Q&A: Educating Members on Nutrition

educating members on nutrition

Nutrition is part of the conversation at CrossFit Bradenton. Co-owner Paris Vannata shares how they’ve gone about educating themselves and their members on nutrition.

BP: Why is educating your members and staff on nutrition important?

PV: Without nutrition in CrossFit, or any kind of exercise program, you can only really go so far. I think you need both things to really have success with it in terms of how your body looks and how you perform in the gym. So I think it’s a critical component … I think as Coaches and owners of the gym, we lead by example, so we need to have a good understanding of how to eat to perform, how to eat to look good.

BP: What type of nutrition education do you and your staff have?

PV: We all have broad, high-level knowledge. We’ve had some people come in and do seminars. Jason Ackerman came in and did a macro seminar. But the biggest asset we have at our gym is we have not only a certified nutritionist, but one who’s a registered dietitian. So that’s where we leverage our nutritional expertise from. I think our Coaches have pretty broad knowledge and they do a pretty good job of it, but she’s the expert.

BP: How does your nutrition expert educate members?

PV: We have one-on-one consults with her. It’s like personal training. There are various options. You could do an hour consult and leave it there, or you could do a personalized meal plan, or you can do a personalized meal plan with follow up, so we have three different levels. Also we try to do seminars, free seminars for the members, and they could be about an hour a-piece, and she’s offered a couple of those.

BP: Why is it beneficial to partner with a nutrition expert?

PV: I was very fortunate to have someone fall into my lap, so to speak, but there are many services or people out there that I know personally that do it and help other Boxes. They run it as a service and it’s pretty much turnkey. The Affiliate owner has to do some work or has somebody spearheading it, but all of the information is coming from somebody who’s a certified nutritionist or dietitian. If you partner with somebody – a nutritionist or dietitian – have them come in and start off with a broad-brush seminar on nutrition. It’s a disservice to your members if you’re not offering nutrition at your Box, in my opinion.

Heather is the editor for Box Pro Magazine. Contact her at heather@peakemedia.com.