Done with Dieting Episode #94: Listener Questions Volume 2

listener questions

I looooove getting questions from my listeners and clients. It really helps me to understand what info you are looking for, where you need help, and how I can serve my community of amazing women!

So, today I’m answering listener questions. Your questions that you’ve asked me through email or via direct message. I love answering your questions, so keep them coming.

Are you loving the podcast, but arent sure where to start? click here to get your copy of the Done with Dieting Podcast Roadmap Its a fantastic listening guide that pulls out the exact episodes that will get you moving towards optimal health.

If you want to take the work we’re doing here on the podcast and go even deeper, you need to join the Feel Good Sisterhood - my group coaching program for women in midlife who are done with dieting, but still want to feel good! The Feel Good Sisterhood is open for enrollment, so click here to discover if group coaching is a right fit for you and your goals.

I am so excited to hear what you all think about the podcast – if you have any feedback, please let me know! You can leave me a rating and review in Apple Podcasts, which helps me create an excellent show and helps other women who want to get off the diet roller coaster find it, too.

What You’ll Learn from this Episode

  • What should I do if I want to start exercising?
  • How do I increase my vegetable intake?
  • What should I eat before exercise?
  • How much should I exercise per day and/or week?
  • How many meals should I eat?
  • How many calories should I eat per day?
  • What’s the best weight loss diet?

Listen to the Full Episode:

Full Episode Transcript:

On today’s podcast, I am answering listener questions. So, if you submitted a question, I might be answering it. Let’s get started.

You are listening to the done with dieting podcast. The podcast for women in midlife, who are done with dieting, but still want to lose weight and feel good in your clothes.

You know that diets don’t work long term. But you feel like there’s this secret that everyone else knows that you just haven’t figured it out yet.

I am your host, Elizabeth Sherman. And I’ve helped hundreds of women get off the diet roller coaster, change their relationship with food, exercise, and their bodies.

Through this podcast, my goal is to help you too.

Welcome. Let’s get started.

Hey everyone, welcome to our podcast today, podcast number 94. And what we’re doing today is I am answering listener questions.

So many of you write into me and ask me just amazing questions. And I did this a few months ago, and I got really great feedback from so many of you who didn’t get questions answered that was a really helpful episode. And so, what I decided to do was do another one.

And a few months ago, I actually sent out a request on my social media channels, and if we’re not connected on social media, I definitely want to do that. So, you can find me at done with dieting, I’ve changed my surname. So, you can find me at Done with dieting podcast on Instagram, and then on Facebook you can find me by looking for Total Health by Eliz, so And I would love to connect with you because I love answering your questions.

And why I love answering your questions is because it gives me information that I can use then to produce podcast episodes that are really helpful for you. That are things that you’re looking for and things that you need. So, if you have questions, I want you to keep them coming because I love answering them. Okay.

So, moving on. All right. Now, the first question that I want to answer comes from Sherry, and she asks, what should I do if I want to start exercising? Of course, with any question that we ask or that you ask, I’m going to come back to you with other questions because this is actually a very common question, however, the answer which tends to happen when we’re talking about health and fitness is it depends. Okay. And so, what it depends on, the answer. What it depends on is first, what do we define as exercise?

So, when you think about where you are right now and where you want to be, what modality is that that you want to be doing? Are we talking about cardio? Are we talking about just general physical activity? Are we talking about doing yoga? Are we talking about doing strength training? Like, what is it that we’re talking about when we’re talking about exercise. Because exercise is a really broad bucket. And so, the first thing that I want you to ask yourself is okay, so what am I talking about?

And then, the second piece to that is we really want to create small goals, small behavior goals that reach to that point. So, right now, if you are currently a couch potato and you want to start walking or running, great. What we want to do is we want to make it so super freaking simple. What we want to do is we want to pick what I call or what I love this phrase, the low hanging fruit. What is the easiest thing that you can do that will get you one step closer to the goal?

Now, again, if you’re a couch potato right now and you want to start moving, I am of course going to recommend that you start walking. And your brain is going to tell you with this advice that I’m going to give you, your brain is going to tell you that it’s not enough. What I want you to do is I actually want you to start with five to ten minutes, 1, 2, 3, or 4 times per week. Okay?

