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Body Transformation: Her Own Private Paleo

Sabrina went old school, as in Paleolithic, for her transformation. This modern-day cavewoman can now go clubbin' 20 pounds lighter!

Vital Stats

Name: Sabrina Katz

Sabrina Katz Sabrina Katz


145 lbs
Body Fat:


127 lbs
Body Fat:

Why I Got Started

Physically: I found it exhausting to walk up a flight of stairs. I was tired all the time and needed 4 cups of coffee to get started on my day. I would avoid events that required shorts or swimsuits. I would avoid any physical exercise because it was tiresome, not fun, and I felt inadequate.

Emotionally: I had terribly low self-esteem and hated my body. I felt deep depression, sleeplessness, and anxiety. I hated my job (not because of the job) and my social life (not because of my friends). My attitude about life in general was in the tank.

I was introduced to semi-private personal training and weight lifting at All Strength Training in Chicago. I had always hated sports, gyms, and aerobics classes (I couldn't keep up with the movements in step classes and really disliked sweating in public during a spinning class). Semi-private training sessions did not feel like a class where I couldn't keep up. And the personal training helped me learn the movements and the reasons for doing them.

During weightlifting, I was able to learn simple movements one at a time and put them together for a good workout. Within one month of weightlifting under the guidance of a personal trainer, I felt a vast improvement in my breathing in general and I didn't feel like eating ice cream all day. In the second month I started to see change in my body.

My goal was to lose ½ inch from my hips in that month and I did - that was enough to motivate me to continue. My big goal was to lose 8 pounds and 1 inch from my hips. I sold myself so short - since starting I have lost nearly 20 pounds, 15% body fat, and over 4 inches from my hips.

How I Did It

I have been working out consistently at All Strength Training in Chicago for 2 years. I work out 3-4 times every week and I take body weight and resistance band workouts with me when I travel. I have completely changed the way I eat as a result of gradually removing objectionable foods from my diet and replacing them with muscle building proteins and healthy fruits and vegetables. I sleep better. I only drink one cup of coffee each day.

This summer I participated in 2 bodybuilding competitions (bikini division) and placed 4th in my second one. I have energy to run around with my nephews and I look great in a bikini! I feel great and love my workouts. I never thought I could be this girl. Heading into my 40's in the best shape of my life is such a blessing.


Intra Workout:
Post Workout:


I eat a Paleo diet. This means I stay away from all dairy, wheat and grains, and sugar. I eat a high protein diet with many good fats, fresh fruits and vegetables. I drink 80-100 ounces of water a day. No sodas or juices. Once a week I have what my trainers call a "cheat meal" where I start with 6-8 ounces of protein then I eat anything I want.

This includes dairy, wheat, sugar, etc. I find that my "cheat meals" prevent cravings throughout the week and make it easy to stick to the diet. Also, my body gets a reminder that it needs to keep a high metabolism burning the fat and sugars.

One week before a competition I eliminate all fruits and starchy vegetables and stick to just green vegetables. But I keep an ample amount of fats and my volume of food stays the same.

Meal 1:

Meal 2: Post Workout

  • V8 pomegranate berry fusion

    V8 pomegranate berry fusion


  • whey protein

    whey protein

    1 scoop

  • water



Meal 3:

Meal 4:

Meal 5:

Meal 6:


Day 1: Hamstrings/Chest/Abs




Resume normal sets; reps:


Day 2: Quads/Back/Calves




Resume normal sets; reps:


Day 3: Rest
Day 4: Hamstrings/Chest/Shoulders




Cardio: 15 min HIIT, alternating

Day 5: Rest
Day 6: Quads/Back/Calves/Abs



Resume normal sets; reps:


Day 7: Rest

Suggestions for Others

  • Get rid of your scale! Weight is so not important if you are looking for a true transformation. I weigh myself once every 2 weeks at the gym. Muscle weighs more than fat and it sure is sexier than a lower body weight.
  • Get a trainer or make a commitment to a work out partner. Be accountable for your weekly workouts. I worked out with the same 2 guys 3 times a week for a year. If I didn't show up I had to answer to their badgering and name calling.
  • Food. No one can work out enough to balance out a crappy diet. One year into my program I changed my diet from healthy vegetarian to the Paleo diet with a dramatic increase in protein. After that point my transformation was rocketed into another dimension.
  • Be patient. There are plenty of quick fix diets and 90 day programs out there, but this kind of transformation takes time. Changing one small thing at a time will help you to stay the new course and not "fall back into old habits".

Competition History

  • NPC Illinois State May 2011
  • NABBA 2011 Illinois Cup June 2011 - 4th in Bikini Division
  • Illinois Raw Power Challenge Dec 2011 - 2nd in my weight class

Photographic Credit:
Don Bersano
Reuben Katz

Trainer Credit:
Zach Trowbridge, Christine Trowbridge, and Sergio Rivera of All Strength Training Chicago

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