica Merchant: Yes! They can. It’s The Pretty Dish, and it’s on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, I think it’s on Indie Bound, Books A Million. Yes, it will be out March 20, I believe.

Juli Bauer: Awesome. I cannot wait to see it.

Jessica Merchant: Thank you so much. {laughs}

Juli Bauer: Where else can people find you. Where on your social media, your website? Just give them all the details so they can find you before they leave here.

Jessica Merchant: Yes. My site is My Instagram, my Pinterest are both How Sweet Eats. My Facebook is How Sweet Eats. My Twitter, which I don’t even go on anymore, which is so sad, is How Sweet Blog, because I made a bad business decision in 2009 and never changed it.

Juli Bauer: {laughing}

Jessica Merchant: {laughs} It was just like; oh, whatever.

Juli Bauer: Whatever, it’s fine. And Twitter; does anybody use Twitter anymore?

Jessica Merchant: I know! I don’t know.

Juli Bauer: My husband looks for news on Twitter. He’s like; that’s what he uses Twitter for.

Jessica Merchant: Yeah. I mean, the president uses it, {laughing} but that’s about it!

Juli Bauer: Uggh, man. We won’t go into that.

Jessica Merchant: I know. I mean, I don’t really know, I feel bad. Sometimes I go 4 days without opening it, and I’m like; oh crap! I didn’t Tweet!

Juli Bauer: Seriously. I just connect everything from Instagram. Does that count?

Jessica Merchant: That’s what I do too because I just can’t keep up with everything.

Juli Bauer: Well I just looked at this The Almond Eater that you were talking about, and her stuff is beautiful!

Jessica Merchant: Isn’t it? I love her.

Juli Bauer: It’s awesome. Thank you for the recommendation. I love finding new food photography inspiration.

Jessica Merchant: Oh, and she does some paleo stuff every now and then.

Juli Bauer: Oh cool! Ok, sweet.

Jessica Merchant: Yeah. It’s cool.

Juli Bauer: Awesome. Well thank you so much, Jessica for being on. You’re amazing. Thank you for inspiring me from day one on my blog.

Jessica Merchant: Oh, thank you!

Juli Bauer: And I will keep trying to get; I actually just signed up for a photography class so I can take my camera off of automatic.

Jessica Merchant: {Laughing}

Juli Bauer: I started my class today.

Jessica Merchant: That’s awesome!

Juli Bauer: {laughs} So I will someday get there.

Jessica Merchant: Good for you.

Juli Bauer: Someday. But thank you so much for coming on. And it’s like, what, 9 p.m. your time. So I truly appreciate it. And you guys, go check out Jessica. She will give you so much inspiration in the kitchen, and now with DIY body stuff. And, amazing cocktails. I mean, you’re really good at cocktails.

Jessica Merchant: Thank you! {laughs}

Juli Bauer: So stay on the line. You guys, don’t forget to rate, review, and subscribe. And I will see you next time. Bye-bye!

One of the first blogs I ever read was How Sweet Eats. I had no idea how wonderful a blog could be until I read hers. Jessica creates some of the most creative, stunning and decadent recipes you will ever […] One of the first blogs I ever read was How Sweet Eats. I had no idea how wonderful a blog could be until I read hers. Jessica creates some of the most creative, stunning and decadent recipes you will ever […] PaleOMG Uncensored yes 57:43
Listener Questions – Episode 61: PaleOMG Uncensored Podcast Sat, 02 Dec 2017 06:01:54 +0000 15 Answering your questions in this weeks episode! ____________ Big Thank You This Weeks Sponsor – ButcherBox ButcherBox sources and delivers the best quality grass-fed, grass-finished, antibiotic and hormone-free, pasture-raised beef, chicken and pork straight to your doorstep. And getting your […] Answering your questions in this weeks episode!


Big Thank You This Weeks Sponsor – ButcherBox

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Support the podcast by clicking the Subscribe button on iTunes and please a review only if you love the podcast! There is enough negativity in this world, don’t spread more. I love hearing about what YOU want me to talk about so feel free to leave on comment here or on social media with topics you’d like me to cover! And don’t forget, some posts have affiliate links which I may be compensated from. This compensation helps with keeping this blog and up and running! Thank you so much for your support, you guys are amazing!


Episode 61 Transcription!

This is Juli Bauer from PaleOMG and you are listening to PaleOMG Uncensored.

1. Listener questions: Fitness [7.39]
2. Listener questions: Skincare [25:53]
3. Listener questions: Food [36:00]
4. Listener questions: Miscellaneous [1:04:01]

Juli Bauer: Well hey there, guys. Welcome to another episode of PaleOMG Uncensored. I am your host tonight, and every other night. My name is Juli Bauer Roth, and I am the writer and creator of Isn’t this such a fun, dramatic intro today? You know, I feel like I should introduce myself at some point in this podcast. And since we’re at episode, I don’t know, 60? 61? I don’t f*cking know. I thought I should introduce myself, you know?

As I record this on my phone in the voice memos section of my phone; super fancy. I am in a king size bed in the St Julian Hotel in Boulder. Not half bad. I was planning to record this podcast yesterday on a Sunday. And you know what happened? I got hella wasted. And if you’ve listened to any of these podcasts before, you know I’m not a huge drinker. I’m a one cocktail kind of person; maybe two if I’m really feeling crazy that night. But multiple cocktails; no.

But here’s the thing. It was 90s night at Ophelia’s in Denver, which is a great restaurant. And I went to 90s night last year, and it was pretty much the best night ever. And they played all the straight hits. Brittany Spears, N’Sync, Backstreet Boys, Chumbawumba. All my god. All 90s. You knew all the words. So, I was very on the 90s train when I found out they had another 90s night planned. And last time, I don’t think I even drank. I think I had one drink and then I stayed on the dance floor the whole rest of the time.

But this time around I brought one of my girlfriends, who didn’t know this other group of girls. And she, of course, was probably nervous. Because you’re going into a whole group of people you don’t know. So we had cocktails together beforehand. And then she would go get two cocktails, and then I would get two cocktails. And then she was getting doubles so we didn’t have to go back to the bar. And it was just; it was a sh*t show.

This time around, they played a little bit more like Nirvana; no thank you. That’s not why I go to 90s night. I’m not trying to listen to Nirvana. I’m trying to listen to Brittany Spears, you dick. But you know what? I made the best of it. And I danced so hard. I just got a Fitbit, so I’ve been seeing how many steps I usually take. And on a day that I don’t workout, it’s probably like 10,000 to 12,000. On a day I do workout, it’s up to 15 to 17. And that night, that day and that night, it was 35,000 steps. I danced so hard, and I flipped my ponytail everywhere. Like a helicopter spin. My neck is still so sore.

So don’t remember the cab ride home. I’m a person who cannot hold my liquor because I black out right away. I don’t remember the cab ride home with my girlfriend. I plugged my phone in on the bedside table, but woke up on the couch. Not sure how. And your Fitbit tracks your sleep; and I slept 3 hours. And then I told my husband I’d go to breakfast with him that morning before he went golfing, and I was still drunk obviously when I woke up, and I made it happen. I went to breakfast. Stupid idea. I should have slept. But I was trying to be true to my word with my husband.

So, the point is, I couldn’t record a podcast yesterday while I was at home because I couldn’t form f*cking sentences. Because alcohol is poison. I don’t know how people do this every weekend. I mean, I did it three days a week in college. But I ain’t no 21-year-old anymore. This b*tch is almost 30, and she’s breaking down in the alcohol department. Hangovers are no joke. Especially when you run your own business, and Sunday means you should be working all day. Eh-he. No.

F*ck, that was terrible. That was terrible. So anyways, I’m in Boulder right now. When you hear this podcast, I’ll be in Austin. So I’m just traveling this entire week. Boulder, to Austin, then back home for a few days. Then I’m going to Tulum, them back home for a little bit. Then I go to Cabo. So it is all travel. It’s all awesome travel. Tulum is for my best friend’s 30th birthday. No biggie. She’s an old fart before me! Ew, that was annoying. I’m sorry I even said that.

Ok. But anyways. I’m recording this in the St. Julian beautiful hotel, just FYI. I have a balcony. How often do you get a balcony at a hotel? Not very often. And it is rad. So we’ve got to jump into this podcast, because it’s probably been like 5 minutes. Oh, it’s been 6 minutes, and I haven’t gotten to anything. And I can barely still form sentences.

I just went to a place and had a cocktail; I couldn’t even get the cocktail down because I thought I was going to die. And then they gave me a dessert wine; two dessert wines to taste. One was pure rubbing alcohol. It was like; this is not a dessert wine. This is hell. It was rubbing alcohol with cloves. Ugh. I can’t.

Ok. So, I put on Instagram if you guys had any questions. And I got a good amount, so I wanted to answer them all here. I love these listener question episodes. And it seems like you guys do too! And hopefully you see my Instagram posts still, because Instagram is limiting what you see at this point. Which is a huge poopy bummer.

So if you want to be up to date with everything, just try checking my Instagram by itself, instead of hoping it comes in your news feed. But who does that? I don’t. I don’t go to someone’s individual profile! Bananas.

Ok, so I tried to go through all these questions. If I miss any or I just didn’t get to yours, because time does not permit, then you can always go to and you can ask a question there and I can answer you right there. But I tried to section these into little sections. So we’re starting with fitness! Let’s get fit, bro! Ok.

1. Listener questions: Fitness [7.39]

So this is Bosk the Frog. {laughs} I don’t know if I should say people’s names, or try to even say them out. Whatever. “What is the longest amount of time you’ve gone without working out in the past couple of years?”

Five days. That is the longest I went without working out. And that was when I was trying to get my body out of adrenal fatigue and trying to take more rest days. It was 5 days. And I was writing a cookbook as well. My second cookbook. It is very stressful. And 5 days is all I took off. But that was about; I think that was 2014. So it’s been about three years. And then after that, it’s probably been 3 days in a row sometimes I’ll take off.

This next one is Sarah Hoffman. “I do body pump, but my back has been aching. I feel like I can add more weight, but then I have a sore back. So is it better to go lighter? Am I still reaping the benefits if it’s lighter weight?”

So if your back is aching and is sore, I’m guessing you’re meaning your lower back? That means that you’re not engaging your core correctly. So I would highly recommend trying to engage your core more. Thinking about your core. Taking those movements a little bit slower. Don’t go heavier on weight if you’re aching in your lower back. That’s not where you should be aching. There’s a difference between soreness in your lower back and aching. And you shouldn’t be adding weight until you really can engage that core and keep that core stable throughout your movements. So then you can actually focus on other muscles, instead of getting sore in your back. So that’s what I would recommend. And that’s what I’ve done in the past for me, if I’ve ever had any soreness in my back.

This one is from Kelsey. “What is your base push and all out wattage when you’re on the rower at Orange Theory?”

I have absolutely no idea about wattage on the rower. I usually; I don’t really even track that. I’m just feeling what it should feel like if I’m just giving a regular pace, a regular push, and then that all out. And I kind of track it by what my heart rate is doing, as well. So if I’m all out, I’m obviously in the red. High up in the red. That push; I should be in the orange. And then be able to control my breathing a little bit more in the base. So I’m sorry I don’t have an answer for that. I only know it on my treadmill.

This one says, “Could you talk about your current fitness goals and how you’re liking your new Fitbit! Thanks, Happy Thanksgiving!” You’re the best.

So, I don’t have any current fitness goals at all. {laughs} I usually just don’t have any specific goals anymore. I am just trying to be comfortable in my own skin, and proud of what I’ve accomplished and the hard work I’ve put into the gym on a weekly basis. So I don’t really have any goals. And I’m loving my new Fitbit. I feel like the only goal that I have with my new Fitbit is sleeping more. So it kind of tracks your sleep. It’s a good awakening if I didn’t take care of myself, and didn’t get to bed early enough. So even though I’m not tracking any fitness stuff, I like tracking the sleep on there. I think it’s fun.

This one is K Scott. “Thoughts on cardio and how much you do? I used to be a cardio bunny and now my CrossFit trainer is limiting me to only two met cons a week and making the rest strength and it’s a huge change of thinking.”

I don’t know. Ever since I started CrossFit, I just never think of stuff as cardio. Because it’s just a met con we do. Sometimes it’s going to be 5-minute sprint, and sometimes it’s 25-minute, 30-minute workout. So I just never think about cardio stuff. And I think it just depends on your goals. If you’re trying to increase that strength, then concentrating more on strength is what you need to do. But I just don’t really think about workouts as cardio anymore. I don’t even think; and even though I should, I don’t even think of Orange Theory as cardio. I’m just thinking of it as a workout. Where I’m doing some strength training and some cardio mixed in there. And CrossFit is the same.

And every workout I do at our CrossFit gym, we always have a strength and a met con. And that’s just how our gym does it. So yeah. I don’t have a huge viewpoint on it. I just probably do it; I work out 5 days a week, and I probably do cardio 5 days a week because we always have a met con mixed in there.

Mac Attack. “What are the best exercises to build upper back and lat strength in muscles? Also do you recommend CrossFit beginners build up weight with exercises that are most challenging for them?” Yeah, ok. “Stay at a lower weight for a while and forgo adding or somehow else.”

Mac Attack; that question is very weird. But I dig it. So, everything you do in CrossFit is very much upper back and lats. A lot of my jackets don’t fit because my lats have gotten so much bigger from CrossFit. And so; pullups, handstand pushups, push jerks, strict press. We do all kinds of different things. Overhead squats; front squats. You’re engaging your lats. Cleans; everything you’re doing is always engaging your lats and your back. I feel like my back is probably where I have most of my muscle. Because you’re constantly engaging your back, no matter what movement you’re doing. Even deadlifts you are.

And yes, highly recommend if you’re trying to get into CrossFit and trying to learn the movements, stay super light. And yes, forgo adding on weight until you’ve really nailed down that movement. Because I get dudes all the time who are like; I just need to put on more weight and I can hold the movement. I’m like; “If you can’t hold the movement with a barbell I don’t want you to try to add more weight onto it; bruh!” So yeah. Stay at a lighter weight. Crush it first. Ok? Just crush that movement. Then add some movement.

Megan Lott. Oh, shoot. {laughs} She said, “I second this question.” But I don’t know what the first question was. {laughs} But she also asks; “Have you monitored your progress in your base push and all out speeds? What made your running specific changes have you experienced? I love Orange Theory. I’ve always hated running but I’m trying to improve both my pace and endurance so I can keep up with my boyfriend during weekend runs. Do you think Orange Theory helps with running conditioning overall?”

So, I definitely have monitored my base pace, and push pace, and all out speeds. And they’ve definitely gotten better over time. But it also depends on the day; not always. And I think that Orange Theory can definitely help with your running. I am one of the faster runners at our gym, and I’ve always been a little bit on the quicker side with running. Not super, super fast. But I’m a little bit quicker, and Orange Theory has definitely conditioned me more, even when I’m adding in CrossFit movements and we have running with it, I’m able to catch my breath quicker than I was able to do so before. So I think it definitely helps with running condition.

The only thing that sucks; a treadmill is propelling you. So when you get to running on flat ground, and then you go onto hills, you don’t get the same exact feeling that you get on a treadmill. So I think it conditions you to an extent. But then it also helps you, too. If that makes sense. But it definitely has helped me, for sure. And I don’t like running. But now I just don’t care. It’s not like I would never go to a workout that had running in it. I wouldn’t not go to it.

I always think about when I first started CrossFit, and I used to get side aches all the time. And I just wanted to walk so bad in running. But I never walked, ever. Because I knew I could just keep one foot in front of the other, even if I just slowed down. So running is just that simple thing; it sucks but anybody can do it. You can continue to put one foot in front of the other. So I just don’t care about it that much. {laughs}

Ok. Hunter X Gatherer. “Exercise addiction/obsession. Have you ever gone through this? If so, how did you conquer it? I’m in college and feeling really lost. What age did you figure everything out about health and fitness?”

So yes. Exercise addiction and obsession I dealt with pretty much my entire life until probably 5; no, like 3 or 4 years ago I was able to cut the cord with that. But I felt very, very lost in college. I was extremely lost. Especially with health and fitness, and I didn’t know where to turn. College is a hard piece. If you can get your diet and exercise nailed down in college, awesome. But college is also a time for you to party hard, and stay out late, and do stupid sh*t. Because college is the best.

So I didn’t really figure out anything about health and fitness and what it really meant to me until I was probably 23, 24, out of college. But yes. I dealt with exercise addiction until probably 3 or 4 years ago. For sure.

Alyssa. I thought this question was super interesting. “What is your take on the new ‘healthy at every size’ movement? I think it challenges us to think about our definition of health. I think a better name of this movement would be ‘confident at every size’ or ‘love yourself at every size’. Because those movements I can get behind. I’m just not sure we are being honest with ourselves as a society if we discount the fact that being obese increases your chance of many illnesses and decreases your longevity significantly. I would love to hear your wise non-filtered opinion.”

Oh, I don’t know if I’m wise in any capacity. I totally agree. I think we need to remember that health is; I don’t want to piss anybody off. But when we’re saying it’s ok to be obese, that’s not the best route. I think it’s important to tell people to be confident and f*ck, how do I say it?

I think people need to remember that health can look all different sizes, but we should not be thinking it’s ok to be obese. And we should be teaching people how to get control of their weight. And that doesn’t mean you have to be super skinny. That doesn’t mean you have to be a certain size. It just means that you are eating the best foods for your body on a regular basis, and you’re taking care of yourself and staying active. And when someone is obese, they’re often not making those best decisions.

So I love the idea of confident at every size, love yourself at every size. But I do think we should be pushing the health movement even more all the time. I mean, if people knew; I don’t think that people understand the importance of food. I live in such a bubble. I live in a paleo bubble, a CrossFit bubble, healthy food bubble. So to me, I’m like; doesn’t everybody understand that the food we put in our body is energy? So if you’re putting in poison, that’s what it’s doing to your body. It’s poisoning your body.

But most people don’t have that understanding. And I didn’t have that understanding how sugar affects the body, and how alcohol affects the body just like we were talking about before. People don’t understand that. I wish we could spread that knowledge a little bit more. And hopefully we can. Companies out there are making food; healthy food, whole foods more available at cheaper prices. Amazon buying out Whole Foods; prices are coming down. So hopefully that can open the doors to more people to understand food and what it does for the body.

But I totally agree. I think we should have; instead of healthy at every size it should be love yourself at every size. And I haven’t see that “healthy at every size,” but I know where you’re coming from. And I think it’s important too, if we can erase obesity altogether, that would be f*cking awesome. And yeah, that would be rad. I don’t know if that answered your question. Because I ain’t wise, girl.

The paleo runner. “I’d love for you to talk…” geeze. See? Hung over. Poison. Alcohol. “I’d love if you could talk more about struggles with disordered eating, exercising to lose weight instead of feel good. I know you have other podcasts on that. But it inspires me to hear your advice on it.”

So that’s kind of general. It’s hard to answer a question quite like that. I dealt with disordered eating my entire life, and exercising. I always thought if I can burn way more calories than I’m eating, then I’ll be able to lose weight. But how far can your body go? And my body was just in total disarray. I was continually gaining weight from all the excessive exercise and not feeding my body properly. And I was completely inflamed and my body was inflamed.

So I finally just looked in the mirror one day, and was like; what’s happening? If you think you’re doing everything right and your body is saying, “F*ck no.” Then you probably should listen to it. So, taking more rest days, and just working out once a day, and not going excessively heavy in weights. Messing up my cortisol even more by stressing out about the body. I just left it all at the door one day. I said, “No thank you. I don’t want to do this anymore. I want to be happy.”

And the thing is, when I look back at things. When I had a lot of these disordered eating habits, and exercise habits, many of it is based off the people I was around. And think about the closest people around you. If you have negative people around you, if you have people talking about their bodies constantly. If you have people who are binging and purging, and/or starving themselves, you start to take on those habits. And growing up I always had a group of friends like that.

I had people who were anorexic, bulimic, over-exercised, hated their bodies, talked about them completely. And then I met my husband how doesn’t talk about body sh*t. He’ll mention some stuff but he doesn’t obsess. He’s in a swimsuit all the time. And we’re out on the lake constantly. So once I was around him, and around my sister-in-law, and my best friend, and all these people who just didn’t talk about that sh*t, I stopped talking about it. And I stopped obsessing about it.

So I think it’s important to remember who you’re around, and why these behaviors are happening, and how to fix them. And for me, I think it needed to be the people I was around. And then I needed to stop taking my own bullsh*t. And that’s what I was doing. I was bullsh*tting myself for a long time. So I hope that answers your question. But if you have any more specific questions, feel free to come to the blog and I can always answer them there.

2. Listener questions: Skincare [25:53]

Ok, so next is skincare. I think there are a couple more fitness questions, but they were kind of in the random section. I have a random section, ok? So this is skin care.

So this is Ellie. Ellie See Kellie. “If someone is just getting started with a skincare routine, more than just cleanser, toner, moisturizer, how should they get started?”

That’s hard. So, I found my first products that I really love, Vivant, through my esthetician. And that’s why I started trying them. So if you have an esthetician who recommends something, or a friend who has great skin and loves a certain product, I think recommendations are always helpful. And then I tried Tula, because of a friend’s recommendation and loved their products. So I think you have to find a recommendation through someone else, or a professional to help you out. And that kind of helps.

You can always go to blogs and see what people are talking about to help you kind of figure that out if you don’t have an esthetician or a friend to talk to about it. But, yeah. I’ve loved trying. My favorites are Vivant skin care, Tula, and Revision. And I also started adding L’occitane. I think I’m saying that right. To my regimen as well, and love that. I’ve heard some of these from bloggers, and then my esthetician is my other helper there.

Maggie. “Can you talk more about Botox/injection experience? Bruising, average pricing? I’ve listened to your plastic surgery podcast, but curious to hear more about that. I’m confused by units per injection. Also, what ingredients do you look for when choosing skin care products?”

So, Botox, I’ve only once ever had bruising in one spot. I don’t usually get any bruising. But bruising can occur, not usually, but sometimes. As soon as you get it done, you have a couple of bumps; because they just stuck a needle in your face. So just be aware of that. It goes down pretty quickly. But you have some bumps.

And then, let’s see. I’m not sure; I don’t even know all the details about Botox stuff. But I usually need 20 units. And that’s not 20 injections, it’s just 20 units. And usually that’s 5 injection points; 4 or 5 injection points. And it totally depends on your person. I think Botox usually is around $20 to $25 per unit. I think that’s kind of a rough average. But that’s what I paid when I’ve gone to different places.

And, oh my gosh, I have no idea what ingredients I look for when I’m choosing skin care products. {laughs} I know what my esthetician has recommended, and I trust her. And so that’s how I know. But I don’t know sh*t myself. {laughing}

Danny, “When talking about your beauty routine, you’ve said before how you hate hair except on your head. Have you ever done any laser hair removal or anything like that? Beyond just wax or shaving?”

So I’ve only; man. I haven’t stuck to my laser hair removal routine. So I’ve done it randomly. I started on my armpits. And then my esthetician moved, and she didn’t get her new laser in for a little while, so I didn’t do it. And then I got back on it, and then I forgot again. And then I started doing my arms. And then I got lazy about sticking on it. So, yeah. I started to see results on my armpits and my arms, but I just didn’t stick with it. So then it’s like; back to growing back completely normally.

I highly recommend it. If you can dish out the money to get it done, f*ck yeah. But yeah, I haven’t had much of an experience. It’s kind of annoying, kind of uncomfortable, but not like miserable. But I need to stick on it because I f*cking hate hair.

Ok, this next one, “I would love to hear about your current face routine. How Accutane worked for you, and if it’s still working today. Also, what worked for your cystic acne? Was it eating better? The kind of makeup you used? Etc.”

Ok. So, my current skin care routine; I have posts like that on the blog that you can go to and I talk about all the different products I use every night.

Accutane was amazing, and I know there are so many people out there that say it’s awful, and many people had bad experiences. I didn’t, and I’m so glad I didn’t. And I do recommend it to people, if it will work for them. And you don’t know until you try it. But I do recommend it. So right now, I was on spironolactone, and then my prescription ran out, and our insurance got changed. So I haven’t been able to go back. So I’ve been off of it for about a month, and my skin has started to break back out.

So about a year after Accutane, my skin started breaking out again. So I got on spironolactone and that was amazing. I need to go get another prescription, because I have been getting a couple of cystic zits, from changing birth control and not being on spironolactone. And being bad about drinking water, because I’ve been traveling so much.

But the things that worked the best for cystic acne, honestly, was Accutane for sure. And when my hormones weren’t screwed up. I have to stay away from nuts, like almonds, nut butters. If I’m eating too much sugar my skin usually breaks out. And then working out less. I know decreasing the testosterone probably really helped. Because that’s all I was doing, was just increasing the testosterone in my body. So yeah, it was a whole mess of things. But no, it had nothing to do with makeup or anything like that. It was just the hormones were all screwed up in my body.

Ok, this one is from Chuk-Colleen. “I’m considering getting a Profractional treatment done as well. What is the pain like? Any tips for how to lessen the pain at all during the treatment?”

Ok, so I think Profractional is extremely painful. I really do. It is extremely uncomfortable. I think it’s the most painful thing I’ve ever done for my skin, by far. And it’s really painful that day and that night after you get it done. So they’ll give you a topical numbing cream beforehand, and then you need to talk to your esthetician. Because I cannot give any doctor recommendations, because I’ll get f*cking sued.

But I can say that I took a little pain med beforehand. Don’t take my recommendation; I’m just saying what I did, ok. So if you can take a pain medication before to calm you down, that ain’t half bad. But I would talk to your esthetician. Because she’ll give you the right information. Don’t trust me; this b*tch over here. And a nerve block is pretty damn helpful, I’m not going to lie. So if you can get a nerve block too. {laughs}

Ok, here’s the thing. I did a numbing, nerve block, pain medication, and it still hurt like a motherf*cking b*tch. But, you guys, if I would recommend any one face treatment, it would be Profractional. It’s the best treatment ever. It is, seriously, outstanding. This is the second time I’ve done it, and the lines; like my smile lines around my mouth. Those fine lines have almost completely gone away. Oh my god, it is crazy. Nobody else would notice this, probably, except for me. Because I stare at myself, like in photos when I have to edit them. But the fine lines around my mouth have gotten so much smaller. It is f*cking crazy. It’s the best.

I’m going to do a blog post in January about the treatment and all the details. Just because the Profractional, as months go on, the results get better and better. It’s not just like; oh I’m refreshed, I’m brand new. They continue to get better. So I’m going to see how it goes through the month of December, and then do a post about it soon. Yeah, Profractional is where it’s at, you guys. I f*cking love that treatment. The worst thing ever, but the best thing ever. Don’t be scared to do it; do it.

3. Listener questions: Food [36:00]

Ok, Meredith Lyn. “I know you mentioned that eggs make you break out; are you still avoiding eating eggs?” By the way you guys, I’ve turned to the food section. We’re on the food now. Ok? We’ve moved onto food.

Ok, sorry Meredith, I interrupted you. “Are you still avoiding eating eggs? If so, do you have any tips for healthier breakfast options when eating out? I’m allergic to eggs and I find that when I go out, all the healthy breakfast options tend to include eggs. So I’m at a loss.”

So, I am still avoiding eggs. Once in a while; if I haven’t had eggs in a while and I go out to breakfast, and there’s no other options, then I’ll get eggs. But I also will get stuff with that. So the other day I went out to breakfast and had; it was eggs, breakfast sausage, potatoes. So I ate all the breakfast sausage and potatoes first. And if I was still a little hungry after that, then I ate a few bites of the eggs. But I didn’t end up finishing them, because I was full.

So a lot of times at breakfast places you can get sides. So you can get a side of potatoes, a side of fruit, a side of sausage, and that’s what I’ll do sometimes when I’m out to breakfast. Or a lot of places have steak and eggs, and I just ask them to hold the eggs. So I find it easier as I go, but you can always just order sides. Or ask them to get the eggs and sausage or whatever without the eggs. People will think it’s a little weird, but it’s fine. I haven’t had too much trouble with it; only once in a while.

Susan Jessup. “What are your favorite high protein foods? I’m trying to increase the protein intake, and I’d love some ideas beyond eggs and the typical beef, poultry, and fish. Thanks.”

Ok, girlfriend. Here’s the thing. Where I get my protein is meat. It’s all meat. That’s where I get my protein. I don’t turn to almonds and say that have protein in them. Or cheese has protein in it. I just don’t see those; I see almonds as fat and I see cheese as carbs. I think of protein; I think of beef, I think of chicken, I think of pork. And so that’s how I get my protein in.

I think of breakfast sausage. I have been loving my Butcher Box breakfast sausage. I just started adding it to my box. And I’ve told you guys about Butcher Box. Oh, and guess what? They are this week’s sponsor. How sweet is that? So if you want to support the podcast, you can actually support Butcher Box. And that’s how you can do it.

So I have been adding onto my normal monthly box with Butcher Box. I’ve been adding on breakfast sausage and burger patties just so I always have something easy. Their breakfast sausage; the only ingredients are like sage, salt, and water, I’m pretty sure. And it’s like the best breakfast sausage ever. I don’t know how they do it. Because most breakfast sausages have a ton, and they have sugar in them. Not theirs. It’s so simple, but it’s so good.

So if you haven’t heard me talk about Butcher Box, just a quick run down. The source the best quality grass-fed, grass finished, antibiotic and hormone free, pastured raised beef, chicken, and pork, and they deliver it straight to your doorstep. And they make it super easy. All you have to do is select your box. You can customize it to your liking. And then set up a schedule of how often you want to receive your Butcher Box. They offer free shipping to the contiguous 48 states. And each classic box is filled with 8-11 pounds of meat. But you can get bigger boxes than that. So they really let you customize it to your liking. And now they have the custom box, where you can pick exactly what you want in your order.

And if you want to try Butcher Box out, for new subscribers they have a special deal going on right now. All you have to do is go to and you’ll get $10 off your first order, plus 2 free grass-fed grass finished filet mignons. Have you guys had filet mignons? It is the best. And these are so tender, you can almost cut them with a fork. I swear they’re so good.

I have seriously loved Butcher Box. I’ve worked with them for, I don’t know, probably 8 months at this point. And they have been such a cool company. I had Mike, the creator, on the podcast in case you missed that one. And he talks about his company, so you can really better understand why better sourced meat is so important. So go check that one out. But if you want to support the podcast, go to and then try out your first order. Get $10 off your first box, and then two free grass-fed, grass finished filet mignons. That’s for you Susan; get more meat!

Ok, next one. I like this question. This is from Ally. “Hey. Love, love, love your blog and podcast.” Well, Ally; I f*cking love you, girlfriend. “I generally eat pretty well, but I think I go wrong with portions that are too large. That said; how do you handle hunger? Do you consciously stop yourself from eating because you think you’ve had enough? Or do you stop when you feel like you’ve had enough? I generally see myself as hopeless because I don’t know if I’ll ever succeed in stopping myself from eating a meal while I’m still hungry. Would love to hear your thoughts.”

I think that’s something most people struggle with, is portion size. So I always have a small plate. I use a salad plate, and that’s more so because it looks visually more appealing when you have this full looking plate for photos. That’s why I’ve always done that. My husband uses a huge plate; he thinks the small plate is stupid. Which is understandable.

But at this point, I’ve got a better gauge on how much of what I have on my plate I’ll need. What I mean by that is I know how much steak I’ll want. Or how much fish I’ll want. And I find that I’m able to understand my hunger cues when I’m not overdoing it in the starch department. Especially at dinner. I tend to have starches a little bit earlier in the day, and try not to overdo it at night, and get more green vegetables in.

And if I have, say, on my plate carrots, I have collard greens, and I have steak. I usually know how much steak I’ll need. I’ve just gotten better at it over the years. But I can throw on as much greens and carrot on my plate. And when I start eating, and I’m really hungry and start eating. But then I tend to slow down a little bit, and I might want to go in for another bite because it just tastes so good and I like eating. But I might have this; ugh, I’m not feeling it quite as much. That’s when I kind of know that I’m satisfied.

So it’s just that feeling of slowing down. I try to get my husband to slow down, because he eats really fast. So I slow down when I’m eating. I put my fork down multiple times. Hang out for a little bit. Chew my food. Drink some water. And that helps me just kind of regulate how satisfied I am.

So I always think of it as; I’m eating until I’m satisfied, not full. I hate the feeling where you feel like you can’t take a deep breath in because you’ve eaten so much. So I always try to stop before that. And where I’m just satisfied. So I don’t know if that totally helps, but that’s kind of how I gauge it. When I’m slowing down on food.

I find it’s much easier to overeat when I have starchy carbs. Like white potatoes or rice. I can overdo that a little bit quicker. If it’s just greens and more greens; like asparagus and arugula salad, I am going to slow down on that at a better pace than if it was a starchier carb and I’m kind of getting carb addicted. I hope that makes sense. Hopefully that answer your question, Ally. Because you’re the best!

Anna. “What’s your go-to meal when you’re feeling kind of bored with paleo and want to mix it up, but still keep it clean?”

Oh man. That’s hard. If I’m feeling kind of bored, I usually just buy something that I normally wouldn’t. Like, the other day I was feeling bored with everything, so I went to Whole Foods and I bought a Chilean sea bass. It’s expensive, and it’s not something I buy on a regular basis, ever. Once every 6 to 8 months probably. But it’s so easy to make, and it’s fatty, delicious fish. So I love that.

And then I’ll usually just do a different kind of vegetable that I haven’t done in a little while. That’s my easiest way of keeping it clean. Doing a vegetable that I haven’t had, and then switching up the meat. And I know that’s super boring, but if I’m getting kind of bored, I don’t want to make more recipes. I don’t want to turn to someone else’s book and make more recipes. I just don’t like doing that. So I just like to keep it simple and just buy food that tastes good on its own with minimal effort. {laughs} Minimal effort is where it’s at.

Ok, let’s see. “What’s your opinion…” Oh, this one’s good. Erin. “What’s your opinion on the anti-meat documentaries? There are lots of them, and they make meat sound like the number one cause of disease. I’m also paleo, and obviously eat my fair share of meat. I try to buy local, quality meat, but their opinions kind of freak me out sometimes. Can you share why you think meat is a healthy good option, and explain the reasons why you chose to be paleo?”

So, this is what I recommend you do. Because I don’t have the scientific knowledge or background to explain it. So I recommend you go to Robb Wolf. You can search on his website, on You can search What the Health, and he breaks down. Because that’s the number one documentary out there; like vegan documentary. And you have to remember that these people who made this film are hardcore f*cking vegans. Like, hardcore. Throw blood on people, type vegans. {laughs}

So, just read his little tidbit about the documentary. And he breaks down the facts. When they are giving you facts, he breaks down to what they actually mean. And he has a much better understanding of it. I don’t watch those documentaries, because I think it’s all bullsh*t. I know where my meat comes from. Luckily, thanks to Butcher Box. And I know that I’m getting the best quality sources of protein in my diet. And because I know where the meat is coming from, I know what’s going into my body.

I completely agree that if you’re eating sh*tty quality meat, that’s what you’re consuming. So you’re consuming this sh*tty quality product. But if you’re consuming high quality, where you know where you’re getting it from. You know where the animal has been and what kind of life it’s gone through and what it’s been fed. Then you’re not getting that same poison that can be going into so many of the animals that are regular common grocery stores.

So go check out Robb Wolf. He’ll give you some answers. It sounds like you just want some reassurance. And Robb Wolf is where it’s at. He is amazing, and will break it down. But stop watching those documentaries. Go watch documentaries about; I want to watch. I just listened to this podcast, Mouthing Off, with Olivia Caridi. Sorry if I’m saying that wrong. And she had a porn star on there. Highly interesting. And they talk about some documentary that’s about women going into porn. Watch that kind of documentary. That’s interesting, girl!

Ok, Jenna. “Are you restrictive with your food? Is there anything that makes you feel sluggish, food wise?”

I don’t think of myself as restrictive with food. I just don’t eat some of the sh*tty food out there. So I don’t eat gluten. And I don’t eat packaged crap. And I don’t drink pop. So all those things would make me feel sluggish, and that’s why I don’t eat them. And I don’t eat almond butter because that makes me feel sick and it makes my skin break out. So there’s definitely some foods that I don’t eat. But I don’t miss them, either.

Jenna, “If you could only bake one paleo good for the rest of your life, which would you pick?”

I’m going to go with my double chocolate soft and chewy cookies, because they’re so delicious. And they’re great any day of the week, ok. Double chocolate soft and chewy cookies. Plug!

Sprouty. I like your name. {laughs} “I would absolutely love it if you talked about how eating more carbs allowed you to get the body that you have now. Carbs are one of my fear foods, and I would love to hear you talk about good things they did for you, talking about starches more so than veggies, since I get plenty of those. I’ve followed for a while, and was waiting for another listener question episode.” Why do I suck at reading so bad? Ugh, I’m the worst.

Ok. So, I was very restrictive with carbs before, and my body was craving them and I would just not eat them. Or I ate a lot of sweet potatoes at one point when I was competing, and sweet potatoes made me feel really bloated and sick. So I don’t really eat sweet potatoes very often anymore.

So when I had my f*ck it moment after competing, and I was like; I continue to gain weight and all I’ve done is restrict my diet, I’m going to eat what I want. And my body was telling me it wanted carbs. So I added a little bit more rice into my diet, and white potatoes. And those are the main starches. And I started adding those in whenever I wanted them. And that doesn’t mean I had them every day. And I still don’t have them every day. It was just when my body was craving it. And if I had, maybe a longer, more intense workout, I would have a little bit more carbs than I usually would because my body would be craving them more.

But I just try not to over do it. Like I kind of said a couple of questions ago; I don’t want to get to that point where I’m feeling overly full, and that’s how I know I’ve overdone it with those starchier carbohydrates. So when I started adding in carbohydrates, my body actually lost weight. And I know that’s against everything that everyone else says, but that’s really what happened.

But it was all kinds of things mixed into that. Like working out less, and not sending my body into adrenal fatigue, and reducing my cortisol and not worrying and stressing all the time. So I think all those things played in there. But I just try not to overdo it, and I just don’t overdo it at every meal. I don’t have these starchier carbohydrates at every meal, either.

Colleen. Let’s see; “I’ve heard you say that you like to eat carbs on your podcast before, when you were explaining why you’re not a huge fan of keto. Can you share which ones you eat and how often you include them in your diet?”

Dammit. I feel like I was doing pretty good without yawns. But I’m sinking down more into the bed. More and more. I haven’t even taken my fake eyelashes off yet. Oh, they’re wanting to come off. Ok, I’ll peel it off. F*ck it.

Ok, so I obviously kind of just said that. But I do like white rice; brown rice makes me sick to my stomach. It makes me bloated. And I like white potatoes; sweet potatoes kind of make me bloated. I love butternut squash, any other squashes like pumpkin or delicata squash. Those are the main ones I have. But white potatoes and rice I like to have whenever. I don’t make white rice at home, but whenever I’m at Chipotle I always get white rice. And yeah, those are the ones I like the most.

This is from Gavin. “How is your husband’s food diagnosis coming? What is he allergic to? Updates please?!”

Oh my gosh, my poor husband. I think he gets annoyed that I talk about him on the podcast. So I asked him if he would come on my podcast, and he was like; why would I come on the podcast? I’m like, I don’t know. A couple of people asked if I would have you on. And he’s like, I don’t know what I would talk about. I think that’s stupid. He was so not into it. Ugh, come on, bruh! Support me. {laughs}

Jokes on him. Still going to talk about him. So my husband has been feeling sick for quite a while now. And he went in and did the Dunwoody blood test. D-U-N-woody. Like a boner. So he did the blood test. And it gives you this big breakdown of everything you’re allergic to. And it gives you like, within 24 hours of ingesting something, up to 72 hours. So he’s allergic to pretty much everything he was eating on a regular basis. So pork, chicken, oranges, grapes; it’s like, everything. Black pepper.

So his diet has been very restrictive. And pretty much what this is saying is he has, from what I understand, is he has leaky gut and we really just need to heal his gut. So we’ve cut out all alcohol. We’ve cut out all those foods. He’s been really restrictive with his diet. And he’s had some days where he feels really good and then other days he is back to not feeling great.

Thanksgiving was one of those days; he’s not supposed to have dairy, and everything that our friend made had dairy in it. So he wasn’t feeling great after that. And when he traveled to Vegas for work; he didn’t drink there. I can’t believe that. And then; I mean think about everything. When you’re going to a buffet, it has fruit. He’s allowed to have fruit, but it’s usually melon and cantaloupe, and he’s not supposed to have those. He’s not supposed to have pork and that’s all the usual breakfast sausage or bacon. That’s all that’s there. So that was challenging for him. And he was not feeling great after that.

So we’re just trying to heal his gut. Get lots of bone broth in, and see how it goes. But it’s going to probably be a longer road than he wants it to be. Because leaky gut is real.

Ok this next question. “How do you handle events where food isn’t paleo? Like company events, friend’s parties or holidays. Totally walking into a non-paleo Thanksgiving. Do you not eat? Eat anyway? Bring your own cooler?”

So, it depends on the event. Say you have a holiday party, and you know it’s going to be sh*tty food, I usually will eat beforehand. Or I’ll eat things there that I know aren’t going to make me super sick. So, I was just; I’ve got to pull myself. The bed keeps pulling me in guys, {laughs} it keeps pulling me in!

So I was at a Thanksgiving party, and we were eating Thanksgiving dinner. And I don’t usually eat dips or a ton of chips. I had plenty of that; because I knew that wasn’t going to make me sick. Having a cheesy dip, that’s not going to make me feel sick to my stomach.

And then I stayed away from any of the foods that would make me feel too uncomfortable. Like stuffing. And I stuck with things that I knew my body could handle a little better. Of course, I was feeling overly full because everything was made with cream and butter, so it was super heavy. But I wasn’t feeling painfully sick.

So I think as you get better with paleo, you can manage those situations a little bit better and understand what foods affect you and how and what you can eat. But then if there are small holiday parties, or just little events, I usually eat beforehand so I don’t find myself snacking. I’ll get a drink to sip on, so I don’t want to go in for all the cookies or whatever else. That’s kind of how I juggle those sitches.

OK, this is from Haven Amy. “How do you practice moderation so well when you receive so many delicious samples? AKA, bags of Siete chips, or bags of dried fruit, or Eating Evolved chocolate. Do you use soap on more than you’re baking?”

So what she means by that is I totally put soap on baked goods. If something; if a dessert fails, I have to put it in the trash because it failed. And then I have to put soap on it so I don’t go back into it. I have to hide things; bury them in the trash.

So the Siete chips is the hardest. Because when they send me stuff; I have a hard time stopping with Siete chips. So if I see myself gaining weight. Because my body gains weight every day, changes up and down. Then I know I need to cut myself off. I think with the dried fruit or chocolate, I’ve just gotten better at it that I just don’t crave it as much. But I’ll also share it with friends, or put stuff in the freezer for when I want it later.

But I’ve just gotten better at it. I feel like when I told myself I couldn’t have something; like, say I was like, “I can’t have sugar.” Then; oh my gosh, all the lights turned out. I think the power just went out here. Cool.

So, when I told myself I couldn’t have something, then I wanted it so much more. But now that I know I can have sugar whenever I want it, then I’ll have that whenever I want it. Instead of it sitting there calling my name and wanting it so much more. So I think that’s how I’ve been able to practice moderation; knowing I can have it at any point if I want it, but do I really want it at this point? Does that make sense? But I definitely have to soap stuff sometimes. For sure.

I’m listening to the hallway, because our power just went out. It’s so spooky. It’s so spooky! They can probably hear me talk to myself.

OK. This is Selina; “How do you find success in not overindulging while eating out? Do you have personal goals that you tend to follow to ensure you don’t overeat, such as not eating everything on the plate? Only eat three bites of dessert? I’ve followed you for several years, and have also learned to listen to my body. However, sometimes I fall into overindulge mode while being out and find that I overeat at times. I love your photos of your before meals. Would you consider periodically posting pictures of your after meals while eating out.”

{laughs} No. I will not be doing that. {laughing} So I think it’s definitely hard when you eat out. Because the food, when you eat out, is so much heavier. Maybe it’s cooked in a lot of fat, butter. It has cream in it; so it’s just easy to overindulge in those things. Especially if you don’t have them on a regular basis. So I just, for me, I try. I don’t usually order dessert very often, unless say I’m traveling; right now, I’m promoting Boulder. So I want to make sure I try multiple things. But I just make sure; say I’m having dessert. And I know if I eat much more of something on my plate I’m going to get overly full. I just put my fork down, and I move the plate.

I have literally; I’m not joking about this. If I’m done but I still want to eat it but I’m full, I’ll put either a towel on top, and I’ve even poured some of my drink on my food to stop me from eating it. Because I just know when I’m full and I need to cut myself off. But that’s my main thing; just knowing when I’m full and I’m satisfied and I don’t want to be overly full and stopping myself then. That’s how I kind of gauge it. Is; “Ok, I don’t want to be uncomfortably full. Time to stop.”

But ordering the right things is what’s very helpful for that. So today going to a restaurant and I have a beet salad, and then I have greens on this plate, and carrots, and a protein, and then trying not to overindulge in the starches. That is what makes me feel satisfied, and I still get a ton of food in, and I’m not feeling overly full. So hopefully that answers your question.

4. Listener questions: Miscellaneous [1:04:01]

Ok. This is Rosie. Let’s see; “Over the years you have grown and changed, but your blog, social media posts have transformed with you. So cool to watch. With that, it looks like you’re fancying up your how-to videos with awesome videos these days. Is this a new lane you’re exploring for content creation? I love it. In addition, what are your goals you have for PaleOMG in 2018?”

So, yes, I just started working with a company that does cooking videos. So they hire a team to come to your house and film these cooking videos. And it’s been awesome. I’ve only done 6 videos. I’m putting those on the blog every Tuesday. I did 6 old recipes first, just to get a hang of these cooking videos. And I love it. I think it’s just a great way to engage people in a different way. I haven’t had much feedback on it, but hopefully people like them.

I think it’s just another way to share with the world what you’re putting out there, and people to connect with you. Because they see you talking instead of just seeing a picture of you and hearing your voice sometimes on Instagram stories. I think it’s just a great avenue to engage people more. So hopefully I can just continue to do those. I’m trying to do one video a week, and then maybe I’ll get to increase that to even more.

But I have no idea for 2018 goals. Zero. I haven’t even thought about 2018. I have so much to do in December, that I kind of forgot 2018 is right around the corner. I totally forgot. So I’ll have to get back on you… Get back on you, what? I’m going to have to get back to you. But thank you for informing me that I need to set more goals in my life. I appreciate it. And more cooking videos. I know that much.

Damn, I really need to think that over.

Ok, Melissa says, “What do you order when you go to Starbucks or a local coffee shop? I know you use stevia in your coffee, but what are your thoughts on Truvia?”

So if I go to Starbucks, I usually get an iced coffee. And I’ll ask for a side of heavy cream, because that’s what I use in my own coffee at home, and then I can add my own cream. When they add cream, I just find they add way too much cream. So I just ask for a small cup on the side and I add it myself.

If I’m going to a local coffee shop, and they have almond milk. And most places in; oh, the power just came on, guys. We are back in business. I’m not sitting in pitch black anymore! {laughs}

So if I’m at a local coffee shop and they have almond milk; which most coffee shops in Denver do. I will sometimes get an almond milk latte. And that’s about it. Sometimes I add; if they have raw sugar, I’ll add that. If I’m in a sugary mood. If not then I just don’t. I like iced coffee and cream by itself without the sugar.

Oh, and I know nothing about Truvia. So I can’t tell you. I’m sure; people talk bad about stevia, so I’m sure they talk bad about Truvia, too. But I know nothing about it.

I had a couple of questions about this. I had two people who asked this question. They ask, “What does your husband do for work? Just curious because you say he works all the time.” And you know what? I’m not sharing that information. {laughing} But I thought I would talk about it because two people asked that question. But yeah, he’s the general manager of a company. He’s the best.

Ok, Kimberly. “Holiday traditions with you and your hubby. Would love to see a picture of the two of you.”

{laughs} No, silly! Only his back. Only the back of his head.

So, ok. Here’s the thing. I’m not a big holiday person. And I really want to be. But the holidays have become pretty negative in my mind over the years. So first of all, let’s first talk Thanksgiving. This is what I think about Thanksgiving. My mom used to have this guy over all the time, or we would go to his house for Thanksgiving. She worked with him. I’m pretty sure my parents met at his work a long time ago. She was friends with him for years.

When he would come to our house, and I would be playing in my room by myself, he would always come in and play with me. And then he would always give me these really long hugs. And he would always make time to hang out with just me. So I get to about 11 or 12, and we’re over at his house for Thanksgiving, and I have a coke or something. And he’s like, “Do you want something to make that drink more fun?” I was like, ok. And he put so much rum in my drink, and I had not drank alcohol at that point because I was f*cking 11 or 12. And I took a sip of it, and I’m like; what the f*ck?

At that point, I was like. Ok, this guy is f*cking creepy. I’m 11 or 12 years old, and I know I’m feeling uncomfortable, and this isn’t ok. So I think I didn’t get the balls to say it to my mom until I was probably 14 or 15 and I’m like, “I’m not going to that dude’s house anymore. He creeps me the f*ck out. He’s absolutely a child molester, or just… I don’t know. He’s gross. Not into it.”

So that’s what I think about, on Thanksgiving we used to go to a child molester’s house. That’s the memory I have tied to Thanksgiving. So it’s hard to break out of that mode.

And then most of my Christmases, as I was entering into any teenage years and older, were me and my mom fighting. {laughs} So I don’t have this amazing holiday viewpoint, because it was just fighting all the time.

So it’s hard to find the holidays joyful like some of my friends do, and my husband does. Because I don’t have as many memories tied to those joyful things. I told him; I’m like, I need to find new memories of things we can do. To me, I don’t want to receive presents. I don’t think; I mean, I’m sure other people in our family would want to receive presents. But I don’t want to receive presents. I don’t want to do the normal Christmas gifting stuff. I would rather donate money, give back, have those people who could buy us gifts donate that money. That’s what I would prefer to do. And create new memories around that.

So we’re really trying to find new ways to celebrate the holidays. I personally really want to spend our holidays in a new, a different country. Like go to the Bahamas. Go to French Polynesia. I don’t know; anywhere. That’s the holiday tradition I’m trying to push. But my husband is not as into that. He’s more of a traditionalist. But I’ll break him. Who doesn’t want to be in f*cking Mexico on Christmas? Well, many people. But I want to be on the beach, drinking a margarita, eating some chips and guac, ok? That sounds like a great holiday to me.

So I’m sorry to disappoint you, but I have no holiday traditions yet. We’ve got to think of some.

Meg Bug. “Are you going to try out for any other cooking competition type shows? I think you’d be so great on Next Food Network Star or something like that.”

And, no. So I interviewed for Food Network Star and I never heard back anything. I was super stressed out about it, and then when I didn’t get a call back, I’m like; f*ck yeah. That sounds awful. As I watch these shows more often, how stressful they look. And then it’s like; you just get humiliated on national television. I’m cool. I’ll just humiliate myself on my own terms, not on a producer’s terms. You know? So no. No plans for that.

Lisa. “Do you shop small boutiques anymore, or do you avoid shopping at places that you can’t promote?”

So clothing, I don’t shop at a ton of smaller boutiques anymore for clothing. Once in a while, if I find a piece I really like, I really like going in those stores and seeing what they have. One of my favorite boutiques in town, Inspire Boutique in Denver, I honestly go in there just for the candles alone. They have the best smelling candles in there. But I shop more at places that I can promote because whenever I’m wearing something, if I don’t promote it, I’ll always get a message. “Where is that from?” And so I want to have links for places. And obviously not all boutiques have online places.

So yeah, I like to shop smaller for the little knick knack stuff, that kind of thing. But I don’t shop quite as often as I did small boutiques years ago before I started doing the fashion piece on the blog. It sucks when you tell someone you just got it at a local spot, and they can’t get their hands on it, you know?

This next question. “I just got a puppy, and man is she a lot of work. I’d love to hear your thoughts about raising Jackson. Your method of training, and how you managed to get everything done when he was a pup?”

Oh my gosh. Having a puppy is the worst. It’s the best, it’s literally the best. But it’s the worst. They’re just so naughty.

Ok, so we had literally no training. {laughs} Like, no method of training. We were in an apartment at the time, so potty training was hard because we’d have to go to our door, then go down the hall to another door, then go downstairs. And he just couldn’t get it. So he would pee all the time inside. Thank god it wasn’t our house. Sorry to the guy out there we stayed at; I apologize.

We finally got a pee pad and put it out on our balcony. And he took to it right away. I’m like; f*ck, why didn’t we do this from the beginning? I could have saved half of our couch that we had to throw in the trash because he pissed all over it.

So it’s super hard. But you just figure it out. You figure out what works for your dog and you. And he’s a pretty good dog. He has a hard time listening when other dogs are around. And when food is around, he likes to attack other dogs. So we’re not great with the training section. Ok? But he can be off a leash pretty well. Unless another dog comes around. He’ll just hang out in our yard. And sometimes he’s gotten out, and we don’t know where he is; and he’s just hanging out in our yard. So you’ll figure it out. You will. You can always take puppy classes, but we didn’t do that because we were too lazy. So I’m the worst at explaining anything.

Ok, this one is from Leash. “I know you talked about trolls before, and why you don’t post about your husband. Has anyone stalked your life to find him and then trolled him too? You said you would f*cking cut someone if they said anything about him, and I can relate to that.”

{laughs} So I have no idea if someone has stalked our life. I get a couple of comments, people messaging me to let me know that they can see stuff on my Facebook. I don’t know how to f*cking change my Facebook. I don’t even want a Facebook. Honestly; if I could delete my Facebook right now, I would. But I need my business page. It’s like, important or something. I don’t know; people are creepy so I’m sure that has happened. But I haven’t had people stalk me in real life. {laughs} Or my husband.

Darcy. “Was there something specific that made you decide to become a food blogger? Also, did you always see yourself going down this career path?”

Absolutely not. {laughs} I never saw myself becoming a food blogger, because when I started blogging, blogging was fairly new. And it hadn’t exploded to what it is now. So, I thought I would be a personal trainer. I thought that was going to be my career path. Owning a gym, or working in corporate wellness. And that’s what I did after college, was working on corporate wellness before I started coaching CrossFit. And then I thought I might own a CrossFit gym. And yeah, so I never saw myself going down this career path.

My main thing was it was what I loved doing the most. And what I put so much time into. So as I started to see it grow, I’m like; if I triple my time into it, what could it really grow into? And that’s when I started going full time.

Ok. This one. I don’t know this name. Learn 111. “Your clothes are awesome!” Thanks, you’re the best! “Where do you look for inspiration? How much time do you allocate to fashion each week? Other question: I cut out drinking alcohol, and feel great. But boy, does it make other people feel uncomfortable. Why do people care so much? Do you ever get sick of explaining that you aren’t pregnant, but aren’t drinking?”

So, number one question; I don’t know where I get my inspiration from. I follow a ton of different fashion bloggers, but I think I just pick out stuff that I like at the end of the day, and what I think is cute and colors that I like to go together and that’s kind of how I do it. And I allocate a lot of time to fashion each week. It’s finding the outfits, it’s getting all the outfits packed in my car, taking the photos, editing the photos. Getting the links prepared for the posts and the Instagram posts. So it’s many, many hours per week allocated to fashion, for sure.

About drinking; it definitely makes other people feel uncomfortable, because they are either insecure, and they feel like you’re judging them for drinking. That can usually be the case. I see it all the time, especially with people from my gym. They’ll ask; they’ll be like, “Why don’t you drink that much?” I’m like, well it makes me feel fat. And they’ll instantly be like, “Oh, I want to be fat. I don’t care.” I’m like; it had nothing to do with you. But I’m just explaining why I don’t because you asked me. And they always turn it back to them. So it’s just their own insecurity.

And yes, I get sick of people asking why I’m not drinking. Which is why I don’t go out a ton. I don’t go to a ton of friend functions, because I don’t want to say why I’m not drinking or be pushed by those people who feel uncomfortable with me not drinking. Not all friends are like that, but there’s definitely those few. And so I just don’t go to those parties as much. I have to be in the right mood to be able to do that.

Ok, just a handful. Just five more questions. Cassy, “I have really bad fatigue and anxiety. All blood tests have come back normal, which makes me believe it’s stress and anxiety. Hoping to use nutrition to improve my symptoms. Any suggestions, advice, or experiencing managing anxiety with nutrition? I eat fairly clean, but I do eat gluten and basically anything and everything in moderation.”

Ok, so absolutely nutrition can definitely help with those things. Why not try taking those things out? So if you’re wondering if paleo would help with that; why not take out gluten and those foods that aren’t part of the paleo diet? Why not take them out and try that for 30 days? If you eat fairly clean, it shouldn’t be a huge transition for you. So why not try that? Because I know that can absolutely help with stress and anxiety.

I was dealing with some depression before going paleo, and that completely went away. So definitely check that out. But make sure you’re thinking about this anxiety in other ways than just food, too. Whether that means that you need to meditate, or need to be working out. Whatever your way of getting stress, dealing with anxiety is. Make sure you’re doing those things. If that means going on a walk with your family. Or your dog. Whatever it is; doing those things on a regular basis. Deep breathing.

Whenever I’m feeling stress and anxiety, I try to do deep breathing for 10 minutes or so. Just regulating that a little bit more. But yeah, if you eat fairly clean, why not try paleo for 30 days. See how you feel. See what changes. And then make sure you’re doing those other things that deal with stress and anxiety as well.

Lindsey Katherine; “Hey girl! Will you ever do a retreat/meetup somewhere tropical, or even anywhere at all? I bet so many people would be interested.”

Lindsey Katherine, I have done that before. I worked with Under 30 experiences, and I did a trip to Costa Rica, and it was great. And I loved Costa Rica so much I took my husband back there. So yes, I definitely have done that in the past. And I planned to. And I’ve been in talks with them about doing one in the future. So yeah, you’ll have to stay tuned on the blog for that. I don’t know if it will be tropical, but it will be somewhere fun. So hopefully that trip does come to fruition. But yeah, who knows. That would be rad. But I have done it before.

Kirsten. “How do you figure out the tech part of your website? Was it easy to learn, or have you had luck with a hosting site?”

I 100% do not think it’s easy to learn, and so I hire people to do that. I got lucky finding a great host that I’ve loved, but then I work with a developer and he developed the whole website. And any issues that I have, I can turn to him. And he is there all the time. He’s f*cking awesome.

And I got lucky through another friend. I asked who she went through for her website, and that’s how I found him. But I can’t figure it out on my own, I don’t have the time, and I don’t have the willpower. No.

Mel. “Did you ever think about taking a regular corporate job? Why or why not?”

F*ck yeah, in the beginning. And I was in corporate wellness right after I graduated and thought I would be in that. But I was bored out of my mind. So yeah, I will never ever go back to a corporate job. I guess never say never. But I don’t know how I would. When you work for yourself, going back to corporate would be hella weird.

Ok, last but not least. The Top Knot Life. That is the best Instagram handle. The Top Knot Life. “This has probably already been asked, but when you visit cities you have posted, are they sponsored? Do cities contact you and ask you to visit and review? I love the posts and find them…” God. I hate myself. I need to go to bed. It’s 9 p.m. “I love the post, and find them very interesting. Just curious how it comes about.”

So I met this girl while I was on book tour, and she used to work for the visitor bureau of Phoenix. And she started talking about how different cities will host bloggers, or just people in media. And kind of set up trips for them to showcase the city. So she started helping me set up these trips.

So, she’ll contact; like I did one in Santa Ynez. So she knew the people at Santa Ynez, she contacted them, talked about what I do on my blog and what I’d be interested in talking about. And I’m interested in outdoor activities, fitness, food, gluten free, paleo, farm to table, local ingredients. So that’s what the visitor bureau will kind of set up a trip around that. And places that they want to showcase and promote for their city. So I’ll do a blog post about that.

So those meals are comped, and my stay is usually comped. But it’s not a paid post, I just do that post for free. So yeah, that’s kind of how those come about. And I’m sure there’s so many different ways people have gone about doing those types of trips. But yeah, that’s how I’ve done it. And it’s been super fun.

So yeah. I’ve also had a hotel contact me, but I know a lot of friends who are in the blogging industry who they contact those places themselves, or they’ll be contacted. So it’s kind of all over the place. So yeah, that’s how I do it.

So thank you guys for writing in. I’m sorry if I missed any of your questions. It’s just an hour and 30 minutes in, and I must go to bed. I sound sick, I don’t know why. But thank you guys so much for leaving questions. If I missed any and you’re like; “What the hell Juli, I hate your guts!” Please come to and you can leave your question there. I’d be happy to answer it.

And then make sure you go to Instagram, because I always ask for questions randomly. I was thinking about doing these listener questions episodes, since they seem to do so well, every two or so. So if you have any questions, feel free to write in next time I post one of these Instagram posts.

And don’t forget, if you want to support the podcast, you can go check out Butcher Box. That’s the sponsor this week. That’s and you’ll get $10 off your first order. And, 2 free filet mignons. I think they’re 6 ounces. Pretty bomb.

So thank you guys so much for listening in. You’re the best. Don’t forget to rate, review, and subscribe. And I will see you next time on another episode of PaleOMG Uncensored. Bye!

Answering your questions in this weeks episode! ____________ Big Thank You This Weeks Sponsor – ButcherBox ButcherBox sources and delivers the best quality grass-fed, grass-finished, antibiotic and hormone-free, pasture-raised beef, Answering your questions in this weeks episode! ____________ Big Thank You This Weeks Sponsor – ButcherBox ButcherBox sources and delivers the best quality grass-fed, grass-finished, antibiotic and hormone-free, pasture-raised beef, chicken and pork straight to your doorstep. And getting your […] PaleOMG Uncensored yes 1:28:13
Interview w/ Siete Foods – Episode 60: PaleOMG Uncensored Podcast Sat, 25 Nov 2017 13:51:00 +0000 3 Today on the podcast, I’m talking to Miguel and Veronica of Siete Foods. If you haven’t tried their grain-free tortillas and tortilla chips, it’s time to have your life changed. No one else makes tortillas and tortilla chips like them […] Today on the podcast, I’m talking to Miguel and Veronica of Siete Foods. If you haven’t tried their grain-free tortillas and tortilla chips, it’s time to have your life changed. No one else makes tortillas and tortilla chips like them and it has been amazing to see their company grow from the very beginning. This family is proving that hard work and dedication really does pay off. I’m so lucky to call these amazing people my friends and I hope their story inspires you to chase your own dreams!


 Support the podcast by clicking the Subscribe button on iTunes and please a review only if you love the podcast! There is enough negativity in this world, don’t spread more. I love hearing about what YOU want me to talk about so feel free to leave on comment here or on social media with topics you’d like me to cover! And don’t forget, some posts have affiliate links which I may be compensated from. This compensation helps with keeping this blog and up and running! Thank you so much for your support, you guys are amazing!


Episode 60 Transcription!

This is Juli Bauer from PaleOMG and you are listening to PaleOMG Uncensored.

Juli Bauer: Hello. Welcome to another episode of PaleOMG Uncensored. Today is a very special day, because I have on not only some of my close friends now, but a very cool business that has entered into the paleo world and now the entire world. Today, I have Miguel and Veronica of Siete Foods, here to chat all about their business. Thank you guys so much for coming on!

Miguel: Thank you!

Veronica: Thanks for having us on.

Juli Bauer: Are you guys in your sound studio you have at the office?

Veronica: {laughs}

Miguel: I wish we were, but we’re actually; one of our employees wasn’t feeling well so he quarantined himself in there. So we’re actually in our gym.

