See my last post for My story Part 1.
This is the second part of the story. In the middle of my counting macros and heavy lifting phase (aka obsessive weighing and tracking of food, and lifting weight that caused injury) I decided that I wanted to go back to school for my Master’s degree in Health and Wellness coaching through an online program at Creighton University. As I started my program there, one of the first concepts introduced was Whole person health – the idea that our health is truly the sum of all of the parts of us. Health isn’t obtained at a certain weight or through a specific nutrition plan, but it is reached with a balanced focus on a lot of different areas. So with that in mind I took courses on nutrition, but also physical exercise, sleep and stress to name a few. I also focused on behavior modification and what really happens when we are trying to set goals and change habits for good. I will be forever grateful for my program for many reasons. But the three key reasons might surprise you. The first is that my studies helped me focus on the science and research aspect of any health claim. I know how to analyze and take apart any research study or claim and figure out if there is any validity to it. The second part is that I was so busy writing 10-20 page research papers, creating extensive projects, and coaching individuals, that I had to let something drop. And I learned that the hard way. I really tried to keep the macro counting and heavy gym sessions going and I just kept cutting into my sleep.
But now I knew what I was doing to my body. And when the results that I expected no longer were happening with my body – I knew exactly why. So as a busy graduate school student, mom of 4 and full-time employee, I knew something had to give.
So I stopped counting macros. I scaled back on the gym sessions a little. I just assumed I’d pick it all up after I finished my degree. I really thought that I had found the solution and I wasn’t going to give up that easily. And the third key piece was the spiritual aspect. I had not recognized my spirituality in my health up until that point.
Attending a Jesuit University it was great to incorporate that aspect as a part of my whole person health. And I honestly attribute that piece to setting me on my current trajectory.
So hopefully I haven’t lost you yet. Still with me? I promise, I’m almost done. So, one day I decided that if I couldn’t control my eating like I’d done before I’d do an “easy” cleanse to help reset my body. I’m almost embarrassed to admit that I attempted the cayenne pepper, maple syrup, lemonade cleanse. But within 2 days I was magically down almost 10 lbs. Of course I was exhausted and couldn’t imagine keeping it up for 2 weeks. At the end of the second day, I knelt in prayer with my 4 children. I am a very religious person, but like I said, I hadn’t incorporated my spirituality into my health journey much. In that moment of prayer, I had the distinct impression that I needed to stop what I was doing – the cleanse, the obsession with my body… all of it.
So I did.
It was just a profound moment that I knew I had to listen. And I’m so glad that I did. Eventually I even scaled back on the workouts too – enough injury and you start listening to your body even more. So in the last 6 months of my master’s program I started to completely rethink my purpose in becoming a health coach. I was no longer focused on getting clients to a specific weight at any cost.
I am here to help clients get to a place of body respect, a healthy relationship with food and movement that they enjoy… and a place of true whole person health.
So, as part of this journey, I focused my remaining studies on this idea of helping women realize that they are more than just a number on the scale. I studied and received my NASM personal trainer certification so I could better understand the fundamental principles of safe healthy movement. And finally I received my Intuitive Eating Counselor certification. So I am ready to work with you – tired mamas who are ready to stop the hamster wheel of diets and restriction, who know that there has to be more than counting and tracking. There has to be more to your health than focusing so much on your outward appearance. Who want desperately to worry about more than the image they see in the mirror. Let’s get started on this journey together! I’m so excited to share what I’ve learned. Let’s go!
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
I’m a certified Intuitive Eating Counselor and NASM Certified Personal Trainer, and the owner and creator of Spendlove Coaching.
My own wellness journey led me to getting my Master’s Degree in Health and Wellness Coaching from Creighton University – Go Blujays!
I help my clients discover that they are the experts of themselves. Using the tools learned inside my program and during coaching sessions, clients learn how to shift their mindset, taking back the power they have lost to dieting and diet culture