With society's continued shift towards wellness, it's easier, now more than ever, to help you take control of your health. From promoting Mental Health Awareness during the month of May to companies offering wellness incentives for their employees, there are numerous resources available to start making impactful lifestyle changes. But with all of the information available today, it can seem daunting to know where to start on your road to wellness.
Finding someone to mentor you, such as a health and wellness coach, is a great starting point. But what does a health and wellness coach do and how do they differ from a fitness trainer or dietitian?
While personal trainers and nutritionists are excellent certified professionals, the majority of the time they only specialize in one aspect of wellness - usually exercise or nutrition. These are both valid avenues of wellness for some, but only one or two aspects of health are not enough to help for most. Finding someone with a breadth of skills ensures you can cover all wellness aspects. This is where health and wellness coaches can come into play.
What is a Health and Wellness Coach?
A health and wellness coach works with individuals to help improve their lifestyle and behavior. Most health and wellness coaches are knowledgeable in multiple facets from exercise and nutrition, to mental health. That being said, there is no set skillset each one has yet a person can find the right coach who has the ideal skills to work on the specific combination of areas of their health.
What Does a Health and Wellness Coach Do?
If there was one positive that came from the pandemic, it would have to be the virtual expansion of the fitness industry. Today, it’s as easy as ever to be able to connect with health professionals from across the country. So, whether you meet in person or virtually, health and wellness coaches meet with their clients in one on one settings, working to achieve whatever goals they set together. Here are some of the things that you might work on together.
Obstacle course training, race training (running, biking, swimming)
Teaching nutritional information
Practicing positive mindset creation
Increasing life satisfaction
Who Could Benefit From a Health and Wellness Coach?
An even harder question to ask would be who wouldn't benefit from a health and wellness coach. While some of us may have solid control over our physical health with exercise and nutrition, the spiritual and emotional side of life can be tough at times. We as human beings tend to be our own worst enemy and judge, making sure we punish ourselves more than what's necessary. Having a mentor to help you learn how to celebrate the small victories throughout life or how the power of affirmations can be life-changing, is never a bad thing.
So whether you're a boxer who struggles with a well-balanced diet, a teacher who needs help getting back into the swing of things fitness-wise, or a nurse who is always putting everyone else first and could use some motivational self-help, the majority of us could benefit from having a health and wellness coach in our lives.
What to Look For?
Before you decide to sign-up for the first wellness coach that you find, it’s worth noting that doing a little research ahead of time will help you find a coach that specializes in the area(s) of support you are wanting. When looking for a wellness coach, don’t hesitate to ask questions - Are they certified? (Note: credentials do not always mean being qualified) Do their clients have promising success? What is the value of what they are offering? It’s important to make sure the coach you choose is the right fit for you.
Things to keep in mind when researching:
Client testimonies or reviews
Your Road to Wellness
Everyone’s path to wellness is different. Just because your favorite fitness influencer is doing x, y or z doesn’t always mean that those same things will work for you. With the guidance and support of a wellness coach, you can balance your life in areas you maybe have been struggling with or didn’t know how to start. With the right coach, the right tools, and the right mindset, you are on the right path to success.
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