Juli Bauer: Oh that’s hilarious. Quarantined himself; like, go home. Why doesn’t he just go home?

Veronica: Exactly. We didn’t have any Lysol to clean the room up.

Miguel: It’s because, you know, he’s committed to being around.

Juli Bauer: Jeeze, that’s a big commitment.

Veronica: Should we call him out on the podcast?

Miguel: {laughs}

Veronica: {laughs}

Juli Bauer: Yeah. Like, you have a sound room for pretty much the purpose of recording a podcast with me once a year.

Veronica: I know!

Juli Bauer: Ok. So for the people who don’t know about Siete, which I feel like the whole world knows about it now. Can you guys give a little background about Siete foods, how you guys started this business, what you guys have to offer, what kind of products you’re producing. Pretty much the background about you guys.

Veronica: Sure. Siete has been around since 2014. We really got our start out of a necessity. I was dealing with multiple autoimmune conditions for many years. I was diagnosed with something called ITP, which basically means low platelet counts, when I was 17 years old. And it just kind of grew from there. Then I was diagnosed with lupus. Years later diagnosed with Hashimoto’s. So just dealing with all of that stuff for many years. Medications and doctors wanting to take out my spleen.

In 2009, this was around the time when CrossFit was becoming pretty well known. People were starting to follow paleo diets. My brother, my older brother Rob, had done some research. He was really concerned for my health. And he was reading a lot of people online were saying that they felt better when following a grain-free, paleo type of diet. People dealing with autoimmune conditions.

So I decided to give that a try on his suggestion. And when I started following that diet, it kind of worked out where my whole family sort of jumped on board with me. There are 7 of us in my family, so myself, my parents, and all of my siblings, we were eating grain free. And we grew up in Laredo, Texas, which is right on the border with Mexico. We’re Mexican-American. So things like tortillas were part of our diet every day growing up. They were literally something where, you’re not necessarily eating them with a taco; with ingredients inside of them. Sometimes it’s just like bread that you have on the table that you’re using as a fork.

So when we went grain free, that was something that we were missing out on because there was nothing that we could find on the shelves that fit into our diet, that could serve as a tortilla. I guess you could say we tried some tortilla substitutes, like maybe a piece of lettuce that we would try to fill with fajitas and call it a taco, but it really wasn’t the same.

So I’ve always enjoyed cooking. And I was feeling better following a grain free diet, and getting creative in the kitchen. But again, we needed that tortilla substitute. So I got into the kitchen, and developed what was our first product, which is the almond flour tortilla. And I let my family taste it, and they liked it. And it just kind of became a thing that every weekend, my mom and I were getting in the kitchen and making them for myself and my family.

And years later, my younger brother, Miguel, suggested that we give it a go and ty to get this product out to as many people as possible. Because I was getting requests from outside the city I was living in. People were finding out about the tortillas that I was making. And I started realizing that there were a lot of people out there that could benefit from them the same way me and my family did. So that’s when we launched in 2014.

Juli Bauer: And was it just that you wanted to give more people the product? Was that the main goal? Or were you like; we should make this a real business. What was the first and foremost? Because this business has grown so much since then. Was the intention really to create a huge business around it? Or just get it out to people in Austin?

Veronica: I mean, initially it was just, I knew we had something special and there were probably some people out there that could benefit from it. I didn’t really know the scope of how many people that could be. So I don’t know if that answers your question.

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Miguel: I was thinking more; how could we be friends with Juli Bauer?

Veronica: {laughs}

Juli Bauer: {laughs}

Miguel: Let’s freaking sell some tortillas. That’s how we’ll do it.

Juli Bauer: And then we became best friends, with BFF necklaces.

Veronica: Uh-huh.

Juli Bauer: The best. So you guys came out with your almond flour tortillas to start. So then how quickly did you come out with more products?

Veronica: Oh. My brother is going to have to respond to some of these questions. He’s got a great brain for timelines, and my brain is a little bit foggy with that.

Miguel: We came out with another tortilla about, let me think.

Veronica: A year a half?

Miguel: A year and a half. Yeah, a year and a half later after the first product, which was the almond flour tortilla.

Juli Bauer: And that was the cassava coconut?

Miguel: Yeah. Cassava coconut with pastured pork lard.

Veronica: That’s your favorite, right?

Juli Bauer: Yeah. That is my absolute favorite. They’re the best. And then you guys did your chia; is it cassava and chia seeds?

Veronica: Yeah. That was probably about 6 months after that. And then in January we launched a line of cassava based grain free tortilla chips, sea salt, lime, and nacho flavor.

Juli Bauer: And what made you go with cassava versus almond flour for the tortilla chips?

Veronica: So, I guess there’s multiple answers to that. I had just become in love with cassava. And what you could do with it. Also, we were frying the tortilla chips, and I wasn’t too excited about the idea of frying a nut. We had just started using it for two of our other tortillas, and it seemed like; you know, it just tasted good when I tried it out.

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Veronica: It didn’t really take much thought beyond that.

Juli Bauer: So this became like a full-on family business. How many of you guys are in your family that are in the business at this point?

Veronica: There’s 7 of us in the family.

Juli Bauer: Oh, Siete! That’s so weird.

Veronica: {laughing}

Miguel: {laughs}

Juli Bauer: {laughs}

Veronica: Seven in Spanish. Five siblings and my two parents. And there are 6 out of the 7 now working for Siete full time.

Juli Bauer: Ok, cool. So everybody had their other fulltime jobs, and they started kind of working slowly into the family business? Or was it like, f*ck this other job, I’m going with my family so we can hang out and make delicious food every day.

Veronica: Well that’s kind of what I said when I left my job. Exactly what you said. {laughs}

Juli Bauer: {laughs}

Veronica: So it started small. Initially, when we launched the business, we were working out of a commercial kitchen in Austin that we were renting basically by the hour. And we could only rent on weekends and in the evenings. So I was living in Laredo, my parents were living in Laredo, Texas. And my brother, Miguel, was living in Austin. And we decided to rent a kitchen in Austin. It was a certified, gluten free facility, and we felt comfortable making our products out of there.

So we were basically just traveling back and forth on the weekends. We would leave Laredo, come up to Austin, and make tortillas out of that kitchen. And it kind of grew from there to where we could no longer just operate on weekends and evenings. So I, at that point, had to leave my job in Laredo to pretty much practically move up to Austin to be in the kitchen full time. So it was myself, my brother Miguel, and my parents who were hand pressing the tortillas. And at the start, it was me and my brother who came on full time. And then slowly as we grew, we started needing to fill more positions. And we had 7 members in my family that were basically available and willing. So they all came on slowly, took on different roles as we needed them.

Juli Bauer: And to me, starting a food business is so; I would have no idea where to start. How did you find the ingredients, where to source these ingredients, at such a large scale? Especially when you go, you’re putting chips into so many different stores. How are you able to source such high-quality ingredients, like avocado oil? Where did you guys even learn; how did you figure this out?

Veronica: So at first it was just, looking online. So we started buying 25-pound boxes of almond flour. The same way with cassava. And then we hired some really smart people who could help us source ingredients. I’ll mention her right now; Erica. {laughs} She’d probably be the best person to answer these questions. Because she’s our official, I guess director of operations and she sources all our ingredients.

But it’s just been her, really, helping us out. Because I was on the same boat, at first. It was, how the hell do we start a food business? And we just kind of learned along the way.

Juli Bauer: Yeah. What were some of the main issues you ran into when you were just getting this business off the ground?

Miguel: I think; so the question that you asked previously, I think it kind of dovetails into this. So good job to you writing questions that the answers kind of dovetail into each other.

Juli Bauer: Oh, thank you. Thank you. {laughs}

Miguel: {laughs} So, it’s daunting when you look at any business, period. And a food business definitely has its complexities and regulations and that sort of stuff. I think that we compartmentalize a lot of things, and we solved problems as we went along. So if you start the business wondering, how am I going to service 400 Whole Foods? You’re missing the details that are right in front of you at the moment. So it’s a gradual but very steep learning curve.

So when we’re looking at problems; sourcing is definitely one of them. We’ve had rancid almond flour. We’ve had; you know, you have all sorts of issues, like making sure that the product is the same from batch to batch. You have to hire people to help you make the tortillas. And you have to; there’s problems even as you try and grow relationships with stores. So I think I could probably point to a whole bunch of issues that we’ve run into along the way. But like my sister said, we’ve been able to really bring really smart people on as part of the team. And people that really weren’t even in the food business, but they’re just exceptionally smart people.

Kind of like you and your blog and your podcast and what you’ve been able to grow. You kind of just figure it out, because it’s either you figure it out or you don’t put food on the table. So having that.

Juli Bauer: Yeah. Have you had any situations where you’re like; this is a huge mistake. Whether it was the food didn’t come out correctly, or food was sent back because maybe it had gone bad. Did you have any huge issues like that as you were just really getting a feel for everything?

Miguel: Yeah. There was one night that I think we can all remember where we bought; we were making everything at night in a commercial kitchen. At night, and on weekends. So we had, maybe about 1000 pounds of almond flour come into the commercial kitchen. And we were about halfway through one of the evenings, like a Friday evening. And it smelled rancid. And it tasted rancid. And we had to make product to put it on the shelf. Because being out of stock is one of the crappiest things to do as a company. And so we didn’t want there to be an out of stock because of us. But the integrity of our product is of the most importance.

So I remember all of us smelling the flour, and then tasting it, and then smelling the finished tortillas. And we were like, is it rancid or have we just been making tortillas for so long that now we’re just making this stuff up? And we just had to throw away like 1000 pounds of almond flour.

Juli Bauer: Oh my god, that’s awful.

Miguel: And wasted the whole evening that we had spent making tortillas. And those things kind of just happen. And you hope that they don’t, but that’s one of the things about food. Food goes bad. Especially when you’re trying to make food with no preservatives and no junk in them. It goes bad. So these almonds; they were rancid. So at that point, we had a really good partnership with that almond supplier, and they were able to get us new almond flour, but it took a couple of days and so it sets you back.

And at the moment, I think at every moment you’re like; that’s it. This is the thing. This is the thing that’s going to put us out of business and we’re done. Why are we even doing this? Let’s just go back to our old jobs where it felt safe and secure. So I think that happens a lot. But that’s a moment that I can remember. And cutting into all the boxes of almond flour, and being like; dammit. They’re all rancid.

Veronica: Yeah. I think, though, running the business with integrity definitely helps to minimize how big of a mistake that could be. Because I guess other people could have said; oh well. Let’s see if other people can taste what we’re tasting. Let’s just cross our fingers and hope that they don’t. But we just decided, we have to throw this away because this is not a good product for people to taste.

Juli Bauer: That’s awful. I feel like whenever you’re making big batches; at least I’m like, when you smell milk, and you’re like; does milk just smell like that, or does it just smell weird to me? {laughs} That’s what I would have been like. Oh, let’s just ship it out. It’s fine. It’s fine. {laughs}

Veronica: {laughs}

Miguel: {laughs}

Juli Bauer: So with all the products that you’ve come out with, when you started your business were you thinking long-term. Like, ok we want to do tortillas, and we want to do chips, and then we want to do C, D, E. Or have you just, slowly as it’s grown and you’ve seen this business take off in more ways; are you then starting to add layers to that brand. Or have you been thinking about; ok we want to do this next, and this next, from the beginning?

Veronica: So when we started, I’d say me personally I do have lots of recipes of things that I think could fit into our product offerings. But initially, I would say I was really just thinking tortilla, for probably the first 9 months to a year. All you could think about was just launching that one product, and making sure that you could get enough of it, and get it on shelves, and people would want to buy it. But probably about a year into the business we really sat down and thought about what we stand for and what we want to do, where we want to go. And at that point, we did start to line up additional product offerings and sort of a timeline for when we want to put out those products.

But a lot of it really has been; like with the chips. We started seeing; customers were saying, “Hey; I take your tortillas and I fry them up in some oil. And now I have chips that I can eat.” So a lot of the stuff still comes from customer needs and wants.

Miguel: Yeah. I just wanted to add to that; I think it’s easy when you’re growing a business or even starting a business to get distracted by saying; like from day one we’ve never started a food business and we start claiming that we’re going to have 7 different product lines. And we have this 10-year road map and all of this stuff. If there’s anybody out there that’s trying to start any sort of food company, I think the biggest thing is get a product out there, get it on the shelf, see if people like it before you start thinking about how big the thing can be. Because, I don’t know. I feel like you could have a 10-year plan, but if product number one does horribly, there’s not going to be 10 years.

Juli Bauer: Yeah. I think that’s a great recommendation. I think people think that you guys pay me, because I talk about your products so much. Because I’m absolutely obsessed with them. But the chips are seriously a game changer. Because if you’re a person who likes chips in general, but you came from a background where you ate corn tortilla chips on a regular basis, or you just really enjoy that because you’re a normal human being, these chips are life changing. And we have them in our house constantly, and we buy them constantly.

So when I post about them, I think the main gripe that you see people; and I’m sure you get emails about this all the time. Because we’ve talked about some funny emails that we both have received. But I think the main gripe that people have is that they’re more expensive. But I don’t think people quite understand that; no sh*t it’s going to be more expensive. Because you’re using high quality ingredients; unlike most of the tortilla chip brands that are out there that aren’t sourced from the best ingredients.

So can you talk a little bit about why you use the certain ingredients you use? You use avocado oil, which is more expensive than all the other sh*ttier oils out there. So why did you choose to use certain ingredients, and not give into the price push that people constantly put out there whenever you talk about your chips. Or I talk about your chips.

Veronica: Mm-hmm.

Miguel: I definitely think for us; I didn’t really buy tortilla chips. I buy our product at Whole Foods. And people will laugh at me at Whole Foods when I go buy our chips. But I like our chips that we make and so I want to be a proud customer of the company that we’re running. So I didn’t buy chips before, because there wasn’t anything that fit. Like on the tortilla chip side. Because I break out on my forehead if I have corn. I don’t know why I break out, but I do. So I’d rather not break out.

I think on the potato chip side, I really enjoyed what Jackson’s was doing. So if I ever bought chips, I was buying the Jackson’s potato chips, fried in coconut oil. And I think that that is telling of why we use the ingredients that we do. It’s because we’re not trying to build products that hopefully the masses will love and that we’ll be able to sell a lot of. Really what we’re trying to do is put products out there that weren’t available for people to live within their dietary restrictions.

Like a lot of people don’t eat high oleic sunflower oil, or canola oil. I personally don’t. So if I don’t, what are the options? And it does become more expensive. And I think that’s important. Our goal isn’t to be the most expensive of any product or any category offering. The goal is to find really good ingredients, that we would want to eat, and that we would want to buy. We have an internal rule. If we wouldn’t want to buy the product off the shelf, then we shouldn’t sell it. Because we need to stand for something.

Juli Bauer: Well I love that. Because I think so many people will turn to canola oil or sunflower oil. And to see products coming out; and more products are coming out with avocado oil. It’s such a big thing for so many people.

I know that people have asked this. I wanted to ask this question. You are not made in a gluten free; completely gluten free facility. Is that your goal at some point to be totally gluten free, or is that not huge on your agenda for your chips?

Veronica: We actually are made; all of our products are made in a gluten free facility.

Juli Bauer: Ok.

Miguel: Our packaging needs and update on that, and we’re moving to a facility that will be entirely gluten and grain free. It’s definitely a priority for us. And so much so that we do test every run of our products as per the gluten; what is it. The gluten intolerance group, or the gluten intolerance organization. They have the GFCO mandates, and your testing parts per million. So we test, and it’s something that’s very serious for us.

Because we understand what that means as consumers as well. We’re not trying to dupe anybody at all. We are still a pretty young company. We’re 3.5 years old. But we try and be our own customer as much as possible. So we definitely are moving towards being in an entirely; there is no flour or corn coming near the facility at all.

Juli Bauer: Ok, good to know. I think people will love to hear about that. Because I saw a couple of questions about that. So let’s talk about your flavors that you have for your chips. So you have just the original, like sea salt. Which is delicious. You have lime, which is my favorite. And then you have nacho. Which I feel like is many people’s favorite, and they always talk about that. What are your favorites, personally?

Veronica: So if we’re talking about chips, my favorite is nacho. And I think that’s because; I mean, when I was growing up, I wasn’t eating the best food. And I grew up loving things like Doritos. So when I developed the nacho flavor, I think I really had that flavor in mind. So yeah, nacho. I’m a nacho girl.

Juli Bauer: I like it.

Miguel: I like nacho, period. And the tortillas, whatever works and whatever is in my fridge. I’m not picky.

Juli Bauer: Yeah. I’m the same way with them. With the tortillas. So, do you guys plan; and I know obviously you have to keep sh*t secret because there are stealers out there. But do you guys plan to come up with more chip flavors? And this was a question by a reader on my Instagram. And she mentioned jalapeno; which got me thinking that you guys should come out with a margarita mix line, and make a jalapeno margarita. And that’s pretty much just for me because that’s what I want. Ok? Ok?

Veronica: That would definitely be a pivot. But we’ll consider it. {laughs}

Juli Bauer: OK. Just think about that. Just think it over, let it mill. But do you guys have plans to come out with more flavors in your chips?

Miguel: Yeah. I would say that we have plans. This is going to be my politician answer.

Juli Bauer: {laughs}

Miguel: We have plans to continue growing our company and to continue listening to the consumer and to continue to innovate within the parameters of being a grain-free Mexican-American food brand. So I would say there will be continued innovation. And that when we have it, the people will hear about it. And that kind of goes back to; it doesn’t go back to the previous question, but it’s this idea that we are trying our best to continue to grow and have product offerings that meet people’s standards.

So the gluten free; are we an entirely gluten free facility. Right now, we’re partitioned off, and we’re in a section that is entirely gluten free. And our goal within the next few months is to be in an entirely separate facility just for us. So we’re always working towards having more product offerings, and meeting the consumer demand.

Veronica: Yeah, but I’ll add to that. So we really see potential to be Mexican-American food brand for I guess the natural food space. And so the stuff that we make will be heritage inspired. I guess healthier Mexican-American food. I’m going to add the hyphen to it, because it’s not authentic Mexican food. So really, if we think there’s potential to innovate in any particular category or product, we can make it healthier, better, and it’s heritage inspired, then that’s something we’ll be looking into in the next few years.

Juli Bauer: Ok, sweet.

Veronica: So think Mexican food. You won’t see us trying to make pizza crust or pasta, like our friends at Capello’s. Because that’s not at least our heritage inspired.

Juli Bauer: Yeah. And will you guys talk about where you are available right now for people who are still trying to find your brand, or are just hearing about it. Where are you available? What grocery stores? Are you available internationally? Are you trying to go internationally? Tell us the deets.

Miguel: Currently available nationwide at Whole Foods. Available at Natural Grocers. We’re available in some Wegman’s. Tortillas are available in HEB here in Texas. West coast you’re looking at the natural markets; Erewhon, Lassens, Lazy Acres. Some Bristol Farms. New Seasons Market. PCC.

Veronica: Earth Fare.

Miguel: Earth Fare in the southeast. And some other stores up in New York. So yeah, that’s kind of the run down right now. Our store locator has most of the updated store listings. I will say that if there is a store that doesn’t carry us, and you feel like it should, and that you would want to buy us there. It really does help when you request us at the store.

Juli Bauer: Good to know. That’s what I always tell people if they don’t see something. Not just Siete Foods. But if they don’t see a product they want, to ask. And put the word out there. Because that’s going to be huge for that company. If a couple of people ask that, that’s going to be heard throughout the store and really get pushed. So I always tell people to do that.

Veronica: Mm-hmm.

Juli Bauer: OK. Let’s get into some questions from readers. I really loved this question, because I didn’t even know the answer myself, and I’ve known you guys for years now. This was from Monica, and she said, “I’m a sucker for great design. Where did Siete Food creators find the inspiration for their logo?”

Veronica: Juli, I thought we were besties. How do you not know this?

Juli Bauer: I know. Well here’s the thing; you guys have probably told me 40 times, and I still forget because I’m literally the worst.

Veronica: {laughs}

Juli Bauer: So. I think people should know, what’s so cool about your Austin office, is it’s like in two different houses, and everything is painted in bright colors just like your logo. So you’ve really taken your logo inspiration and pulled it throughout. Not only are the rugs in the offices bright, but the kitchen is super bright. It’s just so cool. So I need the actual background. {laughs}

Veronica: Ok. So our last name is Garza. And that means Heron in Spanish. So Heron bird. So our logo is literally our last name. It’s a Heron bird.

Juli Bauer: Mmm. Ok. And then what made you do all the colors? How did you find the color scheme? Did somebody; who made the logo for you?

Miguel: We chatted with a designer, and she’s really talented. And basically we told her the story. So it’s not just that it’s a heron, but it’s a heron design with papel picado.

Veronica: Sort of looking like a phoenix.

Miguel: Yeah. So the wings are supposed to be a rising phoenix. Because the story is really one of triumph for my sister and for the people that now get to enjoy tortillas and chips who maybe couldn’t before.

Juli Bauer: Aw, I love that. That’s adorable you guys! You guys are adorable.

Veronica: {laughs} Thanks.

Miguel: Appreciate it.

Juli Bauer: Thanks. Get all awkward turtle on me. Ok, so let’s get another listener question. Ruby said, “When did they know that their product was going to take off?”

Veronica: Have we taken off?

Juli Bauer: F*ck yeah, you’ve taken off!

Veronica: Are we there?

Miguel: I would say; yeah. I think that’s always our answer. That it’s not a destination or that it’s taking off. I think that we’re able to share product with people across the country. And that the answer to, when did we know that it had taken off? I’m not sure that we do. Because we have pretty large aspirations. But since the beginning, when you get to read emails from people who tell you that they had a life changing experience because they could now eat tacos again. I think we knew we were onto something there. And then my kissing ass answer is going to be when you first posted about us.

Veronica: Yep.

Juli Bauer: {laughing}

Miguel: {laughs}

Juli Bauer: That was a long-ass time ago, when you had a different name of your company and you were just packaging it out of your house, like in plastic bags.

Miguel: {laughing}

Veronica: {laughing} Not out of our house, that would have been illegal.

Juli Bauer: Ok, ok. Sorry. Sorry, you’re about to get sued, f*ck. All because of this podcast.

Veronica: I’ll actually add to that. I did have a moment a few months ago where it just kind of dawned on me how much people are enjoying these products. I was in DC. My niece recently started school at Georgetown, and I had taken her up to DC for a parent’s weekend sort of thing. And we were actually visiting American University with a friend of hers that was also going to start there in the fall. And I was walking on the American University campus, I think it was a weekend. Like a Saturday, so it was kind of dead. But we’re in this random area of the university, and this group of like 5 freshman girls are crossing the street, and in one hand this girl is carrying a bag of Siete chips. And they’re not in a Whole Foods bag or anything, they’re just in her hands. And I was thinking, that’s so crazy. I’m across the country. I’m in DC. And there’s this random girl just crossing the street with a bag of Siete chips.

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Veronica: It really hit me at that moment. I was really grateful and humbled, but it was exciting. Actually it’s a funny story. I actually got kind of star struck; {laughs}, like the way you would feel seeing a celebrity. So I ran up to this poor little freshman girl. And I’m like; hey! You with the chips.

Juli Bauer: {laughing}

Veronica: So she turns around, and she’s like; me? And I said, yeah, yeah! I couldn’t think of what to say, so I told her something like, I make those! {laughs} And she looked at me kind of confused. She saw I was wearing a Siete shirt. And she was like, oh yeah, you’re even wearing the shirt.

Juli Bauer: {laughing}

Veronica: And that was it. She just walked into her dorm room, and I was like; ok, thanks. And I ran off embarrassed that I had said that. But I realized later that she probably didn’t get what I meant. {laughing}

Juli Bauer: Yeah. She was like; oh, cool, you have a sweatshirt. {laughing}

Veronica: Yeah. {laughs}

Juli Bauer: Which I’m wearing my Siete sweatshirt right now. Is that weird?

Veronica: Awesome. Is it still cold over there right now?

Juli Bauer: No, it’s like up to 60 degrees now.

Veronica: Oh man. We saw all of this snow when we were on our way out the other day. And I guess we should explain; my mom and I were out at a gluten free fair this past weekend. So we got to run into Juli a couple of times. And when we were leaving, it had been in the 80s while we were there. And the day that we were leaving, it was snowing. Which is exciting for us, because we live in Texas and we never see snow.

Juli Bauer: I know. But it’s just so cold. My dog loved it. But I was over the snow as soon as it hit the ground.

Veronica: {laughs} Yeah, well it was over just as soon, I guess.

Juli Bauer: I know, it’s so true. I can’t complain. Ok. So, this kind of backs off that last question. It’s a little bit of a segue. So, this is from Kayla. And you kind of answered this. So she asks, “As a small business owner, I’d love to know how they were able to gain so much popularity in what seems like a short period of time. And lastly, how many times did it take the owner to create the final grain-free tortilla recipe.”

So let’s start with the first. Well, no. Let’s start with the second one. Let’s talk about first how many times it took you, Veronica, to come up with this recipe. For the first almond flour tortilla.

Veronica: I wish I could tell you how many times. But it just evolved. So I first made that tortilla in 2010 I think. So I guess I’ve been perfecting it for, I wouldn’t say 7 years because now what we’re selling has been that way for at least a couple of years.

Miguel: She’s lying. She’s obsessive.

Veronica: {laughing}

Miguel: She still works on the recipe.

Veronica: Yeah, ok.

Juli Bauer: Does she really?

Miguel: Yeah. She’s a perfectionist. I think that there are probably hundreds of iterations that she’s gone through. And she won’t probably admit to that, but it’s a process developing it. And I think we’re so committed to the consumer, that we’re never satisfied. And we want to continue pushing to make a better product and better recipe.

Veronica: That’s true, yeah. I would say if you’re asking about all of our products, I am always monitoring what’s being produced. We do monitor customer feedback. If I feel like there’s a way to make our products better, it really is always on the back of my mind. {laughs} Sometimes I go to sleep thinking about, “Huh what if I did this? Or what if I did that?” So.

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Veronica: I guess it is still a work in progress. Although I think what we have on the shelf is pretty good right now.

Juli Bauer: What’s the main feedback of changes that people have asked for in the past that you have kind of modified the recipe because of them? Has there been anything that you took to heart.

Miguel: Yeah, I don’t know if it’s changes that have been requested, but maybe feedback of, I don’t know, there might be somebody that will say, hey it was really dry. So you’re like; oh, why was it really dry? So you’re modifying certain things that fit within the recipe parameters for something like that.

Veronica: Well I can give you an example. So maybe something like initially someone might have said; I tried to cook the tortilla and it fell apart. So, we don’t have any gluten in our products, so that’s always an issue that we’re going to deal with. We have to work around. So when we started getting that feedback, I realized there were some things we could do in our production to, I guess, so that wouldn’t happen anymore. So that’s one example.

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Veronica: So little changes you can make in the process.

Miguel: It’s constant trying to make what you have better.

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Miguel: She started in 2010, we didn’t have a company until 2014. So you can imagine there were many weekends with almond flour on her apron, working on another iteration.

Juli Bauer: Yeah, for sure. And what; I feel like Siete, it went from a great brand to a huge brand. That’s how I really see it. Because I see you guys everywhere I am in the store, which is really awesome. So how were you able to gain so much popularity? That was part of Kayla’s question, in a short period of time. And maybe it doesn’t feel like a short period of time, it just as the consumer it does. It just feels like you guys exploded. So did you ever take on investors so you could really kind of rebrand and expand more? What really pushed you to the forefront in getting out into more stores?

Miguel: I don’t necessarily think there was any one thing like that. Actually no. When we started in a food coop, we were in Wheatsville Food Co-op. I always love to give them a shout out because they took a chance on putting our products on the shelves, and were kind of the catalyst for the whole company. But when we got to Whole Foods in February 2015, and just in one store and then two stores then 5 stores. That retail partner has been instrumental for us as we continue to grow.

In 2015, we did do a small friends and family angel investment round in order for us to buy equipment to produce more tortillas at the time. But as far as that being the catalyst; I really think that what we’ve done is we’ve just tried to authentically share our story. And invite people into telling their own Siete story. And we’ve tried to, as best we can, provide the best customer service that we could. And really, to invite people into the family so that they feel good about supporting the brand. And then along the way, we’ve been able to again partner with great retail partners and continue to get people to try the tortillas and the chips.

So I don’t know; I look at other brands and I think they’re immensely more successful and popular than us. Because we’re kind of in a bubble here in Austin, in our office, and everybody is just always hard at work. So it’s humbling that somebody would say that at all. But I think it’s been a combination of factors. And a lot of being blessed; and I think that’s the most humbling part. Because we work really hard, and we have a really great team. And there are 6 out of the 7 of us working full time. My wife now works with us. So there’s a lot of people working really hard to share the message.

But I would really say that we’ve just been in a blesses position and we’ve been able to share the story authentically. And the people that follow you and are trying to live a certain lifestyle that we’ve benefited from their excitement. And we’re immensely humbled by that, and we don’t take it lightly. And we see it as a responsibility to continue creating products that can be life changing for people.

Veronica: Yeah. I think that’s a big part of it. We started out of a need to solve a problem for myself, and my family came together to help me do that. So any time we put out a product, it’s not like; oh, I see this void in the market let’s try to make a product that can fill that void. It’s really just been solve a problem for ourselves, and surely there are more people out there that we’ll be solving the problem for, as well in the process.

Juli Bauer: That’s awesome guys. Would you say you’re #blessed?

Veronica: Yes.

Miguel: Yes.

Juli Bauer: Yes! Yes. So before I let you guys go, I wish everyone could see your office. Because your office is so cool. You have this garage gym space. You have multiple offices. It’s very open and bright. And it’s just such a cool space. And you have this beautiful giant kitchen. And last time I was out in Austin hanging out with you guys, you had this huge dinner where you guys all cooked and had this amazing food. And it was all so good. And I gave myself a stomach ache because I couldn’t stop eating and drinking. And it was so awesome.

So that’s what I imagine your daily life to be like, but it’s obviously not. You’re not having dinners quite that big every single day. But do you guys; since you have this huge kitchen, and you’re obviously probably coming up with new recipes and testing new things. Can you just kind of talk through what your daily day at the office looks like? Whether that’s breakfast all together. Or you’re all working in separate offices. What does a day look like at the Siete foods office?

Veronica: Mm-hmm. Well we actually do have breakfast all together very often. My mom is one of the members of the family that works for the company, and she literally; she is a mom for the whole office.

Juli Bauer: And me. {laughs}

Veronica: Yeah, yeah. And you. She loves you.

Miguel: {laughs}

Veronica: She really, really loves you.

Juli Bauer: She’s the best.

Veronica: So she’s making breakfast at least a few days out of the week, so we all get to partake in that. And for me, personally I do spend a lot of time in the kitchen. That’s my main role with Siete, to develop new products. So I am in there often working on new stuff or tweaking old stuff. The rest of us; my brother can probably add a little bit to that.

Miguel: Yeah. So I would say;

Veronica: Sorry. Our computer is making noise.

Miguel: My wife is currently texting me via the Mac that I’m doing this podcast on.

Veronica: And she’s staring into the window making funny faces at us while we’re in here talking to you.

Juli Bauer: {laughing}

Miguel: So, I would say that I wake up. I’m obsessed with company that we have right now, and I basically live at the office. And now I benefit from my wife working with me now, also. So I can never work too much, because then I’m really just spending more time with my wife, Alex.

Juli Bauer: That’s pretty rad.

Miguel: So it’s pretty awesome. I wake up, get to the office early. I shower at the office. And then, I think most business owners would say; I think one of my jobs is to kind of address any issues that we have that day. And I think as you’re growing and you’re trying to grow quickly, you’re going to have problems arise. And so I’m here at the office all day trying to work with the team to plan for whether it’s new products or new retailers or new production requirements. And then putting out any issues. People will say putting out fires. Which I used to think was kind of silly, but it takes up a good chunk of the day, because in business, things happen. And you’re just always working to address those issues.

We all workout together at like 5:30 and go home, make dinner, and get back at it the next day. But I’m actually at the office 6 or 7 days out of the week. But mainly because we have cold brew here at the office. So I get to get free coffee. And I’m all about it.

Juli Bauer: Heck yeah. If I ever moved to Austin, can I come over to get free coffee?

Veronica: Every day.

Miguel: Yes.

Juli Bauer: Every single day.

Miguel: Only if you give us a boot camp by coach Ju.

Juli Bauer: Ok, deal. You got it. I’ll come over and we’ll all workout together. And then work together.

Miguel: I hadn’t done the Bulgarian split squat at high rep ranges, and then when you had us do them, I felt like my shorts were just fitting a little tighter around the glute area.

Juli Bauer: {laughing}

Miguel: {laughs} So, yeah. I’m all about boot camp by coach JuJu.

Juli Bauer: Ok, sweet. I’m there for you. If I move to Austin, I will be in the office every day. And we’ll drink coffee. I’ll have morning breakfast with you guys. We’ll workout together. And I’ll get my free coffee. And work in your office. Is that totally cool?

Veronica: Yeah.

Miguel: That’s totally cool.

Juli Bauer: Ok. So before I let you guys go, right now, what do you use the product. And it can be chips, it can be tortillas. What recipes are you making the most? Because for me, I have been dipping your chips. So this isn’t a recipe, like at all. But I’ve been dipping your chips into Kite Hill jalapeno cream cheese, and then salsa, and it is ridiculously good.

Miguel: I’m all about it. I’m all about it with you. The freaking jalapeno cream cheese thing is; me and, we haven’t been able to find it here.

Veronica: I don’t think I’ve had it. No.

Juli Bauer: It’s not on shelves yet. I think they’re having a hard time getting it onto shelves; the jalapeno.

Miguel: We found it; I think we found it at a co-op or something at some point. We haven’t found it since. But it was gone through lunchtime. But I’m not; I’ll have a different response than my sister. I’ll let her respond first. I just wanted to jump in on that. Give you the kind of over the podcast high-five.

Juli Bauer: Yes!

Veronica: {laughs} So, we literally. Or at least I literally use at least one of our products with every meal I eat. And sometimes it’s pretty simple. Last night my mom made nachos for dinner. So that’s what I ate. I think I ate that also twice last week. I often will use the tortillas to make sandwiches. So tortilla sandwiches I’ll call them, so just throw some ham and cheese and some avocado and lettuce and mustard in there. I’m actually pretty simple with the way I use the tortillas. But definitely every meal I’m either having chips or tortillas.

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Veronica: Oh; so a snack. I take our nacho chips, and I add hot sauce to them, usually some Yellow Bird. Are you familiar with Yellow Bird?

Juli Bauer: No. I don’t think so.

Veronica: Ok, you have to get some. It’s delicious.

Juli Bauer: Wait, is that a sauce?

Veronica: Yes.

Miguel: Yeah.

Juli Bauer: Yes, ok.

Veronica: Like a siracha bottle.

Juli Bauer: Yes, yes I do have them.

Veronica: Yeah, it’s delicious. So take that, add some Yellow Bird sauce to the nacho chips, and then squeeze some lime juice on them, and that’s like the perfect snack.

Juli Bauer: Yum. Well, something I told Miguel that you guys needed to try. I came out with for people who, if they ever come to my site I have all kinds of different recipes with your products, because I love them so much. But I have a taco casserole that I made recently with, it’s like a lasagna so it’s just layered tortillas in this amazing mixture, and it creates this casserole. So I highly recommend; you should try it Veronica. Just test it out.

Veronica: I will.

Juli Bauer: If I get your blessing, then I’ll feel #blessed as well.

Miguel: {laughs}

Veronica: Ok. {laughs} I’ll try it. I’ll look for it.

Miguel: I’m going to run through my quick; because I’m super hungry and I haven’t had lunch.

Juli Bauer: I am too. {laughs}

Miguel: Sear a ribeye steak on the cast iron. I cook it to medium rare. I slice it thinly. I heat up a cassava coconut tortilla. I throw the thin strips on the tortilla. I chop up onion. I put the onion on there. I chop up some cilantro. And I also use the Yellow Bird, the habanero. I put a drizzle of that on top with some lime juice. And I think that’s been my dinner; at least the past three weeks at least 8 to 9 of the times, that’s what I’ve eaten for dinner. And it is delicious. I think you could do it with sirloin steak, also. But the ribeye just has the fat on there that makes it amazing.

Veronica: Can you tell everybody how you heat up the tortillas? Because we have a best method, we think, that I think everybody should try. And you might do it like this, Juli, based on your Instagram photos.

Miguel: Yeah, so gas stove top, right onto the gas stove top. But I’m not a fire professional or a fire fighter. So I’m not making that recommendation.

Juli Bauer: {laughs}

Miguel: But I am saying that I put the tortilla right onto the gas griddle top. Like open flame, basically.

Juli Bauer: That’s what I do.

Miguel: Heat it up like that, and then I just flip it with my fingers. Again, not making that recommendation.

Veronica: {laughs} I use tongs.

Miguel: But it gives it just the right amount of crispiness and the burn marks on it that it’s just delicious.

Veronica: That’s definitely something I want to put out there to all of Juli’s podcast listeners. If you’re going to eat any of our tortillas, I highly recommend that you heat them up sufficiently before.

Miguel: Yeah, please don’t eat them cold.

Veronica: Don’t eat cold tortillas. They’re not meant to be eaten that way. Any tortilla.

Juli Bauer: No. Gross. That’s exactly how I heat them up, as well. Unless you’re eating the tortilla chips. Those are great cold. {laughs} But the tortillas, I heat them up on the gas range as well. It’s super easy. It’s like they’re cooked in seconds.

Veronica: And then for those of you who don’t have a gas stove top at home.

Juli Bauer: That’s stupid.

Veronica: Second best way is take a cast iron skillet, heat it up sufficiently. So you want to have it between medium and high heat. Grab some water onto your hands. Throw it onto the pan. And if the water sizzles and evaporates immediately, then it’s hot enough to cook your tortilla. Never cook the tortillas; at least ours, on low heat. Because they’ll dry out and just become tostadas. So medium to high heat. And you’ll get those nice little burn marks on them, and they’ll be delicious.

Juli Bauer: Love it. And for everyone; I get this question all the time, this question drives me f*cking crazy. Oh my god I have a dog snoring on my lap right now. So, if you are like, “Where can I get Siete foods?” Even though we just talked about it. And you’re like; I don’t know where to find it in my region. Oh, don’t worry guys. You just go onto You go to the find tab, and you type in your zip code. And boom, it will spit it out right there. So next time you’re about to ask where can I find these. But I don’t know where you’re located in the world, you can find it out yourself on the world wide web.

Miguel: Boom!

Veronica: Yes. Thank you.

Juli Bauer: Boom. Put it out there.

Veronica: And we sell them, too, off of our website. So.

Juli Bauer: Yeah. Yeah. And isn’t it on Amazon too, because everything’s on Amazon? Like prescription drugs at this point?

Veronica: Our chips are on Amazon. Yeah.

Juli Bauer: There you go. Sweet. Ok, guys. Well thank you guys so much for taking the time on this lovely Wednesday to hang out with me for an hour. I’m sure you’re starving because I am too, and it’s like an hour later there. So thank you guys so much for coming on!

Veronica: Thank you Juli!

Miguel: Thank you. We enjoyed it.

Juli Bauer: So stay on the line. Everybody, don’t forget to rate, review, subscribe because that’s supposed to be very important, so I’m trying to say that more often. I’ll talk to you guys soon. Bye-bye for now.

Today on the podcast, I’m talking to Miguel and Veronica of Siete Foods. If you haven’t tried their grain-free tortillas and tortilla chips, it’s time to have your life changed. No one else makes tortillas and tortilla chips like them […] Today on the podcast, I’m talking to Miguel and Veronica of Siete Foods. If you haven’t tried their grain-free tortillas and tortilla chips, it’s time to have your life changed. No one else makes tortillas and tortilla chips like them […] PaleOMG Uncensored yes 1:04:23
Interview w/ Sarah from Broma Bakery – Episode 59: PaleOMG Uncensored Podcast Sat, 18 Nov 2017 12:55:34 +0000 4 Today on the podcast, I’m talking to the lovely and hilarious Sarah from Broma Bakery. Sarah has some of the most stunning food photos out there so she’s telling me where she gets her inspiration from, how she comes up […] Today on the podcast, I’m talking to the lovely and hilarious Sarah from Broma Bakery. Sarah has some of the most stunning food photos out there so she’s telling me where she gets her inspiration from, how she comes up with new recipes, and what projects she’s working on nowadays. Sarah will not only wow you with her creativity, but she will keep you laughing on her instagram stories!


 Support the podcast by clicking the Subscribe button on iTunes and please a review only if you love the podcast! There is enough negativity in this world, don’t spread more. I love hearing about what YOU want me to talk about so feel free to leave on comment here or on social media with topics you’d like me to cover! And don’t forget, some posts have affiliate links which I may be compensated from. This compensation helps with keeping this blog and up and running! Thank you so much for your support, you guys are amazing!


Episode 59 Transcription!

This is Juli Bauer from PaleOMG and you are listening to PaleOMG Uncensored.

Juli Bauer: Hello everyone. Welcome to another episode of PaleOMG Uncensored. You’re very lucky, today. Because I’m not just talking to myself for an hour. I actually have a lovely guest. Her name is Sarah Fennel, and she is the creator of Broma Bakery. Did I say that correctly? Broma? I was going to ask you before.

Sarah Fennel: Yeah, you did.

Juli Bauer: Ok good! {laughs} I’m like, what if it’s supposed to be pronounced a different way. I suck at pronunciation.

Sarah Fennel: Oh no, I get it all the time.

Juli Bauer: Ok.

Sarah Fennel: Hi!

Juli Bauer: Hello!

Sarah Fennel: Thank you so much for having me!

Juli Bauer: I’m so excited to have you on! I found out about you through Monique of Ambitious Kitchen. This was two years ago, probably. We were at an event together in San Francisco, and I was just complimenting her on her photography. And she mentioned you. She said she learned it all from you, and you’re such an amazing photographer. And I started following you right then and there, and have loved following you ever since.

Sarah Fennel: Oh my god, thank you so much! That means a lot. I really appreciate that.

Juli Bauer: What’s cool about you is you have this amazing, classy, beautiful photography and Instagram and blog. And then your Instagram stories you are 100% you, and you’re f*cking hilarious.

Sarah Fennel: {laughing}

Juli Bauer: You are so funny. Oh my god. And, is it your boyfriend, or husband, or life partner?

Sarah Fennel: Yeah, my boyfriend.

Juli Bauer: Ok, your boyfriend. He is so funny, too. You’re just awesome to follow.

Sarah Fennel: Oh my god, thank you. Well yeah, I really like being able to sort of less loss on stories, just because that’s how I am in real life. And I don’t want people thinking I have this amazing, glamorous, perfect life just because my photos are put together.

Juli Bauer: Yeah. Like everything in your house is all white space.

Sarah Fennel: Yes! {laughs}

Juli Bauer: And you have like cupcakes sitting on your counter every day. Which you might. You might.

Sarah Fennel: I do.

Juli Bauer: Well for everyone who doesn’t know about Broma Bakery, and Sarah Fennel, will you just give a little bit about yourself. A little background. How you started your blog. Just the full synopsis of your however many years of life. {laughs}


Sarah Fennel: Yeah, absolutely. So, I started my blog in the fall of 2010. And I was a college student. I was just really feeling unmotivated and just really uncreative at school. So I wanted to give myself some sort of creative outlet. So I decided to just start photographing baked goods. My mom was a really good home baker growing up, so I basically just took a bunch of her recipes and would make two or three a week and take photos and put it up on the internet.

But I was never doing it with the goal, really, of developing an audience and making this my career. It was totally selfish. I was doing it for myself because I missed having that creativity. And I was fortunate enough to be doing it at a time when blogging was still pretty new and the market was petty open. So I gained a good amount of traction just by sort of throwing a photo up onto the internet and not doing much else.

And then in the fall of 2014, I was working in catering and marketing for a group of restaurants at my college town. Just really not feeling motivated by life and decided to just quit and see if I could make my blog a fulltime thing. So I gave myself two months, and I said, ok if I see a lot of growth in two months then I’ll keep going with this. And if I don’t, then I’ll go find a real job.

So after two months, I did see significant growth. I wasn’t making money at that point on my blog at all, but because I was starting to see more and more people connect and make my recipes, I just kept putting time into it. And then here we are 3 years later. {laughs}

Juli Bauer: And what did you go to school for?

Sarah Fennel: Anthropology.

Juli Bauer: Ohh, ok.

Sarah Fennel: So totally unrelated.

Juli Bauer: Yeah, completely. And so what year was it that you went full time? 2012?

Sarah Fennel: 2014.

Juli Bauer: Oh, 2014. Ok. So when you decided you want to go fulltime with the blog, did you know how to monetize your blog at all, or was it just like, I think opportunities will come out of it. How did you think you would be able to make this a fulltime gig?

Sarah Fennel: Totally. I had no idea what I was doing. I remember I quit my job, and I went home, and I was really frustrated, and I was like; I’m going to try to make this work. Oh, sh*t I don’t even know what to do. So I literally Googled how to make money on a food blog. And I found really bad information online that was like, start using advertising. Reach out to brands. And I was like; ok, but how?

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Sarah Fennel: So it was very much like this self-learning process where I just really hunkered down for a solid year, and tried to learn as much as possible about food blogging. So I was in a fortunate position where I had $8,000 in the bank that I had saved. So I could not make money for a little while, and I just really cut corners that year. But for the first, I would say, 6-9 months, I did not focus on making money. I focused on really homing in on my craft and developing my skill. Because I figured, I need to have this wealth of content before I could go to brands and be like; hi, will you pay me?

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Sarah Fennel: {laughs} And I think that’s something a lot of people sort of don’t realize. I think now everybody wants things fast and quick, and everybody wants to grow and see success overnight. But I think that if you want to have a really lasting, long-term success, you need to be willing to put in work and have it be kind of hard and maybe not see a lot of gains for at least a little while.

Juli Bauer: I mean, especially if you; what I really like about your website is if you go to your recipes, you can click on the exact month and look back at every single month and the progression of all your posts. So you start in October of 2010, and then you said you don’t go fulltime until 2014. I feel like you can really see the progression of how you started concentrated on your photography even more, improving step by step. And then how many more recipes you begin to come out with.

Sarah Fennel: Yeah.

Juli Bauer: So how often do you post nowadays versus when you first started. And are you able; obviously you’re full time so you’re able to put more time into it. But do you have a certain goal, week to week, when you’re posting of how much content you come up with, and what kind of content?

Sarah Fennel: Mm-hmm. So when I was just doing it for myself, I would post whenever I felt like it at any time of the day and there was really no rhyme or reason to it. Once I went full time, I posted three times a week, and I was doing that for a while. And now I’m down to either two or three posts a week depending on the season or if I have a lot of press trips or travel things that I want to talk about. That will add in a third post.

But it’s mostly two recipes and then a third bonus, more lifestyle or travel related post. And in terms of my weekly schedule, I work a month to a month and a half out. So at the beginning of each month, I’ll sit down and I’ll plan ahead the next month, and know sort of who I’m going to be working with and the types of recipes I’m going to be doing and all that stuff. But then there’s always an occasional recipe that you’re like; oh my god I need to post this tomorrow. {laughs} And so it just works its way into the schedule.

Juli Bauer: And then you obviously; so I’ve had mostly on my podcast, since I’m in the paleo world, I’ve had mostly paleo bloggers, or gluten-free bloggers. And you use all the wonderful gluten that’s out there.

Sarah Fennel: {laughing}

Juli Bauer: {laughs} You’ve got all the fun stuff. So you are able to be so incredibly creative. And I get this question, I hear this question to food bloggers all the time. And obviously the answer is very vast. But where do you get so much of your inspiration? Because obviously you’ll do whatever it’s in season. Like you have an autumn Moscow mule right now, so you kind of go with seasonal stuff. Or maybe at a restaurant. But what gives you the most inspiration that you pull from so you can continue to cook week to week?


Sarah Fennel: Totally. Oh, god. I really feel like I get it from everywhere. I love looking at cookbooks and getting sort of my visual inspiration from there. I look a lot on Pinterest, a lot on Instagram. Really just looking around the web to see what people are enjoying then.

And I think when I develop my recipes, I always like to start from a pretty simple baseline. Like, I definitely want to make a cake. What kind of cake do I want? I want the cake to be chocolatey. So I start from this broad place, and then narrow it in from there.

And I definitely; I am not a recipe developer naturally. It’s something that I’ve really had to learn over time I rely so much on my sister, who is just so good at looking at a fridge that to me is empty and she’s like; oh we can make this three-course meal out of all of this. And that’s not something that comes as naturally to me. So it does just take a lot of time and effort. It’s a muscle that you have to build.

Juli Bauer: And do you enjoy; obviously you started as baking. Do you enjoy baking still the most, or have you kind of fallen in love more with savory recipes as you’ve become more of a recipe developer? Or even cocktails, or side dishes, or whatever.

Sarah Fennel: I think I like baking the most. I mean, baking is something that I will do regardless of if it goes on the blog or not. Even if I’m on vacation, or at someone’s house, I’m like; wait, can I make some cookies? It’s just something that’s very; I don’t know. A part of me. But I will say I have come to enjoy savory recipes, and cooking savory recipes more. I was really intimidated by cooking in the beginning. It’s so funny. So many people say baking is so unknown. But for me, baking is so technical that it’s almost like it’s laid out in front of you, whereas cooking you really have to be creative and think of all these ways to do things. So that was not as natural to me. But again, just like in time, you do it over and over and over again, and you start to think differently and think in that way.

Juli Bauer: Well I think you’ve obviously done a great job with some of your savory recipes, because they look delicious on your website.

Sarah Fennel: Thank you!

Juli Bauer: But I want to talk about your photography. Because when you come to your website, or if you go to your Instagram, you automatically are just taken aback by how beautiful the photography is, and you think you’re like; ok this person obviously knows what they’re doing. So I read a little bit on your website. You started with catering, and that’s where you kind of found your love for photography and it was able to grow from there.

So when you first found your love for taking photos of food, what kind of camera did you start with? Did you just have a little point and shoot? Did you decide to go big right away and get a nice camera? How did you start off? Because I think so many people who are aspiring photographers, they just don’t know where to start because there is so much. There are so many cameras out there and so much information, it’s a hard choice to make unless you have a close friend who is a food photographer.


Sarah Fennel: Yeah. Yeah. So when I started, I had just a Canon Rebel. And you know, it was like $250 or something like that. And it had the lens that it came with, nothing fancy. And I think when you’re starting out, of course it’s important to have a decent camera. But I think it’s more important to focus your effort on {laughs} this sounds funny, but on tweaking your mind to thinking the right way with food photography. Because unless you know sort of what you’re doing and have a grasp on more of the compositional part of food photography, I think it doesn’t really matter how good your camera is.

So for people that are just starting out, I would definitely recommend getting an SLR, which is one of those bigger cameras that has a lens poking out of it. But you can just start with the baseline level. Because also with so many things, you don’t want to have to go all in and spend thousands of dollars and realize it’s not quite for you. I think it’s totally fine to start with something that’s pretty good, and then focus more on composition, and perspective, and learning about light and things like that.

Juli Bauer: How did you begin to learn that kind of stuff? Did you learn it from another person? Did you go take classes or any courses about photography? How did you really start to improve those skills?

Sarah Fennel: I started my interest in photography back in high school. It was just, you know, like film photography on a black and white camera that we developed ourselves. So I learned about photography for four years during high school. And it was something that I really, really liked. And I think that’s one thing that I would argue sets me apart from some other food bloggers out there. I learned photography, first and foremost, from what they call the masters. Like, people that were photographing back in the turn of the century, and the 20s, and the 50s. Sort of not even thinking about how to photograph food, but just how to photograph, and how to see lines and colors and all these things that make images really strong on their own.

So learning more of those fundamental aspects I think has really helped me. Because it takes a lot of the guess work out of photography. It’s not just; oh god, here’s a muffin, what do I do with it. It’s like; ok. Here’s a muffin. I’m going to use the rule of thirds so it’s balanced out in my photo.

I strongly recommend people to buy books on the fundamentals of photography. Composition, that’s just about photography in general. And not necessarily dive right into food photography, when you’re talking about learning it.

Juli Bauer: Yeah. Interesting. I love hearing about that. I decided to take a course, because I bought a fancier camera and I just put it on automatic. So I’m like; ok, if I’m going to put f*cking good money into a camera, it’s time to actually understand what I’m doing with my camera. So I’m excited to find out just about the camera itself and really, for me, it’s learning what looks good. And what I love coming to your website for; and I’ve done this in the past, is if I’m photographing a bar recipe, I look at your bars, and I see how you photograph them, and I try to figure out why you photographed them in a certain way. Or why you used certain things in the background to balance it out.

And you’ve given some great tips just on your Instagram stories alone, I remember you talking about having a piece of white in something in your photo to kind of balance out, I’m guessing the white balance of it.

Sarah Fennel: Yeah.

Juli Bauer: And just things that I didn’t quite understand, and you just giving those little tips have gone a long way. So you’ve taught workshops, haven’t you?

Sarah Fennel: Yes. Wait I just want to pause and say, that’s so kind of you to say. It makes me so happy {laughs} that you come to my site for inspiration. So thank you.

Juli Bauer: I do! I think I am so, I don’t understand photography, and I don’t understand photos, so I try to understand from the greats out there. And you just have such beautiful photos. And it’s fun trying to learn why you set up a shot a certain way. It’s just really cool to try to figure that out and understand it. You have photography that goes back; and it’s improved so much, but still I’m looking at photos of January 2015 and the photography is still stunning 2 years ago, you know.

Sarah Fennel: Oh my god, thank you.

Juli Bauer: Yeah. It’s so cool to see it improve and change.

Sarah Fennel: Well I mean, if you go back to 2010 I don’t know if you can say the same.

Juli Bauer: Oh yeah; still it was way better than mine. {laughs}

Sarah Fennel: {laughs} So yeah, to answer your question. I’ve started doing these photo workshops, and it has been so much fun. It’s really something that I feel like I’m good at it, but also just really like being able to teach other people and see their wheels turning and see them be like; oh, ok I get it.

So, for a while I was always interested in doing tutorials on my blog. Sharing my trade secrets, like you said how I do sometimes on my Instagram stories. But I wasn’t feeling quite in a place where I felt like I had the authority to teach people. Then, I guess about 8 months ago, I felt a shift. And I was like; you know what? I get all these questions about food photography. Maybe I should monetize this. Maybe I should start teaching people.

And I didn’t want to do it in an eBook, because that feels so impersonal to me. And I think that you get so much more out of learning when you can actually physically be with someone, and sort of be working on things together, and tweaking things and talking through things. So I decided to start doing workshops. And I’ve done two now. I did one in Ann Arbor, which is where I went to college. So it was really cool. We got to go to a lot of the restaurants I used to work at, and partner with some old friends.

And then I just did one two weeks in Napa. And that was stunning. I did that one with a cohost. Which was a really fun experience, because it allowed me to, I think take a step back and she could teach and I could go over to someone and help them with their camera settings. And it was just really awesome. And the house was stunning.

Juli Bauer: How did you start setting those up? Did you work; like this one in Napa. Did you work with a certain hotel, or a brand to really bring the full experience together, or how did you get that event really going in the first place, since it was so new to you?

Sarah Fennel: Yeah. I have to credit my assistant Hilary. Basically she came on in May of this year, and she was like; Sarah, let’s do a workshop. And I was like; I don’t know. I don’t know. She was like, I’ll take care of all the logistics. Let’s do a workshop. {laughs}

So she really helped in terms of being like; ok, this is, we need to market this to people. We need to put a post out. We need to talk with a hotel. We need to do all these things. So she really was like the logistics expert. For the Ann Arbor workshop, we did partner with a hotel for people to actually stay at the hotel. But then the workshop we did at some of my friend’s; it’s like this beautiful carriage house right downtown. And they just rented it out to us for the week, which was incredible.

And then for the Napa workshop, my cohost. Actually, the house owner reached out to her directly, and was like; “I know you’ve done workshops in the past. Would you want to host a workshop at my house?” And my cohost was like, this is the most beautiful house I’ve ever seen. Yes. So that really came; you know, it dropped into our lap, which was incredible.

I’m really struggling now, because with my next workshop, it’s like; oh my god, where do we go? And it’s so hard to find a house that’s beautiful and that also sleeps like 15 people.

Juli Bauer: Yeah. Where do you live?

Sarah Fennel: I live in Detroit.

Juli Bauer: Ok. Detroit. So are you trying to do workshops all over the place in different cities every single time? So it just really depends on the city you’re going to work in. Do you want to be all over the place so you can get all kinds of different faces?

Sarah Fennel: Yes. Exactly. And I want it to be a unique experience every time. I think it’s just so fun to be able to curate this experience based on the season, based on the place that we’re in, and really work around those. I mean, I’ve been toying with the idea of doing another Ann Arbor workshop, just because it seemed like a really good spot for people to get to. With the Napa workshop, I think it was a little more difficult for people to get out to the West Coast. But yeah, I do like the idea of doing them all over.

I think eventually I want to get my own studio space so I can do more day workshops, and things like that. But for now, it’s also fun for me to be able to travel to all these places. {laughs}

Juli Bauer: Yeah. And when you’re setting up these workshops, are you thinking; ok, we’re going to go photograph our big breakfast at a certain restaurant, and then we’re going to work in studio. Do you try to take it into different elements, so they’re not just getting just the set up of an actual food photography studio?

Sarah Fennel: Yes. So, all of the workshops that I’ve done, the way that we lay it out we have classroom time, which is basically lectures, and then we have hands on time. So, pretty much everything we eat throughout the weekend, there’s an opportunity to photograph it. It’s not necessary, but it’s just a way to interact with the beautiful food that’s there for you the whole weekend.

And then during classroom time, we literally just sit in a circle and go over these; I mean, they’re lectures but it’s not boring stuff. It’s actually been the thing that people say they like the most. Which makes me so happy. Because it is like PowerPoints that we talk about. But to hear that people are excited about learning these very specific things makes me really happy.

And then when we go to restaurants; again, if you want to photograph before your food comes out, you can. Or we can just sit down and talk about how you want to grow your Instagram. Or how to reach out to brands and make it more of an open conversation.

Juli Bauer: That is so cool. Nowadays, as you’ve built your brand up and you’ve worked with more companies, do you find yourself reaching out to more companies, or do you find more brands reaching out to you? Or is it kind of just a balance of both?

Sarah Fennel: I would say a balance of both. I think a lot of people assume that just because you’re big, and you’re doing well and whatever that opportunities just come to you. And they definitely come to me more than they have in the past. And the opportunities I do get from people that come to me are fantastic. But I still do a lot of pitching. I think it’s so important not to get lazy with that. Because if I stopped reaching out to brands and just let them come to me, then I wouldn’t work with half the brands that I do. And I have these long-term contracts now because I was willing to be like; hey, this is me.

I mean, just because I have a decent Instagram following, that doesn’t mean that somebody at Chobani knows who I am. I have to make myself known to them.

Juli Bauer: Mm-hmm. That’s good to hear. Because I think; I loved what you said about this. Because I think a lot of people, especially people who listen to this podcast, they are aspiring bloggers, and they think that it just comes naturally. You just grow this huge following, and then all these businesses reach out to you and you’re golden. And it’s just kind of everything falls into place. But it takes a lot of hard work and constantly trying to grow your brand while growing your visual to brands so they want to work with you.

So I love hearing all of this, of how much work you’re putting into it. And you’re not just thinking; oh yeah, these brands will just come along. Because that’s just not how it works, sadly. I wished it did. But it’s just not how it works.

Sarah Fennel: I know. That would be a nice life. But I think, it’s so important too to make sure that you’re constantly doing things to improve on your own work. Because as soon as you stagnate, your work stagnates. And you want to be just every month thinking about ways you can get better, and what you can do to improve your brand. I strongly feel like, as long as you are continuously improving, things are going to keep coming your way. But as soon as you go on autopilot, then it’s like; who’s to say that you’re going to stay relevant?

Juli Bauer: Exactly. And it’s just like at a business, if you’re working for someone else and not working for yourself. If you’re just going through the motions, your boss is going to see that. Our bosses are the people who are reading, and they see that too. So it’s just like any business, whether you work for yourself or someone else. Someone is going to see your laziness and that you’re not putting as much effort into it. So I love that you’re continuously trying to improve.

But I want to stay on the photography a little bit more, because I’m obsessed with your photography. This is kind of a broad question; but how did you find your photography style? Because everybody has a different bit of a style. Maybe some people love using floral decorations, or some people using glass, or metals. A lot of your photos have a white background. How did you decide what your photography style was? What gives you inspiration in your own photography?

Sarah Fennel: So I would say that I found my style through a lot of trial and error. If you look back to a lot of my older stuff on my Instagram, on my blog. It was kind of all over the place. I didn’t know if I wanted to be dark and moody, or light and bright. If I wanted to have sort of a more muted look. And I really just played around with it.

So doing that over time, I noticed that every time I would photograph on white, or on a lighter surface, I liked how it looked more, and I felt like it was more me. So, it really was just trial and error.

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Sarah Fennel: But I will say; one thing that we do in the workshop. Can you hear my sister blow-drying her hair?

Juli Bauer: Not at all.

Sarah Fennel: Ok good.

Juli Bauer: {laughing}

Sarah Fennel: So one thing that we do in the workshop, which is really helpful for people, is we create these mood boards. The idea is; abandon everything that you think you know, or you think you like. Go on Pinterest, or go to whatever visual site that you really like, and start putting together your favorite photos. Don’t think about it; just do. Make it very quick and without thought.

And then after you get like 10 or 15 photos, then look at those photos all together, and see what things are coming up over and over again. Are you seeing a lot of black backgrounds? Are you seeing a lot of blue? Are you seeing a lot of hands in the shots? And from there, sort of pick out the things that you like the most, and then start to incorporate those into your work.

So when I was creating my mood board, when we did this exercise at my first workshop, mine was very comforting, but also still very bright. The photos; it was always sort of shot on a cloudy day. There was a lot of gray. And then as I moved on and photographed from that point on, it was like; ok. So I need to make sure I’m photographing on cloudy days, making sure there’s a lot of gray. Making things look comforting. And bringing in more those mood and emotional feelings into your work.

Juli Bauer: OK, that’s cool.

Sarah Fennel: Does that make sense? {laughs}

Juli Bauer: Yeah, totally does. It’s so interesting how we can all just have a completely different style of photography, but love and appreciate so much other photography. Because me, I always want it to be; I want the sun to be shining for my photos. Because I like the bright colors. I like blue backgrounds and pink backgrounds. But then I’m absolutely obsessed. And I’ve been looking at all your photos, and I’m like; ok, I need to get more white backgrounds, because I just love how that looks.

Where do you get your backgrounds from?

Sarah Fennel: So my favorite place. Well, ok when I started out I would go to the tile section at Home Depot and just get tiles. And it’s a great way to just get cheap backgrounds. You can clean them up easily. Highly recommend.

But, now my favorite place to get backgrounds is a company called Woodville Workshop. And they based in Russia. I found them randomly on Etsy like a year ago. And I decided to order one of their backdrops, and I absolutely loved it. They’re really light. They have just phenomenal texture. They have great customer service. And the prices; it’s not like $2, but it’s not as bad as some of the other things out there. I think it’s a really decent price, considering the quality that you get for their backdrops.

And let me just double check; I have a code I can give to you. It’s not even an affiliate code. I literally; I love these people so much, I reached out to them and was like; can you please give me a discount for my followers because everyone needs these backgrounds.

Juli Bauer: Yeah. You know, Lexi from Lexi’s Clean Kitchen recommended this place, too. I’ve looked for them but I haven’t actually purchased anything. So now I definitely want to after two people have recommended them.

