Last July I started working towards my certificate in health coaching. I had been searching for my next career, trying to find something that allowed me to follow me heart. I needed something I was passionate about but that could also make some money. I had been searching since I was a freshman in college with nothing to show for it. I had a good job with nice benefits and a steady paycheck but I knew I needed something different.
Thankfully, one day I stumbled upon the concept of Health Coaching and IIN (Institute for Integrative Nutrition). I was immediately drawn to the school. Like all good researchers, I did my homework and compared IIN to many other schools. I looked at degrees, certificates, health coaching, nutritional counseling, dieticians, nutritionists, you name it, I probably considered it. In the end I chose IIN and am beyond happy that I did.
I enrolled at the Institute for Integrative Nutrition in July expecting my career to change. I was already a health nut and loved to learn about healthy foods, herbs, exercises, etc. I figured I was pretty healthy already and that I had a good grasp on “health stuff.” I had no idea how much my lifestyle, health and overall perspective towards health would change as well. And it happened so smoothly. I didn’t feel like I had been dunked under water and suddenly had to make drastic changes. Instead I almost didnt notice it. I got healthier and my lifestyle improved bit by bit. They were changes that lasted, changes that I could be consistent with.
If you’re interested in the school, you probably want some details. So let me chunk it down for ya:
-The program is 1 year long and you graduate with a certificate. Being certified as a health coach gives you SO much more potential to succeed. There are tons of health coaches out there that are not certified. The IIN certificate sets you apart with a strong, reputable school behind your name.
-IIN also offers another business-oriented program that is FREE to alumni. It is called the Immersion program and it is 6 months long. You can do Immersion 1x/year as many times as you want as an alumni.
-It possible to do it while working. I was working 50+ hours per week when I started the program. I also moved across the country at the halfway point of the program and again right after graduating.
-Its mobile. You can learn from anywhere there is internet. You can even work out while doing some school work.
-Its versatile. My classmates had many different backgrounds and experiences. Some were doctors, others dieticians, while still others didn’t even have a college degree yet. ANYONE can do this program and succeed.
-The community. What would I do without my IIN community? You are forever connected to a wealth of knowledge. And I mean forever. The school keeps you connected with alumni information and they have facebook groups that are exploding with useful information – both health and business related.
-Payment plans. So you cant afford to pay for all of the tuition at one time? Not a problem. The school will set you up on a payment plan that works for you.
-You choose who you want to work with (and for!). You can work with kids, women, men, people with Crohns or busy businessman. You can also work for someone if you choose to, like a doctor. Or you can get an office in a spa or gym. The possibilties really become endless. IIN equips you to do any and all of these options.
-IIN addresses Primary Foods. Primary foods are the ways we are nourished aside from actual food, such as, our relationships, exercise, having a spiritual practice and enjoying your career. These 4 elements make your training at IIN better than any training on which foods are best to eat. If someone is in a toxic relationship it doesnt matter how much kale they eat. Their body, mind and spirit will still suffer. IIN teaches you how to address these aspects of life and how to coach people to improve them to achieve health in all areas of life.
So what do I DO as a Certified Health Coach anyway?
Well, that depends on what day it is and what my mood is like 😉 Just kidding. There are perks to being your own boss though. I can adapt and change my programs for clients as I see fit. I control my income and my schedule. I can offer cleanses, I can hold webinars, I can work in-person or long-distance with clients. I have control and boy it is nice.
My days usually consist of one/some of the following:
-Working with clients (usually over the phone since that is how I set up my business)
-Marketing my business
-Researching, reading and learning more about health (especially the endocrine system since I focus on thyroid and adrenals)
-Creating new programs for my clients
-Hosting webinars or events
Every day is different depending on what I am focused on. There is variety, which I like, but I also create routines so that I can be consistent in my business.
What exactly IS a Health Coach?
Health coaches bridge the gap between doctors and patients. A doctor diagnoses and prescribes medication or other lifestyle changes. Then you are usually left to your own devices to make those changes happen. Hire a health coach and you suddenly have your own private cheerleader, a cheerleader armed with resources and knowledge to make your life easier. You have someone to provide the support and resources that you need to make consistent changes and to keep you accountable. It is like having a healthy-lifestyle mentor that personalizes everything to your particular situation.
For example, when a doctor tells a Hashimoto’s patient to go gluten-free the patient usually walks out blind-sided. What the heck is gluten? Then they quickly realize most of the foods in their kitchen are no longer “allowed.” They stick it out for a while, surviving on discipline and then soon enough, they give in. Breads, pastas and pizza call out to them and suddenly “going gluten free” is no longer an option.
With a health coach on your side, the scenario changes drastically. The health coach guides the client through what foods are gluten-free, what CAN be eaten and where to buy foods that will satisfy and nourish them without gluten. They provide recipes and sometimes even food samples to try. And they are always there to keep the client on track when the cookie dough starts calling their name. They guide the client to make small, consistent steps that are manageable. The step-by-step approach means that changes will last. Instead of drastic changes that usually only last a month, these small changes make a big impact and can last a lifetime.
A health coach keeps you accountable and gives you someone to ask questions to and vent to when it gets tough. Suddenly, you have someone on your side. Someone dedicated just to YOU and your health. Can you remember the last time you had someone like that around? Do you want to be that person for others?
Becoming a health coach is rewarding and affects our entire world. Helping people get healthier makes them happier – we all want a more joy-filled planet, dont we? It also means we can save lives and the planet. Yes, save lives. Obesity and diabetes are killing people at rapid rates. Thyroid statistics show epidemic numbers. People need support. The world of nutrition can be confusing and scary. Something has got to change and health coaches can make an impact. Are you ready to join the movement?
To learn more about my business check out my website:
To learn more about IIN click on the button below: