Archive October 2019

The Precision Nutrition Level 1 Certification: Frequently Asked Questions.

The Precision Nutrition Level 1 Certification: Frequently Asked Questions.

On Wednesday, December 4th, 2019, we’re opening registration for the brand-new Precision Nutrition Level 1 Certification, the world’s most respected nutrition education program.

Developed over 15 years, and proven with over 100,000 clients, the Precision Nutrition curriculum stands alone as the authority on the science of nutrition and the art of coaching.  It gives you the knowledge, systems, and tools you need to feel both confident and qualified to coach nutrition with anyone.

Whether you’re already mid-career, or just starting out, the PN Level 1 Certification is your springboard to a deeper understanding of nutrition, the authority to coach it, and the ability to turn what you know into results—for yourself and your clients.

For more about the program, check out the frequently asked questions below.

But, first, watch this short video; it provides a full breakdown of the program, including interviews with renowned coaches like Eric Cressey, Molly Galbraith, Adam Lloyd, and Jon Goodman:

Precision Nutrition co-founder Dr. John Berardi gives you a sneak peek at the Level 1 Certification.
(Plus, industry leaders share their thoughts on the program).

 

 

As we’re about to open the program—and last time we sold out in hours—we’re getting lots of questions. Here we’ll answer the most common ones so you can decide if it’s a good choice for you.

  • What is the Precision Nutrition Certification?
  • What will the Precision Nutrition Certification do for me?
  • How was the Precision Nutrition Certification developed?
  • What happens after I get certified?
  • How do I sign up?

What is the Precision Nutrition Certification?

Q: What’s the program all about?
A:

Developed over 15 years, and proven with over 100,000 clients, the Precision Nutrition Level 1 curriculum stands alone as the authority on the science of nutrition and the art of coaching.

Whether you’re already mid-career, or just starting out, the Level 1 Certification is your springboard to a deeper understanding of nutrition, the authority to coach it, and the ability to turn what you know into results.

This means you’ll feel qualified to offer nutrition advice and confident in your ability to coach anyone to better health and fitness.

But, here’s the thing:

You don’t have to currently work in, or operate, a health and fitness practice to benefit from the Precision Nutrition Certification.

Many people who join the program see it as their first major step toward becoming a health and fitness professional. (Often they’re still in the job they plan to leave for this new career).

Yet others complete our certification program simply to learn more about how nutrition influences a person’s health and fitness… so they can eat better themselves and help others do the same.

Q: I heard the Level 1 Certification was recently updated. Is that true?
A:

Yes, it’s a brand-new, completely updated 4th edition.

Since we first launched the Precision Nutrition Certification, we’ve been the definitive source of nutrition education for health and fitness professionals who want to catapult their careers and make a difference in people’s lives. Yet we’re never satisfied with yesterday’s success.

Nutrition science is dynamic, new discoveries are made almost daily. And that’s just on the research side. As we continue to coach our own clients (over 100,000 and counting), we’re discovering new methods of helping them achieve real, lasting behavior change.

As we train and certify health and fitness professionals (over 70,000 and counting), we’re also uncovering the best ways to help our Certification students learn, retain, and apply the material.

That’s why we’ve spent the better part of this year re-envisioning and redesigning the program from the ground up.

Here’s what’s new…

New “skills, practice, and action” framework

It’s one thing to read and retain information. It’s an entirely different thing to actually apply what you’re learning and start getting results right away.

This was our focus in this 4th edition: To teach you the theory and to help you practice what you’re learning, so that you can start getting life-changing results with your clients from Day One of the program.

We’ve designed the entire curriculum in a way that helps you immediately apply your new knowledge.

  • Practice-based approach. Along with reading the textbooks, watching the videos, and answering your workbook questions, you’ll also get the opportunity to practice what you’re learning throughout the entire program. By the end, your nutrition coaching skills will be second nature to you.
  • Step-by-step learning process, for immediate results. You can read a chapter in the morning, and use what you learned in your afternoon sessions.
  • Active learning tools. From case studies, to “try it now” exercises, to your own “Learner’s Manual,” we’ll give you all the tools you need to use what you’re learning in the real world, right away.

Newly updated 4th edition of the Precision Nutrition
Level 1 Certification

This latest version of the program is more valuable and practical than ever. Inside you’ll find:

  • 3 unit textbooks, beautifully packaged in a box set—to give you everything you need to know about nutrition, behavior-change psychology, and coaching practice (click here to download the table of contents). Plus, it’s easy to carry from your house, to the car, to the gym, so you can study anywhere!
  • 20 animated instructional video seminars, to help you better understand each chapter (check out a sample video below).
  • Workbook and study guide, with exercises and thought experiments to help prepare you for the end-of-chapter exams.
  • Real-world case studies, drawn from our work with over 100,000 clients, to help you practice and retain the powerful new concepts you’re learning.
  • Over 40 premium coaching tools, including assessment forms and questionnaires, to help you learn more about your clients and unlock their full potential (click here to download an overview of the questionnaires and assessments).

The brand-new 4th Edition of the Precision Nutrition Level 1 Certification is beautifully packaged in a box set and packed with the latest research and proven coaching practices.

As promised, here’s “What is a great coach?”—which supplements Chapter 3 of the text. (Remember, every chapter has a video like this, to go along with the text.)

 

 

With the Precision Nutrition Level 1 Certification, you’ll learn nutrition coaching the right way, from the company that Nike, Equinox, Titleist, and professional athletes worldwide turn to for advice and expertise.

Now, more than ever, our certification is guaranteed to give you a one-of-a-kind education experience—plus the knowledge and confidence to coach nutrition with anyone who comes to you for help.

That’s why top organizations like this come to us for help:

And companies like:

And major media outlets like:

Extremely successful launch of ProCoach

In addition to releasing the 4th edition of our Certification materials, we’ve also launched ProCoach. This cutting-edge nutrition coaching software allows Precision Nutrition Level 1 Certification students and grads to use our proven methods with the people they coach in an easy and scalable way.

Precision Nutrition ProCoach

Tested with over 100,000 clients, ProCoach makes it easy to deliver world-class nutrition coaching to clients. Now you can grow your practice while working less and getting better results.

We knew our system was in high demand, but the response to ProCoach—and the results health and fitness professionals are already seeing with their clients—far exceeded our expectations. Once you begin the Level 1 Certification program, ProCoach will be available to you and the people you help, too.

The PN Method validated in scientific journals

The Precision Nutrition method, which drives our Certification and ProCoach programs, was recently validated in 3 peer-reviewed studies. This means that the system you’ll learn in the Level 1 program is truly “evidence-based.” In fact, we’re the only nutrition certification company in the world that successfully coaches real clients every single day. 

Our method was recently validated in peer-reviewed studies, which were published in Internet Interventions, the Journal of Cancer Survivorship, and Obesity Science and Practice.

Having tested it with over 100,000 clients, we know our system is highly effective at helping people lose fat, build strength, and make big health improvements. Now the medical and scientific communities know it too.

Community of like-minded people + top experts

As a PN Level 1 student, you’ll get instant access to our private Facebook community. Now you’ll be able to learn alongside an extremely supportive group of over 35,000 coaches, physicians, trainers, nutritionists, researchers, therapists, yoga teachers, and other health and fitness professionals from all over the world.

You’ll also get daily access to some of our revered expert coaches like Brian St. Pierre, MS, RD, Dr. Krista Scott-Dixon, Adam Feit, PhD(c), Dr. Helen Kollias, Kate Solovieva, MA Pscyh, and more.

As part of the Precision Nutrition Certification community you can: Ask questions. Get feedback and advice. Nerd out on all things fitness, nutrition, and health.

What will the Precision Nutrition Certification do for me?

Q: Why offer a certification like this?
A:

Because an effective nutrition coaching system is the missing component in the health and fitness industry today.

If a health intervention or exercise program isn’t accompanied by an effective nutrition system, you’ll get mediocre results—no matter how badly the client or patient “wants it.”

The fact is this: Many very good coaches, in a variety of health and fitness fields, see their efforts go to waste because their excellent programs aren’t accompanied by a proper nutrition intervention. And that’s not merely our opinion.

To give you a very specific example: There’s ample research demonstrating that in the absence of nutrition change, even very intense exercise programs with experienced trainers, will yield an average of merely 3 to 6 pounds of fat loss in 6 months’ time.

Think about that: A client would spend $3,000-$5,000 for 6 months with a personal trainer, only to lose a few measly, unnoticeable pounds of body fat. That’s not good.

To give you a counter example, in our Precision Nutrition Coaching program, clients average around 15 pounds of fat loss in the first 6 months. That’s nearly 3 times as effective.

In Precision Nutrition Coaching, we provide both exercise and nutrition coaching, and that’s the difference.

But keep in mind: Our coaching is 100 percent online. They get those results without ever meeting us in person.