Sarah Fennel: I love Lexi so much!

Juli Bauer: She’s so great.

Sarah Fennel: She’s the best! Ugh.

Juli Bauer: She’s really awesome.

Sarah Fennel: But yeah, definitely recommend them. And then the other place that I recommend if you want a really good marble, Crate and Barrel has this, it’s called their French Marble Pastry Slab. And it’s so f*cking heavy, but it’s this beautiful piece of white marble. And that’s something I shoot on almost every shoot. So it’s definitely worth it.

Juli Bauer: And do you just stick to mostly white backgrounds? Do you ever get any backdrops that are like dark woods or colors? Do you just like sticking with the whites and the gray colors the most?

Sarah Fennel: I think that it’s really important to differentiate between a brand style and what you appreciate and your personal style. So I shoot a lot for other clients, and because I do I have a lot of darker backdrops that I use for specific clients, or woods for specific clients. But when it comes to an individual brand, I actually think that it’s better to only have like two or three backdrops. It makes it so much easier to create a cohesive look than if you have all of these colors and different lights and darks going on.

So I would actually say; definitely experiment with things. But once you realize what you like, then I would pick two or three things and just cycle through those.

Juli Bauer: OK. Well I’m totally going to make a purchase with them today. Because I need some new inspiration.

Sarah Fennel: Yeah! They’re just so great. Yeah. {laughs}

Juli Bauer: So let’s talk about your recipes. How many recipes do you think; if you even know. How many recipes do you have on your website?

Sarah Fennel: I mean, I don’t even know. {laughs}

Juli Bauer: Yeah! I mean, starting in 2010.

Sarah Fennel: Like hundreds. Yeah.

Juli Bauer: Seriously. Easily.

Sarah Fennel: I can’t tell you. I think it’s around 400. Yeah. I mean, it’s a lot. And every year towards the end of the season, I’m like; oh my god, how am I going to think of things next year? {laughs}

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Sarah Fennel: It’s 530. That’s very cool.

Juli Bauer: That’s amazing. Yeah.

Sarah Fennel: But somehow you just think of more stuff.

Juli Bauer: Yeah. People always say that. They’re like; do you think you’ll ever run out of ideas? I’m like, no. There’s always something new. You change two ingredients, two spices, and you have a completely different dish. So the possibilities are 1000% unlimited. They’re just so completely unlimited.

So, and I always hate this question because it’s very difficult when you have that many recipes on your blog, but I think it’s always great for people to have something to look for when they first start on your blog, and they’re like; I don’t even know where to start.

Sarah Fennel: Are you going to ask what my favorites are?

Juli Bauer: Oh my god yeah!

Sarah Fennel: Oh I’m ready.

Juli Bauer: Ok. Ok good.

Sarah Fennel: {laughing}

Juli Bauer: So, top; I wanted to start with sweets. So top 3 favorite sweet recipes.

Sarah Fennel: Totally. Ok, so definitely, these are really new. Tahini chocolate chip cookies. They are just; oh my god, Juli, they’re so good.

Juli Bauer: I saw those when I was looking through your recipes.

Sarah Fennel: They’re so good. And they’re not; so tahini is just sesame seed paste. It’s like peanut butter, but for sesame seeds. And it’s not super, super strong, it’s just this little bit of nuttiness, but these cookies I tested. I’m not even joking, I think it was 15 times. It might have been 16.

Juli Bauer: Oh my god.

Sarah Fennel: Because I just, I wanted them to be perfect. And they’re so good. They’re like, just chewy. It tastes like a cookie that you’d get from a bakery. They’re amazing. And then I have a brownie recipe that is a gingersnap molasses brownie. So it’s super, super fudgy. It’s got a lot of ginger in it, so it’s really nice and punchy. And it’s just so good for fall. And then, god the third one; I’m struggling. Because…

Juli Bauer: I know. I don’t know how you even chose so far.

Sarah Fennel: Yeah. Ok, so my mom has this amazing, amazing carrot cake recipe that we’ve been making every single birthday I can ever remember. And on the site it’s called the best carrot cake in the world. And it’s this incredibly moist carrot cake that’s make with cinnamon and coconut and pineapple and raisins. Tons of carrots. It’s just so good.

Juli Bauer: Yum!

Sarah Fennel: It’s really good. Yeah.

Juli Bauer: OK, what about your three top favorite savory recipes.

Sarah Fennel: Ok, so for savory, I have this soup that my boyfriend Alex has nicknamed dope soup, because it’s dope.

Juli Bauer: {laughs}

Sarah Fennel: And on the site it’s called Thai Coconut Curry Soup.

Juli Bauer: Yum! Obsessed already.

Sarah Fennel: Oh, it’s so good. And what makes it so good is you basically boil for two hours. Just like a simmer, but the flavors just get so concentrated and it tastes like something that came out of; at least what I think, is a Thai kitchen. I really like it.

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Sarah Fennel: So definitely that. And then I have a, let me think. I’m literally looking through all my recipes right now.

Juli Bauer: I am too! {laughs}

Sarah Fennel: Yeah! {laughs} Oh, the coq au vin that I have is one of my favorites. I think with savory recipes, I really like those really sort of fall, comforting flavors. But I do; I mean, I’m not someone that loves 3 pounds of cheese or a quart of heavy cream. I like doing lightened up comfort foods. So the coq au vin is awesome. It’s with these cheesy cauliflower grits. It’s basically just grits made with cauliflower and that’s probably on rotation once a month during the cold months at our house. Love, love, love that one.

And then I would say probably this sandwich recipe that I have. That’s called the green thumb sandwich. And it’s this beautiful green veggie sandwich. It’s got an herbed goat cheese, cucumber sprouts, avocado, green peppers. It’s just so good. It’s like a garden in a sandwich. It’s so pretty, too.

Juli Bauer: Yum. What do you think are the hardest recipes to photograph? Do you have; you know you’re making a recipe, and you know; ok. This is going to suck.

Sarah Fennel: Yeah.

Juli Bauer: I get nervous with drinks. Just because the ice melts, or if you have a coffee drink, it separates from the cream. Do you have any ones that you don’t look forward to making, just because you know the photography is going to be tough?

Sarah Fennel: I’m with you on drinks.

Juli Bauer: They’re hard.

Sarah Fennel: Drinks are really hard. And it’s hard, too because it’s like a glass or a mug, so…

Juli Bauer: Reflection.

Sarah Fennel: it reflects. Yeah. So drinks for sure. And then I think probably bars. I mean, brownies I think are naturally awesome because they have chocolate. But any sort of bar recipe, a lot of times I find myself staring at it and being like; ok, you just look like a block.

Juli Bauer: Totally!

Sarah Fennel: What do I do with you?

Juli Bauer: A blob of goo.

Sarah Fennel: Yeah. I’d say probably those. I think my favorite thing to photograph is cakes. I absolutely love photographing cakes. Just because, I don’t know, naturally they have this great height. There’s usually this awesome texture to it. You can decorate it in so many ways. People just love cake. I just; yeah, I love photographing cakes.

Juli Bauer: I think people love staring at cakes, for sure. Even if they’re not going to make them.

Sarah Fennel: Right.

Juli Bauer: And I feel like most people, a lot of times when they see desserts, they’re like, I’m not even going to make that, I just want to stare at it.

Sarah Fennel: Yeah.

Juli Bauer: That’s at least how I am. I just want to stare at cakes. They’re so tall.

Sarah Fennel: I’m with you. {laughs}

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Sarah Fennel: I know, every time I make a cake, I’m like; ok I need to do something with this right now, because I’m going to eat it all.

Juli Bauer: I know! Ok that’s a great little segue. So, let’s talk about being a food blogger, especially a dessert blogger, where you’re around desserts on a regular basis. And you are in incredibly great shape. It looks like you love to do yoga.

Sarah Fennel: Oh my gosh! {laughs}

Juli Bauer: You’re in such good shape. And you always have these cute little body suits, and you’re almost high waisted jeans. And you just look fantastic. You should start sharing some of your outfits, because they’re all adorable.

Sarah Fennel: You’ve inspired me. I love how you do your outfits on your blog.

Juli Bauer: Oh! Thank you. Well you should definitely share yours, because I think people would love that. So, how do you stay in shape? And I know you’ve talked about this on your blog. I saw a post about it, where you actually talk about things that you do. But can you tell people? Because being around sugar, as we know, is very addicting. So it’s sometimes hard to shut it down. Especially when you’re making such amazing desserts, and you’re tasting as you go. So how do you keep yourself in check during these days of making multiple desserts sometimes.

Sarah Fennel: Let me tell you, it’s hard. {laughs}

Juli Bauer: Yeah! For real.

Sarah Fennel: I would say, I mean, I have a huge sweet tooth. So I need to eat dessert. It’s just something; a day is not completely unless I can have a little bit of sugar. But I think the thing that I always strive towards is making sure that I’m really careful with my proportions. Like my serving sizes. So because I’m going to be eating dessert every day, or almost every day, I make sure that I have only a small cookie. And almost by the fact that I’m making dessert every day, it makes it less of this; oh my god I need to eat this right now.

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Sarah Fennel: Because I’m like; yeah, but tomorrow I’m going to have cake. And the next day I’m going to have a brownie. So it makes it easier for me to, I guess, curb my sweet tooth. But I think the biggest thing is, at least that I’ve noticed for myself, is when I don’t allow myself that bite of brownie or that cookie, I end up usually snacking on other things even more. So I really try to really listen to myself, and my body, and what I want. And be like; ok, do I want that brownie? Ok, yeah, I’ll have that brownie. But you know what? I’m just going to cut a small piece of it. But I am going to give it to myself. And you know, by doing that I feel like it’s a good balance of giving your body what you want, but not overindulging.

Juli Bauer: And when you make your desserts. So when you made these tahini cookies, 15 f*cking times.

Sarah Fennel: I know.

Juli Bauer: You are insane. I tried muffins twice, and I was like; f*ck this I’m done. I can’t. I don’t care.

Sarah Fennel: Right! Right.

Juli Bauer: But do you usually taste as you go? Or do you fully just make the dough, maybe not even taste the dough, and just make the cookies. Because I have a hard time not tasting raw eggs {laughs} in a dessert as I go. I have a very hard time not licking the spoon.

Sarah Fennel: I know. I mean I definitely did, and I felt a little sugar high after that day. But {laughs} yeah, I really do try to limit myself. And then once the cookies are baked, I’ll have a bit of it. And limit myself to one bit. Because I know later in the day I’m going to want an actual full cookie.

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Sarah Fennel: But I do, I taste everything that I make. And I think one thing that’s really helped, too, is as I’m baking, if I know I have a lot going on that day, I’ll chew gum because it makes it so I won’t just pop stuff into my mouth as I’m going. But again, I never want to feel like I’m really limiting myself.

Juli Bauer: I’m the same way.

Sarah Fennel: It’s just trial and error.

Juli Bauer: Yeah. And I know you talked about in your post, because you talk about this in a post. You talk about drinking a lot of water, and make sure you’re eating a ton of vegetables. And that really kind of helps with that. And I do the same thing. I try to make sure I’m actually craving the sweet, and it’s not just the sugar demon taking over. So drinking that water, and making sure I’m actually satisfied before eating the dessert and just going ham on it is so important. Because sugar is not the enemy; our brain is. And that’s what will keep us so addicted.

Sarah Fennel: Yeah!

Juli Bauer: So what kind of exercise do you do?

Sarah Fennel: I do a mixture of HIIT routines; you know, like BBG and things like that. And then like a hot vinyasa yoga. So when I was living in Boston, I went to Core Power. I don’t know if you’re familiar with it; Core Power Yoga.

Juli Bauer: Yeah, we have a ton here.

Sarah Fennel: Oh, I absolutely loved them. And they have this class, it’s called yoga sculpt. And it’s basically like a weight and HIIT class with yoga transitions. And it just to me feels like the perfect workout. Because you get that cardio, but then you get your muscle training in, and then you also feel like you’re stretching with yoga and doing this sort of mind/body thing. I just absolutely love it. But in Detroit, because there is no Core Power. Which, Core Power if you’re listening, I will be your Detroit rep. I want this to happen. But I mostly wake up and I am not a morning person, and I just force myself to do a short HIIT routine. And I’ve found that I just started to crave it over time. The more I incorporated it into my routine, the more I was like; wait, I didn’t do that today. I want to do that.

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Sarah Fennel: Yeah. And then recently I’ve also done, like Monique, Ambitious Kitchen, she has this company called Healthy Glow Co, and they have some really great workouts on their site that I’ve been trying out. They have this one lower body, I think it’s called working twerking chipper. And it’s awesome. My legs are so sore every day I do that.

Juli Bauer: That’s awesome.

Sarah Fennel: Yeah. But I mean, working out is not something I’ve done my whole life. Like I did track in high school, and did dance and all this stuff. But I had a really hard time finding a workout that stuck. And it just; it took a lot of time for me to figure out sort of what my body wanted. I’m one of those people; and I think you are too. When I workout, I want to sweat so much. I want to feel like totally exhausted at the end. I love that feeling. And so I’ve just tried to find workouts that get me to that point. {laughs}

Juli Bauer: Yeah. Absolutely. I always want to feel like I had a good sweat, whether that’s a yoga sculpt. Just anything I’m going to feel super sweaty afterward. Because if I didn’t get a good sweat, I don’t feel like I got quite a good enough workout. And I know you don’t need to sweat a crazy amount every single time, but that’s what makes me feel like I really earned my workout that day.

Sarah Fennel: Yes. Totally.

Juli Bauer: So, before we end the call, I want to talk about just kind of some of the questions that people had on Instagram. I want to know if you have any tips for a new food blogger. Because obviously you give these types of tips at your workshops. But for someone who is listening and can’t make it to your workshop, do you have any tips of what kind of camera to start out with? Lighting tips or props? Lightroom versus photoshop. Any tips for new blogger or photographer.

Sarah Fennel: Absolutely. I’m so glad you asked, because I’m so excited about this. I haven’t promoted it at all yet because I don’t want to get people too excited before it comes out. But I’m actually going to be teaching online; it’s like an online food photography school. So it’s this one-time price that you pay, and then it’s a 4-week course that you get access to videos every week. And we’ll go through lighting. We’ll go through cameras. We’ll go through set ups. We’ll walk through Lightroom and how to use it, and how to edit on your phone. Basically, it’s like everything you want to know about food photography in a four-week course.

And then after the course, you have access to it forever. So you can go back and look through stuff. So I’m so excited about that.

Juli Bauer: That’s awesome.

Sarah Fennel: Yeah. So, if you are interested in that, feel free to, on my website, I have a contact form. Just email me, and I can get you on the list for that.

Juli Bauer: When are you hoping to come out with that?

Sarah Fennel: So I’m hoping to come out with it in December. I am going to be hosting a free webinar that’s kind of like a little teaser. And in the webinar we’re going to be talking about the three angles that you should always use for food photography. The four things I do to every photo I edit. And then also we’re going to talk a little bit about marketing, because it’s such an important aspect of food blogging. I mean, you can take great pictures, but where do you go from there if you don’t know how to reach out to people about them?

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Sarah Fennel: So it’s a little bit of everything. I’m really excited. That free webinar is coming out the first week in November. So again, if you want to get on the list for that, it’s totally free. Just feel free to contact me through the blog.

Juli Bauer: Fun! That’s so exciting.

Sarah Fennel: Yeah! But you know, I think overall, if I had a message to aspiring food photographers or food bloggers or people just starting out, it’s that I think that anything that’s worth doing in life, or anything that’s going to make an impact in your life is going to be a lot of hard work and effort. And I think, especially in the blogging world, so many people assume that it’s easy because it’s posting beautiful things on the internet. But there’s a lot of energy and effort that goes into it. So, you know, if this is something you want to do, then harness all of your energy, and just really put all of that energy into creating and making it work.

Juli Bauer: And this is my own personal question. Do you prefer photoshop or light room to edit your photos?

Sarah Fennel: I’ve gone back and forth. I started out with Lightroom, and then I felt like I couldn’t get the photos looking how I wanted, so I moved to photoshop. And then I was like, oh my god it’s taking me so long to edit in photoshop. So I basically retaught myself light room and found different ways to work within Lightroom. So now I work exclusively in Lightroom. It’s faster. It’s easier. And it’s a lot more user friendly.

Juli Bauer: Yeah, I feel like it’s so much more user friendly from the minimal time I’ve spent on photoshop, I just feel so lost. Not having any background in it.

Sarah Fennel: Oh totally. And with Lightroom, too; with photoshop as well, but with Lightroom there are so may great tutorials out there. So I would suggest literally going onto YouTube and typing in Lightroom tutorial, food photography. And just studying all the little buttons and doodads that are in Lightroom. Just playing with it.

Juli Bauer: That’s totally how I’ve learned things. I’m like; how do I whiten my teeth on Lightroom? Google; YouTube; easy. {laughs}

Sarah Fennel: Yes!

Juli Bauer: So do you have any; obviously you take your camera everywhere. Do you have any fashionable camera bags that you like to use? Or do you just use a straight up camera bag that it comes with? How do you stay cute while you’re taking your camera everywhere?

Sarah Fennel: Um, I love the company Ona. They have great leather photography bags. They have some totes, some crossbodies. I think they also have some backpacks. But they’re specifically made for photography. So the entire inside is cushioned, and they’re just really beautiful. Definitely recommend that, but also I’m not going to lie, I usually throw my camera into my normal big tote bag. And throw in a chunky scarf with it, and just let the scarf sort of {laughs}.

Juli Bauer: Hold it.

Sarah Fennel: Yeah. But god, it is hard to look cute when you’re carrying around a camera.

Juli Bauer: And those cameras are huge.

Sarah Fennel: I know.

Juli Bauer: They weigh a lot. Do you take them everywhere when you travel as well? Just keep it in your purse with you.

Sarah Fennel: I do. Yeah. And for a while I didn’t. For a while, I used a tiny little point and shoot camera. And every time I came back from a trip, I found myself being like; ugh, I wish I had…

Juli Bauer: Disappointed.

Sarah Fennel: Yeah, I wish I had taken the big one. So I just suck it up and carry around a big camera the whole time.

Juli Bauer: That’s what I’ve been doing. I carry my little point and shoot, or take pictures on my phone. I’m like, ok Juli, you’ve got to start stepping it up and just take around your 50-pound camera. That’s just kind of what you have to do.

Sarah Fennel: Yes. You’ve got to do it.

Juli Bauer: Ok, I have one last question for you. This is such a serious question. Have you ever put soap on your desserts so you didn’t eat them?

Sarah Fennel: {laughs}

Juli Bauer: {laughs}

Sarah Fennel: Oh my god. First of all, this is an amazing question. I love it.

Juli Bauer: {laughing}

Sarah Fennel: I can’t say I’ve put soap on my baked goods, but I have thrown them into the trash, or put water all over them.

Juli Bauer: Ok, water. I mean, water does the trick.

Sarah Fennel: But, ok, I made these churros one time, and they were so good. I was like; too much. I ate like five of them, and I was like, I need to stop. Threw them into the trash. My sister’s boyfriend at the time came over that night. They went out, they got drunk, they came back. And the next morning, we were all sitting down at breakfast; and he was like; I can’t believe we ate trash churros.

Juli Bauer: {laughing}

Sarah Fennel: They ate the churros out of the trash. I was like, are you guys serious? So you can’t just put it on the top of the trash. You have to put something else on top. {laughs}

Juli Bauer: Exactly. I will put them in the trash, and I will pour soap. And that’s totally a Sex in the City Miranda move, but I have done that.

Sarah Fennel: Yes, with chocolate cake.

Juli Bauer: Yes. I’ve done that. Or I’ll put soap in the dish that I was mixing it in, so I won’t keep eating the batter. Get your life together, Juli.

Sarah Fennel: But you know what’s so funny, with the batter bowls, I’ll be filling up the water, and as the water is filling up, I see at the top of the bowl, I’m like; oh but that hasn’t been touched yet! And I just grab that little bit before the water gets to it.

Juli Bauer: I know. I know.

Sarah Fennel: It’s a struggle.

Juli Bauer: The struggle is real. But you are obviously crushing it, because you make the most beautiful desserts and you look fantastic and you look glowing all the time. So you are crushing the life game, Sarah.

Sarah Fennel: Aww, thank you so much.

Juli Bauer: Yeah, thank you so much for coming on. Tell everywhere where they can find you.

Sarah Fennel: You can find me on It’s Broma bakery. And all my social media handles, it’s also @BromaBakery. Again, if you’re interested in learning more about food photography, I would love to have you for this webinar. So feel free to email me too if you have questions.

Juli Bauer: Yeah, you might have an email from me to sign up for that. Because I would love to learn from you.

Sarah Fennel: Ok!

Juli Bauer: And, I might have to stop in at one of your workshops because that sounds super fun.

Sarah Fennel: You have to help me out with figuring where we should go.

Juli Bauer: Ok. I’m happy to do that.

Sarah Fennel: Thank you so much.

Juli Bauer: Yes! Thank you. You hold on the line for a second, I’m just going to end this. Thank you guys so much for listening to this episode. Don’t forget to rate, review, and subscribe. And I will see you guys next time. Bye-bye.

Today on the podcast, I’m talking to the lovely and hilarious Sarah from Broma Bakery. Sarah has some of the most stunning food photos out there so she’s telling me where she gets her inspiration from, how she comes up […] Today on the podcast, I’m talking to the lovely and hilarious Sarah from Broma Bakery. Sarah has some of the most stunning food photos out there so she’s telling me where she gets her inspiration from, how she comes up […] PaleOMG Uncensored yes 1:00:48
Favorite Things Right Now – Episode 58: PaleOMG Uncensored Podcast Sat, 11 Nov 2017 14:07:17 +0000 7 Chatting all about my favorite things right now, from skincare to makeup to food to cleaning products!! Links in Podcast: PaleOMG x Four Athletics, Floral Print, High Waist, 7/8 leggings (use code PALEOMG for 10% off) Avex Water Bottle Forager Cashew […] Chatting all about my favorite things right now, from skincare to makeup to food to cleaning products!!

Links in Podcast:


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Episode 58 Transcription!

1. Favorite things: Products [27:35]
2. Favorite things: Food [30:47]
3. Favorite things: Clothes [37:10]
4. Favorite things: Beauty [40:31]
5. Favorite things: Miscellaneous [47:16]
6. Not so favorite things [50:20]

This is Juli Bauer from PaleOMG and you are listening to PaleOMG Uncensored.

Juli Bauer: Well hello, lovah. How are you? I’m sitting over here on the couch right now, with the little puppy dog that I just walked. Because it’s actually nice today, and the sun is shining. And it’s not freezing AF. And, I still, I don’t now look like a total freak. Let me explain why.

So, I did this treatment called ProFractional. Let me get comfortable. I did this treatment called ProFractional. I’ve talked about it on my blog before, because I’ve done it once before. And I finally did it again. So, it’s this laser. It is an intense f*cking laser, and it gets down deep in the skin. Your skin builds new collagen. So not only does it help with fine lines and wrinkles, but it helps with acne scars, ice pick scars, or just any scars in general. So you’re pretty much building a new layer of skin.

So to build a new layer, you’ve got to take that f*cking layer off. And that’s what they do with this laser. It is very intensive {laughs}. So this time around, I took some drugs beforehand. And I got a nerve block. And no, they’re not like; I’m not doing cocaine or something. But some pain drugs. And I got a nerve block in my face. And I numbed my face beforehand. And still it is so painful!

My esthetician, she told me that someone who listens to the podcast or reads the blog. Someone told her that microblading; so eyebrow tattoo, is much more painful. And I’ve done both, and that is a f*cking lie. That is a straight up lie. ProFractional is so painful. And it makes me feel like such a p*ssy. I feel like such a little b*tch! It hurts so f*cking much, and I hate it. And it’s awful.

And the first night is miserable. Because your face is bleeding. You can smell the skin burning. It bleeds. You have an open wound of a face. And I’m going to post these pictures. I posted pictures on Instagram, on my Instagram stories. But I was going to do a blog post about it once it’s all healed with day by day photos of how it looks as it heals. But it is awful.

The only reason I’m doing it is because I know it’s totally worth it. We do a lot of sh*t that is miserable. Like eat healthy all the time. Who wants to eat f*cking healthy when there’s Twinkies and donuts and mac and cheese available? Let’s be real. I don’t want to f*cking do it, but I still do it. Do I want to workout every day? No. But I still do it. Because I know it’s good for me. Same thing with this miserable treatment.

And, I really don’t want my acne scars to, I don’t know what word I’m trying to say. But I don’t want my acne scars to be there. So trying to start young, erase these cystic acne scars that continue to get deeper as I get older. And my face isn’t as dewy and glowy and chubby as it was. You know when your face is, not like chubby, but you have that bounce back full face. Now it’s kind of getting to the old looking face. So I am taking a step in the right direction, by taking all my skin off.

So the last three days; I’m recording this podcast on Friday, and I got it done on Tuesday afternoon. So I hid out in my house. Sorry I keep yawning. You know; you know the drill, when I’m f*cking by myself. Dammit. But I’ve been hiding out by myself. Luckily my husband wasn’t home on the bloodiest day; on Tuesday. Luckily. But then he’s gone through this process before, so he knows how it goes. And that night is very painful, because you’re like an open wound. You’re still bleeding.

But I didn’t leave the house on Wednesday. And then Thursday, I had to go to the grocery store. Still looked like a complete freak. But you know, Natural Grocers. Whatever. They’re super granola-y there. Love that store. So yeah, it has been an interesting few days. It’s Friday. I just finally left the house. I was able to put on some makeup, but your face looks like a slab of sandpaper. And that’s how it feels. It just feels like sandpaper. It’s really rigid. It’s like all these little dots all over your face where the laser went over. It’s f*cked up man. But beauty is pain, right? That’s what they say. And I believe them. I believe them.

So it feels so good to finally get out of the house. My husband was out of town. I missed him. We haven’t really had some great quality time with each other lately, so we’re going out on a date night this coming weekend. I love that guy. He’s just the best. He thinks I’m f*cking crazy for these facial appointments, but he’s the best still. I think he’s crazy how much he’s spending on golf, but I support him. You know? We’re living that DINK life. That dual income, no kids life. So, he can buy whatever clubs he wants to buy.

He’s just dedicated to this sport that he decided he’s in love with in the past three months. He loves it. He’s planning a boy’s trip to Scottsdale to go gloving in the winter. Since, you know, Colorado is the worst in the winter. And it snows. And it’s the pits. So he’s doing a golf trip there. A-dorable. It’s like 12 dudes or something. I can’t think of 12 girls I would want to hang out with on one trip. Or dudes. Or just human beings. That’s a lot of people.

So, I didn’t want to start recording this podcast. Because I have a new show that I’m really into, thanks to the guys of Mind Pump. They turned me onto this show called Big Mouth on Netflix. And if you’re offended easily, and you don’t like funny things, you probably won’t like this. And you probably; I don’t know why you’re listening to me. But this TV show is kind of like Family Guy. But it’s talking about puberty.

So it’s these cartoons going through puberty and all the awful things that are tied into puberty. So, guys jerking off 47 times a day, like into socks. And girls getting their period, and becoming 100% psychos. It is the best, because it was me 100% hands down. Puberty is the worst.

When people wonder why I’m not interested in having kids; it’s like, were you present in your own puberty? Because I was there. And there is no f*cking way I want to raise a human that was like me. Kicking the door, screaming, getting into mischief that I can’t talk about on this podcast, because my parents might listen to it. Doing dirty stuff. Eww! No. Puberty is disgusting. And you have to raise a child and watch them go through that.

What is that… do you remember that; oh my god, I f*cking love that part. On Bridesmaids, when the blonde is talking about her sons, and how they’re going through puberty. And how they’re breaking; she can break a sock in half? {laughs} Oh my god {laughing}. Oh my god, that part is so funny. But for real, that is puberty.

So if you get stuck with a female, your life is a living hell. And then if you get stuck with a boy, you’re living in a sock hell. You have to buy new socks all the time. And new bedsheets. Ugh. I can’t. Puberty is so gross!

I even had a mom today at the gym, this mom has 3 children. And she loves being a mom. And we were talking about wrinkles, because she was asking about my face appointment, and what it was for, and what it did. And I was like, you know, once you have kids, your hormones are changed so it messes with your skin even more. And she was like; yeah, and the stress of being unhappy. It’s like, from day 1 to 18 years old. That will do it too. I was like, oh my god! This woman who loves having children, she just said how every day is the worst day. I love her. She’s just honest. And she has three children she loves. But wait till those three children go through their period. Eww. Pants are going to be ruined everywhere. Toilets are going to be clogged. It’s going to be anarchy! Name that movie. Breakfast Club, duh!

So anyway. You should totally watch this Netflix original. It is hilarious. So thank you, to the guys at Mind Pump. I’m actually; oh my god. I’m so sorry I’m yawning. Please don’t give me a bad iTunes review. It’s Jackson’s fault. Jackson is my dog. I don’t know how I can blame him on anything. But he’s sleeping, he doesn’t know I’m blaming him.

So I am actually going out to San Jose where the guys of Mind Pump, if you haven’t listened to that podcast, go to You can check them out. They’re awesome guys. And I had Sal Distefano, who is one of the main guys. I think there’s three, and Sal was on my podcast, in case you missed that episode. I think it was 56, and this is 58. And he is so intelligent. So fun to talk to. So they invited me out to San Jose to their studio, because they have a full-on studio where they record. Not their couch full of dog hair with their dog on top of them. Just a little bit more profesh. Just a tad. And they invited me out there.

So I just go there for a quick trip. I literally leave one morning, and I come home the next night. So I have dinner with these guys, and then I record the next morning with them, and then I hop back on a plane. So I’m so pumped to chat with them, and actually meet them in person. And I’ll keep you updated when that podcast comes out. But if you just like listening to people randomly talk, but talk about really cool stuff and have some great information, they are fun. And the come out with like 5 podcasts a week. Bananas! Straight up bananas. I just don’t have enough to talk about. Well, obviously, by myself and with my dog. So, yeah.

But in general, I find myself, as I age, the less I want to talk to other human beings. Because I’m like; I’ve done this. I’ve been here before. I know how it’s going to go down, and it’s not going to be fun. So I’d rather just go home. I know; I’m such a b*tch. But I do like the people that I like. It’s just few and far between.

What else is going on in the world? I have this little long going on, this little cough going on because I didn’t work out Sunday, Monday, and then Wednesday, Thursday. And then I just went back to a CrossFit workout and did an Airdyne, the bike. That son of a b*tch. I hate my yawns so much. Not only do I hate my voice, but hearing my yawn; this is why I can’t listen back to my podcast. So if there’s ever random music in my podcast, you know it’s because I didn’t listen back to it. Because I can’t stand my voice, and I can’t stand my yawns. No. I can’t do it.

So, another huge thing that has happened that I’m so, so excited about. As I lose my voice completely. So, ok. Get this. I teamed up with this company; oh I kind of sound sexy right now. This is like Phoebe in Friends when she loses her voice. That’s how I feel right now.

So I teamed up with this company called Four Athletics. So if you listen to the Girls Gone WOD podcast, you’ve probably already heard of this amazing activewear. Because they’re the ones who introduced me to it. They did a collaboration with Four Athletics to come out with their own leggings, and I tried them and I’m like; oh my god! These are f*cking awesome leggings. Because I’m very particular about mine. So I was very surprised when a smaller company that I didn’t really know about was actually coming out with great quality.

So we started talking about doing a collaboration together! Held that one down. And the; oh my god, I forgot. No, never mind. I was about to go on a b*tchy tangent, but I didn’t. {laughs} So, I teamed up with Four Athletics, and I was able to create my own leggings. So I wanted to go similar to the wonder under high rise 7/8 length. Those are my favorite Lululemon tights, and I wanted them to be similar to that. Because those are always my go-to staples. I knew I wanted them to be blue, and I wanted this night tide color. That’s what the blue color I chose is called. And then I wanted there to be some sort of floral design. So I wanted this feminine touch to it.

I feel like when you put floral all over, it just kind of makes your ass look huge. Especially to women who have a bigger butt; it just really stretches and looks funky. So I wanted to keep the floral pattern down towards the bottom. And I wanted just these light, feminine colors into it.

So we did a bunch of sketches; or they did a bunch of sketches. The designer did. And went back and forth, changing; oh actually I want this flower to be this color, and I want this flower instead of this flower. And came up with the design. They shipped out the leggings. I got them, I love them. I made a couple of changes. Because what is so cool about Four Athletics, is they are a crowd funded company. So that means, they’re made in the US, and they only produce what is ordered. So if you order a legging, they print a legging. So instead of buying all of this material, and then some never gets used up, they’re only purchasing what is ordered. So it really frees up waste.

What’s cool about that is they take out the middle man. So they actually cut the price down way more. These leggings are originally $120; and they’re marked down to $68. So it’s super cool. And they do these campaigns where it’s time constricted. So these leggings won’t be available forever. So they’re only available until November 22nd, and then will probably never print this same legging again. So THIS will be the only time you can get these first PaleOMG leggings!

So I’m running a giveaway on my website right now, and then I’ll be doing a giveaway on my Instagram, as well. And I know some of my girlfriends are doing giveaways that I’ll definitely point out. My girlfriends from Girls Gone WOD, they did one. I know Cassy from is going to do one. And so some of my lovely little people are helping me spread the word.

These leggings; they’re above the belly button. They come high waisted. They’re not see-through. They don’t show sweat. They don’t give you a camel toe. Camel toe and sweat showing through seem to be the big two things women freak the f*ck out about. But it’s like; hey, if you want to pull those pants up and your vagina wants to say hello to the world, you rock it. But these leggings don’t do that. You can see my photos online. I did not have that issue. I also didn’t have an issue with sweat showing through. So, keep that in mind when you’re deciding if you want to purchase these.

And what’s cool about this campaign is it ends on November 22nd, but if you get in your order by November 22nd, you will get these in time for the holidays. So Christmas or whatever holiday you celebrate, you will get that before Christmas. So if you want to purchase this for a friend, or your lover. Your partner in crime. Your dog. I don’t know; you have a cat? You’re a cat person? That’s totes cool, ok. Your cat can wear these. I support it. Send me a picture, please.

So yeah. These leggings launched, and I love them, and I’m so excited. And talking to them already about creating new ones in the future. And just being able to create more of a line. So I’m so excited! I was so nervous. It’s very hard to decide what your first pair is going to be. And nail it down to one thing. So next one we might be able to pick a few different designs, which will be really cool. So I can’t wait! I’m so excited.

If you want to check these out, you can just go to and you can get it there. Or you can go to, and it’s in their workshop. So if you just do /products/PaleOMG you can find it. But it’s right on their main site, as soon as you go on there. You’ll find the PaleOMG leggings. And, if you want to get these, you can get them for 10% off with the promo code PaleOMG. if you miss any of this, I’ll have a link in this podcast notes. And you can always go to because I have all the information there. Totes cool? Totes cool.

Something else that is very exciting that I was working on. Why I had to skip the gym on Monday, Sunday and Monday, was because I am filming some cooking videos. So I’m trying to expand the blog a little bit more and give you guys some videos to look at these recipes. And I’m going to start filming cooking videos every month. And so this first time around, just to get used to this crew and filming these videos for the first time, I filmed 6 cooking videos, and I did 5 old recipes along with one new one that will be coming out in December.

But to make sure these days go really smooth and easy and quickly, and so we can start at 9 in the morning and end at 4, I had to prep everything the day before. So I’m pretty much buying double the groceries, because I’m going to recook it on camera. So I had these skillet potatoes that I did. So I made the skillet potatoes, put them in the oven, and then remade the skillet potatoes almost completely. And so I would have; ok this is how you make the skillet potatoes. Slice them up, but they’re almost already sliced so they’re all in the pan, ready to go. And then, ok, put it in the oven. Here’s the magic of TV! I have the finished product.

So you’re prepping before and after everything ready to go. And then after I made everything the day before, I also had to clean up the kitchen. So doing all the dishes, cleaning up completely, getting everything back away. Get the plates ready to go that will be served and photographed. And so it was a whole Sunday thing, literally 6 in the morning until 8 at night I was getting everything ready to go.

And then started the next morning. Got ready, took Jackson out because Jackson would be a psycho if he was at the house and there was a camera crew here. And then the camera crew got here, and we filmed those 6 cooking videos. And it was awesome. It was so easy. It went way better than expected from doing all that prep the day before. That helped out tremendously.

So I’m so pumped, because I will have these videos for you very soon, probably by the time; hopefully by the time you listen to this podcast. I’ll start releasing them. And then I’m going to start filming more, so I will have even more for you coming up.

So yeah, when you start seeing these, please give me feedback on them. Because this was my first time filming, and I really tried to show my personality in these videos, but it was also just like getting a feel for them at first. So feel free to give me feedback. If you followed my blog, I don’t know, 2011, I did these cooking videos where I danced on video. There will be no dancing. I shouldn’t say that. There will be no dancing in these first ones that I recorded. Hopefully there’s dancing in the future as I get more and more comfortable with this camera crew. But I would love to hear your feedback, and hear what you think. I’m excited to see how these go, and see what you guys think. So that is very exciting! So I’ve got leggings, I’ve got these videos. I got my face bloody. So much has happened in a week!

So, ok. Just back up a second. My husband did this allergy test called the Dunwoody test. And he had to check out some food allergies, because he’s had all these issues. And he has to not drink for a while. And my husband likes to drink; he likes to have a couple of drinks a week, if not more during the weekend. And I don’t really care to drink at all, because I see it as wasted calories. But now my husband is not drinking. And as soon as he was like; I can’t drink, I wanted to drink. Like, him being told he can’t made me feel like I can’t, and then I wanted it.

Like, he was out of town when I was filming these cooking videos, and by the end of the day, I don’t want any of the food I cooked two days in a row. I don’t want to be near my kitchen. I don’t want to see the dirty dishes. No. Get away. So I went out to a restaurant, and had dinner by myself. And I got a cocktail by myself. The cocktail ended up sucking ass, so it wasn’t even worth it. But if this was before my husband stopped drinking while he’s healing his gut, I totally would not have gotten a drink. But I was like, yeah. Husband’s gone, I’m going to do it! And I had a cocktail. But man, it was a stressful two days. It is, I’m telling you.

Ok, one last thing before I get into actual talking. Can we talk about Stranger Things for a second? Because everybody is so obsessed. And I totes get it, ok? I’ll stop saying totes, I’m sorry. So I totally get it. That 80’s vibe, Steve’s hair, the 80’s music. The guy who looks like, what is his name? Dammit. I shouldn’t have even said that because now I can’t remember his name. But I get like the vibe, everybody loves the 80s. We all do. They’re the best.

But why does everything have to be so gooey and gross on Stranger Things? It kind of makes me feel sick to my stomach when everybody is like; they’re cutting off the limbs of this creature, and they’re digging in this goo infested good. Why does everything have to be so gross? I’m just not into it.

So I really try, and I’ve almost watched all the episodes. And my husband has fallen asleep in every single one of them. So I’ve seen every single episode twice at this point. He fell asleep last night, on the final episode. I was like, come on, bro! But why does everything have to be so gooey? It’s just, I don’t know. I find it tough to follow. There’s a lot of moving parts. But everybody loves it. My best friend Laura is like, obsessed with it. And I like her, and I trust her. But she’s wrong.

Ok, it’s still a good show. It’s just like, I don’t quite get it. I just really like Steve’s hair. I think I have a crush on Steve. His hair is just so good. It’s so fluffy. I want his stylist. I want that height! I’m so jealous.

1. Favorite things: products [27:35]

Ok, so let’s talk about some favorite things. We haven’t done an episode like this in a hot while. I hope you guys have been enjoying some of these interviews that I’ve had on. I’m trying to do a couple of interviews, and then an episode by myself. Then a couple of interviews, and an episode by myself. Kind of switch it up; just keep it fresh. Oh so fresh. Frosh. You know.

Ok. So, let’s talk about some products I’ve got going on right now that I’m loving. This water bottle is my favorite water bottle, and I think you need to get your hands on it now. Because I think they’re maybe going out of business. I don’t know what’s happening to them. But I bought as many as I could, because I think they’re almost gone. And it’s the Avex water bottle. And I’ve tried a million other water bottles, but this one I drink so much more water. I’m staring at it. I’m going to take a sip right now. It keeps your water so cold. It has a little spout, so you push this button, and the spout opens up. And you can just chug water.

Because some water bottles; what I love about this one is this one opens up air, so it can just flow. Because you know, when the air, if it doesn’t have air, if your mouth is on a water bottle, how it stops and you have to let air, oxygen back in it for it to come back out. Do you know what I’m talking about? Well this opens up air when you press on the spout, so water just flows. So you’re drinking water like a beast. And then it has a little lock, so you can lock it, because I have poured water on my computer before and completely ruined my computer. So my husband bought me this water bottle. It’s the best. And I bought it in 40 ounces. So imagine how much water I’m drinking a day. Imagine how much urine that is! No? You don’t want to imagine that? Whatever.

So these Avex water bottles. I’m pretty sure the business is going out of business. I don’t know what’s happening to it. Nor do I care to look it up. But you should totally get these water bottles. Vacuum insulated. Hot or cold; your preference. Why you’d want 40 ounces of hot liquid, I don’t know.

Speaking of hot liquid, I could really go for a coffee right now. I get to this point every single day that I’m like; ok, you can’t have coffee after noon. And I’m like a one cup of coffee kind of person. But every time it hits like 1, because I told myself I can’t have coffee after noon, I want it so much more. This is why I don’t tell myself I can’t have something. Because I want it so much more. If I don’t say any of that stuff, then I just eat healthy. But as soon as I say I can’t have blah-blah-blah, I want it so much more.

So yeah. Avex water bottles. Check them out. You will love them. Best water bottle ever. Before they’re gone.

2. Favorite things: to eat [30:47]

Now, another thing I’m eating daily; not another thing because I haven’t said eating yet. But something I’m eating daily is Butcher Box breakfast sausage. So I’ve talked about Butcher Box. I’ve talked to Mike, the owner of Butcher Box on here. I’ve had Butcher Box as a sponsor on here before. I obviously talk about them all the time. And I don’t talk about things I don’t like. I love Butcher Box. I love them. I get to work with this girl at Butcher Box who I just adore. She’s just a gem. So I just love Butcher Box even more.

They’ve been so great. And they have the best quality meat. I get a box of their grass-fed, grass finished meat every month. So I just started doing some add-ons to my order, and I added on; I had to hold in that yawn. I added on the burger patties and then breakfast sausage. And the breakfast sausage is so good. It’s like salt, pork, and sage. And that’s it. And it’s bomb. There’s no sugar added to it. They use heritage breed pork. So good. Highly recommend that, especially if you use Butcher Box. You can do an add on if you haven’t tried it already. It’s so good. It’s just the best breakfast.

So sad, because my husband can’t have pork right now! So he’s been having to have turkey sausages. Then he’s not supposed to have pepper. So I’m like, do you just want me to get you ground turkey? Such a bummer. He can’t have chicken either. He’s living a non-fun life right now, that’s for sure. Not his best life. #NotHisBestLIfe. Hopefully our date night makes him the best life ever. Hopefully having me as a wife makes it a better life. Because knowing you can’t have pork, or oranges, or black pepper, or anything fun is a real downer.

Another thing I just tried in the food category that I loved is one of my favorite restaurants that’s a paleo restaurant in town. It’s called Just Be Kitchen. So I’m sorry if you’re not in Denver, and you’re like, “I don’t give a sh*t about something I can’t try.” Apologies, ok? Maybe you’ll visit Denver. You’re in China? I’m sorry. Come here. Come try this. Because Just Be just came out with biscuits and gravy. And it is so bomb. They do like a mushroom gravy, too, so if you’re vegetarian. But I’m obviously not. And their biscuits and gravy with pork sausage was so delightful. Oh my god!

I could totally make biscuits and gravy at home, but it’s just a lot to make. I’d much rather do some sausage, bacon, and a salad than put the work into make biscuits and gravy. I don’t even want to put the work in to make pancakes, let alone biscuits and gravy. So this Just Be Kitchen; they just released their fall menu. And ugh, it is so good. I filled up on it before I had my face lasered off and went into a two-day depressed state. So good. So good.

What else? What other favorite things am I loving right now? Oh, food. I want to stay on food for a little bit. The forager cashew. If you’ve seen Forager brand, they have some drinks. But they also have a cashew milk yogurt. I think they have cashew milk you can buy. And I’ve had that before. But I’ve found that it goes bad really fast; like crazy fast. And so I just haven’t purchased that. But they have this cashew milk yogurt, and I love it. And it has probiotics in it, as well. So good! So if you can’t have dairy, check them out.

Another dairy free cheese thing I love, and I used it in a recipe this week, actually, is Kite Hill cream cheese. So if you haven’t checked them out, they’re an almond milk cheese company. And they just milk those almonds. You know? Milk those almond teats. And the cream cheese is outrageously good. Outrageous. Highly recommend.

I made a pumpkin cheesecake. Oh, that reminds me to talk about what happened on the blog this week. Which I always forget to do. Which is stupid. But I made a no-bake pumpkin cheesecake. So you can make them in these little cookie cups, or you can just put it in jars like I have. That’s calling my name now. It’s in my fridge, staring at me.

And then I also made a Thanksgiving side dish. So that’s like a little Thanksgiving dessert. But if you’re going the side-dish route, I made this brussels sprouts salad. And it’s roasted with apples and butternut squash. And, what else? I think those are just the three. And then I make this dressing that you put on top of it after it’s roasted and you get those brussels sprouts burnt and black, how all brussels sprouts should be eaten. I just hate brussels sprouts when they’re not fully soft in the middle and burnt on the outside. What’s the point in eating a kind of soggy, slightly hard brussels sprout? Gross.

So this side dish is easy because Thanksgiving is stressful enough on its own. Because you’re probably hanging out with most likely people you don’t want to. Maybe it’s a Friendsgiving, I don’t know. But holidays stress me the hell out, so I just try to act like they don’t exist.

3. Favorite things: clothes [37:10]

Anyways. Other things that I’m loving. There the best jacket. Oh my god. Did I just say “Jackie?” There’s the best jacket that I just received. I got it from Lole. And I talk about it in a blog post, but in case you missed that blog post, it’s the Lole faith jacket. And it’s expensive. It’s definitely on the higher price range, but it’s so comfortable. And I gave; you’ve got to keep on the blog, because I had a two-day discount. It was on only good for two days, so if you didn’t watch the blog you missed this discount on this amazing f*cking jacket.

But it’s this Lole faith jacket. And it’s just this incredible high quality. It is so warm. And it’s one of those jackets that goes above the knee. Like it’s a long jacket. But it cinches in at the waist. So it gives you shape. It is so warm. The hood is lined with; not fur, but kind of. Not like velvet. I don’t know. Some sort of faux fur. And you stay so, so warm all day. Oh my god I love this jacket so much.

As you know, if you’ve followed me for any amount of time, I had Colorado in the winter. I don’t like being cold. And as soon as October hits, my feet are cold until May. I don’t have good circulation, I guess. Or it could be that it’s f*cking cold. I don’t know. But all I do is put my cold toes onto my husband, and then he likes me less. He’s going to end up divorcing me because I have cold feet.

Oh, speaking of warmer places, I get to go to Austin soon. So pumped about that. Going on a couple’s trip; how adorbs is that? Done that one other time in Mexico and that was super fun. So I get to go to Austin with another couple; oh yeah! And then I have two trips to Mexico in December. Two! Cabo and Tulum. Girlfriend’s birthday, and then a family trip. Yes, to get away as much as possible when it’s 14 degrees here. I woke up and it was 24 degrees outside this morning. 24 is not warm. And it’s not enjoyable.

And I get it, there’s nothing to complain about because it’s probably like 60 degrees now and sunny, and Jackson was sweating bullets out his mouth because it was so damn warm. Not so damn warm; but warm enough that I unzipped my jacket. But still. My toes were cold this morning.

I did get the biggest robe in the world. I need to post it on Instagram because I got this fluffy robe. And it is so warm that I started sweating this morning while I was wearing it. But I’d much rather sweat; have sweaty pits, than have cold toes. And believe me, I have sweaty pits already. That puberty stage that you hit when you’re just sweat all the time; it never went away. My brother-in-law has that too. We get each other. We just totally get each other with our sweaty pits.

4. Favorite things: beauty [40:31]

So some different products I’m loving; and I’ve talked about all these products. I did a beauty post recently, so you can go to that beauty post and it talks about all these products there. But there’s these Tula; now I need to make sure I say it right. But Tula dual phase cleansing pads. So they’re kind of like a facial in this little pad. It makes your skin so smooth and bright, so I’ve been using those. Here, I just looked it up so I’ll say it right. Dual phase skin reviving treatment pads. It’s a mouthful. And you can actually get any Tula products for 20% off with the promo code PaleOMG. They’re amazing.

Any of these products that I’m talking about; these were not sponsored. I’m just talking about them because I really love them and I use them all the time when my face is actually healed and I don’t look like a psycho freak. Ugh. So I’ve been using those on a regular basis, in between seeing my esthetician. So I can look fresh. Frosh.

I’ve also been loving this revision skincare. It’s called Revox 7. So a reader actually recommended this, and that’s how I tried it out in the first place. And it’s like Botox in a bottle. You put it on your face. You’re supposed to put it around your smile lines and under your eyes. And it kind of plumps up your skin. I’ve been noticing more and more fine lines around my mouth, because I frown and I smile all the time. And I still refuse to get any injections. Like fillers, yet. I’m just not to the filler stage in my life. So this Revox 7 fills in those fine lines. It is awesome. I highly recommend it. It’s expensive, but you don’t use very much. And I don’t even use it every day. I use it more of if I’m going on a date, or I’m taking photos, or I have my videos I’m filming, that’s when I do it.

Another beauty product; these are all beauty products, but I’ll link them. So if you forget any of them, you have the link there. So, Jane Iredale, this mineral BB cream. I picked it up when I was traveling in Idaho. Even though I didn’t have the most fun when I was there, I did go to this amazing little beauty bar, where it had all these fantastic beauty products. I just looked in the window when I was walking by and saw Jane Iredale, and I love Jane Iredale. I use it all the time; her products. And I’ve been using powder for years now after my friend Hayley from Primal Palate introduced me to it. I was using the powder, but I don’t really like powder for day to day. I like powder on film when you don’t want to be shiny. But for day to day, I want to look a little more dewy, and glowy.

And so this BB cream, I use with just a beauty blender to blend it into my skin, is amazing coverage. So I use that as my foundation, and I use a concealer for any spots like under eyes, where they’re darker, or any zits. Whatever. But this BB cream is money! I actually just had a person message me yesterday, and thanked me for introducing them to that product. Because they are obsessed with it now, too! So cool. Obsessed. Obsessed.

And, another thing, I’ve been having some skin issues. My hormones have just been a little off with changing birth controls, and just getting them kind of reset. I’ve been using the charcoal mask by Beautycounter. So I got the; they have like a, what’s it called. I just don’t want to call it something else. It’s the multimask set. I couldn’t even think of that word. Cool, Juli.

So it’s the Beautycounter multimask set. And it has a charcoal mask, a brightening mask, and a plumping mask. And it comes with a brush, too. So you can put it on with a brush instead of your hands. So it just makes it a lot easier, getting it under your eyes, and just into the crevices, instead of building up a mask under your nail. Because that’s so cute and all. So I’ve been loving that.

And then one more; one more thing. I think you have to get it at your doctor. I don’t think you can order it online. But I use this beyond complexion vitamin C with HQ lightening serum. So it’s the hydroquinone serum. Which helps get rid of dark spots. So I have a lot of dark spots on my forehead from years of lifeguarding. So that pigmentation has been messed with. So as soon as I hit the sun, that pigmentation comes back. Even as much as my esthetician works on it. It will always come back.

So I took the summer off of using it, because I knew I would be in the sun most of the time. Especially since we’re out on the boat a lot. And the boat, like we own a boat. We don’t own a boat. Someone’s boat. When we’re out on someone’s boat. So this HQ, I started using it after the summer ended. I used it for a couple of months, and those dark spots completely went away. And now I’m going to take a few months off of it.

I think it can mess with the pigmentation of your skin if you use it too much. And it can kind of bleach the skin, almost. I don’t know, is that called hyperpigmentation? Not totally sure. So I’m taking a couple of months off, then I’ll use it again, take a couple of months off and kind of switch through it. That was recommended by one of my estheticians. So I love that. If you have dark spot issues, that stuff is money. Money. But I think you have to get it from a doctor. I’m not 100% sure. Just because I got it at my esthetician’s office, that’s how I was able to get my hands on it.

5. Favorite things: Miscellaneous [47:16]

So, these are like totally weird things that I’m loving lately. And they sound so stupid. So this company, if you’ve ever used I did a sponsored post with them recently, and it introduced me to their new clean living products called uniquely J. And they came out with this cleaner dish soap. I can’t say any of my words right now. I think because I have that phlegmy cough from the Airdyne.

But this clean living soap they have, dish soap. It’s a lemon thyme basil dish soap. Ugh, Juli. And it smells so good. I’ve been using that for all my dishes, and it makes your kitchen smell so good. And then a hand soap I’m loving is the Myer’s; so this is a different brand. So the Meyer’s hand soap, the mum scent. Who knew mums smelled so good? I don’t know what a mum is. Is that a flower? I just think of moms. Moms are debatable if they smell good. Mum is a flower, right? I don’t know. Smells so good. Love that stuff. It is so delightful.

And you just want to smell your hands. And then you want to wash your hands more. So you probably don’t pick up all the diseases that are out there. Because everyone is disgusting. Another reason not to have kids. They’re disgusting.

Ok, I think I only have one more obsession, thing that I love. And it’s nothing new. I think I just stick to my same old, same old things. I don’t know. I’m about to make cookies, so maybe those will be on my favorite things list. But I am loving Express and Nordstrom lately. And Express especially because they have fun gliterally; oh my god I literally cannot talk today. Literally. Name that show. Parks and Rec.

They have a bunch of glittery stuff right now that I cannot get enough of. I just went in there today for a couple of returns, and then just pretty much just purchased everything new that I had just returned. They had so much fun glittery stuff. And who doesn’t want to wear glitter all the time? And you can only really get away with it on a regular basis, on a weekly basis, during winter time. You go summertime, and you look weird. You look like you’re trying too hard. Wintertime, you can do it. They have all the glittery things.

We’re celebrating New Years, not at home, this year. So I might just still wear glitter. I don’t know, man. I’m thinking about it.

6. Not so favorite things [50:20]

So those are my only favorite things this week. I was trying to think of things that I’m not into right now. You know? I think it’s good to think about things we’re not into. And then just throw them away. You know what I’m not into? This mirror that’s in front of my face right now. Because this face ain’t doing me any justice. Ok? Not into it.

I’m not into the cold weather. I’m not into Facebook listening to my phone. Because literally, I had to put this down, because somebody came to the door. Looking at an Instagram story, an ad for Uniquely J popped up. Hello! Just talked about them 40 seconds ago. Hey Facebook, you’re creeping me out, man.

I don’t really love the explore page, because it only gives me naked chicks and them working out in thongs. And based on the people I follow, which is no women working out in thongs, I’m not sure how that became my explore page. Why can’t it just be Frenchies and chocolate? Ok? Because those are my high interests on my people I follow on Instagram. So why is it all assholes? Like, literal assholes? Not human being assholes, but someone’s asshole, working out.

Who works out in thongs? I mean, I am all about feeling good in your workout wear. You just take your shirt off. You wear those short-shorts that your little bum hangs out the bottom. We used to have this stunning trainer at our gym who wore these little shorts and her little butt cheeks would fall out the bottom. And I didn’t hate on her. I was like, girl, if I had that ass, f*ck yeah I would wear those shorts. Go you. But a thong? Come on. That is not comfortable. Unless you are running on a beach in Brazil. If you’re just f*cking going to the leg press, and you’re in a thong, imagine the herpes you’re getting on your ass. Ringworm.

I got ringworm once. You know why? When I taught swim lessons. To children. Hence, another reason why I don’t want to have children. Yep. They’re disgusting. Hating on children this week, I guess.

Other things I’m not into; I think that’s it. I feel pretty positive. I mean, I have been a hermit for the past few days, stuck in my house. I could go off on tangents about the world that we’re living in, but you know, I’m not really into the political and constitutional podcast genre. I like to stay away from that.

Oh. Wait. Wait, wait, wait. No, I guess I already talked about this. But I’m going to add this to my list, ok. I’m going to add it once more. Of, this is things I love. Because I wait every Thursday for this. Wine and Crime podcast. If you haven’t listened to that podcast, do it. They are magic. Straight up magic. They are so funny. If you don’t like true crime, and you don’t like murder, then you probably won’t like them. But they’re very feminist, opinionated, hilarious, intelligent, badass women who just talk about different topics of true crime. And they talk about the psychology of it. And the history of it. Of different topics. And then they talk about different stories. And they have good stories.

Because I feel like I’ve heard every different serial killer out there at this point. Because I listen to so many true crime and murder podcasts. But these girls dig up new ones. And they’re just way more fun to listen to than a lot. They’re just the best. Wine and Crime podcast. Listen to them.

Ok, that’s it. That’s all I’ve got for you today. Because right now, I need to make some cookies. Because I made them yesterday, and I wasn’t happy with them. And of course, I ate 47 of them even though I had to throw them out finally. And I just wasn’t happy with how they turned out. So I’m ready to whip up some new cookies today. And nail this recipe down. So I’ve got to do that.

And then I’m making surf and turf for my husband and my sister-in-law tonight. We’re having a surf and turf Friday night. And then I have date night this weekend. And then I’ve got to work all day on Sunday. So I hope you go crush this weekend. I hope your day is badass as all hell. And I can’t wait to hear your feedback on these videos, once these videos go live.

Don’t forget that my leggings; these leggings are only going to be available until November 22nd to order. So you need to get your hands on them right now. And you can get them for 10% off with the promo code PaleOMG. Just go to You’ll find them right there. But you can always go to and enter my giveaway as well! Whoo, whoo, whoo, whoo-hoo! So excited.

Now. I’m off. Don’t forget to go to And don’t forget to rate, review, and subscribe. But please, only happy reviews. No need to give me feedback about my yawns. We’ve been down this road. If you’ve been listening to me from the beginning, you know how it goes. Ok, you know. You’re the best. Now, I will talk to you soon. I cannot wait to hear your feedback on these videos. Now go try out some of these products, because they’re the best! I’ll talk to you soon. Bye-bye.

Chatting all about my favorite things right now, from skincare to makeup to food to cleaning products!! Links in Podcast: PaleOMG x Four Athletics, Floral Print, High Waist, 7/8 leggings (use code PALEOMG for 10% off) Avex Water Bottle Forager Cashew […] Chatting all about my favorite things right now, from skincare to makeup to food to cleaning products!! Links in Podcast: PaleOMG x Four Athletics, Floral Print, High Waist, 7/8 leggings (use code PALEOMG for 10% off) Avex Water Bottle Forager Cashew […] PaleOMG Uncensored yes 56:52
Interview with Kathleen of Carrie Bradshaw Lied – Episode 57: PaleOMG Uncensored Podcast Sat, 04 Nov 2017 14:08:42 +0000 7 Today on the podcast, I’m talking to one of my favorite people to follow on instagram. Kathleen of Carrie Bradshaw Lied is hilarious, beautiful, intelligent and one badass B. She works hard to produce amazing content on her website every single […] Today on the podcast, I’m talking to one of my favorite people to follow on instagram. Kathleen of Carrie Bradshaw Lied is hilarious, beautiful, intelligent and one badass B. She works hard to produce amazing content on her website every single week and she’s sharing her story with me! From what she did before she started blogging to how she ended up with a three legged cat to how she balances life with an MD husband. She’s seriously the best and was so fun to talk to. Don’t forget to follow Kathleen on her blog and on instagram and all her other social media channels!


 Support the podcast by clicking the Subscribe button on iTunes and please a review only if you love the podcast! There is enough negativity in this world, don’t spread more. I love hearing about what YOU want me to talk about so feel free to leave on comment here or on social media with topics you’d like me to cover! And don’t forget, some posts have affiliate links which I may be compensated from. This compensation helps with keeping this blog and up and running! Thank you so much for your support, you guys are amazing!


Episode 57 Transcription!

Well hey there darlin face. Welcome to another episode of PaleOMG Uncensored. Before I get started with today’s very lovely guest, I’ve got to tell you what happened on the blog this week; in case you missed any of it. Of course you didn’t. You went to every single day, right? No? Ok cool. Well, let’s do a little review. Because I think it was a fun time this week.

Monday morning, I shared my weekly workouts. Where I talk about not playing the victim. Because you know how all of us were like; I always have this going on, I can’t work out. I have this going on. And we just put ourselves in the victim place. Does that make sense? No? Just go read. I talk about it there.

Then I have two new recipes for you guys. I have pumpkin spice baked granola bars, and I have Mexican pumpkin soup. So I’m obviously a little obsessed with pumpkin. Because I have another pumpkin recipe coming next week. A little annoying, but it’s ok, ok? Because it’s really delicious. Pumpkin spice granola bars are delish, but the Mexican pumpkin soup you need to go make right now. And don’t use canned pumpkin. Don’t. I’m telling you, don’t do it. Use a real roasted pumpkin. I promise you, it is worth the extra effort. And it’s really no effort; you cut the pumpkin in half and you bake it. It’s literally the easiest thing ever.

And then I have a beauty and makeup products post. I’m talking about my recent skincare routine. I’m talking about my favorite products. And I have a video. Which, videos make everything more fun, right? Right.

And then I’m talking about New Years’ Eve. I know it’s super early, but wait. Just, hear me out. I’m not super excited about Thanksgiving. Because I’ve already made all the Thanksgiving food for you guys. So I’m not that excited about it. Christmas this year, we are not really celebrating because we’re going to go to Mexico for New Years’. Ok, so I’m not really even caring about Thanksgiving and Christmas. They’re not on my radar. So I’m just thinking about New Years’ at this point. And so, I’m sharing a New Years’ Eve look in the blog.

I get it. It’s too early. Believe me, I was in a miniskirt in 30-degree weather, so yeah I get it. It’s too early. But just look at the outfit. Try it on for size. And I’m sharing a discount too, for that outfit. $25 off your $100 order. Discounts galore!

And wait. Before I let you go, and before I introduce our guest, I have something extremely special coming to the blog on Tuesday. I created my own product, and I am so incredibly excited, and I’m starting to sweat thinking about it because I’m very nervous. But it’s coming to the blog on Tuesday. It’s 7:30 in the morning. It’s coming to the blog Tuesday, and I want you guys to check it out. So all you have to do is go to on Tuesday, and there will be something very special. Ok? Ok.

Now, before we get started, let me introduce our guest. Today, I have Kathleen from Carrie Bradshaw Lied on the podcast. She is the sweetest. She has this southern accent. She is a fashion blogger, and you can find her at and on her Instagram. And she has some of the most beautiful outfits. And she’s just an all around hilarious person to follow. So I don’t just follow her for her amazing outfits, I follow her because she is so funny. I love to watch her Instagram stories every day, and I wanted to hear her story. So I hope you guys enjoy! Have a great day. Bye-bye for now.

This is Juli Bauer from PaleOMG and you are listening to PaleOMG Uncensored.

Juli Bauer: Hey everybody! Welcome to another episode of PaleOMG Uncensored. Today is a very special day, because I have an amazing guest. Her name is Kathleen, and she runs the blog So Kathleen, I always want to call you Carrie. Do people want to call you Carrie because of that?

Kathleen: Everyone calls me Carrie.

Juli Bauer: {laughs}

Kathleen: I usually just roll with it, you know? Why?

Juli Bauer: Yeah. Just bob your head.

Kathleen: Why correct people? Just roll with it. Totally.