You could also do it every day. Do something that when you write it on your calendar, and that’s something that you’re going to do. When you write it on your calendar, you’re like, there’s no way that I can’t do this. Okay. And then, what you’re going to do is you’re going to write it on your calendar just as I said, you’re going to expect that you’re not going to want to do it. Because it’s something new and you’ve been avoiding it, but you’re going to do it anyway.

And then, after you do the thing that you’ve put down on your calendar, that’s so easy to do. I want you to think about how proud you are of yourself because that’s going to get you going the next time. The first time is the hardest. The first time you walk around your block is going to be the hardest. Because your brain is like, no, this is difficult. This is hard. I don’t like doing this. I’m going to get sweaty. People are going to see me.

But then once you do it once and you realize that it’s a safe activity, that you feel good afterwards. Then, what you can do the next time is talk yourself through it and say, oh, remember last time, I really didn’t want to do it either, but I felt so good after that. And so, you chase the high that you get after the discomfort of actually doing the walking. Right? Start small, schedule it, and then expect to not want to do it. And then, the last piece to that is doing a scan afterwards and acknowledging how good you feel after it.

Now, there’s a podcast that I recorded, oh, probably at the very beginning. I’ll link to it in the show notes. And in that podcast, I talk about something called frequency, intensity, and density. And so, once you’ve established a certain routine of your movement. Then, the next thing that you want to do if you want to progress is you want to increase either the frequency that you’re exercising, the intensity at which you are exercising, or what I call density, which is like how much time within a given day or period that you are exercising.

Go check out that podcast episode and it’ll explain it way more than I’m talking about right now. Alright? So, that’s the answer to the first question, what should I do if I want to start exercising?

Then, the next question that I got was from Karen. And it says, how do I increase my vegetable intake if I don’t like vegetables? Okay. Now, this isn’t a question that I get so often because most of my clients love vegetables. They just find that they don’t eat them a lot. However, if you are someone who doesn’t like to eat a lot of vegetables, know that you are 100% not alone.

Now, if you want to increase your range of vegetables because that’s something that I actually do get a lot of when I work with clients. So, clients will say, you know, I really only like broccoli, and green beans, and maybe some cauliflower. But I don’t really like these other types of vegetables and I’d like to be able to increase the range of my nutrients.

And so, the first thing I want to let you know about and this is actually advice for children as well is that it takes us about 15 times of exposure to a vegetable or to a food before we actually like it. So, the first time we taste something, we’re like, Oh, I don’t like this. I don’t know that it’s right for me. And so, what tends to happen is our brains are really negative and they’re like, I don’t like this. It’s something new, it’s something different, and bleh.

And what I want to suggest is that if it’s something that’s important to you, then you can keep trying over, and over, and over again. And this is true for children as well. So, if you want your kids to have a more robust diet, then what you want to do is you want to make them try eating the same vegetable over, and over, and over again.

Now, that being said, when we’re talking about children, okay, and I know that I’m taking a detour here. But one of the best ways to get your children and actually this is true for adults as well. But one of the best ways to get yourself to have a more diverse palate is actually to engage in cooking more. And so, that’s actually going to be one of my pieces of advice to you is the more you become a more diverse cook.

And just as an aside here, when Gary and I moved from Austin, Texas to Mexico. One of the things that I did, and I was planning on doing like this whole write up on those meal delivery kits, you know, things like home Chef or Blue Apron and things like that. So, I did it because I was in the process of moving and I didn’t really want to have all of this food. And so, I thought it would be a really good experiment. Although, I resisted doing those meal delivery kits for a really long time because I didn’t really feel like I needed to have that. I was like, I don’t have a problem cooking, so therefore, why do I need to do this?

But what I loved about it is that those meal delivery kits actually exposed me to so many different flavors and ingredients that I really wasn’t purchasing myself. And so, like for example, if I had looked through menus or if I had looked through recipes, one of the things that I was exposed to was gooseberries, and kumquats, and capers were something that I really wasn’t cooking a lot with.

So, if I found a recipe with those ingredients in it, I would just pass and move right along. But what I loved about those is that it kind of forced me to use them anyway, right? And it really broadened my palette and my cooking abilities. So, if that’s something that you want to do, I really kind of recommend trying one of the meal delivery kits, even if it’s not permanently, if it’s for a few months, so that you can engage your cooking abilities a little bit more.