If they work with a coach or trainer while doing Precision Nutrition Coaching (which can help them work harder in the gym and stay accountable locally), they lose closer to 25 pounds of fat in 6 months. That’s over 4 times as effective.

(Of course, nutrition coaching isn’t just about fat loss. It’s also about building strength, improving health, feeling energetic, and more. We’re just using fat loss as an example.)

So something is missing, and that something is nutrition coaching.

That’s why we developed the certification program: To teach health and fitness professionals both the science of nutrition and the art of coaching. Because once you really understand both, on a deep level, you can deliver results that are impossible with exercise alone.

Equally rooted in the latest nutrition science and behavior-change psychology, the Certification offers a proven and practical coaching system that shows you exactly what to do at every stage of the nutrition coaching process—from the very first time you meet with a client, until they reach all of their goals.

Precision Nutrition Certification

 

 

Q: What do you mean when you say, “Exercise alone doesn’t work”?
A:

We mean exactly that: Exercise alone doesn’t work.

If a person doesn’t change their nutrition, nothing else they do will matter much when it comes to body composition change (fat loss, muscle gain) and the associated health improvements.

And that’s what 95 percent of people are looking for, isn’t it?

Simply put, the past 25 years of published scientific research show that while exercise alone can promote very small changes in body fat, lean mass, and the associated health markers, those changes are almost negligible.

In fact, one published review, a meta-analysis of more than 700 previous exercise studies done over 25 years, showed that about 6 months of supervised exercise programming will produce only 9 pounds of weight lost.

If we assume 50 percent of that weight lost is fat (which is a safe assumption, based on the research), that means that clients can expect to lose around 4.5 pounds of fat during a 6-month training program.

So, let’s assume a client meets with their trainer four times a week at $50 an hour. That’s $200 per week, $800 per month, and $4,800 for 6 months. All for 4.5 pounds of fat lost? That’s a cost of $1,000 per pound of fat lost.

After all that time and money spent, would an overweight client even notice 4.5 pounds fat loss? Would their cholesterol be significantly lower? Would they feel like they got their money’s worth?

Not likely.

Q: What results can I expect when I integrate nutrition coaching into my current practice?
A:

Again, let’s look at one comparator, Precision Nutrition Coaching, which incorporates both exercise and nutrition.

During the first 6 months of the online-only program, the average fat loss is around 15 pounds. In addition, we see hundreds of reports of clients being taken off blood pressure, cardiovascular disease and diabetes medications.

If that client uses our exercise and nutrition system while working with a trainer in-person, they’ll see an average of 25 pounds of fat loss over the course of 6 months.

And the best performers are losing up to 100 pounds in 12 months. It’s quite amazing.

So with the right exercise and the right nutrition programming, supervised by an in-person coach, the cost per pound of fat loss can go down from $1000 per pound to $100 per pound. That’s nearly 5 times the fat loss and 10 times the cost-effectiveness.

If you’re a health and fitness professional, imagine how in-demand you’d be if you could regularly deliver results like that.

It’s absolutely possible. In fact, it’s what we should expect. But no one is teaching this stuff.

Nothing out there covers the specific problem: How to deliver nutrition coaching in an exercise, personal training, health, rehab, or sport coaching environment. And that’s why we created this certification.

We wanted to create a new kind of program: one that helps professionals become body (and health) transformation experts, and one that helps clients get the kind of results they deserve.

The Precision Nutrition Certification is a massive step in that direction.

For more on the kinds of results you can expect, check out this video:

 

 

Q: Would nutritionists and dietitians benefit from this program as well?
A:

Absolutely. In fact, we wish every dietitian would find their way to this program and get involved.

Although RDs have excellent training in all aspects of clinical nutrition, most dietetics programs don’t even offer a sport and exercise nutrition course. If they do, the course is usually too general to be of any use in the field.

Trust us. We know because we’ve taught in dietetics departments. Just because someone has earned an RD or LD credential doesn’t mean they’re done learning. The best dietitians, physicians, trainers, and coaches make lifelong education an important priority.

The Precision Nutrition Certification program would be an asset for every dietitian.

Q: Can I earn CEUs from my training or dietetics organization with this program?
A:

Most likely. The curriculum is pre-qualified for CEUs with the following organizations:

  • ACE (2.0 CECs)
  • ACSM (20 CECs)
  • CDR (16 CPEUs)
  • CPTN (14 CECs)
  • CrossFit® (20 CEUs)
  • NASM (1.9 CEUs)
  • PTA Global (24 CECs)
  • REPs UK (16 CPDs)
  • USA Cycling (15 CEUs)

This means that, if you are certified by any of the groups listed above, CEUs are guaranteed upon successful completion of the course.

We should also note that a host of additional organizations accept our course on a one-off basis. For these, graduates from our program submit a summary of the course and their certificate for review.

How was the Precision Nutrition Certification developed?

Q: What qualifies you to teach a course / offer a certification like this?
A:

First and foremost, we’re practitioners, not just theorists. In fact, we’re the only nutrition certification company in the world that coaches our own clients, in addition to educating health and fitness professionals.

We’re in the trenches every day, coaching thousands of people around the world, from all walks of life. We’re constantly improving our coaching process based on our own learnings from the field, along with the latest research in nutrition science, exercise physiology, and behavior-change psychology.

Our team includes some of the best nutritionists, PhDs, dietitians, and specialists in the industry.

For example, Dr. John Berardi, Precision Nutrition’s co-founder and co-author of the Level 1 program, has had vast exposure to almost every aspect of health, fitness, and nutrition. He’s been:

  • A student of nutrition, completing his Ph.D. in Exercise Physiology and Nutrient Biochemistry at the University of Western Ontario.
  • A teacher of nutrition at multiple universities, including the University of Texas, Eastern Michigan University, and the University of Western Ontario.
  • A competitive physique athlete, winning Mr. Jr. USA in 1995.
  • A personal trainer, running a successful training business in Miami.
  • A researcher who has published studies in peer-reviewed academic journals.
  • An author of over half a dozen nutrition books and hundreds of articles in magazines like Men’s Health, Women’s Health, and many more.
  • A consultant to companies like Nike, Equinox and Titleist.
  • A nutrition coach to thousands of everyday people and quite a few pro athletes and Olympic gold medalists.

So apart from being qualified academically, he has a pretty unique perspective—one that’s very well-suited to teaching this material, especially to professionals.

Dr. Berardi has seen the field of nutrition from more angles, both personally and professionally, than almost anyone else teaching nutrition today.

In addition, he’s written chapters for other nutrition textbooks, he’s created Masters-level university courses on sport nutrition, and he’s created nutrition certification material for other certifying bodies.

So he has extensive experience creating academic course material.

But most of all, we think our team is qualified to teach this because we’ve used and tested this very system extensively with our own clients here at Precision Nutrition.

Remember: Precision Nutrition isn’t just a certification company.

Over the past 15 years, through our Precision Nutrition Coaching system, we’ve been quietly conducting the largest body transformation research project in the world.

We’ve had over 100,000 clients go through our nutrition coaching curriculum, doing what is essentially a total exercise, nutrition and lifestyle intervention.

The purpose of this coaching is simple: to help people lose fat, gain lean mass, and completely transform their bodies (and lives).

Now, here’s the thing: Since the entire program is online, we’re able to collect data on everything. And we mean everything.

Because we don’t see clients in person, we can’t “eyeball” things. We need data. So we have detailed psychometric (personality) profiles on our clients. We track compliance and every measurable and relevant behavior. And, of course, we regularly collect photos and monitor body composition and performance outcomes.

As a result of this rigorous data collection, we’re guessing we here at Precision Nutrition know, better than almost anyone else in the world, which variables are most important to body transformation success.

Now, remember, we’re not talking about what we think is correlated to success. We’re talking about what we absolutely know is correlated with success. Success here means compliance, consistency, and ultimately, fat loss, muscle gain, and life-changing health improvements.

It takes a long time to gather this kind of information, especially since no one in the health or fitness industry has ever done anything like it before. But now that it’s been gathered, analyzed, and tested, we believe it’s time to share it.

From there, the Precision Nutrition Certification was born.

Precision Nutrition Certification

 

 

Q: How does the Precision Nutrition Certification compare to other nutrition education options?
A:

First, it’s based on real client data and our own coaching experience.

We’re not really a certification organization. We’re coaches. So this is coming from first-hand knowledge that we use ourselves every day.

This certification is based on real client results, and a reliable and reproducible system for monitoring and achieving those results. That’s what you learn when you become Precision Nutrition Certified.

Second, it’s designed specifically for people passionate about nutrition and fitness—including health and fitness professionals. Many of our students are coaches, therapists, physicians, dietitians, and nutritionists working with people who exercise.

That’s very important, because most nutrition courses suffer from at least one of two big problems.

Problem 1: They have little or nothing to do with exercising clients looking for health or body transformation.