Juli Bauer: That’s true. Well Kathleen, thank you so much. I’ve followed you for; I don’t know. Maybe a couple of years now. I think I just found you on the explore page of Instagram and just fell in love and wanted to follow your every move. And you are so fun to listen to on Instagram stories. So when I was thinking about people I wanted to interview, you’re just hilarious so I automatically thought of you. So thank you so much for being on!

Kathleen: You’re awesome. It is a privilege. I likewise have been following you for years. And I remember us chatting briefly on social media back when I still had a full-time job in addition to the blog. So I feel like we kind of go way back.

Juli Bauer: Totally! {laughs} I was like, you need to quit your job! Go fulltime! {laughs}

Kathleen: Honestly, I’ll never forget it. I remember the advice you gave me, even though it was a short little pearl of wisdom. But honestly, no big surprise, you were exactly right.

Juli Bauer: Aww! That is so, so cool. Well tell everyone; kind of give a background if people don’t know who you are. Who you are, just a little synopsis of yourself. Then kind of talk about

Kathleen: Yeah. So I was born and raised in the south; a mix of Tennessee and Mississippi. I want to college in the south, which is where I met my now husband. And my career dream has always been to work at a magazine. That was my life goal. So I curated my entire; my college degree, my internships, everything around trying to get a job at a magazine. So my first job was at Southern Living Magazine in the marketing and PR department; which was a total dream. And six months in, half of my floor got laid off.

Juli Bauer: Oh my gosh.

Kathleen: {laughs} So, I quickly was realizing, I don’t know what the longevity. I’m just starting my career, and this is what I’ve always wanted to do, but I don’t know how much growth potential there is for me being young and new. Like, one of the first ones they get rid of. So I kind of have to use my skillset and my interests and maybe go a different way.

Which was a real bummer, but it’s just life, you know. Sometimes there are forks in the road. Sometimes you have to figure out what makes sense. So from there I kind of continued to pursue marketing and social media and corporate jobs, which is where I always kind of saw myself in more of a corporate setting. All the while kind of doing my blog on the side just for fun. Which was mostly because in college I would style my friends, so they would say; “What should I wear tonight?” So I would put together outfits for them.

So flashforward to after college. I’m trying to work and build a career and they’re still texting me. “What do I wear with this? Do I wear a belt? What color?” So I was like, I’m going to start a blog and that way you guys will understand why I buy some things from Target, and some things from Saks, you know?

So all the while I just kind of kept that going on the side until I kind of finally hit a place in my career where I knew I had to go one way or the other. It wasn’t really working to manage both anymore. And that was in 2015. And I’ve been doing the blog fulltime for about 2 years. And I think towards the end of that is when you and I were chatting. And you were like; honestly, once you decide to go full force, you’ll never look back. And I remember you telling me that, and encouraging me, and I just kind of took the leap of faith. And honestly, I haven’t regretted it a day. It’s been such an enormous blessing.

So it’s been a really interesting turn. 10 years ago if you had told me I’d be doing this, I would just laugh. There would be no way.

Juli Bauer: And so when did you start your blog? What year was it?

Kathleen: I want to say it was in February of 2011-ish? It may have been 2010. But it was just this big sack of garbage; hot garbage for about 3 years at least. I would just hash out previous Real Housewives episodes. Talk about special collections coming to Target. Pretty much throwing something up once a week to see if it stuck. And not really thinking much about it past that. But this was back; you know. And you’ve been blogging for quite a while. Back in those early days of blogging. Nobody really knew what the potential was. You know? It was just kind of like, whatever.

Juli Bauer: Yeah, you could have a piece of garbage and people would still read it, because that’s how every single website looked. And it was fine.

Kathleen: Totally. I was putting garbage on the internet weekly, feeling great about it.

Juli Bauer: {laughs} Totally.

Kathleen: And to be honest, I always try to stick to that. I’m like; remember why you started this blog in the first place. You can have fun with it. Because when it starts feeling less fun, and more like a deadline, deadline, deadline; you’ve got to take a step back. You know?

Juli Bauer: That’s so true.

Kathleen: It’s not why we started doing this.

Juli Bauer: I totally have to check myself with that kind of stuff. Because I feel the exact same way.

Kathleen: Yeah.

Juli Bauer: How did you come up with the name, Carrie Bradshaw Lied?

Kathleen: Everyone asks this. I do have a little frequently asked questions tab on my blog, only because certain questions are asked frequently. Totally valid question. Essentially, I couldn’t wait to get out of college and start working. Again, I had this huge vision for myself. I minored in journalism. I’ve always loved to write, similar to a la the fictional Carrie Bradshaw. So I just thought that my life was going to be so fabulous. Once I started working, I was going to be going to get drinks, meeting new friends. Killing it at my job. Dressing so great. And then I realized I was getting paid nothing. I was like; I can pay my rent and maybe go out to eat. Or buy one thing. But I can’t shop, work, pay my rent, and go out with friends.

And, all my college friends were dispersed throughout the United States. It wasn’t like I was living somewhere with friends. I was starting completely fresh. And I was like, this actually sucks, and is really hard. And I thought it was just going to be so effortlessly; like an upgrade. It was really not an upgrade! And I was like, this is not at all what I thought it would be!

Juli Bauer: {laughing}

Kathleen: But what’s amazing is most people; it’s interesting because when I meet readers, I know what age bracket they’re in. Because some of them don’t even know who Carrie Bradshaw is. They’re like; what is that?

Juli Bauer: No! No! {laughs} That’s devastating. I just saw something on the Today show about how they were going to do a third movie, and Kim Cattrall won’t say yes because they won’t do something that she wants. So they’re not making a third movie, and I’m devastated!

Kathleen: What a bummer.

Juli Bauer: Yeah, come on Kim Cattrall. I wonder what she’s demanding?

Kathleen: I just love everything about that groups dynamic. And I think it is fun because those of us that have grown up watching this show, everyone kind of connects to at least one of the girls, if not multiple of them. So it’s one of those things; I really truly still love the show as much as I did back in college. So it’s been kind of fun.

Juli Bauer: Yeah. It’s just like Friends; it never gets old to watch any of the episodes, no matter how many times you’ve seen it.

Kathleen: 100%.

Juli Bauer: So, how often nowadays do you post on your site? And how do you come up with new content on a regular basis?

Kathleen: I aim to post three to five times a week. It kind of depends on whether I’m traveling or whatnot. Because I would really rather put more thoughtful copy and whatnot on there versus just throwing something up because I’m busy. So I try to post three to five times a week depending on the work flow.

And then as far as inspiration, I feel like I’m inspired everywhere. I’ve always loved clothes. My mom tells stories of when I was a toddler trying to wear her shoes around the house. I liked the way the heels sounded when I walked. Like, it goes way back.

Juli Bauer: Yeah. {laughs}

Kathleen: So I’ve always loved clothes. And I would dress my mom for events and stuff when I was in elementary school. So I’ve always loved it. And I’m inspired by things I see on TV. By just; we live close to a college campus, so there are young kids all over town with cool style. And I’m southern, living out in California, so I do have some of that southern style. But I’m so inspired by kind of that west coast, laid back, cool girl style.

I’m always joking that I’m trying to dress more cool. Because these kids are so cool out here! So I kind of feel like a little bit of everything. But I have a hard time when someone says, “Describe your style.” I have a hard time coming up with adjectives that describe. Because I feel like, similar to Carrie Bradshaw, I kind of dress however I feel that day. Some days it’s tom boy, and other days it’s super girly. It just kind of depends on my mood, you know?

Juli Bauer: Yeah. I feel like you have a very vast array of different looks. Whenever I look at your Instagram, you always have something new and something that someone can identify with. Maybe they’re like; ok. I could never wear a crop top. But then you have this amazing bell sleeved top. You always have different kinds of looks, so it’s really cool to see what you’re constantly coming up with. I love your outfits.

And who; I know your husband takes your photos sometimes and then you have a photographer as well?

Kathleen: Yeah. So we started out, Christian actually probably wants to kick himself. Because doing more fashion-y photography was actually his idea three or four years ago. He was like; you should really kind of elevate this and maybe stop putting up garbage and maybe take it seriously.

Juli Bauer: {laughs}

Kathleen: See what happens. And I was like, oh, alright. How would I do that? And he was like, I’ll take your photos. So we got a camera, and he and I shot together. Especially when I was working fulltime, we had to shoot on the weekends. And he has two weekends off a month with his schedule, so he would help me out. I did promise him; I was like, if I take this fulltime. Because you’re like; hey, I’m going to leave my steady job that I also love with benefits and a 401K to just see what happens with the internet. Cross my fingers, you know?

Juli Bauer: {laughs} Mm-hmm.

Kathleen: So I was like; I promise, if I do this fulltime, I will find a photographer and take some of that off your plate. So that’s actually been a huge blessing. I found a photographer here in Orange County who is fabulous, and he helps me out during the week. So Christian will help me out in a pinch and when we travel, but Vincent does help me create the majority of my content now. Which has been a real blessing.

Juli Bauer: Yeah. He does great photography. Your photos have looked awesome. And I love hearing this from different fashion bloggers out there. When I went to the Reward Style conference, and just hearing how they take their photos. How do you do yours? Because I’m guessing you pack kind of multiple outfits in your car. Do you change in your car? That’s what I do. I usually shoot five or six looks, and my clothes are all over the back of the car. It’s just a complete nightmare. So how do you shoot yours, and get them all done within a certain timeframe?

Kathleen: Yeah, so one reason I do love shooting with Christian is because when he and I would shoot together; or even still sometimes when we do, it’s a much more, “Hey let’s go to dinner tonight. Can you shoot my outfit?” 20 minutes before, which is so nice because it does feel like; that’s what I originally did years ago. It more like; this is actually what I wore two nights ago. But of course now it’s different. And it makes much more sense to just crank it out every other week. So I do try to schedule; I’ll schedule some time with Vincent, put together some looks and change in my car. Which does not have tinted windows.

Juli Bauer: {laughs}

Kathleen: So he’ll hold up a reflector and lean against the window while I’m changing. And he’s like, “Girl! I think this whole town has seen what you look like without your clothes on!” And I’m like, tragically it’s probably true. I need to tint these windows immediately. So, I apologize to anyone in Oldtown Orange, where I live, if I have offended you by potentially flashing you from the backseat of my car.

Juli Bauer: {laughing} I’m sure they weren’t unhappy about it.

Kathleen: You know, what’s crazy is I used to be so modest. And now I laugh because I’m like; forget that. I’m literally like; hey can someone hold up a blanket so I can change real quick? Like, who do I think I am? That is insane.

Juli Bauer: {laughing} I know. I change in my car too. Thankfully my back windows have tint on them, but I’ve just stopped caring. I tried to lean over before and kind of hide it. And I’m just like, I don’t care. I need to get these damn photos done. I don’t care!

Kathleen: Right. And I’m always like; guess what? I look the same without clothes on as the next girl. We all look the same. It’s fine. You’ve seen it before. It’s fine.

Juli Bauer: It’s so true. So true. So, with all the different outfits that you take photos with, how often do you try to post on social media? I’m guessing like Instagram is probably your main go-to. Everybody has; you’ll forward it onto Twitter or Facebook. But how many times a day are you trying to post on social media? And, social media sucks because now they have the algorithm, and nobody sees sh*t anymore! I’m so sad when I go to your profile and I haven’t seen like most of your looks on there. It’s so frustrating.

Kathleen: I know. I’ve actually done the same thing. I do the same thing to the accounts I love. I did that to yours the other day. I went, and I was like; oh my gosh! I haven’t seen half of these recipes or outfits.

Juli Bauer: I know.

Kathleen: So I’m just liking like crazy. But I try to post once or twice a day. It kind of depends, again, how much content I have. How much stuff is going on. You know, that’s the thing with Instagram. Similar to blogging, we all started Instagram really kind of sharing our life as it happens. And it’s really taken more of a Pinterest-y turn, you know?

Juli Bauer: Yeah. Yeah.

Kathleen: Which I guess is just called adapting and evolving with the internet as it continues to grow. But sometimes I’m just like; wow, I feel like a real hypocrite. Because I actually haven’t put on makeup in three days, but I’m acting like I’m in New York in stilettos!

Juli Bauer: {laughing} I know. It’s so true.

Kathleen: Sometimes it just kind of depends on my mood. If I’m like; the truth is I’m still in yesterday’s sweatpants. I think I’m going to skip posting today. It just kind of depends on what’s going on. But I do try to post twice a day. That’s the goal.

Juli Bauer: Yeah. And have you had to deal with many trolls of your many years on the internet and on social media?

Kathleen: Yeah. I think; it kind of comes in waves. Sometimes I feel like there’s a nice stretch of time where it’s all good vibes and positive. And sometimes I’m just kind of like; oh snap! People be coming at me!

Juli Bauer: Yeah. How do you deal with them?

Kathleen: Everyone has an opinion, which is fine. That’s just the way it’s always been. And I think, sometimes there is constructive criticism, which actually can be really helpful. But I think when you put yourself out there, negativity is just kind of par for the course. And I’m always like; well, what’s the alternative? I could not put myself out there, not have this job, and then no one would care. But I want to take risks, because with risks come reward. And you kind of just has to take it as it comes. And my thoughts are; I’m always like, the fact that anyone really cares enough to talk sh*t about me is kind of flattering.

Juli Bauer: {laughs} So true. That is such a good way to look at it.

Kathleen: It’s like, all the people you admire have people that don’t like them.

Juli Bauer: Mm-hmm.

Kathleen: So as your audience grows, it’s kind of impossible to please everyone. So I just kind of feel like it’s unavoidable.

Juli Bauer: Yeah. That’s very true. I like that. I need to remember that.

Kathleen: Yeah. I think it’s just learning not to let it, you know; do you think Lady Gaga cares if I don’t like her? Which I actually love her. But you know what I’m saying?

Juli Bauer: {laughs} Yeah.

Kathleen: She doesn’t care. And I’m not saying that I’m Lady Gaga, by any means.

Juli Bauer: {laughing}

Kathleen: It’s like; the people you admire, they don’t care that much if people are talking about them. So why should I let it affect me. Unless it’s constructive, of course. And you can take something from it, which is valid.

Juli Bauer: I loved the other day when you did your Instagram stories of all your favorite Lady Gaga looks.

Kathleen: Oh, man.

Juli Bauer: You were going back through time.

Kathleen: Oh my gosh. My mom’s an artist. And since I was tiny, she would just say; dare to be different. Dare to be different. She was all about not doing what everyone else was doing. I always have remembered that. Because you know; we all think that people are thinking about us and what we’re up to. Guess what; no one is, ok? Everyone is too busy thinking about themselves.

Juli Bauer: Mm-hmm! {laughs}

Kathleen: So do what you want to do; you know?

Juli Bauer: So true!

Kathleen: Lady Gaga is like that. She’s like; don’t care. I’m going to do me. And I love it!

Juli Bauer: The best. She’s the best.

Kathleen: She’s great.

Juli Bauer: So what are; kind of still staying on the blog stuff; what are some of the favorite brands that you’ve had the opportunity to work with? And just some of the brands that you love to wear yourself? Hopefully get to work with as well {laughs} because that’s always awesome.

Kathleen: You know, I think what’s really cool and challenging about blogging. Which I’m sure you understand completely. Is brands and businesses are starting to kind of understand the power of digital influencers and social media people and whatnot. So they’re starting to catch on and kind of add that budget into their campaign for future released products and whatnot. But with that means sometimes they get hiring a model and hiring an influencer confused.

For example; I think it’s hard as a blogger, because what we do is we share our honest opinion, and we put our spin on something that will resonate with our audience. But they sometimes want to control it a little bit. And it ends up stunting your creative freedom to kind of do what you do. So I think that push-pull has kind of been a new challenge I’ve really noticed this year with more of; no, no, no, you can’t tell me what to say. I get to say things how I want to say them.

Juli Bauer: Yeah. Absolutely.

Kathleen: And I think they’re learning, but it’s become a little bit more of a challenge this year. But it’s cool because it means that brands really are recognizing the power of using some of these influencer-truth tellers. Which is a really cool turn. And with that, favorite brands that maybe I’ve worked with before that trust me that allow me; they just will say, “Hey, we want you to do what you do and style this dress. But do it however you want; just please make sure to include that it’s available at this website and use this hashtag.” And I’m like, that’s my favorite. Because then I can really get inspired and do something that I think really reflects not only my personal style, but something that I think my readers can resonate with and put together themselves.

So I really love, living out west I really love You-Me Kim.

Juli Bauer: Ok.

Kathleen: She does a lot of really beautiful maxi dresses and prints and kind of flowy, feminine pieces. I really love Parker New York. They have a little bit more polished, maybe East Coast style. But very cool and beautiful pieces. Who else do I really love right now? I’ve just discovered Agolde, I hope I’m saying that correctly; their denim. Which is a Los Angeles denim brand. Apparently LA is like the denim capital of the US. Probably not the world. But it’s like, tons of denim brands are based in LA. Which is pretty cool. And denim is such a huge thing out west. I feel like we wear jeans every day. To work, to church; everything.

Juli Bauer: Yeah. Yeah.

Kathleen: I love their jeans. I really love consignment finds, and Etsy finds. Kind of finding those unique pieces. I feel like I don’t shop vintage as much as I used to, because it kind of pisses off my readers. Which is valid. Because I’m like; “A one of a kind skirt!” And they’re like, well I can’t find that anywhere. Why would you show that?

Juli Bauer: Totally!

Kathleen: You know. I’m like; dang it, they’re so right. But I would wear a lot more consignment and vintage pieces if I wasn’t blogging, for sure.

Juli Bauer: I had a reader once complain about that. They were like; I wish you talked more about second hand stores or local stores. I’m like, I totally get that. But then nobody else can buy it, or it’s a very, very limited population in Denver. So that’s not fun for the reader. So it’s hard to kind of find that balance. I really love the company Thread Up, and have their consignment stuff online. It’s just such a huge database for everybody.

Kathleen: Totally. And I have gotten some really cool nice pieces at a major discount at consignment stores. So I really encourage that. I remember when I wasn’t really blogging to the degree that I am now, I would shop those kinds of places all the time and have pieces that I still really hold onto and value that I got a major deal on.

Juli Bauer: Same. I’m totally with you.

Kathleen: If you’re in Orange County, all the Corona Del Mar consignment shops are bomb. Just saying.

Juli Bauer: So you are moving soon. How soon are you moving?

Kathleen: I am moving; so basically, Christian, my husband, is doing his medical fellowship in ear, nose, and throat and head and neck surgery. So it’s a 5-year program after med school. And you interview for your fellowship if you want to do one in your fourth year. It’s like a school year. So we found out this summer that we would be moving to San Francisco while he pursues facial, plastic, and reconstructive surgery. But it’s based on a school year, so we won’t really move until May or June. But I announced it, because I shared he was interviewing. But I, just in turn, have confused everyone. Because everyone’s like; you’re moving next month, right? Because I announced it in the summer. So I really kind of screwed myself there. But we don’t move until summer. So we’ve got to finish out the school year.

Juli Bauer: Yeah. I cannot imagine. So I want to talk about San Francisco, because I had a reader ask about that. But what has it been like being married; I’m guessing you’ve been with your husband throughout this entire process, since you guys met in college. So what has it been like to be married to a medical student, now a doctor, having to move and change where you’re living based on that. What has that been like?

Kathleen: So, what’s interesting is I feel like I kind of have a biased viewpoint. My dad is a gastroenterologist; my brother-in-law is a pediatrician; my brother is a radiation oncologist, and my husband is in head and neck surgery. So I kind of have a lot of family members in the medical field. My sister is a dietician. So I feel like I grew up kind of knowing; you know, my dad’s patients came first. You know? My ballet recital was never going to come first. {laughs} Which, now I’m like, that’s fine. But I think it’s kind of something that I grew up with. It was the norm for me.

I think that some of these resident and med school wives and girlfriends that I’ve spoken with that reach out to me with questions and whatnot; they probably grew up with a dad who worked at a bank or something and was home for dinner every night. Which is great. You know? But I think that I am probably a little bit more understanding, only because I grew up with my dad being on call every other weekend. And my mom trying to keep us upstairs on Christmas day until noon, because my dad was getting a chicken bone out of someone’s throat, you know?

Juli Bauer: {laughs}

Kathleen: That was the norm for us. Just stay, 20 more minutes! So Christian and I, we met in college. I knew he wanted to go to medical school then, and secretly hoping he would change his mind just because I knew how long that road would be. But we dated all through med school and then got married. And moved to California about four or five months later for his fellowship.

And I think that, again, I did a blog post about advice for those with kind of husbands that work a lot, or boyfriends, or whatnot. And I think that for me, the one thing that helps me stay patient through this extremely long road. I think, it’s 4 years of college, 4 years of med school, 5 years of residency, and then a year long fellowship. So I’m like; my poor husband is going to be like 33 before he has his first job, you know? It’s crazy.

But I just remind myself that 9 times out of 10, the patient needs him more than I need him. You know? My car doesn’t crank in a parking lot. Well, AAA can help me. Because whoever is in the hospital, because they have shattered bones in their face, kind of needs his help more right now. And he has such a gift to be able to help other people in that way, and especially in emergency type scenarios. I feel like I’m constantly telling myself, that person needs him more than I do. And it helps to be a little more understanding.

Because sure there are times. I can’t even tell you how many couples things I show up to alone. I actually; my friends out in Orange County thought I was catfishing them that I was even married. Because one of my best friends here didn’t even meet him until she and I had been friends for about a year and a half.

Juli Bauer: Yeah. Yeah. I can completely relate to that. My husband works Monday through Saturday. And I go to almost all of our friend events alone. And people think that maybe I don’t like my husband or I don’t want to bring him around or something. But he is just always gone.

But I think having a blog, and always having some kind of project to work on, is pretty helpful. Because if you only worked till 4 or 5 and then you come home, and then you’re sitting around because you’re not working on any other work. I think it can get more upsetting than it needs to. I think the blog has been really helpful. At least for me for that.

Kathleen: I totally agree. And my friends who blog who have husbands that have more flexible schedules, I find that sometimes they’re like; oh my gosh, how did you get all that done? And I’m like, because you got to go have drinks and dinner with your cute boyfriend or husband. Christian doesn’t even get home till 9:30 on a Friday. So I just keep working.

Juli Bauer: Exactly.

Kathleen: I found that that’s helped me business-wise, just because I work a lot. Because you always have something to work on. So I completely agree with you. And it’s been nice that both of us have kind of ended up being workaholics.

Juli Bauer: I know. I know. And especially when you’re younger in life and you still can do that and you don’t have as many responsibilities with children. You might as well just kick some ass at work. And so maybe you can even retire earlier. That’s what I always try to tell myself.

Kathleen: I like that mindset. I’m going to adopt that. Thank you.

Juli Bauer: {laughs} So what are some of the things you’re most looking forward to about San Francisco?

Kathleen: Christian is so excited. He interviewed, I think it ended up being like 13 places all over the US. And so, we really could have been anywhere between San Francisco and New York. And all these places in between. He is so excited; we’re both really excited to be able to stay in California a little bit longer, and kind of explore northern California, which is so beautiful. I love the weather up there, just crisp, cool.

I think we’re most excited about walking places. The walkability of the city. Just something; LA, Orange County, there are little neighborhoods that are walkable, but it’s not really that walkable like a lot of these East Coast cities are. So I think we’re really excited about just being able to walk and grab dinner, have a drink, and not worry about having to catch an Uber. You can just stroll on home.

Juli Bauer: Totally. And really good exercise, since you’re constantly just going up and down hills.

Kathleen: That is very true. That’s a very good point.

Juli Bauer: You don’t even need a gym membership. {laughs}

Kathleen: I have a studio here that I love a lot that I’ll be sad to miss. But I’m really excited. It’s always fun. Christian and I have been married for about 5 years. We’ve been together 10. So it’s always fun to explore something new with your partner, you know? It’s just fun.

Juli Bauer: Yeah. Has it been pretty easy; how long have you lived in Orange?

Kathleen: This is our fifth year in Orange County.

Juli Bauer: Was it pretty easy to make friends in Orange, or is it kind of a younger town since you have college there. How was it, making friends there?

Kathleen: I feel like, honestly. When I first moved here, I really hit the jackpot, and I know not everyone can do this. But I worked in events and social media for Urban Decay cosmetics headquarters, which is here at Newport Beach. And there are so many young, awesome girls that worked there. So I just instantly made friends at work, which was amazing. And a lot of them were girls that grew up in the area, so they had tons of advice and recommendations.

And so I found it pretty easy. Everyone’s like; oh you came from Mississippi, the hospitality state, to California. How is that transition? My brother is in LA with his family. And I think for them, they can speak much more to Southern to West Coast transition. But for us in Orange County, it’s a bunch of beach towns so people are pretty mellow. Pretty chill. Pretty happy. And I feel like you kind of get what you put out, you know? So if you’re friendly and warm, 9 times out of 10 people are friendly and warm right back.

So I think because the transition has actually been shockingly pretty great. Easy. But I think Christian and I both are; not only independent but pretty open minded and adventurous living different places. So we were just excited. And we were both from Mississippi, went to college there. So even if we had matched anywhere; I mean, North Dakota. We would have been excited to go up to North Dakota, see what it’s about. We kind of were just game for an adventure.

Juli Bauer: That’s awesome. That’s so exciting. We always talk about moving somewhere else, and it’s so fun to just think about starting in a whole new place and having new restaurants and new studios and new people to see. That will be so much fun.

Kathleen: Yeah, but Denver rules!

Juli Bauer: It does. That’s why we haven’t moved away anywhere yet. Because I really love Denver.

Kathleen: Are you from Colorado, as well?

Juli Bauer: I am, yeah. Born and raised.

Kathleen: So lucky!

Juli Bauer: I know. The only other place we would really want to move is Austin so we could be on a lake. And Denver has pretty much everything other than a lake.

Kathleen: Yeah. Because you guys are all sportsy and good at those water sports and things aren’t you.

Juli Bauer: I am not. My husband is very good at them. He was a wakeboarder growing up. So he loves that sh*t, and I just act like I do so I can hang out with him. {laughs}

Kathleen: That’s so cute. I love it.

Juli Bauer: So I met some awesome San Francisco bloggers. That blogging scene there, they are super tight and all hang out. So then you’ll have instant friends when you move there of that little scene.

Kathleen: Yeah, I was in New York recently and met a few Bay area/San Francisco girls. And they’re so nice! They are so fun and nice. So I’m really excited. Again, they’re like, we can’t wait to have you up here! I just feel so lucky that they’re willing to embrace me.

Juli Bauer: Totally.

Kathleen: They’re all super cool.

Juli Bauer: When I went to the conference, I knew no one. And I had nobody to hang out with, and was the awkward turtle at all the parties, just standing with a cocktail by myself. And those girls, the last night, just took me under their wing. They’re like; this poor girl. Let’s just hold her hand through this. They are all so, so nice. You will love them.

Kathleen: I am so impressed you went alone. Going to blogger things alone can feel; it’s like going to junior high. The first day of junior high all over again.

Juli Bauer: 100%. It’s like; all beautiful girls who have amazing outfits who, it’s almost this competitive feeling in a way because you’re all doing that same job. But they all have friends, so it’s not competitive. It’s just if you don’t have a friend in that community you feel like such an outsider. Oh my gosh, I was so intimidated the whole time.

Kathleen: Good for you for going, though! That shows how, what a boss to just show up and figure it out.

Juli Bauer: I know. I was so sad you weren’t there when I saw, I’m forgetting her name, but it’s Hot off the Rack.

Kathleen: Oh I love her. Jen. She’s the best.

Juli Bauer: Yes! I met her and she was so friendly, so nice. And so when I saw her, I was like, oh maybe you’ll be there. Because you’ve been on many trips with these girls.

Kathleen: Yeah. What’s cool is that I have kind of found a little group of girls, and we all jive very well. We’re all around the same age. We’ve all been blogging for about the same amount of time. So we’ve all become real friends, not just work friends. It’s like; we get together and sometimes don’t talk about blogging at all. We talk about life and our husbands and pets and whatever. So I managed to really make some solid friendships, and I kind of stick with that crew just because there’s a huge trust and just easiness.

We all travel really well together, so we tend to kind of rope each other into travel opportunities and collaborations. Just because, not only do we have a lot of fun together, it’s really natural and easy. But even physically, we have different styles. And we’re all different heights, and different skin tones, and different hair colors. So even when we’re together, I feel like there’s something for everyone. We appeal to different types of people.

Juli Bauer: Absolutely. How did you guys; did you guys just start talking over the internet? Kind of how you and I did?

Kathleen: Yeah. So one of the gals lives here in Orange County, Nicky. Her blog is My Style Diaries.

Juli Bauer: Oh, yeah.

Kathleen: She is from Louisiana. So we met out in Orange County, and we were like; obviously we need to be friends. Because she is a riot. She’s hysterical. Because she’s from Louisiana, she kind of knew these two Louisiana girls, Crystal and Jen. And so we were in New York back in 2014, I think, and all ended up having dinner together one night. And I think; you know when you make those friends and you’ve hung out for a couple of minutes, and you’re like; well this is obviously going to be a friendship. You know? This is a thing.

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Kathleen: So it was kind of like a match made in heaven. And since then, we’ve slowly started planning things together. And now it’s like a no brainer. We just have so much fun together. It’s really been; those were relationships in any job are some of the most valuable things you take from any job you have, you know.

Juli Bauer: Yeah, absolutely. And that’s so cool when you can find them when you’re not just working with them in the same office every single day. When you can still find them over the internet and create that friendship. Especially when you guys aren’t living in the same city, and you still make those trips happen. That’s awesome.

Kathleen: Yeah. It’s been fun. And that’s definitely something I do miss a lot about my corporate jobs. Just coworkers, that comradery. When you have an idea, and you can kind of build off of it because they make your idea better with their input. So being alone, and I’m sure you can relate to this. When you work alone all the time, it’s like you end up looking at your dog, and you’re like; this is a cool idea, right?

Juli Bauer: {laughs} Totally. Oh my gosh, 100%.

Kathleen: There’s feedback. Yeah.

Juli Bauer: So what is one of the most fun or coolest places you’ve traveled? And it can be with that group of girls, or just on your own that you’ve blogged about?

Kathleen: Oh wow. I think one of my favorite trips so far out here is probably Christian and I went to Hawaii. And we’ve been to Maui, and then we went to Kauai. I really want to go to the big island, but I don’t know if we’ll make it back. But we went to Kauai, and I was just so overwhelmed with the majestic beauty of that island. It’s so incredible. It was like walking in Jurassic Park. It was so lush, and I just felt so small. Like a small, small piece of this world. But it was such an overwhelming beauty. I knew it was going to be beautiful, but it really kind of took me by surprise. And I still, I have moments from that trip that I still remember just feeling overwhelmed with how gorgeous it was.

Juli Bauer: That’s on my list of places to go. I was thinking of doing that for my 30th birthday, maybe. Somewhere in Hawaii. Whether it’s Kauai or Maui. Because I’ve heard amazing things about both.

Kathleen: I would recommend it. You go there and you’re like; how on earth is this a part of the United States? It’s just, it blows your mind.

Juli Bauer: A whole other world.

Kathleen: It’s so gorgeous.

Juli Bauer: How do you feel when you’re on these trips and you want to get any swimsuit photos? How do you feel; do you find a place where nobody is so you feel less embarrassed, or are you just pretty comfortable at it at this point?

Kathleen: You know, what embarrasses me most is that people think that I think I’m a model.

Juli Bauer: {laughs} Yes!

Kathleen: You know what I mean; like I think I’m going to be submitting these. You know what I’m saying? I’m just going to carry a sign that says, “I’m an amateur, and I’m aware.” You know?

Juli Bauer: {laughing}

Kathleen: So the embarrassment never quits. Especially when I’m shooting with Vincent, my photographer here who is such a blast, he’s just a lot of fun in general so we have a lot of fun with it. When I shoot with Christian; Christian is not taking photos of me because he is eager to do it and loves it. He’s doing it because he loves me and I’m asking him to do it. You know what I mean?

Juli Bauer: Totally. Yeah.

Kathleen: I appreciate him, regardless. But he also is embarrassed that he’s having to lay down on the sand while I pretend that I’m something special you know?

Juli Bauer: {laughing} Well that’s awesome he would lay down on the sand. Because my husband would be like, are you f*cking serious? Get out of here. No. No! {laughs}

Kathleen: Well, what he and I typically do on trips. And sometimes we take trips and I’m not working with the hotel, I’m just going and paying like I would to go anywhere. We won’t work, because there’s no point in working. I don’t have to work, so I won’t. But other times when you work in collaboration with a hotel, or a travel company, and there’s an expectation to deliver content. He and I will choose; alright, we’re going to be at this place for four or five days. What’s our shoot day? And we’ll pick a day and then we’re both on the same page that this is a work day, and we’re just going to get content and power through. So then we can take the next day to just chill by the pool or actually have vacation. Because it’s life.

Juli Bauer: I love that. That’s such a good idea.

Kathleen: Yeah. Well a lot of these places we would never have the opportunity to go if it wasn’t a work opportunity. So you have to work. But I find that if you dedicate a block of time like that, you’re both on the same page. Then you don’t complain, you just power through. And you can chill together after. But I typically try to get the work stuff done in the beginning of a trip. Just go, get it done. And then you can enjoy kind of the last leg of it. Which is what we try to do and it typically works well for us.

Juli Bauer: That’s so smart. I’m going to definitely remember that moving forward. So I was on your site just checking it out, seeing what kind of new stuff you had and I read your recent post about self-esteem. And that’s something I talk about on my blog all the time and on my podcast constantly, because I think as women, especially in a social media world now, we have a huge issue with comparison and self-doubt, and talking down to ourselves. And for me, I’m very much in the fitness world. So my explore page is females working out in underwear, pretty much. And it’s all ass to face video. It’s just too much. So the more I see that, the more I start questioning my own self and I have to kind of check myself, and say; ok, you are more than what is just on the internet. You have more self-worth than that.

Can you kind of talk about why you put out this post about self-esteem and why you put yourself out there in that way, and just talk about what that post is about for anybody who hasn’t seen it.

Kathleen: Yeah. I totally agree with you. I think that the internet is both a beautiful and terrible thing. And it’s all about perspective and how; we control the way we think. We control the way we think about ourselves, we control the kind of content we consume. It’s all in our control. And it’s not like one day you wake up and say; I love myself, and I now love myself forever. It’s like a constant reminder. I feel like it’s something you have to constantly check in on and keep up on in order to have a healthy balance, with self-love and self-esteem and just awareness of who you are to your core.

And I think I went to fashion week this year. It was my, I don’t know, fourth or fifth time to go. And truthfully, I didn’t even want to go. My friend kind of talked me into it. Because I was like, I don’t know. I don’t feel inspired or motivated to go. I’ve just been doing a huge website redesign, which ended up being a much larger project than I anticipated. Which kind of zapped a lot of my creativity this summer. So I was like, I’m just not feeling it.

But she convinced me to go, and I love her, so I was like alright, fine I’ll go. So I kind of went with this; you know. You’re here, slap on a smile, make it worth your time. And I think because I just, in my heart, didn’t really want to be there, I kind of, it was like I’d always seen the world of blogging and whatnot with rose tinted glasses. And it was like, all of a sudden on this trip the glasses, I didn’t have them anymore {laughs}. So I just was like; I just don’t know if this is me anymore. I don’t know. It doesn’t mean the same thing. I don’t know.

As this industry continues to grow and evolve, it’s causing me to stop and really think; what am I doing this for? In my mind, I just am always trying to get more readers, more followers, more, more, more, versus stopping to appreciate and value the readers and followers I have. I need to stop chasing what I don’t have and learn to just appreciate and tend to the beautiful group of people that actually spend their time to connect with me. What a gift. To value that instead of always chasing down what I currently don’t have.

So it just kind of caused me to step back and kind of see things from a different perspective and really evaluate; I think that we all create. The purpose of the blog is to give value to people. That’s the whole purpose to blogging, is to provide a value to whoever chooses to read it. And I just want to always make sure that my audience, or whoever chooses to read Carrie Bradshaw Lied understands that I am just like everyone else. You know? You might see pictures of me in a swimsuit on a beach, but you don’t know the backstory of that. The fact that I had to try three different angles, because there was cellulite on my thigh.

Juli Bauer: Mm-hmm.

Kathleen: You know what I mean? That’s the truth. And I think sometimes we don’t share the truth enough. And it’s not necessarily about being self-deprecating all the time. But really creating a healthy space. Where it’s like, I’m just trying to do the best with what I have. I’m not perfect. I’ve never claimed to be perfect. But I’m really just trying to stop and not only appreciate who I am and what I have, but appreciate you guys that you take the time to read this, and hopefully take something from it.

And it was just such a beautiful unexpected connection to so many women that are in all different phases of life and live all different places who have kind of have those moments of self-doubt. And you know, I think that you constantly have to check yourself. And sometimes, I can go 9 months, a year feeling like a hot tamale. And other times, I’m just like; I don’t want to get out of bed today. You know?

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Kathleen: And I think we all feel that way. So just kind of humanizing it, and just connecting with other women in that way was actually a really freaking cool thing. And it reminded me; that is actually the power of blogging that we all have that sometimes we forget to share. And I think the fact that you share your story with body image and food and that relationship, and you’ve shared that on your podcast. I’ve listened to it. It’s an amazing story and journey. And how much you’ve grown from that place. Your entire viewpoint has changed completely since you were in high school.

Juli Bauer: Yeah. And that’s, I think, what helped me grow my blog in the first place. Was sharing that insecurity that I had at one point way back in the day. And seeing how many people connected with it, when I was sharing all these other posts and no one was really talking back. And then you share that insecurity and that “ugly” thing about you, just saying I have doubts. And then all these other people come forward. And you’re like; ok. People are real out in the world other than just my friends. It’s amazing what just showing your true personality can really bring into your own space.

And what I love about you; you share these beautiful photos, and such amazing content. But then on your Instagram stories, you’re exactly who you are in your daily life. And you’re talking about the things that you’re going through. And you’re talking about; what did you have to do with your house?

Kathleen: Oh my gosh. Even right now, as we speak, they’re hammering. I hope you can’t hear them. Hammering on the walls outside.

Juli Bauer: Because you had to fumigate, right?

Kathleen: Yeah. We were kicked out of our house for three days. And I have all these freaking animals! I’ve got a parking lot cat, a 90-pound dog. I’m trying to find somewhere for us to live. So stupid. Just a bunch of stupid stuff.

Juli Bauer: Such a nightmare.

Kathleen: There’s such a fine balance between being relatable and also not complaining.

Juli Bauer: Yeah. Exactly.

Kathleen: I don’t want people to think I’m ungrateful, but I also feel it’s really important to humanize some of these feelings and times that we all have. So I think that’s a fine balance. I don’t even know that I’ve necessarily found it. But I’m always trying to be a truth teller, but not a complainer. Which is really difficult. {laughs}

Juli Bauer: Well I think that is the fine balance in everything. It’s like; you’re not trying to pull compliments in. You’re just sharing your experience because you know others go through that. But it’s definitely that fine balance.

But I wanted to ask you a couple of questions before we kind of summed it up. Every time I see you on social media, I’m always like; Damn. Her legs are so beautiful! And I had somebody on my social media ask, what do you do for exercise? How do you stay in shape?

Kathleen: Oh my gosh. First of all, you’re super nice. I’m so self-conscious about my legs.

Juli Bauer: I am too! {laughs}

Kathleen: I’m always trying to slim them up, because I have these basketball player legs from high school.

Juli Bauer: That’s the best. It’s in, you know.

Kathleen: You know what, they are what they are. They’re here to stay.

Juli Bauer: Yes. Exactly!

Kathleen: So I might as well get used to them. But I have become, I think when I was out of college, a couple of years out of college, I discovered reformer Pilates and fell in love. Because I think everyone’s body is different, and everyone is looking for something different when they exercise. And I used to do a lot of aerobics classes. I forget the name. I’ve tried TRX, and Pure Bar, yoga and all these different things. Kickboxing. Spinning. And I really love them all. I like mixing it up. But something about Pilates; I kind of have a bad back from 6 years of cheerleading, and I get knots in my back. And I just felt like I was exercising, I was stretching. And I would leave Pilates feeling better than I do after a massage.

Juli Bauer: Wow.

Kathleen: I just love the way it made me feel. It made me feel slender, strong, relaxed. And so I’ve actually started doing Pilates plus; which is Pilates 2.0. it’s a little bit more; instead of just stretching on the machine, you’re actually doing lunges and squats on the machine. So it’s a little bit more of a pickup from just regular Pilates. And I really love it, because I feel like it makes me challenge those muscles that I don’t necessarily use all the time. I feel like Pilates is kind of home base for me. But I still love a spin class, or just a jog with the dog. I try to mix it up. But I do find myself always going back to Pilates.

Juli Bauer: And how often do you try to go?

Kathleen: I try to go two or three times a week. It usually just depends on my travel schedule. So it’s like, there have been months where I’m there two or three times a week consistently. And then I’ll try to sprinkle in walks with my dog, or 20 minutes of arm exercises via YouTube. Some YouTube workouts and stuff. I try to go two or three times a week. But sometimes when I’m traveling, I’m like; oh my gosh, I haven’t been to Pilates in two weeks. When I go it’s going to be so painful.

Juli Bauer: And I know you just said walking your dog; that’s the main thing I do to get out of the house. So how do you stay. When you’re working from home, how do you stay motivated during the day? Especially when your husband is maybe working until 9 at night when you didn’t plan that to happen. How do you stay motivated, and make sure you brush your teeth {laughs}? Because some days I’m like; sh*t, it’s 3 p.m. and I haven’t brushed my teeth yet. But how do you make sure you kind of stay on schedule? What do you do to keep yourself in a timely manner that the days don’t blend together completely?

Kathleen: Yeah. I do feel working in an office for so many years before blogging full time really kind of helped me create a strong discipline and kind of like structure. I’m a pretty disciplined person. However, I kind of found with blogging or with working from home what tends to be most effective for me is I wake up, I start working immediately. I’m tackling emails; normally I’m doing more like email type work in the morning. And then I’ll have lunch, and I’ll run any errands. That’s my time where I’m like; I am blessed. I get to go to the grocery store before everyone leaves the office at 5. So I should go now, when it’s not full of these former Kathleen’s trying to go to the grocery after work.

So I’ll use that time to kind of run errands. And then in the afternoon, I try to leave my email down, not check emails, and work on content. Whether that’s editing photos, writing blog posts, that kind of a thing. Email, break, create content, and then I’ll start cooking dinner. Which I love your website, because I’m always trying to kind of; I did Whole30 years ago. So I love kind of staying with that vegetables, high protein type diet. So you have so many amazing recipes.

Juli Bauer: Oh that’s so cool! You have recipes on your website as well, don’t you?

Kathleen: I do. I don’t do as much as I’d like to. I should do more. Because I cook all the time. Because really, as you clearly know. If you’re trying to know what you’re eating and be healthy, you’ve got to make it yourself.

Juli Bauer: Yeah. For sure.

Kathleen: It’s just really hard to be like; I really want to commit to eating healthy, but I don’t want to cook. That’s really, really hard to do. So I’ve kind of learned how to cook over the years. And Christian very much appreciates it. You know, I’m from the south, so food is love.

Juli Bauer: Totally. Totally. That’s how I show my affection for my husband, is cooking for him.

Kathleen: Yeah. I know. How lucky are they?

Juli Bauer: Right? Oh my gosh. I have to remind him at times. I’m like; dude, when was the last time you cooked? Do you even remember? I don’t think he knows how to go grocery shopping anymore. {laughs}

Kathleen: You were like a bomb cook before you guys got married, so he knew exactly how lucky he is.

Juli Bauer: {laughs}

Kathleen: I can’t cook like you do, but I can try to copy you. And that’s what I do.

Juli Bauer: No, I love seeing when you’re cooking up recipes. And you share that on your Instagram stories sometimes, when you’re cooking.

Kathleen: Yeah, I try to. I really do try to. Because everyone; I’m interested to see what everyone else is eating. I think when you cook, you always want to know what everybody else is cooking.

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Kathleen: So I do try to share what I’m cooking. Right now I’m trying to eat low carb, because I traveled so much in August, and I was like pizza, pasta, hit me up.

Juli Bauer: Totally.

Kathleen: So I’m trying to reverse some of that, and your site is so good for fulfilling yummy food but not carb heavy. Which I really appreciate.

Juli Bauer: Yes. Traveling; I’m traveling soon, and it’s so easy to go balls deep on carbs whenever you’re anywhere.

Kathleen: Well, who wants to go to some epic restaurant and get a salad? No one. You know? I want to get what they’re known for. So, I have such, I have a 10-pound range. Whenever I’m at the lower end of the 10 pounds, I haven’t traveled in like 6 weeks. And then whenever I’m traveling constantly. But it’s because I just YOLO too hard.

Juli Bauer: I know. It’s just so fun to when you’re in different places and traveling. It’s just; food is the best.

Kathleen: It’s so fun. And the problem is, my husband loves to eat. He’s 6’3”, and slim naturally. So he can chow down with no consequences. It really sucks for me. It’s really hard.

Juli Bauer: I know. I feel like that is the main story of most women out there that I hear. {laughs} Whenever I get emails, they’re like; my husband can eat whatever he wants and I hate him so much for it! I’m like, that is going to be the rest of your life.

Kathleen: Totally. It’s hard to be like; you go ahead and eat a whole pan of brownies. I’m just going to sit here and sip on my hot water with lemon. It’s so lame!

Juli Bauer: I know. We just had brownies yesterday. He ate so many. I was like, ok, cut yourself off Juli! You have to cut yourself off! They’re just the best.

Kathleen: Regret.

Juli Bauer: Ok. Last two questions. So someone asked, what are your favorite budget stores to shop at?

Kathleen: Yeah. I love some ZARA.

Juli Bauer: I wish we had ZARA out here! We don’t have it.

Kathleen: Yeah. And I do find their online site, I think, is a little challenging. Because it doesn’t; I find their site not as easily shoppable, however. If you can ever get into a store, they’re pretty great. But if you don’t have a ZARA, I love a good TJ Max. You never know what you can find in there. And sometimes, you go to your TJ Max, they’ve got designer things and I’ve gotten so many great things from TJ Max. All the name brand stuff that you would buy at a big retailer, but you get serious markdowns. So I’m a big fan of TJ Max and Marshalls, those type stores.

I do love an occasional Forever 21 visit.

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Kathleen: Forever 21. However.

Juli Bauer: If you’re ready to dig through everything, then it’s good to go.

Kathleen: Yeah, I agree. To pop in there from time to time and get a few fun things that you’re like; I may only wear this for a year, but it’s $30 and whatever. So I do love Forever 21, TJ Max, ZARA. Let me think, what else, what else. I feel like when I worked in office, I bought a lot of things from the GAP. Like, they have some really great, it’s almost like they’re not necessarily a pant, and they’re not necessarily a legging. They’re almost like a jegging, but they’re pants that you can actually wear to the office. I had 4 pair of them. And they’re stretchy, so comfortable. I feel like I would always shop at the GAP for great basics that I could kind of mix and match with my other stuff when I worked in an office. That was pretty great.

Banana Republic also was a great kind of a work friendly type thing. Those are some of my favorite stores for that. Again, I really can’t say enough consignment stores can be where it’s at.

Juli Bauer: Seriously.

Kathleen: I mean, really great things. So if you have any good consignment shopping in your area, I really would recommend you just spend a Saturday morning hopping in to see what they have.

Juli Bauer: And I feel like I remember you doing a post pretty recently. Didn’t you do a post about when you should splurge and when you should save on certain items? Did you do kind of a closet overhaul type of thing like that?

Kathleen: I did like five areas where I liked to splurge for designer. And with the exception of outerwear, like a great trench coat or a jacket that you can wear season after season, it’s usually in the accessories. Because, you know, shirts and pants get worn down after time. But a great watch, a great pair of earrings. Those don’t really wear down, you know what I mean? You can have them forever as long as you take care of them. A great handbag.

So there have been times; my photographer is so silly and funny. But he’s like; I’ll show up in an outfit, and he’s like, oh yes. You’re like, where Walmart meets Chanel.

Juli Bauer: {laughing}

Kathleen: I’m like, honestly that should probably offend me but it doesn’t. Because I literally have some things that probably came from Walmart, and I also have Chanel bags. I literally will wear Walmart with Chanel. Because it’s not even about where it came from, it’s how it makes you feel. And I think with the right accessories, it can take literally any outfit and elevate it to a more chic, luxe looking outfit.

Juli Bauer: that’s awesome. I love that. And I have looked at your items. You always have kind of a mixture in there of something maybe really expensive that you splurged on in an outfit. And then something that’s totally affordable. You always have a big range of that.

Kathleen: Oh, I know where else I like to shop. I’m not even joking, freaking Amazon. Amazon has really cute stuff. I recently was perusing, I ended up buying all these dresses. Free shipping, free returns, gets to you in two days. I was just like; who knew Amazon has a lot of great stuff. And usually it’s under $30, which is pretty amazing.

Juli Bauer: That’s awesome. I’ll need to check that out, because I need to make an Amazon order today anyways.

Kathleen: There you go.

Juli Bauer: Ok, last question. Who do you like to follow on social media the most? And it can be whoever. It could be someone famous. It could be a blogger. It could be a food blog. Anything.

Kathleen: So, my absolute favorite {laughs} Instagram account is probably not what you would think, is Best Vines.

Juli Bauer: Oh, I saw you post about that the other day. I’m writing that down right now. {laughs}

Kathleen: All it is just hilarious short videos. My husband and I have this routine where we will get in bed, it’s almost lights out, and I’m like; oh wait, I haven’t checked best vines today. And we’ll pull it up, and we’ll watch the four new videos of the day, and just laugh so hard. I actually have a whole saved collection that’s categorized on Instagram that just says LOL. And it’s videos, and just memes that I’ve saved that always make me laugh.

Juli Bauer: That’s awesome.

Kathleen: So that’s one of my favorite accounts. And I love the Dodo. And one of my readers told me about the account, Animals Doing Things.

Juli Bauer: Oh, ok. Writing that one down too.

Kathleen: And it’s just like, you know, they’re really cute animals or just stories about animals. I have a cat that I got from a parking lot years ago that now has three legs. And I’m obsessed with her. And it’s like; or either humans doing nice things for animals.

Juli Bauer: Yes!

Kathleen: The world is a good place, you know?

Juli Bauer: Those are the best.

Kathleen: I feel like people would think I would list fashion accounts. Of which I love. I love blog accounts, and I follow blog food, home décor, I love some gardening accounts which, what am I, 70 years old? But I love those too. But animal accounts and the funny videos and memes. Like, my therapist says. That’s another good meme account.

Juli Bauer: Oh, ok. Writing it down.

Kathleen: I guess I basically like to laugh and look at animals.

Juli Bauer: Yeah. Animals are the best. And you have an adorable dog, and a cat with three legs, right? I think it’s a good thing to end on how adorable your animals are.

Kathleen: Well Jackson is so cute too!

Juli Bauer: Oh thanks! He’s lying right here next to me. {laughs}

Kathleen: He has a pretty yummy face.

Juli Bauer: He’s so great.

Kathleen: Yeah. Bailey is 10. She’s our 10-year-old lab. Which I had been dating Christian for like 2 months. And he wanted me to help him pick out his puppy. So I helped him pick her out, having no idea that I was picking out my dog.

Juli Bauer: Aww!

Kathleen: Because we never broke up. And we then we got married, and now she lives with us, obviously. So I’m like, I had no idea that day that I really was picking out my dog.

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Kathleen: She’s 10, which is kind of cute. Because whenever she turns a year older, she kind of symbolizes how long we’ve been together. Because we’d been dating for a few months. So with every birthday, I’m like; oh my gosh I guess that means we’ve been together 10 years!

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Kathleen: She’s getting kind of; she’s a yellow lab so she’s getting, I call them highlights, but it’s really just white hair on her face.

Juli Bauer: Oh, I know! It’s so sad.

Kathleen: She’s getting some highlights. But I’m like, this dog, we literally bought her in the middle of a farm in Mississippi, and she’s now lived at the beach. She’s going to San Francisco. I’m like, you know, we’re just living it up.

Juli Bauer: Living the live.

Kathleen: I love this dog. And then I had too many margaritas with a friend of mine, and saw this black cat in a parking lot. And I was like, come here kitty, kitty! And she came right to me. And I didn’t even really like cats. But I was like, well this cat needs a home. And I found out she was a stray that had been living there. I don’t think she was someone’s cat, but she had been living in this parking lot getting leftovers from people from time to time. And it just broke my heart. She was a solid black cat, at the time she had four legs so she didn’t have any unique markings. It was near Thanksgiving, so it was going to be getting cold. So I just snatched her up and ended up falling in love with her. She’s since had a tumor, so we had to amputate one of her legs, but she’s still kicking it. She’s doing so good. So, yeah, give me a margarita and I’ll take home a stray pet.

Juli Bauer: Oh my gosh! That is so sad, but so cute at the same time.

Kathleen: She was an adult when I found her, and I’ve had such a positive experience adopting an adult pet. My mom adopted an adult pet now because she loves my cat so much.

Juli Bauer: Aww!

Kathleen: I’ve had the best experience. And I really kind of think in the future that’s the route I’ll take. Because when you meet an adult pet, you can kind of make sure your energy vibes with each other.

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Kathleen: You know exactly what you’re getting, you know.

Juli Bauer: Yeah, puppies are a sh*t show, that’s for sure.

Kathleen: and they’re all adorable, but how do you know they’re not going to be a turd when they grow up.

Juli Bauer: I know! A couple of my friends have dogs that are pretty big turds. We got so lucky that he is such a chill, cool dog. Except if foods around, then he’s a psycho. But, when people have dogs that are crazy for life, I’m like, how do you deal with that? In a house, and the dog is bounding on top of the table?

Kathleen: Yeah. I feel like all Frenchies are so good, though.

Juli Bauer: Yeah, he’s a good one for sure. They’re pretty cool dogs. He just sleeps on my chest most of the day.

Kathleen: So cute. The best coworker you could ask for!

Juli Bauer: It is so true. That’s why my husband bought me him. Because he was like, she is going crazy home by herself all day every day. And I would just want to talk his face off when he got home. So he bought me a dog. {laughs}

Kathleen: I honestly can’t; when I worked at Urban Decay, I could bring my dog to work, which was pretty awesome.

Juli Bauer: That’s amazing.

Kathleen: She was pretty sad. Because she would much rather be working in an office that she can go hang out with other dogs. Now, she’s like; it’s just you and me? This sucks.

Juli Bauer: Totally. {laughs} Well thank you so much for being on, Kathleen. Tell everybody where they can find you on social media, on your website, anything out there.

Kathleen: Yeah. So my website is And then all my social media handles; Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest, all Carrie Bradshaw Lied. And I think Twitter is CB Lied, but I’m normally just hashing out my feelings of Real Housewives on Twitter. So it’s not really that hot of a spot.

Juli Bauer: Oh, I think that’s hot. Do you do Snapchat still, or do you do mostly Instagram stories?

Kathleen: I believe on Snapchat I’m CB Lied, as well. I now mostly do instastories. Even though I loved Snapchat, I actually like Snapchat better. But it’s really hard to do both.

Juli Bauer: It is. That’s why I stopped doing Snapchat all together. Because I was like I can’t; how do I put unique content on both of them?

Kathleen: Because it’s like, we’re already on our phones enough as it is.

Juli Bauer: Yes.

Kathleen: I was just like, that’s one more thing for me to be staring at my phone. I’ve got to look up sometimes, you know?

Juli Bauer: {laughs} I know. Exactly. Well everybody, go check out Carrie Bradshaw Lied. Go check out Kathleen, especially her Instagram stories. She is absolutely hilarious. Especially if you watch Housewives, because you’ll talk about the Housewives and what has been going on in that. And I don’t even watch the Housewives, and I love watching your Instagram stories about it. So go check her out. And thank you so much for being on today!

Kathleen: Thank you. What a treat. Honestly, I really appreciate it. I love your podcast; I love everything you’re doing; such a great job.

Juli Bauer: You are the best! Stay on the line, I’m going to end this here. Thank you guys so much for listening. Don’t forget to rate, review, and subscribe. And I will talk to you next week.

Today on the podcast, I’m talking to one of my favorite people to follow on instagram. Kathleen of Carrie Bradshaw Lied is hilarious, beautiful, intelligent and one badass B. She works hard to produce amazing content on her website every single […] Today on the podcast, I’m talking to one of my favorite people to follow on instagram. Kathleen of Carrie Bradshaw Lied is hilarious, beautiful, intelligent and one badass B. She works hard to produce amazing content on her website every single […] PaleOMG Uncensored yes 1:13:22
Interview w/ Sal Di Stefano – Episode 56: PaleOMG Uncensored Podcast Sat, 28 Oct 2017 13:17:51 +0000 11 Today on the podcast I’m chatting with the super cool Sal Di Stefano from Mind Pump. After listening to Joy & Claire from Girls Gone Wod I was super excited to chat with Sal myself and hear a little more about […] Today on the podcast I’m chatting with the super cool Sal Di Stefano from Mind Pump. After listening to Joy & Claire from Girls Gone Wod I was super excited to chat with Sal myself and hear a little more about his own story. If you haven’t listened to Mind Pump yet, they usually share 5 episodes a week so you always have something new to listen to and they share some really cool information about people’s bodies, nutrition and exercise. And they are no bullsh*t kind of guys. I love it! I’m super excited because I’ll be heading to the Mind Pump studio soon to record an episode of their podcast! So stay tuned for that!


 Support the podcast by clicking the Subscribe button on iTunes and please a review only if you love the podcast! There is enough negativity in this world, don’t spread more. I love hearing about what YOU want me to talk about so feel free to leave on comment here or on social media with topics you’d like me to cover! And don’t forget, some posts have affiliate links which I may be compensated from. This compensation helps with keeping this blog and up and running! Thank you so much for your support, you guys are amazing!


Episode 56 Transcription!

Well hey there pumpkin head. Welcome to another episode of PaleOMG Uncensored. It’s Halloween weekend. It is on, guys. Kids are everywhere. It’s my living nightmare. And they’re all hopped up on Snicker bars and Butterfingers and Kitkats. Those things probably cause anal leakage. I’m just kidding; Snickers, KitKat, and Butterfinger. I’m just joking. Please don’t sue me.

But. If you don’t want to go the anal leakage route, know what I’m saying? Head over to because there’s none of that going on over there. No way Jose. This week I shared edible cookie dough. No eggs in there. No raw eggs, if you’re freaked out by raw eggs. I get it. I’m not. F*cking chug that sh*t down, if it’s in cookie dough. But this removes the eggs. So I’ve got a little treat on there for you. And then you know exactly what you are putting in your mouth. No sketchy ingredients, ok?

That’s enough. That’s enough from me. I have a special interview today. I am talking to the wonderful Sal from Mind Pump. The other day I was on Instagram, and I said “Sol”. And he was like, “Hey, Juli. My name’s not “Sol”, it’s “Sal” like pal.” So he put me in my place because I’m a dumbass.

So, Sal is one of the three hosts of Mind Pump, and I’m very excited because I am going to San Jose to record a podcast for Mind Pump next month. So I get to meet all three guys. But today, it’s just Sal, and we are talking about all kinds of different topics. He is just so incredibly intelligent. So well spoken. I loved chatting with him. I hope you guys enjoy this episode. And yeah, here he is. Go check out Mind Pump Media, if you haven’t checked out their podcast. And I hope you enjoy this episode. Bye-bye! Eat edible cookie dough! Bye!

This is Juli Bauer from PaleOMG and you are listening to PaleOMG Uncensored.

Juli Bauer: Hey everyone. Welcome to another episode of PaleOMG Uncensored. Thank you so much for joining me today, because today is a very special episode because I’m not talking to myself for an hour straight. Today, I have a lovely other human on the podcast. I have Sal from Mind Pump Media. Sal, what’s your last name?

Sal Di Stefano: Di Stefano. I know, most people can’t pronounce it right.

Juli Bauer: Yeah. I’m glad I didn’t even try. {laughs} Sal Di Stefano. And I’ve heard that a million times on the podcast. But I’m glad you’re saying it. So thank you so much for being on the podcast today. It’s really cool to talk to an actual human being.

Sal Di Stefano: Thanks for having me on, I really appreciate it.

Juli Bauer: Yes. Well, will you tell everyone; because I’m very new to Mind Pump. I heard about you guys through Girls Gone WOD, because I’m close friends with Joy and Clare. And so when they were on your podcast, I started listening, and I just really loved listening to your podcast. So will you kind of just talk a little bit about yourself, how you came into the fitness world. And then a little bit about your buddies with Mind Pump, and just how it all came to be.

Sal Di Stefano: Sure. So, I got into fitness at a pretty young age, at the age of 14. And I was motivated by what motivates most people, which is insecurities. I was skinny. I wanted to build more muscle, so I got into lifting weights. And I stayed in the world of fitness for my entire life and career from then on. At the age of 18, I was a personal trainer. At 19 I was managing health clubs. And then at 21 I opened my own wellness facility. That’s when I started as an entrepreneur.

But throughout that entire period, my process through fitness, the way I view it and the way I approach training people changed quite a bit. And it continues to change. My early motivates were based on my insecurities, and I had to face that later on as an adult. I think it’s what gets most people exercising. It’s a powerful motivator initially. But long term, it’s not a very effective motivator because it does get us to do things that aren’t necessarily the best for ourselves and our bodies. When I would be motivated because I felt like I needed to build muscle, I wouldn’t listen to my body when it came to food. I would feed myself too much, or eat too much protein. I would workout with too much intensity too often. And the irony of that is I didn’t even get the results I wanted because of that.

When I opened my wellness facility, my approach was a little different. More holistic. I was lucky enough to work with some incredible young ladies. I had a massage therapist that I had on staff with me, and a physical therapist that I had on staff. An acupuncturist. And their approach to health was different than mine. I came from the whole, lift weights and watch your macros side. And they came from the holistic side. And I learned quite a bit working with those ladies. And it helped me face my own motivations for exercise, and my approach towards training other people and became much more successful in terms of the results. Or at least the long-term results I could give people.

About three years ago, I got in contact with my cohost, Adam Schafer. Because I hadn’t meet my two cohosts until the podcast Mind Pump. But I had known of them, and we started conversing over the phone. We just connected over our love and disdain for the industry that we worked in. Love for fitness, because it helps people on most levels. And disdain for it because the industry is full of bad information. But the people that are getting all the attention are the ones that are telling people to do the wrong things when it comes to their nutrition and their exercise.

We started Mind Pump with the goal of bringing good information to people. And also entertaining people in a very uncensored, no-holds barred kind of way. Which I know you probably like. I’ve heard your show a few times. And it’s been pretty effective. I think we struck a nerve. We definitely pissed off a lot of people in the industry. We’ve gotten letters from supplement companies and other organizations. And the cool thing is we were never sponsored. We weren’t sponsored for the first, I don’t know, year and a half we were on air. Which gave us the freedom to say whatever we wanted.

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Sal Di Stefano: And it seems to have struck a nerve. The show has grown, and it’s been awesome.

Juli Bauer: So how did you guys decide to start Mind Pump? The podcast.

Sal Di Stefano: So when I had my wellness facility, I was training Doug, who is now the producer of the show. And he had a lot of experience in history and fitness. He had been working out since he was a kid. He’d consider himself a hard gainer or a nonresponder. This is a term that people will use to describe themselves when they just don’t get the results that everybody else does when they workout.

So he comes to me, and I completely change his approach to training. And his body starts responding. And he tells me, “You know Sal, if you ever come up with a program or something that you think you can market, let me know and I’ll market it for you.” He had some experience in the internet marketing world. So I came up with the first program that now Mind Pump Sals, MAPS, or at least the concept for MAPS. And me and Doug had put together this whole sales video for it.

