Revolutionary You! #79-Carbs, Sugar, Grains And A Guy Named Taubes With Stephan Guyenet and James Krieger

Two of my most popular guests return in one episode to discuss an evidence-based take on what you might be seeing in the media regarding your food. Neuroscientist Stephan Guyenet, author of The Hungry Brain and internationally known researcher James Krieger join me to give their perspectives on a lot of what people like author Gary Taubes seem to be claiming is our reaction to certain foods in our diet. To learn more about my guests, visit and To learn more about your host, check out and like our Facebook page at Download, subscribe, share with your friends and please take a moment to leave us an iTunes review.

iTunes OR Stitcher OR iHeartRadio


Sleep Is The Enemy

*The title of this post was taken from the Danko Jones song of the same name*

When trying to solve every aspect of a weight loss journey, talking about food and exercise can become somewhat mind numbing.

Ask any five people who have succeeded at losing weight and keeping it off, you’re likely to hear five vastly different opinions.

One thing that doesn’t get hotly disputed is the importance of sleep.

As obesity rates are climbing in the nation, so are incidents of sleep apnea with correlations tying into type II diabetes. And while one could be obese without type II diabetes or respiratory obstructions during sleep, the deck continues to stack against those who have not solved the riddle of weight loss for themselves.

However, sleep isn’t just critical for those trying to lose weight. It’s a big deal for everyone.

Poor sleep patterns can affect your hormones, your ability to have a good workout, your adherence to a good diet and your overall energy levels.

Couple that with the fact that many people try to outmaneuver their poor sleep by compounding coffee with sugar and sweet treats creating a cycle of caffeine and a sugar buzz to keep them alert throughout the day.

Then you wind down for bed, physically or mentally exhausted, but with a body so cramped by the dietary indiscretions of the day that you rinse and repeat: poor sleep, poor eating, too much caffeine, etc.

If you find yourself struggling to get food in a good place or your exercise to a point where you can measure your progress consistently, you may have to start looking at your sleep habits.

Thinking back to my podcasts with my buddies Ian Dunican (Episode #35) and Dr. Spencer Nadolsky (Episode #13), good sleep isn’t a trivial factor in your health, it’s an essential one.

Some added tips:

-Use your bedroom for sleeping and intimacy (not office work and television.)

-Stop looking at portable electronics at least 30 minutes before going to sleep.

-Get your bedroom as dark and quiet as possible.

-Minimize alcohol consumption in the evening (which can help you fall asleep but will generally have you up in the middle of the night to go to the bathroom.)

-Aim for 6-8 hours of solid, restful sleep.

And if you’re one of those who thinks “sleep is the enemy” or “I’ll sleep when I’m dead”, you may be further behind the ball than you want to be.





Revolutionary You! #78-What You Should Know About Food Documentaries With Brenda Murdock, RD

This week, Brenda Murdock joins me again to give a dietitian’s perspective on the recent trend of food documentaries. We discuss what you should and shouldn’t believe when you watch them and offer a new lens to view them through. Brenda’s previous episode is currently one of my top 5 most downloaded episodes ever and you’ll find out more of why that’s the case when you hear this one. To learn more about Brenda, check out To learn more about your host, please visit and like our Facebook page at Download, subscribe, share with your friends and please take a moment to leave us an iTunes review.

iTunes OR Stitcher OR iHeartRadiorevolutionary-you

New Life

*The title of this post was taken from the Depeche Mode song of the same name*

When my wife, Marissa, was 14 years old she had a stroke.

Not much was known at the time about the cause except that her blood had a tendency to clot.

When we found out that she was pregnant, back in December of 2016, she was very quickly transferred from a regular OB to one who specialized in high risk pregnancies.

Last week, we went to the hospital so she could be induced for labor. Due to the nature of her situation, her doctor felt that any time beyond 39 weeks would raise her risk during labor exponentially.

One of her challenges was that she had not dilated as much as the doctor would have wanted so measures were taken to get her to 10cm as efficiently as possible.

Unfortunately, her body was fighting her every step of the way. On the evening of Wednesday, August 2, she was given an epidural and turned on to her left side to try and get some sleep.

