Breaking up with social media…err… taking a break… it’s just like figuring out junk food!


It’s been a while since I’ve written a blog because most of my writing has been on Instagram. Last week, Instagram and Facebook went out, and we all felt a mini panic about life without social media. I felt a mini panic that some of my writing would be lost forever!

Writing my shit out has helped me heal. Helped me get crazy thoughts out of my head and onto paper….er… screen. But when my writing is on Instagram, Instagram owns it. instagram can go away in a flash, and that would be the end of it all.

I was following a controversial Keto guy on IG for a while because his ideas were so out there, I was intrigued by the cult following he built. Anywho, the day before his Keto book launched, his Instagram account was hacked and all his followers were deleted. Whatever promotions he was going to do for his book no longer could happen. Whatever potential customers he had, gone.

Additionally, I have been thinking more about the health effects of being on social media. Not good. From eyes hurting, thumbs hurting, head hurting… comparisonities. Yuck. How can I call myself a health/life coach while encouraging and participating in this behavior?


Some ramblings:

Sunday, March 17-deleted FB and IG

Monday, March 18- Voxered clients, emailed my coach, emailed my newsletter, and recorded a podcast episode so people didn’t think I ran off with their money, that I didn’t block them, that I wasn’t dead

Tuesday, March 19- needed to sign on to FB to message a girl from my Mastermind about an upcoming trip- signed on, only looked at her message, saw the red numbers telling me how many messages and posts there were for me to read, consciously chose not to and made mental note of how FB tries to look us in which eventually turns into a mindless scroll and feeling empty inside- what just happened?! I know I usually sign onto FB because I am bored, lonely, avoiding something. FB provides a connection with people, but it’s not a real connection. I always leave feeling worse about myself.

I created a different way to connect with my clients using Slack- so it is a forum that will not collect data and will not contribute to scrolling culture.

FB entered my life my sophomore year of college. So just like dieting has been present in people’s lives for decades, FB has been present in my life for 14 years. I remember my friends at U of I, the big state school in Illinois, they got FB first and then it was rolled out months later to smaller colleges. When it got to Augustana, pretty sure we broke the internet because we were all on it. Back then, it was a novelty. It was cool to connect with people and see who was in your classes. But now… FB and now IG as well… run our lives.

Since sophomore year of college, I have given up FB for lent… I can’t even count how many times. Just like people have done 30 day all or nothing diets and then return to old habits, I’ve done the same with social media. Additionally, I have written in my journal over and over and over again how if I wasn’t on FB, I would be able to get so much more done in my real life. But my loneliness and boredom or avoidance always pushed me to going back to FB. Just like people have thrown food out or refused to buy certain foods… I have deleted the FB app off of my phone. And then just started using it via Safari on my phone. Just like Kris Carr used to throw food out and then spray Windex on it to prevent her from eating it,  I have deleted IG off of my phone to prevent myself from going on it… which also led to me reinstalling IG and deleting 3-4x a day. I started working with a social media manager to help me organize my social media and post things for me- and while she is amazing and you’ve might have noticed my feed looks more colorful and organized, this was a bandaid for a much bigger wound- deleting an app 3-4x a day tells me there is something else going on here that needs to be addressed. Having to walk on egg shells because I don’t trust myself is not a sustainable life.

I tried for the past 2 days to have a life without FB, and unfortunately right now, it’s not really possible though I am doing the work in my business to use other places and to get people off of social media the best I can. 

I texted my husband my plans and shared how Fb and junk food are so similar. There might not be scientific health benefits, but there are other things. I really do enjoy the taste of chocolate chip cookies. And I really do enjoy the connections and relationships I’ve made because of social media. 

So right now I am figuring out what tools I need in place to have a little bit of social media without a lotta bit. How to have social media without social media taking over my life. Additionally, how to run a socially responsible health and life coaching business. Training my potential clients to be addicted to social is not the business I want to run, and I encourage you to be aware of any accounts you follow that are making you addicted to social media. 

Ok so look at your phone or computer that you’re listening to this on. One thing I love about my online teaching job is that that little black dot introduces me to the other side of the world. I get to teach kids in china, and sometimes they’re on the bus with their iPad or train or car. And I get to see china. And it’s all possible because of that little black dot. That camera, right. I get to travel to the other side of the world. And in 25 minutes, it’s done. And I get paid which is pretty cool.

Well, when I am on social media and stuck in scrolling culture, I feel like my phone sucks me in, my eyes are glued to my screen, my chest hurts, I’m overwhelmed by the colors and the options and the clicking the voting. It’s not mindful decisions about the actions. It’s sucking me in, taking my data with each action I make on my phone, and using me. It’s using my data and profiting big time. And this isn’t saying money is bad because it’s not. We need money to live. That’s how an economy works. But the exchange happening over social media is this vapid exchange. When I work with a client, the client receives value in the form of coaching to make actions to change her life and I receive money for that. When I scroll on social media, I lose minutes and most of the time hours of my life and the company is making money off of ad dollars. 

Truthfully, this was my usual routine- click on instagram, look to see who had commented, refresh, refresh, look at some dumb memes, click over to Fb, scroll, scrolll, click to email, click back over to instagram. Sometimes for 30 minutes. Sometimes more. I have no idea. I did some math and I am going to go on the low end because I don’t know the number. But on the low end, if I spent 1 hour a day on social media over the past 14 years, 1 hour a day comes out to 365 hours a year which is 15 days a year, I am scrolling on social media for 15 days a year. If we look at that habit over the course of 14 years, that is 210 days. Over the last 14 years, I have spent 210 days of my finite life scrolling on social media. Hours wise, that’s 5,040 hours. And 1 hour a day is on the low end. I know there are plenty of days I’ve spent way more than 1 hour a day scrolling on social media.

If this behavior continues, at just 1 hour a day, which again, is a low estimate, but if at 1 hour day, in another ten years, 1 full year of my life would have been spent scrolling on social media.

We’re on this planet one time. Scrolling on social media makes me feel empty. This is not how I want to live my life.



Eating on Vacation... do the same as you do at home... EEK

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People think I'm crazy when I tell them to eat the same way on vacation as they do at home...

But it's usually bc they're super restrictive + perfect w/ food at home, so they think I mean they should while on vacay...

I used to be on diets or clean eating meal plans while at home, go on vacation, feel overwhelmed by the abundance of food options, not know how to eat for my body, eat everything in sight because wtf is moderation, feel sick AF from the sheer amount of food and types my body wasn't used to digesting, body would feel physically in pain from overeating, I'd need to take frequent naps while on the trip thus MISS OUT ON FUN, feel out of control w/ food, keep eating bc well, I already f*cked up + when we get home, I am going to have to go on a diet to clear up all the mistakes I made with food while on this trip.

I was overeating bc I didn't know how to handle imperfect foods.

I didn't know how to have a little bit without it turning into a lotta bit.

