Sugar (Part 2): More Sugar = Less Burn

In Memphis where I live, a common southern saying (along with “bless her heart” which translates to “I really don’t like her and think she’s slow”) is “she’s sweet as sugar” or “she’s sweet as molasses.” Now these sweet sayings truly are compliments and when you receive them, “bat your lashes” and attempt your best southern drawl. BUT, remember they are referring to your disposition and not what you are consistently shoving in your mouth.

If they are saying you are “sweet as sugar” based on your eating habits then you are almost destined for a spare tire in the bikini-zone.

So, part two of our sugar blog is, “lots of sugar = less burn.” I want to focus a moment on our constant training as women, be it yoga, pilates, cardio or weights… and how sugar plays such a tremendous role in our results (or lack of).

We have busy lives–children, husbands, careers, passions–we shouldn’t have to endure wasting workout time with no results. So how do we prevent this?

If you are going to invest time in your physique, then diet has to play a roll. You may have heard this before, but your body shape is 80% diet, 10% genetics and 10% training. Now, due to how many minutes I log sweating on my equipment and in the “spread eagle” pose in the fuzzy straps on the pilates Cadillac, I’m going to give us the inspirational–70% diet, 20% training and 10% genetics. Regardless, diet is key. As an aside, this also shows us that we can’t blame our genetics for the size of our derriere (however this is a whole other topic to discuss).

If you want to burn fat DO NOT EAT SIMPLE CARBS OR SUGAR BEFORE YOUR WORKOUT. If you workout in the morning, do not eat sugar before you go to bed. You will be working to burn it off in the morning. Just don’t do it. It boosts your glycogen stores so when you hop on your cardio equipment of choice, the only thing you will be burning is the sugar you ate hours earlier. IT ISN’T WORTH IT. You will spin your wheels in vain.

So what is the best solution? I say trick your sweet tooth. If you crave something sweet before you work out, go for a piece of fruit, berries, vegetables or a low-glycemic protein shake (EAS carb control is great). I never endorse protein bars because I have been a slave to them for years and they just mess with body balance. But if you want to take a portion of one… go for it. It’s better than the rice cakes or saltines many consume thinking they are eating healthy because they’re “fat free.” Fat Free is so “early 1990s.” When people say, “Look, we can eat this. It says fat free.” I want to say, “Do you still listen to Color Me Bad too?”

Do me a favor: substitute water, nuts, whole fruit, and vegetables in place of the high-glycemic and packaged foods you are used to for two weeks. I want to know if there is a difference in your 1) cravings 2) workouts 3) digestion. I have a feeling it will be positive on all three counts. Thanks for listening. And as always, keep counting.


  1. Michelle says

    Great Blog–it is motivating me to eat better and work out on our new treadmills.Michelle

  2. Asheaon Squirrel says

    HAHAHA! "Bless her heart mean's I don't like her and she's slow" HAHAH LOLOL. That's CLASSIC.I'm SO glad you reminded me of the importance of eating non-sugary foods. I love eating rice cakes but I'm trying to increase my workout output and eating that extra sugar isn't going to help! Thanks Chelsea! (p.s. two beads over this week for my running/yoga at the gym! I'm looking to move over at LEAST 5!!)

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