Motivation Articles

Trade Secrets from the SparkPeople Coaches

What You Can Learn from Your Coaches

Wouldn’t it be great to be inside the mind of a health and fitness expert, even just for a little while? You could learn the tricks of the trade, straight from the experiences in their own lives. Do what they do, make the healthy choices they make, learn how they fit nutrition and exercise into their unique lifestyles.

Now you can! Below, your favorite SparkPeople experts share the secrets of their healthy lifestyles. Maybe there’s something they do that you can apply to your own life.

Dean Anderson: Behavioral Psychology & Stress Management Expert
Chris Downie: Goal and Achievement Expert
Joe Downie: Certified Physical Fitness Instructor
Sara Hambidge: Physical Therapist
Becky Hand: Registered Dietitian / Licensed Nutritionist / M.Ed.
Jen Mueller: Certified Personal Trainer / Fitness Coach
Nicole Nichols: Personal Trainer / Group Fitness Instructor

In my fridge, you’ll always find ________. 
DEAN: Non-fat yogurt and fresh/frozen berries
CHRIS: Yogurt
JOE: Fruits and veggies
SARA: Milk
BECKY: Milk, juice, fruit, & veggies from my garden
JEN: Yogurt
NICOLE: Fresh salsa and peanut butter

My favorite “go-to” exercise: 
DEAN: Power walk (with incline) on treadmill
CHRIS: Mini-trampoline and chair pushups
JOE: Biking
SARA: Walking (with my dog preferably)
BECKY: Walking
JEN: Running
NICOLE: Walking outside or a fitness DVD

When I usually workout: 
DEAN: Midday (11-2:00)
CHRIS: Morning and small breaks throughout the day
JOE: Evenings during the week, and to start my day on the weekends
SARA: Morning
BECKY: 3-mile walk with the dog at 6 a.m., or 5-mile bike ride with kids at 6 p.m.
JEN: 5:30 a.m.
NICOLE: Directly after work (between 5 and 7 p.m.)

My biggest temptation/obstacle: 
DEAN: Chocolate & peanut butter
CHRIS: Having too much work to do and not stepping back for a minute to re-energize
JOE: Eating late at night
SARA: Sleep/fatigue
BECKY: Night-time overeating
JEN: I LOVE sweets!
NICOLE: Sleeping too much...and pancakes!

My favorite trick for staying motivated: 
DEAN: Old (fat) photo on fridge
CHRIS: Looking at my little boy and remembering how much it’ll help him for me to have energy and be in shape
JOE: If my actions don't align with my words, I have no idea who I am.
SARA: Planning a workout with a friend
BECKY: Setting my alarm 30 minutes early, for “me” time (to exercise, do yoga, meditate, or read)
JEN: Setting small goals for myself (even during one workout) to test my limits and challenge myself
NICOLE: When I really don’t feel like working out, I commit to doing at least 10 or 15 minutes, and for the most part, once I get going I’ll keep going. This helps me remember how good it feels to be healthy; and if I decide not to continue, at least I put in a minimum amount of time. It's a win-win situation!

In my home gym, you’ll find _________. 
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Member Comments

  • It's nice to see the ones we working with can open up there hearts to us so honestly. - 5/3/2013 4:39:17 PM
  • I admire all of you for admitting not only your strengths but also your weaknesses. Makes me feel like I am not doing so badly. - 12/4/2012 7:36:48 PM
  • oh my gosh you absolutely put a real face on each of these people i love so much and have come to think of as family for so many guys are the most successful for sure
    the lady mary (aka woweetoo) posseing through on the ever faithful camel clyde - 12/4/2012 4:39:10 PM
    Nice article. I'm trying to find more information about Sarah and Joe - can't find it. - 12/4/2012 1:31:16 PM
  • Loved this article! It was fun! - 12/4/2012 7:56:46 AM
  • Loved these--thank you for sharing! (And I'm tickled to read that someone else eats Combos, too!) - 12/4/2012 7:06:11 AM
  • Where is Coach Tanya in this article???? Just asking - 8/25/2012 12:12:23 PM
    Thank you for the tips - 5/1/2012 7:40:24 AM
  • This one really hit me - "BECKY: “I can't, can't do anything.” " - 5/1/2012 6:41:49 AM
  • Thank you for sharing you knowledge with us all. Just what I needed to hear.
    Jenny - 5/1/2012 4:23:31 AM
  • “There are no short cuts to any place worth going.” - Great motto! - 5/15/2011 9:39:22 AM
    Great article lots of good information. I copied down the personal mottos and placed them on cards around the house for my family to read. May be one of them might get some inspiration. - 9/9/2010 6:37:58 PM
  • It is really good to read what the experts do for fitness and how they stay motivated! Thanks for a great artickle! - 7/7/2010 8:06:53 PM
  • It is really good to read what the experts do for fitness and how they stay motivated! Thanks for a great artickle! - 7/7/2010 8:06:50 PM
  • This was a nice article - gives one lots to think about and good guidance - handy snipets to use, as someone suggested, to make signs, notes, etc.
    There is one more question I wish were asked.. What did you do to keep the belief that the goals can be attained.. or in another way - What do you tell someone who seems to be keeping themselves from working towards the set goals? - 2/17/2010 2:04:57 PM

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