Within an hour, her heart rate skyrocketed and her blood pressure plummeted.

Marissa signaled the nurses and before we knew it, there were 6 nurses/OB’s in the room with us trying to get Marissa’s levels regulated.

My biggest fear during this labor procedure was that Marissa’s stroke history would come back to haunt us and I watched quietly while the medical professionals worked to get her heart rate and blood pressure back to normal.

It took nearly an hour for her body to start responding positively. Then we spent another 2-3 hours for the monitors to stop going off every time her heart rate tried to spike.

When the morning came around, her OB told her she had been through enough trauma for one evening and since she was not showing significant signs of being dilated to his liking, he was scheduling a C-section.

And within the next two hours, she had gone from less than 5cm dilated to 8cm.

The doctor was thrilled and said, “Let’s get you ready for a natural birth.”

At 11:30am, procedures started for our baby boy to be delivered.

And at 12:03pm, on Thursday, August 3, Sebastian James Carlin Leenaarts was with us. Healthy and happy, just like his mother.

I was fortunate to be at Marissa’s right side to watch it all happen.

While all celebration is rightfully focused on our son, the spotlight should also be on his mother who fought through 36 hours of more ups-and-downs that any rollercoaster I’d want to be on.

To my wife, was there any doubt that you would do anything for our son? Never.

And to our son (that he might some day read this), your mother would have given her life to make sure you saw the light of day. Thankfully, she didn’t have to.

Thank you to everyone: family, friend, or client for your prayers, messages of love, and help so far along the way.

Sebastian will never hurt for love or affection.



Revolutionary You! #77-Eat, Lift, Thrive With Sohee Lee

Sohee Lee makes her first appearance on the show and we chat about her awesome new book “Eat, Lift, Thrive.” Sohee has a great psychological approach to the way she writes about fitness and nutrition and the success of her new release shows why. We talk about some of these concepts in the show and we also tackle an unfortunate reality in the fitness industry regarding content plagiarism. You can buy “Eat, Lift Thrive” now on Amazon and find out more about Sohee at To learn more about your host, check out and like our Facebook page at Download, subscribe, share with your friends and please take a moment to leave us an iTunes review.

iTunes OR Stitcher OR iHeartRadio




*The title of this post was taken from the Commodores song of the same name*

Kristie has been an on again-off again client of mine since 2010. A fellow business owner, she has been not only a great friend but a trusted professional adviser.

Like many people, Kristie doesn’t enjoy exercise. She knew back in 2010 as she knows now that lasting success in weight loss comes from getting control over food more than getting control over exercise (although, you’re best served to balance both if you can.)

Last week, she reached out to get herself back on plan to get some weight off. We talked about her diet and how she had recently given up alcohol and soda to get things in a better place (this change coupled with increased water intake gave her a 6 lb. loss in one week.)

We also had a small chat about how she should eat. There’s a Subway in our plaza and she asked me what she should order. We went over and looked at the menu and she settled for a 6 inch chicken sub with veggies and mustard plus a bag of Sun Chips (total calories approximately 540.)

Today, we had a more in depth conversation about how her food should look for her to see the progress she hopes for. Like many of my female clients, her intake was projected around 1400 calories per day.

Then, she asked the million dollar question: What does that even look like?

I asked her if she remembered what she ordered from Subway and she did. So, I asked her to break down her day into 3 separate meals (breakfast, lunch and dinner.) I had her place her Subway selection (with chips) into the lunch area. Then I asked her to duplicate the selection for dinner just to see the numbers work out. She added up the two meals and totaled 1080 calories. That leaves her 320 calories for a moderate sized breakfast. I told her she could simply drink a protein shake and eat a banana since she isn’t accustomed to eating breakfast. That would get her day filled.

She then asked: “If I see that I can have 540 calories for dinner, that’s about the same as a Big Mac. Are you saying I can have a Big Mac for dinner instead of a sub and I will still lose weight?”


“So, it doesn’t really matter what I eat or what time I eat, as long as I can keep my calories in line?”

“That’s correct.”

“There really isn’t anything about good calories or bad calories that I need to be concerned about?”

