hiring a health coach – top 5 things to look for 

People often wonder if hiring a health coach is worth it or needed.  I get it.  You’re the type of person that can figure it out all on your own and has all the time in the world to figure it out, right?  The truth is, hiring a health coach will probably be one of the best investments of your life because the returns you’ll gain in money, time, happiness and health are priceless.  

However, just like any profession, trade or service, there are going to be options that are better than others depending on what you’re looking to achieve and where you are currently in your stage of life.  If I were you, these are the things that I would look for in a health coach.


#1 Personality – are they a match?

If you don’t know, like and trust them you won’t open up to them and your results will not be great.  I’m not saying you have to be best friends with them (I don’t recommend that, actually – keep it professional) but I am saying that you should take the time to get to know them by studying their free advice via blog, podcast, video, etc.  How much do they share about their story and why they are a health coach? For example, here I share a little bit about my story and my why. I want to be sure that I attract the people that can relate to my story and/or know who I am http://brendasillas.com/about/why-brenda/

Go to their events to get to know them and have a word or two with them.  Establish rapport with them first and see how it goes.  Don’t try to get free advice from them, though – that doesn’t feel good.  In order to get real results that are sustainable from health coaching, you need to be able to establish depth within yourself and get real about why you want to focus on your health.  Your health coach should be able to help you reach that depth mentally by asking you the really hard questions. 


If you need help with the step by step of figuring out your numbers, download my free guide on how to lose 20 pounds by summer.


#2 experience and credentials

They should have some kind of experience or credentials, whether it’s a certificate, degree, work experience as an actual health coach somewhere else, or personal experience achieving the results you want to achieve as well.  But remember, respect where you are in your journey, what you’re looking to achieve and what feels good with your budget.  I believe there is a health coach for everyone but not every health coach is the right fit for everyone. 

For example, when I was in my early 20’s I hired a personal trainer because I wanted to lose weight.  We focused a lot on exercise and weight training but she didn’t really help me or focus on nutrition as much as I would have liked.  I ended up gaining some of the weight back. 

In my mid to late 20’s I dabbled into the world of bikini competing – the trainer I hired had a lot of experience helping men and women transform their bodies by combining weight training, cardiovascular exercise and nutrition.  Yes, I transformed my body but this lifestyle was not sustainable and I ended up with an eating disorder and gained some of the weight back. 

It really wasn’t until I became a certified Integrative Nutrition Health Coach https://geti.in/2sriVZM that I realized how much my emotions and dissatisfaction with my life was affecting my health, weight, dietary choices and lifestyle. So just be sure you know what you want out of a health coach when you start interviewing them. 

You can see some of my credentials and experience on this page as a reference (scroll down) http://brendasillas.com/about/why-brenda/


#3 registered dietitian vs. personal trainer vs. health coach

Think of a health coach as a sports coach (kind of).  The coach isn’t the one playing on the field, you are.  This is the same perspective with a health coach.  A health coach will help guide you, mentor you, and motivate you along the way and help you with the day to day challenges and frustrations and how to execute.  But at the end of the day, you need to do the work. The coach will call you out (in a loving and respectful way, hopefully) hold you accountable and provide resources to guide you along the way. 

A registered dietitian on the other hand will provide you with specific meal plans and focus only on dietary recommendations and how to work with you on eating the right foods especially if you have a certain health condition.  A personal trainer will focus on exercises that will strengthen your body, burn more calories, etc.   

I’ve worked with both in the past and was even a personal trainer earlier in my career.  And in case you didn’t know, I actually started off as a Dietetics major in college because I wanted to become a Registered Dietitian.  I think both roles are important, however, if behavior change is what you’re looking for, a health coach might be a better option because they will be able to wrap it all together for you and help you move forward. But again, it depends on what you’re looking for.  You could potentially work with all 3 at the same time.  If you’re interested in working with me, here is more info http://brendasillas.com/shop-work-with-me/ 


#4 results and testimonials


How have they helped other people and what are some of the results they’ve achieved? Everyone is different and will achieve different results but it all depends on where they started and what the person was looking to achieve.  Your health coach should have some testimonials, references and/or real results from people like you.  Personally, I’m not too big on those before and after pictures of people in their underwear – I would never ask my clients to share that with me or post it.  I think it’s too personal.  But if they want to share that on their own, it’s up to them.  The testimonials your health coach shares should be well rounded including some that talk about pounds or kilos lost, complete transformations in mind, body and spirit and of course how the coaching has impacted other areas of their life. Here is an example of some testimonials http://brendasillas.com/testimonials/ 


#5 strategy, plan or system


Your health coach should have a proven strategy, plan, system or approach on how they will help you:

– Assess where you are

– Identify realistic goals

– Establish a customized plan that will be tweaked as needed

– Execute daily and get through those challenging moments (let’s be real!)

– Stay accountable and call you out.

– Measure your results. 

For example, my clients get a comprehensive, and customized strategic plan when they work with me that captures no more than 3 goals and exactly what we’ve agreed on to help them achieve or exceed those goals.  Then, we meet every 2 weeks via phone, skype or in person (if it makes sense geographically) to discuss what worked and/or what needs to change.  


If you have questions about what it would be like to work with me send me an email brenda@brendasillas.com or connect with me on Facebook, Instagram or LinkedIn



Brenda Sillas is a high impact Weight Loss Strategist & Holistic Health Coach for busy, driven entrepreneurs and professionals, she helps individuals lose weight, be overfilled with natural energy, and change their relationship with food through online programs, personalized coaching and The Brenda Sillas Diet – A 10 Day Jumpstart to Weight Loss guide. Among other things, she is also an Author, former National Physique Committee competitor, Mother of 2, Keynote Speaker, and the Senior Workforce Health Consultant for the San Diego region of the nation’s top not for profit Health Plan.

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