Don’t Go Solo on Nutrition!

Don't go solo on nutrition.

If you told me a year ago I’d be drinking protein, I’d throw back my head and laugh uproariously at you.

“Me? Consuming a protein shake? That’s rich – in protein!” is what I would say, joke included.

The thing is, while I wasn’t necessarily unhealthy a year ago, neither was I necessarily healthy. I was probably like a lot of your members when they first walked into your gym.

Now, it’s not that I’m associating taking supplements with being healthy. If you think I’m saying that, wait until the July/August issue of Box Pro comes out and then read the story on supplements. Just like you can’t out work a bad diet, you can’t out supplement a bad diet either.

I’m also not saying that I’m perfect now.

However, I’m relating my taking of protein to health because for me, it’s a sort of a tangible turning point in my life. I want to get stronger, fitter, better. I want to change my body not for looks but for health. And I bought a tub of powder to help do that.

However, I still need plenty of guidance like I’m sure a lot of your members do. And while I get to interview nutrition experts, not all of your members do.

We all say nutrition is vital. I’ve been told that at my Box a plethora of times. But, if you aren’t giving your members guidance on how to eat health, all those burpees and Cleans can only add up to so much. The thing is, should you and your Coaches be responsible for teaching classes and nutrition?

I’ve also recently been working on a story about outsourcing nutrition advice. One of my sources for the piece said it well: Coaches can’t be everything to everyone. Your Coaches can only be so much. If they are trying to coach classes, give nutrition advice, work on mobility and preform business tasks, they will get burned out before they even get going.

And let’s face it: Your members won’t get the amount of nutrition advice they need.

Maybe it’s time to look to an expert on edible health. Maybe it’s time to partner with a nutritionist or company that can send out weekly tips to your members and offer tried and true nutrition programming. Maybe it’s time to allow that one Coach to ease back on his or her other responsibilities so he or she can focus more on members and helping them reach new levels of health.

My protein drinking and healthy eating didn’t come from nowhere. It came from conversations and research. It came from discussions and reading articles. Over time it progressed into my habits today. Sure, I’m still finding the right and healthiest pathway for me, but my point is I didn’t go solo.

And neither can your members.

Heather Hartmann
Heather is the editor for Box Pro Magazine. Contact her at

1 Comment

  1. Avatar

    anthony almada

    June 20, 2015 at 12:35 pm

    Heather: You provide an insightful perspective that is rarely embraced. Would one ask their massage or physical therapist, or Olympic lifting coach, about an ugly black and blue-hued mole on their back, or would they take the time to find a dermatologic oncologist (a skin cancer MD)? Few regard sports nutrition as a scientific research discipline, that requires a broad and deep knowledge to be able to impart EXPERT, and SOUND, evidence-based advice.

    Evangelism and “bro science” prevail in sports nutrition, and VERY few consider the ZERO cost method to affirm the safety and efficacy of a dietary supplement: calling up the company that markets the product (usually a toll free #) and asking THEM to provide any research studies done with humans, with the ACTUAL product, and published in a scientific journal. Five minutes to find WHAT’S REAL…

    Doing “research” can be defined many ways, but the definitive way is to READ the RESEARCH studies conducted in humans, and compel the companies to provide them. No studies = no evidence = “What have I got to lose…”