Hello and Welcome!
My name is Kristin. Ok cool, but really, WHO am I?
About My Life
I’m a wife. I have an amazingly supportive husband and am also a mother to two lovely daughters (ages 6 and 22 months). I have many to thank along the way who helped train me, educate me, and opened my eyes to an entirely new world of healing.
I come from a “meat and potatoes” kind of background. Growing up I ate a lot of red meat, starchy vegetables, and junk food. It would be decades later before I realized how this could impact my health. When I was 13, I was diagnosed with moderate idiopathic scoliosis which to this day has now progressed to severe scoliosis. My personal journey to health has been highly motivated by the increasing back pain the past decade and realizing surgery will be needed. I wanted to be healthy going in to surgery to help increase the speed of recovery. I also personally have mild to moderate plaque psoriasis which by experimenting with my diet, have pinpointed triggers and through diet, am working on reducing inflammation in my body overall. The statements above are not medical advice, merely personal recollections of my health journey.
My Weight Battle
In college, I started working out in the gyms on both campuses about 3 times a week. I felt great! I never seemed to tone up or shed weight. I could not understand why. Looking back, my food lifestyle definitely did not support the exercise routine I had undertaken and left me gaining weight throughout college.
Post college I continued to work out for about a year. I steadily gained more weight as I began nursing school during the day and working full time night shift hours as a nursing assistant. Food choices were quick and not healthy. Plus my schedule was not conducive to keeping my body in good form. At this point, I reached a weight that I would carry through with me for the next decade.
It was after my first pregnancy when I began my personal health journey. I was overweight and not fit at all going into my first pregnancy. I ate ice cream nearly every night, and indulged in many cravings. I did not eat healthy and not near enough fresh foods and servings of vegetables and fruits that I should have. I had Gestational Diabetes during this pregnancy that was thankfully monitored entirely through diet and multiple finger sticks a day to monitor blood sugar levels. Thankfully it never resulted in medications to control it. It was during this pregnancy when I realized I needed to take better care of myself. Now the gestational diabetes was not directly related to my health as much as it was to the functioning of the placenta. However, my health influenced the likelihood of developing the condition. It was 13 months post partum when I embarked on my health journey. I started with increasing my fitness level. Along the way, I learned more about nutrition. Interestingly as a nurse, one would think I would totally have this health rodeo thing down. Not even close. This was not something that was necessarily taught, rather knowledge acquired in practice and in real life. Going into my second pregnancy I weighed just the same as my first pregnancy, but I had less body fat, was overall more healthy, and I continued to workout until halfway through the pregnancy until I had issues with my back and hips making it too painful to continue. This second time, I did not develop gestational diabetes. This was a testament to the way I took care of my body and the genetic luck of a functioning placenta. The journey continued about 6 months post partum and continues on!
I may be at the same weight I ended with at nursing school, but I have adapated a different lifestyle that feeds my body and mind and helps me feel confident in my skin. Don’t get me wrong, totally have my moments of self-doubt and mental anguish over looking in a mirror (I strongly suggest hiding floor length mirrors for a period of 1 year!). I am more confident in my knowledge, capabilities, teaching, and ability to share with others along the way.
I attended college after high school where I obtained a Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology in 2003 from College of St. Benedict. As I would later come to find out, I thrive on learning! In 2006, I went back to school and obtained my LPN diploma in 2007, and went on to receive an Associate of Applied Science degree in 2008 in Professional Nursing (RN) from Ridgewater College. I immediately began working as a nurse in long term care facilities, then as a Director of Nursing in an assisted living/memory care facility, and eventually moved into Utilization Management (insurance) using my skill set of critical thinking. It was in 2011 I decided to attend Minnesota State University-Mankato and in 2013, received a Bachelor of Science in Nursing. In 2016 I began my venture into health coaching. I completed a health coaching series that year but as time went on, did not feel the training I was provided was what I wanted to help others with. In 2018 I sought out AFPA and began the path to Master Level Nutrition Consultant, that will train me through behavior modification, Holistic nutrition, Sports nutrition (coming Fall 2019), and Weight Management. nutrition (coming Spring 2020).
Through my hands on nursing experience and personal health journey, I came to realize although I enjoyed the nurse-patient interaction, my scope as a nurse was limited in giving any advice to lifestyle unless directed by a physician to do so. Much of my direct care experience in nursing involved charting physician orders, administering medications (and there were a lot of those!), providing assistance with daily activities like bathing, dealing with irritated families that were getting increasingly frustrated with lack of professional communication. I found myself not having enough time to actually get to know my patients, but rather spend all my time charting, on phone calls, and administering physician ordered treatments. All I wanted to do was help them make changes in their lifestyle or educate their families on how to do so without it being controlled by a governing body. There was so much opportunity for education and change, but at the time was not sure how to go about it. I grew increasingly frustrated until I found a job in Rheumatology working at a clinic. There, I met an amazing integrative Rheumatologist who took me under her wing and influenced me greatly. So began the path of health coaching. Win-win and I love it!
My Goal For You
My goal as a health coach is to help individuals achieve their health goals through education, discussion, motivation, support, guidance, and understanding with compassion. Making lifestyle changes is not easy for many and without the support of others, it can be daunting. The great thing about making a healthy lifestyle change is the outcomes: confidence, knowledge, feeling better inside and out, and knowing you are doing the very best thing for your body and mind!
I am here to help support you on your personal health transformation journey!