In 2008 I was living in New York City and working in political fundraising. I worked hard at it but even after eight years it still felt like a job. I wasn’t passionate about it and it was taking a toll on my health leaving me anxious, tired, and sleep deprived. It was even affecting my relationships with my family and friends. I just felt blah, I needed purpose, and something I could be passionate about.
When you’re floundering, New York City is a pretty fortunate place to be with seemingly endless opportunities. I committed myself to uncovering my true passion and purpose, and a set of happy coincidences put me on the path to becoming a holistic health coach.
I’d been spending a lot of time reading about the obesity epidemic children in the US are facing today and the deeper I dug the more confused and curious I became about our country’s food system. Good fortune led me to run into a friend from college who told me about the life-changing experience she’d had at the Institute for Integrative Nutrition (IIN). The IIN was not only in NYC, but was also beginning a new session in a few months, the classes were on the weekends, which meant I could continue working. I could explore my passion and learn how to help others lead healthier lives. This was my answer.
Like many people, I was so confused about our food system and the millions of diets out there. One day we are supposed to eat no fat, no sugar, no carbs, and then the next day eat lots of meat, cheese, no nuts. Ahhh!! It can drive a person crazy. I thought I was doing well by eating a “healthier” version of the Standard American Diet. I ate turkey sandwiches on whole-wheat bread, put spinach and black beans in my whole-wheat quesadillas and stuffed them with low fat cheese. I honestly thought I was making good, healthy choices.
My very first weekend attending IIN, I learned that the number one thing missing from the Standard American Diet is dark leafy greens. That was me. I don’t think I had ever even eaten kale before. I started my new journey by making green smoothies in the morning. The more I learned, the more changes I made. I continued by cutting out dairy and adding in lots of whole grains like quinoa, kamut, and brown rice.
In six short weeks, I felt like a cloud had been lifted from so many aspects of my life. I had more energy, my relationships improved, my clothes fit better and my family commented on how I looked. I was de-bloated, my skin was clearer and I was just a happier more glowing person. What was intended as a career change ended up becoming so much more, a total lifestyle change.
The knowledge I now have and the changes I’ve made have freed me of constant anxiety, stomachaches, and poor sleep and given me clarity into a life that fulfills me from the inside out.
In 2010 my sister Adri Warrick and I, both certified holistic health coaches, started the Whole Tulip to help people learn to eat better, navigate the crazy, confusing food system and in turn feel and live better.
We all want to provide what’s best for ourselves and our families but eating healthy whole foods can feel overwhelming, confusing and way too time-consuming. There is no lack of conflicting information available and it’s all the more difficult to make informed decisions when you’re rushing home at five o’clock with hungry children clamoring, deadlines looming and endless priorities to juggle. I get it, now living in Charlotte, NC with my husband and four-year-old son, 6-month-old daughter it’s a constant balance but one I thrive off of.
Contact Carolyn at email@example.com
My journey to becoming a holistic health coach was winding but in retrospect, it was definitely meant to be. One of my most vivid childhood memories of my mother was her practicing yoga in our living room. No one had even heard of yoga 30 years ago but she decided to become a certified yoga instructor. As the mother of three young girls she knew she absolutely needed something to keep her calm and sane, and it was that or alcohol.
After college, I entered the finance world and it didn’t take long for me to realize my true interest lie in how the body works and what it needs to succeed. I went back to school and became a neuromuscular massage therapist and maintained a small practice while being a full-time mom.
In 2005 I had my first of two sons born and while I loved being a new mother, I was exhausted all the time. When the kids napped, I napped. Any opportunity I had to sit down, I sat. My focus was my kids and, besides fitting in regular workouts, there was not much more time for me. I certainly did not place any value on the fact that what I was eating, or not eating, could have a profound impact on how I felt and how much I could to give to others, especially my husband.
It was Carolyn’s (my sister and the other tulip) decision to become a holistic health coach that inspired me to take the next step in my journey to learn how to take care of the whole self.
When I went back to school to become a holistic health coach my life totally transformed. I had no idea how eating the right foods could change my life. I went from having little to no energy, severe PMS, IBS, headaches, seasonal allergies, eczema and sleeping poorly to having an abundance of true energy, more patience, little to no PMS, a happy GI, NO eczema, NO seasonal allergies and sound sleep. My skin became clearer, my hair was shinier and my nails were stronger. My focus and struggle with weight became obsolete. My battles with calorie counting and portion control disappeared and I found peace with my body. I began to love food and love the way food made me feel. Finding the foods that loved me back gave me a freedom I didn’t even know I was looking for.
The process to feed my family well is a steady journey. It hasn’t happened overnight but the changes have been dramatic. My husband has lost almost 20 pounds by working out, eating the foods I cook and making smart choices when he eats out. He is grateful for what I am providing for our family and his support is the reason I have been able to take on this new chapter in my life.
My kids have not had a sick visit since we have cut out the majority of processed foods. However, they are kids and given the opportunity they will choose sugar but they have come a long way and eat a variety of whole foods and continue to add more items each day. It is not always pretty and it is not even close to perfect but I am committed to feeding myself and my family well.
I am committed to helping others find the freedom, joy and happiness that I have found through a life of eating and living well. I may not have loved the fact that we couldn’t have Doritos and Lucky Charms growing up and I may not have understood why my mother needed an hour a day to herself for her yoga practice but I know now that I am who I am because of her example. Some days eating well may seem like an uphill battle but in my mind, it is one worth fighting for. It is a priceless gift we can give our families and ourselves.
In 2010 my sister Carolyn Hallett and I, both certified holistic health coaches, started the Whole Tulip to help people learn to eat better, navigate the crazy, confusing food system and in turn feel and live better.
Contact Adri: AdriWarrick@gmail.com