I never practiced moderation bc I kept telling myself I had an all or nothing mindset. (You are what you say about yourself.)

I repeated this for every trip. It's crazy that many memories have to do w/ feeling sick from food.

Cruise in 2010. Couldn't stop eating gross french fries.

Mexico in 2012. Eat breakfast, get booze + lunch, lay at pool + nap, eat dinner, get room service. Told everyone I was doing Weight Watchers when I got home.

New York in 2013 for a conference. Met Lucy Calkins while sitting on a bench eating a gyro AND a kebab. Not my proudest moment.

Currently in Thailand. Eating for my body, enjoying the culture, soaking up every moment of the trip, + when I overeat, I don't call it a f*ck up. I call this #imperfecteating. It's how I eat at home; it's how I eat on trips. It's just how I eat always.

The scarcity mindset around food f*cks us up. Practice abundance. It seems counterintuitive, but is what you've been doing w/ food actually working for you? Is food perfection followed by food chaos really balance??? Or is it a pendulum swinging between two extremes? I would love to hear if this resonates w/ you. Send me an email and lemme know




That time an Instagram follower fought me about clean food :)

In early 2018, I started tracking calories... which I hadn't done since like 2010. That's when I was eating like 100 calorie packs of crackers and nuts and not understanding why I was hungry all the time... 



Up until that point, I was seriously still afraid of food. I had been doing my single serving pizzas and my single serving cookies since ending Whole30 in 2016, but I still wasn't completely confident that I could eat REAL pizza or eat REAL cookies and be okay. 



I was working with a personal trainer who sensed my clean eating paranoia and suggested tracking calories to PROVE to me that pizza was allowed in my life. 



It was crazy. In the past, I had used tracking calories as a way to restrict myself of food. And now I was using My Fitness Pal to prove to myself I could eat food. 

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I also started learning more about calories which was previously a no-no word in my vocabulary.

Calorie became neutral and not hyped up. 

I started reading more actual scientific research. I unfollowed clean eating gurus. I learned about energy balance. I surrounded myself (on social media) with people who ate vegetables AND Twix bars. People who were moderate eaters and went on with life not being obsessed with food. Crazy thought, right? 



So i started writing more about not doing clean eating anymore.



I made a post about neutralizing the word calories and a clean eating instagrammer instantly messaged me.



“Severely restricting calories will only cause harm to people. You should be encouraging people to eat clean foods and not use calories as the way to eat." 



Huh? What?


I couldn’t believe it.




I was never encouraging restriction. In fact, quite the opposite!! I was encouraging people to NEUTRALIZE food. To be more comfortable around food. To stop fearing food. To STOP restricting food.



When I was clean eating, I was restricting like crazy!!! I couldn't eat anything at my parents' house. I could only go to certain restaurants. I could never hang out with friends. I had to be so careful about food. I had to be obsessed for clean eating to work.



I felt bad that I liked to eat garbanzo beans. I'm not kidding. I FELT GUILTY ABOUT EATING HUMMUS. How insane is that?



Clean eating was the most restrictive thing I did to myself. Clean eating and placing some foods on a pedestal... thinking of foods as black and white.. THAT messed me up. THAT was restrictive.




And you know what happened... after I restricted and told myself I couldn't eat XYZ... give it a few days or a few weeks or a few months... and I binged on those same exact foods like crazy.



"Jaclyn, don't eat the cookies at your mom's house. They're full of ingredients you can't read. Don't eat them. They're below you. Don't eat them."



45 minutes later... I just ate the entire package of cookies and now I have to hide the box because I am embarrassed that I was so judgey of my parents' food and then ate alllll of it when my parents can eat like 3 cookies and move on with their life. 



So.. no, I wasn't even encouraging people to track calories. I was merely saying that it was a tool that I used to stop seeing food as black and white, but it was NOT the way I was going to eat forever. It was a tool I used for a little bit that got me to where I am today: I had banana and peanut butter for breakfast, a dark chocolate kind bar and coffee WITH CREAMER for a mid-morning snack, a giant salad with protein for lunch... and probably pizza and roasted veggies for dinner. EESh. We eat a lot of pizza.



It's imperfect eating... and when I allow myself to eat these fun foods, I never feel deprived. I never have to binge because I can eat whatever I want whenever.



And I got here by using tools... and I have no regrets.



It was scaffolding that got me from point A (being scared AF) to point B (being comfortable and happy being imperfect!) 


When I saw tracking calories as a TOOL and not as a way of life, I was able to release that scaffolding when I was ready. I have no idea how many calories I ate yesterday. That's how scaffolding works. It provides the support we need until we can do things on our own. (And that's how coaching works too!!)

Clean eating did not help me be healthier.

Clean eating did not help me trust myself.

Clean eating encouraged me to be obsessed and decreased my mental health. 

It’s time to stop being scared of being imperfect with food.



#imperfecteating is where you learn it's okay to be imperfect and still thrive.



But that’s relative, isn’t it?



Here's the best part:

Imperfect Eating is unique to your life and your body and your tastes.


You're used to a health guru telling you exactly how to eat.


Here's how this is different: I am going to tell you exactly how I got from clean/binge to imperfect.. and then I am going to tell you to NOT do my way because then it will be another diet you can quiet. 


With Imperfect Eating, I am going to support you to create your own way of eating that fits your life.. instead of taking a way of eating and trying to change your life to fit it. 



Get #ImperfectEating here (disclaimer: there is pizza involved!)



Are you a member of the clean plate club???

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Scarcity thinking used to rule my life. "There isn't enough! I need to panic because there isn't enough! I need to do crazy things because one day this will run out!"

Scarcity thinking about food drives a lot of our actions, and we don't even realize it.

Have you ever been a member of the clean plate club? Like finished food on your plate past satisfaction just for the honor of being part of this club? (Yeah, a lot of us.) The clean plate club was an actual campaign during WW1 and WW2 teaching kids to finish their food because food scarcity was a real thing back then. Food really could have run out.

Nowadays, for most of us, not so much: Food is everywhere. (Candy dish 6 feet from me as I type this.)

BUUUUT we still have this residual food scarcity thinking from our grandparents reminding us to finish our plate... 

ANNNND if you have ever done a diet, clean eating challenge, or meal plan, you probably have food scarcity thinking. You might be worried about food because you fear there will be a day you're not allowed to eat your favorite food. So you overeat...

I did this every time I finished Whole30. I experienced what it was like to not get to eat my favorite foods while doing Whole30, so when I was done with Whole30, I overate (beyond comfort) all the foods that weren't present in my life. The only way I knew how to "eat healthy" was being on Whole30, so I overate, knowing that my favorite foods would be scarce/non-existent when starting Whole30 again.

Anywho, there is a different way. It's called Imperfect Eating, and it's this amazing place with food where you get to eat your favorite foods and learn to not make yourself feel sick when eating them. And also not ever feel guilty for eating something besides kale. Cool.



to the guy on the internet who wanted to explain processed food to me


When a guy on the internet tries to mansplain things to me about food, bodies, and weight issues.

