Dec. 7, 2023

Transforming Mindsets and Embracing Holistic Health: Insights on Fitness, Nutrition, and Self-Love with Pam Sherman

Transforming Mindsets and Embracing Holistic Health: Insights on Fitness, Nutrition, and Self-Love with Pam Sherman

In this episode, Dr. Fitness talks with certified fitness instructor & CEO of Perfect Balance, Pam Sherman. Listen in as they discuss Pam's lifelong passion for health and wellness, her journey into teaching and training, and the evolution of fitness approaches over the years. And stay tuned to hear the importance of strength training for women over 50, debunking the myth of bulky muscles, and the impact of emotional eating. Their discussion covers changes in dietary trends, addressing misconceptions about fat, and the significance of prioritizing protein intake, especially during breakfast.

Pam Sherman has been in the fitness industry since 1997 as a group exercise instructor, trainer and coach. In the last 7 years, she's been an international speaker, written 8 books, is a coach on the FitRadio and TerraCore app and has helped 100's of women take control of their health!

• [5:36] Pam discusses the importance of strength training and protein consumption for women's health, particularly as they age.
• [9:15] Pam recommends prioritizing protein in breakfast and avoiding cereal and other high-sugar foods.
• [19:02] Dr. Fitness and Pam talk about the challenges of managing weight loss with a supportive spouse… emphasizing the importance of teaching one's partner how to love without food.
• [21:51] Dr. Fitness encourages listeners to prioritize self-love and mindset changes for a healthier journey.

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🤝 This podcast episode was brought to you by McGowan Spinal Rehabilitation Center
🎙️ Podcast Production by Dandelion Media
🔊 Audio Produced by Mountain Valley Media


Max Sturdivant/Dr. Fitness  0:04  
Hello, and welcome to Your Health Moment podcast. I'm your host Max Sturdivant better known as Dr. Fitness. On this podcast, I want to give you the tools to start, continue, and never give up on your journey towards health. Now, whether you struggle with your weight, eating the right food, hydration, exercise, or even time management, you're in the right place, and I'm here for you. Now, let's dive right into this episode. 

Thank you for joining us for another episode of Your Health Moment. I'm your host, Dr. Fitness. And as always, we're going to discuss all things holistic health, and wellness. And today will be no different except today, I have the pleasure of interviewing Pam Sherman, CEO and founder of the Perfect Balance certified trainer and instructor since 1997, which qualifies her easily for guru status, just so you know. So if you're over 50, and you're looking for smart ways to eat and to work out, you don't want to miss one moment of our discussion today with the founder of the perfect balance guru, Pam Sherman. So as you can see, I'm super excited to be interviewing Pam. Like we had a little discussion earlier. And I do feel Pam, unlike Pam, you are my people. So I do I genuinely I definitely feel that way. And so Pam, if you don't mind, can you tell us a little bit about yourself and then let's jump into this stuff that you're doing with the perfect balance.

Pam Sherman  1:52  
Sure, I have been passionate about health and wellness, really, my entire life. I was a trainer. Even when I was a little kid, I look back and my very oldest friend, we're still friends to this day. 51 years later, we were 10 and 12. And we wanted to go for a run and she wanted to eat an Eskimo pie. And I said if we go for a run first we can have the Eskimo pie. Second, she wanted to have the Eskimo pie. First I said we'd get a cramp. Even at age 12. I knew we couldn't do that. And we laugh about it because one of like three fights we've had in 51 years. But I have always a spirit come very easy to me. I've always been very motivated to work out to help others work out. And I kind of fell into teaching and training. I mean, there's no accidents, right? The Universe kind of put someone in my life who said hey, why don't you go over here and learn how to be an instructor. And I went to an 18 week course and at a community college on how to be a group exercise instructor while I was pregnant, my son who just turned 26. So it's what I fell into and what I love, love, love to do. Really my whole life as

Max Sturdivant/Dr. Fitness  2:54  
you say your whole life at 13 year, you already out and running with friends. So where did your passion for running start? If you started that young did was there somebody in your life that influenced you?

Pam Sherman  3:06  
I started? Yeah, I started at 11 My dad was an amazing runner in college. In fact, he and his teammates almost made it to the Olympic trials and the four by four relay. But back in the 50s I didn't know about stretching. And he tore a hammy on the first turn and his those dreams were dashed. But he was a recreational runner before it was even a thing back when they used to only make one running shoe which I got that first Nike with a yellow swoosh. I mean, that was it. But I asked to go to the to run with him. And he was very kind and said, Let's go to the track. Because at the time we live in Connecticut, which is very hilly. And I ran two miles without stopping. And it was the greatest feeling for me. And I literally never stopped. I'm still running 45 years later.

