Last weekend in Chicago we experienced some spring snow. Yes snow in the middle of April! A couple days later, the temperatures rose again into the 60’s. The interesting thing is, the day after the snowfall I was walking around and noticed the flowers were still blooming and hadn’t died from this crazy weather we had. It made me realize how resilient nature can be. That thought reminded me of the parallel of how my clients build resilience through the process of understanding and uncovering their relationship around food.read more
In a recent workshop I ran, we talked about the common themes that lead to self-sabotage and lacking willpower. After sharing some of the themes, tools and strategies, one of the women asked what tips I typically give people when they eat something out of alignment with their goals so they reach for the healthier option. Since my role as a Health Coach is not to give specific tips and tricks of how to avoid eating something you would consider indulgent, I asked if she would be willing to share an example.read more
When I started my journey to become a Health Coach I decided to start working with my own Health Coach, Ali Shapiro. Even though I had lost 60-pounds and was maintaining my weight, my thoughts were consumed by food and constantly thinking about when I was going to eat next. It scared me to think that I could possibly get hungry and be ill prepared without any food on hand. I thought there had to be a better way other than the exhausting mental gymnastics. I had done one of the leading weight loss programs for years with success in getting down to my goal weight. However I was missing one piece of the puzzle.read more
Through the years of my own self-discovery, one of the biggest insights I’ve had is that while we may be on a journey with our weight, we never fully arrive. For years I would focus on how life would be different and better when I hit my goal weight. However, in 2008 that dream came true, yet life wasn’t easier and I still wasn’t happy with my body or my weight. In the past I have opened up about my challenges with maintaining my weight and I fully admit that I still have challenges. In all honesty it’s difficult to admit that I still have my struggles. However, I want to share more about my journey in case you feel the same way so you know you aren’t alone.read more
I recently sat down with one client and interviewed her to share more about her experience of working with a Health Coach for the first time. It can be hard to make changes when it comes to working toward your health and weight goals so this is a candid insight into Lisa’s journey. Please leave a comment below if you can relate with any part of Lisa’s story.
Laura: Was there anything that led you to decide to make changes to your diet?
Lisa: I had been experiencing a lot of stress and felt like my life was spiraling out of control. In January 2016 I woke up one morning feeling my heart racing and thought I was having a heart attack. I went to work that day but only made it through part of the day when I decided to go to urgent care. I was diagnosed with having a panic attack. I knew at that time that something needed to change.
Laura: Why did you decide to start working with a Health Coach?
Lisa: After the panic attack episode I wasn’t sure what do next. I had heard about Health Coaching but was skeptical on if that was the right approach for me. I scheduled a session with Laura and after our conservation I realized she would be able to help guide me to make lifestyle changes to control my stress.
Laura: What has been most beneficial about working with a Health Coach?
Lisa: I have changed to eating a more natural and clean diet while reducing refined sugars and processed foods. As a result my stress level has decreased and my sugar cravings have reduced significantly. I have also lost 25 pounds so far and have noticed that I am sleeping better. I used to take naps on weekends during the day but I find that I no longer need them because I have so much more energy during the day now.
Laura: What has been the biggest challenge/obstacle?
Lisa: The biggest challenge for me was realizing that a change needed to be made and how to take that first step. I had a fear of the one-on-one interaction and was concerned that I would be judged or criticized. However, after my first session I realized that was not the approach you take and was immediately put to ease.
Laura: Do you have any advice for others who are considering making some habit changes?
Lisa: My advice would be to be gentle on yourself. There are days when I may not be perfect but I know that my goal is lifelong health and a detour every now and then is not the end of the world. I still enjoy eating out but make better choices to ensure I don’t feel deprived. If I feel like I have a set back we talk it through and I leave the conversation feeling more positive. I’m still learning how to be gentle with myself but have made a lot of progress thanks to you!
About Laura B. Folkes:
Laura B. Folkes is a graduate of the Institute for Integrative Nutrition (IIN) and is a Certified Holistic Health Coach. She supports busy adults to take back control of their eating, successfully navigate life with food intolerances, reduce cravings and/or make sustainable changes without deprivation. After successfully losing 60 pounds and working through her own emotional relationship with food, Laura recognizes there are many factors keeping individuals from sticking to what they know works but it’s her mission to help others overcome these factors to become healthier and happier.
Many people spend years trying the latest fad diet with hopes of finding the “magic pill” that will help put an end to their quest for weight loss. The issue with these diets is that while they work from some, everybody is different and there isn’t one approach that works for everyone. To support this, an article was recently published on BBCNews.com about research that is currently being conducted in Israel.
Below is an overview of the article but it’s also definitely worth a read:
- Researchers are in the process of monitoring 1,000 people to see exactly how their bodies react to food.
- The study is finding that what may be considered a “good” food for one person may be another person’s “bad” food.
- The research is confirming there isn’t a one-size-fits-all approach when it comes to weight loss and is looking at gut microbes and the body’s blood sugar response to determine the level of individual variation.
- Because we can change our gut microbes, if a favorite food is determined to be “bad” for blood sugar levels, this can be adjusted over time by changing the gut bacteria composition.
I love this new perspective from what has been considered the “norm” in the diet world. As a Certified Health Coach it is also exciting because the personalization is what health coaching is all about. We work with clients on an individual basis to identify what is working well in their lives, and for their bodies, in order to get the best results.
You can find the full article here:read more