Sooo.. listen guy, I’ve been in my body for 33 years.

The first time I thought I was fat was in 3rd grade.

The first time I cried about the size of my thighs was in 4th grade.

The first time I restricted food was in 7th grade. A friend’s mom had the military diet posted on her fridge, and I thought only eating grapefruit was the way to go. That evening I gave in an ate everything in sight.

The first time I saw "success" with a diet was when I was 29 years old. I had a list of perfect foods I was allowed to eat. Absolutely no sugar. And I followed this plan to a T. It was then followed by an enormous binge of every processed food that I had abstained from.

And then, because I was afraid of myself and didn't trust myself around food, I only knew to trust the perfect meal plan, I repeated this cycle of restricting until I binged over and over and over. It was fucking hell trying to only eat perfect foods.

It took 4 years of inner work to recover from that diet. Four years to stop being afraid of food.

I learned that if you're afraid of food, you're probably afraid of your body.

When I worked on not being afraid of food, I also worked on not fearing the imperfections on my body.

The first time I looked at my imperfect body and was ok with its imperfections was this year.

LET ME SAY THAT AGAIN: The very first time in my whole life that I looked at my body and was okay with it was when I was 33 years old.

It took me 33 years to be okay with myself.

So yeah, it freaking sucks that there is a lot of processed food out there. But I don’t care anymore. I eat processed food. Yum. Fearing food, fearing our imperfect bodies… we restrict and then we binge and then we repeat that cycle a million times.

I’m happier living in an imperfect body than stressing the fuck out about having perfect foods all the time.



imposter syndrome again

I’ve been struggling with the imposter syndrome and an upper limit problem. For the past week, I will suddenly start crying and scare the shit out of my husband.

It’s not depression. Or rather maybe it’s just not the same type of depression I’ve had before. 

And it’s not really anxiety. Or again, maybe it’s just not the same type of anxiety I’ve had before. Either way, it’s manageable right now and something I will continue to keep my eye on.

I’m not laying in bed unable to move like I’ve been in the past. This is more of a, wtf am I doing with my life. (A question my biz coach reminded me I need to reframe. It assumes I don’t know what I am doing.”


Imposter syndrome: who am I to be doing what I am doing

Upper limit problem: I do not deserve the success I am after.

This blog post is an open journal post that I am not marketing on any social media outlets, so if you read it, it’s my inner thoughts and struggles about my life right now. Being open and honest about my struggles helps me normalize things.

Thank you for joining me.

Affirmations about my worth as a coach:

My job is not to be perfect. I am open and honest that I am not a psychologist, not a therapist, not a registered dietician, not a nutritionist, not a personal trainer…I am a health coach. I am an educator. I have been teaching for 10 years, and I understand how to look at a problem and teach a solution.

My job is to be open about my struggles, share them, and give people the work I did so that I can help shorten their healing process. 

I cannot control other people but rather I can assist. I may not be their answer, and that’s okay. I may only be a stepping stone to their healing process. 

I am not a guru. I am not a diet book. What I did to heal is not the “right way” as it was person to me.. it’s Jaclyn’s way. 

My job is to share and not preach. 

My job is to ask questions and not micromanage.

I am not perfect, and I will never claim to be.

My job is to help people be okay with not being perfect either.

It’s okay to have an imperfect body, an imperfect day, an imperfect thought process, and an imperfect plate of food.

Perfection does not exist, and yet we are seeking it in so many places in life.

My job is to help people do their best, know it’s not perfect, and be okay with that.

Not being perfect does not mean we do shit work but rather we do amazing work and don’t kill ourselves over it.

Ok. Deep breaths. Moving forward.

Read the book The Big Leap.




The opposite of Whole30

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I’ve written a lot about Whole30, how it actually maximized my disordered eating tendencies instead of squashing them. Meeting my extreme way of eating with an extreme way of depriving didn’t help me get over my love of sugar. It made me want sugar all the much more.

And then walked in a new person with a completely different way of eating.

I watched my coach eat a spoonful of marshmallow fluff, and I was in awe.

"How the F could she put something like that in her body and not continue to eat the whole jar plus a chocolate cake?"

But she did it. And her relationship with food and her body was nothing I had ever seen before. She was strong yet imperfect. It was crazy to me.

My obsession with being perfect resulted me in saying F it when things weren't perfect and thus convincing myself to fall down a rabbit hole. When I instead focused on doing awesome habits and practices for my body and STOPPED focusing on being perfect, things like marshmallow fluff, chocolate cake, and pizza lost their allure.

They were imperfect foods that I practiced being around. In the last 6 months, we have gotten married, moved out of state, traveled through the south, stayed in 6 different hotels with our travels, + stayed w/ parents + in-laws. Being around imperfect food situations was bound to happen. No more searching for the perfect diet or meal plan because with these uncertain food situations, I was going to have to practice TRUST instead of CONTROL.

I have 50 women taking my free beta course on nighttime binge eating, and I am humbled by the early responses.
For so much of our lives, we've been taught to:
-fear and hate our bodies
-fear and hate food
-fear and hate imperfection
-seek out opportunities to CONTROL instead of TRUST

Perfect meal plans require control.

Meal prep Sunday requires control.

Bringing your own food to places requires control.

And when we’re trying to control, it’s often because we lack trust.

Whole30 taught me I couldn’t trust myself around certain foods, so I would have to abstain.

The result is of trying to be perfect with food:

-creating a poor relationship with our bodies
-saying mean things to ourselves over and over
-turning to food to numb pain
-hating how we feel after using food as a drug
-cutting food groups out at the promise of a perfect body
-feeling helpless
-starting the cycle over and over again to gain some sort of control again

I'm excited to work with my beta testers and give them permission to have something imperfect and practice what it looks like to not fall down a rabbit hole.

Here's your permission to do kind things for your body and not worry about being perfect.
Here's your permission to practice TRUST and not control.
And I’m sorry that someone or something in the past made you believe you needed permission.

You can join in on week 2 of the Ending Nighttime Binge Eating by clicking here.



Having 12 cookies plus a pizza plus donuts plus whatever does not mean you're off track.

Having a cookie does not mean you're off track.

Having 3 cookies does not mean you're off track.

Having 12 cookies plus a pizza plus donuts plus whatever does not mean you're off track.

Listen: You're always on track. Or rather on "a track." The track is your life. The track just looks a helluva lot different than you thought it would look. It's not a perfect straight line. (no one's is.)

If you use everything that has happened in your life as an opportunity to learn and grow..

if you approach EVERYTHING as either a WIN or a LESSON..

if you approach everything with a GROWTH mindset rather than a FIXED mindset, you're never off track.

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See the lil guy on the bike in the picture? Even during the dips on the track, he is still on the track. All this dips are making him stronger as he goes. (Prolly has some strong quads vs the guy above him.)