Max Sturdivant/Dr. Fitness  3:53  
Incredible. So as we get into it, I mean, you've developed this really cool system. And with all that time, you've had years to develop it. So I'm thinking that things have changed because I know in my practice, what I just share with people has really changed over the years. With technology changes and the information that we're getting. Is there have you found that to be the case for you?

Pam Sherman  4:25  
1,000,000% Yes, I mean, back in the day, running was the only thing but there was no internet there was no learning what's best for your body. Now that I'm 56 I highly encourage everyone who listens to me who I train with they have to strength train because muscle is your organ of longevity. And falls are the number two reason people die in our country and it's not just the fall but it's what happens after the fall. And your your strong muscles protect your bones and it is vital in the misconception of women are going to get big bulky muscles which will never ever ever, ever, ever happen. I want women to do less hard to get off the hamster wheel of the elliptical and start lifting some weights, because that's really going to make the second half of your life. I mean, that's

Max Sturdivant/Dr. Fitness  5:07  
here, because I do hear reluctance, a lot of women to start doing and using weights. But that is changing, there has been a cultural shift. And I'm really excited about it. And I think it's going to really make a big difference. I've seen it in my practice, and I'm sure you've seen it in yours. So that is a really great development when it comes to food. Have you noticed any changes in particular?

Pam Sherman  5:36  
Oh, so many. And there's the diet industry is a I think like a $500 billion industry is, in our society, especially with tick tock and Instagram, people want the instant fix, but your health is the only thing there is no quick fix for your health. So anything that has an expiration date, anything that has diet, all the diets work until you go off of them. The thing is, eating single ingredient foods that don't have any labels is your best bet. Prioritizing protein every time you eat to preserve your muscle that we are losing after the age of 40. So if we strength train, and we eat more protein as women, especially our carbohydrate eaters, as we get older, that's not serving us we want to eat more protein, so we stay strong and vital. I mean, we've all seen the elderly people in our grocery store that are kind of frail and hunched over. And every time I see him standing up, you know taller, but I tell people especially prioritize protein every time you that you cannot eat too much protein and you will stay full longer and your energy levels will not crash. No,

Max Sturdivant/Dr. Fitness  6:36  
Joe, you're doing great. I'm loving it. Another thing about it Well, what's your stance on fat because there's been a time where fat was the big evil. And then we had the beginning of like Atkins and how fat is really amazing. Do you have a position there?

Pam Sherman  7:00  
I do. I was very sad when the Keto was very popular. The keto diet is was made for people who have epilepsy because all that high fat is great for brain for your brain. It helps lessen seizures. Women do not process fat that well. And most women, if they eat a lot of fat, they gain fat. But there's different kinds of fat however, avocados wonderful for you. The problem with nuts is women think oh nuts are healthy for me and have a handful for a snack which could easily be five or 600 calories. So fat and moderation. Absolutely, our brain needs fat to function. We definitely need it every day. And if you look back to the 90s I love me some snack wells in the 90s. But that is really where the obesity epidemic started is when the government said have 11 to 12 servings of carbohydrates and very little meat or fat. That's all sugar that turned our country's health upside down. So the right fat, fat and meat is fine fat and eggs is fine. A little bit of cheese because it tastes good. A little bit of nuts and avocados are great. So be really cautious with your phone.

Max Sturdivant/Dr. Fitness  8:04  
Hey, I appreciate you sharing that there's so many I've read so many different books and and it's been just so much research on it. And it's great to get another experts opinion on their take on fat. I'm sorry.

Pam Sherman  8:22  
I was gonna say something that's really disheartening for everybody listening is peanut butter is not a fat is not a protein. Some people say I had peanut butter toast I had protein I said you had fat and carbohydrate, which is really in sugar. If you look at if you look at ingredient label, what it has the most of is what it's considered peanut butter, almond butter, all the butters, they have the most fat, so it's considered a fat with a little bit of protein. So women always tell me that they're eating a high protein breakfast. I'm like, That's not high protein. I'm sorry. And nobody eats just two tablespoons of peanut butter. Come on out. Let's be serious. Nobody's measuring those two tablespoons out.

Max Sturdivant/Dr. Fitness  8:57  
You know, I do avoid the ones that have sugar added. So as you're looking at the labels, I always recommend Yeah, if you're gonna grab it, if it's a peanut butter and nut butter that has added sugar pass, do a hard pass. Absolutely.