So, enrolling in cooking school, I love that. But also trying different cooking techniques when you are cooking vegetables. So, roasting completely changes how vegetables taste as well as, you know, we’re used to steaming. And steaming is great, but you can grill vegetables and so you get a completely different flavor profile and then also juicing will produce different results as well.

And so, really try different cooking techniques and see what works for you. See if you like it one way or another. And so, speaking of juicing, one really great way of getting your vegetables in is through juicing or through smoothies and protein shakes. Now, I want to make a caveat about juicing, because when we’re juicing, what we’re doing is we’re taking in all of the nutrients, which is great. But minus the fiber.

And one of the reasons why we want to eat vegetables is not only the vitamins and minerals that come in those vegetables but also because of the fiber and because of the water that’s in there. And what that does is it actually makes the food very filling.

And so, for my clients who really struggle with overeating, I follow a thought process of displacement or what you’ll also see as volume metrics, which is adding more volume of food, adding more vegetables to your diet, so that it crowds out the stuff that we don’t want to be eating as much. And so, what juicing does is it actually prohibits that a little bit.

So, do the juicing if you don’t necessarily have a problem with getting in enough fiber but if you do want the extra nutrients. And again, eating vegetables is so good for you, I want you to do it. Now, if that is also tough. So, adding vegetables to your smoothies and to your protein shakes.

I also want to suggest that there’s a brand of greens powder. And now, this is actually really important because there’s this brand of greens powder and I am not an affiliate with them, this is just something that I have experimented with and that I enjoy. And greens powders can ruin a smoothie like nothing else. Greens powders actually taste like grass. And so, you want to be really careful about greens powders.

Now, if you want to take greens powders and do what’s called a plugin chug, totally fine. You put greens powder in a glass, put a little bit of water in there, and then drink it like a shot, and then follow it with something else that tastes better. But if you just add it to juice, for example, or add it to your smoothie, it can actually really ruin it.

So, there’s a brand of greens powders called Amazing Grass, and I really like these greens powders because they’re also flavored. And so, there was a flavor that I used to use a lot, which was a chocolate flavor, and it really added a lot to my smoothie. They also have citrus as well as Berry, so check those out if you can find them and you can find them actually on Amazon or you can probably go to GNC or Smart Shop or any of those supplement places and find that there.

Now, something else I just want to add as an aside here is that oftentimes, my clients will say that they don’t like smoothies because of the protein powder. And I just want to add as an aside here, that if you purchase unflavored protein powder, and you can do that in bulk at Whole Foods or Sprouts, or you can also find it online in Amazon.

What you can do is you can flavor your smoothie and it actually doesn’t affect the taste because what I find with many of my clients is that the objection that they have is that the flavorings that they use in pre flavored protein powders tend to be a little bit chalky, or too sweet, or whatever. And so, what you can do is with that protein powder, or with that smoothie, you can flavor it yourself. Okay.

So, that was the end of my question of how do I increase my vegetable intake if I don’t like vegetables? So, again, try different cooking techniques. Number two or another option is enroll in cooking school. And then, number three is try to get them in smoothies or protein shakes. As a last resort, I’m going to suggest that you take supplements which would be your greens powders.

And there’s one other resource that I want to share with you. There’s an author, her name is Missy Lapine and she goes by the moniker of the Sneaky Chef and she has two cookbooks. One is Simple Strategies for Hiding Healthy Foods in Kids Favorite Meals. And then, there’s another one that she has which is called How to cheat on your husband. And I love her method because what she does is she uses a lot of purees. And so, you puree, for example, cauliflower and then mix it in with like for example, your potatoes.

So, one of my favorite techniques is when I make mashed potatoes, I use half potatoes, I use half cauliflower, and then I’ll also put in a few cloves of garlic to mask the cauliflower flavor a little bit. Boil it all together, just pour off the water, and then just mash it right there. And that way, you actually don’t need any milk or things like that to thin the potatoes because the cauliflower has it. So, there’s your little cooking tip today. So, that is just another resource that I wanted to share with you.

Now, in closing up this episode, there’s one other thing that I want to share with you, and that is that I get a ton of questions like, what should I eat before I exercise? Or how much should I exercise per day or week? How many meals should I eat? How much protein should I eat? How many calories should I eat?

