Hi guys!! I thought the best way to kick off this new blog is to share how I ended up here. I won't be talking in detail about my experience as a student at the Institute for Integrative Nutrition (IIN). However, if you want to hear about my journey and review of the Institute for Integrative Nutrition, check out my youtube video here. (I share how you can get a great discount for the school :P)
Keeping my story short (since most of it is explained in the video link above), I decided to go through IIN with the end goal to become a health coaching. I was working as a regional manager for JugoFresh at the time (a well-known juice bar in Miami).
Reasons Why I Signed Up For IIN:
I had recently received my BFA in industrial design from RIT and wanted to explore the health coaching career path without having to go through 4 years of nutrition school.
I wanted a school system option that was affordable and allowed me to continue working.
I loved health and helping others feel and look better, but I needed guidance on how to turn that into a career.
All of the information about health that I knew that far was self-taught, so I was looking to learn from experts in the health field.
I got all of these from IIN and more! The program taught me about health and nutrition from doctors, experts, authors, professors, celebrities, etc. It gave me the tools and confidence to leave my previous job and launch my own health coaching business (www.biaalvarez.com).
Why Am I No Longer Health Coaching
Before graduating from the year-long certification program at IIN, I was already working with 3 clients. One client was a close friend, and two others found me through Instagram.
The most rewarding part of working 1-on-1 with health coaching clients was the feedback I got. My clients would end our sessions (or email me after) with sweet words expressing their gratitude for my work with them. Nothing felt better than following my passion and to know I was actually making a difference in someone else's life!
... as an industrial designer graduate and artist at heart, I missed the artistic and creative elements that working as a designer brought to my life. While I loved health coaching, I was having more fun designing pretty worksheets for my clients or creating my health coaching website than actually coaching.
At this time, I had recently graduated from IIN and I had just signed up another coaching client. At the same time, one of my closest friends from IIN asked me to design her health coaching website. It led me to also designing her coaching/client agreements, pricing sheets, and essential oils workshop presentation slides. (take a look at my portfolio for her projects)
That's when it clicked! I had figured out what I wanted to do as my career.
What Am I Doing Now after IIN?
It took me a few months of working as both a health coach and as a designer to connect the dots and merge both jobs in one.
What is my new job title? HEALTH COACHING DESIGNER.
I work with other health coaches to design their unique brand identities and websites.
Graduating from a health coaching certification program can be overwhelming (trust me... been there!). You want to get new clients + have a logo and website ready + start blogging + take pretty photos for Instagram + go to every networking event possible. That's A LOT of moving pieces, especially if you are a one-person-show (like me).
But I am here to make this crazy process much easier and smooth flowing. I am here to take away the pressure of creating a logo/business cards/website/letterheads... away from the health coach's shoulder so they can focus all of their energy into doing what really matters: working with clients and making a difference in their health and lives.
How has IIN helped me in this new career path?
One of the best things about IIN is that it does not only teach us about health and coaching. It also teaches us about starting a business, marketing, and getting clients. The business tools can be applied to any start-up. So I used what I learned at IIN and applied to this business.
And I am not the only one to go through IIN and not work as a health coaching. Many IIN graduates have taken the lessons learned and applied them to build other businesses. Examples:
The owner of the juice bar I worked for in Miami is an IIN graduate. He started by working with 1-1 health coaching, then he began creating juice cleanses for his clients, and eventually opened the most well-known juice bar in South Florida.
A family friend went through IIN when she wanted to move career paths from accounting to health. Now she is opening her second vegan food restaurant in Miami.
Danielle Duboise: co-founder of popular healthy food delivery system Sakara.
Amy Baglan: founder of MeetMindful dating app for like-minded mindful living people.
Read other inspiring stories here.
Is IIN For Me?
I would recommend IIN to anyone wanting to:
Become a health coach
Learn more about nutrition to improve their's and their family's lives
Open a health-focused restaurant
Start a health-focused catering business
Learn more about holistic living to complement their current career as a yoga teacher, personal trainer, life coach, ...
Create a food product
Write a health book
Start a health-focused blog / Become a health influencer
Just to name a few...
I see IIN as much more than a certification program that turns students into health coaches. The possibilities are endless.
Was this post helpful? Have you been thinking of becoming a IIN student (or joining another health coaching certification program?). Share your thoughts and journey in the comments below. I love to read them!!
(PS: email me at firstname.lastname@example.org for a discount code for IIN!)
Interested in working together to design your unique brand and website? Visit my Services page for package options, design process, and pricing; Portfolio to see more of my work, and Contact so we can get in touch!