There are many words that have been used to describe me: Registered Nurse. Strategist. Public Speaker. List Creator. Event Planner. Wife. Humanitarian. Step-mom. Health/Lifestyle Coach. Organized. Busy. Country. Good Listener. Competitor. Happy.
All considerably true, but actions always speak louder than words. I believe that by playing to my strengths, critically thinking, and applying what I’ve learned – in the classroom, boardroom, and kitchen – I can creatively solve problems that my clients are dealing with, internally, and externally.
“I have an overwhelming passion for everything health and wellness. I want to help women realize their potential, love themselves unconditionally and make sustainable changes that benefit their bodies inside and out. It’s kind of my thing.”
You see, I wasn’t always this full of life, purpose or positivity.
I was born and raised in a small Alberta town of 500 people, where everyone was your neighbour and knew your business before you did (Handy, right?). My mom was a single mom for most of my childhood, and she did her best to parent the craziness that was my inner child. I was ‘mostly’ a good kid, with a few (or more) mistakes and bad choices along the way. I did my homework. I got good grades. I applied to the University of Alberta for my BScN, and thankfully, I was accepted!
Now, this is where my story really begins.
My journey started roughly about 5 years ago, before I was even aware I was on this new, unknown path. I was mid-way through my university degree for nursing and more than 50 lbs heavier than I am now, clocking in at my heaviest at 178 lbs. I was spending my mornings in class, complete with a chocolate chip muffin and an extra large chocolate milk for breakfast. Lunch was skipped, and I’d make it through the day on granola bars and bags of “100 calorie” snacks, thinking I was making good choices (trust me, I get it). After a full day of back to back classes, I’d head home to grab a quick supper (usually mushroom soup and a grilled cheese, or KD), and head to my part time job as a server at the local pub. During my shift, I’d consume multiple ice teas, a few alcoholic beverages, and some type of deep fried snack later on. Eventually, once my shift ended at 2 or 3 am, I would head home for a couple hours to ‘nap’ before class… and the cycle would repeat.
While I was making these incredibly unhealthy, destructive lifestyle choices, I was seemingly unaware of the major health problems that were occurring on a daily basis: Bloating, Insomnia, Migraines, Joint Stiffness, Cystic Acne, Re-occurring Infections, Menstrual Changes, Constipation, Skin Issues, Intense and Severe Stomach Cramps, Increasing Anxiety, Short-Temper, Massive Fatigue and the list goes on.
What did I do? Well, soon enough, the impact of what my body was dealing with hit me like a tidal wave. I began to realize that my problems were not normal, and they were getting worse as the days went on. Realizing this, and now on a mission for a solution, I began to visit multiple doctors offices looking for an answer. Despite my young age (at the time, 20 years old), and detailed history of problems occurring, I wasn’t being taken seriously. I was shuffled out the door as fast as I walked in, with a fistful of pills prescribed to me without a clear explanation or understanding. I began to question the process of health care, and I was on the verge of completely giving up. Thankfully, I gave it one more shot and 2 weeks later, I found out I had celiac disease.
What did I do next? This diagnosis was troubling for me. Firstly, because it was new and scary, and I didn’t have a clue what it meant. Secondly, because now that I had found out what was the cause of my problems… I had to deal with it and resolve the issue on my own.
Yikes. So I took to what I knew, which was a laptop and a google search engine, and I got to work. Hours (and a few glasses of wine) later, I began to have a clear understanding on what ‘gluten free’ meant. Almost immediately, I went on a strict elimination diet of gluten (and soon after, dairy), learning more about my diagnosis as time went on.
The changes started slow, and I began to layer them in, experimenting along the way. Eating cleaner, whole foods. Drinking more water. Cutting out processed foods. Sleeping better. Exercising more. A job with less hours. Figuring out why I was binging on icing out of the jar and bags of chips at 2 pm. Meeting my (now) husband. Going plant-based as a family. A health coach training program. Researching holistic/functional medicine. Advancing my education.
Now 5 years later, 50 lbs lighter, and completely symptom free, I am feeling the best I have ever felt. It took me many years to make all of those changes and experiments. I tried and I failed (lots). I tried and I succeeded. It was basically navigating a new country without a GPS- all I had was a sense of direction, an inner compass telling me what felt right for my body, and the smarts to research everything as I went along. Now, I get to use all of this wisdom and experience to help fast-track the process for my clients.
I received my training from the Institute for Integrative Nutrition where I studied a variety of dietary theories and practical lifestyle coaching methods. With my knowledge, we co-create completely personalized actions based on your goals to move you toward your ideal vision of health within your unique body, lifestyle, preferences, and resources.
To help each woman I work with create the life they were meant to live – by making them healthier, happier, more energized and more successful.
I work best with women who are struggling with weight-loss and finding a healthy balance in their life. My ideal client recognizes that they are making choices that are affecting their health negatively, and they genuinely want to make changes to better their lives. They may not know where to begin, or how to get there, but they realize they have the potential to do and be better. They may just want to feel better. They likely struggle with self-esteem and confidence, and find themselves picking apart their appearance on a daily basis. They likely have multiple symptoms and ailments that have been getting increasingly worse with no relief. They may be scared, anxious, and uncomfortable with change, but they desire to wake up each day feeling great in their body- inside and out.
Because I have a full schedule with limited openings for private clients, I want to ensure that those I am working with are truly benefiting from my support. My clients need to communicate with me openly, honestly, and non-combatively. I have no time for women who are unwilling to take action towards their own transformation between our sessions or for those who refuse to take this process seriously. While I am a paid service, I will not work with someone who is not cooperating or communicating during the program. I’m not for clients who don’t consider me a professional with business hours & rates that reflect that fact.
Nutritionists give you a list of foods to eat and a list of foods to avoid. Most people already know this, but they haven’t been able to actually do it.
Therapists don’t typically provide clear action steps or address food in relation to mood.
Doctors don’t generally address the root cause of the symptoms but instead prescribe a pill or other quick fix.
As a Health Coach, I address the root cause of the problem and guide clients in holistic healing, addressing all areas of life.