Pam Sherman  9:15  
Nobody needs sugar in anything. I've read

Max Sturdivant/Dr. Fitness  9:17  
this book by Gary Tubbs, why we get fat and what to do about it. And that combination of simple carbs and sugar in fat isn't so great. So they're in lies a lot of the challenges and like you were saying, if you're putting fat on toast, whether you have that simple carb, and then you have that fat combo. And for us as people it does set us up to gain fat

Pam Sherman  9:51  
and you're you're not even full an hour later you're you're hungry because you don't have protein with that. And it's as if people don't know what you're talking about. If you look at the nutrition label on a package of bread. It's mostly carbs and in your body carbs equal sugar. So that's, that's, that's all it is. So you're having a sugar and fat breakfast, which does not serve you energy wise or brain wise really to set you up for success. An

Max Sturdivant/Dr. Fitness  10:14  
interesting point, do you have recommendations when it comes to what to do instead? Because let's face it, the typical American breakfast of either cereal, even oatmeal, or pancakes, waffles, we get, you know, we can kind of go on and on and that way, but it's like stocked with sugar. So what what's your way of getting your clients around that?

Pam Sherman  10:45  
I tell them never to go down the cereal aisle, there is nothing good for you in this cereal aisle. Unless you are in an extra saucer, which makes you like a year to two years old and you put the little Cheerios in the extra saucer. After that age, the marketing lies they want you to think all that stuff is healthy for you. And it's not prioritize protein. It can be leftovers from last night could be leftover meatloaf. It could be eggs, it can be Turkey. I mean, it really can be anything. You always want to prioritize protein. And for a lot of my clients, women, they're busy protein shake first thing in the morning. That's easy. It's convenient. They don't have to think about you know what to put in it, just make it and then they can think about lunch and dinner separately. But it's easy. And it doesn't take up a lot of time. And most women I know are just they get up early and go go going. But avoiding oh my gosh, avoiding the doughnuts and the pancakes, all that stuff that doesn't do us our bodies, any good. In fact, Kellogg's made the slogan in the 70s Breakfast is the most important meal of the day. It's actually

Max Sturdivant/Dr. Fitness  11:44  
now see now that's really fascinating. So breaking that fast from the evening and not eating from that period. Breakfast isn't the most important. So I'm sorry, go ahead. Well,

Pam Sherman  11:58  
they made they made that because they wanted you to buy their cereal. The health people I follow Dr. Gabrielle Lyon just came out with a book forever strong, she is big into longevity and talking about muscle as your metabolic currency. She's saying you should break your fast with 40 to 50 grams of protein that your muscles first I know. And that's a lot. It's hard. For women. We are not natural meat eaters. I think like Fred Flintstone with a big Brontosaurus thing in his hand. We're not natural like that. So getting in like a serving and a half of a protein shake is the easiest way to do that. And that's setting your body up for success for the day. That's

Max Sturdivant/Dr. Fitness  12:34  
a really nice tip. So look at that, there alone. You are so happy. If you're still listening at this point, you got a great nugget. You know, you're gonna have to tell your friends to come back and check out this because you're gonna get tons of great nuggets. And in that kind of protein to break your fast. That's like a really great nugget. Yeah.

Pam Sherman  12:58  
It's It's huge, especially as we are aging. We actually need more than we did when we were younger. A teenager might not need as much as we do. But we I mean, I don't know how old you are. But as we are so

Max Sturdivant/Dr. Fitness  13:11  
anatomy Yeah, yeah, 60s come in fast. But

Pam Sherman  13:18  
we want to stay vital and strong. And

Max Sturdivant/Dr. Fitness  13:20  
so a lot of the things that you're talking about fortunately, I do. Um, and you know, I do salads with meat for breakfast. So people that have been listening, it's like I'll do tuna on top of a giant kale and cabbage salad. And I tend to like killing cabbage because they last so I can make a huge salad with kale and cabbage and use vinegar or like an apple cider vinegar and olive oil. And it'll last and that vinegar. And sometimes I like lime and lime juice. I've squeezed some fresh lime juice in it and it works as a severe change. So by the end of the week what I don't have left has been beautifully marinated and it's delicious but in a different way. So the options I mean we have are just unlimited what what you can do for breakfast once you switch the paradigm and I think that's a huge thing for most people to do is switch your breakfast paradigm.

Pam Sherman  14:27  
It is because I don't we don't watch commercials in my house but all the commercial Tonia that get you know, whatever Captain Crunch or whatever cereal is and that's the last thing you should be doing. You should never be having that for breakfast. And I don't know if you ever do this. I like to roast red cabbage. And then I let it cool and then put it in my salad

Max Sturdivant/Dr. Fitness  14:45  
with cauliflower to roast it till it's charred. And then throw it in a salad when it's cool and you know real simple to just toss it with a little bit of olive oil and salt and pepper and it's fantastic. Steak,

Pam Sherman  15:02  
I do a lot of salt and olive oil, I just it's so so well, now

Max Sturdivant/Dr. Fitness  15:04  
we're talking food, I'm gonna get hungry, and really easy to manage food recommendations. And so that's great. So it's not a struggle for people to do some of these things.