Your challenges make you stronger. Without them, you'd keep coasting along not really doing much in life...

Fun fact: It actually took me a horrible weekend of binge eating an XL pizza + a chocolate cake + cookies + everything else in sight (after finishing a month of clean eating) to decide I was #breakingupwithfoodperfection once and for all.

I'm thankful for that binge teaching me that I needed to take better care of my body and self, give up perfection, stop trying to be a clean eater, and instead practice being a #normaleater.

You're on track.


p.s. Your mindset on these things matters. Your mindset dictates your language dictates your actions. If you struggle with nighttime binge eating, I am going to help you with some TACTICAL things. I have a free mini course and I could use your feedback on the lessons before I launch my real course. THANK YOU SO MUCH. End nighttime binge eating!

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I had potato chips with my lunch and didn't die

Chances are if you are living right now and on social media or have Netflix, you know that there is a shit ton of crap in our foods and we need to only eat perfect foods free of chemicals because we’re all going to die if we don’t.

Maybe you’ve done a cleanse or a detox or a clean eating challenge to help you get rid of the toxins. And maybe… after a few days, weeks, months… the toxic food creeped back uncontrollably into your life so you needed to do a another clean, detox, or clean eating challenge to be perfect again.

Orthorexia. Ever hear of it?


“Compulsive checking of ingredient lists and nutritional labels

  • An increase in concern about the health of ingredients

  • Cutting out an increasing number of food groups (all sugar, all carbs, all dairy, all meat, all animal products)

  • An inability to eat anything but a narrow group of foods that are deemed ‘healthy’ or ‘pure’

  • Unusual interest in the health of what others are eating

  • Spending hours per day thinking about what food might be served at upcoming events

  • Showing high levels of distress when ‘safe’ or ‘healthy’ foods aren’t available

  • Obsessive following of food and ‘healthy lifestyle’ blogs on Twitter and Instagram

  • Body image concerns may or may not be present

Although being aware of and concerned with the nutritional quality of the food you eat isn’t a problem in and of itself, people with orthorexia become so fixated on so-called ‘healthy eating’ that they actually damage their own well-being.”

This last part is huge.

YES. It is important to eat nutrient-dense foods. Yes, no one is arguing against that.

But the obsession we’ve created around clean foods... the stress… the fear… the need for perfection…

It does 1 of 2 things:

1. You’re unable to live life and go anywhere to eat because you’re not sure your perfect foods will be there.

People kinda get sick of hearing how your foods are perfect and theirs are less than. So you stay home. And you miss out on life. (Who cares about being healthy if you can’t have a healthy social life?)

2. Eventually you binge on all the things you were avoiding.

This wasn’t supposed to be a crazy diet because you were being healthy and clean and doing kind things for your body. But one day, you eventually miss all the unhealthy things… and you binge. Like crazy. And when the binge is over, you vow to return to your clean eating plan because that’s all you know. Either be perfect or say F it.

There’s this crazy option though. An unexplored territory.

I call it being a normal eater.

You’re not a perfect clean eater and you’re not a crazy binge eater.

You break up with food perfection and attempt this space in the middle.

Instead of the pendulum swinging from binge to clean from binge to clean… it hovers in the middle.

It’s amazing.

A lot of people hate that I promote processed foods, but F ‘em.

I spent way too many years stressing about perfect foods, and when we look at where our country is with diets, we gain weight back because we never practice what moderation looks like. We only know PERFECT or F IT and we never practice the middle.

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So yes, I had potato chips with my lunch.

But I also had plants. And protein.

When building a plate whether it is a snack or a meal, I always lead with plants first followed by protein second… and a lil bit but not a lotta bit of processed foods to make sure I am practicing behaviors.. practicing moderation ALWAYS… practicing being a #normaleater and not trying to be perfect.

And for the last 3 years, it’s been amazing.

I love not being stressed about food.


p.s. If you struggle with late night eating, I am creating a mini course teaching women how to end it in a kind, kind way for themselves. It would mean a lot to me if you took my free mini course and gave me some feedback before I launched it. Thank you!! End Nighttime Eating



the monday after vacation

Ahoy friends!

We just got back from Seattle! Getting back from a trip used to mean starting a new diet. No. Freals. 

I can remember one of the first time I said this was when we got back from an all-inclusive trip to Mexico. I remember telling another couple at a pool it was okay that my belly was hanging out of my suit and I was double fisting mudslides because I was starting Weight Watchers when I was getting home. 

(Why I felt the need to justify or explain myself to strangers... not sure. I think I probably figured they were judging me, my body, and my drinking habits... but really, they were probably just enjoying their vacation and Iiiiiii was the one judging me.)

But today, I woke up early, taught my online classes from my jammies, took a mini nap because dang this time zone thing messed up my sleep, and then ate some scrambled eggs, stir fry veggies, 2 chocolate chip cookies, lemonade, and coffee with creamer. No diet. No egg whites. No black coffee. Just what I always eat. 

So vacay: Listen, I am all for enjoying life. I freaking love sugary mudslides. But there was something off about the way I was going about enjoying life a few years ago.

I was overeating on vacation because of a scarcity mindset. Because I felt like there wasn't enough. Because I felt like I somehow needed to get a good deal by eating all the food.

(Please. And then I think about how much money I've spent on diets, shakes, and coaches to lose that weight... I am thinking that "I have to get a good deal" mindset about food actually has costed me WAY more money than just eating a normal amount.)

So I kinda eat the same foods while on vacay now..

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Here's what I loved about the trip:

-Sight seeing in Seattle- such a walkable city! LOVED IT

-Seeing my lovely friend Christina

-Spending time with our super fun friends Anthony and Gina

-Running! I love running in new places!!

(To my surprise, I walked out of the hotel and was presented with a giant hill.. to which I challenged myself to keep running until I got to the top of it. No matter how far that was. There was def some walking. But I got there! And fun part- I have no idea how far I ran and have no idea my pace because the run wasn't about the numbers. It was about me getting out and exploring. It was about me moving my body.)


This means knowing enough about nutrition and my body to know what foods I needed... and what foods would have to do. So when we went to the Space Needle and I hadn't eaten properly before, I opted for some caramel corn and water. The healthiest option? Yeah, for what was there, this was the BEST option for me. Would Melissa Hartwig or Autumn Calabrese approve? Probably not, but I'm not living my life for them. It's for me. 

LASTLY, I know I talk about food a lot because that's kinda what I have going on here in my business right now with Breaking Up With Food Perfection, but the amount of thought or stress I place on food is close to 0. When I was trying to be perfect with food, the stress level was 100.

Because I've done the work, I rarely think about food. When I notice I am hungry, I find something to eat. When it's something imperfect, I don't stress or binge. I just move on with life.

I teach all of this in Breaking Up With Food Perfection.

My clients just completed week 1 of the course, and I couldn't be happier. 

