Grow Your Nutrition Business Podcast Episode 112: Top 5 Costly Mistakes When Building A Nutrition Coaching Program In A Gym & How To Avoid Them

Today’s guest is Lindsay McDonald, Chief of Staff and Senior Mentor at Healthy Steps Nutrition Mentoring.
Lindsay heads up the initial training program for new gyms owners who have partnered with Healthy Steps Nutrition to launch and grow a professional habit-based coaching program in their gym.
In today’s episode, Nicole Aucoin and Lindsay McDonald discuss:
-The top 5 mistakes that gym owners make when building a nutrition coaching program
-How to avoid these mistakes
-One actionable tip to help you fix these mistakes if you are making them right now.
They discuss things like picking the right coach to run your nutrition program and avoiding the nutrition challenge trap.
If you are a gym owner looking to save time and not reinvent the wheel when building a nutrition coaching program, click the link HERE to see how it works with HSN Mentoring and book a free call today.
*All training courses and ongoing mentoring are approved for CrossFit Training CEUs. The Basics of Nutrition Coaching, CrossFit Preferred Nutrition Course, is included in the HSN Mentoring program.

Top 5 Mistakes That Gym Owners Make When Building A Nutrition Coaching Program

Mistake #1: Intake process

The front end offer is the first thing that a brand new member is exposed to, what your business is about and what solutions you offer.
The new client is there with a problem, a goal and a reason. You need to make sure that you are bundling  fitness and nutrition from the very first conversation that you are having with individuals, because in reality that’s going to get them closer to their goals.
At HSN HQ, our front end is structured to start off with an onramp for personal training sessions. New clients start off with three months of nutrition coaching, and it is tiered based on accountability and support.
Action Steps:
  • Opt in to your new lead sequence.
  • Share a story of a client, get quotes, Google reviews that include nutrition, fitness accountability.
  • Roleplay the free intro process.

Mistake #2: Trying to create a program from scratch every single time

As a gym owner you want to provide the best experience to your clients, because they’re going to see better results.
If you don’t have systems in place, it’s not going to be consistent experience.
Ultimately, you are not going to be able to serve as many people that need help in your community.
Action Steps:
  • If you’re a gym owner,  sign up as a client of your nutrition coaching program to see the experience, to see if it’s what you want to deliver to your clients.
  • If you’re a nutrition coach, sign up with HSN see what we do. Book a Free Intro with HSN >>here.

Mistake #3: Finding the right fit or appointing the wrong fit to run your nutrition coaching program

Nutrition coaching is very different from fitness coaching.
Really take the time to evaluate your potential nutrition coach. The best fit for the position is going to be someone who is positive. Nutrition coaching is all about relationships. This person will need to be able to have a conversation with anyone, be relatable and have empathy.
Nurses and teachers make great nutrition coaches, but also people that have been through their own transformation themselves.
Ask these questions when finding the best fit for your nutrition coach:
Is this the right person for the role?
Is it the face of the program that I really want to put out there?
What are their intentions?
Where do their passions lie?
Action Steps:
  • We recommend that you have the nutrition coach sign up as a client themselves first, so they can see what it looks like from a client’s perspective.

Mistake #4: Challenge trap

This is the biggest mistake gym owners make today.
The problem is that nutrition support ends at the end of the challenge.
Giving someone 28 or 30 days of support and then not being able to provide continued support, won’t hold them accountable.
Action Steps:
  • What is your client journey? What are people doing before they get started with the nutrition challenge? And what is the option for them to continue after the challenge is over. This needs to be figured out before you even start planning your actual nutrition challenge.
  • Your first challenge should be in the beginning of the year – (end of January, February or March). The best time for a second challenge is in the Fall.
  • Charge appropriately for your challenge so people are interested in moving onto ongoing coaching.

Mistake #5: Coach development

There are only so many things a coach can learn from going through an online course without having a 2 way conversation, they won’t fully benefit from the training.
Nutrition Coaches need to be always working on their craft.
As a gym owner, ask yourself:
How are your coaches growing?
How are your coaches honing their skills?
How are they keeping up to date with the best recommendations for their clients?
Action Steps:
  • Gym owners need to outsource to the experts for support in coach development. 
  • At HSN Mentoring, the monthly mentoring calls and interactive weekly coaches corner calls are the biggest source of support to help grow the coach.

For Additional Support listen to this Grow Your Nutrition Business Podcast Episode: The Value Of Role Playing To Build A Nutrition Program In A Gym >>HERE

Did you know that HSN Mentoring has a turn-key solution for gym owners to build a nutrition program in-house?

HSN Mentoring is the largest nutrition mentorship business in the world, helping thousands of gym owners and coaches build successful nutrition programs.

All training and ongoing mentoring is approved for CrossFit CEUs

Additional FREE Help Related To
Building A Nutrition Program In A Gym

  • LISTEN: Inside The Nutrition Program At CrossFit Brighton & How Nutrition Coach, Darcie Helped Brent Lose 100 Pounds HERE
  • LISTEN: How To Build A Nutrition Program Into A CrossFit Gym HERE
  • LISTEN: Nutrition Made Simple Podcast – CrossFit, Nutrition & Your Health HERE

Register Now For The 2022
Healthy Steps Nutrition Live Workshop

What To Expect:
  • Learn how to build your business into a house of wellness to promote optimal health and fight chronic disease
  • Impact more people through employee wellness and partnerships
  • Breakout sessions led by the experts to provide you with individualized feedback
  • Workbook to help you apply the information shared and create a clear plan to take action
  • This event is limited to 200 participants

10-Year Anniversary Video of Healthy Steps Nutrition

A Few Stories From Clark's Team Has Captured...

Ryan Stemper, Founder, Whole Strength CrossFit & Nutrition In Nashville, TN

Meagan, Director of Nutrition and Nutrition Coach at Whole Strength CrossFit & Nutrition

Jocelyn & Barry, Owners of CrossFit Generation, A 14-Year CrossFit Affiliate

About the author

Nicole Aucoin, MS, RD, LD/N

Founder, Healthy Steps Nutrition
Home of CrossFit HSN & HSN Mentoring

Author of Nourish & Healthy Kids Cookbook

Author of The Basics of Nutrition Coaching Course, CrossFit Preferred Nutrition Course

CrossFit Level 2 Trainer