And I sent it to Adam because I knew he had social media experience, and I also trusted his opinion. I’d never met the guy, but I knew of him. So I sent it to him. He calls me. We get on the phone. And I mean, seriously, it was like 10 minutes into the conversation we were like, we need to do a podcast.

We get in Adam’s living room the next day; me, Adam, Justin, and for four hours it was nonstop just great conversation, chemistry, passion, anger, laughter, and we were like; we need to record this. We think this will be awesome. And I guess we guessed correctly; we’re doing alright for now. And we continue to grow. And it’s been fun.

Juli Bauer: And how often do you guys record? Because you come out with, what is it, 5 podcasts a week?

Sal Di Stefano: Yeah, we do a lot. That’s like our super power, is just putting out content. And really, we’ve had other podcasters come to our studio and record with us. And most of the time they’re kind of blown away by our lack of preparation. {laughs} I think the secret behind why we can put out so much content is we will literally sit down.

I mean, we all have between 15 to 20 years of experience as professionals in fitness. So talking about fitness is so natural to us, that we can just sit down. We can pull up questions, or come up with a topic on the fly. And just have a great conversation. Our podcast is very conversational. When you listen to it, you hear it. It’s not super structured. We do our thing. So we do. We record probably every single day we’ll record a podcast or two so we’ll have some in what we call the hopper, or in the bank. We also post a YouTube video every single day. So we do put out a lot of content. But we have a whole facility now dedicated to that, so it makes it a lot easier.

Juli Bauer: And so you guys spend every single day together, pretty much, recording something. Whether you’re talking about a certain subject, or you guys are just shooting the sh*t, and it becomes a podcast, right?

Sal Di Stefano: Oh yeah. I mean, I can’t tell you how many episodes we have no idea what we’re going to talk about. And we just sit down, and we’ll go. And believe it or not, those tend to turn out to be our best, most popular episodes. But yeah, this is our full-time job. We come into the studio, we have a recording studio. We have a gym that we film in. And we sit down and do our podcast. We do some video. Talk about what the next program is going to look like. We have a forum, which is our online community that we work with every single day answering questions about fitness or health or mindfulness, meditation. You name it. And yeah, that’s every single day.

Juli Bauer: And can you talk just a little bit more about MAPS and what MAPS includes? Because I’ve been to your website. And I’ve heard your podcast when you talk about Prime and Prime Pro. Can you talk a little bit about those bundles, and what MAPS really means?

Sal Di Stefano: Yeah, absolutely. Sorry about our website, we’re working on it. Super confusing when you go on there.

Juli Bauer: No, I don’t think it is.

Sal Di Stefano: {laughs} Well, it will get a lot better trust me.

Juli Bauer: Yeah. It always can, right? Always improving. {laughs}

Sal Di Stefano: So MAPS stands for muscular adaptation programing system. So as a trainer, or as trainers; me, Adam, and Justin. There’s a lot of common, what’s considered common knowledge in fitness. Ok? For example, we’ve all heard the, “You need to eat small meals throughout the day. That speeds up the metabolism and helps to burn body fat.”

Or, the best way to train the body if you want to build muscle, and get tone or amplify the metabolism, or whatever, is to do what’s called a body part split. Where you go to the gym, and you work your chest on one day, your back on another day, your shoulders on another day. And so there’s all these common knowledge tidbits of information that we’ve all accepted as truth. Although it’s getting challenged a lot more now, it wasn’t getting challenged that much 5 years ago, for example. This is just the way it was.

And because we’ve been in fitness for so long, I think when you do this for a long time you start; especially if you train a lot of people. You start to see what works and what doesn’t work. And a lot of times, it runs counter to what you thought was the truth. And when it came to exercise programming, this was the case. I would notice that these body part split routines were just not nearly as effective as training the body as a whole, and increasing the frequency that you would train body parts. So that was kind of the first realization.

The second realization was that intensity, although important, is overused with most workout programs. Too much intensity fries the body. But it’s not really the muscles that we’re worried about so much. Because muscles, they get damaged and they recover. It’s the central nervous system that really gets impacted through exercise. But the central nervous system gets impacted by everything. Sleep, stress, diet, you name it. And if we’re constantly hammering the body with intense workouts, and your lifestyle is also having times of stress, or lack of sleep, or you have kids and you’re super busy. Whatever. You’re going to overwhelm the central nervous system; and then the muscles, you can do whatever you want for the muscles, they’re not going to respond.

And I use this analogy all the time on the show, and it really resonates with people. You want to think of the central nervous system as an amplifier, and your muscles as the speakers. So if you know how stereo systems work, the amplifier puts out the power to the speakers, and the speakers make the sound. Well if you have a crappy amplifier, or a weak amplifier, you could have the biggest, baddest speakers in the world but they’re not going to put out much sound. And this is the relationship between the central nervous system and the muscles.

And MAPS aims to train the body according to the central nervous system. Because if you train your body based on how your central nervous system adapts, you’re almost always going to get great results with your muscles. But the reverse isn’t always true. If I follow the rules of muscle damage and hammer my muscles so that they get damaged and repair and rebuild, and I ignore the central nervous system, then I’m going to hit lots of plateaus. Or I may actually cause detrimental effects.

Which we see quite a bit now; especially in the hardcore training world. Where you have, whether it’s your stage presentation competitors, like your figure competitors or fitness competitors. Bikini competitors. Body builders. Or you have your athletes. Your collegiate level athletes. Or your weekend warrior CrossFit athletes, where they keep pushing the limit with the intensity. Their body stops responding; their response is to continue to increase the intensity. And then they start to get metabolic damage, or hormone issues, or downregulation of receptors that respond to stress hormone like cortisol. So then they get in this; whatever you want to call it. Adrenal fatigue, or HPA axis dysfunction. And it’s just this downward spiral.

MAPS is designed to work with the body, and work with the body’s natural systems of adaptation. And there’s different programs. One is our foundational program. Then we have one that’s designed for athletes, and one that’s designed for your stage presentation competitors, or people who are mainly focused with aesthetics. And we have correctional based MAPS programs. But they’re all designed by three trainers with lots of experience. And we put them together in a way where we know that if people follow this format, the likelihood that they’re going to continue to succeed long-term is much higher than if they follow the typical, whether it be the body part split routines or they follow the super high intensity driven other type workout routines without taking these things into account.

Juli Bauer: And do you have more men or women for your clientele? Or is it kind of balanced?

Sal Di Stefano: You know what’s funny; this is a great question. There are three guys on the podcast, right? It’s this kind of uncensored raw fitness information, but there’s also a comedy element to it. Especially the beginning of our episodes, which is about 20-30 minutes long. It’s three dudes talking. So the language can get whatever. And the programs are muscle building. MAPS; the first MAPS program is MAPS anabolic. So it sounds very male; it sounds like we would have mainly a male audience.

But the funny thing is we have a very large female audience. I’d say almost half of our audience is female. And maybe a slight majority of our program purchasers, or people who enroll in our MAPS program are women. And it’s fascinating because when I first started in the big box gyms; I started managing these big 24-hour fitness type locations, gyms looked very different than they do today. Gyms then were still trying to figure out how they could attract more women. Because the main consumers of health clubs; especially gyms with weights, were men.

So what these gyms would do is they would create, within their boxes, you’d have these women only workout areas. Which was literally another room in the gym with the same exact equipment, except the equipment was pink, or the dumbbells were pink or whatever. So hilarious, right?

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Sal Di Stefano: Same stuff, though. And they would come up with terminology to attract women to the gyms. Like the word toned. Toned was invented by the fitness industry to get women to buy gym memberships. Because at the time, if you told a woman she could build muscle, they would all freak out, because nobody wanted to look like a bodybuilder. At least that was the image you had when you thought of building muscle.

So that was kind of the way gyms were for a long time. But then things started to change. I think; I give a lot of credit to the CrossFit movement. CrossFit brought back quite a few things. Big barbell movements got popular again. But it also got women to workout and to really get into the muscle building aspect of fitness. And there’s lots of information now that’s available to people and accessible where people understand that building muscle is a great thing. It speeds up your metabolism. You get more fit, healthy, you can move better. So now women are more; I see a lot more women looking to lift weights for the purpose of building muscle. Whereas before, I’m just looking, if I do lift weights, is to burn calories. Or I’m not going to do weights at all, I’m just going to do cardio.

So because of that kind of transformation or that morphing that’s been happening in the fitness industry, I’m now seeing women seeking out programs that are more serious. Or at least the ones that advertise to be more serious. And that’s what I’ve been hearing from my female audience. Because I’ll message them, and I’ll be like; “I’m just wondering, what made you; why did you choose MAPS?” Because the information we put out, it sounds very male oriented. And they’re like, “We want a program that works, and a lot of programs in the past that were advertised for women weren’t as effective.” So it’s kind of interesting what’s happening. It’s like the pendulum is swinging the other direction. But our audience is close to half men, half women.

Juli Bauer: Ok. Because that’s something I really loved about your podcast. Was as you start; so you see the three of you guys, and you’re huge, muscular, bro-y looking dudes. And then you listen to your podcast, and you’re very; it’s very easy to listen to and you connect with women. And you understand their body’s, and just the way you explain things. It’s very easy to listen to, and that’s what kind of hooked me in. I loved listening to all kinds of different podcasts.

And there was this one episode; and I’ve heard you guys talk about this a few times. But it’s something I wanted to talk to you about, because I talk about it all the time on my own podcast. Because I did exactly what you just said. I drank the CrossFit Kool-Aid, and I started seeing results. So I thought, the more workouts I do, the more results I’m going to see. If I’m seeing results from one workout a day, what can two workouts a day get me? What can three workouts a day?

And I finally hit that wall of, “adrenal fatigue.” And my body was just gaining weight. I had no energy. My workouts were terrible. I was more prone to injury. It was just this downward spiral, over and over. So me, I always tell women it was my f*ck it moment. It was like, f*ck this. Obviously this isn’t working. I’m going to take rest days. I’m not going to lift as heavy as I used to. I’m going to listen to my body when it needs rest, and take multiple rest days. And only workout once a day.

And as soon as I did that, my body was able to come back into this equilibrium stage of not only showing more muscle. So I was actually “toning up” as women thought it was. They were like, “How are you getting more tone?” It was like, my body was just able to relax. And I ate the food that it was craving instead of restricting so much.

And you talk about this on episode 599. I was writing up questions to ask you, and I wrote down this episode. Because you talk about dealing with this with women. So is this something you run into a lot with women of just working out too much, and they’re not seeing the results. And they’re probably restricting their caloric intake because that’s what they’ve been taught for so many years?

Sal Di Stefano: Yeah. I mean I run into it with both men and women. But you’re right, it’s a higher prevalence among women. I think the reason you see this so often is like I said earlier; the main motivation for exercise and nutrition for people tends to be because they don’t like something about themselves. They don’t like their body. They don’t like the way it looks. Or they feel insecure about themselves. Or they’ve confused their body image with their self-image.

So if you go to the gym, and you eat because you hate your body, you’re going to ignore the signals that your body is going to tell you. And you’re going to keep pushing harder. Because if I go to the gym, and again, if I’m motivated because I don’t like the way I look or I don’t want to look fat again, or whatever. And I go to the gym, and I’m tired. I’m tired, I’ve got cold, clammy hands. I’m having issues with my sleep. My libido is low, whatever. I’m going to ignore those signals, because I’m going to go pound the gym again. I’m going to go workout real hard, and push past this.

And you end up perpetuating the cycle, or kicking the can forward in the sense that it keeps getting worse and worse. Until the signals get louder and louder and louder, until your body is no longer whispering at you. It’s talking at you, and then it’s yelling at you. And then you’ll have where your body just rebels on you.

The same thing happened to me, Juli. When I was 30 years old, my body did the same exact thing, where it just stopped. I had a health crisis, and it forced me to take a look at the way I was treating myself. And the irony of it is the way I train now and the way now is motivated differently, and it looks different. The irony is that I look better than I did before. And it’s because I’m healthy. And that’s a message I like to say on the show all the time. People are so motivated by changing how they look, but nothing looks better than healthy.

Juli Bauer: Exactly.

Sal Di Stefano: Healthy looks the best. And if you chase health, and you chase wellness, you’re going to get a great deal of the aesthetics. But if you chase aesthetics all the time, not only; you might get aesthetics at first. But at some point, you’re going to lose it because your health goes down and then you have nothing. And this is the cycle that people tend to get stuck into.

And yes, we talk a lot about this message because we were trainers for so long. And you know, the thing about the fitness industry is that it preys upon people’s insecurities. It’s a strong motivator, you know what I mean? Making you feel bad about yourself. Making you feel like you’re not good enough. Making you feel like the reason why you’re not responding from your workouts is because you’re not working out hard enough, or you’re not restricting enough. You don’t have any willpower.

So it feeds on that. And it pushes that. And that motivates people to buy the next diet, program, the diet pills, or to sign up for the next super intense workout program. Whether it be your Insanity workout at home, or you go into your CrossFit box and beat yourself up. Or whatever it is. It does get sales; but it’s not solving any problems. And it really goes down to the root cause of all of this. Which is, we treat exercise like a punishment, and we treat food like a treat or a punishment.

And that process eventually leads to a lot of the symptoms that you felt. And a lot of what you felt, Juli; they call it adrenal fatigue or they’ll call it HPA axis dysfunction. But what we do know is that constant exposure to stress hormones and stress chemicals in the body, your body will adapt to those things. And the way it typically adapts is it adapts by either downregulating receptors that those hormones and chemicals attach to. Or by lowering or changing your hormone profile because your body is constantly trying to bring you into this state of equilibrium. But you keep fighting it and pushing it. And creating all these problems.

It’s really no different than when people eat a really high sugar, high calorie diet and become insulin resistant. Their body is pushing out all this insulin, because of all the sugar they’re taking in. So their body becomes more and more resistant to insulin, and then over time that becomes diabetes. The same thing can happen with your other hormones. If you’re constantly exposing yourself to high levels of cortisol by pushing your body all the time, and by restricting your calories all the time, your body will become resistant to cortisol. And what will happen is you’ll find yourself seeking replacements for that cortisol. So now I need more coffee. I need more stimulants to keep me awake or to give me the energy. Or, you’re going to seek out more and more high intensity situations to get that cortisol to come out. Like more intense workouts.

The type A, go, go, go, super stressed individual is typically the one that seeks out the super high intense workouts. And you ask yourself why; well they get temporary relief. Because that high intensity workout gets their body to squirt out a little bit more cortisol and they start to feel normal again. But then it kind of repeats the cycle.

So when you start to understand things from that perspective, then you can really change how you approach exercise and nutrition. And then your body starts to respond. And it almost feels; it gets to a point where it feels almost effortless. Where the body just wants to be healthy. Where the foods that you choose are the ones that nourish your body. And then it’s no longer this crazy struggle of hardcore workouts, restriction; oh, I’m off the wagon. I’m not working out, and I’m eating whatever I want. This back and forth type of thing that a lot of people experience.

Juli Bauer: And when you see men or women go through this, whatever it is. If it is adrenal fatigue. For me, I feel like it took about 3 years to really heal the damage that I had done over the past four or so. How long do you think it usually takes people to get back to a balance, where they feel that balance of; I’m eating the foods that I need and I’m not doing this yoyo “dieting” or feeling the need to get that extra boost of cortisol.

Because I was 100% in that. When you say that, I had never thought of it like that. But when I was feeling sh*tty; ok, I’ll just get another burst of an awesome workout and I’ll feel better. But then it was a vicious cycle and over and over.

So how long do you think it takes people to get back to their normal? Just a rough guestimate, because obviously everyone is so individualized.

Sal Di Stefano: So, I work with; I do have some online clients. I don’t work with a ton, but I continue to do it because I like to keep my finger on the pulse of what’s happening out there with fitness. And working with clients always keeps my perspectives really clear. Because I think when I go away from that, then I start to look at things from the bird’s eye view, and it’s harder to, again, to really connect to what’s going on.

I’ve recently been working a lot with people in this category. And it can take anywhere between three months to years. But it’s largely; of course there are genetic components that can determine how your body responds to anything. There’s also how much damage you’ve done to your body. Some of the worst people I’ve worked with are these chronic; I had a lady that I worked with that would just do marathon after marathon. It was how she motivated herself to workout. So if she didn’t have a marathon scheduled, she couldn’t find the motivation or whatever to workout.

So she did marathon after marathon. She had three children. She also had a job. She was just super busy, and just pushing herself over and over again. And her particular case, we had to take kind of drastic measures. And luckily she was very receptive. She’d listened to my podcast, so she trusted me. And we were able to make significant improvements in a 6-month period.

The main reason sometimes why I think it takes people a long time is because it takes them time to make those changes little by little, because it’s tough. A year ago; I’ll give you an example. A year ago, man I was working out so hard. I could work out 2 hours a day. I could sleep 7 hours. I was eating 1500 calorie or 1200 calorie paleo diet or whatever, keto, whatever it was. And I felt amazing, and now I feel like crap. What’s going on? It’s hard to understand that what you did before now is doing harm to you.

So then what people will do, if they’re self-aware, is they’ll start to change things. But they change things one at a time. Like, ok now what I’m going to do is I’m going to workout for one hour instead of two hours. And that starts to work a little bit. And then, oh wait, let me look at my diet and I’ll make a couple of changes here. And that’s working a little bit. Let me look at my sleep quality. Let me look at my mindfulness practice, or my stress management. So that’s why I think sometimes it takes so long.

If you look at the whole thing, and you approach it with a big change; like, ok you’re working out two hours a day. Here’s what we’re going to do. You’re going to work out; let’s ramp that down to three days a week. Let’s completely change your routine. You’re not going to do short rest periods. You’re not going to do cardio. You’re going to do straight sets, traditional resistance training. You’re not going to go to failure. On all the other days, your exercise will consist of yin yoga, or slow walking, or meditation while you’re walking. Because I’m trying to, again, get your body more sensitive to your stress hormones. And the way you do that is by lowering those stress hormones.

Then we’ll look at diet. I’m going to nourish your body, so we need adequate fat intake and perhaps adequate carbohydrate intake if that person’s been restricting for a long time. Protein intake can be something that we need to look at as well.

Let’s look at your sleep routine. I’ll take someone typically and I’ll tell them, an hour before bed, turn off all electronics. If you can, turn off the lights and go by candlelight. We want your body to be ready to go to sleep when you do go to bed. And studies show that this makes a big difference.

Upon waking, let’s do some belly breathing for 5 minutes in bed before you get out of bed so that we don’t automatically; because a lot of people, when they first get out of bed, especially if you’re a busy person, it’s like, “Boom, stress hormones! Let’s go!” You know. And so I’ll tell them, do belly breathing when you get up and let’s kind of ease into waking up. I’ll have people slowly reduce and then eliminate all stimulants, because stimulants cause that sympathetic stress response in the body.

And then we can go down the list. I can look at more specifics with nutrition. We can look at some supplementation that may help. We can look at potential hormonal disruptions that may be caused by birth control, or if it’s a man do they have low testosterone because of what they’ve been doing to their body. And all these other things. The body will adapt, and it will start to change. It just, there’s a lot of factors. Like I said, one of the main ones is how bought in is the individual to change all of these things that they’re so married to

I mean, it must have been difficult for you. You were a competitor, right? In CrossFit?

Juli Bauer: I was, yes.

Sal Di Stefano: Pretty high level. It must have been difficult to break free from that, because I’m sure for a moment it defined you and it felt awesome and you performed excellent. To break away from that and try something different, it must have been tough.

Juli Bauer: Yeah. It was so hard. I would go in, and know I wouldn’t be doing a workout as RX, and I would cry about it because I felt bad. And people gave me sh*t about it too. I had coaches who didn’t understand why I wasn’t going a certain weight. Because they’re male coaches; male rugby players. More is better, f*cking go hard all the time. So they had a very hard time understanding why I was doing something.

So yeah, it was very difficult. And I loved how empowering that workout made me feel. Doing a workout RX and beating males in that workout. Having the best score on the board; that really empowered me. And it was hard to relearn that that number doesn’t really mean sh*t. {laughs} So that was very challenging. And I’ve talked to other women who have gone through that same thing of rediscovering your purpose when that was your purpose for so long. It’s really hard to cut back, when you know you can physically do something. But it is not the best thing for your body.

Sal Di Stefano: Tough. Very difficult transition to do it. I’ll get bikini competitors; these are stage competitors that, they’re getting judged on their physique. And it’s not body building, it’s a lot less muscle. But still, you’ve got to be very lean and tone and all that stuff. So these women will go into these contests, and they’ll do tons of cardio. Extreme dieting. Hardcore workouts. And they’ll do 2 or 3 competitions, and then they’ve got all these symptoms. Like the symptoms I had just highlighted. All these bad symptoms. Their body is not responding. They’re eating 1200 calories a day, but they’re doing 2-hour workouts a day. And yet if they go anything above 1200 calories, their body just gains body fat.

And then they’ll come to me, and I’ll tell them, we’re going to slowly increase your calories. Reduce your cardio, eventually eliminate it, and you may gain; you’re probably going to gain some weight through this process. But that’s what we’re going to have to do to heal your body. And man, that is a tough thing to get through. And I think it all boils down to that we tend to identify with our workouts. Or identify with our bodies; which is a big mistake. We are not our bodies. When people say, “I’m fat.” No, you’re not fat. You have fat on your body. Or, “I am strong.” No, you are not strong. Your body is strong.

The reason why it’s important not to identify with; and it’s ok to be objective. It’s ok to say; I need to get stronger here. I want to get my body leaner here. Or these signs of poor health are showing up, so I want to get better health or whatever. That’s fine, but you don’t want to identify with those things. Because at some point, they’re going to change. You can do everything perfect, and at some point you’re going to get old anyway, right? 90 years old, you’re not going to be this hardcore young, fit athlete or whatever. You have to learn to not identify with these things. Because that will get you into big trouble. And if you need to change things, now it’s like this huge identity crisis. Who am I? What am I? Am I lazy? What’s going on?

And those coaches that were giving you sh*t for having to change your workouts; it’s threatening to them. It had nothing to do with you. To them, it’s their whole identity. “Oh, you’re just lazy. I’m not lazy. I’m going to keep pushing myself.” Or whatever. And they’re going to run into the same thing, Juli. It’s going to take a little bit of time. But if they continue with that attitude, they will also run into those problems and they’re going to have to learn those lessons. And hopefully they don’t learn them the hard way. I hope they learn them the right way.

Juli Bauer: I know. And I’m seeing that a little bit more and more, because they’re hitting about 40. And you can’t really feel that exact same way as you could feel when you were 25 and getting concussions constantly in rugby. {laughs} But I think one of the hard things was I was that coach and I was doing RX, so I could ask other women to do the same. And I think they were scared that me saying, no I want to go lighter, it was going to make other women do that.

And it did in a way because other women were like; you know what? I don’t feel comfortable with that weight. I’m going to stick lighter. But I think that is so much better as a CrossFit gym. Because CrossFit is, go harder. Push faster. Go heavier. And I was saying; you know, I’m going to go lighter. Because I want my form to be perfect throughout this workout and not to change in any way. And I think that empowered other women to kind of take responsibility for their own weight and think twice about what weight they were doing. And probably helped with injuries in their own CrossFit future, honestly.

So I think that was a hard piece for them, was seeing a woman in the gym who had been doing a certain weight and changing their identity, really, and almost not encouraging but opening up that door for other women. I think that was hard as males. When they’ve never experienced that in their own fitness world.

Sal Di Stefano: Right. And you know, men. By the way, this is much more difficult to work with when I work with men. When I get women who come to me with some of these issues, they’re much more receptive. Men tend to not be, because I think we’re taught to be tough, and push through it, don’t be a pussy or whatever. So when a guy is like; man, I’m tired. My body feels fried. Or whatever. First off, they have a tough time communicating that. And second, they tend to feel like, I can’t say that because I’m going to be weak. I’ve got to keep pushing myself. And what they end up doing is just stopping. They just quit and leave altogether.

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Sal Di Stefano: But I’ll tell you what. This is a message I try to hammer home all the time on Mind Pump. We all have the most effective, accurate health and fitness coach available to us. All of us do, in the world. And that’s your body. There’s no coach on earth that is going to train you and help you eat a particular way or whatever to get you in this optimal state of health and performance and wellbeing. No coach in the world is as effective as the signals of your body.

The problem is, is that we learn to ignore them. We’ve learned to ignore our bodies since we were children. We’ve learned to ignore our bodies when we were kids, when we’re told to clean our plates. Even though we couldn’t eat anymore. We don’t know what hunger feels like, because most of us eat all day long, so we’ve never really gone. Fasting, for example. That’s a big thing now, but humans evolved fasting, so we knew what that felt like.

The foods that we eat are so hyperpalatable. And they’re designed literally to hijack our systems of satiety so that when you’re eating something, under normal circumstances we have something called palate fatigue. Where if I eat the same food, I stop. I don’t want to eat anymore. I’m kind of sick of it. But if you introduce a new flavor, then I’ll want to eat more. We all experience this when we have a big dinner, and we’re stuffed, and they bring out dessert. And oh, I can eat now.

So that’s ignoring your body’s signals. We’re taught to ignore our body’s signals when we’re tired, when we’re in pain, when we’re whatever. So when we go to workout, when we go to diet or whatever, eat right, you can’t listen to your body because you don’t even know how. We’re told to workout past the pain to the point where people don’t know the difference between good pain and bad pain, and they start hurting themselves.

So if we can really start to learn how to understand and listen to the signals of our body, then we will be able to train and eat in a way that truly serves us. And a body that’s really in balance can do amazing things. When you’re in this kind of amazing balance of intensity, but relaxation; of mindfulness, of being able to push yourself when you need to. Of strength and endurance and all these different things, your performance is incredible. And the physical representation of that; the aesthetics of that.

Let me ask you ask you a question; what do you think a body that is in total wellness and health; that is optimized; what does that look like? Think about that for a second. It looks lean, it’s got a good amount of muscle. It can move well. Sh*t; it looks the way we all want to look. But we forget that. We separate the two. We think health is over here, but the way I want to look is over here. So I need to train and feed myself a particular way. They’re both the same. And in fact, like I said before. Health is what gives you those things. And if we ignore that; if we ignore those signals, you’re not going to get either one.

Juli Bauer: And it’s hard. I talk about that all the time on my podcast; listening to your body. But it’s hard for people who have never listened to their body to understand what that even feels like. It’s hard to articulate how people get to that point. Because I got to that point, but I don’t know how exactly I got there. I was thinking; ok, obviously everything I’m doing is not working so I need to do something different. And kind of threw in the towel. And when I was craving carbohydrates, I had carbohydrates. When I was craving fat, I had fat. When I wasn’t craving fat, I didn’t have fat. And that was how I was able to listen to my body.

I think it’s very hard for people to understand what that feels like when they’ve never done that their entire life. They were forced to finish their plate, or whatever else. It’s just so hard to explain to people how to get there. But it is the most amazing feeling when you can get to that point.

Sal Di Stefano: It is. It’s a process. It is a practice, so it does take time. But here’s some simple tips that I like to give people, or things to consider when they’re trying to get to this particular state. First off, you should feel good after your workouts. You should not feel like you got run over by a truck. You should not feel, the next day, like you can’t walk. I know people brag about that. Like, “Oh, I had such a great workout, I can barely move today.” It becomes this badge of honor. No, you went too far.

And there are some benefits to sometimes going that hard. Most of them are mental. Most of them are being able to break through certain things, and mental barriers, and really knowing what your body is capable of. But for the most part, you should feel amazing and energized after your workout. But if you don’t, then revisit your workout, and figure out what’s going on. And that may mean that you’re overdoing it with your workouts.

Or it may mean that you’re doing the wrong workout. Instead of going to the gym and hammering yourself, perhaps you need to do a yoga class and stretch that day. So that’s number one. Your workouts should immediately make you feel good, energized, and feel that way for the rest of the day.

Number two is become mindful and present around your food. So here are some steps that I like to give people. And I’ll use myself as an example. Because I always felt skinny, and wanted to build muscle, the relationship that I developed with food was that I needed more of it and more calories, and in particular, more protein. So I had developed this habit of drinking lots of water with my food. Because I would chew my food a few times, wash it down with water. It was just like get the food in there and get the calories in there. So I became very mindless with my food.

One of the good things about having a fitness podcast is I get to interview all these incredible fitness leaders. I interviewed Paul Chek, who is like this wellness guru. And he told me; probably not a good idea to drink food while you’re eating. And I said why. And he said; well you’re not chewing it enough. That’s part of digestion. And it sounds like you’re just trying to get the food down there to get the calories. And I thought about it; and I was like; jeeze that’s kind of weird. So I stopped drinking water with my meals, and it forced me to have to chew my food. It made me more mindful. I started tasting my food. And it changed the whole experience.

So, make yourself; you want to create mindfulness around food. That means eliminating distractions, so you’re not watching TV or on your phone. You’re sitting down. You’re eating. You’re chewing. You’re tasting. And you’re asking yourself, am I really hungry or is this anxiety? Is this stress? Is this depression? Or is this a distraction?

And then don’t judge whatever decision you made. Because you’re not going to be perfect. There’s going to be things you’re going to eat and then afterwards you’re going to think to yourself; oh man, I ate that because I was stressed. I totally didn’t need to eat that. Well don’t add a layer of judgement on top of that. Just observe it. Be cognizant of it. And continue the process of being mindful around food. And what you’ll find over time is the decisions that you make around food start to change. And I’ll give you another example.

I had a client who, every morning she ate a bagel. This was just her morning routine. She’d been eating it this way for 5 years. And she always complained of also having fatigue. So we started this mindfulness practice with food. And I told her; listen. After you eat, pay attention to how you feel an hour or two after your meal and take note of it. And she started noticing that it was the bagel. After she ate the bagel, she would feel a little bit of bloat, and she would be fatigued. And so little by little, we were able to connect that the bagel was causing that for her.

Now, I didn’t tell her to stop eating the bagel. But because she started connecting that bagel to the way she felt afterwards; which she was completely unaware of before. She did not connect that before. Because it wasn’t immediate. It wasn’t like she ate it and got sick. It was like an hour or two later. She started to connect that bagel to the feeling of fatigue and the feeling of being bloated and uncomfortable. And she stopped wanting the bagel. Naturally. She stopped craving that bagel.

And the same things happened with clients with other types of food, where they become more aware how they feel after they eat broccoli, for example, or vegetables. Things that they didn’t want to eat. But now they notice they feel good after eating these foods. And what happens is they make a different connection to that food, and they find that now they enjoy the taste of those foods. This process takes some time, but that’s the next step.

Then you can start tracking your food. And there’s lots of apps that you can get that are free. Like Fat Secret and My Fitness Pal. Start paying attention to what’s in your food; calories, proteins, fats, carbohydrates. And then learn how to manipulate those to get yourself to lose weight or gain weight. And don’t go crazy with that. And over time, just become more aware of what your tracking. And then slowly take yourself off tracking. Because you don’t want to get stuck in that phase. Because that can also become an obsession. I have clients who come to me to track every single thing they put in their mouth; and it’s like, ok this is not a good relationship with food. We’ve got to get you off tracking as well. And slowly take yourself off tracking.

Fasting is another excellent tool to bring awareness around food. Mainly because it breaks the chains that we have to food. Because you’ll hear people say things like, “Oh, if I don’t eat lunch I get so irritable. Or I get hangry.” That’s the word people use. If I don’t eat breakfast or whatever. So I say; well, let’s go 24 hours. And this is for people who are healthy. Go 24 hours without a meal, drink water, and see how you feel. And then people start to notice that they feel ok. So now I’m really hungry; this is what hunger feels like. Before, it was just cravings or whatever. So that also helps with that relationship.

And then with exercise, again go to the gym to feel good. You know what your goals are. Definitely train towards those goals. But if you feel tired, if you feel fatigued, if you feel sore, if you feel inflamed, go to the gym and look to recover. Look to make your body feel better rather than beating it up. And through this process of doing just those easy steps, you’ll find that things will start to change. Your workouts will start to change based on the signals that your body is telling you. Your nutrition will start to change based on the signals that your body is telling you. And sometimes you can train harder, and sometimes you can train easier. And these are natural cycles of the body.

Juli Bauer: So, what type of workout do you do nowadays? Because I’m sure you’ve tried all sorts of things. So what kind of workout do you do, and what kind of diet do you follow? And that doesn’t mean an actual diet. But lifestyle choices when it comes to your food.

Sal Di Stefano: So, my workouts, they change depending on how I feel or if I have a particular goal. So does my nutrition. But there’s a general trend. My nutrition tends to be lower on the carbohydrate end. I do have sensitivities to certain foods; this is when I mentioned my body rebelled on me when I turned 30. It was food that really became a problem. I had all these gut issues all of a sudden. I was losing weight and whatever. And I still do have some food sensitivities. So I avoid gluten. I avoid dairy. I avoid egg whites; I have an intolerance to those as well. And although I do eat then every once in a while, I do for the most part avoid them.

I like to eat a diet that’s higher in fat. It feels better to me. It tends to nourish my body a little bit better. My protein intake is on the moderate side. I used to eat these ridiculous amounts of protein because I was told that you had to eat all this protein for muscle, whatever, which is also false. So now my protein intake is about 120 to 150 grams, which is high, but not super high. I’m a 200-pound male.

And then my workouts; I do resistance training almost every day. But that changes, depending on what my body feels like. Sometimes my resistance training is heavy. Other times it’s lighter. Sometimes it’s more focused on mobility and movement. I incorporate stretching into my routines. And then as far as cardio is concerned, I walk. I mainly walk. I’m not looking for tons of endurance. And cardiovascular training done super frequently does cause the body to adapt in a way that may not be favorable for modern lifestyles. It does cause the body to become more efficient with calories, so it will slow your metabolism down over time. And I do enjoy eating food and stuff like that, so I don’t necessarily want a slower metabolism.

Juli Bauer: {laughs} Yeah. I’m right there with you. I want to talk to you about alcohol, because that is a big thing in our society. We have so many different social situations, and it’s something that I talked about on my podcast, and that I talk to with people at my gym on a regular basis. Because we have a very young gym, and it’s in the heart of Denver so it’s people who are going out on a regular basis and drinking all the time. And they’re very frustrated when they’re not seeing results in the gym. And when I ask them to take alcohol out, it seems like an absolutely not doable thing whatsoever.

Do you talk to your clients about alcohol and what it can really do to the body without… I’ve heard so many things about how you’re not able to build as much muscle. And not only are you getting an excessive amount of calories; how do you talk to people about alcohol and kind of pull them back from the alcohol train? Because people love being on that train.

Sal Di Stefano: So, when you look at food or you look at substances, alcohol for example, you can look at them from the obvious standpoint of, how does this affect my physical body. Ok? And very clear that from a physical standpoint, alcohol has no physical benefits. There’s no physical benefits for your body. And most of what alcohol would do for your physical body is negative. Higher risk of cancer, even if you have low amounts of alcohol, it shows an increased risk of breast cancer. Of course it can add body fat. It can contribute to insulin resistance. And I could talk for an hour on the list of things that alcohol can cause.

Now, there’s another side to this. There are effects that alcohol has on you that are not physical, either. For example, it can either help or encourage bonding with other people. Or maybe it can help you relax in a particular situation. Or maybe it’s a celebration with people around you for a birthday or whatever. So although alcohol at that time may not be feeding your body, it may be feeding something else that also needs to be taken care of. And this is important to know for people, because this is where balance comes from.

If I’m at my; my son turns 12 and it’s his birthday, and we have cake there and maybe beer with the friends and family, and it’s once a year and it’s a great time. And I want to enjoy the people around me and bond with them. At that time, what’s important to me is that. Yes, I’m eating cake and I’m drinking beer and that’s not great for my physical body at the moment. But I’m bonding with people and I’m enjoying this homemade cake that I made for my son’s birthday. So at that time, that’s a good decision.

And this is how I talk to people about these substances. Because when people drink alcohol on a regular basis, many times it’s not to feed themselves in any good way. Sometimes it is, but many times it’s as an escape or they’re using it as a crutch to relax. Because they have no other way of relaxing. Like, a long day of work and I’m stressed out and that two glasses of wine or that beer, whatever, helps me settle down. And every once in a while that’s fine. But when you’re doing it all the time, you’re not helping yourself on that end, either. Because now you’re using it as a way to relax when there’s other methods that you need to learn and it becomes a crutch if you will.

So there’s balance around everything. And this is really what health and wellness really boil down to. It’s knowing when those things serve you. And what are you serving? Those are important things to know. And when you do that your nutrition, again, comes out and it’s very balanced. It’s not extreme at one end or the other. And the result of that, again, is this body and this mind and this soul or whatever you want to call it. It feels good and it looks good.

Juli Bauer: And how do you feel about snacking as well? Because those are the two things I think people ask about the most. They always ask about alcohol; what can I drink, how often can I drink? And then people always ask about snacks. So do you get that question a lot with your clientele as they’re kind of building their new diet and finding a new rhythm in their own eating habits?

Sal Di Stefano: Yeah. So, snacking for most people snacking is just a way to either alleviate anxiety, stress, or boredom. Although some people simple feel better when they eat throughout the day. So we also want to say that. Some people just look at everything and they’re healthy and everything is going great and they just, they try eating three meals or two meals or one meal a day. They just feel better eating throughout the day, which is absolutely fine. So really, I’ve got to look at the individual before I can make an answer. But typically, when I first get a client, I’ll tell them to avoid snacking and we’ll take it from there. And usually we don’t go back to it. Usually we end up not doing it.

For most people, snacking encourages more eating rather than less. Because I know we’ve been told if you snack between meals, you’re less likely to eat a lot of food and it staves off hunger. And actually that’s not true for most people. For most people, once they start eating, appetite increases and they want to eat even more. This is why when you go to a restaurant they serve you chips or bread. If chips or bread made you order less food, restaurants wouldn’t do it. But they know, here’s your carbs, here’s some food. Build up an appetite, you’re going to order more when the menu comes.

Juli Bauer: I’ve never thought of that!

Sal Di Stefano: Yeah. Restaurants definitely would not be serving bread or chips if it made you order less food.

Juli Bauer: Absolutely not. {laughs}

Sal Di Stefano: So yeah. For the most part I tell people let’s not snack, and we go from there.

Juli Bauer: So I don’t want to hold you on here for too long. But I wanted to; for people who are new to Mind Pump. And you obviously have so many episodes. So do you recommend people when they come to your podcast, you recommend them starting from the beginning? Or do you have a favorite episode that you always tell people, go check out this episode. Or I loved interviewing this person. Do you have any favorite episodes that you think are really helpful to people?

Sal Di Stefano: Well we have; I think we have over 600 episodes now.

Juli Bauer: Yeah. Crazy! Crazy.

Sal Di Stefano: We do three episodes a week, which are Q&A, or question and answer episodes. In those titles, we put the questions that we answer. So you can search or navigate, and if one of those resonates with you, we may answer what’s the best method for fat loss with exercise. Or what supplement should I take for this. Or how many grams of fat should I eat for whatever. How do I strengthen this part of my body? You’ll go through and you can see on the titles we have the questions that we answer, and you can pick from there.

We also have, if someone is kind of getting into fitness, what I typically recommend that they do is go to our website, which is, and enroll in 30 days of coaching. And 30 days of coaching, it’s free. It’s a free service that we give everybody. And when you enroll in that, you’ll get the 30 topics that we believe are the most important that you should learn about as somebody starting off with fitness.

So we cover basic subjects like proteins, fats, carbohydrates, calories. But then we get into other subjects like mindfulness, resistance training, what that should look like; cardiovascular training, what that should look like; supplements, and so on. And those topics are covered. And you also have links to episodes where we talk about those topics and they’re time stamped. So if you click on protein, because you want to learn about protein, you’ll have some stuff to read. But then we’ll have like 4 episodes where we talk specifically about protein, time stamps that you can click on. You can fast forward to minute 10.45 whatever, and we’re sitting there discussing protein. So that’s really the best place to start, I think.

Juli Bauer: Are there any podcasts that you listen to yourself? Because I can imagine, if you’re recording that many podcasts, do you like to listen to podcasts? Or you pretty much over it?

Sal Di Stefano: So I listen to ours, only because I’m being super critical and trying to see how we can do a better job. For myself, I listen to Smart Drug Smarts. Great podcast that talks about nootropics and nutrition, how it affects the brain. It’s just super interesting stuff to me. I love Rhonda Patrick, so sometimes I’ll listen to her podcast. Joe Rogan is very entertaining. Sometimes I’ll listen to his. Ben Greenfield has a great fitness podcast that I’ll listen to sometimes. But I tend to pick and choose; like find a topic and then I’ll listen to that topic. And if that encourages me or motivates me to want to learn more about that topic then I’ll end up going to different podcasts to learn as much about that particular topic as I possibly can.

Juli Bauer: And I wanted to ask you this last question, but I feel like this is a big last question. But they obviously can listen to your podcast and kind of see more of your viewpoint on this. But why I really started enjoying listening to you guys is you don’t push supplements. And I feel like in this world we live in, with social media. I mean, my Instagram explore page is just girl’s asses as they do some sort of ass movement. And they finish the video with taking some sort of supplement or some sort of energy drink or whatever.

And what I loved about you guys is you don’t push that. You talk about a green drink that you really, Organifi I think it is. You talk about that a lot. But are there any supplements that you take yourself or that you’ve loved? I’ve never really taken any sort of supplements. I did protein powder a little bit back in the day, and I was like; this seems like an excessive amount of sugar to be having on a regular basis. And I just love collagen. I do collagen in my coffee every single day, and that’s just for my hair and nails because I want my hair to grow. But that’s the only sort of supplement I take in any sort of way. What do you take, or what do you recommend to people? Because that’s a question you’ll get a lot in the fitness world.

Sal Di Stefano: Yeah, and I’m glad you brought this up. A lot of the information that we’re told, and that’s promoted in fitness, is done with the intention of selling us supplements or products. So we touched upon the small meals myth; eating every 2 hours. We’ve all heard it, right? That was pushed and promoted by supplement companies. Because they know that if they sell you on that idea that you need to eat 6 meals a day, it’s very likely that one or two of those meals is going to be a shake or a bar. There’s zero science supporting it; in fact, eating too frequently may actually promote inflammation in some people. And that’s just one example of what we tend to hear.

The medical industry does this with drugs, too. Where they’ll make such a hard focus on one parameter, because they know they can control it with a drug. The fitness industry does the same thing with supplements.

And I’m glad you brought up Instagram. I’m going to go off topic here for a little bit. But social media is a very powerful tool for communication and information. But be careful getting stuck on that. Because they’re finding now that it’s one of the most nefarious tools that we’ve seen in modern history for making people feel terrible about themselves.

Juli Bauer: Yeah. {laughs}

Sal Di Stefano: It is very powerful. I have a daughter; I have a young daughter. She’s 8 years old. And so I’m very aware of social media and its impact. Especially on girls. Because as you’re scrolling through Instagram, you see all these photoshopped pictures of people who look perfect, or whatever. And really don’t represent what people normally look like. And of course our primitive brains starts to think that that’s the average, and then we compare ourselves to the average, and we feel like we’re not enough or whatever. The fitness industry does this to sell you more products, as well, because you feel bad about yourself or whatever.

So be careful with social media. I’d say go on there to get your information or whatever, but be careful and regulate yourself so that you don’t get stuck on there. Because it can really harm people in how they feel about themselves, and then of course that cascades into the bad decisions we make and all that stuff.

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Sal Di Stefano: As far as supplements are concerned, I can make this statement with total ease, ok? The vast majority of supplements are bullsh*t. The vast majority of supplements will do nothing for you.

Juli Bauer: Mm-hmm. {laughs}

Sal Di Stefano: The supplement industry is built on a lot of lies. A lot of exaggerations. A lot of false claims. And they’ve got these private organizations and agencies that will randomly test supplements to see what they have in them. And more often than not, the supplement will have none of what it says it has. Or it will have other things in it. So you’re not even getting what you think you have in the supplement. So you’ve got to be very careful with that.

Now, if you do get supplements. Even the supplements that do work, they play such a small, tiny, fractional role in your overall health, performance, wellbeing, fat loss, muscle building, whatever that if your nutrition and your training aren’t where they should be at, that’s what you should focus on. Taking supplements isn’t going to do much for you.

Now that all being said, if you have a particular need. A nutrient need. A deficiency, like vitamin D deficiency which is quite common. Or if you’re not getting; like you’re taking collagen. Maybe you’re not getting the amino acids proline in your diet or whatever. Then that might benefit you. Creatine is a performance enhancing supplement. It’s been studied forever. It’s really the only supplement that actually gives people results in terms of strength and performance. So creatine I’ll recommend sometimes.

Protein powders; Organifi is a company that sponsors us, and we like them because they’re all organic, minimally processed. But even the most minimally processed proteins are still extremely processed if you compare them to real food. So we tell people; eat real food. But if you’re somebody that has a tough time getting adequate protein for your performance goals, then a protein powder can be a very convenient way to do so.

But really, I rarely recommend supplements unless there’s a specific need. We were talking about adrenal fatigue or HPA axis dysfunction. In that particular case, many times depending on the individual, I’ll recommend ashwagandha. Ashwagandha is an herb that has adaptogenic properties in the body. It has been shown to balance out hormones and stress response in the body. So it can help people initially when they’re coming out of that phase and trying to become more balanced. I’ll have them sometimes supplement with ashwagandha.

Other times, it will be tulsi, which is another ayurvedic herb that has some of those benefits. Other times it may be Siberian ginseng. So it does depend on the individual. There’s pretty much no supplement I tell everybody to take. You know what I mean? It really depends on the person.

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Sal Di Stefano: But focus on nutrition, focus on your sleep, focus on your exercise, and that will take care of 99.999% of everything you need in terms of your fitness goals or wellness goals.

Juli Bauer: Yeah. This is why I totally wanted to have you on the podcast. Because this is why I listen to Mind Pump. Because it’s exactly what I’ve been telling people. Anybody who listens to me, is; listen to your body. Take care of it. Work out. Eat well. Get plenty of sleep. And your body will tell you what to do. And that’s what I love about you guys! It’s just so cool to see these three huge bro-y dudes talking about taking care of their body. It’s just awesome, and it’s not something I witness very often. Especially in the CrossFit community. You just don’t get to see that all that often. So thank you so much for coming on.

Sal Di Stefano: Oh I appreciate it. You know, we were trainers for a long time. And we still train people here and there. And the thing that we all had in common was we really have a deep passion for people. A lot of people get confused and think we’re very passionate about fitness. And to some extent, we are. We love fitness. But we’re really passionate about people. And when you’re training clients for 15 or 20 years, and if you love people, you start to pay attention to things. You start to see things, and what really works long term.

And early on, in our careers, we made a lot of mistakes, like a lot of trainers do where we just hammer people and get them real sore. And it’s all about getting motivated and you’ve got to be disciplined. And I’d get clients that would stay with me for 6 months, or 7 months, or 8 months, and then they’d leave. And I didn’t really make any lasting impact on these people. And if you really want to take care of people, at some point you’ve got to ask yourself, what am I doing wrong? What’s going on here? And you revisit those things.

I’m very blessed to be working with the two cohosts that I have, because they’re both very self-aware men. We can question these things, and question ourselves. It’s really molded and changed our message. I did a post recently on my Instagram page that got a lot of attention. And the title of it was, cardio is a terrible way to lose fat. And I knew it would get a lot of attention because everybody associates cardio with fat loss.

But I did explain why. What’s going on when you’re doing tons of cardio. What kind of adaptation are you asking your body to move towards? And when you do lots of cardio, you’re asking the body to become efficient with calories. AKA, slow down its metabolism. So these long bouts of cardio over and over and over again for long periods of time cause an extremely efficient, slow, low-calorie or low-metabolism based body where your body just stops responding to exercise. And now you’ve got to do all this cardio just to stay where you’re at.

And we have lots of evidence to point to what I’m talking about, where they’ll study modern hunter gatherers and they’ll study the contestants from the Biggest Loser, and all these other people who have lost all this weight. And it’s exactly what happens. And it’s funny because it really struck a nerve. But that was just our observation training people. Where we had clients and it’s like; man, I asked all these people to do all this cardio, and initially they lose weight. And then they stop, and it’s like we hit a brick wall, versus training them with resistance training, slowing things down, getting stronger, and then over time their metabolism speeds up and it’s so much easier to stay lean.

Juli Bauer: Yeah. That’s awesome. How many clients are you coaching now, individually? Since you’re not doing many.

Sal Di Stefano: At the moment; so I work with my girlfriend. She’s an excellent coach, so I like working with her. So we only coach 5 people. I’m not looking to coach tons of people. But again, I love doing it so I’ll probably always do it.

Juli Bauer: That’s awesome. And I think it’s so cool that you want to continue to learn and figure out new stuff. So you’re always still continuing to do that in some way.

Sal Di Stefano: There’s always something to learn in this field. And I love nothing more than to have my paradigm shattered. It’s such an awesome feeling to think something is true, and this is the way. And then to find out that you’re completely wrong. And it’s awesome because you know you just grew. You know that you’re going to move forward and do things better.

Juli Bauer: Yeah. Well, will you tell everybody where they can find you, where they can find Mind Pump, and where they can really contact you if they want to try out any of the MAPS programs.

Sal Di Stefano: Yeah. So our podcast is Mind Pump; you can find it on iTunes, Stitcher, or all the other podcast platforms. Our YouTube channel, which has now been up for about 10 months, has a new fitness video every single day. So the YouTube channel is exercises, workouts, fitness nutrition, some of the stuff on there is comedy. And you can go to that on YouTube. It’s Mind Pump TV. And then our website is and then our Instagram page is Mind Pump Media.

Juli Bauer: Sweet. I’m going to have to check out the YouTube. I haven’t looked at that at all yet.

Sal Di Stefano: Oh yeah, I appreciate it. Thank you.

Juli Bauer: Yeah! Thank you so much for hanging out with me today. For taking the time early in the morning. I really appreciate it. So just stay on the line, I’ll end this. Thank you everyone for listening today. Don’t forget to rate, review, subscribe! Because I hear that’s important. And I will talk to you guys later. See ya!

Today on the podcast I’m chatting with the super cool Sal Di Stefano from Mind Pump. After listening to Joy & Claire from Girls Gone Wod I was super excited to chat with Sal myself and hear a little more about […] Today on the podcast I’m chatting with the super cool Sal Di Stefano from Mind Pump. After listening to Joy & Claire from Girls Gone Wod I was super excited to chat with Sal myself and hear a little more about […] PaleOMG Uncensored yes 1:14:50
Interview with Miranda Chivers – Episode 55: PaleOMG Uncensored Podcast Sat, 21 Oct 2017 12:59:51 +0000 18 Today on the podcast, I’m talking to CrossFit athlete, coach and previous HQ staff Miranda Chivers. We talk about everything from competing in CrossFit, to her breaking her neck, going through knee surgery and giving birth to her first child…all […] Today on the podcast, I’m talking to CrossFit athlete, coach and previous HQ staff Miranda Chivers. We talk about everything from competing in CrossFit, to her breaking her neck, going through knee surgery and giving birth to her first child…all natural. She cray. Wait until you hear her birth story!


Big Thank You to Our Sponsor – ButcherBox

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Support the podcast by clicking the Subscribe button on iTunes and please a review only if you love the podcast! There is enough negativity in this world, don’t spread more. I love hearing about what YOU want me to talk about so feel free to leave on comment here or on social media with topics you’d like me to cover! And don’t forget, some posts have affiliate links which I may be compensated from. This compensation helps with keeping this blog and up and running! Thank you so much for your support, you guys are amazing!


Episode 55 Transcription!

Well hey there buttercup baby. Welcome to another episode of PaleOMG Uncensored. Before I get started with the amazing Miranda, I’ve got to tell you about something that’s super rad. This month’s sponsor. And this month’s sponsor is something I use daily. Every single day I’m using it. It’s Butcher Box. If you haven’t heard me talk about Butcher Box; come on. Get with the program. Follow me on Instagram, man! I talk about it every single day there. Because it is a product I use every single day. Instead of going to the grocery store and trying to decipher through all the different labels out there nowadays, Butcher Box takes that out of the equation.

They find high quality grass-fed and pastured raised meat, and they source it so you can get it straight to your doorstep. They get the best quality beef, chicken, and pork that is humanely raised, and it’s free of antibiotics and hormones. And then all you have to do is open that box up; everything is frozen, put it in your freezer. And then you can cook it as you go. It’s so easy.

So all you have to do is log onto their website. You just select your box. You customize it to your liking, and then you set your schedule of how often you want to receive your Butcher Box. They offer free shipping to the contiguous 48 states, and each classic box is filled with 8 to 11 pounds of meat. And they also launched their custom box. So customers can actually choose everything that comes in their box. So if you only want chicken, do that. If you only want breakfast sausage; I get it. I love breakfast sausage. I just ordered a ton of breakfast sausage in my next box. You can do that. So you can choose exactly what you want. And say you have an event coming up and you want filet mignon, you can trade those things out. You can add on; it’s awesome.

And right now they’re offering PaleOMG Uncensored listeners an awesome discount. You can get $10 off your first order plus two free grass-fed grass finished ribeyes. That’s all you have to do, go to and figure out what box is perfect for you. Again, that’s And you’ll get $10 off your first order and two free ribeyes. This company is awesome, guys. I’m so lucky to get to work with them. And if you want to support the podcast, and support me, and keep this podcast going, check them out. I promise you’re going to be so happy with them. And now, let’s hear from Miranda.

This is Juli Bauer from PaleOMG and you are listening to PaleOMG Uncensored.

Juli Bauer: So welcome everyone to PaleOMG Uncensored. Today I have a very special guest. Her name is Miranda. What is your new last name now, Miranda?

Miranda: {laughs} That’s actually a really in-depth question for the first question.

Juli Bauer: I know! {laughing} Well what do you like to go by now.

Miranda: I actually don’t know the answer to that question. I’m just kidding. I was married, and my last name was Oldroyd. That’s still my last name on my driver’s license. I have not changed it because that’s a pain in the ass.

Juli Bauer: Totally.

Miranda: But I don’t go; I don’t know what I go by. My maiden name is Chivers.

Juli Bauer: Ok.

Miranda: Which pretty much anyone that’s known me through CrossFit has never heard that before. So it’s kind of weird right now. I’m just Miranda, like Madonna.

Juli Bauer: {laughs} Changing your name is such a pain in the ass. So having to change it again; my mom was married previously, before my dad. And then she changed her name, and then when she got married again, she’s like, I’m not doing that again. So she kept her last name {laughs} and never changed it. Because it’s such a freaking pain.

Miranda: It is. It’s like on everything, and then my website was and my Instagram was Miranda Oldroyd.

Juli Bauer: Totally.

Miranda: So yeah, it’s been fun.

Juli Bauer: Well, I know, that was an in-depth question. But before we get started, I want you to tell everyone kind of who you are, so people who maybe aren’t in the CrossFit space or new to CrossFit or just have no idea. Will you explain who you are, where you came from, kind of how you came into the CrossFit community and how your life is? I know that’s such a broad question.

Miranda: {laughs}

Juli Bauer: {laughs} Just kind of your background, athletic background. Because obviously CrossFit is a huge part of your life, and has been for many years. And before you get into that, I just thought of this. Why I wanted to have you on in the first place. Before I started CrossFit, I was very hesitant. I didn’t want to start. And I remember seeing your picture on, and I was like; I want to be like this chick.

Miranda: Aww.

Juli Bauer: You embodied strength, you embodied confidence, and I wanted to be like that. And you really pushed me into CrossFit, without doing anything. And then we competed together back in, I think it was 2011.

Miranda: It was 2011, because I remember meeting you. Yeah.

Juli Bauer: Yes! And I came up to you, and I was like cheesing out! I was like, “I just want to introduce myself.” I’m like interrupting your warmup.

Miranda: {laughs}

Juli Bauer: I’m like; “You’re the whole reason I started CrossFit!” So yeah. We got to compete against each other back in the day, when I first started. So that’s why I wanted to have you on in the first place. You really brought me into the CrossFit world, which is f*cking cool.

Miranda: Aww. Well now I hit you up to ask you what I should wear, so we’re even.

Juli Bauer: Yes, yes! And now we’re on a texting basis. It’s pretty cool.

Miranda: {laughs}

Juli Bauer: So kind of how did you come into CrossFit? What did you do before CrossFit?

Miranda: I was already a personal trainer before CrossFit. So kind of weird; I went to school for interior design, but then I didn’t end up using it because I was coaching spinning classes and some kickboxing classes and stuff while I was in school, and I ended up just loving that more. So then I went and got a personal trainer certificate, and that’s what I was doing when I found CrossFit.

There were no CrossFit affiliates. I’m from Salt Lake City, Utah, which actually a lot of people think I’m from California, but I’m not. I grew up my whole life living in Utah until 2011. And there were no affiliates; CrossFit affiliates back in 2007 in Salt Lake City where I lived. So I went and got certified, opened a gym. It was the first gym in Salt Lake, CrossFit 801. And then yeah. I found CrossFit just online, literally just searching new ways to train. Because I was bored training people the way that I was, and that’s how I found it. And I did it myself at first, at a Gold’s Gym there in Salt Lake. And then started doing it with my clients, and kind of went from there.

After I opened the gym, I wanted to be on the seminar staff, because that was just the coolest thing ever to do. And so I went and got my level 2 certification through CrossFit, and started coaching on the seminar staff. And did that, actually, until about a year ago.

Juli Bauer: How did you get onto the seminar staff?

Miranda: So {laughs} the process back then was much more loose than it is now.

Juli Bauer: Yes. {laughs} Yeah.

Miranda: Basically they had what was called the level 2 back then, was a performance based test. They watched you coach people, and then gave you a pass/fail based off of that only. And the fail rate was like 80% or something like that at these courses. And basically, if you passed, they would invite you to be on this seminar staff {laughs}.

Juli Bauer: Oh, gotcha.

Miranda: So that’s how that happened. I started traveling; and honestly it’s the coolest thing that I got to do that, because I’ve been all over the world coaching people. I’ve met so many; I know people on every continent because of it. It was awesome. It was really fun.

Juli Bauer: And how many years were you on the seminar staff?

Miranda: I was on the seminar staff for; let’s see 2008; 8 years.

Juli Bauer: Damn, that’s a long time. So how many years have you been doing CrossFit?

Miranda: Since fall 2007. My first CrossFit workout was I think on November 2, so it’s coming up. My 10 years is coming up, yeah.

Juli Bauer: Jeeze. How do you remember that? That’s crazy.

Miranda: Because I’m weirdly sentimental like that. I remember dates and numbers.

Juli Bauer: Yeah. When you first tried CrossFit, were you hooked right away or were you like; eh, I don’t know about this. How did you feel about it when you first started?

Miranda: Julian and I will joke all the time. I’m really bad at doing stuff casually. So I had the same experience you did. I saw the nasty girls video with Anna.

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Miranda: Annie, Nicole, and Available.

Juli Bauer: Mm-hmm.

Miranda: And I wanted to be like that. I was like; oh man, they’re so badass. They look good, but also look what they can do type of thing. So I was like; I’m going to do this. But I was basically doing the most body builder type training ever at the time. And I wanted to know if CrossFit; because it seemed to me, one workout a day, there was no way I was going to look like that and be fit like that. Because I was from the body building world, right? But I wanted to know if it would work. This idea of high intensity.

So I dropped all of the bodybuilding stuff, altogether, and decided that for one month I was only going to do the workout of the day, and take the rest days. The three on, one off. I sent an email out to all my friends {laughs} and told them that I was going to try this program and I would let them know what I thought, and I was only going to do this program just to see if it would work. Because if I did other stuff on top of it, then who knows. I don’t think I ever ended up emailing people back; they knew I was in love with it. So yeah, that’s how I started.

Juli Bauer: So you were in bodybuilding before. So when you kind of went into the CrossFit space, were you still trying to keep a bodybuilding type physique? Were you in bodybuilding competitions, or was it just the workouts that you did?

Miranda: I did one fitness competition. Juli, I was Miss Fitness Utah in {laughs} I think it was 2001 or, no it was 2002 or 2003.

Juli Bauer: Wow.

Miranda: So. With the whole dance routine and everything.

Juli Bauer: {laughs} Oh my gosh!

Miranda: I haven’t competed, and I wasn’t interested in competing anymore in bodybuilding or fitness or figure anything after that, I just did that one time. So it had been four years since I had competed. It’s just still the way that I worked out.

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Miranda: Yeah.

Juli Bauer: And what made you love CrossFit so much? What was the main thing?

Miranda: Well I had started working out when I was in high school. So I think by 2007, I’m going to let everyone know how old I am right now. So by 2007, I had been working out regularly for like 8 years. So I was bored of it. And CrossFit was fun. And it crushed me, and I thought I was really fit; because again, I had been working out for 8 years. And I was dead every single time. And you know, as you know, to this day I’m dead every single time. It just made it so much more fun.

Juli Bauer: And then when you were doing CrossFit, when was it that you were like; I want to compete and I want to get to the CrossFit games level?

Miranda: So, that’s so funny because back then there was no, “I’m training for the games!”

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Miranda: I missed the 2007 games because I started a couple of months after them. But in 2008, myself and like 30 members of my affiliate drove from Salt Lake to the CrossFit games. And some of us competed. There were like 5 of us that competed; or maybe not even that many. And everybody else just came. No, actually that was 2009 when a bunch of people came. There was only like 10 of us in 2008. And we competed and you just signed up. You didn’t qualify. There was a scaled division. You just signed up, went, and had fun. And I think I placed 20th and I had been doing CrossFit for like less than a year.

And so yeah, that was it. There was just chaos of people doing workouts everywhere. The judging was funny and nobody really cared. And it was awesome. And there was like a big barbecue. And then in 2009 you had to qualify, and that was the first time. But still people weren’t really training for it. You just still did your workout with your class, and then you went. Whatever. I really wanted to go once it was at Home Depot Center is when it seemed more serious. But I didn’t really start altering my training too much until I moved to California, in 2011.

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Miranda: Yeah.

Juli Bauer: And before we talk more about the CrossFit games, can you talk about your experience with your car accident? Because you went to the CrossFit games after getting into your car accident and breaking your neck, correct?

Miranda: Mm-hmm.

Juli Bauer: So can you kind of talk about that experience? I just have seen stuff on Instagram of your recovery from that. But what happened throughout that?

Miranda: Yeah. So I had competed at regionals in 2012 which was in May. And I got 7th at regionals; I was always so close yet so far away.

Juli Bauer: Yeah {laughs}.

Miranda: {laughs} And then I got in the car accident on June 30th, so like a month after regionals. I was actually working at a seminar here in SoCal when it happened. And I had left during lunch to get coffee for all the trainers, and just never came back. {laughs} The accident happened right in front of the gym. Basically I was T-boned. I was turning left, and the car was going straight and hit my little rental Chevy Cruze and spun me around a couple of times. I ended up; I broke my neck in two places. It’s called a Hangman’s fracture which sounds; it sounds gory so I’ll share it. It basically is like when you hang yourself, the same bones that you will break that paralyze you. That’s what it’s called.

So they took me to the emergency room, obviously, and I had so much adrenaline and the nurse had recognized me. She was a crossfitter {laughs} and she was like, oh my gosh this is awesome! And I was just like, what? I kind of went into joking around, my adrenaline is high, I don’t really feel too much mode. So they ended up not x-raying my neck. Even though I told them it hurt, they were like; oh you just have whiplash. And then kind of gave me a soft collar. My hand was broken too, and they told me I needed to go get a cast on my hand, because they did x-ray my hand.