Most credible nutrition education today is meant for people looking to become professors, researchers (people who work at universities), or clinical dietitians (people who work at hospitals). If you want to do any of that, you go to college, study for years and get a Ph.D. or an R.D. Both noble professions.

Our co-founder John Berardi got a Ph.D. in the field, so we’re not knocking it. Brian St. Pierre, who co-wrote the textbooks for the Precision Nutrition Certification, earned both a master’s degree and R.D. and worked at prestigious hospitals and research institutes. And both Krista Scott-Dixon and Helen Kollias, our other co-authors, earned Ph.D.s at respected universities.

But neither of those roads teach you how to actually coach an exercising client through a health and body transformation. That’s a very specific skill set, requiring both an understanding of the science of nutrition and—this is critical—a reliable system for coaching it.

So unlike anything else out there right now, the Precision Nutrition Certification does both of those things. It was designed from the ground up, specifically for people who work with, or are looking to work with, clients.

Problem 2: Most of the nutrition certification programs out there are, well, kind of a joke.

We just Googled “nutrition certification” and found thousands of results. Yikes. The situation is bleak.

Of the non-university level nutrition certifications out there, we see plenty of garbage, quite frankly. Weekend seminars, no exams, no studying. Lots of rubber stamping.

Some are more challenging, for sure, and probably a few are even worth the money. We don’t know—we can’t look at the Google results for very long before getting depressed.

We’d like to sum it up this way: If you’re here, reading this, you’ve probably followed us for some time and you probably think a lot like us. And so we suspect you will probably benefit more from the Precision Nutrition Certification than from any other non-university level nutrition education you’re likely to find.

That’s just our gut feeling, so take it for what it’s worth.

But here’s something that’s not a gut feeling, but rather a fact from our own customer-purchase data: A good number of the CEOs and staff of other nutrition companies are Precision Nutrition Certified. We’re not kidding when we say this: We’re the experts that other experts come to for help.

Ron_PN_Team_Member

 

 

Q: Will there be multiple levels of certification?
A:

Yes, two.

This is the first, the Precision Nutrition Level 1 Certification, and includes the textbooks, the online material, and the online exam.

Essentially, Level 1 certifies that you have a solid understanding of nutrition science and coaching. Once you pass the exam, you get a Level 1 certificate acknowledging your completion of that part of the certification program.

Some people will stop there. And that’s cool with us. With the Level 1 certificate, they’ll be equipped with the knowledge and tools to help people improve their bodies and health through better nutrition.

The Precision Nutrition Level 2 Master Class is only open to students and graduates of the Level 1 program.

The Level 2 student is required to do an online mentorship, perform regular research reviews, and produce client case studies showing that they can actually deliver results. Level 2 certifies that you can take the theory and apply it with your clients all the way through a successful health and body transformation.

So, unlike other nutrition certification programs, the Precision Nutrition Certification has both a self-paced component where you learn the material (Level 1) and a mentorship component where you practice under the watchful eye of a world-class coach (Level 2).

Those who complete both levels will be among the best in the world at getting results.

Q: How long does it take to complete the Level 1 program?
A:

The Precision Nutrition Level 1 Certification is entirely self-paced, so there’s no deadline. You can take as much or as little time as you like.

The pace that seems to work best for most of our students is completing one chapter per week. That means reading the chapter, reviewing the online video, answering the workbook questions, and writing the 10-question exam.

If you follow that structure, you can expect to spend 3-5 hours per week on the certification materials. Since there are 20 total chapters, you’d earn your Precision Nutrition Certification in a little over four and a half months.

But here’s the best part: You don’t need to wait to get certified in order to feel confident and qualified to coach nutrition. Since you’ll be learning and practicing from Day One, you’ll be in a perfect position to start helping your clients immediately.

Q: How do I stay committed and on track if the program is self-paced?
A:

That part is easy.

In addition to the printed materials you’ll receive (i.e. textbooks, workbook, client assessment forms), you’ll also get access to our online course platform.

The platform hosts our educational videos, case studies, online quizzes (one per chapter), and innovative learning tools to help you practice and retain the material. It also encourages (and tracks) your progress.

In the end, we built the online platform ourselves based on the best practices of distance-based education. Most students find it the perfect blend of flexibility and accountability. And the proof is in our graduation rate, which is well above the industry standard.

Q: How about Level 2?
A:

The Level 2 program is an in-depth online mentorship that takes 12 months to complete.

And, as discussed above, it’s only available to Precision Nutrition Level 1 students and graduates.

Q: Do I need to have a science degree to become certified?
A:

No. We assume no prior knowledge of biology, chemistry, etc., and so we don’t require a university degree.

Now, if you were terrible in science, you can expect some parts of this certification to be semi-challenging. But if you’re willing to read and understand new concepts, you can definitely learn the material.

Q: Is this program accredited by a national education board?
A:

No, it’s not accredited by any of the national education boards.

If you want letters and a rubber stamp, there are organizations for that. At Precision Nutrition, we’re all about passing on important and life-changing knowledge. We’ll leave all the bureaucratic hoops to other organizations.

However, we should mention that we are recognized as a continuing education provider by the top fitness and nutrition organizations in the world (see below). In addition, as mentioned above, our course material is approved for teaching at the master’s level.

What happens after I get certified?

Q: Once I’m Precision Nutrition Certified, will I be listed on your site?
A:

Yes. And given our exposure online, that’s a big advantage for Precision Nutrition Certified professionals. As we grow our online coaching programs, that advantage will grow with it.

For example: Our coaching clients are often interested in finding a local coach, one who actually knows what the heck they’re doing, to help them out with their new exercise movements, etc.

In the past, we had no one to send them to.

We can’t just send them blindly into the local fitness club with their Precision Nutrition exercise and nutrition program in hand. It would be a disaster.

So with the Precision Nutrition Certification we’re creating an army of health and fitness coaches who actually get it. Coaches who our readers, clients, and customers can trust.

What’s more, by being Precision Nutrition Certified, coaches will be part of a network of local professionals that we trust and that we can refer our own clients to.

Once you’re certified, you’ll have a professional profile in our new online directory of Precision Nutrition Certified Professionals, so you’ll be easy to find when people are looking for local help.

Precision Nutrition Certification

 

 

Q: Are there any requirements to maintain my certification?
A:

As a Precision Nutrition Level 1 Certified professional, you’re required to re-write an exam every two years from your date of course completion to keep your certification current.

Taking an exam every two years will ensure your knowledge is up-to-date, and you’re still practicing at the top of your field.

If you take the recertification exam before your Precision Nutrition Level 1 Certification expires, you’ll maintain your status as “certified” in the PN Directory of Certified Professionals. And we’ll send you a new certificate.

Precision Nutrition Certification

 

 

Q: What about those people specifically looking for national accreditation?
A:

People come to Precision Nutrition to get certified because they want the best possible exercise and sport nutrition training—from one of the world’s most recognizable exercise and sport nutrition companies.

For those of you looking for some other end, like national accreditation (which often means that the program has been reviewed by your government; and we all know how awesome they are at offering nutrition information), give us a shout at info@precisionnutrition.com.

There are other programs for that and we’ll be happy to point you to those types of certification programs.

Q: What advice will someone be able to offer clients or after completing the course?
A:

That’s a great question and one we cover in-depth in the course.

Most health and fitness professionals are allowed to make nutrition recommendations to otherwise healthy clients. So even without the Precision Nutrition Certification, most folks can make nutrition recommendations. What we’re offering is a much better system for making those recommendations.

The only scope of practice that’s restricted is Medical Nutrition Therapy (MNT), which means giving nutrition advice to treat or cure disease. You won’t be qualified to do this, and you should never try, unless you’re specifically MNT-accredited.

Q: What are other people saying about the program?
A:

The feedback on the Precision Nutrition Level 1 Certification has been overwhelmingly positive.

In the past 7 years we’ve enrolled over 70,000 students in the course. And student satisfaction ratings exceed 99 percent, meaning nearly 100 percent of our students rate the course as “excellent.”

And, in case you missed the video above, here are some thoughts from a few of the top coaches in the industry:

Precision Nutrition co-founder Dr. John Berardi gives you a sneak peek at the Level 1 Certification.
(Plus, industry leaders share their thoughts on the program).

 

 

 

How do I sign up?

Q: When does the Precision Nutrition Level 1 Certification program begin?
A:

The next Precision Nutrition Level 1 Certification Program begins on Wednesday, December 4th, 2019. And there won’t be another one until October 2020.

We’re using a cohort (group) model to accept registrations: Registration is limited to a specific period and group size is limited. This ensures we can support you in your learning.

Q: How do I increase my chances of getting a spot in the next Level 1 group?
A:

To get an early bird chance at registration—because the program really does usually sell out within 24 hours—please sign up for the presale list below.