There are the shiny pennies of losing some lbs on the scale. (!!!)  But really... the big and important work... the "this will stay with you for the rest of your life" work is when they're able to go to work, see catered food, have a little bit and not a lotta bit, not feel like shit, and move on with life. When they're able to go on trips, deal with the imperfect foods presented, make the best choices for themselves, and ENJOY LIFE. That's what we need for life. Not a 30 day perfect plan.

The second round of Breaking Up With Food Perfection will open up in the winter. Exact date tbd.  You can get on the wait list here.

If money is an issue, but you really want to do this, checkout teaching online This is how I afforded the $7000 investment I made in my coach. Teach just 1 hour a day, and you will be able to invest in Breaking Up With Food Perfection. 





Why You NEED to Eat Pizza This Weekend

Ok, you don't have to have pizza if you don't want to, but maybe you like cookies or beer or hot dogs. Cool. DO IT. 



I want you to PRACTICE having it this weekend.

PRACTICE eating as if you give a shit about your body. That's what moderation is at its core. When we eat fun foods but PRACTICE eating them in small amounts where we are not hurting our bodies and making ourselves feel physically ill. 


And it's important!


It's important to not always be on a diet, 


ANNND it's important to not always be binge eating on weekend in preparation for a diet on Monday.


My story:


I originally lost weight by giving up my favorite foods. I did whole30 a million times and gave up fun foods. You know, the ones that we lose control when eating. Pizza, bread, chocolate, cookies, alcohol.


Here’s what I didn’t know until it was too late:


when you lose weight by depriving yourself, it makes the fun foods that more alluring. You binge on them. You may have solved the short-term problem of weight loss, but you create even bigger problems: being obsessed with being perfect, fearing any foods that are not perfect, and binge eating those same foods you fear.

After my last Whole30, 2.5 years ago, I ate half of an XL pizza and then rushed to the grocery store to get chocolate cake, donuts, and cookies.




It was then that I realized I would need to LEARN how to have fun foods instead of DEPRIVE myself of fun foods.


Perfect meal plans, the clean-eating mentality, and fad diets solve the problem of quick weight loss, but where do they leave you for the rest of life? Probably in a shitty place. They haven’t helped you learn moderation, they haven’t helped you create habits around imperfect life situations, and they haven’t helped you learn wtf to do on a holiday weekend.


When we place a certain food group on a pedestal and tell ourselves to deprive, deprive, deprive, we eventually will binge, binge, binge. So the solution instead is to PRACTICE how to have those fun foods.


Practice having a serving of pizza.
Practice having a serving of ice cream.
Practice having potato chips.
Practice being a human in real life.


I say practice because you’re human, you’re going to mess up, it’s ingrained in you as a human, but messing up is a part of practice.


I hope you have some pizza tonight. I hope you go to a BBQ and have fun and not feel like crap after the BBQ. So yes, have some vegetables and plain water this weekend too. Fun foods and nutrient-dense foods can co-exist. And WHEN they co-exist, we are practicing moderation. I would love to be your coach and teach you how.


My course Breaking Up With Food Perfection teaches you how. 



Quick note, Tuesday is the LAST day to sign up for this 6 week course. I don't know when I will offer it again, but also, it will not be at this special beta pricing! 


What's included: 

-Welcome to Breaking Up With Food Perfection! (how fad diets are not teaching us the skills we need for life)  


-Ending Toxic Relationships - Why Weight Gain/Weight Loss is More About Our Relationships With Food and Self  


-WTF Are Calories- a Quick Guide to Nutrition and How Weight Gain / Weight Loss Works  


-Creating the "Your Name Diet" - Learning to Eat the Foods You Actually Like  -Eating for Pleasure/Emotions and Not Health- allll the reasons we eat  


-How the Heck Do You Listen to Your Body? Picking up on the physical cues we've been ignoring  


-The Stuff You Say Matters- Language + Mindset Makeover        


You can see, this is a lot different than just following a meal plan. Those only work until they stop working. When we get bored or when we feel deprived, then binge. You will learn skills and mindset habits over the 6 six weeks that will help you for LIFE. And yes, I have pizza every Friday night, I had Girl Scout cookies last night for dessert, and I had Gushers with my lunch today. <3      

Breaking Up With Food Perfection teaches you skills beyond the perfect 30 day meal plans.



Should you be eating 1200 calories?

Let's talk about water. Water is a tricky thing. When you don't have enough water, it's not good. In the short run, you're super thirsty! Long run- you can die of dehydration. If crops don't have enough water, they won't grow. Cool. Not enough water is not good.




But also... when you have too much water, it's not good either. In marathons, sometimes people over drink water, it messes with their salt balance, and they get sick from having too much water! If it rains a shit ton, field flood, crops die, crap! So too much water is not good either.





Water itself is neutral. Water is neutral. When we have too much water, that changes. When we have not enough water, it changes. But water is neutral.


Some people track how much water they drink and try to drink more.

Some people just drink when they are thirsty.

Whatever works for ya. Cool.



So let's talk about calories. I asked this question in my FB group a while back. 

I wanted to know what people thought of when they heard the word calories.


A lot. People thought a lot.


A lot of it was negative.


Anxiety. Just one more thing to track. Very tedious.


We have a negative relationship with the word calories because in the past, we have been told/trained/influenced to feel shitty about calories.


Cut calories. Track calories. Only eat 1200 calories in a day. 



No, seriously. Someone out there in the world is telling women that they should only eat 1200 calories in a day. It's all over instagram, and i don't know why!!


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So let's remove some of the feelings we have about calories and dig down into what a calorie is. 


A calorie is a unit of energy. When we eat calories, we get energy.


I happen to like calories because I like food.


I like getting energy from food.


I don't like tracking calories just like i don't like tracking water. So we don't have to!


But calories and water are actually really awesome and positive things in my life because I choose them to be. 


And just like water, when we have too few calories, some stuff happens, and when we have too many calories, some stuff happens.


When we restrict ourselves down to only 1200 calories, we feel hungry, deprived, angry... and eventually we binge.


When we binge, we probably consume 3000 calories in one sitting!



When we slowly reduce calories by ending our binge eating, when we start noticing how our body feels, when we eat to 80% full instead of 120% full, there is a natural reduction in calories and we lose weight. That's it. 



When we learn about calories and what they do for our bodies, we start to understand on a biological level wtf is happening! We start to notice which sources of calories make us feel best. We start to notice which sources and which quantities make us feel not so good.



So listen, calories are not the enemy. You do NOT need to eat 1200 calories to lose weight. (And shouldn't... you'll eventually binge...)


What we do with calories can be explored... 




We'll be talking tonight on my free nutrition class.. demystifying all the crap out there in the fitness world. Class is tonight at 7pm CST. There are only 3 spots left on the webinar platform so make sure to get your spot! 

Here <----




p.s. Email me at and lemme know... what are your thoughts on the word calorie? Are you open to changing your relationship with it? 