What’s the best weight loss diet? I get questions like that all the time, and those questions are actually very personal. So, first of all, if you’re listening to this podcast, it’s probably because you want to be healthier. and as someone who’s a life coach, I’m also a personal trainer, I’m also a nutritionist, and a certified women’s health coach, and so I know a lot about health, right? I know a lot about women’s bodies. And so, that’s probably why you’re listening to me is because you want to learn everything that I have to say, and you want to apply these techniques and tools to your life.

But here’s the thing, every single one of us is completely different. And why that’s important is because there is no one right answer for any health question. like what’s the right diet, exercise routine, or whatever. I mean, I can make best practice recommendations, but you really need to try different techniques, see how they feel to you, and then decide what’s right for you, your body, your lifestyle.

But here’s what I really want to drive home in this episode, and that is that as women, we have been socialized to look to other people to answer our questions when in truth, We might actually be the best person to answer that question ourselves, but we do this because we lack self-confidence, and we have a ton of self-doubt.

At least I know that I used to. As women, we have been socialized, and are continually told, that we cannot trust ourselves when it comes to making our own decisions. And we can look at the current abortion debate right now to see that as evidence of what’s happening. By putting laws around when a woman can and cannot terminate her pregnancy, we are directly telling her that she cannot make decisions that are right for her and her family, and that the government needs to be involved.

And I think that that’s b*llsh*t. I think that women can make decisions. You are a very capable person, and you can make decisions about where to spend your money, how to spend your time, what you should and should not be doing. You get to make those decisions. But this carries over to all the other areas of our life, and I’ve made some huge realizations recently that will shift the conversations that we are having about our bodies, our relationship with food and exercise that I’m really excited to share with you. Just not yet.

But our weight has become too much of a distraction, and I know that you are tired of thinking about it. And thinking about food, and you just want to be done with. And this is why we have a multi-billion dollar diet and exercise industry. Because as women, we’ve been told that our weight is a problem and that we need someone else to tell us what to eat.

Not to mention that the entire diet industry is what created this problem in the first place for us. Like if we don’t know what to eat, it’s because we were told that we should be eating other things. Now you’re listening to this right now because you see me as the expert, and I might be the expert in women’s bodies.

I might have a lot of information and I’ve worked with hundreds of women to help them feel better and lose weight. However, you are the authority on your own body and on your own life. Again, we’ve been socialized to look for other people to have the answers. But you are the only one who knows how food makes you feel.

You are the only one that knows how many hours of sleep you should be getting per night. You are the only one who knows exactly how different foods make you feel. We can say that broccoli or kale is the most, most healthy vegetable in the world and that everyone should be eating it. However, there are people out there who have allergies or food intolerances to broccoli and kale, and so therefore, What we want to do as women is we really want to stop abdicating responsibility for our own health and our own decisions and looking outside to other people to tell us what to do.

You are the only one that has the information and has the biofeedback to make that decision for yourself. And so, the question of what should I eat before exercise? Well, again, that depends. Do you like eating before you exercise? Some people don’t. Some people need to, and it’s completely unique. How much should I exercise per day or per week?

Well, that depends on where you are in your fitness journey. If you’ve been a lifelong exerciser, maybe you exercise more. If you haven’t been a lifelong exerciser and you want to like maybe work up to five days a week, well then start small.

All of these questions are really questions that you get to answer, and you get to become the authority of your own life. Women are constantly taught that we’re not smart enough to make these decisions for ourselves, and what I want to tell you is that you are smart enough. Now, maybe you’ve never been taught how to listen to your body, how to get rid of that negative self-talk or how to have your own back, and instead talk yourself through it like a great best friend.

And what I mean by having your own back is how to make a decision and stick with it and then figure out, does this work for me? And if that’s something that you’re looking for, of course I’m going to invite you to work with me, either one on one or in my group coaching program, the feel good sisterhood.

But that right there is the nugget that I want you to take away, that I might be the expert, but you have your own authority when it comes to knowing what’s best for you and your life. So, I hope you enjoyed this episode. Keep your listener questions coming. You can reach out to me at

You can also book a consult with me, if working together is something that you’re really interested in, and you can do that through going to my website, at and book some time with me and see. You know how you want to work with me, which program works best for you? All right?

That’s all I have for you right now. Have an amazing week everyone. I will talk to you next time. Bye-bye.

Hey, Thanks for listening.

If you’re done with dieting and would like to work with me as your coach, I’d like to invite you to reach out to myself and my team to ask about programs and pricing. Go to to get started today. I can’t wait to hear from you. See you next week.

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