We’ll send you a special link 24 hours before the general public and that’ll increase your chances of getting a spot.

Q: What’s the special discount I’ve heard about?
A:

If you’re on the presale list below and enroll for the program before the general registration opens, you’ll save up to 30% off the cost of the Level 1 Certification program.

The general public price of the Precision Nutrition Level 1 Certification is $119 USD per month for 12 months. However, if you’re on the presale list and sign up on the presale day, you’ll get the opportunity to get it for only $99 USD per month or a one time payment of $999 USD—up to 30% savings.

Q: How can people find out more?
A:

To learn more about the course, and to get on the Level 1 Certification presale list, which gives you a chance to register early, 24 hours before the general public, sign up below.

Once you’re on the list, we’ll follow up with more information about our Level 1 Certification program.

Interested? Add your name to the presale list. You’ll save up to 30% and secure your spot 24 hours before everyone else.

We’ll be opening up spots in our next Precision Nutrition Level 1 Certification on Wednesday, December 4th, 2019.

If you want to find out more, we’ve set up the following presale list, which gives you two advantages.

  • Pay less than everyone else. We like to reward people who are eager to boost their credentials and are ready to commit to getting the education they need. So we’re offering a discount of up to 30% off the general price when you sign up for the presale list.
  • Sign up 24 hours before the general public and increase your chances of getting a spot. We only open the certification program twice per year. Due to high demand, spots in the program are limited and have historically sold out in a matter of hours. But when you sign up for the presale list, we’ll give you the opportunity to register a full 24 hours before anyone else.

If you’re ready for a deeper understanding of nutrition, the authority to coach it, and the ability to turn what you know into results… this is your chance to see what the world’s top professional nutrition coaching system can do for you.

The post The Precision Nutrition Level 1 Certification: Frequently Asked Questions. appeared first on Precision Nutrition.

The Precision Nutrition Level 2 Certification Master Class: Frequently Asked Questions.

The Precision Nutrition Level 2 Certification Master Class: Frequently Asked Questions.

On Wednesday, April 8th, 2020 we’re opening registration for the Precision Nutrition Level 2 Certification, designed specifically for Level 1 students and graduates who realize that knowing how to coach isn’t enough.

Part master class, part grad program, part mentorship, it’s the only course in the world designed to help you master the art of nutrition coaching, meaning better results for your clients and a better business for you.

Want to achieve total confidence in your coaching skills? Get (and keep) more clients? Grow and strengthen your business? If so, the Precision Nutrition Level 2 Certification is definitely for you.

For more about the program, check the frequently asked questions below.

But, first, watch this short video; it provides a full breakdown of the program, including interviews with superstar coaches, physicians, and trainers like Adam Feit, Spencer Nadolsky, Adam Lloyd, Mary Kate Feit, and Will Boggs:

Precision Nutrition co-founder Dr. John Berardi gives you a sneak peek at the Level 2 Certification.
(Plus, industry leaders share their thoughts on the program).

 

 

Q: So what’s the program all about?
A:

Our highest rated (and most revered) program, the Level 2 Certification provides exclusive training, mentorship, and coaching practice under the guidance of the Precision Nutrition team—resulting in a more rewarding, sustainable, and profitable business for you.

By working closely with a PN Master Coach, you’ll become truly elite, capable of solving complex coaching challenges, delivering unparalleled results to every person who comes to you for help, and standing out from the pack as a genuine client whisperer.

Level 2 also positions you to truly catapult your career with ProCoach, our cutting-edge software that makes it easy to implement and scale the nutrition coaching method you’ve mastered.

What does this mean for you and your business?

Well, aside from the deep satisfaction that comes with mastering your craft, our research also suggests that the average Level 2 coach:

  • gets more clients than the average Level 1 coach,
  • retains more clients than the average Level 1 coach,
  • gets better results with those clients, and
  • reports more fun and enjoyment in their coaching practice.

Indeed, as amazing as our Level 1 certified coaches are, recent ProCoach data with over 100,000 clients shows that Level 2 certified coaches have 10 times (!) the retention vs. Level 1 coaches.

Q: Can you tell me a little more about the program?
A:

At its basic level, the Precision Nutrition Level 2 Certification Master Class is a hands-on, practice-based, mentored program that covers both the art and the science of nutrition coaching at the elite level.

It synthesizes everything we’ve learned over the past 15 years of coaching and research in the nutrition field.

That means:

  • We’ve reviewed thousands of academic and clinical studies.
  • We’ve used our system to help (and learn from) over 100,000 clients and patients.
  • We’ve trained and mentored thousands of students.
  • And we’ve collaborated with experts in a variety of fields from psychology to business strategy.

From there, we turned all this education and experience into the comprehensive year-long Level 2 Master Class curriculum.

 

 

Q: Who is the Precision Nutrition Level 2 Certification Master Class for?
A:

We’ve designed this intensive, year-long program to meet the needs of health, fitness, medical, strength, and rehab professionals working to improve the lifestyles, nutrition, and wellbeing of clients and patients.

But you don’t have to work in, or operate, a health and fitness business to benefit from the Level 2 Master Class.

Some students complete it (Level 1 first, followed by Level 2) as their next step to becoming an elite coach because they’re still in a job they hope to eventually leave so they can start working in health and fitness.

Others simply go through the training to be able to help family and friends… or anyone who turns to them for help.

Regardless of your goals, the Level 2 Master Class is designed around “learning relationships”—an instruction method proven to maximize knowledge transfer from mentor to student and help anyone, from any background, leverage their own unique strengths in this field.

Check out this short video to learn more about how the Master Class works, and who it’s for.

People come to Level 2 to develop mastery in (and derive more satisfaction from) their coaching.
They also end up getting more clients, retaining them longer, and producing better results.

 

 

Q: Why offer a certification like this?
A:

Health, fitness, and nutrition are growing rapidly; many people are looking here for interesting career options.

Unfortunately, most health, fitness, strength, and rehab professionals feel they’re missing one or more of the following in their practice:

  • A broad base of nutrition knowledge that reflects the most up-to-date research and practice in the field.
  • A broad base of applied psychology knowledge that helps them understand client/patient motivation and behavior (yes, even the “illogical” stuff!).
  • An ability to deliver and communicate all that great nutrition and psychology knowledge to actually improve people’s lives.
  • An understanding of specific populations (such as athletes or folks recovering from injury) or life stages (such as youth / aging or pregnancy) and how to tailor programs precisely for their needs.
  • The confidence and clarity that comes from having practiced foundational skills consistently, under the direction of qualified and caring mentors.
  • An understanding of how to position their coaching business within a competitive market, and how to run it effectively.

The Level 2 Master Class covers each of these, giving graduates new knowledge, skills, and confidence, which is why we developed the program. It’s for those coaches (or coaches-in-training) who want next-level professional development.

 

 

Q: Is this how you train your own coaches at Precision Nutrition?
A:

Yes, this program started out as our own in-house training program for newly hired Precision Nutrition coaches.

You see, as talented as some of our applicants were, almost none had the training or skills required to coach at the highest possible level, to the Precision Nutrition standard.

So we created an intensive, year-long coaching curriculum for our new recruits and paired them up with one of our Precision Nutrition Master Coaches to form a practice-based mentorship.

We were absolutely blown away by the results. After completing the training, already great coaches were ten times better at creating connection, navigating challenges, and helping people achieve their goals.

Q: How is the Level 2 Certification different from Level 1?
A:

The Level 1 Certification gave you a broad base of nutrition and coaching knowledge, a strong foundation on the science of nutrition and the art of coaching.

Now it’s time to refine this knowledge, tailor it to your needs, and apply it every day.

There are a few major differences between Level 1 and Level 2.

Level 2 is an intensive, highly structured, year-long program.

While Level 1 is a self-paced program, Level 2 is a highly structured, year-long program with daily lessons and regular assignments.

I won’t lie: Level 2 is serious stuff. You’re thinking, reflecting, researching, practicing, and/or interacting every single day. We push you to grow and develop, and challenge all your coaching skills.

When you graduate Level 2, you’ll really feel like you earned it. Anyone can do it, but it takes hard work and dedication.

Level 2 is practice-based and hands-on.

Level 1 is more like a university course, with textbooks, course materials, practice exercises, and exams. Level 2 is more like a graduate-level practicum or apprenticeship with mentoring.

Every day we ask you to practice a Level 2 coaching skill and figure out how to apply what you’re learning in real life.

You also work through real coaching scenarios, step by step; this is real-world problem solving and consists of on-the-ground challenges.

In essence, this isn’t a learning program. It’s a doing program.

As you already know: Clients and patients don’t get healthy by learning about nutrition and exercise. They get healthy by practicing good nutrition and exercise, consistently. (And, often, by seeking out guidance from a skilled coach).

Likewise, you don’t become an expert coach by learning about coaching. You become an expert coach by practicing excellent coaching, consistently (under the guidance of your own coach).

