Valuable Lessons on Nutrition and Wellness from Coach EJ

In April I had the opportunity to attend the Gym Accelerator Summit hosted by Healthy Steps Nutrition.

It was a conference for gym owners and nutrition and wellness coaches. 

It was amazing to be in a room surrounded by like minded people, people who have chosen careers to help people become healthier, fitter, and enable them to lead full lives. As coaches we work toward helping people move the dial on the continuum of their lives from sickness toward wellness and it is exciting work! 

Health starts inside the gym and we are the solution for preventative healthcare. 

During a main session we were asked to consider what problems our gym helps to solve. 

I was delighted to come up with a list for Fit2Live which included the following: 
  • Community
  • Functional movement training (aka training for life)
  • Holistic approach to nutrition
  • Classes that are designed to be inclusive for all ages, sizes and peoples
  • Personalized care in an industry that often leaves populations out

We are here to help change habits and change lives and I think the success stories that we post week after week attest to that fact. 

One breakout session I attended was about building a mental skill set to increase resilience and avoid burnout. Resilience is not continuing to push through but rather it is the ability to manage stress, work through obstacles and effectively come through on the other side. It is recognizing when it is time to connect, relax and do something that brings refreshment and it is not normalizing hustle, grind and stress. 

Dr. Christina Migliara gave us the following 3 tips: 
  1. Be authentic with others and with yourself – don’t be a people pleaser! 
  2. Disconnect from your devices to foster creativity. 
  3. Connect with people at least once a week, face to face whenever possible. 
Following these tips will lead to increased mental capacity, strength and awareness. 

Another breakout session I attended was a great reminder that we are the sum of the 5 people we spend the most time with. If we spend time with people who value health and movement and living their best life for the long term, we will reflect that. If we spend time with people who complain a lot, who relieve stress in unhealthy ways and who spend more time in a negative thinking space, we will reflect that as well. We were encouraged to think of who we surround ourselves with and if these people are helping us to grow into the people we want to be or if they are roadblocks. 

There were a few sessions that were just for nutrition coaches. The dietitians at Healthy Steps Nutrition reminded us that it really is the simple changes that make the most impact and the habits that stick are the ones that work. 

The things we work on in our nutrition challenges and in our one on one coaching sessions are the fundamentals to lifelong health. 
  • Eat 3-5 servings of veggies per day
  • Eat protein with every meal and snack
  • Drink 60-80 oz of water per day
  • Aim for 7+ hours of sleep per night 
  • Prioritize moving for at least 30 minutes per day 

Plate method and using the hand method for portion sizes are the best tools we have for consistency because you can do them literally anywhere. 

Plate method ensures we get all of the nutrients we need in each meal (protein + carbohydrates + healthy fats). 

Hand method for portion sizes is easier than measuring because you bring your hands with you everywhere. 

A fist is a serving of veggies, your palm is a serving of protein as well as a serving of starch and your thumb is a serving of healthy fat. 

One hack that the dietitian shared was to use smaller plates!

If the servings you put on your plate look small remember the size of a normal plate used to be the plates we now use as salad plates. As our plate size has increased, so have our portion sizes and so have our waistlines. 

There were many other helpful sessions including one on navigating hormone health and one with tools to help clients who may be experiencing a plateau.  I have pages of notes that I will continue to go over that will help me be a better coach and hopefully translate to me being able to help more people move consistently in the direction of their goals. 

Over and over the speakers emphasized that we are on the front lines of helping people live longer, fuller lives and everything worthwhile in life is simple but not easy.

Keeping our eyes on the long term game and not being distracted by the short term wins or losses will help us live our best lives. 

It was a great education filled weekend.

I’m excited to pass my tips and takeaways to you all soon!


Interested in improving your health and wellness habits outside of the gym?



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