I know that most of you know WHAT I do… I’m the owner and nutrition coach for My Bariatric Kitchen and Living Health Nutrition. I teach classes and post recipes and give out lots of suggestions and support to the members of MBK.
But do you know WHY?
Why did I quit my 25-year career as an educator to spend 12-14 hours a day working?
I was a cash pay patient. I had no support. No meetings with a nutritionist. No supervised weight loss period. No information sessions. I found a doctor I trusted, met with him once and scheduled my surgery. Boom. One month later. Done. I was sleeved and sent home to become skinny.
And even though I thought I had researched everything I needed to know… in actuality, I was totally lost after my surgery. I had no clue how to eat properly.
I knew enough about nutrition to know that “just eat 60-70 grams of protein a day, no carbs, and drink lots of water” wasn’t going to cut it for me. On what planet is that sustainable? What does that TEACH me about eating to fuel my body and being healthy for life? Nothing. How does that help to prevent me from regaining it ALL BACK? It doesn’t. Period.
So, I went on a mission. I found a coach and a nutrition plan that was what I knew would be healthy and I followed it. And I lost weight, consistently. But what I discovered, as I joined at least 15 bariatric groups on Facebook, was that there was A LOT of misinformation out there and very little reputable advice. There were far too many people without support leading up to or after their bariatric surgery. There were lots of good intentions… but did I really want to trust my health to someone’s good intentions? Not a chance.
During this time I also discovered I had a passion for nutrition and cooking healthy meals. I already had the passion for teaching… but this new world… holy wowzers! I loved everything about it!
So, I started a little group… just to share some healthy bariatric and family-friendly recipes, based on balanced macros, so I could contribute a little to the bariatric world and help people reach their goals.
October 12, 2016, My Bariatric Kitchen was born.
And that group exploded. Literally. Like overnight.
And people started asking LOTS of questions… the same questions I had at the beginning of my journey. So, I researched again… and found a certification program for nutritional coaching. I wanted to give the right kind of advice to those that had no one else to guide them. And I thought… okay… so I’ll start a little coaching business on the side… make a little extra fun money and teach people about nutrition.
By December 1st, I had over 1,000 members and I found myself thinking, “There is something special about this. This is something big. This is something that people need.”
I offered my first class — Bariatric Basics — and it sold out in less than 48 hours. I had a waiting list of over 50 people for the March class two months away. WHAT?!?!
There was just one problem… I had NO CLUE what to do next. I mean who was I? A teacher… what did I know about owning a business? Zilch. Nada.
So, you guessed it, I researched, again, and I found Megan Lockhart and the Hello Life Academy.
I was terrified, thrilled, and nervous all at the same time… but I knew that what I had created was something special. And I knew that with the right kind of support I would be successful. I HAD to make it work.
For the next five months, I worked TWO full-time jobs. I commuted over an hour each way to my corporate education job, worked an 8 hour day, then came home each night to work for 5-6 more hours. I worked weekends. I worked when I should have been sleeping, and spending time with family, and taking care of myself. And by February 1, 2017, I had 10,000+ members.
I had a goal. A mission. I wanted to replace my salary so I could be a full-time nutrition coach and do what had now become my passion. I wanted to HELP people and TEACH them about nutrition. I wanted to be the support they lacked. I wanted to cry with them when they needed a shoulder and I wanted to celebrate with them when they had a victory.
So I did it. May 1, 2017, I walked away from my 25-year career and I’ve never looked back.
I am doing what I was meant to do… and with God’s blessing… I can make a tiny difference in this great big world. Maybe I can make a difference for you! ❤️