That time of the month cravings...

_About to start my period, and I am craving junk food! How do you deal__.png


Ladies. When it's that time of the month, we have two options:


1. Deprive. Restrict. Fight off the cravings. Stick to our diet. Stick to our meal plan.




2. Give in. Eat the salty foods. Eat the sugary foods. Binge like a mofo. (And start the clean-eating meal plan again on Monday.)


Orrrr that's what our brain is tricking us into thinking. 


That we only have two options. We are either being good and restricting or being bad and binge eating.


But what's in the middle? What's that unexplored gray area in the middle that feels super foreign because we've always either been on a diet and being good or not been on a diet and been bad? 


What's in the middle?


When I was working on breaking the diet cycle and making the transition from perfect clean eater / binge eater to wanting to just be a fcking "normal person" around food, I decided to practice having those "trigger foods" around me in the house.


Instead of demonizing pizza, ice cream, chocolate, cookies, chips, etc, I practiced having single portions. That meant creating my own single serving pizzas, buying single serving ice cream boxes, making single serving cookies, and portioning out a single serving of chips. It helped me normalize what portion sizes were, and it helped me practice eating these "bad foods" without going overboard. 


Truthfully, there were times I went overboard, felt like shit, but instead of banishing them from the house again, I granted myself compassion, used these times as teachable moments, and reminded myself it is always practice. Literally everything we do in life is practice for practice. No end goal. Just practice.


Now... years later of this practice... I can have full-sized bags of M&M's 2 feet away from me as I am working from home and not eat the entire bag. I can have cookies in the cabinets and not freak out that I might eat all of them in one sitting. I can do a road trip and not have every meal planned out and trust I will make the best decision with food.




So tangible things you can do when craving junk food around that time of the month or really anytime:


1. Buy single serving options.

2. Look at the serving size on the nutrition label and measure out that amount.

3. Make sure you're eating protein and veggies with meals so you're full and energized.

4. Stop using the words good and bad when it comes to food... and you...


You're human. That means you're flawed from the start. You're an imperfect being, but you can and will do the best for yourself when you practice trusting yourself. 



For some more EASY AF single serving recipes including cookies, pizza, and nachos, check out this link: Eat with me


Do you struggle with cravings? What works for you? 



how do i deal with the uncertainty of life?

Coming to your from the in-laws' house where food is abundant and sugary.


Shit like this used to scare the F out of me because I would be like, "How am I supposed to CONTROL myself around so many things?" And also, "How do you have all these things in your house? I am so confused why you haven't already eaten the entire bag of M&M's in one sitting? Why is the bag of M&M's still there?!"


But over the last 3 years, since I quit my job as being a public school teacher, I've learned that I need to either learn to deal with uncertainty or I will just have to be a hermit for the rest of my life.


Since quitting being a teacher, I first worked at a tech start-up in downtown Chicago where money was abundant and lunches were catered by local restaurants... So I had to learn how to have really delicious foods for lunch, not know exactly what was in the food I was eating, AND pick foods that would not be cause be to be in a food coma after lunch because I would sitting at a desk for another 6 hours. It took a lot of trial and error meaning there were days I ate food, felt tired, learned I couldn't keep overeating.


Then we moved to Atlanta and I got a job working for the (same) company that catered lunches to offices. So now I was the person in charge of sending the restaurants to offices. Crazy that I had so many issues with food and yet decided to work for a company with food... Again, I had to push myself in uncomfortable situations, learn to not be that weird girl with food issues, and learn to complete a work day surrounded by tacos, Chinese food, and fried chicken sammiches.


Thennnnn when that job never panned out to being a full-time job, I started being a nanny for wealthy families... where I was in these houses that had kid food. Granola bars. Fruit snacks. Chocolate milk. Easter candy. Tacos on Wednesday nights after basketball practice. I had to learn to be around these foods, make the best decision for myself in the given situation, and move on with life.



Gone were the days where I could be a hermit, only eat my perfect foods, and have all the perfection and certainty that made me feel calm. 


That's not real life. That's being on a diet. That's missing out on real life.


Real life is not perfect.

Real life is not certain. 

Real life is really messy.



It's August and summer is winding down. I've been chatting with my clients, and they're telling me they're nervous because end of summer means:

1. End of summer parties. Galore. Like omg summer is almost done, we need to have a summer party every day to soak up summer. 

2. Back to school stress. 



And here's the thing: life is uncertain now, life will be uncertain in a month, and after that, life will continue to be uncertain.


Summer is cray.

Back to school fall is cray.

Winter holidays is cray.

Beginning of the year is cray.

Spring that never gets here and it's still winter is cray.

Then summer magically hits and that's cray.


There will NEVER be a period of time that life feels super certain..

Life = uncertainty. 


And when life ever does become super certain, we'll start to complain about how bored we are of the routine... and we will do something to create uncertainty. Something to shake things up. Amiright? ;)



So what do we do?

1. Stop looking ahead for a time when... No perfect time will exist... shit will be uncertain then too.

2. Become comfortable with the uncomfortable.



How do we do those? 

1. Tell ourselves imperfection = life. Perfection sets us up for disappointment. Really say it aloud to ourselves. "I am imperfect. I am okay. This is life." Say it, write it. Remember it. 

2. Practice small habits every day. These are super tiny things you can do on the days that life is super cray. (Examples: 1. I always get in 7k steps. 2. I always eat veggies with my lunch and dinner. 3. I always have a serving of protein with my lunch and dinner. 4. I always have 8oz of water with my breakfast, lunch, and dinner. 4. I always say 3 things I am thankful for.... these are SUPER easy things you can do with almost 0 effort. We might not always be able to get in a 30 minute workout and have a perfectly created meal, but we CAN always do these small things. Consistency adds up.)

3. Reach out for help. Click here and we can hop on the phone and figure out a plan for you.







Connect w/Jaclyn

1 on 1 Coaching:






How To Make Money While On a Road Trip



Woo hoo! We just finished the last leg of our road trip through the south. We hit up Marietta, Savannah, Asheville, and Nashville.


Over a year ago, we talked about doing this, and I told some friends and they thought I was crazy.


Living in a hotel room?

Working remote? How does one make money on the internet if they're not selling sh*t? 

Too much uncertainty, right?



Yep, we figured it out, went with the flow, nothing went perfect, and it was a lot of fun. 


I woke up in the mornings and taught from our hotel room, and then we had the rest of the day to do what we wanted. I didn't work as many classes as I usually do because I took the weekends off. But overall, $500 while on the road sounds pretty good to me!


I taught 50 classes total: Some days only 2 classes/1 hour total because we had a lot to do. Some days I taught up to 8 classes/4 hours total.


50 classes x $10 = $500 for 20 hours of work (and no time spent on a commute!)


Wifi was not great in our first hotel room, so I had to use the HotSpot on my phone. But Wifi was great in all other hotel rooms.


