Stephanie: Well, I’m a mom of two delicious boys and we live together with my boyfriend in a coastal town south of Boston, MA. Most people know me through the seasonal cleanses I run online. I LOVE my life and the people in it. I feel incredibly blessed to do what I do. My story doesn’t start there though.
It starts back to when I was pregnant with my first son. During that pregnancy I gained over 75lbs. I started out as a size 8 and ballooned up to a 14. I truly thought it would all magically fall off as soon as I had the baby, as I have never really had big issues with my weight prior. Well, I was wrong. While I did lose about 35 lbs in the first few months with no effort, those extra 50 plus pounds hung around. For years. I had my second son about 4 years later and I was so done looking in the mirror and seeing someone who truly didn’t feel like the me that was on the inside.
I was ready to do whatever it took to change. I was never good at dieting and I was having trouble figuring out what kind of exercise I needed to be doing. My husband was working during the day and going to school at night. I was home with the boys. My formerly active, outdoor loving self began leading a sedentary life with a kitchen close by at all times every time I was bored or something didn’t go right. There wasn’t a lot of “me” time in those years and I knew I needed help with this, if I was going to change.
I found a holistic health coach that I knew through a friend and immediately signed on with her. She taught me so much! I loved what I was learning and eagerly applied it to my life. I began to get happier and clearer about what I wanted out of life. I realized that a lot of what was going on around me didn’t work anymore. I was changing, reconnecting with myself. So, feeling brave (and scared shitless) I made one of the biggest, hardest choices of my life. I moved out of the house I shared with my husband and filed for divorce. It was the most emotionally draining time in my life, but It was also one of the best decisions I ever made.
EF: Why did you choose the health coaching world and what do you do?
S: I chose to become a health coach at the urging and support of my own health coach that I had been seeing for the last 7 or 8 months. She believed in me. My family believed in me. I had just left my husband and had moved my kids back to my hometown in a different state. I was living with my parents and I felt so incredibly lost. I had been a stay at home mom and freelance artist for 5 years and I wasn’t sure what my next step would be. Who the hell was going to hire me?Deciding to go to Institute for Integrative Nutrition (IIN) changed the course of my life. It gave me a path to follow, even though I had no idea where it would lead. I immersed myself in the course material as soon as it reached my doorstep and never looked back. I have always been fascinated by alternative ways of healing, eating, cooking and living.When I graduated from IIN I immediately began seeing clients. I work with women who are ready to look in the mirror and smile at themselves. Women who, just like me have lost touch with themselves for a variety of reasons. I help them begin to lose weight (if they want too), love their bodies, see connection between their habits and their lives and support them as they transition to a way of eating and living that works for them. I work one on one as well as facilitate online group programs centered around eating real food and living a life this reflects our deepest desires and truth.
I have to admit, before my own experience of working with a health coach I always felt like a “healthy lifestyle” was totally unattainable for me. It was too overwhelming and confusing, it was something that skinny people did, not me, that I wouldn’t be able to eat pie anymore, that I had to do yoga everyday. I am so happy to tell each woman that I work with that this simply is not true. I’m living proof.
EF: What sort of philosophies do you have around food?
S: Happily, no. When I talk to people about what I do they are always excited to hear more. People are REALLY craving information about food. They want to feel so much better than they do. They want to know why they are feeling so crappy. There is so much misinformation out there and I love educating people (if they ask me too). So no, I guess I have been fortunate to not run into any resistance. I’m lucky to be pretty skilled in the kitchen…It’s hard to be resistant to food that taste and makes you feel so good!
EF: What keeps you inspired to continue on your path of health and wellness?
S: Constantly learning and pushing myself into unfamiliar territory. Seeing progress and sharing ah-hah moments with clients. Connecting with like minded souls (like you guys!) to chat about food and life. Experimenting with food to find what optimally works for me right now. Making sure to include beauty, nature and creativity into every day.EF: Do you have anything coming up? Please do tell!S:I do! I have been wanting to blend my creative design background with what I do now ever since I started Wellness by Design. I have partnered with Leah Kent of Skill It to create a gorgeous online e-course called “Feathering the Nest”. It’s a two week program that guides you into making your home a beautiful space that mirrors the love & dreams you hold in your soul. It’s about tapping into our femininity to coax out that magic that lays dormant in our homes. We will have written prompts, creative projects, a few recipes and a lot more to sensually guide you to create a sacred space that nourishes everyone who inhabits it. You can learn more here : http://skillitri.com/feathering-the-nest/