“Not really. However, you may want to be aware that the foods you’re choosing may not allow you to feel your best. You will lose weight but some foods may not agree with you as much as you might hope. You’ll have to determine that as you go.” 

“But as long as I can do things like stop eating chips or not order the fries so I can have things like burgers or be able to eat something I would enjoy at a restaurant, all you care about is calories?”

“That’s right.”

“I can do that.”

There are many, many ways to complicate weight loss.

There are many distractions that keep you from focusing on the numbers that matter.

Kristie and I found a way to make her journey easy.

And that’s basically what you’ll want to do as well. 20369539_1602190976460098_1339669396587914192_o





Someone Has To Say It #54-Be Original…Or Die Trying

When you have one episode planned and the pre-episode chatter unveils a more pressing topic, you change plans. That’s how we roll on this week’s episode. Tune in to hear more. To learn more about your hosts, check out and Download, subscribe, share with your friends and please take a moment to leave us an iTunes review.

iTunes OR Stitcher OR iHeartRadio


Revolutionary You! #76-PCOS Strategies (Diet, Supplements, Training) And More With Lyle McDonald

It’s my great pleasure to share the episode with Lyle McDonald this week. He has been working the podcast circuit recently discussing a lot of issues pertaining to women’s training and nutrition while he is wrapping up his magnum opus on the subject. This conversation (my longest episode to date) focuses on a smaller part of the female population: those with PCOS. What you’ll find is that Lyle delves into not just this segment but considerations for both males and females who are trying to lose weight. You do not want to miss this. To learn more about Lyle’s work, check out and To learn more about your host, check out and like our Facebook page at Download, subscribe, share with your friends and please take a moment to leave us an iTunes review.

iTunes OR Stitcher OR iHeartRadio


Devil In The Details

*The title of this post was taken from the Placebo song of the same name*

At least a couple of times a year, I go back to counting my calorie intake.

For as many conversations as I have with clients about being mindful of portion sizes, I always find it fascinating (and frustrating) how easily my own portion sizes can get out of hand.

And I am always open to experimenting with different ways of eating that might work better for me.

Over the last several months, I gravitated towards a lot of grazing. Being always within a few steps of a refrigerator, I have easy access to fruit, yogurt, protein shakes, peanut butter, bread, cereal, etc.

Because I was grazing, it was easy to eat 200 calories here, 300 there. And like anything else, it adds up.

Since I’ve started tracking again, I’m trying to settle on 3 meals a day, each approximately the same size.

One of the reasons I like it is because when I get hungry, I reach for water instead of food. As a result, I’ve increased my water intake by about 20% which has been more of an asset than a hindrance. Not having the reaction of letting perceived hunger guide me back to the fridge, keeping water intake higher has been getting me through from meal to meal.

I’ve also found that when I go to restaurants where I can track calories per meal, I end up making better decisions. Rather than going for whatever I want, I invariably pick a better (lower calorie) option.

While it wasn’t necessarily a goal, I’ve had some fat loss with the tracking too. Being mindful of where calories are (and aren’t) plus the increase in water intake has made me feel less bloated and helped me sleep better.

Recently, one of my clients found a tactic that has worked well for her. When asked what she’s been doing differently to help her with weight loss, she said “I take whatever I would have normally had before and I cut the portion in half. Even with something like pizza, if I used to have three slices now it’s just one.” (Thanks, Amy) 🙂

And calorie counting is not a perfect measurement. Some people vastly underestimate what they take in. I recently heard a tip where it was offered that if you think you’re counting calories right but you’re not losing weight, try eating pre-portioned meals for a while (think Lean Cuisine, Smart Choice, etc.) and buy enough to meet your daily calorie goal. (Thanks to Eric Helms and Alan Aragon for that one.) Try it for a week and see if you drop weight. While it may not be the long-term plan that works for you, it can spark the weight loss you’re looking for and remove the guesswork for a while.

My buddy, Dr. Spencer Nadolsky, made this handy infographic if you’re looking for other ways to accomplish the same goal. You can see it here

There are a lot of ways to tackle weight loss. I will always lean to the belief that if you’re guessing that you’re right but you aren’t seeing results, then guessing may not be working for you. Some of these tips might get you closer to where you want to be.