Advocating Women’s Strength with Steph Gaudreau- EP021

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Most women are guilty of developing a picture in their mind of the ‘perfect body’ or latching on to an unrealistic goal weight – and believing that they cannot be happy until they have realized that image or hit that number on the scale. The time has come to shift that belief system, to transform our relationship with exercise and nutrition, to focus on what our bodies can achieve – to stop fighting our bodies and harness our strength.




Steph Gaudreau is a strength coach and nutritionist who is on a mission to help women find their strength. Her blog, Stupid Easy Paleo, explores the principles of a Paleo lifestyle, and her podcast, Harder to Kill Radio, helps optimize health and wellness through interviews with experts in fitness, nutrition, sleep and mindset. She has also created an annual online event, the Women’s Strength Summit, to educate and inspire women to build physical, emotional, mental and spiritual strength.

Steph was a successful high school science teacher for twelve years before taking a leave of absence to start her own business helping women accept their bodies and embrace their power. Steph is uniquely qualified to help women feel capable and strong because of her own difficult journey from fighting her body and never feeling good enough to focusing on what she was capable of as she hit milestone after milestone. Today she shares her take on having a goal weight, her experience with body shaming on social media, and her advice around creating a customized Paleo nutrition track. Learn Steph’s comprehensive definition of strength and get inspired to embrace your own strength of mind, body and spirit!

Topics Covered

[0:50] Steph’s journey to becoming a thought leader in fitness and nutrition space

  • Sports important part of life since childhood
  • Digestive problems at ten (blamed on hormones)
  • Stopped listening to body
  • Gained weight in college, tried every diet and exercise regimen
  • Started racing mountain bikes in 2009
  • Friends encouraged to try Paleo diet
  • Significant improvement in energy
  • Started sharing recipes on biking blog
  • Founded food blog, Stupid Easy Paleo
  • Took leave of absence from teaching to try entrepreneurship
[9:06] How Steph finally learned to accept her body

  • Internalized negative teasing, ‘something is wrong with my body’ narrative
  • Began to compete in mountain bike races, felt big by comparison
  • Transitioned to triathlons and got down to 58 kg, still unhappy
  • Joined CrossFit gym and learned how to strength train
  • Liked feeling stronger, began to focus on what she was capable of
[15:10] Steph’s take on having a goal weight

  • Ask yourself, ‘Where did that number come from?’
  • Low weight is not synonymous with health
  • Spend less time fighting your natural body weight
  • Steph gained 30 lbs through CrossFit as muscle mass returned
  • Health and wellness skyrocketed
[17:54] Steph’s experience with body shaming via social media

  • Negative comment posted on Instagram picture
  • Recognized that younger version of self would have been devastated
  • Wrote blog post in response to body shaming
  • Highlights hyper-obsession with other people’s bodies
  • Online anonymity allows people to be hateful
  • Reveals double standard (either too vain or not trying hard enough)
[24:33] The validation aspect of social media

  • Single negative comment overrides hundreds of compliments
  • Value cannot be tied to praise, online support
  • Must realize worthiness regardless of performance in gym, success at work
[28:28 ] Steph’s definition of strength

  • Resiliency is key component
  • Can you weather tough situations?
  • Ability to learn and grow from adversity
  • Allow self to be human, feel pain
  • Tragedy doesn’t break you
  • Must experience the struggle to get to the light
[31:56] How Steph conceived of the Women’s Strength Summit

  • Idea for online event in 2015
  • Grew to encompass mind, body and spirit
  • 2017 event included 24 speakers (all women)
  • Covers topics like birth control, menopause
  • Women crave advice from trusted sources
[37:20] Steph’s advice around creating a customized nutrition track

  • Develop personalized diet, sustainable for long-term
  • Research intuitive eating
  • Consider gradual approach to diet change
  • Incorporate healthy swap (i.e.: replace white rice with cauliflower rice, soda with sparkling water)
  • Add a vegetable to your plate
  • Don’t force yourself to eat things you find unpalatable
  • Give body time to adjust as eliminate processed foods
[43:27] Steph’s #1 tip for women

  • Pay attention to protein intake
  • RDA of 55-60 g is bare minimum
  • Good dose in morning improves mood, helps sleep at night, reduces cravings

Learn More About Steph Gaudreau

Stupid Easy Paleo Blog

Harder to Kill Podcast

Resources Mentioned

The Paleo Diet for Athletes: The Ancient Nutritional Formula for Peak Athletic Performance by Loren Cordain and Joe Friel

Mind Your Own Body Blog Post

Women’s Strength Summit

Intuitive Eating

The Paleo Athlete: A Beginner’s Guide to Real Food for Performance by Stephanie Gaudreau




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