Level 2 goes deeper into the art and science of coaching.

It’s not just a big pile of nutrition science (though we give you plenty of that too).

Fundamentally, Level 2 helps you master the art of nutrition coaching.

(And anything else you might want to coach. The skills are nicely transferable.)

Here’s a quick comparison.

Level 1 Certification Level 2 Certification
Duration Self-paced 1 year, with daily lessons and oversight
Difficulty level Equivalent to upper-level university undergraduate program Equivalent to master’s or Ph.D. program
Ideal for People in the field of health, fitness, nutrition and rehab who want to offer nutrition coaching

People who are not (yet) in the field but who are considering (or making) a career change

Anyone with an interest in nutrition coaching generally

People in the field of health, fitness, nutrition and rehab who want to become elite professional coaches

People who are either working in the field or ready to make the jump immediately

Professionals focused on increasing client/patient retention and results

Structured curriculum Yes Yes
Coaching / mentorship No; self-directed Yes
Evaluated by Exams Completion of lessons

Completion of daily practices

Case studies

Quizzes

Course covers See here for L1 table of contents See here for full L2 syllabus
Textbook / print materials? Yes No; all online
Time commitment Self-paced About 5 hours per week

And, as mentioned above, the average Precision Nutrition Level 2 coach:

  • gets more clients than the average Level 1 coach,
  • retains more clients than the average Level 1 coach,
  • gets better results with those clients, and
  • reports more fun and enjoyment in their coaching practice.

Indeed, as amazing as our Level 1 certified coaches are, recent ProCoach data with over 100,000 clients shows that Level 2 certified coaches have 10 times (!) the retention vs. Level 1 coaches.

Q: What topics does the Level 2 Certification cover?
A:

See here for our course overview and detailed syllabus, week by week.

Like our Level 1 Certification, you can think of the Level 2 Master Class as “half nutrition, half coaching”.

Many of our students are already highly trained nutrition or health professionals (such as physicians, rehab specialists, movement coaches). Many are already working in fitness or health care, and already have professional qualifications.

Yet these highly educated professionals are still finding it very challenging (and in some cases anxiety-provoking) to develop effective intervention programs and keep clients and patients engaged, motivated, and on track.

Coaching is the missing piece that links what you know and what your clients can and will do.

So the Level 2 Certification covers things like:

  • Assessing research quality and reviewing clinical studies
  • Body composition
  • Psychoneuroimmunology / psychoneuroendocrinology and the biology of stress
  • GI structure, function, and health (including microbiome)
  • Differences by age; sex/gender; ethnicity/genetic ancestry; sociocultural and demographic variation
  • Male and female fertility / hormonal health
  • Chronic illnesses and disabilities
  • Performance / athletic nutrition
  • Disordered eating and cognitive dietary restraint
  • Appetite, hunger, and environmental cueing of eating behaviors
  • Meal planning and food prep strategies
  • Intermittent fasting
  • Supplementation and medication interactions
  • Sleep and recovery
Q: What if I already know all this stuff?
A:

Then you must run a fantastically successful nutrition coaching business!

Seriously…

The truth is that you may “know” many of the skills we teach, but don’t implement them as well or as consistently as you would like.

And that’s OK.

That’s why we practice, every day.

We only ask that you have a growth mindset. Be open to learning, challenge, experimentation, development and feedback.

Be coachable. Learn what it’s like to be in the client’s shoes.

Show up with an open mind, be receptive, and entertain the possibility that you may not be a rockstar just yet. (Or that you are a rockstar but, that rockstars still have room for improvement too).

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Q: What qualifies you to teach a course / offer a certification like this?
A:

Well, for one, I have pretty vast exposure to almost every aspect of fitness and nutrition. I’ve been:

  • A student of nutrition, going on to complete my Ph.D. in Exercise Physiology and Nutrient Biochemistry at the University of Western Ontario.
  • A teacher of nutrition at the University of Texas, Eastern Michigan University, and the University of Western Ontario.
  • A competitive physique athlete, winning the Mr. Jr. USA title in 1995.
  • A personal trainer, running a successful training business in Miami.
  • A researcher with studies published in peer-reviewed academic journals.
  • An author of over half a dozen nutrition books and hundreds of articles in magazines like Men’s Health, Women’s Health, and more.
  • A consultant to companies like Nike, Equinox and Titleist.
  • A nutrition coach to thousands of everyday people and quite a few pro athletes and Olympic gold medalists.

So apart from being qualified academically, I think I have a pretty unique perspective—one that’s very well-suited to teaching this material, especially to coaches.

I’ve seen the field of nutrition from more angles, both personally and professionally, than almost anyone else teaching nutrition today.

In addition, I’ve written chapters for other nutrition textbooks, I’ve created Masters-level university courses on sport nutrition, and I’ve created nutrition certification material for other certifying bodies.

So I have quite a bit of experience creating academic course material.

And I’m just one person. Our Precision Nutrition Level 2 Certification program was created by a team of experts, including:

  • Dr. Krista Scott-Dixon, a specialist in adult education / curriculum design and creator of our Precision Nutrition Coaching program.
  • Brian St. Pierre, RD, MSc, a specialist in performance nutrition and consultant to pro athletes.

Most of all, we’re qualified to teach this because we’ve used and tested this very system extensively with our own clients and coaches here at Precision Nutrition.

Remember: Precision Nutrition isn’t just a certification company.

Over the past 15 years, through our Precision Nutrition Coaching system, we’ve been quietly conducting the largest body transformation research project in the world.

We’ve had over 100,000 clients go through our nutrition coaching curriculum, doing what is essentially a total exercise, nutrition and lifestyle intervention.

The purpose of this coaching is simple: to help people lose fat, gain lean mass where needed, and completely transform their bodies, health, and lives.

Now, here’s the thing: Since the entire program is online, we’re able to collect data on everything. And I mean everything.

Because we don’t see clients in person, we can’t “eyeball” things. We need data. So we have detailed psychometric (personality) profiles on our clients. We track compliance and every measurable and relevant behavior. And, of course, we regularly collect photos and monitor body composition and performance outcomes.

And as a result of this rigorous data collection, I’m guessing that we know, better than almost anyone else in the world, what makes great coaches, and what helps clients change their bodies and lives.

Now, remember, I’m not talking about what we think is correlated to success. I’m talking about what we absolutely know is correlated with success. Success here meaning our clients know and understand what to do. And they do it. Consistently. They improve their body composition, health, performance, and quality of life.

Success here also means our coaches perform at a high level. It means they’re continually training themselves, developing professionally, and refining their coaching skills.

Q: Why is coaching psychology such a big deal to you guys?
A:

Quite simply: The body follows what the mind and emotions do.

Imagine a client who feels:

  • motivated
  • empowered and inspired
  • action-oriented and able to keep moving forward
  • clear on next steps
  • relaxed and confident
  • committed to and fully aligned with the goals of the program
  • flexible, creative, and problem-solving
  • open and receptive to growth and development
  • self-compassionate and self-encouraging
  • proactive and strategic
  • focused and able to prioritize
  • calm, trusting and relaxed
  • positive

Heck, imagine being a coach who feels that way!

This is what sports psychologists have sometimes called “the inner game”.

Change the mind and emotions, change the body.

Coaching psychology gives us specific tools and techniques for helping our clients change… and feel great about it.

This isn’t your Freud or lab-rat-running-mazes psychology though. It’s real-world stuff.

No matter who or what you encounter in your coaching practice, wouldn’t it be nice to feel like you have a clear plan and a system for working with it?

(And ideally, that you yourself feel calm and confident in the process?)

That’s the power of practicing coaching psychology.

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Q: Do I need to have a university degree to become certified?
A:

No. We assume no prior knowledge of biology, chemistry, psychology etc., and so we don’t require a university degree.

Now, if you struggled in school, expect this certification to be challenging.

We ask that you be willing to work on your basic skills of reading, writing, communication, self-organization, and time management.

We’ll also ask you to stretch your learning comfort zone. You’ll probably feel a bit challenged at some point in this program.

However, we offer mentorship and guidance. If you’re willing to show up and give it your best shot and work hard, then we’re here to help.

Q: What’s the time commitment?
A:

We ask that students consistently set aside about 5 hours per week for Level 2 coursework.

You won’t always use that much time, and to some degree the schedule is flexible (i.e. you don’t have to show up for class at 9am), but you definitely won’t want to rush through your daily lessons and practices.

Plus, you’ll be working through some complex case studies, doing research, studying for quizzes, and reflecting on feedback from your coach.

These things take focus, cognitive work, and mental presence.

We suggest you give them the time, energy, and attention they—and you—deserve.

And we suggest you think of this time as an investment in you and your professional development, rather than a “cost”.

