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For Jenna, becoming a health coach was the secret to achieving her fitness goals
If I were to walk into a room full of young women and pose the question, “who here has ever struggled with their body image and had concerns about their weight?”, my guess is that a majority of hands would rise in the air. I think it’s a fair assumption that most of us have felt these insecurities at some point in our lives. Our Single Girl contributor, Jenna Wolf knows that feeling. She, like so many other young women, admits to having waged the battle to keep up a healthy lifestyle– one that balances the right mix of working out and eating right without going overboard.
When it comes to truly being healthy, the definition isn’t rooted in the number that appears on the scale. It’s about making choices that will help you lead a longer, happier, better life. That definition and our motivations behind getting healthy may be different for each of us. Similarly, our struggles to stay committed to healthy habits are also deeply personal. In today’s post, Jenna, now a certified health coach, talks about how choosing to help others achieve their health and fitness goals has been the secret to helping her reach her own.
By: Jenna Wolf
>>Looking for a Magic Pill
I have always struggled with my weight. In my group of friends, I had earned a reputation for falling for whatever the latest diet or fitness gimmick was in hopes that it would magically make me skinny. Like so many others, I wanted to see the results but with as little effort as possible.
A few years ago I caught an infomercial for a new at-home workout DVD series that promised to give you incredible results. As was to be expected, this new fad fitness program had me hooked. The before and after shots that flashed across the screen offered new hope and once again I believed that THIS would be the plan that would finally work.
When my DVDs arrived in the mail I was eager to get started. I popped my daily routine into my DVD player and saw skinny days ahead. Of course, like every other program I’d tried, after a few days, the initial excitement wore off. I found myself doing the workouts but failing to change my eating habits. Once again, I was approaching this as a quick fix rather than making a lifestyle change toward long-term healthier habits.
>>Tipping the Scales
I knew I needed to take a different approach if I was ever going to successfully accomplish any of my fitness goals. As I racked my brain for the answer, frustrated that I had failed to commit to yet another “magic plan”, fate stepped in. Through the wonders of social media, I was introduced to a health coach who worked for the fitness company behind my recent DVD purchase. She extended an invite to join her challenge group and get back on track with my workout program– this time with the support of others who were in my similar situation.
Joining the group gave me the shot of motivation I needed to finally stick to my fitness plan. The group offered support and a healthy dose of competition. We communicated through a Facebook group where we could post questions to our coach, ask others how they were doing, admit to our cheat days, and ultimately find support to keep going. Our coach also offered small prizes for completing small tasks like sharing progress pics or a motivational quote.
While I still had slip-ups along the way, after 10 weeks on the program I had lost nearly 7 lbs. and 9 inches overall. It was the most success I had achieved with any program and needless to say, I was thrilled with my results. For me the accomplishment was as much about sticking with the commitment I had made to myself as it was about the weight loss. When my coach recommended that I give coaching a shot myself, I decided to give it a try. I wanted to offer others the same kind of support to accomplish their goals as had been offered to me.
>>Finding the Courage to Coach
At first I was nervous. I am COMPLETELY aware that I do not have the ideal body and I was afraid that people would see a picture of me and be like SHE is a fitness coach?? Though it was a challenge, I found the courage to push my fear aside and decided I needed to put myself out there. I hoped that becoming a coach would make me try even harder to feel comfortable in my skin, as well as help others feel comfortable in theirs. That is my ultimate goal.
Becoming a coach has definitely helped me to define what healthy really means. We have all heard of different meal plans, workout programs, and rules to follow. As a coach, I get to help answer the tough questions that come up from my clients and keep them on track toward their goals. Being healthy isn’t just about working out everyday, eating well, or adding the occasional protein shakes to your diet. It has to be a combination of all these things! I’ve come to accept that there is no “magic pill” that will make you skinny. It simply takes a willingness to commit.
>>Ready, Set, Get Fit!
I’ll be the first to admit that making a “lifestyle” change is challenging. It means that you’re healthy habits don’t get to end after 30 days on a program or after you’ve hit a certain number on the scale. What I’ve learned is that each person is unique and must find the plan that works best for them. I realized that while I could motivate myself to workout, I struggled with keeping my diet in check. In addition to joining the group, what has really helped me to stay motivated is visualizing my goals. I have a rooftop pool that’s filled with 20-30 year olds each weekend. I want to be able to walk around in a bikini without putting a cover-up on as soon as I get out of the pool. You have to find the thing that is going to keep you motivated –whether it’s a friend who’s going to hold you accountable, a support group, or your own visualizations.
My #1 goal for my clients is for them to see results, gain confidence, and ultimately change their lifestyle for good. I know looking at the scale can be discouraging, so I recommend that my clients measure themselves and take before/after pictures. This gives you a better idea of the change that is happening that the scale won’t reveal. I want my clients to come to me and say because of YOU, I am more confident in my skin. That’s really what it’s all about!
Remember, your health is a personal journey. It’s not a competition against anyone but yourself. Find what makes you feel healthy and happy. Stay positive, motivated, and encourage and if you need any help along the way don’t hesitate to give me a shout out. I’m here to help you gain the confidence you deserve to have!
Jenna is a certified health coach with BeachBody, the company behind popular at-home workout series P90x and Insanity. For more from this Single Girl, reach out to her at: