Have you ever sat across from someone who is clearly a professional on the topic you are struggling with and currently seeking guidance for?
Say you are talking to a financial advisor about how you want to retire but do not know where the money will come from to save…you might think they have it all figured out and can’t relate to your situation. What about a nutritionist or nutrition coach? A client comes in and talks about how they can’t seem to drink enough water. They sit across from an athletic looking coach who eats all organic whole foods, bikes to work, and drinks a gallon of water a day. How can the coach relate to their client? How can the client relate to their coach?
I am the nutrition coach in this situation and I had an interesting discussion with a close friend of mine about how my clients may have a hard time relating to me because they think “I have it all figured out” when it comes to nutrition and fitness. This was a perfect opportunity for me to reflect and see if this was true…
What I came up with might surprise you.
We all struggle with food, movement/fitness, drinking enough water, and overall wellness. Everyone. Including nutrition coaches. Including myself!
I have struggled with food for as long as I can remember. When I was a kid, I struggled with sugar and would sneak fruit snacks, candy, donuts, pop and other sugary treats behind my parents back. I would consume whatever I could find until I got sick. When I got older, it was a struggle to control my portions. I would try to out eat anyone I was around. I would fill up with as much food whenever I didn’t have to pay or was at a family gathering. These struggles just don’t go away.
To be honest, I still struggle with my portion sizes and sugar. If I start eating it is a struggle to stop…can you relate? Picture this: it’s late at night and you are tired from work so you turn on a Netflix series. There is chocolate in the kitchen calling your name and popcorn ready to accompany you. I can relate!
If I still struggle as a nutrition coach, what’s the difference between me and my clients? If they will always struggle, what’s the point?
The great thing about struggling is you get stronger; you learn, you grow, you adapt or you don’t.
Yes, I still struggle; however, I have a system and habits in place to keep me growing from my struggles instead of losing myself in the struggle. What are these systems and habits? Here are my secrets and I will give it to you for free:
- ENVIRONMENT – Over the last decade, I have created an environment to support my healthy lifestyle. My family no longer offers me sweet treats at gatherings. I no longer keep sweets in the house and I have a support system of family and friends aware of my struggles and goals that will hold me accountable.
- SYSTEMS – I have systems in place so I am successful. The ones relating to food are:
- I go grocery shopping on Thursdays. It’s marked every week in my calendar so nothing else gets scheduled. I go weekly so there is not a surplus of food lying around.
- When I finish using a food item I immediately write it on my grocery list.
- When I eat all of my cooked protein, I get a new one out to thaw from the freezer
- I cut all my vegetables on a separate day from when I meal prep
- I set aside 2 hours a week to cook my food on Sundays.
- HABITS – I have also developed some pretty great habits over the last decade.
- I carry a water bottle with me everywhere, even to the couch for my Netflix show.
- I schedule movement into my day, every day. It is a priority.
- I tend to eat before I go anywhere so I am not tempted to overeat.
- I include vegetables with every meal.
Even with the systems and habits I’ve developed, I still struggle. The point is I worked really hard on my systems, habits, and environment over the last decade so when I do eat some chocolate chips it doesn’t turn into a complete derailment of my life. My partner checks in on me, my friends at the gym hold me accountable, and my weekly grocery shopping keeps me from stocking up. And honestly, my body has adjusted to a place where it does not feel good when I eat too many sweets or too much food in one sitting and it tells me to please STOP!!
The struggle is real, but so is the plan. The plan can be leveraged by anyone: work on creating a healthy environment, solid systems, and sustainable habits around food and fitness.
I can relate to my clients because I was in their position. I struggled with nutrition and fitness because I didn’t have a supportive environment, systems, or good habits. I can relate because I overeat. I snack late at night. I skip the gym when I am tired. I eat cake.
The difference? I bring a decade of knowledge and experience on not only coaching myself, but also years coaching others through their struggles and helping them to develop their own systems and habits.
I would love to coach you through your struggles so you can grow and flourish in the ways you wish to in life. Let’s work together to develop a system and habits that will support a healthy lifestyle.
I hope to talk to you soon,