Q: What results can I expect when applying what I learn in the Master Class?
A:

For more on the kinds of results you can expect, check out this video:

 

 

Q: What advice will someone be able to offer clients after completing the course?
A:

That’s a great question and one we cover in depth in the course.

Health and fitness professionals are allowed to make nutrition recommendations to otherwise healthy clients. So even without the Precision Nutrition Level 1 or Level 2 Certification, you can make nutrition recommendations.

What we’re offering is a much better system for making those recommendations.

At the same time, while Level 2 explores many topics related to health and physiology, it doesn’t give you the credentials to give nutrition advice to treat or cure disease. That’s Medical Nutrition Therapy (MNT—and you have to be a registered dietitian or medical doctor to offer it.

Q: Will you also give me business advice?
A:

This is not a business development course.

We won’t talk about specifics like which software is best for managing clients, how to resolve employee disputes, or how to do your bookkeeping.

However, we do help you explore how to tailor your professional services and business so that they match your unique coaching superpowers, values, and priorities.

We also give you access to a group of other Level 2 students who are going through the program with you. This is unprecedented access to a network of engaged, like-minded elite coaches from all over the world.

No matter how clever you are at marketing or accounting, fundamentally you have to offer a great product: your coaching services.

And of course, you’ll continue to be listed on Precision Nutrition’s Certified Professionals directory page.

Q: Am I guaranteed to make money? What’s my ROI?
A:

We guarantee that the Level 2 Master Class will be one of the best coaching experiences of your life. Which is why we offer such a generous refund policy. But there’s no guarantee that the Level 2 Certification program will make you money.

Of course, many people do make more money after graduating from the Level 2 Certification, because they put what they learn into practice, every day, over and over and over.

In fact, our research has shown that the average Precision Nutrition Level 2 coach:

  • gets more clients vs. the average Level 1 coach,
  • retains more clients vs. the average Level 1 coach,
  • gets better results with those clients, and
  • reports more satisfaction in their coaching practice.

Indeed, as amazing as our Level 1 certified coaches are, recent ProCoach data with over 100,000 clients shows that Level 2 certified coaches have 10 times (!) the retention vs. Level 1 coaches.

Commit to coaching mastery and you’ll become a better coach who attracts more clients, keeps the clients you do have, and encourages those clients to refer their friends.

Q: What are other people saying about the program?
A:

The feedback on the Level 2 Certification has been overwhelmingly positive. Here’s a sampling:

“I find that I am becoming equipped to coach clients from all different walks of life. This isn’t ‘surface’ coaching, it gets to the core of human nature, habits, and emotion. Best thing I’ve done for myself as a coach thus far.” —Michelle Mobley Simpson

“PN2 will teach you how to mobilize your personal strengths in ways that will place you among the elite in your field. The program’s coaches are fantastic resources, providing spot-on insights, valuable information, and just the right touch of supportive mentoring.” —Zoe Georgas Johnson

“This course has made me realize that there is no end to the skills and knowledge that can be acquired to make yourself better. These concepts are ones that you can read in the morning and use them in the afternoon.” —Keith Countess

“With 9 years under my belt as a coach, I expected to learn from this course, but not to the extent I have. I have had long-held beliefs challenged and had to reexamine some of my own priorities, making me a better coach and person through increased knowledge and a supportive system.” —Bronwyn Adams-Hooper

And, in case you missed the video above:

Precision Nutrition co-founder Dr. John Berardi gives you a sneak peek at the Level 2 Certification.
(Plus, industry leaders share their thoughts on the program).

 

 

Q: When does the Precision Nutrition Level 2 Certification Master Class begin?
A:

The next Precision Nutrition Level 2 Certification Program begins on Wednesday, April 8th, 2020. And there won’t be another one until October 2020.

We’re using a cohort (group) model to accept registrations: The program begins on a specific day, everyone starts at the same time, and group size is limited.

Q: How do I increase my chances of getting a spot in the next Level 2 Master Class group?
A:

To get an early bird chance at registration—because the program does usually sell out within 24 hours—please sign up for the VIP list below.

We’ll send you a special link 24 hours before the general public and that’ll increase your chances of getting a spot.

Q: What’s the special discount I’ve heard about?
A:

If you’re on the VIP list below and enroll for the program before the general registration opens, you’ll save up to 37% off the cost of the Level 2 Certification program.

The general public price is $349 USD per month for 12 months. However, if you’re on the VIP list and sign up on the presale day, you’ll get the chance to register for only $262.50 USD per month or a one-time payment of $2,625 USD – up to 37% savings.

Q: Is there a guarantee?
A:

Yes there is, and it’s simple.

This coaching program will change your business and possibly your life. If it doesn’t, it’s free.

Here’s how it works.

  • Show up and do your lessons/practices at least 75% of the time.
  • Complete at least 75% of the case studies and quizzes.
  • Finish out the full year of coaching.

At the end, if you don’t think it was hands down, the best coaching experience of your life, we’ll write you a check for every penny you spent and you’ll be on your way, no questions asked.

In short, do what we ask. Follow the program. And, when it’s done, you get to decide whether we did a good job. Simple as that.

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Q: What about recertification?
A:

Once you’ve finished the Level 2 Certification Master Class, you’re a PN’er for life. That means two things.

  • You’ll never need to re-certify for the PN Level 2 Certification.
  • You’ll never need to re-certify for the PN Level 1 Certification.
Q: I’m currently enrolled in L1 but haven’t completed it yet. Can I still sign up for L2?
A:

Yes, you can. Although, we do prefer you complete the Level 1 program before enrolling in Level 2. With that said, it’s ultimately up to you.

Q: Can I earn CEUs from my personal training organization with this program?
A:

Most likely. The curriculum is pre-qualified for CEUs with the following organizations:

  • ACE (2.0 CECs)
  • ACSM (20 CECs)
  • AFAA (1.9 CEUs)
  • CDR (20 CEPUs)
  • CPTN (14 CECs)
  • NASM (1.9 CEUs)
  • PTA Global (24 CECs)

This means that, if you are certified by any of the groups listed above, CEUs are guaranteed upon successful completion of the course.

I should also note that a host of additional organizations accept our course on a one-off basis. For these, graduates from our program submit a summary of the course and their certificate for review.

Note: We’re also in the process of qualifying for CEUs with a select number of other international organizations.

Q: How can people find out more?
A:

To learn more about the course, and to get on the Level 2 Certification VIP list, which gives you a chance to register early, 24 hours before the general public, sign up below.

Once you’re on the list, we’ll follow up with more information about the program.

Interested? Add your name to the VIP list. You’ll save up to 37% and secure your spot 24 hours before everyone else.

We’ll be opening up spots in our next Precision Nutrition Level 2 Certification Master Class on Wednesday, April 8th.

If you want to find out more, we’ve set up the following VIP list which gives you two advantages.

  • Pay less than everyone else. We like to reward people who are eager to get started and ready to gain mastery in their coaching practice. So we’re offering a discount of up to 37% off the general price when you sign up for the Master Class VIP list.
  • Sign up 24 hours before the general public and increase your chances of getting a spot. We only open the PN Master Class twice per year. Due to high demand and a very limited number of spots, we expect it to sell out fast. But when you sign up for the Master Class VIP list, we’ll give you the opportunity to register a full 24 hours before anyone else.

If you’re ready to take the next step in becoming a world-class coach, we’re ready to share our knowledge and help you master the art of coaching.

The post The Precision Nutrition Level 2 Certification Master Class: Frequently Asked Questions. appeared first on Precision Nutrition.

Detoxes, cleanses, and 30-day challenges: How to turn a quick-fix diet into transformation gold.

Detoxes, cleanses, and 30-day challenges: How to turn a quick-fix diet into transformation gold.

“Get rock hard abs in 30 days!” “Drop a dress size in three weeks!” “Detox your body with juice!” As a coach, you know these promises often fall short. So what do you do when a client wants a quick fix? In this article, we’ll show you five strategies to turn your client’s short-term diet into lasting results. 

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“A friend of mine just lost 25 pounds on a 30-day diet challenge. I’m going to try it!”

Sharon was by no means my first client to gleefully skip into a training session and announce she’d found a quick-fix solution.

I understood her excitement. After all, who wouldn’t want such fast results?

But I felt concerned for Sharon. I’ve seen lots of these “overnight” diet challenges and any changes are usually short-lived.

It’s painful to watch clients go through this predictable cycle (see below).

They often wind up right where they started, if not worse off. So as coaches, isn’t our job to put an end to 7-day detoxes, 14-day juice cleanses, and 21-day metabolism makeovers?

Maybe not.

Though every instinct might tell you to coach that “quick fix” mentality right out of your client, there’s a better way.

The best coaches can turn even the worst diet ideas into long-term success.

How? By being open, creative, and strategic.

In this article, we’ll show you five ways to transform your clients’ enthusiasm for diet and fitness “challenges” into rocket fuel for sustainable change.