And then I left. So I had my broken neck, and I left, and went home the next day, and just thought that’s what whiplash felt like. So just, I couldn’t move. I couldn’t brush my teeth. I couldn’t sleep lying down. Nothing. It was really bad. And then the CrossFit games were two weeks after that. And I went; because I was supposed to be. I don’t know if you remember but I used to do sideline reporting, like interviewing the athletes.

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Miranda: I was supposed to be doing that job, and they were like, you can’t do it. You look ridiculous, you can’t even turn your head. This is distracting {laughs}. So they replaced me in my job, and I was super bummed out by it. So much so that I was like; that’s it, I’m going to loosen up my neck {laughs} so that I can at least move well enough to interview people. I ended up getting my job back at the games and worked.

And when I got home from the games, the doctor who had casted my hand, he was concerned about my neck. Because he felt like it was weird they didn’t x-ray it. So he sent me in for an MRI after the games. And that day, the MRI technician called basically and said, you need to go to the emergency room right now. You’ve been walking around; it was 17 total days from my accident to when this happened. You’ve been walking around with a really unstable fracture in your neck. {laughs} And literally if you trip and fall, if you get even a slight rear end at a red light. So many things, if that thing moves, it’s going to paralyze you. So that was terrifying. I went to the emergency room, and then that night they fused my C2-C3 vertebrae together. So yeah, that’s the story. {laughs}

Juli Bauer: So, was recovery difficult after that? Did you have to take a certain amount of time off of working out? What was recovery like?

Miranda: Oh yeah. So, I had to wear a hard collar. One of the really cheesy ones. Actually, a bunch of people dressed up as me for Halloween that year, which was really funny.

Juli Bauer: {laughs}

Miranda: With their neck braces and all. And yeah, I had to wear that hard collar and I wasn’t allowed to drive for almost 2 months. But of course, I’ve always been; again, I can’t just do things casually and I have a really hard time sitting still. So I started, a couple of days after I got out of the hospital. I think I stayed two nights in the hospital. I asked them if I could squat; the nurses at the hospital. And they were like, absolutely not! And I was like, I don’t think you know what I mean. So I showed them a couple of air squats, and they were like; oh yeah, that’s fine.

So I started riding the bike just with no hands, because the twisting was still pretty painful. I pulled the sled a lot. I pulled the sled so much. Just putting it around my waist. I did walking lunges, air squats. I had a goal of doing 1000 air squats a week. And then once I got the cast off my hand, there were a few more things I could do. But anything that was explosive; any Olympic lifting, jumping, kipping. Any of that stuff was out for I think 2 to 3 months, at least.

Juli Bauer: Oh wow.

Miranda: Yeah.

Juli Bauer: Ok. And then, how long after your accident did you kind of join in with these friends, and then make it to the CrossFit Games?

Miranda: Ok, so the accident was 2012, and I had already started working out with my besties over in NorCal. My little family. And I was like, depressed because I missed them. So I would still go to the gym every day and basically watch them workout from the bike.

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Miranda: And then I started; when they were doing stuff I could do, I would add it back in. Then in 2013 I competed at regionals again as an individual, and placed 7th, again. {laughs}

Juli Bauer: {laughs} Dammit! That damn 7!

Miranda: I know. Which actually was; I was really surprised and excited about that, that I placed the same as I did before. So that was fine. That was really cool; that was a really fun year. And Molly competed; that was the first year I met Molly, my really close friend up in NorCal. And then the next year, I wasn’t going to compete on the team. I was like, team’s lame. Whatever, you guys are lame. But I didn’t do very good in the Open {laughs}. Honestly, this is true story; you need to just be on the team with us. Let’s be realistic here. So I was like; ok. So 2014 we did the team, and we ended up placing 5th at the Games. That team was a little bit different than the 2015 team that most people know about. There were a few different members. So I had been training with them already, and that’s why we it was so easy to form the teams. Because we were already all together.

Juli Bauer: And then what happened when you were at the CrossFit games?

Miranda: Which time? {laughs}

Juli Bauer: {laughing}

Miranda: In 2014, we had a couple of bad things. But it was fine; we finished and everything. And then in 2015, on Friday, Saturday morning, we were in first place by like 60 points, and we were so psyched on it, but everyone was really messed up. We did the worm deadlifts on the beach that year, and it really messed people up.

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Miranda: To the point where people were considering dropping out. Like, high ranked teams. Everyone was taped from their calves all the way up to their neck. And we were warming up for the clean and jerk, and people couldn’t even bend over to pick up the bar. And I was really sore. Anyway, the workout was a one-rep clean and jerk, one person at a time. And I got one at 187, and then I went up to 197 and on the clean, I caught it fine, and then when I stood up with it. It was just a power clean. When I stood up with it, my knee completely buckled in, and I fell backwards. I had no pain at all, but I knew something was really; it felt really weird. So I was worried if I stood up I would fall. So I looked around at my team, but we were on a clock, so I just changed the weights the way that I was supposed to for the boys, and just crawled off the floor. {laughs}

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Miranda: And they took me back to medical, and they were like; your ACL is completely torn.

Juli Bauer: Ugh.

Miranda: And it’s like; what do you mean? It doesn’t hurt. Can I try? Let me try to squat. Because the next workout was like wallballs. It wasn’t anything heavy. And they were like, no, you don’t understand. It’s completely torn. That’s why it doesn’t hurt. If it hurt, that would mean there was some of it left. But it’s snapped in half. Like, it’s gone.

Juli Bauer: Ugh! Gross.

Miranda: And so {laughs} me; my, he was still my husband at the time, we were separated and people didn’t know about it, which was awesome.

Juli Bauer: That’s hard. That’s so hard.

Miranda: But he’s still such a close friend, so it was nice to have him there. And then Jason Khalipa, my teammate, was in there. And Castro; Dave Castro. And me and Jason were like; well, wrap it up. Whatever. We’ll deal with it after the Games. We’re winning. We’re crushing it. Let’s go.

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Miranda: And Dave was like; absolutely not. {laughs}

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Miranda: He was like, I’m not going to let you go out there and so many eyes are on you guys, and have your hurt yourself worse and have it be all over the internet. No. That’s not; we’re not doing that. So that was really hard. We tried everything we could with the rule book, with you guys can’t tell us whether or not we can continue. We get to decide. She’s messed up, but if she wants to try to do it she should be allowed to do it. All this stuff. It was so dramatic. And finally, they made me sit in the stands, because they were like, you guys just need to calm down. We know you came to win, and you were winning, but it’s over. You guys are done. So that was honestly psychologically way worse of a time in my life than the physical ACL tear.

Juli Bauer: That was so sad. Seeing you cry, because you could see pictures of you crying. You looked so, so sad. I don’t think people understand who have not been CrossFit competitive athletes. They don’t understand how much actual time goes into prepping before a competition. And especially when you’re working as a group and timing is so critical of making sure you guys are exactly the same throughout. So you put so much time, energy, and work into this. And to be told no in that one second, that must have been so, so hard.

Miranda: Well, it was. And I haven’t really; this is the first time I’ve talked about where my life status was at at the time. I was already a mess in my personal life. So there was that, but I think honestly the worse part was our team was different in that those, to this day, are some of my best friends. I talk to Jason at least once a week. I talk to Molly and Jen every single day. I talk to Alex at least once a week. I talk to Pat probably at least once a month. Those are my best friends, and it hurt me that; I felt like it was my fault type of a thing. Even though, obviously, I couldn’t have controlled it. But that was really painful to go through, because we had all worked so hard. And we knew that we were going to in and be able to win, because we had worked so hard and we had such a good team. So that sucked.

Juli Bauer: So how do you feel about CrossFit; since you’ve been in it almost from the beginning. You’ve been there, you’ve seen how the CrossFit Games have changed. And when people ask me, they’re like; do you wish you competed anymore?

Miranda: {laughs}

Juli Bauer: And for me, I think absolutely not. Because I adore CrossFit, and it has given me so much. But I don’t love everything they’re doing in the Games anymore. Because I think it can be so detrimental to one’s body. So how do you see how CrossFit has changed? Do you see it changing over time? That it’s gotten so f*cking crazy at this point that it’s going to kind of take a step back? What do you think about CrossFit, and the Games, and how it’s come and changed over time?

Miranda: Yeah. So I think unfortunately what has happened in a lot of ways, and I know they try to battle it. Is that people see CrossFit the program and the CrossFit Games as the same thing.

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Miranda: And it’s absolutely not the same thing. The CrossFit games is a sport for athletes, full time. These people; that’s all they do. They make no money. They can’t have a regular job. A lot of them are younger now, you’ll notice. And it’s not just because they’re younger in that they haven’t wrecked their bodies, but they have free time and can still live with their parents, to be honest. {laughs}

Juli Bauer: Yeah. {Laughs}

Miranda: It’s so impressive to me to see when people have kids, and a family, and a job that go, but that’s becoming more and more rare. And I don’t see people having super long careers in the CrossFit Games anymore, for those reasons. For the fact that there’s really no money in it, and it is really hard on your body. So I think it’s awesome to have that as a goal. And then if you go and do pretty well, to try to go back and win.

But I do see people that hold onto it for way too long, to be honest. And we kind of joke about that. And then I do see people that have so much going on that’s good in their life that they sacrifice, maybe. And it’s just not; it’s not going to be as fulfilling, I think, as some people think it’s going to be. You’re not going to become famous just because you go. You’re not going to become rich. If you do it, it should be solely because you love it.

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Miranda: And then everyone else needs to just hit the workout of the day one time. You don’t need your percentage work for your Oly lifts. {laughs} And you don’t need all these accessory programs or all this stuff to be fit. Or to even look fit. You can look a lot like a CrossFit Games athlete without working out four times a day if you just eat correctly, and hit the workouts hard, you know.

Juli Bauer: I think that was something that was hard for me to understand. When I competed, I was like, more is always better. And then I would think; oh, my physique will look even better the more I do and the more work I put into it. And that is just so not the case. I wish more women understood, that if you just have a good workout, and you eat clean, your body will show it if you continually do that. It doesn’t have to be 4 hours in the gym. And I think that is what is so amazing about CrossFit. And you don’t have to be a Games athlete to look incredibly fit, too.

Miranda: I know. And that’s exactly; I know some people on your Instagram were asking about our street parking program. And that’s kind of where it came from. Was I was traveling a ton last year. All over the place. Not for seminars anymore, but just for fun. And for Progenics. And then Julian, his business was getting super busy, so he was ending up having to workout at home a lot, and he was so stressed out that he wasn’t training as much. And I would tell him; hey, when I used to train with Jason, because Jason owns this massive business, he would hit something really quick in the morning, super intense, and then maybe one time again later that day, just super intense. But you can be really efficient with your time. You don’t need to spend all day.

He almost didn’t even sign up for the open this year, because he was like; I haven’t been training enough. I’m not good enough, type of thing. Because he had in his brain that volume equals fitness. And then he did so awesome all through the Open, all through Regionals, and surprised himself. And that’s when we were kind of like; people have the wrong idea. You can grab a couple of sets of dumbbells and get really fit at your house. It doesn’t need to be that complicated.

Juli Bauer: So for people who don’t know, Julian is your boyfriend, right? Not your husband. But boyfriend.

Miranda: He; yeah. Boyfriend, we feel weird about that term.

Juli Bauer: Totally. {laughs}

Miranda: We feel like we’re in 8th grade.

Juli Bauer: Well how did you two meet?

Miranda: More like partner/baby daddy, I don’t know. {laughs}

Juli Bauer: Yeah, baby daddy. {laughing} How did you two meet?

Miranda: So I know Becca and Chris Clever, who he was training with. And had a couple of other friends at the gym where he was training. And I was in town for a seminar. So I went to the gym, it was on October 16th of 2015. {laughs}

Juli Bauer: {laughing} I don’t even know what the date is today. I don’t know how you remember it. {laughs}

Miranda: Neither do I; that’s gone out the window now. But I went there just to work out with them, because I was in town and I had a day before the seminar. And I met him. And actually, this is a romantic comedy story, kind of. There was a guy who was trying to commit suicide {laughs}; hold on. Just wait for the end of it.

Juli Bauer: {laughs} You’re like; wait. I swear it’s a comedy.

Miranda: {Laughs} In LA, he was threatening to jump off the 405 or something like that. So they shut down the 405. And anyone that lives in Southern California knows; well, you might as well stay home for the rest of the day. You can’t even drive down the street. And that’s what happened when I was at the gym.

So I asked him as I was leaving; hey, is there anywhere around here I can walk to go eat until this traffic dies? And he was like, you know what, I’ll take you. Let’s just go together. So yeah, we went and ate, and that was it. And the day after the seminar, I was down here looking for somewhere to live, because I was planning on moving down here, and so we went and got pizza the day after the seminar I feel like. And then we just talked; it kind of went from there. And I moved down here. And he was in LA and I was all the way in Newport, which is like an hour and a half distance between. So yeah. That’s how we met, was just at the gym.

Juli Bauer: Oh, that’s awesome. And then you guys started, what you were just talking about, Street Parking together. Which is kind of your online programing for people; fitness programming. If you can kind of explaining to everyone.

Miranda: Yeah. Both of us had been posting these super simple; whether it was me in a hotel or him in his garage. He came on some of the trips with me and we would post these random hotel gym workouts. And we noticed that; he could post a, “I’m doing 225-pound snatches and muscle up video.” And then the next day he could post a “I’m doing pushups and air squats in the hotel gym video.” And the pushups and air squats one would get way more views, way more comments, way more people tagging each other like, “We should do this!”

And we were like, man. There’s really something to this. There are so many programs out there for competitors, it’s ridiculous. But there’s not really anything for people who are traveling a lot and have lives like ours. So, we’re like, we should just create something super simple. And our goal was to get 100 members {laughs} by the end of January. And now we have like 1700 members.

Juli Bauer: Wow.

Miranda: It’s crazy. It’s become like a fulltime job for both of us.

Juli Bauer: When did you start that?

Miranda: Well the first workout was posted on January 1st.

Juli Bauer: Ok. Wow. So coming up on a year.

Miranda: Yeah.

Juli Bauer: That’s crazy. So people can just sign up.

Miranda: There’s a really cool community on Facebook, where people are like; I didn’t want to wake up today. But I know that all of you guys woke up today, so I woke up and did the workout! It’s so awesome. It’s like having an affiliate, even though you’re by yourself.

Juli Bauer: That’s awesome. So people can do these workouts anywhere? Do they need a certain amount of equipment if they want to do it in their garage or whatever?

Miranda: Yeah, we set it up so that it varies for what equipment you have. So we have program A; basically if you have a couple of sets of dumbbells and a jump rope, you’re going to be able to do all the workouts. And there’s a workout for that group every day. Program B is the same workout, basically, but the version with the barbell if you want to do it with the barbell, or if you have a barbell. And two or three times a week, we’ll have a program C version of the workout where, if you have a rower or a bike, or if you want to try doing stuff on the rings. Or just a GHD maybe. You have a more full garage gym, there will be a version of that at least a couple of times a week where you can throw that extra equipment in there.

Juli Bauer: Ok, sweet. That’s awesome. Well, congratulations on starting this new business that you didn’t really see even happening.

Miranda: {laughs} I know. Thank you.

Juli Bauer: And you don’t own CrossFit 801 anymore, correct?

Miranda: No. When we moved, we sold it to one of our trainers. It still exists. It’s still in Utah. But I’m not organized enough to own a gym from a different state.

Juli Bauer: Yeah, seriously. I don’t know how people would do that. Ok, I wanted to make sure I left a big chunk of time for this, because this is a huge new chapter in your life. You gave birth to a little baby boy how long ago now?

Miranda: 8 weeks tomorrow.

Juli Bauer: 8 weeks. So how are you feeling at 8 weeks so far?

Miranda: Well, when we were supposed to have this call, I was like; Juli, can I work out really quick? And I was dying. And I feel like {laughs} of all the injuries I’ve had. Because I know people are super impressed with the neck and the knee; and people have babies every single day and go back to CrossFit, but this is definitely the most out of shape I’ve been. I’m sleep deprived and everything. It’s so much joy, and I love him so much, and I wouldn’t trade any of it for the world. But it’s definitely hard, for sure.

Juli Bauer: I heard it’s very hard. {laughs} I am very much on the fence about ever having children, and everyone’s like, it is the biggest blessing, it’s the greatest thing you will ever experience, but f*ck it is awful sometimes. {laughs} And it sounds so incredibly hard. So I do want to hear; I just had two friends just this week give birth, so I’ve heard two different stories. Can you kind of tell your, just were you sick very much? Did you workout when you were pregnant? And then kind of your birth story, and we can kind of talk about postpartum.

Miranda: Yeah. So I found out I was pregnant. I was pretty newly pregnant. I want to say I was only like 6 weeks, because I was always really regular and stuff like that. So I knew pretty early. And the only major symptom I had at first; I never got sick, so that’s nice. The only symptom I had was I was so tired. Like, to the point where I had to call Julian when I was driving home from work because I thought I was going to crash and die tired. 2 o’clock in the afternoon came around, and I could not keep my eyes open. It was really hard. And that was the major, major symptom that I had at first.

Then after that, I had really bad heartburn. I never had a hard time sleeping. I worked out pretty much through the whole thing. Even when I was tired, I think I still worked out at least 4 days a week. And I know, I’ve seen a lot of people ask comments, like how is that possible. I’m so tired; I was tired too. It’s just the only thing that made me feel somewhat normal. And it actually made me have more energy when I would workout. So there were a couple of times, honestly. Oh, and I was obviously super emotional and hormonal. I remember one time I was crying in my room for who knows why. And Julian was just like, come ride the bike. And I was literally sitting on the bike, crying for 10 minutes, and that was my workout for that day.

Juli Bauer: Yeah. I feel like when you care so much about your workouts, but then once you have this huge life change. Whether it’s illness, or having a baby, or healing from a knee. Just moving in general; even if you’re walking or sitting on the bike. Just continually moving is so important to get through those challenging; just different changes in life.

Miranda: Oh yeah, it would help me so much mentally, emotionally, and then obviously I think that’s the reason I slept ok. I didn’t have too much pain and stuff like that, like in my joints. Towards the end I got kind of swollen, but it was really towards the end that my feet got swollen, stuff like that, and I really think it was because I was moving.

I know people on your Instagram asked, too, about food, like cravings and stuff. I never really had any. {laughs} Like a couple of times, I was like; I feel like a cookie. But I do that now, so I don’t think that was…

Juli Bauer: Yeah, nothing crazy different.

Miranda: Yeah. I ate almost exactly the same as what I was eating before. Because I wasn’t working out as much with as much intensity. So I was like, well there’s my extra calories. I’ll just keep eating what I’m eating. And still now, that’s pretty much what I’m eating.

Juli Bauer: The same.

Miranda: Yeah.

Juli Bauer: What kind of changes did you have to do to your normal CrossFit workouts. Your normal Street Parking workouts you were doing in your garage?

Miranda: I didn’t take too much out until February. So I found out I was pregnant in November, and I kept everything pretty normal. But it was hard to breathe. I could tell I was more tired. I read that you have like 30% more blood in your body when you’re pregnant, and I could tell my heart was working extra hard during that time even though I hadn’t really gained too much weight or anything. After the Open, I started taking stuff out. The Open was the last time I did toes to bar, bar muscle ups, muscle ups, all that kind of stuff.

And I never really felt great lifting heavy. I felt like my joints felt weird when I would lift heavy. And I know a lot of people do lift heavy when they’re pregnant, but it didn’t feel right to me. And then the belly didn’t really get in the way until I was like maybe 7 months pregnant.

I mean, I just kind of took it day by day. I box jumped until one day I did a box jump it felt weird, and then I never box jumped again. I could do double unders, even towards the end, but why? I don’t need to be doing that. I don’t need to be bouncing around with a baby in there.

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Miranda: I hate running, so as soon as I was pregnant, I was like; “you know what, I don’t think running is safe.”

Juli Bauer: {laughs}

Miranda: Like, this is dangerous. {laughs} I don’t think I should ever run again for that matter.

Juli Bauer: {laughs} I think I saw a comment on there that a woman is like; obviously CrossFit was out of the equation or something along those lines. I think it’s strange to me that people still see that as a thing that people can’t workout or can’t physically do things. Because I’ve seen some women who were really great with CrossFit and then once they got pregnant they had to slow it down a lot to keep their heart rate down. While others were able to just push through completely. So when you say; ok, a box jump didn’t feel good anymore. Or double unders didn’t feel great anymore; you just took it out. So I think women need to understand that every person is completely different.

Miranda: Yeah.

Juli Bauer: And you can still continually workout, especially if you’ve been working out beforehand. You just have to listen to your body, because it’s continually changing every day.

Miranda: Yeah. Luckily, I know so many women like you do who have done CrossFit before, had a baby. So there’s people to ask. And the only consistent advice that I got was; “You shouldn’t have to lie down after your workout.” If you’re out of breath, dying, you can’t talk, that’s probably not good for your fetus.

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Miranda: So I would always make sure that I could talk. And then when the workout was over, I needed to be physically capable to walk like a 400 meter immediately the second I was done. And that’s what I did the whole time.

I mean, that’s a thing when I would post videos. I think there were people that didn’t know me before I was pregnant, had somehow found me through the pregnant hashtags I was using or something, and they would be like, I can’t believe you’re doing that! But if you had seen what I was doing before, it actually was extremely scaled. So I think sometimes people don’t understand. Yeah.

Juli Bauer: Totally. Yeah. So, my girlfriend. I was at her house yesterday, and she was telling me a little bit about her birth story.

Miranda: Oh boy.

Juli Bauer: She was like; Juli, there’s a reason nobody talks about childbirth. It is not a great experience whatsoever.

Miranda: {laughing}

Juli Bauer: She was like, when you walk in the door, get the epidural. Don’t be a hero, get the epidural. And I’ve heard that from multiple people. So will you just tell your birth story? Did you have an at home birth?

Miranda: I had a birth at a midwifery.

Juli Bauer: Ok.

Miranda: It’s basically like having it at a hotel where drugs are not an option because they do not have them. And you can do the bathtub and comfy bed and all that stuff. But you don’t have to clean up after it, so that’s why I didn’t want to have it at my house. We have like four dogs, and it just would not have been relaxing.

Juli Bauer: No!

Miranda: Not that it’s relaxing, but.

Juli Bauer: No. Because you know what? It’s like, why does nobody talk about how you have to give birth to the placenta after you give birth to your child?

Miranda: {laughing}

Juli Bauer: Why does nobody talk about that? It’s like, hey, no I have to give birth twice. This is so f*cked up. So wait, tell me your birth story. Let’s hear this birth story at the midwife place.

Miranda: Ok, I’m going to try to be as honest with you as possible.

Juli Bauer: I love it. I love the honesty.

Miranda: Ok. How many people listen to this?

Juli Bauer: Oh I have absolutely no idea.

Miranda: Whatever, ok.

Juli Bauer: In my mind, like 5. {laughs}

Miranda: Ok. It’s just me and you.

Juli Bauer: Just me and you here.

Miranda: So first of all, let’s go to my due date was July 28th. And I’m an achiever, and I control my fate, and he did not come out on July 28th, and I was so upset. He was 3 days late. But even yesterday or two days ago I told somebody that he was 9 days late, because that’s how my brain remembers those three days. Like, I was so upset. And actually going back to the workout thing, they told me not to workout, because they thought he was small. So they didn’t want me to workout anymore for like the last week of my pregnancy. And by the day he was supposed to come out, Julian was like; screw that. Go out to the gym, do what makes you feel normal. Workout. So the day that I actually went into labor, I worked out that night, the night before. And I think that’s what helped, just get me to freaking relax.

So then at 2 a.m. I woke up and I had pretty strong pains in my stomach. But I’ve never had a baby before, so I dealt with it for a couple of hours. And then I woke Julian up and I was like, I don’t know if these are labor pains or if it’s just uncomfortable. He was like, let’s go for a walk. So we took the dogs for a walk, and they were getting worse and stuff like that. So he was like, I think we should call the midwife.

So I had a doula. This is all very southern California, by the way. Whatever, you’re in Colorado. Same thing.

Juli Bauer: Yeah. {laughs}

Miranda: I had a doula, so we called our doula, and she came over. And they were definitely contractions by the time she got there. So it was freaking painful. Like your friend said; I wasn’t like humming through it. I’m not like a yogi/Zen person. It was really bad.

So she was there for a while, because you’re not supposed to go to the hospital or to the midwifery until your contractions are like 2 minutes apart, basically. Because they don’t want you there for two days. When it’s almost time to start pushing, that’s when they want you to come.

So she stayed there and timed it. It was really bad, really painful. My mom was here. Julian’s mom lives with us, so she was here. And Julian and the doula. And there’s nothing anyone can do to help you, really.

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Miranda: Everyone feels so helpless. But they helped me get my stuff ready, and they were timing everything. And then when we were driving to the midwifery, finally, it was like 11 a.m. so I had been in pain for like 9 hours at that point. {laughs}

Juli Bauer: And is it just like really bad cramps?

Miranda: Yeah, but really bad.

Juli Bauer: Like pressure?

Miranda: Yeah. And I remember people telling me because I’m so fit my birth was going to be super easy. I wasn’t out of breath. It just hurt {laughs}. Being fit doesn’t make someone punching you in the face hurt any less {laughs}.

Juli Bauer: Yeah, exactly.

Miranda: You know, so that went out the window. So we drove at like 11. Julian, of course; all my best friends were at the CrossFit Games competing. Because Molly and Jen, they have a team again this year. So he’s like face timing them. I’m sobbing in the car, in so much pain in the back seat. I look up and I see my friends on face time. They’re like; good job!

Juli Bauer: Oh my god! Oh my god!

Miranda: And I’m like, hi, oh my gosh. Anyway. We get there, and they check for how dilated you are. Basically you have to be dilated to a 10 before you can push. And I was only at like a 4, ok. So they were like; you’re at a 4. I was like; what the heck. I’ve already been having contractions for like 9 hours.

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Miranda: So whatever. And then they came back in, I want to say like 2 or 3 hours later, and they were like ok, let’s check you again. And I had been, again, having painful contractions the whole time in between that at the midwifery. They checked me again, I was still at a 4.

Juli Bauer: And, like how far apart are your contractions at this point?

Miranda: Like one every minute and a half or something like that.

Juli Bauer: Oh my god! This sounds just like my friend.

Miranda: And they last for a while minute.

Juli Bauer: That’s so f*cked up.

Miranda: I know. And Julian was such a champion. Literally, he held me up every single time, my full body weight was on him. I got in the bath for a lot of it. He was feeding me sticks of honey, and making me eat trail mix and stuff. He did not leave; I think he only left the room once to pee and eat something, but he was gone for like 5 minutes. So he was just like; oh my gosh, how much longer is this going to take?

Juli Bauer: Seriously.

Miranda: Exhausted, you know, and I’m just screaming and crying and whatever. So when they came back and told me I was still only a 4 after 12 hours almost of being in that much pain, in my head, I was like, I can’t do this. You’ve got to take me to the hospital.

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Miranda: I can’t do this. And Julian {laughs} I remember one time they left us alone in the room, and he was like; you are not going to let these midwife ladies think that you can’t do this. {laughs}

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Miranda: So I was like, ok. Honestly, they offered me laughing gas. {laughs}

Juli Bauer: Oh, that’s cool.

Miranda: Yeah. That’s the pain medication; it helps you to relax, basically. Because they told me my problem was every time I was having a contraction, I was tightening my whole body. Because that’s what I’m conditioned to do.

Juli Bauer: Uh, duh. Who wouldn’t do that?

Miranda: Yeah, so my whole body would tighten and he wasn’t able to move and get lower and all this stuff. So they were like, if you have the gas, it’s not necessarily going to hurt less, but you’re going to be able to relax. So I was like, I don’t know. I wanted to do this 100% natural only. I feel like I’m cheating if I do that. And Julian was like; babe, don’t be a hero. You’ve got to have the gas. You need to relax right now. So we did that.

And then she came in, and this is going to be graphic sounding, but she manually opened me up from a 4 to a 7.

Juli Bauer: Ohhh! No! No.

Miranda: I threw up everywhere.

Juli Bauer: Shut up.

Miranda: While she was doing it.

Juli Bauer: This is f*cking crazy.

Miranda: I was projectile vomiting on Julian. {laughing}

Juli Bauer: Oh my god! {laughing} Oh my god.

Miranda: My mom and his mom were watching; my mom was probably like, what the heck.

Juli Bauer: Oh my god. See, this is why people never talk about childbirth. That’s f*cking crazy.

Miranda: Yeah. And then from there, I ended up sitting on the toilet for like an hour and a half, because that was the only place I could relax {laughs}. And I got from a 7 to a 10 in the next hour or hour and a half. And then finally I was like; my body is pushing him out. I can’t stop it. And they were like, ok get in the tub. I only pushed for like 45 minutes. And while that was super painful, I felt like…

Juli Bauer: Only 45 minutes! {laughing}

Miranda: Yeah. I was in control of it at that point, though. I knew I could assist this now. I could actually physically do something to help get him out of me.

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Miranda: So literally every time there was a contraction, I was treating it like I was pulling my one-rep max deadlift, and just…

Juli Bauer: Yeah, you know how it should feel.

Miranda: I was like, I don’t care if I tear. I don’t care what happens. He needs to come; get him out of me. So 45 minutes I pushed. He came out. And then he didn’t breathe for 2 minutes after that.

Juli Bauer: Oh f*ck.

Miranda: So I don’t really remember it being 2 minutes long, because I was so out of it, but Julian is like scarred for life from this 2 minutes of him not breathing.

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Miranda: So they pulled him out, and he was just kind of limp. And I was in the bathtub, and I was still connected to him. So they were like, stand up, Miranda, you need to stand up. So I had to stand up right away {laughs}.

Juli Bauer: Oh my god.

Miranda: And they had to pump him a few times, and clean out his mouth and stuff like that and he was fine. Everybody else said that it was terrifying, but I don’t really remember it that much.

Juli Bauer: Yeah. And then, so then they cut the cord. And you have to give birth to the placenta, right?

Miranda: Yeah, but that doesn’t hurt that bad because it kind of comes out a little easier.

Juli Bauer: Yeah, because it’s not a head.

Miranda: Yeah, it’s more like; this is f*cking annoying. Can I be done now? Seriously. But it doesn’t really hurt.

Juli Bauer: Yeah. That’s exactly what my friend said. She was like, it’s just annoying. And she was like; and they took my baby, because he was the same. He was unresponsive. And they just had to clean his nose and everything, and she was like, “Give me my f*cking baby back!” Like freaking out.

Miranda: Yeah. So that was the nice thing, they never took him from me. He was attached to me, and then they cut the cord. But I was lying right there when they did it. They put him on my chest right away. And here’s the craziest, actually. Let’s get to when I came home. Because the midwifery is different than the hospital, and you should just know this if you’re going to go this route. They made sure that he could latch onto my boob and breastfeed before I left. I had to get like two stitches, so they did that. And I felt totally fine. And then as we were getting ready to leave, I started to not feel fine. I was not fine.

We left; I came home like 4 hours after he was born.

Juli Bauer: Oh wow.

Miranda: {laughs} And that night, I’m not joking, I told Julian that this is how the pioneers died, from childbirth.

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Miranda: And I was like, he’s going to be a single father. I’m dying. I was so depleted. The adrenaline was gone. I was in so much pain. I had a massive bruise, like hematoma from where I had given birth. I couldn’t sit. {laughs} I was like, this is how death happened on the plains. {laughing}

Juli Bauer: F*ck yeah! Yeah. How did anybody survive? How did we make it this far? I don’t understand.

Miranda: I don’t know. I don’t know. And it makes you question how tough you really are. Because you see these little tiny women with their babies, and you’re like; how was I such a pussy about it? She had a kid. It was fine. I don’t know. But it was traumatic for me and Julian both.

Juli Bauer: Yeah! Oh my god, especially if you’re projectile vomiting {laughing}. That is crazy. It’s crazy just how everyone’s story is so; you can read all the books in the world but none of it matters because everyone’s story is so different in their birth story.

Miranda: Yeah.

Juli Bauer: It’s so crazy.

Miranda: Oh, also I should mention that Julian did get in the bathtub with me and he did kind of help catch him, because he was really excited about that and that was really cool that he did that.

Juli Bauer: Jeeze. That’s crazy! Wow. Ok, so that’s bananas. So let’s now talk about postpartum. So obviously you’re breastfeeding.

Miranda: Yeah.

Juli Bauer: Ok. And that has gone smoothly?

Miranda: Yeah, it’s been pretty smooth. It’s hard because there will be days where he wants to eat every single hour, so you don’t sleep and you can’t work or do anything or whatever. But he doesn’t have a hard time eating, which I know a lot of people struggle with, so I’m lucky that way.

Juli Bauer: Yeah. So have you had trouble sleeping as you’ve been into this postpartum stage and having to wake up every hour or so? Have you guys kind of switched off, bottle fed or anything like that?

Miranda: I haven’t ever bottle fed him at night. If I’m home, and I’m not working out, I try to feed him. Pretty much the only time we bottle feed him is if we are with him, out of the house, so I don’t have to worry about the whole bringing the breastfeeding cover and all that stuff. We’ll just feed him with a bottle. Or if I’m working out, and he wakes up, then he’ll get bottle fed. But pretty much other than that I feed him. At night, I sleep at 2 hours at a time. That’s just how it is now.

Juli Bauer: Yeah. And how long did you take off until you started working out again? And kind of what; and this is based on some of the questions I’ve gotten. What kind of workouts have you been doing? How have you been working on the pelvic floor? I always hear about the pelvic floor with women. But I don’t really know what that means. {laughs}

Miranda: Yeah. They’re like the inside muscles, Juli. It’s why people pee for the rest of their life after they have a baby, when they do double unders and stuff. Because they get weaker.

Juli Bauer: Did you ever pee in double unders before having a baby?

Miranda: Yeah, I did.

Juli Bauer: You did? So many women at the gym. I’ve never had that before, but so many women at the gym have that.

Miranda: Yeah, I’ve peed before. So you can look up pelvic floor; Birth Fit has good stuff on there. The girl that I work with, her Instagram is like @Brianna Battles. She’s who worked with Lindsey Valenzuela, which is why I reached out to her. Because Lindsey had such a crazy come back. And basically it’s just tightening the inside muscles back up so that everything goes back to normal. There’s so much trauma. It’s just rehab for a different set of muscles. I started doing that stuff like 2 weeks after.

And then walking was huge. Just to get out of my house and feel like I was burning some calories. I was walking for like an hour a day, just pushing my little stroller, my little guy in the stroller to feel like I was moving, and getting my blood flowing and sweating a little bit. And then I just started adding things in slow. I still had the big huge bruise, hematoma, until like a week ago. I couldn’t even ride the bike.

Juli Bauer: Oh my god.

Miranda: But I started doing some slow air squats or wall balls and stuff like that. And then I have taken the same approach that I took when I was pregnant. If I try something and it feels weird, then I won’t do it yet. I’m adding weight back in slowly. And some stuff I know I could do. I’ve done some pullups, but also it feels weird in my abs when I do them. It still feels like it stretches them a little bit. So I’m just waiting, you know.

Juli Bauer: Ok. And you’ve felt good coming back pretty much?

Miranda: I mean, I feel really, really out of shape.

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Miranda: But {laughs} yeah, I don’t have any pain. I actually got checked by a pelvic floor PT. They have those.

Juli Bauer: Oh cool.

Miranda: And she said that everything actually feels really well rehabbed from what I’ve been doing. I’ve been pretty diligent at working on that stuff for at least 15 minutes a day. And I know people were asking about the ab separation too. Mine was super minimal. I’ve seen or heard of stories of people where it’s like; they measure it by finger widths, how many fingers you can fit in between the middle part of your abs. And mine’s only like a 1. But people have like 4 fingers’ worth that they can fit in between there.

Juli Bauer: Wow.

Miranda: Yeah. So mine was super minimal. The only reason I got it checked was just to make sure. You just have to be careful for a little bit. Because it’s still so stretched out. People are like, what do you mean it stretches? And I’m like…

Juli Bauer: What do you mean? Yeah.

Miranda: Of course it stretches. {laughs}

Juli Bauer: Yeah, duh! {laughs}

Miranda: It has to, for the baby. It has to go somewhere.

Juli Bauer: So obviously you are a person who cares about not only the workouts you do but how you physically feel. How you look on the outside. You want to stay physically fit and your body is important. So how has it been, not only going through the stages of pregnancy, but afterwards and dealing with your body looking completely different than what you visually want to see in the mirror. Or what you have seen for so many years. How has it been going through that mentally?

Miranda: Honestly, I think it’s really hard, and every woman goes through it no matter what. I mean, as cheesy and dumb as it sounds, I feel like on some level, it’s like I’m known for my abs. {laughs}

Juli Bauer: Yeah, yeah. For sure.

Miranda: And that’s not that exciting to be known for. And you think that you don’t care, but you end up, you know, caring. I’ve actually; a couple of funny stories. I’ve lost a solid 3000 Instagram followers since I’ve had my baby.

Juli Bauer: Aww!

Miranda: Actually, since becoming pregnant. I had a huge drop. And then when I started posting pictures of my baby, and of me working out in a sports bra afterwards {laughs} I’ve lost like another 1500.

Juli Bauer: Ugh! You can’t look at those numbers! Don’t look at them!

Miranda: I know. I laugh about it, but at the same time, of course you’re like; aw man. That sucks. But that’s silly. And then the other day I was so tired. Half the time I don’t change out of my underwear or PJs until like 1 o’clock in the afternoon, and I’m holding little baby Knox, and I walk past the full-length mirror in our bedroom, and I just catch a glimpse of my body and my tired face and my hair and everything, and I was like, oh no. I put him down, I turned the mirror around. I was like, I can’t keep walking past this every day. So yeah. It’s really tough.

And then of course, there are the days; Julian tries to be super supportive, and I’m like; you have no idea! You got to compete at regionals, and you still look awesome! This and that. You don’t’ know how hard it is, type of a thing. So of course I try to stay positive. And I’ve been committed to posting real pictures of myself, just because I know there are so many people that can benefit from that. But it’s not because I’m not affected by it.

Juli Bauer: Yeah. Yeah. I feel like a lot of women don’t talk about that because; you just created a baby! And not every woman gets to do that, too. So, there’s this part of you that doesn’t want to complain about anything. But that’s something, I think that’s very hard for women is seeing their body change. But do you feel excited about kind of what the future has to bring, and what your body is going to be able to do in the future?

Miranda: Well it kind of brings it back to fun again. Because I’m like you; I have no interest in competing. Honestly.

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Miranda: I’ll do; if a friend of mine is like, hey let’s go do this Saturday comp, I’ll be like, sure let’s go. Or me and Julian did a team comp together last year that was like; we decided the night before to do it type of thing. Fine.

But it gives me a new goal, now. And it’s fun. Well, every time I’ve been injured and now, you get to have your post-surgery PR, and now I get to PR everything again. And I get to do; like I’m so excited for when I get to try to do muscle ups again. And I’m so excited for when I get to add things back in. So it kind of makes it more fun again, to be honest.

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Miranda: So yeah.

Juli Bauer: That’s awesome. Well, I want to ask a couple of questions before you go, because I know I’ve held you for an hour and I’m sure that your child needs to feed again.

Miranda: {laughs}

Juli Bauer: So, I want to ask you. This is totally not even on the birth realm of things, because we kind of talked a lot about that. But, I know so many people say that you look; and I hope I’m saying your name right. Dana Lynn Bailey; like Dana.

Miranda: {laughs} Yeah.

Juli Bauer: So everybody says you look like her; and she’s in the bodybuilding community, correct?

Miranda: Yes.

Juli Bauer: So, how did you guys end up coming together, and what was it like meeting this person that everyone says is your doppelganger?

Miranda: So it’s so funny. Because she has a way bigger following than I do. She’s like, insane in the body building community. But I used to get tagged all the time, being like; she’s like the CrossFit version of DLB, blah, blah, blah. And I guess she had gotten tagged a couple of times saying the same thing, like, “Oh my gosh, you remind me of Miranda from CrossFit.” She wanted to learn how to do CrossFit. So she; actually her husband reached out to me on Instagram and asked if I would come teach her how to do it.

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Miranda: And I was like, this is so awesome! I’ve been told so many times that we look alike. And then we started texted, me and her, about me coming out there where she lived in Pennsylvania to teach her how to do some of the CrossFit movements and to hang out with her. And literally, she’s the raddest person. I stayed at her house that weekend. And I’ve seen her a couple of other times here in LA. And yeah, we became friends. I still talk to her all the time. {laughs}

Juli Bauer: And do you know if she’s doing any sort of CrossFit workouts, or did she just stick with her bodybuilding stuff? Because she competes still, in bodybuilding, right?

Miranda: No, she doesn’t compete anymore. She’s over it. She’s like, I just like to workout. And that’s why she got such a huge following, because she trains different than most bodybuilders do. When I worked out with her, it was bodybuilding movements, but it was like a CrossFit type of workout. They don’t rest. Most bodybuilders, you think of them doing a set and then sipping their water for a couple of minutes. It was pretty high intensity body building. {laughs}

Juli Bauer: Yeah!

Miranda: And she’s super strong. She does a lot of power lifting stuff now. She’s super into power lifting. But every once in a while, I know she still does some CrossFit type movements. But she really has gotten into loving power lifting.

Juli Bauer: Oh, that’s cool. I need to follow her more. I kind of looked at her when you were with her, and I was looking back and forth at her photos. But I haven’t followed her in a long time.

Miranda: Yeah, her and her husband are super cool.

Juli Bauer: Aww, that’s awesome. So another person asked about macros. Did you do macros for a while, or did you do any sort of counting while you were competing or nowadays?

Miranda: I was doing macros, not so much while I was competing. I was just trying to eat all of the food while I was competing. Because we were working out so much. But then after, when I got pregnant, I was doing macros. Just because at that point I wasn’t trying to compete, I just wanted to do them to learn about it, to be honest, and just to try to look good, whatever. So yeah, I was doing macros then. And I kind of do them now, but in reality, I just eat the same thing every single day.

Juli Bauer: What kind of diet do you follow? Do you follow a paleo or Zone or do you try to stay away from certain kinds of food? What kind of food do you like to eat?

Miranda: Well, Juli, I am extremely lucky, because Julian’s company is a meal prep company.

Juli Bauer: Oh, that’s awesome.

Miranda: So before I got pregnant, I was eating some of his food and then some I was still making my own breakfast. I’m not 100% paleo, because I was still working out a lot, and I was pretty lean. And whenever I ate 100% paleo, I didn’t have energy. I had no energy. But I was making your recipes, like once a week at least.

Juli Bauer: I know that was so fun!

Miranda: So it’s just clean. It’s mostly paleo, with the addition of rice and oatmeal sometimes and stuff like that.

Juli Bauer: Ok. So do you try to stay gluten free?

Miranda: I like bread like every other day. Gluten has never bothered me. Dairy bothers me a lot. I can’t do dairy at all. So I’ve tested; in my 10 years of CrossFit I’ve played around with Zone, and paleo, and all that stuff. And just kind of figured out what works best for me. Bread doesn’t bother me too much. Dairy bothers me a lot. If I eat 100% paleo, I feel like I don’t have as much energy. But I eat pretty clean. Yeah. But now, I’m so lucky because literally I eat four of his meals every single day. {laughs}

Juli Bauer: That is awesome. I’m very jealous of that.

Miranda: Yeah. They have a paleo menu that’s paleo, and then they have a macro menu. And usually I eat off the macro menu, so it’s super clean with some rice or potatoes and stuff like that in there.

Juli Bauer: And what is that company called?

Miranda: That company is Fierro’s Kitchen. And it just delivers only in SoCal.

Juli Bauer: Ok. Well anybody who’s in SoCal can definitely look that up. That’s awesome. So we kind of covered pretty much everybody’s questions in all the chats we just had. And I wanted to ask this one question, because I remember seeing this. And I kind of tried to find it on your Instagram, but I think it was super far back. Because you posted this kind of before and after photo, and I think it was before CrossFit. You were heavier than you were in this picture with your, of course, a million abs. And then you talked about how something was different because your boobs were much bigger. So I’m guessing you had implants before?

Miranda: So the history of my boobs.

Juli Bauer: Yes! {laughs} Because I have implants, so I just wanted to kind of talk about that. Because I have to kind of change things in CrossFit because of my implants, so I didn’t know if it had to do anything with that, why you had them taken out. So let’s hear this boob story.

Miranda: So I got a student loan when I was 20 {laughs}.

Juli Bauer: {laughing}

Miranda: And spent that money on massive implants. It was around the same time that I was super into competing and wanted to compete in body building. And I had no boobs. And you actually lose points for that, to be honest. Because you don’t go in at the waist as much, and blah, blah, blah. Whatever. So it was a muscle that I could not work, and I went way over the top. They were way too big for my body. And I only had them for like 3 years, and then I got them removed because I hated them and they were painful.

Juli Bauer: Oh my god! How big were they?

Miranda: They were like; I don’t remember. They were at least Ds.

Juli Bauer: Ok.

Miranda: Yeah. They were as big, if not bigger, than my boobs are now with the breastfeeding.

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Miranda: So then I removed them, but then May of last year I got little ones put back in; because again, I had no boobs. So my boobs have had a long history of surgeries.

Juli Bauer: So how long ago did you get smaller ones in?

Miranda: May; around regionals 2016.

Juli Bauer: OK. And do you have any issues with working out?

Miranda: Not really. And I don’t have any issues with breastfeeding, either. Because I know that’s something that can come up. But I haven’t; they’re really small. I literally told them put them smallest possible ones you can put in there.

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Miranda: Yeah.

Juli Bauer: Well that’s awesome. I’ve talked with another friend who got implants and then she just felt like they weren’t part of her body, so she had them removed. So it’s always interesting to see different people’s experiences with implants. And especially with working out, or breastfeeding. Because you never know what you’re going to get with breastfeeding and implants.

Miranda: Yeah. I got them removed because they were super painful, even to sleep, because I just got; they were way too big.

Juli Bauer: That’s crazy.

Miranda: Yeah.

Juli Bauer: Damn. Well I just had to end on boob story. Who doesn’t like to end on a boob story?

Miranda: We’ve gone through a lot.

Juli Bauer: Seriously! We’ve gone through a lot.

Miranda: You started by asking me what my last name is, and me not knowing the answer to that question.

Juli Bauer: I know! Well last week I talked about colonics, which is like getting a professional enema on the podcast. So, we talk about things coming out of all crevices on this podcast.

Miranda: {laughs}

Juli Bauer: So thank you for being part of that.

Miranda: Oh, good.

Juli Bauer: I really appreciate that. {laughs} Thank you for telling your story. I know people are going to love this; especially someone who is in the fitness community and has worked out throughout their pregnancy and afterwards. And then people can find you; can you tell everybody where they can find you on social media or your website or whatever else? Or Street Parking. Everything.

Miranda: Yeah. So best way is just on Instagram. My Instagram is now Fearless Miranda. And Street Parking is Street_Parking. So that’s it. That’s the best way. And you can find whatever else you’re looking for by going there.

Juli Bauer: Awesome. Well thank you so much for being on, and chatting with us, and telling us all the gory details, so women really know what they’re in for, you know. Don’t sugar coat it.

Miranda: They still don’t know. That’s the thing.

Juli Bauer: That’s true.

Miranda: You can’t explain. Yeah.

Juli Bauer: That’s very true. Well thank you so much, Miranda. You can hold on the line. Thank you everyone for listening. Don’t forget to rate, review, subscribe, and I’ll talk to you next week. Bye-bye for now.

Today on the podcast, I’m talking to CrossFit athlete, coach and previous HQ staff Miranda Chivers. We talk about everything from competing in CrossFit, to her breaking her neck, going through knee surgery and giving birth to her first child…all […] Today on the podcast, I’m talking to CrossFit athlete, coach and previous HQ staff Miranda Chivers. We talk about everything from competing in CrossFit, to her breaking her neck, going through knee surgery and giving birth to her first child…all […] PaleOMG Uncensored yes 1:11:27
Listener Questions – Episode 54: PaleOMG Uncensored Podcast Sat, 14 Oct 2017 13:02:02 +0000 23 I asked on instagram if you guys had any questions and I’m answering all of them here! If I missed anything, feel free to leave a comment on the blog and I’m happy to answer it!! Big thank you to […] I asked on instagram if you guys had any questions and I’m answering all of them here! If I missed anything, feel free to leave a comment on the blog and I’m happy to answer it!! Big thank you to everyone who left a question!!


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Episode 54 Transcription!

This is Juli Bauer from PaleOMG and you are listening to PaleOMG Uncensored.

1. Favorite new podcast [14:48]
2. Listener questions: Beauty [17:05]
3. Listener questions: Food [26:49]
4. Listener questions: Fitness [46:37]
5. Listener questions: Random [1:03:23]

Juli Bauer: Welcome to another episode of PaleOMG Uncensored. Thanks for hanging out today, guys. Thanks for coming in. If you’ve been listening to the podcast lately, you’ve noticed that I’ve been doing more interviews, and I’ve been loving it. You know why? Because I don’t f*cking yawn every 6 seconds, that’s why. But now I’m back to talking to myself today. And probably yawning. So I apologize now. Can’t help it. But I do want to get some feedback from you.

Other than the yawning, ok? Ok? Ok. Do you like the interviews? I’ve been interviewing all kinds of different people, and I have a ton of fun interviews coming up. So I was going to do a handful of interviews, then do an episode by myself, then do a handful of interviews. So do you like the interviews? Do you not like the interviews? Do you wish it was all interviews? Or do you wish it was just me yawning for an hour straight? You tell me. You give me that feedback.

How you can tell me that is if you go to the blog; you can always go to Or you can write me on Instagram, send me a message, leave me a comment. Whatever suits you. Let me know.

But welcome back to; this is going to be my 55th episode? It’s too hard to remember. We’re over a year, guys. We’re over a year. We’ve over a year in, and pushing through.

I just got back from Walla Walla last week. If you’ve never heard of Walla Walla, it’s in Washington. Walla Walla, Washington. The town so nice, they named it twice. Can you even with that cuteness? It really is that cute. It really is that cute. As cute as it sounds, it’s that cute.

So you fly into this little tiny airport. They have one gate. And I went to Seattle first, and then to Walla Walla through Alaska airlines. And I’ve never flown Alaska airlines. They’re adorable. On these shorter flights, they serve you free wine and beer. Sadly, I don’t like either of those that much. But the wine was actually tasty. I just took one for the team, and tried it out. And I can’t complain about it. Especially since it was free. Free wine always tastes better than wine you paid for. Am I right? Am I right?

I tried to; a friend asked if we wanted to go to dinner on a Monday. Go out to this pizza place. And they just had a baby a few weeks ago, so they’re probably like, “Get me the f*ck out of my house.” So we said yes, of course. Even though it’s Monday. Who eats pizza on a Monday? Not me. And then none of us ordered pizza. But that’s besides the point.

I ordered; when they were all ordering wine, I was like, ok sure. I’ll get wine too. Just because then it’s like, they didn’t have to take my wine glass away. And it tasted terrible. You know why? Because we paid for it. That’s why. So yeah, they serve free wine on the Alaska airline flight.

So you fly into this one little gate airport. And it’s super easy to get to the town; it’s just a quick drive over. And I stayed in this apartment style vacation home. They have these vacation rentals right in the middle of downtown. And they’re super cute. They have full kitchens. All five are a little bit different. But mine had a huge living room, a bedroom, this huge bathroom, full kitchen, just super comfortable cool space. And I stayed there for I think the four days I was there.

And I dropped in at a CrossFit gym. Which, CrossFit gyms are so sketchy going to different areas. They’re so hit or miss. You never know what you’re going to get. Because anybody can open a CrossFit gym. So for a CrossFit gym to survive and to be actually good, the people have to truly care about it. So when you’re in a small town, you just don’t know what you’re going to get. It’s going to be a person who is super passionate, or is it going to be a person who just opened a CrossFit gym because there was a need for one. And luckily; this gym has five owners. It was called Destination CrossFit Walla Walla. And it was fantastic. The coaching was awesome. There was so much different stretching and mobility stuff. And everybody was super friendly. And the space was huge. It was like 5000 square feet or something. Gigantic. So it was really rad.

And then I did Pilates. I’ve done Pilates in a couple of different places that I’ve traveled, and I don’t think I like Pilates. I just; I’ve tried it multiple different places, and I always give it a fair chance. And I always love the people that I meet at these fitness studios, and love going to different fitness studios. But I’m just not into Pilates. I’ve tried. It’s just like spinning. I’m not into spinning. I don’t want my vagina pushed into a seat. I was going to say an uncomfortable word, but I didn’t. But I don’t need it rammed into a seat for an hour. Don’t need it.

So I just kind of felt that same way about Pilates. Not the crotch part, but I just don’t have a love for it. But the woman who owned this studio was just so badass. She was just so inspiring. And she was probably highly disappointed by my incredibly tight hips. Sorry ma’am.

And then I went to all kinds of different wineries. I went to four wineries or wine tasting rooms. I should have gone to more, honestly. I don’t’ really like alcohol all that much. I like a good cocktail here or there. But I really like wine tasting, because you can spit it out. So if you don’t like it, you don’t have to choke down a whole glass because you feel bad because someone paid for it, or you bought it, or whatever bullsh*t. It’s like, you get to taste, and you get to spit it out. And if you want to finish it, if you really like it, you can finish it.

And then if you’re like; oh, I don’t like this place. Boom. Let’s move to the next. Because Walla Walla has like 120 different wineries and wine tasting rooms. So there’s a sh*t-ton to choose from. So it’s a blasty blast.

And so we went to a bunch of different places there. And all the restaurants in Walla Walla are awesome. This town is a town of a population of 30,000. So it’s not very big. So to have really high-quality restaurants and chefs there is quite amazing. And all the food was amazing.

There was a strict gluten free bakery. A bunch of the menus had gluten free options on the menu. Bakeries had gluten free choices on their menu as well. So it’s so easy to eat here and not get sick and not feel awful. It was the best. I had so much fun. And it was perfect fall weather. I went to a food truck night. And I went to this one restaurant, it’s called Andre’s Kitchen, and he has a food truck but he also has a restaurant that is inside a gas station. And it’s not like what you’re probably picturing of a gas station that’s been renovated and it’s all cool and hip now. No, it’s just a f*cking gas station.

So picture a gas station, and the Arby’s that you get inside a gas station. Like Subway. That is the set up. This this guy Andre has some of the best f*cking food. That place, in the gas station, was my favorite place. And I went to a super nice restaurant, and nice places in town with fancy menus. And this guy’s restaurant inside a gas station was by far my favorite. I tried to go back there the next day, but I just didn’t have time before my flight. Because I was walking everywhere, and it was a 15-minute walk from my little apartment downtown instead of a 2-minute walk like other restaurants. So I just didn’t have time.

But this guy; he makes food inspired by all over the place. So he has hot dogs to an amazing burger to barbecue. He does the best brisket I’ve ever had. And I wanted in line for 5 hours in Austin for brisket, and this brisket was hands down 10 million times better. I’m serious. It was so good. Everything is homemade. All the aioli, the slaw. Everything is just bomb. Oh my god, I loved it so much. And I wanted to go back because I heard he had really good breakfast. And he has these voodoo-Cajun fries. Oh my god I loved this place so much. I would literally go back to Walla Walla just for this gas station restaurant alone. It was so bomb.

And then I walked around the Whitman college campus, and it really made me miss being in college. Because college is the best. It’s the worst because you’re broke as f*ck, but it’s the best because you just have no worries in the world. And your whole life isn’t crumbling down because you’re like; oh where’s my money? I don’t know. Whatever. You’re in college, life is great.

So anyway. It’s just a beautiful town. And it’s been so fun. I’ve been working with different visitor bureaus and that’s what I did. I worked with Visit Walla Walla while I was out there to promote the town and promote whatever things I’m interested in. And it’s so cool to find out about all these little places in the US. Because I feel like we always want to travel outside of the US, because I’m part of that group. I want to travel internationally as much as possible. But it’s so cool to see all these little places within the US that are such cool towns to go to and to promote and want to go back to time and time again. And that’s how I felt about Santa Ynez Valley, and I feel the same way about this little adorable town now of Walla Walla. It was just so cute.

So while I was in Walla Walla, we just had put in a ring doorbell. So if you haven’t seen these, they have commercials for them, and they’re all over the place now. But they are doorbells that have a camera on them, so you can set the motion for however far of a distance. So if anybody walks by, if a car drives by, if somebody drops off a package, if someone steals a package, if the mailman comes, someone rings your doorbell is at your door. You can see it, and then you can respond to the doorbell ring. Or you can just respond to someone who is trying to steal your package and be like, “What the f*ck motherf*cker!” You know. Something just very subtle.

And when we put the ring doorbell in, it was like the day before I left. And I set the sensor too far, so every single time a car would drive past our street, on our street, I would get a little notification to my phone. So while I was in Walla Walla, I kept checking these notifications, and I’m sure it’s killing my phone battery. But that’s why I have a Mophie charger.

So I am obsessed with this ring doorbell. Now I can see when a package has been dropped off. Say if I needed my neighbor or something to pick it up, if my husband wasn’t going to be home for the day. And you can just see what’s going on. So if my weird ass neighbor who is selling drugs is walking through the yard, I can see it. I see everything. Oh my god, it is the best. Highly recommend it. You know what’s going on. It’s awesome. Do it. Just do it. Just get it.

Ok. So, today we’re going to go through some listener questions. Because I think these episodes are so much fun. And you can tell me if you don’t like them. But I always get a lot of questions on Instagram. And Instagram is such a poophole now, that I don’t know who is seeing any of my content anymore. And Instagram really regulates who sees it. Then I feel like nobody is seeing my stuff, and nobody likes it, and then I’m like, why am I even doing this anymore. I get on those.

So this is really fun because I always get a lot of questions. And I’m like, ok. People are still involved and want to hear and chat back and forth. And I just live in this world at my house. And so when I’m not seeing feedback on Instagram, I feel like nobody’s seeing anything or wanting to see anything. So thank you for anybody who left a question.

And if you don’t have your question answered on here, it’s probably because I’ve done a handful. I’ve probably done five or six of these episodes, and I’ve answered this question before. Your question before. So I’ve probably talked about that topic. I got a bunch of questions about how I come up with content on my website; I have a podcast about that. Or how I work with brands; I have a podcast about becoming a fulltime blogger. So I have all kinds of different topics already in the queue. I don’t know what that means. Or in listener questions.

So definitely go back to listen to those. You can find cool different content and listener questions as well. So I hope that helps, if I didn’t answer something, and you’re like, “Why is Juli such a raging b*tch? I hate her.” Well, it’s because I am, so that’s it.

1. Favorite new podcast [14:48]

Oh my god; wait, before I get started with these listener questions. I need to talk about something I’m obsessed with right now. Like, OBSESSED. And if you follow me on Instagram, you’ve probably seen me talk about it there. Or on my blog. I am officially obsessed with a new podcast. It is called Wine and Crime. I feel like I haven’t listened to any of my normal podcasts lately. I have Reality Steve. I have My Favorite Murder. I have How I Built This with Guy Raz. I have all those podcasts coming in, subscribed, and they’ve had all these new episodes in the past 2 weeks, and I haven’t listened to any of them because I’ve been listening to Wine and Crime. I think they probably have 35-40 episodes. I’m at like 25 or something, and I don’t want to be caught up.

So these three women just badass feminists, hilarious women. They talk about crimes. And they do a wine pairing with their crime. And then they just get drunk and talk about these different topics. There are some tough topics to get through. I’m actually listening to cannibalism, and I had to take a break because it’s like, cannibalism of children, and I just f*cking can’t. I don’t like children, but I don’t want them eaten by other humans. You know?

So they get drunk and they talk about these subjects. Their first subject was necrophilia, so if maybe that’s not your cup of tea, maybe don’t start at that episode. But all their episodes are so funny. And they’re just; for women. Not women, but people in general to be that funny, you have to be incredibly intelligent. So you can just tell that these women are so intelligent. They’re so badass. And just f*cking funny! Ugh. I love them. Listen to them, Wine and Crime. They get drunk on wine.

I just told my husband; I’m like, I don’t even drink or like wine, and I want to be on their podcast. And I’ll get drunk just to talk with them. But they’re so cool. So listen to them. Obsessed with them. And don’t we love new podcasts? Listening to new podcasts is the best.

2. Listener questions: Beauty [17:05]

Ok. Back to square one. Let’s go over some listener questions! Ok, I have kind of different topics. So I’m going to start with beauty. Because I had a handful of questions about beauty; like skin. All those kinds of different things. I always go back and forth if I should say people’s names, but I’m going to because your post was out there. So obviously you’ll see it.

So, ok. Just so you know, I just got a notification on my phone that someone’s at my doorstep. I can look. I know exactly what’s going on. No big deal.

Ok, so this one is MC, I don’t know. Gunter. “How did you find your esthetician? Did you just Google ones in the area, or did she come recommended?” So how I found my esthetician. I get this question a lot, because it’s like; if you don’t know where to look, it’s very hard to believe anything. Especially with Yelp reviews nowadays. Like, oh man. I just had the worst experience with eyelash, not extensions, but an eyelash lift. And I went to this place because it had great Yelp reviews, and then I had the worst f*cking experience. And I left a bad Yelp review, and I never do that. Literally ever. And I sandwiched it with other compliments, because they were really good with dyeing. But the point is, you can’t trust Yelp reviews, because sometimes are paid for those. Whatever.

So I looked to a friend who had the most beautiful skin, and I’m like, “Who do you see? Do you see an esthetician, because your skin is just glowing all the time?” And I asked her, and she recommended my esthetician, Sean. And so I’ve been seeing Sean for, it has to be two years now. And she opened her own practice about a year ago. I was seeing her when she was at a different office. And I consider her a friend now. She is such an amazing person. She just does such a good job.

So I recommend word of mouth. I think word of mouth is so huge in whatever we do; whether it’s real estate or gyms or wherever. Get some recommendations from others. So ask some of your friends, or maybe people you know on Facebook. Get recommendations from them, because word of mouth is the best way to go, I’ve found. It’s the best.

Ok. Jen asks, “If you had to pick just one skincare treatment, what was the most bang for your buck?” So if I had to pick just one, it would be for sure ProFractional. And I am about to do some video stuff in the next month. I really want to go get ProFractional done, but I’m trying to wait until after the video is done, because your face looks like a monster for a couple of days. But it’s pretty expensive. I don’t know what it is at other places, but I’ve seen it range from $350 to $1000. It has really ranged in most places. I think my esthetician, she’s running a special right now for half off. Running it through October, and that’s half off I think is like $450. So it’s obviously a very expensive treatment.

But it’s complete resurfacing of your skin and giving you full new skin. So if you’re going the intense ProFractional; there’s kind of, not wimpier, just not quite as intense. The intense ones; you’re getting the most bang for your buck. Because you’re resurfacing your entire face. You’re rebuilding new collagen. It’s going to work on some dark spots. It’s going to work on your acne scars. On your fine lines. You’re getting it all. And it is painful, it is expensive, and you look like a f*cking sh*t storm afterwards, but it is so worth it. And I highly recommend it to everyone I meet. I really need this video stuff to end so I can go get it done again. But it is awesome, ProFractional. Highly recommend.

This one is from Lisa, and she said, “What do you use for your daily SPF on your face?” I use a ton of different products from them; Vivant. And I’ve talked about Vivant. I have their SPF, it’s like a zinc one but it doesn’t make your skin look white. That’s the main SPF I use if I’m not using a tinted moisturizer, which as SPF in it. And I really love Super Goop. They have a little brush; it looks like what you would brush your face with. And it has SPF inside of it; like SPF 30 I think. And so then if you have makeup on, and your SPF kind of runs out throughout the day, you can just use this powder on your face. That’s Super Goop. Vivant and Super Goop. And then I love the skin care Revision for tinted moisturizer. Revision Skin Care.

