New Health Coaches Focuses on Family Accountability

A Jazzercise class in high school launched a lifelong passion for fitness in Jill Grote.

“I looked at that instructor and said I’m going to do that someday,” Jill said.

And, she did. She later became certified to teach a variety of group exercise classes and has taught everything from power aerobics and Pilates to kickboxing and tai chi.

Jill is continuing her passion for living healthy and helping others live healthy with her recent certification as a health coach through the Dr. Sears Wellness Institute.

“I’m quite passionate about healthy, simple living and continue to learn and research new information, including my recent certification as a health coach,” Jill said.

In her coaching, she focuses on families.

“I chose that because I really think I can touch more lives by working through families,” Jill said.

She wants to encourage children and their parents to get up off the couch, be active and work together on eating healthier.

That’s what she did after her daughter was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes when she was 12.

“Even though we had always eaten healthy,” Jill said, “it really made us step up to the plate even more. We became a ‘we’ in our eating habits.”

Jill’s health coaching focuses on the LEAN principle outlined in her training with the Sears Institute. It stands for Lifestyle, Exercise, Attitude and Nutrition.

“It’s more about choosing healthier foods,” she said. “There’s not an absolutely horrible no-no-no food. There are just healthier choices.”

She offers one-on-one coaching, group coaching and a new LEAN class offered at both the Orthman Community YMCA and the Don Sjogren Community YMCA.

The class includes interactive discussions, a family-oriented video, question and answer sessions, goal setting, sharing of healthy recipes (including brainy breakfast ideas) and exercise.

Jill also offers a pantry makeover where she will come into your home and suggest foods to eliminate and provide ideas for healthier options. She said the biggest changes she typically recommends is ridding the pantry of foods with high-fructose corn syrup, hydrogenated oils, food additives and colors, and foods with lots of sugar.

She also cautions against foods with fake sugars, such as diet sodas. She is currently working with a client who is giving up diet pop and said she feels the best she has in years after eliminating that one item.

Participants in Jill’s LEAN will also learn how to make simple and affordable changes to live healthier. Five actions she recommends are:
1. When grocery shopping, spend more time on the perimeter of the store than in the center where most of the processed food is shelved.
2. Read labels and pay attention to the serving size.
3. Eat foods that have fewer ingredients.
4. Eat more whole grains.
5. Avoid processed foods and focus on real food.

Jill said she is looking forward to helping more people live healthier through her work at the YMCA.

“I love being a partner with people on their fitness journey and their health journey, and I’m going to be their biggest cheerleader,” she said.

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