Strategy #1: Celebrate their effort.

“I see a lot of people wanting to do the Whole30 or a juice cleanse or go sugar- or alcohol-free for a month,” says Jennifer Broxterman, R.D., a Precision Nutrition Certified Coach in London, Ontario.

And while these types of challenges have high failure rates, says Broxterman, don’t discourage them: “That’s a judgmental approach, and it creates a ‘me versus you’ mentality, which isn’t very good for building rapport.”

Instead, focus on the positives… even if it requires you to take a nice, deep breath first.

For example: “A challenge can be really useful if it gets your client excited about eating healthy and feeling good about the food choices in their cupboard,” says Broxterman.

It also shows they’re willing to make changes.

And with your help, clients can gain valuable insights that’ll help them achieve better results moving forward.

By supporting their efforts—instead of shutting them down—you’ll foster trust with your client and strengthen your coaching relationship. 

For a three-step process to help you reframe your coaching perspective and respect your clients’ goals, check out this PN coaching worksheet: Meet your clients where they’re at.

Strategy #2: Learn what drives them.

Your client’s challenge offers you a great opportunity: To better understand their health and fitness goals, their frustrations, and what really makes them tick, says Broxterman.

With non-judgemental curiosity, ask:

“How have diet challenges worked for you in the past?” 

This not only gives you background, it can also better set your client’s expectations (without you having to do so).

“Sometimes, they start telling you how they lost some weight, but not as much as they hoped, and that they gained it back right after,” says Broxterman.

Next, you might ask (in order):

  • “Why do you want to do this challenge?”
  • “What do you hope to get out of it?”
  • “Why is that important to you?”
  • “And why is that important to you?”

The goal is to understand your client’s pain points and true motivation.

That way, you’ll be better equipped to help them—not just during the challenge, but after it’s over, too.

What’s more, these questions might help your client discover a deeper purpose for change. One they weren’t even aware of. This can lead to much greater success, in the short-term… and the long-term.

To help your clients dig deep and find their real reasons for wanting to change, use our “5 whys” worksheet.

Strategy #3: Create a plan.

With any short-term challenge, your client is likely to make a lot of changes—all at once.

And in most cases, those changes aren’t meant to last. After all, people don’t go into a “cleanse” expecting to drink only juice for the rest of their lives.

This is where you, the coach, can really shine.

Help your client identify healthy habits that complement and intersect with the challenge they’re doing. 

That way, you can bridge the gap between the “challenge” and the rest of their life. The idea: to not only improve their likelihood of success during the challenge—but also in days, weeks, and months to follow.

Keep these habits small, simple, and behavior-focused. (Read: “Lose 10 pounds” is an outcome, not a behavior.)

Let’s say your client is committed to only eating whole foods for 30 days. A good habit to practice might be packing their lunch and afternoon snack every morning, to help ensure they stay on track.

Or perhaps they’re attempting a “no dessert” challenge. In this case, you might suggest they practice eating slowly and mindfully, and/or eat lean protein at each meal, both of which can help them feel more satisfied after eating.

And what about a 14-day juice cleanse? That’s a tougher one, to be sure. So get creative. You might suggest they:

  • Plan a social activity once or twice a week that isn’t centered around food and drink. (This is a highly underrated strategy for helping people adjust to a healthy eating lifestyle.)
  • Take 15 minutes each day to walk, foam roll, or stretch. A juice cleanse is not the time to start exercising intensely, but it can be used to establish a baseline daily movement habit.
  • Consciously recognize the feelings that come up when they’re hungry. It can even help to write them down. (Are they sad? Bored? Tired? See more ideas here.) Plus, they can learn to “sit with it,” too. Hunger is inevitable on a juice cleanse, which means it’s the perfect time to learn that “hunger is not an emergency.”

Ideally, by the end of the challenge, these habits are so ingrained it feels natural to continue them.

Bonus: If you and your client brainstorm more practices than can fit into the challenge timeframe, you have a built-in roadmap for what to work on once the challenge is over.

Use our “Outcome goals into behavior goals” worksheet to collaborate with your client on habits that will help get them closer to their targets. 

Strategy #4: Turn “failures” into feedback.

Imagine your client signs up for a Dunkin Do-Not Challenge (a.k.a. thirty days without donuts).

But just four days in, they come to you, shamefully admitting they had a Boston cream breakdown in the office breakroom.

Broxterman recommends using a three-pronged coaching approach: curiosity, compassion, and radical honesty.

Curiosity: Talk to your client about what led to their decision to eat the donut. For example, maybe they worked late the night before and skipped breakfast or didn’t prepare their lunch.

Compassion: Emphasize that they shouldn’t beat themselves up. Encourage them to treat themselves the same way they’d treat a friend or loved one in a similar situation.

Radical honesty: Give your client a chance to be completely upfront about what was going on when the “failure” happened. Maybe they were feeling:

  • a little stressed at the time
  • deprived of the foods they love
  • a bit like they “deserved” a treat

Now show them the upside: Perhaps the donut “failure” provides feedback about the importance of meal prepping lunches. That way, they don’t end up making less-than-optimal food choices.

It may also hint that completely eliminating food—especially ones they love—isn’t the best approach.

By reframing your client’s “failure” into a learning experience, you’ll prep them for future success (and minimize their guilt). 

Here’s another example: Suppose your client is trying to avoid sugar for 30 days, but they’re really struggling. Help them identify their roadblocks.

For instance, perhaps their partner keeps stocking the kitchen with cookies and ice cream. This crystallizes two frequent problems: Their environment is full of tempting foods, and their partner is showing a lack of support.

Together, brainstorm what might they do to improve their environment and/or strengthen their support system. This is how you coach them through obstacles, and keep the momentum going long after the challenge ends.

For a hands-on way to teach clients what it means to be resilient, sit down together and fill out this worksheet on “turning failure into feedback.”

Strategy #5: Explore their results

When a client completes a challenge, it’s likely they’ll have some positive outcomes. Maybe they lose a few pounds, stop craving sweets so much, or are sleeping better.

Naturally, they’ll want to maintain these results. But that rarely happens.

People tend to gravitate toward short-term diets is because it’s hard to fathom changing their eating and lifestyle habits for good. For a few weeks, though? That sounds doable

Here’s the problem: This line of thinking encourages all-or-nothing-ism. You’re either doing the most you possibly can to be healthy (an extreme diet challenge), or you’re doing nothing at all (back to your old ways).

But based on working with over 100,000 clients, we can confidently say this: The middle ground is usually where the magic happens.

Your client doesn’t have to keep all the habits they practiced during the challenge—just the ones that worked for them. 

Find out what those are, and discuss how they might continue them. Even if it’s not all the time.

For example, maybe they’ve discovered they really do feel better when they don’t drink alcohol every night but miss having drinks with their partner.

The middle ground might be limiting their alcohol intake to just one or two nights a week.

Or perhaps they love getting to the gym more frequently, but they don’t find cooking all their own meals practical.

The middle ground: They keep their gym habit, but only prepare dinner three or four days a week, which they feel confident they can do.

Here at Precision Nutrition, we call this “always something”—and use it to effectively combat all-or-nothing-ism. 

If practicing a habit at every daily meal is too much, how about at two meals? Or even one? Find out what feels doable for your client, and start there.

Instead of following through 100 percent of the time, what about 80 percent? Or 60 percent? We’ve even found that people can make real progress by being consistent just 50 percent of the time (or less).

Bottom line: Just because your client went all-in on the challenge, doesn’t mean they have to shut down entirely afterwards. Instead, show them how to “adjust the dial,” and keep benefiting from their positive actions.

Help your clients carry over their challenge changes in a way that’s sustainable, with our worksheet on “finding the middle ground.”

Leave your assumptions at the door.

The desire to embark on short-term diets, challenges, or cleanses isn’t going away anytime soon. Are they the best way to improve health and fitness? Probably not. But that won’t stop your clients from wanting to do them.

Truth is, short-term challenges aren’t useless. They don’t doom folks to failure. But most of the time, people start them with the wrong mindset—and without the right support network in place.

Meet your challenge-curious clients with compassion instead of judgement, and you might just be able to use their “summer body slim down” as a launchpad for meaningful change.

Not just for a month… but for a lifetime.

What if you could make a real difference in the lives of others—and never feel confused about nutrition again?

When it comes to better health and fitness, focusing on nutrition is the most important and effective step. But there’s a big problem: Most people don’t feel qualified to coach nutrition, especially in a way that helps clients develop highly-effective and sustainable habits.

That’s where we come in. If you’d like to learn everything you can about nutrition—especially how to use it to help yourself and others—consider the Precision Nutrition Level 1 Certification.  The next group kicks off shortly.

What’s it all about?

The Precision Nutrition Level 1 Certification is the world’s most respected nutrition education program. It gives you the knowledge, systems, and tools you need to feel confident and qualified to coach nutrition with anyone.