Ok. This one is a luxurious mind. Oh, that is so sexy. She asks, “You mentioned once that you’re a natural blonde. Why do you prefer to be brunette?” And she said, “Which is a good choice; you look fantastic!” Oh, stop, I love you, a luxurious mind!

So I went blonde when I was like, probably 14 or 15. And never turned back. And I think it just works better with my skin tone. I like how I look when I’m ultra f*cking tan when I’m blonde. But I’m not a teenager anymore who wants skin cancer. When I look in the mirror, I don’t see myself as blonde. So it’s kind of like, you look at yourself and you’re like, I don’t recognize myself. We’ve all gone through those different situations. Jackson needs to be let out. Whether it’s weight or who knows. Sexuality, even. And I didn’t recognize myself. It didn’t look like me with blonde hair, and I didn’t like it. So when I went brunette, I could never go back.

And I tried once to go back blonde, and it just didn’t work for my skin tone. I feel like my eyes pop more because I have dark hair. So I just keep with the dark. Dyeing my hair every three goddamn weeks, you know. So that’s why.

Ok. “What have you done that has been the most successful treatment for your acne scars?” The ProFractional for sure. But I am still getting more and more acne scars on my cheeks as I’m just getting older. Getting into my 30s now, just creeping along to that 30 mark, and these acne scars are really f*cking pissing me off.

But I just bought; I didn’t buy it. My esthetician let me borrow it. Her Dermapen. So it’s kind of like a microneedle; I just talked about it on my blog recently. But it’s like a round little pen, and you hold it to your face, and it digs the needles into your face to rebuild that collagen. So I’m going to start using that more often. I just, you know, it’s hard when you don’t want a bloody face or just little scabs from using the pen. But ProFractional for sure I think has been the most helpful. Which is why I’m doing it again soon.

And this was the last one in beauty, I think. This is from Healthy Living Warrior. She asks, “Can you talk about what it’s like to get dermaplane and how the hair grows back and how often you do it? What happens if you stop?” So, Dermaplane. I’ve talked about this on my blog. Dermaplane is like a really sharp knife they use, kind of like a scalpel. And they shave your face. It’s just like how they would do at a barber shop, how they would shave your face. They shave your face, but it takes the first couple of layers off of your skin, so like the dead skin. And then it takes all the hair off as well. So you just have this baby smooth face.

If you see all the dead skin that comes off, it’s so f*cking gross. But the hair grows back exactly the same, nothing changes. It’s not like you get extra thick hair, like that midwife tale or whatever where your hair grows back thick and black. That’s not how it grows. It grows back just the way it was. I think you just kind of notice it more because then you see what your face looks like without these little baby hairs. And I notice it more on people now since I started doing it.

But I use these little; I get dermaplaned every 4 weeks that I go see my esthetician. She does dermaplane to me. And then I have these little face razors, they’re called Twinkle. Or maybe; no, they’re called Tinkle. Because I was like, that’s a stupid name. I just use them at home. And they’re not near as good dermaplane in an actual office. But you can just get those little light hairs that start to grow back if you don’t like that look. It’s awesome.

Nothing happens if you stop. Your hair grows back like it did before. I think that was a pretty common question with dermaplaning stuff.

3. Listener questions: Food [26:49]

Ok, let’s get into food! Because it’s my favorite! Ok, this question is by a person who just has letters jumbled together. It’s like flalablahblahblahblah. I think they just typed on there; you know when you slam your hand down on your keyboard and it just puts all these random letters together? That’s what their name is. This girl is probably going to be like, you’re such a b*tch. “Siete chips; sea salt, lime, or nacho? I know you’ve discussed.” Oh, this is a separate question. “I know you’ve discussed part of your weight history, CrossFit, losing mass, etc. How did you find your ideal weight? Not necessarily a number, but a feel, look, and performance?”

Ok. Two totally separate questions. Siete chips; I am a lime lover. I’m not a huge nacho chip person. But I am a lime and sea salt one. I love the lime. Just obsessed with the lime.

And then for your second part of the question. So, finding my ideal weight. I’ve weighed myself here or there once in a while. And my ideal weight is different than what my body wants to be at, if that makes sense. So, my weight that I feel most confident in my clothes and with my physique is when I’m at 130 pounds, and what my body likes to stay at is 135. Because I like to eat more, and not restrict myself. So I think my ideal is 135 for me.

And that’s when I can lift decent amount of weight that I can still hold myself in the gym. But not so much about the weight but my form is really good. So I can get decent weight, but keeping perfect form. And that’s all I care about. As soon as I lose my form, I don’t do that weight anymore. So I like being able to fell best in my clothes and my jeans, how my leggings are fitting around my hips. That’s usually where I gain weight. And that I can keep form, and I can keep up my performance.

Meaning, even if I’m not going RX weights, I can finish the workout when maybe most people are having a hard time finishing the workout. Or I can stay kind of close to some of the best people at the gym. And they’re going RX weights, but I just don’t worry about that for me. But I’m saying, ok, if they finished at this time, I’m going to try to finish at this time.

So, that’s kind of my ideal weight. My clothes fitting that I feel most comfortable and that I’m still able to do decent heavy weight while still going fast. And I mean it’s not strong weight by any means, but it’s comfortable weights for me in different lifts. And that seems to be about 135. Whenever I’m like, ok I’ll just weigh myself. If I weigh that, it’s usually around 135, and that’s what my body likes to stay at. So hopefully that answers your question.

This one is Ricky Podgakala. God that sounded offensive. “Do you have some tips on how to get more of a lean body and how to avoid stomach bloating?” So I guess I kind of jumbled some of these food and body questions together.

So to get a lean body and to avoid stomach bloating, it is all about your diet. If you want to get a lean body, you have to have a clean diet. You have to stay away from sugar and alcohol. And obviously be working out on a regular basis as well.

But stomach bloating is being caused by something that your body doesn’t like or doesn’t want to digest, or doesn’t work well. Whenever I feel bloated, I can now, at this point, dig down to figure out why I’m feeling bloated. Ok, well it’s because you made dessert yesterday, and you had way more dessert than you usually do. Or you were eating the batter. Or you had nuts. Or you had eggs. I can start figuring out what is making me bloated, and it’s down to that specific food that my body does not like and it does not digest well.

So lean body and stomach bloating; it is all about the diet and dialing in that diet that works for you. So it’s a lot of trial and error. That’s it. That’s it.

This is from Sand1841. “What proteins do you eat? I have such a hard time getting them in. I hate fish, like shellfish.” Well shoot. I eat proteins in all kinds of different ways. Chicken, beef, pork, salmon, white fish, shellfish. I mean I do not have any sort of hard time getting protein. I don’t know if you think maybe I’m a vegetarian, or if you’re a vegetarian, but I have no trouble getting protein in. It is very easy for me, and I have protein with every single meal. So that’s how I do. Easy as that.

Ok, this one is from Lindsey Shent. She asks, “What foods do you choose to avoid? Any types of meat, beans? I know you don’t eat much fruit? What are your thoughts on keto? It seems like you are more balanced as opposed to all or nothing thinking that goes with keto.”

Ok, so foods that I avoid. I obviously avoid gluten. I’ve talked about that a ton. I pretty much stay away from that completely. And I avoid beans. I find that beans lead to bloating for me, so I don’t really do beans. I avoid fruit. I don’t eat that much fruit, because my stomach doesn’t really do that well with it. I find when I eat fruit, I don’t feel satisfied and I feel a little bit bloated. But when I eat vegetables, I feel satisfied and I don’t have any sort of bloat. So it probably has to do with the sugar content.

And I know everybody believes different things with fruit; I just personally don’t feel like I need fruit in my diet. And if I’m going to have sugar, it’s going to be in a piece of chocolate. I would much rather get my vitamins and minerals that I would from fruit from vegetables instead. So that’s one thing I stay away from. I stay away from eggplant, because I think it’s f*cking gross. I’ve got to close the door. And I try to stay away from too much alcohol, obviously while still enjoying nights out with friends. But I just try not to overdo it. And I see how much people do drink, because I live in a city and with people at my gym who all drink on a regular basis. So I think I drink very much less than most people. But those are the main things I stay away from.

And then keto; I think; who Jackson, don’t fall off the couch. I think keto can be incredibly helpful for people. I think it’s very hard to stay in ketosis, from what I have read. I haven’t done it myself. And I kind of screwed up my hormones from eating a little bit too much fat when my body needed more carbohydrates from doing CrossFit and high intensity workouts. So I don’t do keto myself. I like carbs and I like having carbs on a regular basis. And you hear a lot; I wonder if you can hear Jackson slurping this bone. Oh, I’m sorry I’m talking about you.

I hear about people losing all this weight on keto, but then they easily gain it back. So I don’t think it’s a long term, stable diet. You know? I feel like it’s this go in, lose a bunch of weight, and then go back to your normal routine, gain the weight, and just continue this process. And for me, paleo became not just a diet, it became a lifestyle that I can hold long-term. And I don’t feel like you can always do that with keto. So that’s my kind of answer on keto.

This is from Kay Scott. “What do you do when you feel like you have been on a sugar overload? I just got back from vacay where my sweet tooth went a little cray-cray.” And I feel the same way every time I get back from vacation. Whether I drink or I had more desserts than I usually would. And when I feel like I’m on sugar overloaded, I just stop eating sugar. That it. And I’ve gotten much better over the years where; you know, I got back last Wednesday from this trip, and the first sugar that I had was a pumpkin dessert a week and a half later. So I have to just hold myself and not have dessert for a little bit. Not have any sugar or any sweets. And then I can add it back in when I know I can actually control myself, and I’m actually craving it, it’s not just my brain being addicted like cocaine. So, that’s what I do. I just f*cking cut the cord. Cut the cord, brah.

Ok, this one is VTD nutrition. “How many sweet do you eat in a week? I’m trying to get better at moderation, but for my personality type, if I have something sweet one day I end up allowing a sweet every single day for a month at a time. So how often do you eat a treat during an average week?”

Well, that depended if I’m on my period or not. I’m on my period right now; TMI. And I just had four pieces of chocolate. Usually I wouldn’t do that. And honestly, I wish I had like a complete code for this, or like a layout. I just don’t live by that. Sometimes, I have a sweet every single day. Like I’ll have a piece of chocolate or two pieces of chocolate every single day. Sometimes I’ll go a week or more without having any sort of sweet. So I know I feel and I look my best when I don’t have sugar on a regular basis, but I like having sugar, as well, so there is some kind of give and take.

I wish I had a complete exact science for you. But sometimes I have sugar every single day, sometimes I don’t. But, telling myself that I can have sugar whenever I want it makes me want it less. As soon as I say I can’t have something, I want it constantly, and that’s when I’ll find myself eating it every single day. So, you have to totally work with your personality type, for sure. But I just sometimes have it every day, sometimes not at all. That’s how it is. It just depends on the day. And the time of the month.

Heather. “I work in sales and live out of my car during the day for work. Any good suggestions other than a salad to pack for lunches that don’t require a microwave?” You’re talking to the wrong person, Heather, because I will eat f*cking anything cold. I don’t give a sh*t. I don’t care about the texture. It’s the same food that I cooked up the day before. So I’ll eat chicken and broccoli and avocado completely cold. I’ll eat casseroles completely cold. So I think any food is good cold. I think steak is delicious cut up nice and cold.

So I think it just depends on you. If you’re like, texture and heat is a big deal for you, it’s going to be a little bit more challenging. But you can always make like chicken salads, you know tuna salad. So those can be cold. But maybe just stop caring about how it was like perfectly made the night before, and have some taco casserole cold because it’s still f*cking delicious. That’s what I say.

This one is from Vickie Lee. “I’m considering using Butcher Box next month. How many meals would you say that you get out of each box? I’m tired of meat that is from unknown places with unknown feeds.” Girl! For real. Butcher Box is the best. So it totally depends. I know they have different sizes with Butcher Box, and it depends how much you eat, and if you have a spouse or if you’re feeding other people. Usually in each box you’re going to gets I think 12 to 14 pounds. So you can kind of do the math for that.

For me, I usually, once it’s cooked out, I’ll eat half a pound; or like a third a pound of meat. I would say I eat like a third of a pound. Like when I cook ground beef, I’ll eat a third of that. And so then you can kind of do the math of how many meals you would get out of that after that meat is cooked down.

So I think it totally depends on the person. And you’re going to get; I mean, you’re going to get a lot of meals out of it. You could get up to like 20 different meals, depending on how much you eat, and your size, and how many other people you’re cooking for. So it kind of depends. But, I highly recommend Butcher Box.

And that’s kind of a perfect segue, because Butcher Box is our sponsor this month, and I talked about them on the last two episodes. Two episodes ago I talked with Mike, who is the owner of Butcher Box, and I have been using Butcher Box for probably nine months now, and have absolute loved it. And they’re this months’ sponsor, which is so f*cking cool, because I love them and promote them so much because it’s something I use every single day. I use their meat every single day. So instead of going to the grocery store and not knowing we’re your meat is sourced from, Butcher Box takes all that guesswork out of it. They bring you high quality grass-fed and pastured raised meat straight to your doorstep. It’s frozen right there ready to go. You can just put it in your freezer, and whenever you need to cook something you can take it out.

And they source that best quality beef, chicken, and pork. It’s humanely raised and it’s free of antibiotics and hormones. And Mike talks about that. And it’s so important to understand where our meat is coming from, because whenever meat you are eating, you are eating what they ate. So if you’re eating beef that was fed corn and whatever other bullsh*t they put in there, you are getting that same quality meat into your digestive tract. So remember that. You are what you eat. And it’s so important to humanely raise and to source from high quality farms and people who are making a difference in our community and those farms are making such a huge difference.

So if you haven’t heard about Butcher Box, here’s just a quick rundown about them. Once you sign on, you select your box, you customize it to your liking, and then you set your schedule of how often you want to receive your Butcher Box. So you get to pick that. And they offer free shipping to the contiguous 48 states. And each classic box is filled with 8 to 11 pounds; I get a little bit more in mine. And they just launched their custom box. So you can choose; before they didn’t have this. But now you can choose exactly what goes in your box. So if you want, like only filet mignon, or you want only steak tips. Or you want their breakfast sausage and ground beef and a certain steak. You can pick that now, which is really cool. Because they didn’t offer that before.

And so for PaleOMG Uncensored listeners, you are going to get $10 off your first order, plus two free grass-fed grass finished ribeyes. How rad is that? Ribeye steaks are really f*cking good. So all you have to do is go to and figure out the perfect box for you. Again, that’s And you’ll get $10 off your first order, plus those 2 free ribeyes. I’ve loved Butcher Box since I’ve started using them, and I would not tell you guys about them if I didn’t use them every single day. You’ll see them in more and more my recipes online. So I highly recommend them. Check them out for sure. And you can see what you think of them.

Okay, let’s move on to that next question. “How do you feel about cheats and alcohol? Non-paleo cheats included, if they exist.”

Ok, so I stay away from gluten. I just don’t think it’s something we need in our diet, and it doesn’t do well for me, and so I just don’t think I need it. And I try to stay away from alcohol. How do I feel about cheats; “cheats.” I think you choose to eat what you choose to eat. If you are feeling guilty about something you’re eating, then it’s either you need to change your mindset, or maybe you shouldn’t be eating that. So that how I feel about it.

I eat sugar whenever I want to. I don’t drink that much alcohol because I think it’s a waste. I’d much rather eat than drink, but I like spending time with my friends and going out for a cocktail once in a while. But I like to eat my food instead of drink my calories. That’s just how I feel. But yeah; I think life is part eating and drinking and having fun with your friends. And so you have to find what works for you, what is the best balance for you, and what works with your lifestyle. So you have to figure out what’s the best. Everybody is totally different.

And this one is Alison. “Do you feel satisfied more on carbs or more fat? Also, what’s your favorite night time snack?” So I feel more satisfied nowadays; I think with a balance of fat and carbs. You know, I like having carbs. I can tell when I’m having too many, if I’m getting overly full, I know I don’t need to be eating that many carbohydrates. And so I kind of back off. But I get plenty of fat in the ghee that I cook my vegetables in, or the fat that’s already in the proteins that I’m eating. So I don’t really add a ton of extra fat. Like I don’t get guacamole like I used to when I go to Chipotle, or get avocado on my burgers. Because I know I’m getting plenty of fat from other things.

I don’t really have a favorite nighttime snack. I try not to eat too much at night. And if I’m getting hungry, it means I didn’t have a big enough dinner. Because for us, we usually don’t eat dinner until about 7. And I try to go to bed by 10. So I don’t really need a snack for my metabolism. I don’t need a snack in that 3-hour timespan. So I don’t usually feel hungry by the time I go to bed. And if I do, it’s because I didn’t eat enough at dinner. So, I don’t really have a favorite nighttime snack. If it’s anything right now while I’m on my period, it’s a piece of Hu chocolate; H-U. It’s f*cking good. They have like Nutella. A chocolate hazelnut butter filled chocolate. It’s f*cking dope. Who says dope? That’s stupid.

4. Listener questions: Fitness [46:37]

Ok, let’s talk about some fitness questions. So I get this question a lot with Orange Theory stuff. So this is a couple of people’s questions kind of rolled into one. So, this is from Liz. She said, “How do you get your Orange Theory splat points and calories so high? I try so hard and have barely ever gotten 12 splat points or passed 500 calories. I’ve been in the red zone once. What the f*ck?! My base is 7 miles per hour, push is 8.5 to 9, and my all-out is 9 to 10, depending on the day. I know my heart rate is low because fitness, but yours must be low as well. It’s so depressing seeing everyone in class in the orange, and I’m crushing along at the green 73%.” And she says, “I’m 5’5” and 130 pounds.”

So, I get this question a lot. And for people who don’t know what Orange Theory is, I have a podcast about Orange Theory. Splat points are the time that your heart rate is in the orange or red zones. So kind of an elevated heart rate, where your heart is pump, it’s feeling uncomfortable. And the splat points are like the amount of time you’re there. So I usually get about 30 splat points; 30 to 40 splat points. And then most classes I burn 600-700 calories.

This is what sucks about Orange Theory versus CrossFit. Orange Theory; first of all, you have mirrors. I don’t need to see myself f*cking working out. Like, when people are like, I need a mirror to check my form. No, you need your brain to check your form. Like you don’t need a mirror. You can physically feel your body and where it should be if you listen to it. And I see plenty of people watching in the mirror, doing their form wrong. So, no, you don’t need a f*cking mirror. And, now since Orange Theory, they use heart rate monitors and give you a breakdown. I think people get very obsessive about it, and it can ruin their workout.

And what I love about CrossFit; you have no mirrors, you have no numbers other than what you got for your workout that day, what your score was, what your time was. But it’s not this number of how many calories you finished with. And I think that can be incredibly draining with Orange Theory if that’s something you worry about. Because then you’re like, “Why are these people burning more than me?”

But here’s the thing. Who f*cking cares? Who cares? You have probably a low resting heart rate. It could be that your monitor is off. If you have this question, ask your coach and talk to them. Because your Orange Theory coach knows way more than I do about your heart rate monitor. They’ve had training in this, and they can help you and give you advice. So talk to your trainer; they know best.

but it could be a number of different things. It could be, maybe you’re an endurance athlete, and you have a low resting heart rate, and your body stays at that rate more comfortably for a longer amount of time. That’s not a bad thing. Having a low resting heart rate is not a bad thing. So don’t stress out about it that much.

And for me, I can get to an elevated heart rate, and I feel like I can stay there for a long amount of time, and when I see my heart rate going back down, I usually try to get it back up in some ways. And I think a lot of people have trouble with that on the floor. And that’s because they don’t lift very much. Because Orange Theory has mostly lighter dumbbells at their stations. So they had maybe up to 25, and then they have some heavier dumbbells tucked in the corner, but not directly at the station. And so when we’re doing deadlifts, most women are just grabbing the 55’s, because maybe that’s just what they’ve done and what their comfortable with. And I go over and I’m using two 35-pound dumbbells, because I know when I’m lifting, when I’m doing deadlifts at CrossFit, I’m doing 125 pounds or more. So here with dumbbells I’m doing 70 pounds. Which is easy; it’s hard because there are two dumbbells, so it feels different. But my heart rate is getting much more elevated, because my muscles are having to work much harder than at those lower weights.

And I’m putting people down for using weights. You can use whatever weights work for you. I don’t give a f*ck. I’m just saying that’s how I get my heart rate elevated, and that’s how people, why lifting is so effective. Because it is upping your heart rate, it is upping your metabolism. You’re burning more calories because you’re lifting more. So I’m able to keep my heart rate pretty elevated while I’m on the floor, because I’m lifting heavier and I’m pushing my weight heavier than maybe what is recommended for like the snatches or the deadlifts or the squats. I go heavier in those, because I know I physically can because of all the CrossFit that I’ve done for the past 7 years.

So stop worrying about it. If it really does bug you, talk to your Orange Theory coach, because they will give you the best advice, not me. But don’t worry about those numbers. If you are feeling good in your skin and you’re feeling like you’re getting a good workout still, then what’s it the matter what it says on a screen? It’s just the same thing with a scale. What’s it matter what it says on a scale if you are content with how you feel? Like, who gives a f*ck about the number? Ugh, I hate numbers. So I hope that helps, because I know I had a couple questions about that.
This next one. Retapia. If I said that right. “How do you decide which shoes to wear to your workouts? Do you do CrossFit in your ultraboost, or do you feel like they’re too squishy for heavy lifts?”

So I wear my ultraboost Adidas shoes to all my Orange Theory classes. I love those shoes for Orange Theory. Like for treadmill workouts, because they’re so squishy, so soft. They’re so comfortable and my feet don’t hurt on the treadmill. And I’ll sometimes wear them; I don’t like wearing the ultraboost when I’m deadlifting or when I’m squatting. So I like it for jerks; for split jerks. I feel really comfortable in the ultraboost. Because they’re kind of wide. I don’t know, I feel like I sit into the ground a little bit more. But I usually, for CrossFit, I just find whatever flat shoes I have. Whether that’s my Nike metcons or Nike running shoes that are really, like the Nike frees that are really flat. That’s what I like for kind of normal CrossFit workouts, where you have overhead squats and that sort of stuff. But I love the ultraboost. They’re like the most comfortable shoes in the entire world.

Ok. Let’s see. This one is Weegi51. “Any tips for a flatter stomach besides dieting? I’m in good shape” and I guess I kind of covered this. “I’m in good shape, and I workout three days a week doing yoga and weightlifting. And I also do situps. I just have a layer of fat on my stomach that I can’t get rid of.”

Ok. Let’s talk about this. So first of all, you can do all the situps in the world, and it does not matter if you do not have a clean diet. Abs are made in the kitchen. And that’s like the worst annoying thing that we hear f*cking over and over and you’re like, shut up! But it’s so true! If you want a flatter stomach, if you want a leaner body, you have to have a clean diet. You have to not being eating sugar on a regular basis, you have to stay away from alcohol, you have to drink plenty of water. That’s very important. And it sounds like you’re working out, so that’s not an issue. So cleaning up the diet.

But, you know what is even more important? Cortisol. So cortisol is a stress hormone. And if you are not sleeping enough, or you are stressing out. Maybe you’re stressing out about belly fat or not getting to a certain weight. Or you have stressors in your life, whether it’s your relationship or maybe something else going on. When you have these stressors in your life, this messes up your cortisol and this leads to weight gain. And often we see this weight gain in the stomach. If it’s not from dieting; if the diet is clean, it can be from the stress or lack of sleep. Sleep is so f*cking important, and I don’t think people understand how important it is. So, think about those other two things in your life. If you’re getting enough sleep. If you’re stressed out about things. If you’re stressing out about your weight.

As soon as I stopped f*cking stressing out about my weight, I lost weight. I just stopped thinking about it. And so many people worry about their weight, and that leads to stress hormone and it leads to weight gain. So keep that in mind.

Ok, this one is XOXOBHarris. “Do you do any sort of mobility work? Your form is always phenomenal and I’m always looking for new tips and tricks.” Girlfriend, I don’t do sh*t. And I wish I didn’t have to admit that. But I literally do nothing. I’m terrible at even rolling out. I don’t do sh*t. I was seeing a guy for acupuncture, and he was doing some dry needling, and crazy massage stretching stuff. But I don’t do sh*t, because who has time?

I’m thinking about getting Amazon Fresh so I can have my groceries delivered, just to cut out an extra 30-45 minutes in my day that I can get more work done. I just don’t have time to sit after class and do my mobility work. And I get it; I could do it while I’m sitting on the couch, but right now I’m sitting on the couch working on my computer, talking to you. I just don’t have time. And I could make time, for sure. We can always make time for anything we want to do; I just don’t. But I need to get on it. But I don’t do any sort of a mobility stuff.

My form was at its, I think, not worst, but I just didn’t have great form when I was competing. Because I was going heavier than I needed to, but also all the stress on all my joints and muscles and tightness, and I just wasn’t doing any of my mobility stuff then. And now that I don’t go very heavy, my body is like, oh! I can get into this position much easier than I used to. So yeah, I don’t do sh*t. I’m too lazy. I’m sorry.

Ok. Let’s see. “I do a CrossFit workout 6 days a week. What are your thoughts on rest days? I know they are important, but I still work out 6 days in a row; Saturday’s being my rest day. Should I rest more?”

Um, girlfriend. I have no idea who you are and what kind of workouts you’re doing, so I cannot tell you if you should rest more or not. I take two rest days a week. I take rest days on Wednesdays and Sundays. And I’ve figured out that rhythm works for me the best. And I think rest days are so f*cking important. And people; we’re taught more and more and more is better. And at some point, it’s not better {laughs}.

Rest days, your body gets to recuperate. It gets to rebuild. It gets to just take time off, and it’s so important. So for me, two days of rest a week is best for me. For some people, it’s one day. You have to find what works for you. Honestly, I don’t know what you’re looking for. I don’t know what your goals are. I don’t know what your weight is. I don’t know what kind of workouts you’re doing. I can’t tell you. I would talk to a coach who knows you. But it’s finding out what’s best for your body and what it needs.

Ok. This one is OkieMomLife. “How do I know if CrossFit would be a good fit for me? I’m very intimidated to go in. It seems cliquey, and I’m scared I won’t be accepted or be good at it. Any pointers for someone who’s interested?”

OK. Girlfriend. No one is good at CrossFit when they first come in. There are some people who are better at movements than others, or maybe someone who’s had an athletic background. But that is not the vast majority of people. Most people come in, just normal, want to get a better workout in; that’s it. So you do not need to worry that you won’t be any good at it, because every single person feels like that. And every single person can improve, whether you’re improving from the beginning, or you are an athlete who has been there for years. You still have improvements. I still see high level athletes still have places that they could improve.

So don’t be scared of not being good at it. Because really no one is when they start. When you’re starting a new skill, learning a new skill, you’re not going to be good at it right away. I’m taking a photography class right now because I don’t know my camera and I want to learn. But I didn’t say I’m not going to go to this class because I don’t know anything about it. I’m going to this class because of that. I want to get better at something. You want to get better at a certain skill; maybe that’s your own fitness. CrossFit is going to get you there. You can’t be scared by something you’re not good at, if you’ve never done it, because of course you’re not going to be good at it! Are any of us good at something we’ve never done? Probably not. So remember that.

CrossFit can feel very cliquey; and even when you go to some gyms, it might be very cliquey. But every single gym is so incredibly different, and so the only way you’re going to know if you like it or not is going in and testing it out and seeing what the people are like and seeing what the community is like. That’s the only way you’re going to know. So go try out a class. But don’t be intimidated, because you feel like you are just this beginner. Because everybody in that gym has probably been there at some point, ok? You are not alone, and you might even be starting at the same time that other people are starting. So you’ll get to know people. So don’t be scared. The only way you’re going to know if it’s right for you is if you walk in the door. Yeah!

Ok. “How do you battle with weight loss resistance? I’m a clean paleo girl, and the last 10 pounds since my last pregnancy three years ago are making me legit crazy.” Ok, Erin, stop worrying about 10 f*cking pounds, that’s how. That’s how you get over that weight loss resistance. If you’re getting on the scale every single day, and you’re worrying about it, just like I talked about before, you’re messing up that stress hormone. Knock it off. So stop worrying about 10 pounds. Just start worrying about living your good life, eating clean, working out.

You say you’re a clean paleo girl; I don’t know if you don’t work out or not, but maybe adding some different workouts to that routine. Adding in weight resistance workouts. Whatever it may be, but stop worrying about 10 pounds. Our whole lives, most of us, there are some people who their weight doesn’t change. My weight changes 10 pounds all the time. And if I worried about it, I would be up at that 10 pounds constantly. If I don’t worry about it, my body is able to regulate itself by eating clean and working out and lifting weights.

So you said you’re eating clean; stop worrying about the 10 pounds, and maybe if you’re not working out, adding in some weight resistance training, because that is huge. Lifting is awesome!

5. Listener questions: Random [1:03:23]

Ok. Let’s see. Ok. These are kind of random questions that I’ve added in here. These are all just random ones all over the place, for the last questions. Ok, Cassy asks, “What is next on your travel bucket list?”

So right now, high on my bucket list is New Zealand. I want to go to New Zealand really bad. It’s just getting that type of time off to stay there for a while for my husband is close to impossible. Stupid jobs. But that’s on my bucket list for sure.

I want to go to Europe, when I have more money. Because I want to travel all around Europe. But I don’t know. Right now it’s just New Zealand is on the future bucket list. That’s what I’m hoping for. I have little trips here and there, but I really want to go to New Zealand. I’ll talk my husband into quitting his job at some point, right? Right? Probably not.

Ok, Theresa. “Not a question for your podcast, but maybe. I’m wondering if you’re making another cookbook?” And Theresa, I am not making another cookbook. That is not on the agenda. No future plans of writing a cookbook. Yeah, it’s not that much fun. Writing cookbooks is not that much fun. Unless you’re like super famous and rich, like Giada. Then it would be little bit more fun, maybe. I don’t know. Maybe not. But yeah. Nope, working on the blog. Working on some cooking videos coming up. Working on a special project right now that has to do with clothes. So doing other stuff instead. No books.

This one is by Fabulous Natalie. “Best way to stay motivated?” I don’t know if you mean; I mean I guess that can be a broad question. The best way to stay motivated is to love what you do. Love the workouts that you’re going to, love the gym that you’re going to, love the job that you do, and I think that really helps with staying motivated. But, also just self-improvement. If you want to improve yourself, you will take the steps to get certain things done. And that’s how you stay motivated. Like, I want to live a certain life, and I make it happen by doing the daily things I need to get done. And that’s what helps me stay motivated, if that makes sense. So find something you love, and that will really help for sure. If you don’t love it, find something else. Because life is too damn f*cking short. That is for sure.

Savs Smith. “When you got out to dinner with new friends, how do you explain you’re gluten free and dairy free? What explanation do you give? I always get so embarrassed.” You should not get embarrassed; who gives a f*ck. I tell them; I mean, I guess I don’t hang out with many new people, because I don’t like people. But I just say that’s I have digestive issues with gluten and dairy, and so I just stay away from it. I eat gluten free, and if people start to ask questions I explain what gluten does to your body and how the body is affected by it. So they can start; if they’re asking kind of rude questions, I can give them the background of what gluten can do to a body and why, so they can kind of maybe take a glance at their own body and how it’s functioning.

But I don’t think that’s an embarrassing thing to have to explain. If you have digestive issues, that’s I think a common term, and most people have digestive issues. And you say you don’t want to feel that way; I think people understand that and leave you alone. And if they don’t, it’s their own insecurities. So, don’t feel embarrassed, poodle!

OK, this one is Moira Build. “What feeds your soul?” My dog, for sure. “Do you set goals for your personal growth, separate from career goals and work out goals?” You know, I mostly set; OK I don’t sit down and set goals of like I want this by this certain date. I just know that I want to improve in all aspects of my life. I want to mentally improve, I want to physically improve. I want to improve my business, I want to improve my marriage. I want to improve my friendships. I don’t set; okay I want to make this amount of money by this. I want to retire at this age. I want to have children at this age; definitely that’s not on the agenda. But I don’t set any of those certain goals of life because that’s just not how I am. I see how things are changing, and I set goals around that.

But what feeds my soul is self-improvement. Self-improvement, and that’s in all aspects of both business and personal. And I just want to improve all the way around. I want to be better than I was yesterday, and that’s it. That’s what feeds my soul; along with my dog. Whose little butt is just poking up at me. And he just farted in my face, cool.

Becky Joy. “Do you think your success of your blog is in part because you did not follow a prescribed coached way of monetizing it like so many? In essence, do you think it grew organically because it feels more authentic and attracts more readers and investors?”

You know, I don’t know if I didn’t monetize in the prescribed way. I mean, I have advertising on my website, and I work with companies, and I think that’s how many other bloggers do, as well. But I think any person’s success with their blog or their business comes from them staying true to themselves. And that’s what I’ve done. And I know people think that I haven’t stayed true to myself. Like my personality has changed. I’m like; well, I started writing this blog when I was 23 years old and now I’m almost 30; so of course my personality has changed, and my goals have changed, and my life has changed, and so I’ve changed with it. And just not everybody has wanted to change with it.

But I think any sort of success comes from just being authentically you, and that’s what people gravitate towards. You know, I have the Food Network on in the background. And why is Giada successful, or why is Bobby Flay successful? Because they probably first stayed true to themselves. But they’re just authentic people that you can connect with. And I hope people feel the same way with me.

But I don’t know how people prescribed monetization; I don’t know what that looks like. I feel like I probably did that, but I continue to find different ways to monetize my blog, and I feel like others do the same thing. So I hope that answers your question. I don’t know. I don’t know exactly.
A whole lot of chasley. That’s the name. “Would you ever do another Whole30 or 21-Day Sugar Detox? If so, what would your strategy be in being successful in finishing?” I would not do another Whole30 or 21-Day Sugar Detox, as I’ve those in my life as I’ve gotten into paleo. Restricting does not work for me. It does not work for my slightly addictive personality. And saying I can’t have something makes me want it much more. I don’t need a Whole30, because I eat clean on a regular basis. I don’t need a 21-Day Sugar Detox because I know I can cut sugar off, and I don’t need to follow a prescribed way of doing it.

So I wouldn’t do it for me. And if I did go in with a strategy if I was doing something like that, it would be don’t be such a f*cking psycho about it. Because people are psycho about it. I was psycho about it. We’ve all done that, if we’ve done certain sort of diets. And if you’re such a psycho, how are you going to be psycho like that forever? Are you? Because that life f*cking sucks. Maybe you want to be that psycho. I see those psychos all the time. But I don’t want to be that psycho. I want to live a fun life, that I go out with my friends, and I have dinner, and I go to restaurants, and I make certain foods, and I eat snacks with my husband, and I eat ice cream tonight. That’s the life I want to live.

So, I wouldn’t do them. I’m not talking sh*t about those two companies; they’re great businesses, and they help so many. It just doesn’t work for me, and I found that out because I’ve done multiple Whole30’s and 21-Day Sugar Detoxes. And just living a healthy long-term lifestyle is what works for me.

Ok. Anna. This one, “What’s your favorite brand of skinny jeans and flare jeans? I feel like it’s impossible to find jeans that” why do I suck at reading? My mom always tried to get me in reading classes because I was terrible at it. No way, mom! OK, “I feel like it’s impossible to find jeans that look good if you have even slightly muscular legs.”

And f*ck no, that’s not true, girlfriend! Go to Express right now and find yourself some skinny jeans. They are the best. They’re the stretchiest; I love them. So Express has amazing jeans. If you go to Nordstrom, Articles of Society has extremely stretchy jeans for muscular legs. Those two brands are great.

And then my favorite pair of flare jeans and I can’t really find them on the internet anymore, but I find them at a lot of boutiques is Flying Monkey. Flying Monkey is my favorite pair of flare jeans, I’m obsessed with them. They make me feel so comfortable and confident, and they’re stretchy. But Express, girlfriend. Get to Express. They have the best.

This one is from Stacia. “What advice do you have for getting out of a binge cycle?” Clean up the food that you’re eating. So if you are in this sort of binge cycle, I think it’s very helpful to get clean food. If I have been eating a lot of food, I’ve been on vacation and eating more food and more salt than I usually do, I just have a clean meal. I have some salmon, I have green vegetables, and I keep it super simple like that. That’s how I’d eat.

And that really gets me out of that binge cycle of food that’s not that good for you. So clean up the diet and you’ll find yourself not binging on those cleaner food. If you have this salmon filet and a ton of green vegetables, it’s much harder to binge on. You’re going to eat a lot of it, but it’s not going to be overdoing it. Your body is going to be more able to say, “Ok, I’m full. I’m satisfied.” And not overdo it. So try that out.

“Can you do a hair tutorial?” This one is from Trobe-blah-blah. Girlfriend, or guy friend, whoever you are. I have a hair tutorial under the beauty tab on my blog. Boom. How’s that? How about them apples?

“Who takes all your amazing pics in all your outfits?” My photographer. Her name is Ashley Kitter.

This is from Meg Bug. “What’s your favorite part of being married?” Being married is awesome. I have such a good husband. I don’t talk about him much on my blog or any of my social media, I keep that really private, but he is f*cking cool. If we ever have any sort of issue or frustration, he works so hard to improve whatever we’re having issues with. And I want to be more like him. I think I try hard, too. But he’s just the best. He’s such a great husband.

So I think the best part of being married is knowing you have someone there always. I always have him to turn to talk to and get advice from. I always have him to hang out with. I always have him to share my upsets and highs and lows. He’s just great. And how great is it being married and; I love not having to go out and worrying about how I look. Not like physically, but I would always worry about dating sh*t and like, ok I have to do my hair, and how am I looking sitting on a couch talking to other people. All that stupid bullsh*t that I used to worry about, and you know that was my own issues, not not having a husband issues. But it’s just so cool having a person who loves me for me in all aspects, and I feel the same way about him and being there for each other.

Jackson, Jackson that was my hand. It literally hit the couch. Excuse me. You’re the pits. Jackson. Oh my god, how rude is he?

But yeah. Being married is awesome. Everybody says that the first year of marriage is hard, and it has not been hard. It’s been easy peasy, lemon squeezy, thankfully. I like being married!

This one is from Beck Lance. “On average, how many miles do you walk with Jackson each day?” Oh my god, like maybe not even a mile. Maybe a mile. We probably walk less than a mile every day. If we go on multiple walks, maybe we get a little bit more than that, or long walks then he’ll get a few miles in. But that’s when the weather permits, or it’s nice out, or I just have time to go on an hour walk. But yeah, I would say just a mile or so. That’s it.

This next question is, “What does your typical coffee order look like when you travel?” I usually get iced or hot; iced coffee or hot coffee. And I ask for heavy cream on the side, and I pour in my own heavy cream. And that’s my order. That’s my coffee order.

If a place has homemade almond milk, or like homemade nut milk or something, then I’ll get that, but not many places do that. And I don’t like the almond milks that most companies carry, so I just don’t even order that. I just get coffee with heavy cream, because I do fine with diary.
Audrey Smith, “How does your husband feel about kids? What age do you think you guys will have one, if any?” So I talked about a podcast; I have a podcast about why having kids scares the sh*t out of me. I don’t really like kids. And I can’t imagine raising one. I’m not to that stage in my life at all. So my husband is 7 years older and he likes kids more than I do. Like he has fun playing with kids. And if I turned to him today and I was like, hey, do you want to start trying to have kids? He’d be like, sure. I’m sure he’d be totally cool with it.

But when we met six or so years ago, that was one of the first things I told him, was I don’t know if I want to have kids so you have to be ok with that, because I don’t know if that will ever change. It could, but it might now, so I don’t know. So, he likes kids, but I think he also sees our friends who have kids and how it can be incredibly stressful having kids. But also on the relationship. And it is really fun being in a marriage where you’re really happy and you don’t have a ton of stresses, and kids can be extremely stressful. And it can be extremely stressful on the relationship. And so I just like being married and not having that stress right now. Man.

None of my friends who have had kids make it look like it’s fun in any capacity. Birthing them. Holding them. One of my girlfriends, she did great in her pregnancy. But birthing them; nope, that doesn’t look fun. Being up every 2 hours because they have to eat like that for the first two weeks or whatever; that doesn’t look fun. So I think as we see more friends have kids, we’re like; ok, we’re not prepared for that. And I’ definitely not there.

This one kind of segues into it. Rachel. “I know you’ve mentioned in the past that you grew up eating sh*t like most of us did. How are your parents now? Have they adapted to a healthier lifestyle with your influence?” I have no idea what my parents eat. My dad actually introduced me to paleo. He almost passed away when I was in high school, and he had to be pumped with all these steroids, and he gained weight. And he’s smaller than I am. He probably weighs less than I do, honestly. He’s a small guy. They had to pump him with all these steroids, so he gained a bunch of weight. And somebody introduced him to the paleo diet to lose weight, but to also really regain his health. And that was his first introduction to paleo. That was my first introduction. But I didn’t really get into paleo for years later.

So, my dad, he ate that way for a long time, and now he goes through these phases of loving to make bread. And he makes bread all the time. And so they don’t follow paleo diet; I don’t think my mom does in anyway. But I have no idea what they eat on a regular basis. I don’t hang out with them enough. Hi, parents, if you’re listing. Love you. But we don’t hang out enough to talk about their diet. And I’m sure; you know, people don’t like to talk about their diet, because they think I’m judgey. I don’t’ give a sh*t how you eat honestly. You do what you want with your own health. But yeah. My dad ate paleo for a long time. So we can kind of connect on that.
This is another kind of kid question. So this is curated Windsy. “How would you feed your kids? I know you don’t necessarily want to have kids, but if you did, what would you do? I always see moms who obsess over food themselves, but when it comes to their kids they don’t hesitate about giving them McDonald’s. I wish my mom didn’t feed me those things as a child. I feel like I could have had a better start on life and wouldn’t have so many body issues now as an adult.” Whoo! You’re preaching to the choir, here girl. I feel the same way. I wish I wouldn’t have been fed that. And that’s really hard to say though, as an outside person who has never had kids. I think it’s so easy to say that you’d feed your children a certain way. But then I see people say that, and then it’s like all hell breaks loose as a mom and you like, what the f*ck else am I going to do? I have three kids, just feed them what I can at this point. So, I can’t say what I would do.

I would try to feed my children gluten free at home, and I would try to feed them a ton of veggies and just try my best at that. But as I heard from Michelle Tam; she eats paleo and they eat really clean at their house, she has a challenging time with her younger son. And so he eats eggs, and then if he gets sick of something, he can have whatever they’re eating. And that’s how she kind of gets him to eat more things. So I would just do I guess the best that I could. But I would not go to McDonald’s. I don’t go to McDonald’s myself, and I’m not going to take my kid to McDonald’s. I luckily live in an area where I can get almost just as fast food that’s way healthier. Like we have a place called mod market where you can get food, not as quick as McDonald’s but it’s like you order and you wait for 6-7 minutes to get your order. You have go inside. But they have chicken, potatoes, and vegetables. And that’s what I would go for if I needed fast food options.

And I feel like there are enough options out nowadays where you could maybe do a meal planning service. But there are so many options out now. Companies make it easy, and if you are creative enough you can come up with things. But I would not feed them McDonald’s. F*ck no. No way. And I wouldn’t feed them pop, either. Soda, whatever you call it. I don’t believe in those two things. I think they’re disgusting and I think they should be gone. So yeah, no soda and no McDonald’s, or like fast food. It would be the healthier options out there. I would take my kids to Chipotle, and get them like a rice bowl or whatever. That’s what I would do. But that’s just me. And what do I know, because I don’t f*cking have kids. So, who knows. But no. McDonald’s is gross, don’t eat that.

Ok. This one is; I only have like three more. So this one is from a name I don’t understand. “More about beauty favorites; both face and body. Favorite books and audio books. Favorite fun podcasts. Love your listener questions podcasts.” Oh, that’s so fun.

OK, so I am doing a favorite beauty products post really soon. So I’m not going to list them all on here, because I’m going to share them in a post, so you can visually see them and get them there instead of trying to write stuff down or having to rewind. So I’ll do a beauty products really soon on the blog. So stay tuned for that.

Favorite podcast right now; hold on I’m going to pull it up so I make sure I don’t miss any. So obviously, Wine and Crime. I love Reality Steve. I love Mind Pump. My Favorite Murder, Girls Gone WOD. Generation Why. I love How I Built This with Guy Raz. Off the Vine with Caitlin Bristow. Rose Pricks when the Bachelor is on. The Vanished; I think that’s a really cool podcast. She’s doing cool stuff. So those are kind of my; I mean, they’re not all fun, because there’s some true crime in there. But fun for us to listen to.

I don’t read books, because I just don’t have time, and I haven’t listened to any audio books. But I know Cassy Joy of Fed and Fit listens to audio books a lot, so she might have great recommendations. So hopefully those answer your questions.

And then Maria Greenwall asks, “When is your eBook with Cassy, Lexie, and Vanessa coming out? When is it being released? And more plans to collaborate in the future?” So we actually pushed our eBook back because we all have stuff going on. Cassy pregnant, trying to get ready for her first baby to come out, so she can get all prepped and ready for that. So we had to push our eBook back. Now we don’t know when we’re going to come out with that, but hopefully we get to work on that in the future, but we had to push it back because we all had so much stuff going on and just couldn’t juggle it all at the same time. So yes. That’s it.

OK. Last question. Collagen. “I know from your posts that you’ve taken collagen supplement for a long time now. Have you noticed a difference since when you started? I’m curious since I’ve heard great things, but I’ve only added collagen in my diet for about two weeks.” So, yes, I have collagen in my coffee every single morning. And I use Vital Proteins at the moment, sometimes Great Lakes, and I just use a scoop in my coffee. I blend it or just stir it in if it’s hot coffee. I have noticed a huge difference in my hair. Never in my life have I ever had compliments on my hair, and I swear I get like one compliment a week on my hair at this point. And it’ll be like when it’s dirty, it’s greasy, and I’ll have just brushed it out. And someone will give me a compliment. It’s crazy.

So my hair’s been growing and it’s like much healthier and much thicker. And my nails grow. So yeah, that’s the main difference I’ve seen with collagen. And hopefully it helps with my skin long-term and I stay young forever Jackson. Do you love me? Can I have a kiss? Oh, did you hear him kiss me?

He’s such a gemmy- gem.

So those are all the questions today, Jackson. We answered them all. If I didn’t answer them, and you’re like, Juli, you’re such a b*tch! Feel free to email me. That’s because my assistant sees it first, so she won’t tell me if someone called me a b*tch or not.

But if you didn’t get a question answered, and you want it answered, just go to I have this podcast where you can leave comments, or you can always reach out to me on social media. I don’t e-mail back super fast, so know social media comments or comments on my blog are much quicker. So I’d recommend leaving them there. Thank you guys so much for leaving questions. It is so fun to actually have a community to talk to, because I feel like I’m by myself most of the time in this house. So getting feedback from others and knowing that you’re actually listening to the podcast is super cool.

And let me know if your liking the interviews more, if you like the podcast by themselves. Because I’m trying to do both and just mix both in there, but I’d love to hear your feedback and what you like the most so I can keep up with that.

Thanks so much for listening today. You’re a real gem. You’re a real peach. I have to burp. Excuse me. Every time I’ve interviewed someone, I’ve burped, and so I’m wondering if you can hear it. I can’t help it, ok. It was a very quiet burb; it’s not a fart. That’s way gross. It’s just a burp, ok?

So, if you like the podcast, don’t forget to leave a review. That’s super helpful for the podcast. I’m trying to get better and better with this podcast and take more time to it. So if you could leave a review, that would be so appreciated. If you hate this podcast, no need to leave a review. You can just say, “Juli’s the worst!” And I’ll agree with you.

And if you like this podcast, feel free to subscribe, and that’s the best. Go check out Wine and Crime. I know I keep pushing them, but I’m seriously obsessed. And don’t forget about Butcher Box. You can go to to get $10 off your order, and two free ribeyes for that first order. You’re going to love it. It’s the best. And I’ll talk to you guys next time, because I have a special, really cool interview coming out next week that you guys are going to love. Stay tuned. I’ll see you guys next week. See you guys, hear from you guys, talk to you guys, love you guys. Bye guys!

I asked on instagram if you guys had any questions and I’m answering all of them here! If I missed anything, feel free to leave a comment on the blog and I’m happy to answer it!! Big thank you to […] I asked on instagram if you guys had any questions and I’m answering all of them here! If I missed anything, feel free to leave a comment on the blog and I’m happy to answer it!! Big thank you to […] PaleOMG Uncensored yes 1:31:43
Michelle Tam of Nom Nom Paleo – Episode 53: PaleOMG Uncensored Podcast Sat, 07 Oct 2017 12:06:08 +0000 10 In this podcast, I’m chatting with the great Michelle Tam from! Michelle’s blog was one of the first paleo blogs I came across when I started paleo and she continues to crush it in the blog and cookbook world. […] In this podcast, I’m chatting with the great Michelle Tam from! Michelle’s blog was one of the first paleo blogs I came across when I started paleo and she continues to crush it in the blog and cookbook world. She has some of the most creative and beautiful dishes I’ve ever seen and her cookbooks will absolutely blow you away. But the best part about Michelle is she is just a damn good person. If you haven’t met Michelle yet, get to know her on her blog! And be sure to check out her two cookbooks – Nom Nom Paleo Cookbook and Ready or Not Cookbook!


Big Thank You to Our Sponsor – ButcherBox

ButcherBox sources and delivers the best quality grass-fed, grass-finished, antibiotic and hormone-free, pasture-raised beef, chicken and pork straight to your doorstep. And getting your ButcherBox is super easy – just select your box, customize it to your liking, and then set your schedule of how often you want to receive your ButcherBox. They offer free shipping to the contiguous 48 states and each classic box is filled with 8-11 pounds of meat. They also just launched their custom box so customers can actually choose everything that comes in their box! And right now, PaleOMG Uncensored listeners can get $10 off their first order PLUS 2 FREE grass fed, grass finished ribeyes! Click here to receive this special offer!


Support the podcast by clicking the Subscribe button on iTunes and please a review only if you love the podcast! There is enough negativity in this world, don’t spread more. I love hearing about what YOU want me to talk about so feel free to leave on comment here or on social media with topics you’d like me to cover! And don’t forget, some posts have affiliate links which I may be compensated from. This compensation helps with keeping this blog and up and running! Thank you so much for your support, you guys are amazing!


Episode 54 Transcription!

Well hey there darlin’ face. Welcome to another episode of PaleOMG Uncensored. I have a very special guest today that I’m a tad obsessed with. But before I get to that lovely person, let’s talk about this month’s sponsor. Because they are the best. And hopefully you listened to last weeks’ episode when I talked to the owner, Mike, of Butcher Box. And that’s who our sponsor is this month. Butcher Box. And when I say our sponsor, I don’t know who I’m talking about. I’m literally talking about myself. This is a one-man operation over here.

Anywho. Butcher Box is the best. And I love them. And I’ve used them for probably 8 months at this point. If you haven’t heard me talk about it on my blog, or even here, or on my Instagram, let me tell you a little bit about it. I’m tripping over every word.

If you haven’t heard of Butcher Box, they deliver pasture raised, grass-fed, grass-finished, the best quality beef, chicken, and pork that’s humanely raised and free of antibiotics and hormones. And they deliver it straight to your doorstep. So you don’t have to go to the grocery store and try to figure out what is the best quality meat. They source it for you, and deliver it right to you. It’s so awesome.

So all you have to do is select your box. Log in online, you select your box, you customize it to your liking, and you set your schedule for how often you want to receive that Butcher Box. They offer free shipping to the contiguous 48 states. And each classic box is filled with 8-11 pounds of meat.

They also launched their custom box, which I think is super cool because you get to pick whatever meat you want in it. So, say you’re like, I am a cool ass b*tch; I only want a little filet mignon, throw in a little bacon. That’s all I want in my box. Boom, done. If you like only stew meat because it’s fall and you just want to put everything in the crockpot, boom. You can pick it. So you can pick exactly what you want, and then you can cook from my recipes. Which makes it even easier.

And because they are the best, get this. PaleOMG Uncensored listeners are going to get $10 off their first order, plus two free grass-fed, grass-finished ribeyes. So all you have to do is go to and then you can figure out the perfect box for you. You’ll get $10 off your first order and two free ribeyes for new customers. It is awesome you guys. I use it in almost every single recipe. I put all the meat in the freezer when I get it, because it’s already frozen, and then I can pick as I go. I just marinated some steak tips in the fridge overnight, and I’m about to cook them. I don’t know if you can hear the onions in the back. But I’m about to cook everything up to make a new recipe for you guys.

So check them out. You’re going to love them.

This is Juli Bauer from PaleOMG and you are listening to PaleOMG Uncensored.

Juli Bauer: Ok. We are on! Welcome to another episode of PaleOMG Uncensored. My name is Juli Bauer Roth, and today I have the best guest of all time. I have Michelle Tam from Nom Nom Paleo. Thank you so much, Michelle, for coming on.

Michelle Tam: Thank you. You’re making me blush.

Juli Bauer: {laughs} Aww. Well I’m so excited to have you. A little history on us. Michelle and I met, it had to have been like 5 years ago at, what was it? It was like a paleo event in Estes Park.

Michelle Tam: Oh, that’s right! I forgot about that. Yeah, Melissa Julwan and I and Holly Woodcock. We had a paleo event way up in Estes Park. And I think one of the organizers was like, “Hey, we should have Juli come!” And I was like, “Yeah, that would be awesome! Because I’ve never met her and I think she’s really awesome.” But I think because I don’t know geography, I didn’t realize she was asking you to drive like 3 hours into the mountains. {laughing}

Juli Bauer: {laughs}

Michelle Tam: So now I’m like; oh I’m so sorry I made you come out. {laughs}

Juli Bauer: Oh my gosh. And me being the idiot, I looked at the map in the morning before I left. I was like, “Oh sh*t I need to leave now!” Like, I didn’t even know how far Estes Park is. Being a Colorado native, I don’t even know how to understand that. And then I was lost for a good 2 hours when I got to Estes Park before I even got to the event. And the event is like full on going. And I’m like, oh hi. I felt like such an ass.

Michelle Tam: No, it was amazing. And then you came up and did the cooking demo with me. And you danced. It was amazing.

Juli Bauer: {laughs} I can’t believe that was like 5 years ago.

Michelle Tam: I know! I forgot.

Juli Bauer: I wish they would have been able to do that event again. That was so fun.

Michelle Tam: I do too, except it’s far. {laughs}

Juli Bauer: {laughs} That’s super far for you guys.

Michelle Tam: But it was nice. When we came out to Denver, just on our last book tour, we were like, “We need to go to the Stanley Hotel.” Because I have a kid who is obsessed with Stephen King. And I’m like, “OK, we will drive to Estes Park.” And we realize how far this is from Denver now! {laughs}

Juli Bauer: I know. It’s so far. And it’s just kind of a pain in the ass.

Michelle Tam: It’s beautiful though.

Juli Bauer: It is. It is so pretty. Pretty much anywhere in Colorado is pretty no matter where you turn.

Michelle Tam: Yeah.

Juli Bauer: So for everybody who doesn’t know who Michelle Tam is, you can kind of just give a little background about who you are, how you started Just a little background about you.

Michelle Tam: Ok. Well, I was just, I think a regular working mom. And I was working nights; I always tell people I was a drug dealer. And I was. I was a pharmacist at a hospital, and I worked at night. And I think we had two kids, and our second kid turned 3. So at that time, my kids are kind of sleeping through the night. But then my husband and I kind of turned to each other and we were like, ugh. We need to get in shape again. And we didn’t really know what that meant. We were like, oh I think that means counting calories and exercising like crazy. So that’s what I did.

And then Henry, my husband, decided to kind of dabble in different things. I think he discovered P90x, because I guess everybody with kids is like, oh we have to exercise at home. We can buy these DVDs. And he started a blog to kind of keep himself accountable. And he started kind of researching everybody in the P90x videos. And he’d write about them on the blog {laughs}.

And one of the people in the P90x videos was Mark Sisson. So I think when he started kind of Google searching what he was up to, he came across Mark’s Daily Apple. And he was like, huh. This sounds kind of interesting. I’m going to just give this a try. And when he told me about this whole primal/paleo diet thing, I was like, this sounds crazy. It goes against everything I’ve ever learned. And I’m the one who has a nutrition degree, and I work in a hospital. What do you mean whole grains are bad for you? Why are you eating fat again? Why are you eating red meat?

So I tried to sabotage him. But he just kind of kept at it. And he immediately got a 6-pack, which was super annoying. And he started doing CrossFit. And then he started deadlifting like 300 pounds. Crazy stuff. And here I was, totally miserable. Still had my muffin top. I was hungry all the time. And I was finally like; hmm. Maybe I should give this thing a try. Even though I think it sounds really lame. And then when I did it, it felt like I was in the Matrix. I was like, “Oh my gosh, I feel so much better! How come nobody talks about how real food makes such a big difference?” I mean, it’s all such obvious stuff, you know what I mean?

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Michelle Tam: Obviously you know. And that was when I started the blog. Because Henry has been blogging for a while. He had this daddy blog, and he had his fitbomb P90X blog. And then I think out of the blue I mentioned. I’m like, “Hey I think I’m going to do like a paleo food blog.” He’s like, really? I’m like yeah. He’s like, what would you call it? I’m like, Nom Nom Paleo. He’s like, ok.

Juli Bauer: {laughs} That’s easy.

Michelle Tam: And then the next day, I guess, he got me a Tumblr site and bought the domain. He’s like, “Here’s you a Tumblr site. It will be really easy for you to post things.” Because he knows I’m not very technical. And so I just started posting stuff. Never expecting anyone would ever read anything. So I used to swear a lot because I couldn’t do it in real life, and I couldn’t do it at work. I was like, I will do it on the internet.

Juli Bauer: {laughs}

Michelle Tam: It started with me just writing about what I ate every day. Because I was like, I don’t know what people eat on paleo. So maybe this is something useful. And then it kind of morphed into now more evergreen recipe content. But if you go back in my archives, it’s pretty gross. The pictures are terrible. It’s just bad.

Juli Bauer: Yeah, paleo food blogs, when they started, were the most horrendous photos ever. They were so terrible.

Michelle Tam: Except; I think Bill and Hayley.

Juli Bauer: Yeah, they kept their sh*t together.

Michelle Tam: Were probably the one exception, right? Because even from the beginning they had beautiful photos and everything.

Juli Bauer: And they totally think differently, but that’s so not true. Their first cookbook is still so beautiful.

Michelle Tam: Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah. But I think that’s the thing. You just keep at it, and you try to improve, and you work hard at it. That’s kind of; yeah, that’s my story. {laughs}

Juli Bauer: So then your blog obviously grew into two cookbooks. What made you want to write your first cookbook?

Michelle Tam: Well initially we didn’t want to do a cookbook. I think, as soon as paleo started getting more popular, around 2011, 2012. A bunch of people were getting cookbook deals, and we were approached for a cookbook deal. But it wasn’t; like the people who were pitching us were like, “You should do a paleo junk food book!” And I’m like, that’s not really my strength. {laughs}

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Michelle Tam: So then Henry, who is always very particular about how things look and the stuff we make. He was like; no, let’s do our own thing. And I think we ended up seeing some article in the New York Times about how apps were the new cookbook and print cookbooks were going to be the way of the dinosaur and cookbook apps were the way to go. So we were like; oh, we should do a cookbook app. We had just gotten an iPad, and we’re like, this thing is amazing!

So we created a cookbook app, but we didn’t realize how crazy expensive it is if you’re not a developer. How much upkeep there is. How people don’t want to pay more than 99 cents for it.

Juli Bauer: Yeah. Yeah.

Michelle Tam: So I think the first time after our app came out. And Apple came out with a new iOS update, which breaks your app every time.

Juli Bauer: Oh my gosh.

Michelle Tam: We were like, huh. I think we want to do a physical cookbook. Just because I think there’s something about a physical cookbook. And I collect tons and tons of cookbooks. I was like, I would just like this thing kind of forever.

So then we just started working on one on our own. Because Henry was determined to do the whole self-publishing thing. And then our publisher reached out when we were probably like 80% done with our first cookbook. And basically gave us an offer we couldn’t refuse, where they kind of gave us all creative control but they would help us with editing and all this stuff we didn’t know. Our first cookbook came out. And we were like, this was a lot of work. I don’t know if we’re going to do a second one. But then three years later, we came out with a second one. {laughs}

Juli Bauer: I know. And I don’t think people quite; if they’ve never written a cookbook, they don’t understand how much work goes into a cookbook. And the amount of work you put in your cookbook is 4 billion steps above anyone else, and that’s broad to say. But I say that because you take photos of every single step of every single recipe. So for everything to look nice, and the lighting to be correct, and food placement to be perfect for every single step of every single recipe is out of control. I can’t believe you do that for both cookbooks.

Michelle Tam: Well, I mean, that is Henry. Henry is kind of crazy and amazing. He has a real job, and it’s like a hard job. And then when he’s not at work, he helps do all the graphics, and photos, and design, and cartoons, and stuff for Nom Nom Paleo. So whenever people talk about the photos, and the step by step, and all that. I’m like, that’s Henry. He just likes things a certain way, and that’s how we do it.

That’s also why when you’re like, “Oh, it’s all beautiful.” I’m like, actually, if you take a quick look at our book; or a closer look. I mean, I think a quick look you might miss it. But a closer look, you’ll see that I have bedhead in most of the pictures. I have glasses, I’m in my pajamas. Sometimes the caption for the photo is over my face because I insisted. I was like, Henry, you have to cover my face in this picture because I just woke up.

Juli Bauer: {laughs}

Michelle Tam: {laughs} And I’ve had people tell me, too. They’re like, you know what’s so great about your book? It’s not so much the step by step pictures, which is unusual. But it’s the fact that you just look so real in this cookbook, and you’re not all glamourous looking.

Juli Bauer: {laughing}

Michelle Tam: I’m like, well, that’s {laughing} because we’re taking pictures.

Juli Bauer: Those great compliments.

Michelle Tam: I know, I know. I’m like, no it’s true. Because it’s like when I wake up in the morning and on the weekends and at night. And it’s just whenever we’re working on it. And I don’t have time to get all glamourous. Because number one, I’m a mess when it comes to that. But it’s also just kind of our reality.

Juli Bauer: How many months; or did it take more than months, to create both of your cookbooks? Was it a couple of years? Like after you wrote your first one, how long until you started writing your second one?

Michelle Tam: I think we kind of always bank recipes without knowing what we’re going to do with them. Just because we’re always taking pictures, and perfecting things, and tinkering with things. So this latest book really did take like 3 years. So if you even look at the pictures, you’ll see that my kids look really young and babyish {laughing} in some of the photos. And in other ones, they look like little adults. And it’s because it’s taken that long. My hair I think turned grey in the whole process, so you’ll see that my hair is turning grey.

Juli Bauer: {laughing}

Michelle Tam: Now it’s black again, because I started dying it. {laughing} So yeah, it’s taken a while. And it’s good, because our publisher did not; they understand our process. They’re like, ok whenever it’s done, we’re cool with it. We’re like, ok.

Juli Bauer: That’s awesome.

Michelle Tam: Because initially we were like, we’re not doing a second one. Our first one is it. And now that we’ve done the second one, Henry’s like, “we have to do a third, just to complete the trilogy.” I’m like, I am not even ready to start. There’s no amnesia yet. I’m still in it. {laughs}

Juli Bauer: Yeah. When you started writing your first cookbook, had you gone full time into blogging and writing cookbooks?

Michelle Tam: No.

Juli Bauer: When did you quit your pharmaceutical job?

Michelle Tam: I quit my drug-dealing job 2.5 years ago.