What I used to teach: my computer, a mini white board and dry erase marker, the earbuds that came with my phone, my cell phone for some photos and GIFs, a tri-fold display board to make it look like we were in a classroom and not a hotel room.


Simple, less stuff > Overcomplicated, shit we can't keep up with


(One of my students asked me how I was in all different hotels, but it looked the same for her. She was amazed when I showed her what my background really was!)


Overall, it was a great experience, and I will do again when we take our next road trip!


I mentor new teachers through the hiring process and once they get started. Only 10% of applicants are hired! (I get a small stipend for coaching you through the interviews. Don't worry. You will learn how to teach this way! It's not hard.)



If you're going on a road trip this summer or want to travel and work, this is a pretty sweet gig.


You only need a Bachelor's degree in ANYTHING. No teaching certificate is required. Seriously. Love this side gig.

Apply here: Application   Referral Code: 03FJQO

Join my FB group here: Work From Home





Do diets even help us lose weight?

In a word: yes.

But we know what happens when the diet is "done" ----> gain the weight back plus an extra 10, 15, 20... 100lbs

So who cares about losing weight when weight maintenance is what we are really after...

Losing weight in a way that we can actually maintain...

And being happy and comfortable and enjoying life...


You see, losing weight is all about burning more calories than you take in.

On paper, it's easy. 


Eat less; move more.


But humans are not perfect science experiments and we add layers of complexity to everything! 

The thing about diets and meal plans and all of that... is they train us to do something drastic for a short period of time. And there are lasting emotional effects to diets. The yin and yang.


Diets don't help us sustain results.


WHO CARES IF YOU LOSE 25LBS BECAUSE YOU GAVE UP CANDY, COOKIES, CREAM IN YOUR COFFEE, PIZZA, AND ALLLLLL THE SOCIAL OCCASIONS because there will be a time that you want to go out with friends and get pizza and ice cream, and if your diet didn't help you learn how to do this, you either:

1. Miss the social occasion. Stay home. Eat your Lean Cuisine and sulk.

2. Go to the restaurant and eat allll the pizza, alllll the ice cream, and stop at Trader Joe's for their Dark Chocolate Cake which can be made into a personal cake if you try hard. (Been there!)


Diets do work. But they only work for a short period of time. So I guess this is a case of wtf does the word "work" even mean?


I've been exploring this a lot... We have been in Atlanta for 2.5 years.

February 2016, when I first moved to Atlanta, was the last time I did an all or nothing diet.

And it's taken me 2.5 YEARS TO HEAL MYSELF FROM THE DIET MENTALITY. (And I guess you could say my whole teenage and early adult life...)


Anywho, here are some thoughts from my journal this morning:

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Would you add anything to this chart? Take out anything??


2018 has been quite the year of self-exploration.


My upcoming online course will explore this issue and help you with long-term health and a sustainable approach to weight loss.

Sign up for the wait list here.






The BEST way to lose weight...and maintain health for life

When I first started wearing my step tracker watch, I found out my 2 work from home jobs had me moving a total of 2,000 steps a day.


That's not a lot...


I coach people on moving their bodies.
I have a podcast about running. 
I have a blog about health and fitness.
All of my social media accounts are dedicated to helping people live healthy, happy, and strong lives. Not for 30 days but for LIFE.


And the step data showed me that when I’m not training for a marathon, my life is pretty sedentary.


⚡️Sooo use the data to make a change.⚡️


The CDC recommends 10,000 steps a day. That doesn’t mean we all need to train for a marathon or go to a Cross-Fit class. We can if we want! But the daily movement we do just by walking our pups, getting up from our computer during the work day, parking a little further in a parking lot, taking the stairs instead of the elevator- allll of that adds up.


Lots of people maintain healthy lifestyles without giving to a gym or doing extreme workouts just by being more active in their normal lives. And by being more active with day to day life, we can SUSTAIN health for life.


July marks the start of the second half of 2018.


Join me on a habit-changing 6 months. This isn’t a challenge but rather this is the bare minimum we should be doing to maintain healthy bodies.


Lots of people do work challenges with step watches. They compete with co-workers to earn money. Studies show they are highly successful in motivating people to walk more DURING the challenge. But guess what?!?


When the challenge is done, studies show people go back to their old sedentary habits. There was no long-term change.


So let’s do this differently. Instead of being motivated by money or by competing with others, let’s work on long-term health for ourselves.


Being able to walk up and down stairs when we are 70.

Being able to play in the yard with kids or grandkids.

Being able to run around with students at recess.


Wanna join?


Download this calendar and track your steps. If 10,000 steps is way out of reach right now, aim for 4,000. 6,000. We can increase as we go.



-At the end of each night, record how many steps you walked.

-Post on your social media and tag @jaclynricchio with the hashtag #walkwithjaclyn for a shoutout and some encouragement from me

-Set a goal for the next day based on your data.

-If you miss your goal, it's nbd. We are looking for long-term health. Imperfect consistency and NOT perfection in the short run. 

-Have fun! Take the pup out. Take the kids out. Take the hubs or wife or bf or gf or roomie out.







CHEAP AF Adult Lunchable #1

$9.00. That's what they wanted for a lil box of snacks that included a tiny scoop of chicken salad, some grapes, some crackers, and a few cubes of cheese. 😲


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There is a super cute new lil shop/cafe that opened up by us, and I ventured in seeing if I could set up shop and work there.

$12.00 salads with not really much salad or protein.

$5.00 Kombuchas.

$1.25 for a banana.

I get it. Like a cafe in a more affluent neighborhood has a pretty high rent to pay to be there. And the price for their foods includes the ingredients, the salary for the hands that make the food, the rent, the light bill, the you name it.


But here's the reality of what's happening in our country:


People think that healthy eating is out of reach for them because of their limited paychecks that need to be spread over a million things and because what's "healthy" is trendy and expensive.


The way "healthy eating" is marketed to us makes it seem like we need to spend $3 on an organic avocado or drink a $5 superfood drink or spend an entire paycheck to get supplements.


I can't stomach it. I spent the first decade of my career working with families who lived in actual food deserts and had meager paychecks, and it's ridiculous to think that someone needs to spend $25 a day per person on food in order to be healthy. No.


It's not true. There is a simpler way.


I'll be bringing you simple and CHEAP AF meal ideas from now on. Things you can buy at your big box grocery store and don't need a special trip to a fancy store 12 miles away. Foods that don't take 12 hours to prep.


If you can't make healthy eating a habit you can repeat over and over and over again, even when life throws you curveballs, you're never going to be able to stick with it. Simple is better.


Step 1: I always think through the template of veggie, protein, carb. I might add fruit here and there, but veggies are king. Let's think plants as veggies or fruit, mmmmmkay?

Step 2: Plants: I grabbed some cucumbers, pickles, edamame, and banana!