Pam Sherman  15:22  
It just really takes planning and changing your grocery shopping. And for most people, I would say you can't wait till the last minute or until when you're hangry. Because when you're hangry, you're never going to reach for the Apple or, you know, buy eggs, you're going to reach for something, you know, process that's in your cupboard. So planning ahead really does make a huge difference.

Max Sturdivant/Dr. Fitness  15:40  
There's just so many things, and you mentioned apples. You know, when people are hungry, and they have an apple option, a lot of times they don't even choose the apple option. Which means to me, they're probably really not legitimately hungry. You're feeding something other than appetite. So is there a test that that you can give people along those lines like, Hey, if you have this in your house, and you think that you're hungry, but you're not eating it? It's probably something that you're wanting to feed that to not really your hunger? Is there a litmus test for? Emotional eating?

Pam Sherman  16:25  
You kind of said it without saying it. Yeah. If you don't, if you're if you don't, or if you're really hungry, do you want some broccoli? Or an apple? If the answer is no, then figure out what you're actually doing? Are you tired? Are you stressed? Are you mad? Are you sad? Are you frustrated or lonely or bored? Because most women guys are emotional. Okay, so most people are emotional eaters. And there's a reason behind that. If you don't want to eat an apple, if you're tired, take a 15 minute nap. If you need fresh air go out for a 15 minute walk that really lifelong health and wellness depends on you. Feeding your body for health, not feeding your body for emotions, because you can look all over our country. And there's too many people eating their emotions, and it's going to kill them. No, definitely.

Max Sturdivant/Dr. Fitness  17:07  
And it's funny that you mentioned that because at times, I think guys are even more emotional than women. But less equipped to

Pam Sherman  17:21  
deal with it. We

Max Sturdivant/Dr. Fitness  17:23  
go from happy to angry. But it could be all kinds of other things in the middle that are creating that you like, but, but those are just easy go twos. We got two speeds.

Pam Sherman  17:39  
Go Yeah, you know, and it's so it's so interesting, right? You have to you're going 100 miles an hour or you're not or like I remember we had a man over clean the windows in my house one time my husband opens a fridge and the guy goes, dude, what do you do? And there's no movie playing in there. You know, it's in there. You open that refrigerator 15 times a day. And I always just bust out laughing. That's right. Like we all know what's in the fridge? saying they're looking?

Max Sturdivant/Dr. Fitness  18:04  
Oh my gosh, yes. Now that is a thing. I'm just looking. That's a really interesting point. Because hey, if you're just looking, what are you really looking for? If you know what I mean? It's there is a there's something to that. So that would be a sign I guess it's a sign of what do you think their Pm is the sign?

Pam Sherman  18:31  
What am I trying to fill the time let me look to see what I can find. I'm like you know what's in the fridge? Every week there's nothing Joe surprises in there really might

Max Sturdivant/Dr. Fitness  18:41  
be hiding something, you know, there might be a treat that you hid somewhere.

Pam Sherman  18:48  
When we were first married, my husband told me to hide the chocolate chips because he couldn't stop eating them. So I put him out there. Now I don't hide anything because I'm like, You're you're 57 if you want to eat something, you know, I

Max Sturdivant/Dr. Fitness  19:02  
find spouses are really tough in most cases. When you're, let's say, when you're working with the because I've I've worked with couples was tricky. And they tell on each other. Like, I'm like, accountability, accountability partnership. I think they just kind of got it misconstrued in some way. Um, but it's really interesting how competitive couples can get with when they get on wheat management, processes and programs together. What's your Have you had any success with that? What's your way of helping to manage? You know, bringing the couple to health? Not just one.

Pam Sherman  19:52  
I have not. Well, I haven't done couples before, but I do know that I work mostly with women, they have to have a spouse that supports them. I had one woman call me in tears one day that said, my husband brought home, my favorite candy. And I feel like he was threatened by her wanting to get healthy and lose weight. So you have what every new client, I'm like, tell me about your family. Tell me about your spouse, when they say they're supportive. Like, you're gonna be six. All you need is a successful spouse. I mean, really, you need somebody to say, Great job when you're working out, you know, what can I do for you? But couples, I mean, that's tough, especially because men, we love you and hate you, you always lose weight faster than the women do. So it can be very hard for the woman that is

Max Sturdivant/Dr. Fitness  20:35  
true couples in don't try quite as hard. And that's one of the drinks. He ate cookies last night, and his numbers are better. When did the alt so yeah, it happens? I wonder? Because having a supportive spouse. If you're in that environment in that situation, what are your thoughts about teaching your husband or your spouse to be more supportive, because I believe in some cases of perceived sabotage. I do think it's a lack of, of awareness, even in knowledge about what's going on, and even the role in it that you're playing.