Juli Bauer: Ok.

Michelle Tam: And our book came out December 2013. So we were working; I was working nights, and we were doing the cookbook and everything on the side. Henry had his day job, and we had our kids. And so I think after the book came out; it’s so funny, because with my night schedule, I would work 7 nights in a row and then I had 7 off. I was like, “Oh this is perfect. I’ll work nights, and then in my week off I’ll do book tour stuff.” {laughs}

Juli Bauer: Oh man.

Michelle Tam: Now in hindsight, I’m like, that was insane.

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Michelle Tam: Because I never saw my kids. And I think that was kind of; with all the book tour stuff, and I think our app was nominated for a Webby award. That was kind of the tipping point. They weren’t sure they could get coverage for me so I could attend the Webby awards. And I was like, I can’t believe I might miss attending the Webby awards to work a night shift at the hospital. And that was when I was like, “I’m going to quit my job!” Even though, I was like, I’m not sure. As a good Chinese immigrant kid, I can’t quit. Because I need something stable. But I think; I still have my license. But I’m pretty happy with how things are right now. And not working nights.

Juli Bauer: And how do your parents feel? You said immigrant parents. How do your parents feel about your type of job nowadays?

Michelle Tam: You know, they’re better with it I think because they know our book has sold. {laughs}

Juli Bauer: Yeah, I get that.

Michelle Tam: I think it would be really different if I wasn’t making money. But at the same time, Henry still has his job. So I think in their mind, everything is ok. We have health insurance. You know what I mean?

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Michelle Tam: And, they know I still have an active license.

Juli Bauer: {laughs} You can fall back.

Michelle Tam: If it all exploded, I could go back to dealing drugs.

Juli Bauer: And that kind of made me think of a question someone asked. They asked, she was asking, with you having traditional Asian parents, do you ever deal with anything when you’re going out to eat or just what they grew up on when it comes to soy. Do you deal with any issues with your parents with that kind of related; food related stuff.

Michelle Tam: Yeah, for sure initially. I think they thought we were crazy. And they were like, “But you’ve eaten this your whole life. How can this be bad for you?” And I’m like, at the same time, don’t you remember when I was a kid and I would have stomach pains all the time you’d take me to the doctor and they’d rule out appendicitis, and they would just say it was gas. Do you know what I mean? And we’d be like, “Ok.” And I’d go to the doctor all the time. All of these ailments I had my whole life.

I had a canker sore in my mouth every single day ever since I can remember until I went paleo. And I’d have all this GI stuff. And I thought I had food poisoning all the time. All that stuff went away when I changed what I ate. And that’s kind of when I think they understood, “Oh, ok.” But I do think sometimes other relatives can also take it personally. Because they’re like, what do you mean this food that you grew up on isn’t ok for you? I’m like, no it’s not the food. It’s not the dishes.

That’s why I try to create paleo versions of the dishes, so I can still enjoy them. Because there’s a lot of dishes where I’m like, “Oh this brings back so many memories.” But if I were to eat the real thing, I would not feel good. But I also think, just like most immigrant parents. I think if you have success, then they’re like, “Oh ok.” {laughing}

Juli Bauer: Yeah. Yes.

Michelle Tam: I guess it’s alright. But I think if I was struggling, and it was all; they would be like, maybe you should go back to working nights.

Juli Bauer: {laughing} So have you raised your kids mostly paleo? I know you’ve talked about they eat different things. But how have you raised your kids to hopefully still eat vegetables and understand better food choices, and then let them free into the actual real world of whatever sh*t is at their actual school and whatever else when they’re going out with friends, and birthday parties, and everything else.

Michelle Tam: So I think it is; it’s a hard thing. Because initially Henry and I were the only ones that were paleo. And we were kind of cooking our kids whatever. It was still kind of whole grain; gluten free mac and cheese. Whatever it was. It was “healthy” but it was not stuff that we would eat. But everyone kept on asking me on the blog, what do your kids eat? What do your kids eat? And I’m like, this is not about my kids. This is about me and what I eat.

Juli Bauer: Yeah. {laughs}

Michelle Tam: {laughing}

Juli Bauer: Mind your business.

Michelle Tam: Right. But then I started realizing; no, it’s kind of true. Why is it that I won’t eat my kid’s leftovers, and it’s ok for me to serve it to them? I’m tired of being a short order cooked. And I think finally I just had to kind of confront it. So then when we did, we were like, “Ok we’re going to do one family meal. Whatever I make is what everyone is going to eat.” But there was some compromise. So instead of making like super spicy, or super weird stuff that I tend to do if Henry and I are eating alone. It was like, ok we have make stuff like crackling chicken, or roasted broccoli. Things that I think the kids would be more accepting of.

And definitely, like my older son is a people pleaser. And he’s like, “Oh this is all delicious. Whatever you make. You can make offal, and you can make gizzards, I will eat.” Whereas my younger son is like, “What do you mean we can’t have mac and cheese anymore? I don’t like the stuff that you’re serving me. This is gross.”

Juli Bauer: {laughs}

Michelle Tam: So there was, like for him, we kind of had this little bridge where we kind of compromised. Where if he didn’t like what we were eating. And he was super stubborn. And one day, while I was sleeping because I was working that night, Henry was like, “OK, I’ll take care of it. We’ll just go cold turkey.” And he basically told Ollie, who was like 3 or 4 at the time. “OK, this is our house, you have to live by our rules. And you’re going to eat what I’m going to make you.” And Ollie stormed outside, and was like, “Then I’m leaving!”

Juli Bauer: {laughs}

Michelle Tam: Henry’s like, huh. Let’s figure out what we’re going to do. So he loves scrambled eggs, and he loves roasted broccoli. So roasted broccoli is kind of like a default vegetable we always have anyway. And a scrambled egg doesn’t take that much time to make. So if he didn’t love whatever we were eating; he’d have to try it, but then we’d make him a fried egg. And he’d have roasted broccoli. And we did that breakfast lunch and dinner until finally he got sick of it. And now he does eat what we make. And he asserts his independence by just eating super, duper slow. To the point where the fat congeals on the plate.

Juli Bauer: Oh my god! {laughing}

Michelle Tam: I know, it’s gross. But he’ll eat it. We’re cool with how things are. And obviously, we’re not perfectly paleo. But when we’re at home, we do eat mostly paleo. Because when we go out; we just, like, the two of us, Ollie and I, have to be gluten free. Whereas my older son, he’s kind of like Henry where he could eat anything. But because he’s kind of going through puberty, he’s discovered that if he eats paleo, his skin is better. {laughs}

Juli Bauer: Oh. Yeah.

Michelle Tam: So that matters now, because of girls.

Juli Bauer: Yeah. That’s awesome that he’s noticed that.

Michelle Tam: Right. I’ve even told him; you know, you think the stuff mommy says is crazy, but here. While we were traveling you were eating like crazy. And then when we come back, and you’re eating the stuff I’m cooking you and you’re taking these crazy probiotic dirt pills, your skin has cleared up. Isn’t that crazy? {laughs} So I think he kind of begrudgingly, kind of is like, ok you’re right.

Juli Bauer: Yeah. {laughs}

Michelle Tam: And you know, they’re kids, but I think they know. And we always try to say; it’s not so much that you can’t ever have this. But hey, when you have this, this is how you feel an hour or two afterwards. Especially with Ollie and the gluten. He would get stomachaches and canker sores. And his personality would change. So we would say, hey look. Look what happens when you have this stuff. So he himself is really good about self-regulating.

When we go to a party, like a lot of times we’ll feed him ahead of time. But even at the party, he’s like, no the food is gross. It’s like some lame pizza or some bounce house or whatever. He’s like, it’s cool. I’ll come and eat whatever. And a lot of times, if they have cake, I’ll make sure that he has a gluten-free cupcake or something just so he doesn’t feel left out.

Juli Bauer: That’s awesome. It was crazy, you saying the canker sore thing. Because I grew up the same way. In and out of the hospital constantly with stomach aches. And they would pump me with fluid. And I had canker sores all the time growing up. And I never even put that. I always put the stomach aches together. But I have not had a canker sore in like years and years now, since being paleo. And I can’t believe I never kind of put that two and two together.

Michelle Tam: Me neither! I remember I would have them all the time. And I remember, I would ask my friends, “Do you guys have canker sores?” They’d be like, no is that a cold sore? Like, no, no! It’s different. {laughs} it’s in your mouth. It’s not herpes simplex. And I remember going to pharmacy school and looking up what causes them, and how do I treat them. And every journal article I looked up was like, they’re called aphthous ulcers, and they don’t know what causes them. And I’m like, ok. I just was like, whatever. It’s just something that I have.

Now, apparently there’s a big link with celiac disease, and I don’t know. For me, I was like, I don’t understand why I would just think. You have the same lining from your mouth to your butt. The same mucous lining through your whole intestines. And I don’t understand why I thought the sores would just be isolated to my mouth. Do you know what I mean?

Juli Bauer: Mm-hmm. Yeah.

Michelle Tam: So I’m sure there’s all sorts of stuff that was going on in my gut. And because I took out gluten and other processed foods, I just felt so much better.

Juli Bauer: That is so crazy. I never even thought of that.

Michelle Tam: It is. It’s crazy. There are so many things. It’s like why; it seems so obvious. But I was just like, oh no. Whatever people say is healthy. Whatever the doctor says is healthy, I’ll just go with it. And I won’t even think about how I feel. {laughing}

Juli Bauer: Yeah. Yeah. And obviously you’ve posted pictures. Especially when you’re traveling and you’re going to different places. I think you eat; like most people who do paleo and have been doing it for many years. You eat mostly paleo at home, but then when you’re traveling you do more gluten free things. Like a gluten free bun or you go to a bakery. So for your overall lifestyle, do you eat gluten free as much as possible or 100% of the time. Do you do this 80/20 that some people do? What is the best way for you?

Michelle Tam: For me, I have to be gluten free 100% of the time. And then in terms of; when I’m traveling I’m like, oh I’m going to try this gluten free whatever. Just because there’s no paleo restaurants in most places that you visit. So I try to post stuff, just so people can see what their options can be.

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Michelle Tam: Obviously, when I was traveling for like 4 weeks straight, and I was just. I mean, I was like, I can’t just eat gluten free buns and all this other stuff. Because I just wasn’t feeling great. So that’s when I would go to a Whole Foods and just get a bunch of salads and then other things that I knew were “clean”. Just because I was like, I’m sick of eating all of this stuff. Because anytime you go out to eat, there’s all sorts of weird stuff. As good as you’re trying to be, unless you’re cooking your own food, you don’t really know what’s in there.

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Michelle Tam: And people are like, where else do you go when you go out to eat? I’m like, well I do a ton of research. That’s what I love to do. I love being in my hotel room and being able to search and search and search for a great place for me to go. But a lot of times, I will go to a vegan place or a vegetarian place just because I know I can get lots of vegetables. They are totally cool with weird dietary restrictions. And then if I need some protein later I can stop by the store and get some prosciutto or some chicken breast or something to supplement it.

Juli Bauer: So you guys live; not full time. Is it Palo Alto?

Michelle Tam: Mm-hmm.

Juli Bauer: Ok. And then you have another house in Portland, right?

Michelle Tam: Yes. But we’re not in Portland as much as I would like.

Juli Bauer: Yes.

Michelle Tam: So whenever the kids have breaks, we are in Portland. We’re trying to figure all of it out. And figure out how we can; I would love to move to Portland permanently. But Henry has his job here. And we have elderly parents. So we’ve got to just figure it out. But I love being able to get away to Portland.

Juli Bauer: Portland is the best.

Michelle Tam: I know.

Juli Bauer: ` It’s just the weirdest coolest most delicious place. I try to go there every year, just like Austin. I love going to Austin, too. Do you have a top 3; and I know restaurants are coming in every single day to Portland and there’s something new to try every time you go back, I’m sure. But do you have your top 3 restaurants that you always go to whenever you’re in town in Portland?

Michelle Tam: Well, Departure.

Juli Bauer: Departure, of course.

Michelle Tam: I love. I have more than 3. But I love Ox. I love Nong’s Khao Man Gai. Like, her chicken rice is amazing.

Juli Bauer: I want to go there so bad!

Michelle Tam: Oh, and they have a paleo version. She has gluten free sauces. She doesn’t charge extra for gluten free, which I was like, oh you’re so cool.

Juli Bauer: That’s awesome.

Michelle Tam: And then if you want a fancy place that you can wear jeans to, Castanya is really good. There are so many places. Tusk just opened up and that’s really good. That’s why I have that #nomnomeatspdx. To put all the places that we go to. And then there’s casual places.

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Michelle Tam: There’s a burger place we always go to called PDX Sliders.

Juli Bauer: OK.

Michelle Tam: And I’m always trying to find new places. {laughs}

Juli Bauer: Yeah. That’s like my favorite thing to do. I look a lot on your page if I’m going to Portland. I’ll look on see where you’ve gone. Do you like to go to more Asian style places that offer gluten free? Is that your first place you look, or is it kind of any sort of food out there that has gluten free options? When you’re traveling and looking for restaurants.

Michelle Tam: I think any sort of food. But I think because it’s so hard to eat Asian food gluten free, if there’s a place that has it available and it’s supposed to be good, I want to check it out. Just to try it, because it’s been a long time since I’ve had Asian food at a restaurant. But like bamboo sushi in Portland.

Juli Bauer: So good.

Michelle Tam: All of their sauces are by default are gluten free. And I’m like, amazing! And all their fish is sustainable.

Juli Bauer: And their sweet and sour cauliflower.

Michelle Tam: Yeah.

Juli Bauer: OH my god. To die. To die!

Michelle Tam: And they have a new Bamboo Sushi in Denver! Like a little tiny one.

Juli Bauer: I know! It’s in this little place called Avanti, which has a bunch of different restaurants in moving crates, kind of cafeteria style.

Michelle Tam: Yeah, we went there. And we took a pic. But it was so crowded. We were like, dude it’s crazy here.

Juli Bauer: I know. It’s so weird. It’s like hit or miss. Sometimes it’s crazy and sometimes it’s not. But I heard it wasn’t doing very well.

Michelle Tam: Oh.

Juli Bauer: So I don’t know if it was just the location, because it was upstairs instead of downstairs. But I heard it wasn’t doing well. And I haven’t been to it still just because parking is madness around there.

Michelle Tam: Yeah, yeah, yeah.

Juli Bauer: But Bamboo is so good in Portland. I love going there. I went there with Kiera.

Michelle Tam: Yeah. Kiera’s got; whenever I’m like, what are the new cool places to go to? Kiera’s got the hook up. And, you know who else? Diane Sanfilippo. Even though she doesn’t go there that often, has very strong opinions about where she likes to eat. Like Ox is her number one favorite.

Juli Bauer: I can’t believe I haven’t been there. That was on my list. And there’s just too many to hit, and I didn’t hit there last time I went.

Michelle Tam: Ox is great. But you need more than 2 people to kind of fully enjoy the whole menu. Just because there are so many things to try.

Juli Bauer: Yeah. Is there any kind of food you don’t like eating? Is there anything; I’m a no eggplant type of person. I haven’t been impressed by eggplant ever. Is there anything you don’t like?

Michelle Tam: I love eggplant. I’m pretty open to most things. I don’t love uni, but I’ll still eat it. And I used to think I hated olives, but I realized I was just eating the wrong ones.

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Michelle Tam: But I’m pretty open to most things, I think.

Juli Bauer: I want to kind of talk about your website. Because obviously your website has been so popular and so amazing over the years. I’m sure you’ve run into all different sorts of issues. Because you used to have a Tumblr site, and then you moved it over to a regular.

Michelle Tam: WordPress. And that was just; I want to say less than a year ago.

Juli Bauer: Was that a hard move?

Michelle Tam: It was a hard move. We hired a guy to help us. And it was hard just because we had so many; I think we had thousands of posts. And Tumblr is just not; I mean, we were cool with Tumblr because it was free. We’re like, oh we don’t have to pay for hosting. We’re so cheap and stuff. But there’s nothing you can customize on Tumblr, really. We would try to hack things, and Henry would Google how to do things. Because he’s not technical either, but he’s really good at finding things out on Google. But I think we were like; well, I think Tumblr will probably go away eventually. You know what I mean?

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Michelle Tam: So we got to port things over. And we were just getting hit by sorts of SEO stuff, because we couldn’t do any SEO stuff. And yeah. We just finally bit the bullet. We knew we had to eventually move over, we just didn’t know when. And then I think when Yahoo bought Tumblr, and we’re like yay! But then now Yahoo I think is on the decline. So we’re like, ok we’ve got to pony up and switch it.

But Tumblr also is blocked on; because I mean they allow all sorts of things on Tumblr. {laughs} So whenever people would look at it at work, they’d be like, “We’d can’t see your site.” And I’m like, sorry! But now I think they can. Just because we’re on WordPress.

Juli Bauer: Interesting. I had no idea. Whenever people say they can’t see my site, I think it’s because of the cusswords I use throughout.

Michelle Tam: {laughs}

Juli Bauer: But I use asterisks, so it’s not even the full word. But who knows. Maybe.

Michelle Tam: I don’t know. Who knows. And I was like; why are you looking at it at work? Maybe you should look at it on your phone. {laughs}

Juli Bauer: {laughing} Exactly.

Michelle Tam: You can still do it at work, but do it on your phone.

Juli Bauer: Exactly. So what do you think; I know you obviously probably have thousands of posts on your website. And I kind of hate…

Michelle Tam: No. I have thousands of posts, but I don’t have thousands of recipes. You are way more prolific than I am. {laughs}

Juli Bauer: Ok. Well that’s because you were writing two of the most complicated cookbooks in the history of time. I can’t imagine. How many recipes do you have between the two of those books?

Michelle Tam: I think 300 between the two, ish. Not as many as I think there are. {laughing}

Juli Bauer: There are still a ton. A ton. And people, what you get in this cookbook. What people will see, other than just the photo by photo instructions, you get a ton of kind of comics. And your husband is the one who creates all of those, right?

Michelle Tam: Yes. Again, he is super hard working, but he’s also; he’s left brained and also right brained. So he can do analytical stuff in his real work, and then he can come home and draw super cute cartoons. Yeah.

Juli Bauer: So when you work on your website, if you have any graphics that you need, you just go to him and say, “Hey can you make this quick graphic? This is what I’m thinking.”

Michelle Tam: Yes. Totally. I’ll be like, can you have me, cartoon Michelle, say this, and have her hands like this, and her face like this. And he’s like ok. Because actually when we were working on the second cookbook; for the first cookbook, all of the cartoons he actually drew by hand. And then he had to scan them in the computer, and it was just a ton of work. So he knew for the second cookbook, if we were going to have cartoons, that he had to stream line it in a certain way. So he actually made kind of these paper doll versions of all four of us. Me and him and the two kids. Where we had all these different facial expressions. Different clothes, and different ways our hands were. And so he can kind of move like a face, and match it with a different shirt to kind of create different cartoons. Which I don’t know how he did that, but he did.

Juli Bauer: Whoa. That is insane.

Michelle Tam: I know. It’s insane!

Juli Bauer: How is it working and still working together. But on the cookbook, and then just kind of working together on the website. Have you guys run into any issues working together or has it been pretty easy going, because you guys are obviously pretty good at marriage.

Michelle Tam: {laughing}

Juli Bauer: {laughs}

Michelle Tam: Well you know, we joke that when I was working nights for 12 years, we were like ships in the night. I’d work a night, and I’d see him in the morning and stuff. And every other week, we’d see each other again. And we were like, maybe that was the secret to our marriage was that we barely saw each other.

Juli Bauer: Totally! {laughs}

Michelle Tam: {laughs} But I think we work really well together because we care passionately about things the other person doesn’t care about. So he is really set on making sure the pictures and the cartoons and the layout are just how he likes them. And when he asks me, I’m like, I don’t care. However you want to do it is cool with me. And I really care about the recipes working, and tasting good, and he doesn’t care about that part at all. And it’s really funny because sometimes we’ll be working on a recipe. And he’ll be taking pictures of everything. And I’m not ready for it to be posted. And he’ll be like; “no, stop here because I have the perfect picture.” And I’m like, no. It’s not ready. I can’t publish it yet. He’s like, don’t worry, just publish it, and if it doesn’t work, people will just blame themselves.

Juli Bauer: {laughing}

Michelle Tam: I’m like, no. It doesn’t work like that. Because I handle all the social media and the email and everything. And trust me. When things don’t work, people blame me. And they blame me in all caps.

Juli Bauer: {laughing}

Michelle Tam: So {laughs} he’s like, ok fine, you do your thing and I’ll do my thing. So I think it’s good because I trust him to do what he does, and he trusts me to do what I do, and we’re cool with how things turn out.

Juli Bauer: Yeah, that’s bad ass. Like Bill and Hayley, from Primal Palate. They can work together too. It amazes me when couples can work together and they can make it work and not drive each other completely insane. So congratulations on that feat. {laughs}

Michelle Tam: Well, thank you. But at the same time, he does. He’s not here. It’s not like I spend all day with him. He’s at work and stuff. So I don’t know how it would work if he were here and this was his full-time gig. I don’t know, maybe it would not work.

Juli Bauer: Yeah. So he’s a 9-5 Monday through Friday at work.

Michelle Tam: Well, it’s probably longer than that.

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Michelle Tam: He’s gone, he comes back at dinner time. And then he’s like, now I’m going to start my second job. And he’s just always grinding. And it makes me feel like I’m not working hard enough.

Juli Bauer: Damn, that’s crazy. That’s so much work.

Michelle Tam: It is.

Juli Bauer: But you guys work very well together, which is awesome. And now that you’re done with book tour; are you totally done with book tour, for your second book?

Michelle Tam: I have some events kind of trickling in. But most of it is done. I have some travel this weekend and on some upcoming weekends. But most of it is done. Which is nice.

Juli Bauer: So now are you kind of back to just working on the website? Working on new posts there? What’s your day to day like when you’re not on book tour or working on a cookbook?

Michelle Tam: So, day to day is I kind of try to fit everything in while the kids are at school. Or we start working when they’re asleep. But I kind of have set things I have to do. There’s always an Instagram post I’m putting up. I do Instagram stories about stuff I’m cooking. Wednesday I always have a Facebook live. So I’m always kind of prepping up until Wednesday for that. It always seems so spontaneous, but it’s not. Like, today I have one and I already cooked the dish ahead of time last night, and I have it all prepped to show this afternoon.

Juli Bauer: Totally. I don’t know how you guys do those Facebook lives. When I talked to Cassy from Fed and Fit about it she was like, they are just so much work! She was like, they’re worth it, but they’re so much work!

Michelle Tam: I think a podcast is more work.

Juli Bauer: Oh, no way. I’m in my pajamas on the couch with my do.

Michelle Tam: No it is. We kind of still have a podcast, but we put up a new episode every time our kids voice changes because it’s that long.

Juli Bauer: {laughs}

Michelle Tam: I think the Facebook live is hard in that you just need to make sure things are prepped. But then you just press play, and whatever happens happens.

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Michelle Tam: But, you know, and then there’s always set stuff I have on certain days. And I’m always responding to people emailing me and messaging me. There’s always recipe development stuff for the blog or other projects I’m working on. There’s always something.

Juli Bauer: Always something.

Michelle Tam: There’s always something.

Juli Bauer: Do you concentrate much on social media? Getting a certain amount of posts up or a certain time of day? Or do you kind of just concentrate on your website and books and that Facebook live? Or your just scheduled that you panned out for yourself.

Michelle Tam: So we are really bad about having an editorial calendar. A lot of things we do on the fly all the time. But in terms of; I really love Instagram and so I’m always, I always try to post at least one thing on the main Instagram. And then I kind of show people stuff on the Instagram stories. Facebook, we put stuff on there. But that I don’t love Facebook just because.

Juli Bauer: It’s the worst.

Michelle Tam: It can be the worst depending on many factors. {laughs}

Juli Bauer: {laughs} Yeah.

Michelle Tam: We have a guy in Phoenix who helps me schedule things on Facebook. And on Facebook, it’s mostly me sharing other people’s recipes, sharing some of my recipes, responding to people’s messages. So I’ll kind of send him stuff. I’m like, hey here are things that you can post up later. But I don’t monitor when he posts stuff. And he’ll find stuff that he knows that I’m cool with posting.

So those are kind of the ones. And Twitter, if someone tweets me, I’ll reply. And then in terms of the blog, we try to put new content up once a week. Because we know the blog is kind of the main repository and that’s kind of where people can always find us. But I feel like people aren’t going to the blog as much anymore. Some people just know me from Instagram.

Juli Bauer: Totally.

Michelle Tam: And they’re surprised I have a blog or other things going on. So it’s really interesting how people are consuming their content these days. But I still think the blog is still the core. But you have to have people reach it in different ways.

Juli Bauer: Yeah. I feel like it’s a constant change that you have to find new ways for people to find it. Since it’s more regulated with Facebook and Instagram having that algorithm, and they can’t see it. So you have to find new ways to constantly kind of put your name out there in different ways.

Michelle Tam: Right. But I don’t know how to hashtag it up or do all those things.

Juli Bauer: Me neither.

Michelle Tam: And there are certain times when I’m like, Oh, I think this post will do really well, and it doesn’t. And then something that’s super ugly that I just put will get tons of likes. So it’s a weird; I’m not sure how it works. But at the same time, I’m happy to kind of try to figure out how it works. Right? Because it’s a free tool. So I think instead of; obviously I could just complain and say, oh it sucks. They’re doing this, this, and this. But I’m like, at the same time, I’m not paying for it.

Juli Bauer: I know.

Michelle Tam: And I know they’re trying to make it as useful and interesting for the people who use it. So I’ve got to figure out how to do that.

Juli Bauer: I know. It’s constantly changing.

Michelle Tam: But that’s why; I don’t do Pinterest because that doesn’t really interest me. I know some people love Pinterest, but I’m like; eh. I don’t really know how to use it. And I know that I could be a total time suck. So instead I would rather concentrate on stuff that I actually really like, like Instagram.

Juli Bauer: Yeah, yeah. Absolutely. Well I want to ask you a few questions from readers before I let you go. So I just picked a handful of stuff that we haven’t covered. And this lovely person, they want to know; and I hate this question always because I can never answer it. But, do you have a favorite couple of recipes from your newest cookbook?

Michelle Tam: Ah. I do have a favorite recipe. So I think my all-purpose stir-fry sauce I love, just because it’s so versatile, and it literally takes just a couple of minutes to shake together in a mason jar. And then you can keep it in the fridge for, I say 2 weeks, but you’ll probably be out of it just in a few days. But you can use it for stir fry. And if you don’t know how to make a stir fry, I have a beef and asparagus stir fry step by step recipe in the book, so it can show you kind of the steps to do it, and you can sub in whatever you have.

You can use it as a sauce in paper wrapped chicken, which is another recipe in the cookbook. You can use it as a salad dressing, because I show you how you can use it in this cold ramen salad that’s on the blog. And if you have an Instant Pot, if you just use half a cup of the all-purpose stir fry sauce with any braising cut; pork shoulder or chicken thighs, or chuck roast, you will have a really fantastic stew without thinking about it. So I like that one just because it’s so versatile. And I don’t really have an excuse that I have nothing to cook if I have that sauce.

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Michelle Tam: And then I also love the chicken and shrimp laap just because it’s fast and easy and the kids will eat it. And I love the desserts. And I don’t normally do desserts, so the ones that are in the cookbook, I tested many, many, many times. {laughs} And I like them.

Juli Bauer: Now I totally want to try that sauce. That sounds awesome. And use it in the Instant Pot.

Michelle Tam: Yeah. If you’re going to just, it literally takes no time. And if you just make one time, you can use it a million different ways.

Juli Bauer: That’s awesome. And I think that kind of leads into this other question. This person asks, “What’s Michelle’s Ride or Die kitchen tools?” She says, “Also please let her know that her Yankee pot roast is the bomb!”

Michelle Tam: {laughs} Oh, well you know I just did an Instant Pot version of that recipe.

Juli Bauer: Oh sweet.

Michelle Tam: I think my favorite kitchen gadget is probably the Instant Pot. They’re not a sponsor. I just think an electric pressure cooker is really amazing.

Juli Bauer: Yeah. You have done so many recipes with the Instant Pot. When I didn’t know how to use my Instant Pot when I first got it, I went and looked at your; not deviled eggs, but steamed eggs, just to see how to work it. Because you had steps by steps, to make sure you don’t blow your house up. Because it’s so scary and terrifying when you first get an Instant Pot. But you have so many different Instant Pot recipes.

Michelle Tam: But once you use it, you’re like, “Oh my gosh, this power is amazing!” You know what I mean?

Juli Bauer: Yeah, it’s awesome.

Michelle Tam: You can do so many things, and it frees you up. And I feel like it delivers on the promise that everyone thinks a slow cooker will do. Right? I think everyone who has a slow cooker is like, “I can dump all this crap in, and when I come home 10-12 hours later, it will be delicious.” And it’s never that way. It’s always watery, overcooked, powdery, gross. Right?

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Michelle Tam: But I feel with an instant pot, because you’re cooking under pressure, and you can cook it fast and keep it warm, it does taste delicious. And that’s what they use on Top Chef and all these cooking shows. These cooking contests. They break out a pressure cooker when they want to make a stew and something fast and delicious. And I was like, if they’re using it, we should use it at home.

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Michelle Tam: And then what else do I love? I love my cast iron skillet.

Juli Bauer: Always.

Michelle Tam: I think my Instant Pot is probably my favorite thing.

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Michelle Tam: And I love tongs. I think those are really easy to flip things and grab things.

Juli Bauer: Shred things. And here, I have two more questions for you. The first one, she asks, “I notice you check your blood sugar a lot. Do you follow the keto diet? How has this changed your life more since going paleo?” Because I remember seeing some videos of you checking your blood sugar. What has that kind of introduced you do and a little better understanding of your own body?

Michelle Tam: I don’t really check my blood sugar so much anymore. I think when I got a glucose monitor after I read Robb Wolf’s newest book, Wired to Eat, because he recommends people get one just to see how they respond to certain carbs and certain dishes. And everybody is different. And the only way for you to really know how you react to certain foods is to test your blood sugar.

And at first I didn’t want to because I was like, I don’t want to prick my finger. But then I think one of my friends was like, come on. Stop being such a baby. Go and check it so you’ll know. And it was really eye opening for me. Because there were certain things that I thought I could eat all the time. I thought I could eat white rice and rice noodles, because I’m Chinese. And I’m like, oh my people have been eating this for thousands of years. I’m sure I’m genetically made to eat white rice. But when I check my blood sugar two hours after having a bowl of Pho, not only was I falling asleep, when I checked my blood sugar it was still 200-something. Which is really high. It should drop back down to 100 or whatever your normal is, but it doesn’t.

And I know I have type 2 diabetes in my family, and my 23andMe told me I was predisposed to get type 2 diabetes. But until I checked my blood sugar, I was like; oh. Maybe I shouldn’t eat white rice so much.

Juli Bauer: Interesting.

Michelle Tam: Or if I do, I have make sure it’s a small portion and I eat protein and fat along with it. I don’t eat keto. I probably eat a low-carb diet, just by default. And I think I feel better when I eat lower carb. But I haven’t done full on keto. I think to do keto you have to really make sure you do it correctly. Because you could eat certain things and it could throw you out of ketosis.

Juli Bauer: Totally.

Michelle Tam: And I think a lot of the counting; counting calories and all that obsessive stuff that I was doing before. Anything that reminds me of that, I don’t like. {laughs}

Juli Bauer: Yeah, for sure.

Michelle Tam: But I know that keto works for a lot of people. And for a lot of people, nothing else has worked and keto has worked great. But I am a strong believer that everybody is different. And you have to find what works best for you.

Juli Bauer: Yeah, absolutely. And this last question, before I let you go and move on with your day and get prepped and ready for your Facebook live. This one is another one from a reader, and she says, “My question is how she works exercise into her life and maintains balance, especially while traveling.” So what are you doing for exercise now? Are you still kind of doing CrossFit? Do you guys workout at your house? What do you do?

Michelle Tam: Our house is totally outfitted. Our garage has all sorts of rogue stuff and we have, what is that? That assault back.

Juli Bauer: Yeah, the Airdyne.

Michelle Tam: Yes. Ok. So we have that and a rowing machine. So we have all the things. I have a guy that comes out and he makes me do kind of old lady CrossFit. It’s like Olympic lifting, and we’ll do some sort of metabolic conditioning at the end, but no throwing any weight around at the end when I do metabolic conditioning. Because I’ve told him, I just want to be stronger but I don’t want to get hurt. Because I’m old.

Juli Bauer: Yeah. {laughs}

Michelle Tam: And he’s been really good about that. And I also do; there’s this book called the Happy Body that I found out about on the Tim Ferris podcast, which sounds all kooky and stuff. And the book itself is kind of kooky. But it’s basically doing mobility stuff every day. And I was like, oh this is good. Because I really need to do more mobility stuff that I can ensure that I can even lift properly, right?

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Michelle Tam: So those are the kind of things. And I do long walks. And I run with my kid to school when we’re late. {laughs}

Juli Bauer: {laughing} That’s awesome. Well I’m glad you have the stuff at home that you can do because that makes it so much easier. I think a lot of people are kind of turning towards more garaged gyms and things they can do at home because lives are so damn busy.

Michelle Tam: Yeah. And there’s definitely; there’s all these body weight things that I can totally work on. Like, I can’t do a pistol. And you don’t need any equipment for that, you know what I mean?

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Michelle Tam: There’s definitely things where I’m like; I’ve got to work on my pushups, and I’ve got to work on planks. I’ve got to squat more. And you don’t need, there’s no excuse not to do some of those things.

Juli Bauer: Totally. That’s awesome. Well will you tell everyone where they can find you and your cookbooks? And give us all information about you. I think it’s pretty easy to find you nowadays, because your names are pretty much the same all the way around.

Michelle Tam: Yeah. Nom Nom Paleo is where you can find all my stuff. Or most social media, I’m Nom Nom Paleo. Except for Snapchat, because someone stole it, and they don’t let you get it back. But now I’m not on Snapchat anymore {laughs}.

Juli Bauer: Yeah, I’m not either.

Michelle Tam: I do Instagram stories.

Juli Bauer: Exactly.

Michelle Tam: I know. And I was so excited because it was so cool. And then Instagram stories came, and I’m like, I’m just going to stay here. I don’t have to convince anyone to adopt a new platform. But yeah, my books are sold wherever books are sold.

Juli Bauer: And your first cookbook is Nom Nom Paleo, and your second one is Ready or Not, correct?

Michelle Tam: Yes.

Juli Bauer: Ok, perfect.

Michelle Tam: One is red, one is yellow.

Juli Bauer: Yes. And they are bright colors. They are beautiful. Everyone will love them, I can promise you that. So stay on the line, Michelle. Thank you so much for coming. You’re the best. Seriously, if people haven’t checked you out. You’re so hilarious. And I appreciate you so much for coming on because you’re a badass chick that has motivated me from the start of paleo.

Michelle Tam: Thank you. I feel the same way about you. Thank you.

Juli Bauer: Ah, you’re such a gem. Ok stay on the line, I’ll talk to you guys later. Bye-bye!

In this podcast, I’m chatting with the great Michelle Tam from! Michelle’s blog was one of the first paleo blogs I came across when I started paleo and she continues to crush it in the blog and cookbook world. […] In this podcast, I’m chatting with the great Michelle Tam from! Michelle’s blog was one of the first paleo blogs I came across when I started paleo and she continues to crush it in the blog and cookbook world. […] PaleOMG Uncensored yes 59:24
Mike from ButcherBox – Episode 52: PaleOMG Uncensored Podcast Sat, 30 Sep 2017 13:09:23 +0000 18 So excited to chat with the owner and creator of ButcherBox! I have been receiving ButcherBox since March and have absolutely loved it. I constantly have meat in my freezer and everything always tastes amazing. Hope you guys enjoy his story! ____________ Big […] So excited to chat with the owner and creator of ButcherBox! I have been receiving ButcherBox since March and have absolutely loved it. I constantly have meat in my freezer and everything always tastes amazing. Hope you guys enjoy his story!


Big Thank You to Our Sponsor – ButcherBox

ButcherBox sources and delivers the best quality grass-fed, grass-finished, antibiotic and hormone-free, pasture-raised beef, chicken and pork straight to your doorstep. And getting your ButcherBox is super easy – just select your box, customize it to your liking, and then set your schedule of how often you want to receive your ButcherBox. They offer free shipping to the contiguous 48 states and each classic box is filled with 8-11 pounds of meat. They also just launched their custom box so customers can actually choose everything that comes in their box! And right now, PaleOMG Uncensored listeners can get $10 off their first order PLUS 2 FREE grass fed, grass finished ribeyes! Click here to receive this special offer!


Support the podcast by clicking the Subscribe button on iTunes and please a review only if you love the podcast! There is enough negativity in this world, don’t spread more. I love hearing about what YOU want me to talk about so feel free to leave on comment here or on social media with topics you’d like me to cover! And don’t forget, some posts have affiliate links which I may be compensated from. This compensation helps with keeping this blog and up and running! Thank you so much for your support, you guys are amazing!


Episode 52 Transcription!

I am so excited to tell you about this month’s sponsor, because it’s something I use in my daily life and have loved so much that I’ve talked about it on my blog and Instagram a ton. If you’ve ever had a hard time finding high quality, grass-fed, and pasture raised meat at the grocery store, ButcherBox is here to make the experience so much easier.

Not only does ButcherBox source the best quality beef, chicken, and pork that is humanely raised and free of antibiotics and hormones, but they also deliver straight to your doorstep. They take any of the guess work out of finding high quality meat at the grocery store, and instead all you have to do is open your box filled with dry ice and find different cuts of meat.

The process is super easy. All you have to do is select your box, customize it to your liking, and then set your schedule of how often you want to receive your ButcherBox. They offer free shipping to the contiguous 48 states and each classic box is filled with 8 to 11 pounds of meat.

They also launched their custom box, so customers can actually choose everything that comes in their box. Right now, PaleOMG Uncensored listeners can get $10 off their first order; plus two free grass-fed grass-finished ribeyes. I’ve loved all of the different cuts of meat I’ve tried. I’ve heard their breakfast sausage is amazing. I’ve loved their thinly sliced beef and their ground beef. I use it almost every day. And you guys can now try it, too.

All you have to do is go to and pick the perfect box for you. That’s it. and you’ll get $10 off your first order plus 2 free ribeyes. And since I love ButcherBox so much, I asked the creator, Mike Salguero, to come on the podcast and share his story of creating such an amazing business. I hope you guys enjoy.

This is Juli Bauer from PaleOMG and you are listening to PaleOMG Uncensored.

Juli Bauer: Hey everyone! Thank you guys for coming on to PaleOMG Uncensored, another episode. I have no idea what number we’re on at this point. Because today I have a very special guest. His name is Mike; how do you say your last name, Mike?

Mike Salguero: Salguero.

Juli Bauer: Ok, that’s how I was going to say it. So I’m glad I wouldn’t have butchered that. But we have Mike Salguero from ButcherBox on today. I’m very excited to talk to him because I have been using ButcherBox for I would say 6 to 8 months at this point, and have absolutely loved all of the products. So we’re going to talk about how the company came to be. I talk about a special discount at the beginning of this episode, anyway.

So let’s talk about ButcherBox. So Mike; thank you so much for being on today.

Mike Salguero: Yeah, thank you.

Juli Bauer: I really appreciate you talking the time out of your busy schedule. So will you just give people listening just kind of a tour of you. Who you are, how you came into ButcherBox, and just a little background about the company and how you started this business; I think starting a family at the same time.

Mike Salguero: Yeah. Sure. So I live in Boston. That’s where our company, ButcherBox, is headquartered. And I got into grass-fed beef really through different diets. So I was looking at your blog. I was looking at Whole30. And diet after diet would say you should eat grass-fed beef. And I couldn’t really find a great way to buy grass-fed beef. At the time, my wife was pregnant with our first child. I started becoming obsessed with, “Alright, let me find some really amazing beef.”

I ended up meeting a farmer who was in New York, and used to sell what they call cow shares. Like an eighth of a cow or a quarter of a cow, where that’s like a trash bag of meat. And they would deliver it to my house. And it never fit into my tiny city apartment, into the freezer. And it was just like; this doesn’t make sense. This doesn’t work.

So over the course of about a year and a half, I had bought three different times, I bought more and more of this farmer’s cow share, and I was selling it off to my friends. Because they were like, “These steaks are amazing, can we get more.” And then it dawned on me one day; maybe this could be something that’s delivered to people’s door, and maybe we could make grass-fed beef accessible. Because everyone I talked to about grass-fed beef was like, “I love the idea of grass-fed beef, but I don’t know how to find grass-fed beef.”

So I then became obsessed with, how do you make that happen? How do you ship nationwide? How do you ship frozen? I ended up meeting a guy who used to work at Omaha Steaks who opened up a bunch of doors. Omaha Steaks doesn’t do grass-fed, but it’s kind of the same thing in terms of how you cut it, and package it, and ship it. And then we were off to the races.

We started with a Kickstarter campaign, because I still wasn’t convinced that there was a real market. So I took $10,000 out of my savings account to buy some meat, and create a video, and push Kickstarter forward. We went out to raise $25,000. Where you’re really doing pre-sales; so you’re selling your product. And I think day one we raised like $40,000. And then by the end of the campaign, which was 30 days, we did $225,000. So it was like; wow. There’s definitely a market here.

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Mike Salguero: We definitely struck a nerve. And that was two years ago. So we finished our Kickstarter at the end of September two years ago. And we’ve been growing ever since. It’s been quite a wild ride. It’s been incredibly informative. And really fun to build a company where we’re involved in something that’s so important to so many families. Which is meals and dinner and eating well. It’s just been really awesome to be a part of it.

Juli Bauer: So do you have another job? Or did you have another job when you were starting ButcherBox?

Mike Salguero: No. I had actually just left; before ButcherBox I ran a company called which connected makers of things custom. So jewelry, furniture were two main ones. We were a marketplace that did that. We had raised a bunch of venture capital, and played the whole kind of startup game. So I left that. My cofounder still runs it.

I started ButcherBox as my pastime hobby type thing that I was going to do while pursuing something else. And then it became pretty apparent, pretty fast that, oh this is the thing. This is what I’m going to spend my time on. It was more of a passion play to start with, and I didn’t really believe that it could be a big business. And then it was like; whoa. Every point of validation was, not only could this be a big business, but also we’re solving a real need that people have. Which is trying to eat healthier, trying to put their dollars towards better raised quality meat. And for us to be able to do that was just like; this is it. So since then I’ve focused on just this.

Juli Bauer: So, will you tell people kind of how you go about sourcing your meat? Did you start just wanting to do grass-fed grass-finished beef? And then you were like, maybe we can do chicken and pork. Or was that the goal from the beginning, was to do all three?

Mike Salguero: No, yeah. Totally wasn’t the goal to do all three. We started saying 100% grass-fed grass-finished. And I’ll probably use 100% grass-fed and grass-fed grass-finished. They’re the same; they’re interchangeable. We can get into grass-fed grain-finished in the future. Which is not the same.

So when I started, it was just we’re going to do a monthly box of 100% grass-fed beef. And then we started talking to customers and they’re like; “Yeah, that much beef. I don’t eat that much beef every month. So can we do it every couple of months? Every three months? And by the way, I have a real problem ordering pork.” Or, “I have a real problem ordering chicken. What should I be looking for for these things?”

So it became pretty apparent quickly that we needed to be an all three protein. So we offer pasture raised, heritage breed pork, 100% grass-fed beef, and then organic, free-range chicken. And then we have specials for stuff like lamb, fish, or turkeys for Thanksgiving. Stuff like that.

Juli Bauer: Oh, I didn’t know that.

Mike Salguero: Yep. That will be coming up soon. And what we want to do is essentially make it really easy for you to get this stuff delivered to your house, rather than having to go to a butcher and try to read labels or understand where things are from.

As far as sourcing is concerned; our baseline mission is we only; or our position, rather. We only want to serve our members meat from animals that were raised as nature intended. So what does that mean? That basically means a cow was put on earth to eat grass. Unfortunately, what’s happening in this country is most cows now end up in a feedlot being fed corn. And even within grass-fed, there are people who are playing around with what they’re feeding cows to make them grow better. To make them more consistent. To make them taste more like a corn-fed cow. And that’s not how we roll. We want things that are fed the way that nature intended.

So when we do sourcing, a lot of what we’re looking at is we’re vetting the farms. We’re vetting humane treatment to animals. So we’re working on getting an overall certification for our company. Because all of our products currently are humane certified. So we’re looking for that. We’re definitely looking for never-ever antibiotics and hormones. Meaning, if the cow got sick, it will be given an antibiotic, but it will be taken out of the program. We will never cut a piece of meat that was given an antibiotic, was given hormones.

And then, you know, we’re kind of looking at capacity. We’ve grown very quickly, so we’re making sure that whether it’s a farm or it’s a collective. So a lot of these farmers will sell through a collective, which will kind of represent them and a bunch of other farmers and sell directly to us. It’s a fine balance of finding the right places, doing the right thing, and also making sure that we have a product that tastes great.

Chicken, I think, is a pretty interesting story. When we started, we were doing pasture-raised chickens, and our customers didn’t really like it. So I think a pasture-raised chicken tastes different. The meat is tougher. Breasts are smaller. Legs are tougher. So we do free-range organic. Which is as close as we can get to pastured without being pastured. And we’re still not as far along on our chicken as I’d like to be. I think there’s got to be a pasture raised bird out there that tastes more like a conventional chicken that everyone is used to.

So it’s an ongoing; we have spent the most time and money and effort making sure that we have an amazing product that’s safe to eat. That checks off all the boxes. Because we know that that’s what our customers are looking for, and what’s really important to them.

Juli Bauer: So how many different farms do you work with, and how do you find these farms when you’re trying to find? I’m sure you’re getting new customers on a regular basis. So then you’re constantly trying to find new farms to source this meat from. So how do you find it? And do you go out to these farms to try to find the meat? Or do you have them sent to you so you can taste it and see what it’s like beforehand? How do you balance all of that? I can’t imagine doing all that. That’s insane.

Mike Salguero: {laughs} Yeah, so. The taste testing is the good part. That’s the fun part.

Juli Bauer: Yeah. {laughs}

Mike Salguero: Yeah. So we work with hundreds of farms. And we haven’t gone to see every single farm. And as we’ve grown, what we’ve done; we started with individual farms. And then these farmers were like; “I can’t actually make this supply. But I’m part of the Wisconsin Farmer Association, or farmer co-op. Why don’t you talk to them about purchasing from more people than just me?” So then we would go into a larger co-op and purchase from them. And they’re the ones kind of making sure the farmers meet all their protocols and standards and go out to the farm and make sure things are of proper standards and whatnot.

So, we do buy from a number of individual farms, as well. And frankly a lot of that has been happenstance. Like, somebody introduced me to John Arbuckle, who is Singing Prairie. He makes an amazing pork product. And now he does all of our breakfast sausage. Which is incredible. It tastes amazing. People love it.

We’ve just grown and grown and been able to focus on one product, and he’s been able to grow his business pretty tremendously off of our orders on a monthly basis, because we’re predictable and whatnot.

In other cases, when you’re talking about pork tenderloin, or a beef tenderloin. Like a filet. There’s only; on a pig, there’s only about 4 pounds of pork tenderloin that comes off a pig. So you’re talking about a lot of pigs in order to meet a monthly demand if we were going to put pork tenderloin in a box. So in that case, you’re dealing with a collective that’s able to balance across all of the different farms that they’re working with.

The good thing about collectives, too, is that they have people on staff who go out to these farms on a regular basis. Oftentimes unannounced. It’s much harder for us to be able to do that. It would be hard for us to show up and say, “Hey. Show us those feedbags. Are those actually free of animal byproducts?” So we found it to be more effective and better for us to leverage buyers in collectives that are making sure that we adhere to the protocols that are important to us.

Juli Bauer: Ok. Well I want to get a little bit more into the business. But before; I think this is just an important piece that I probably should have led with. But can you talk about why grass-fed and pasture raised and grass-finished. Grass-fed versus grain-finished. Can you talk about why this is so important, and why people should be eating grass-fed versus the normal meat that you get at the everyday grocery store?

Mike Salguero: Yeah, sure. Very important for people to pay attention here. So basically 98% of the beef consumed in the United States is grass-fed, corn-finished or grain-finished. So every cow starts out exactly the same. 6 months it’s cow-calf. So it’s the mother with its baby. And then about 12 months of weaning off of milk, and just eating grass in a field. And then 98% of the cows go to a feedlot. Some go to a smaller feedlot, but oftentimes these feedlots have hundreds of thousands of animals. And they’re all being fed corn, grains, silage. Basically whatever possible to get them as fat as possible, or to gain as much weight as possible, as quick as possible. Oftentimes they’re given hormones or antibiotics to help speed that along.

It’s incredibly; just from whatever perspective you want to look at. If you want to look at the cow’s perspective. They’re eating something that’s foreign to their body. Oftentimes have issues with stomach issues. Oftentimes get sick from being near other animals. It’s a very stressful environment. It’s not a place where they’re really happy, and eating and doing whatever they want.

Versus grass-fed, or 100% grass-fed. Where after those 18 months of cow-calf and being out on a field, they basically leave them on the field for another year. So the cow is only eating grass. And gets up to its natural weight, at which point it ends up basically at the time that it’s slaughtered, it has never eaten anything other than grass.

So that is better for the environment. There’s lots of stuff about carbon emissions and the fact that if we had more grass, more cows eating grass, it would be much better for the environment. It’s much better for the cow. It’s what they were designed to eat. It is way less stressful. They’re not around a whole bunch of animals. They’re not around their heard. And it’s, in my opinion, a much tastier product.

On the health side, there’s a whole bunch of health benefits to grass-fed beef. Vitamins, fats, minerals, that are way better for the human body rather than grass-fed. So I think lots of people who are following a paleo diet know to avoid grains, or are avoiding eating certain things because it’s inflammatory. Because it doesn’t work well with their digestive system. So it seems; it’s pretty easy for people to grok why it would be important to not eat animals that have a similar experience.

So, grass-fed is becoming more and more popular. Which is great. Our vision for the world is that grass-fed beef is accessible to everybody. We have a lot of work to be able to do that. But the meat industry, these feedlots, kind of the way the system works, it’s all set up to; it’s just really hard for the farmer to choose to raise their cow just on grass. And the system is kind of set up to make that even more difficult. So there’s a lot of changes that need to be made. And we’re hoping to do our part to help move those changes along. And get the customer something that they’re looking for, and find hard to find right now.

Juli Bauer: And can you kind of talk about pork? Because I feel like beef is talked about all the time. Grass-fed, grass-finished. They are like those trigger words. Everybody knows those words if you’re kind of in the paleo community. But I think; even with chicken. People are understanding chicken a little bit more. But I feel like pork is still just unknown. People don’t know what to look for when they’re looking for pork at their grocery store. So can you explain how chickens are usually brought up versus what you’re sourcing?

Mike Salguero: Yeah. So, if you think about a pig. The way that pigs grew up with humans, if you think about a village. Let’s go back to the 1400s. So you have a village. Generally the cows are out, way out in the fields, eating grass. And the pigs are in town eating food scraps. So what’s happened over the past 500 years is that pigs, as they became domesticated and grew closer to humans, have actually; one, their body and their organs are very similar to a humans. They oftentimes dissect pigs in anatomy class. Two, their jaws, like their mouth, looks like a human. And their brain has adapted so that they know whether what they’re eating is poisonous or not, because when somebody threw their trash into a heap 500 years ago, the smart pigs were the ones that didn’t eat the poison. So those have, over time, gotten smarter and smarter and smarter and smarter.

And why that’s important is because the life of a pig is one of the most important in terms of humane treatment and in terms of letting them be a part of; do what they want to do and what their body is designed for, rather than how a traditional pig is raised.

So a traditional pig; and we’re talking a conventional pig. Is in a concentrated feeding operation. So we’re talking about a barn where the pig has very little room. Oftentimes they can’t even turn around. They are in metal crates. And they go; they go crazy. They literally freak out because they’re just confined. That’s not what their body was made for. So there’s tons of stress. It’s just not a very good situation. And then they pump them with antibiotics because pigs actually; because they resemble a human so much, they can get diseases which transfer over. So there’s lots of antibiotics, etc.

So just from the humane treatment side, something like a pasture-raised program. Or at the very least, if you’re listeners are looking to; “Whoa, that’s scary. Let me do something better.” If you look for certified humane or humane treatment; those are good things to, at the very least, look for.

So pigs eat a lot of corn. Even pigs that are raised in pasture. So oftentimes, like our pigs, are out in the pasture. So they’re eating grass. But they’re also eating a tremendous amount of grains and corn. And that’s just what their body is designed for; unlike the cows.

But a pasture-raised pig, which is what ours are, essentially they’re out in a field. Mothers are able to have their piglets out in the field, or in these little huts that are built rather than in these cages. They’re able to be social. Pigs are a very social animal, but in large feeding operations they’re not able to be. And a lot of it has to do with the stress, antibiotics, and in the pasture-raised program you’re not getting any of that stuff.

I really feel like, at least for me. This is my own thing. On the pig side; obviously, I want to avoid antibiotics, so there’s that. But then it’s really, to me, it comes down to the way their brain has adapted and thinking about not eating something that was raised in a way that is not great for the animal.

Being in a meat company, there is the reality that everything has to die. And you want to make sure that they live their life the best way possible. And also that the whole processing of that animal was done in the best way possible. And that’s really important to me, and something that I know is important to our members. So it’s something that we spend a lot of time making sure is up to snuff as well. Does that help?

Juli Bauer: Yeah, that’s so interesting. I’m so excited you talk about that stuff. Because we are just; most of us, just don’t know about that stuff. I don’t know what a feed lot looks like, other than maybe what PETA put out online, that type of stuff.

Mike Salguero: Yep.

Juli Bauer: So it’s just really interesting. Especially, I had no idea about pigs, their being social animals. Anything like that. Most of us would not know that.

Mike Salguero: Yeah, it’s fascinating.

Juli Bauer: That’s super fascinating. So, as you’ve come into this business, and you’ve added chicken, and beef, and pork, and you’ve really grown this business from the start. What are some of the biggest challenges you’ve run into; as a business owner, as an entrepreneur, and how have you dealt with those challenges along the way?

Mike Salguero: That’s a great question. I mean, aside from; so our business. We’ll just take our business for a second. We’ve dealt with a lot of challenges in terms of shipping a frozen box of meat into multiple places across the country. Once it leaves our facility, we can make sure it’s packed as well as we can, but then we’re kind of at the mercy of UPS and FedEx.

Juli Bauer: Big time.

Mike Salguero: And they mess up every once in a while. So it’s, how do we build a member-obsessed organization, where if somebody calls in and complains, and we’re like, “No problem we’ll take care of it.” How do we solve people’s problems, and all that stuff? Which is big, and hairy, and hard. We have a lot of people who have a lot of experience in those areas, because it’s the place where experiences; buying meat and shipping boxes and making sure that that’s done well is critical to having an amazing experience for our members.

So that’s been hard. We had to learn the hard way. You get going; and it’s a few hundred boxes, then it’s a few thousand boxes. And it’s like; oh geeze, we’ve got to make changes and figure out what’s working here.

As far as the business itself goes, I think the hardest part has been just; I’ve learned. I didn’t know anything about pigs before I got into this. I literally knew; I ate bacon, thought it tasted good. Probably had only had a pork chop, and that was it. It’s like, making sure that we’re doing is what’s best for our customer while also learning on the fly has been interesting and challenging. Especially for me. I mean, I love it. I love that I get to learn so much about meat. Which is so important. But I sometimes have trouble with; what’s the right call to make here, because we want to do what’s best for everyone involved.

As far as the company goes, I think the hardest part is, a company, when you’re small, it’s very much about; I have this analogy of, when you start a company it’s like hacking through the jungle with machetes. And basically, you just find people who can hack a machete all day long. You’re like; “Here’s a machete, go hack!” And eventually, you get to a dirt road. And you’re like; “Do any of you guys know how to drive a car?”

Juli Bauer: {laughs}

Mike Salguero: Because your machete swinging skills are great, but I don’t know if I trust you behind a car. And that’s the big change that happens in companies. Trying to train your staff, and trying to get people up the curve so they can make the leap from small company into larger company. And that’s really hard to do. And something I think we’ve done pretty well this time around, versus my last company where I think I didn’t do that well. I didn’t really recognize that that was going to be an issue until it was.

Juli Bauer: How many people work for you at this point? Work for ButcherBox; other than, obviously, all of your small farms that you’re sourcing from.

Mike Salguero: We don’t have the farmers, the cutters. So after the animal is processed, it goes to a cutter who cuts it into a 10-ounce pork chop, or whatever. A 6-ounce filet. And then they freeze it, and then those get shipped to distribution facilities. None of that; we don’t have staff for any of that.

Outside of that, we have 50 fulltime people working for us right now.

Juli Bauer: And are you planning to grow bigger than that, or do you feel comfortable where it’s at right now?

Mike Salguero: We have a couple of positions that are open in email marketing and analytics. But we feel pretty good. The place where we’ve grown a lot is customer service. So actually, of the 50, I think it’s like 18 are customer service. And mainly because we’re trying to overinvest in making sure every customer has an amazing experience. So I don’t know how big that will be. I imagine we’ll get efficiencies at some point. But at this point it doesn’t matter. What we want is to be a resource. So if you have any question on how to cook it. If you have any question about your order. I want responses immediately, and I want people to feel like they get the level of service that they would require from a company like ours.

Juli Bauer: I think customer service is so important. Because just based on me working with different customer service, I completely go back to that company or that brand over and over based on the customer service.

Mike Salguero: Totally.

Juli Bauer: I think if anything a business can do, if their customer service is awesome then you’re going to keep going back. Even if they mess up in something, you’ll want to work with them continuously.

Mike Salguero: Yeah. There’s this whole thing. And this is a part where I’m obsessed with now. We’re not at a size and we’re able to really tackle it. But the experience of your customer is the most important thing. What does it feel like when they receive their box? What does opening it feel like? When they call, how fast does someone get on the phone? How friendly are they? It’s all about that experience.

Even if a box arrives late, but it’s still cold and it’s still good to go. People are willing to forgive a lot if they have a great experience. But it’s all about making sure that that experience is as perfect as possible. And I think there are a lot of online companies that do a really good job of that. Zappos is the one everyone talks about. So fortunately, we have some good models to look at. But it’s certainly something we just want to make sure that we build out an amazing, incredible experience for our customers.

Juli Bauer: Will you walk people kind of through the process of getting their first ButcherBox. Where do you ship to? What kind of different box options do you have? Can you personalize? Just kind of walk people through the process of getting their first ButcherBox.

Mike Salguero: Yeah. So right now we ship to the lower 48 states. So any state, any address we’ll ship to. So we have now five options. You can buy a monthly box or every other month, depending on how much meat you eat. And you can do all beef; beef, chicken, pork, which is our most popular; beef, chicken; beef, pork. And we’ve just launched a custom box where you essentially can go in and choose 6 different cuts of pretty much anything you want. So some people are like, “I only want chicken.” And just get chicken breast, and do that. Or some other people have mix and match.

We actually launched the custom box; when we started, we were just curated. So if you’re in the beef, chicken, pork box, we send you what we think you’ll like. Which works really great for some people. We include recipes inside. Some people love that. They love the experience of opening and not knowing what’s going to be inside. But we found a lot of our customers didn’t like that.

And we also found, which is interesting, is a lot of it came down to access. So if you live in a rural community and you can’t find this product otherwise, that seemed to be the person who most wanted to choose 2 pounds of ground beef, because they want to make sure they can cook those burgers this weekend. Or choose the tenderloin. Or choose whatever they were choosing. So we launched a custom option to help those people have the experience that they want to have with us.

So those are the options. And then you can do add-ons, as well. So what we try to do with add-ons is basically pass on really great deals to our members. So once you’ve purchases, you can always add stuff to your box. Whether that’s bacon, or that’s more ground beef, or more pork chops. I think we have 25 different add-ons that you can put in your box. And those can come on a monthly basis afterwards.

Juli Bauer: That’s awesome.

Mike Salguero: So that’s pretty much it. And we try to take a lot of the guesswork out of it. We try to make it as easy as possible to just click on the button and get started.

Juli Bauer: So you said you’re going to have; I don’t know if you’ve done this in the past, since I haven’t worked with you for more than 6 to 8 months. But have you done shipments in the past where you did turkeys, like around Thanksgiving?

Mike Salguero: Oh yeah.

Juli Bauer: Or fish.

Mike Salguero: Yep.

Juli Bauer: So how often do you add those other items in, and what are they?

Mike Salguero: So we’re definitely gearing up for the holidays because that’s the time where people are really looking for the large roasts, or they’re looking for the turkeys. So we’re going to do a big turkey push. We’ll probably do duck. We’re going to do lamb. We’re going to do some large beef roasts, like a rib roast.

Juli Bauer: Oh, cool.

Mike Salguero: I think we’ll probably do a rib roast. So those, for our members, will be offered at a really great price. Like, better than you can get in the store. And you’ll know that it’s the same quality that you’ve known and loved from ButcherBox. We have done turkeys twice now; two years in a row we’ve done turkeys. Supermarkets never make money on turkeys. They’re always like, it’s a loyalty thing. And it’s the same for us. We’re not looking to make a lot of money on turkeys. We’re just looking to continue to be your butcher. So if everyone is like, “I need a turkey for Thanksgiving.” Then they can say, “I got it from ButcherBox.” That’s better for us. We want to just continue being the leader source for meat.

We’ll be launching; I think in a week or two, we’ll be launching our holiday menu and plan. Make sure the people know well in advance where they can get great quality stuff.

Juli Bauer: Do you guys have a newsletter, or do you send out emails, or do you just have this on your website whenever any of these specialty products come in?

Mike Salguero: Yeah, we do. You can go to our home page and just enter in your email, and get newsletters and offers and specials and stuff like that. We’ll definitely be broadcasting that pretty wide. Maybe we can do something with you. But certainly we’ll make it known that what we’re doing and the types of products that we’re going to be offering.

Juli Bauer: Yeah. Because I had one of those questions. I think I had maybe one or two. And someone was asking if you were going to add fish to kind of the normal. Would you ever do that? Expanding into wild caught salmon or any of those options?

Mike Salguero: Yes. So we are looking into salmon for sure. I think we’ll probably start with just salmon. We might do one other fish. But we have a lot of people who are asking for fish. And it’s certainly something that we want to offer. We haven’t found a product that we’re super thrilled with yet. So that’s been the biggest hold up. But certainly it’s coming.

Juli Bauer: Do you guys hope to ship outside of the US? Do you ever hope to ship to Canada? Is that kind of a goal, like farther places? Or is it good to stay in the US because shipping, I’m sure, is just a freaking nightmare.

Mike Salguero: {laughs} Shipping is a freaking nightmare.

Juli Bauer: Seriously, I can’t imagine dealing with shipping. And then everyone blames it on you, when you’re like, “I shipped it out the same time I do every time.” I can’t imagine. That would be such a pain in the ass.

Mike Salguero: I’ve been told the only thing that’s more of a pain in the ass than shipping is getting meat over the border, in Canada.

Juli Bauer: Interesting.

Mike Salguero: So we want to do it. Actually, our head of logistics and operations is Canadian. So we’ve been like, “When are we going to Canada?” it’s been tough to prioritize that when we have all these other burning fires in terms of a growing company and all the things that we want to do. So it’s like; do we offer salmon, or do we crack Canada?

Juli Bauer: Yeah.

Mike Salguero: I do think Canada; it would be great for us to do it in ’18. I think that would be awesome. We actually have a huge l