Step 3: Protein: I previously had boiled the eggs. My go to: boil the water, add the eggs slowly with a spoon careful to not break them. If they break, you'll be okay. Boil for 11 minutes. Empty the water and add ice and cold water. The ice bath will help them peel easily!

Step 4: Carbs and fat: Went for a few baby pitas cut up into mini baby pitas and 1 tablespoon of ranch.

Step 5: EAT!


Price? Waaaaay less than the $9.00 for the cafe's box o' snacks.


Want to make it a little bit more filling? Get a plate, lay down a bed of lettuce, and use this snack box as toppings for your salad. You'll love it! All the fiber will take a lot of chewing, slow down your eating, and make you feel amazing AF.

Want more EASY and pretty cheap food tips? 

Be sure to check out my free veggie guide here!




1 Comment

Which diet is the perfect diet?

"Jaclyn, what's the perfect diet? I want to have perfect health. Which one is the perfect diet? Do I do Whole30? Keto? Clean eating? Which form of clean eating? I read xyz on the internet and I'm so confused. Which one will work for me? Just tell me what to do."






A pretty decent plan you can actually adhere to is waaaaay waaaay waaaaay better than a perfect plan you quit.


Sure, eating organic vegetables grown by unicorns and watered with rainbow waters would be the perfect veggies to eat. But not every person has access to organic plants and grass-fed meats, so they feel like healthy eating just isn't possible for them.


OOOOR they try to eat perfectly, they can sustain eating only perfect foods for a bit, and then they find themselves missing the fun processed foods. So they quit. They binge on all the junk. And they find themselves in a worse off place than when they first started trying to be healthy.



Stop trying to be perfect. Stop trying to follow someone else's plan. It won't work. They created it for themselves and you are a completely different person with a different work schedule and different tastes in food.

Start with eating some veggies. 
Add some protein.
Have some starches.
And sprinkle in treats. When you go overboard, because you will, because this is practice, because there are no rules when you're learning to eat for you, because being human literally means we cannot be perfect, grant yourself grace and keep going on with life. You don't have to stop and start over. You just go from where you are. Reach out if you need help.




No more diets.
No more restrictive meal plans.
No more lists of good foods and bad foods.
No more clean eating challenges.
You have to eat for life, not for 30 days.



Imperfect consistency.
Flexible eating.
Lifelong habits.




An imperfect and decently healthy lifestyle is way better than a perfect lifestyle you quit.





More on this here:

Breaking up with Whole30 and strict clean eating rules

Learning to eat pizza without binge eating alllll the pizza


1 Comment

1 Comment

WTF are we having for dinner?

Need a quick and easy dinner for tonight? Instead of making a single and super complicated recipe from Pinterest, you could give my SUPER EASY method a try.

I'm not saying to never peek at Pinterest for a new recipe, but if you're anything like me, those recipes really only get made when we are having a party and want to impress our friends with the cute things we made. See our dog party last year! All the food was dog themed! #pinterestwin

The other 98% of the time, I need QUICK meals that I don't have to plan out way in advance. Things I can make on the fly with regular grocery items we have in our house already. Meals that don't need a ton of thinking or decision making. Just healthy and tasty AF.


Enter the Veggie, Protein, Carb combo. 

It's super easy, and this way of thinking just might solve your "what's for dinner?" issues. And if you follow this way of thinking about dinner, your "what should we buy at the grocery store?" issue just needs a quick run through of this combo too.


How to DIY a really tasty and healthy AF dinner (2).png

Step 1: Pick a veggie. One that you like. Pick this first!! Here's why: The CDC reports that only 9% of Americans eat the recommended 3 cups of veggies a day. So pick a freaking veggie. And do not douse it in butter, cheese, or salt. Hold up.

For this meal, I picked broccoli. I had a FROZEN BAG OF BROCCOLI for like $2 from the grocery store. Gasp. And it wasn't even organic. I'll survive. I lightly sprayed the cookie sheet and then roasted them for 30-40 minutes at 400 degrees. I didn't even put oil or salt on them. They're still tasty AF. You can do this on Sunday and then reuse the veggies through the week.

How much to use in your meal? Grab a measuring cup, yes, a full cup or eyeball a fist size of veggies. Love them? Super hungry at dinner time? Miss out on veggies through your day? Go for 2 cups! Veggies: the more the merrier.




How to DIY a really tasty and healthy AF dinner (3).png

Step 2: Pick a protein. Ok. So food isn't protein. Food has protein... but we tend to think of meat as protein, so let's go with that. Carnivore? Lean meats like chicken, ground turkey, ground beef, chicken sausage, whatever. Vegan? Grab some beans, a veggie burger, whatever your fancy. Omnivore? Do a mix of both.

How much to use in your meal? A palm size or deck of cards. Or use a food scale and measure 4 oz. Or follow whatever the serving size is on the package. If you have a grill, grill a bunch of meats for the week on Sunday or whatever day you cook and then save to reuse through the week for different meals.

For this meal, I used 1/2 Trader Joe's chicken sausage. They're super easy. I sliced it and browned on a skillet. And I did 1/4 cup chickpeas. From a can. Gasp.


Step 3: Pick a carby, carb, carb. Ok, so this is kinda a lie because food HAS carbs. Food ISN'T carbs. But we tend to think of things like pasta, bread, and potatoes as carbs. So I'm just going with it.

How much to use in your meal? Follow whatever the serving size is on the label. Measure it out. What we think is a plate of pasta is actually like 4 servings of pasta. That's why people think carbs are fattening. Not because there is anything magically fattening about them but because we are so used to overeating them. (I'm Italian. Growing up, Sundays meant eating 2 plates of pasta and then sopping up the gravy with a slice of bread. The pasta isn't evil. The overconsumption of food I used to eat was the issue.) It might not look like a lot when you measure out what 1/2 cup of rice, pasta, or quinoa actually is. But remember you are mixing this with other food. You're normalizing what serving sizes are. And if you're hungry, you can add more veggies. Make a big batch of rice or pasta on Sunday and you can reuse through the week for more DIY meals.

For this meal, I did 1/2 cup mostaccioli. I am not gluten-free, but if you are, check out the pasta made from chickpeas or brown rice. Yum. They're tasty AF even if you are not gluten-free. 

Step 4: Assemble. And add some additional tastes. I warmed everything up in a skillet with 1 tablespoon of olive oil. I sprinkled with Italian spices and a little bit of parmesan cheese. Wanna add tomato sauce? Cool. Wanna add a different sauce? Cool. Look for ones that are not pure sugar or a million calories.

Step 5: Eat. All in all, this took like 5 minute to assemble BECAUSE I made the pasta on Sunday and reused through the week.

Other variations:



1. Cauli rice and mixed peppers, ground beef with taco seasoning, 1/4 cup rice and 1/4 cup black beans, a touch of cheese and guac. 

2. Roasted peppers, shrimp, pasta, a touch of sauce. 

3. Romaine lettuce and raw peppers, veggie patty, quinoa, 1 tablespoon salad dressing


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