Pam Sherman  21:34  
Yeah, I've had to tell many clients, you have to teach your partner how to love you without loving you with food. You used to want him to bring you peanut m&ms, you don't want that anymore. Tell him what you want. Because your partner wants to love you. So you have to teach them. So it's very important to do that. And

Max Sturdivant/Dr. Fitness  21:51  
in guys are an action kind of, you know, that's a big way of showing love. So that's a really interesting thing. So really teaching them. So any suggestions on how to teach a spouse to debt to bringing you cakes and cookies when you're on a program? How to even have awareness of it without upsetting them? Because they're thinking they're doing a really nice thing bringing you those donuts? But it's maybe not so nice. How do you nicely tell them the donuts are? A No, no, no, though, without hurting their little field,

Pam Sherman  22:29  
I think you just have. I think you just have to say I you know, I'm not happy in my body, and I want to get healthier. And to do that I need to take a break. For now. of cakes cookie, whatever the sweets are, or the chips I had to I actually had a friend who told her husband stopped bringing those chips home, I can't stop eating them. Please don't bring them into the house. If you want them, please eat them out of the house. What you can do to pamper me, you can take me out for a nice coffee, you can go for a walk with me. We can go to the mall and pick out whatever I mean. Just find different ways but lay it out what you don't want. Because men are simple. No offense, guys. They want to be told what to do. Please don't do this. Please do this. Please bring me home flowers instead of cookies or cakes. I would love flowers in my house. How easy is that go local grocery store to get that done. And just say I love you. And I want to love me as much as I love you. So I need to make some changes to make me happy. And I hold on support me along the way. Yeah.

Max Sturdivant/Dr. Fitness  23:31  
Jen, nice and gentle. Yeah. So I mean, I can't believe that we are coming to the end of our time together. Because I could continue like this forever.

Pam Sherman  23:45  
I No, no. Seriously, I

Max Sturdivant/Dr. Fitness  23:47  
do want to thank you for for doing this and just being a part of this show. And is there something that you'd like to share that we didn't get a chance to touch on yet?

Pam Sherman  24:04  
Yes, I created a course this last fall called Love Yourself to health. After working with women for 27 years, many do not like themselves. Many tell me the things I hate this, this and this. And what I would always do as a trainer as I would say, stop. Please tell me three things you like about yourself. And I'd have women like tongue tie they couldn't name one good thing about themselves now. You and I both know as coaches mindset is everything. So my love yourself to help is six short audio courses five to seven minutes each with homework action steps to do at the end of each one. Because women cannot change until they change their mindset. It's the you need to put the oxygen mask on you first you can't take care of everyone else in your life and leave yourself for last. So that just came out. It's on my website, the perfect balanced out guru and for you Your audience, if they want to save $100 They could have love all in caps 100 to save $100 off that because it's it's really my mission to help as many women as I can on their health journey. And it was just started mindset.

Max Sturdivant/Dr. Fitness  25:13  
Hey, and if you missed anything that Pam just said, it's going to be in the show notes. So you will be able to see this. So don't worry, just go to the show notes and Pam's information will be there. And the discount code will be there as well. So you will not miss it. So if you're driving, don't pull over now and try to write it down. It's not necessary, you will be able to get it later. Um, thanks again for joining us. I'm really happy that you are here and doing what you're doing in the world because it's needed. Oh, excuse me.

Pam Sherman  25:49  
Thank you. Same Same with you,

Max Sturdivant/Dr. Fitness  25:51  
everyone in the world. And it's appreciated. And I want to also thank you listeners for tuning in to another episode of Your Health Moment. And just taking the time for yourself to have this moment to tap into what you're doing with your wellness and where you are on your wellness journey. I look forward to speaking to you again next week. So take care, and bye for now. Thank you for listening to this episode of Your Health Moment podcast. If you enjoyed what you've heard, you can visit our website, your for past episodes, show notes, and all the resources that we mentioned on the show. Feel free to connect with me on social media to send me a DM and let me know what your thoughts are about the episodes that you've been listening to. And don't be shy about requesting any other show topics that you might like to explore.

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