Developed over 15 years, and proven with over 100,000 clients, the Precision Nutrition curriculum stands alone as the authority on the science of nutrition and the art of coaching.

Whether you’re already mid-career, or just starting out, the PN Level 1 Certification is your springboard to a deeper understanding of nutrition, the authority to coach it, and the ability to turn what you know into results—for yourself and your clients.

[Of course, if you’re already a student or graduate of the Level 1 Certification, check out our Level 2 Certification Master Class. It’s an exclusive, year-long mentorship designed for elite professionals looking to master the art of coaching and be part of the top 1% of health and fitness coaches in the world.]

Interested? Add your name to the presale list. You’ll save up to 30% and secure your spot 24 hours before everyone else.

We’ll be opening up spots in our next Precision Nutrition Level 1 Certification on Wednesday, April 8th, 2020.

If you want to find out more, we’ve set up the following presale list, which gives you two advantages.

  • Pay less than everyone else. We like to reward people who are eager to boost their credentials and are ready to commit to getting the education they need. So we’re offering a discount of up to 30% off the general price when you sign up for the presale list.
  • Sign up 24 hours before the general public and increase your chances of getting a spot. We only open the certification program twice per year. Due to high demand, spots in the program are limited and have historically sold out in a matter of hours. But when you sign up for the presale list, we’ll give you the opportunity to register a full 24 hours before anyone else.

If you’re ready for a deeper understanding of nutrition, the authority to coach it, and the ability to turn what you know into results… this is your chance to see what the world’s top professional nutrition coaching system can do for you.

The post Detoxes, cleanses, and 30-day challenges: How to turn a quick-fix diet into transformation gold. appeared first on Precision Nutrition.

11 things I’ve learned coaching elite and professional athletes. Lessons from our work with NFL, NBA, UFC, & Olympic champions.

11 things I’ve learned coaching elite and professional athletes. Lessons from our work with NFL, NBA, UFC, & Olympic champions.

Precision Nutrition’s work coaching elite and professional athletes contributes to every innovation we bring to nutrition and fitness. Here are our 11 favorite learnings; ones you can use with any client, with any goal.

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At Precision Nutrition, it’s our mission to improve the lives of, and get results for, every single type of client, including our most elite ones (like NFL, NHL, NBA teams, individual pros and Olympians, top-ranked junior prospects, and more).

Interestingly, coaching elite and pro athletes has taught us a lot.

I’m not going to lie, it’s pretty cool to work with some of the most respected athletes in the world. But here’s what’s surprising: In a lot of ways, elite athletes are just like us “regular” folks.

For example: I’ve learned that certain coaching principles apply across the board, no matter who you are and what you do.

(Yep, middle-aged clients just trying to lose belly fat do have something in common with UFC legend Georges St. Pierre).

So, in this article, I’d like to share 11 of our favorite coaching lessons and stories, taken directly from our work with some of the top athletes in the world.

If you’re a health and fitness pro, these can be applied to your coaching clients, whether they’re athletes or they’re just getting started with fitness.

And, hey, if you’re just here as a sports fan—enjoy the inside scoop.

1. Shape the environment and you can get great results, even without intensive one-on-one coaching.

Coaching one-on-one is great. But sometimes it’s not possible. Like when you’re trying to improve the nutritional habits of an entire basketball team in a short period of time.

Precision Nutrition coach Brian St. Pierre has been a nutrition consultant for the San Antonio Spurs since 2014. And he’s seen the team thrive (in fact, they won the NBA championship the year he started working with them).

But when Brian started working with the Spurs, he was a bit concerned about whether he’d be able to help.

With the team’s crazy schedule, he’d have next to zero one-on-one time with each player. Would he still be able to get results?

After careful consideration, Brian realized that he could have the biggest impact by focusing his efforts, not on each individual, but on the environment they all shared.

Brian’s tactics included:

  • Start with a template. After meeting with the players and coaching staff, he developed a meal plan template — focussing on meat, seafood, cooked starch, cooked vegetables, salad, fruit, and nuts — for the chefs/caterers at the training facility, where players eat breakfast and lunch.
  • Make it tasty. He ensured that players’ favorite foods were included in the provided meals. (Brian advised the team’s coaches not to take away Tim Duncan’s beloved Cajun chicken and mashed sweet potatoes.) After all, if the players don’t like the food they’re being offered, regardless of how good it is for them, they’ll just sneak out to Chick fil A.
  • Keep it convenient. He gave the strength and conditioning interns some Super Shake recipes so they could whip up personalized shakes (specific to each player’s needs and personal preferences) and hand them out after training and practice. 
  • Make arrangements for travel. He provided healthy meal ideas for plane rides. (Sometimes coaches insisted on soda and cookies for the ride — for themselves — so Brian gave suggestions on where to hide their personal stash so the players wouldn’t be tempted.)
  • Have a plan for non-practice hours. He recommended meal delivery services as options for dinner. For married players with a spouse who cooks for them, he provided recipes and meal ideas to take home.

These kinds of tactics are pretty simple, and none of them require in-depth, involved one-on-one coaching. Nor do they require any player to engage in some heroic, individual project of personal change.

Whether it’s at a training camp, at home, or in the office, our environment has a huge influence on what we eat.

Shape the environment, and you shape the path toward change.

2. Skill in the gym (or on the field) does not equal skill in the kitchen.

Elite athletes put everything they’ve got into their physical performance. You might assume they bring the same passion for detail, refinement, and mastery to the food they eat.

Some do. But most don’t.

I first learned this in the early 2000s when I went to work with the U.S. National Bobsled team as nutrition consultant. The team asked me to kick off their training camp with a seminar.

Back then I had the notion that, as top-level athletes, these guys must give the same attention to their nutrition as they do to their sport. As a result, I built a full day of seminars on advanced nutrition topics and high-level supplement strategies.

I was all ready to go.

Then the group filed in late, holding bags of McDonalds.

I knew immediately I would have to change my presentation on the fly.

As I asked questions and listened, I realized these athletes still needed to learn the basics. They may have been advanced in their sport, but they were still, for the most part, nutrition beginners.

This is a good lesson for anyone doing nutrition coaching.

Imagine you’re coaching a middle-aged man who’s 50 lbs overweight and has never given nutrition a second thought. Then imagine a 25-year-old who’s 225 lb and 8% body fat training for the Olympics.

Yes, they might be very different physically. But they might also have the exact same nutritional skill level.

(In the Precision Nutrition Level 1 Certification we classify clients as Level 1, Level 2, or Level 3 eaters and have different recommendations for each level. In this case, both individuals would get recommendations for Level 1 eaters.)

So don’t make too many assumptions about your clients. Talk to them, test them, and find out where they’re actually at.

3. If you can’t make it better, make it less-worse.

Recently tasked with helping NBA team the Brooklyn Nets improve their nutrition, Precision Nutrition coaches Adam Feit and Brian St. Pierre worked together to create an optimal nutritional environment at the team’s practice facility.

Seriously, they’re making that dining room a work of art. Beautiful infographics demonstrating hand-size portions and Super Shake infographics; healthy, perfectly balanced menus. Great stuff.

But after training, it’s time to compete. And that’s when the team hits the road. They travel constantly.

Adam and Brian realized the biggest obstacle to maintaining the team’s nutrition was dealing with hotel food. Especially late-night room service menus offering pizza, wings, burgers, and so on.

Adam and Brian couldn’t exactly customize the menus of hundreds of hotels. But they could change the menus the players saw.

So they got ahold of the hotel menus in advance and created pared down versions of each menu — a customized version with some of the best available options.

This smaller, more selective version of the menu is what the guys would see in their rooms or get when the team sat down for dinner.

Sure, it might not be perfect, but it was still a huge improvement. And it made it easier for the players to choose a healthier option without even thinking about it.

One of our coaching mantras at Precision Nutrition is “a little bit better”. We encourage clients to abandon all-or-nothing thinking and look for ways to make even slight improvements to each meal or each workout.

Of course, you don’t have to be an NBA champion to realize that small improvements really do add up.

4. The best meal plan is worthless if your client doesn’t like the food.

A pro tennis standout contacted PN for some help with energy levels, performance, and general nutrition. Of course, we were happy to help.

Brian St. Pierre met with the athlete, discussed goals, taste preferences and other details, and then put together some guidelines including a meal plan template complete with recipe ideas.

The problem: The athlete didn’t like any of it.

Even in the pro sports world, there are self-professed picky eaters.

That’s when we realized that all of Brian’s nutritional expertise wasn’t enough. It was time to bring in the big guns. So we sent our full-time super-chef, Jen Nickle, to help.

Jen and Brian put together a taste-test session with the tennis star. They tried out all kinds of options for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and snacks. They explored food combinations, preparation options, flavors, and so on.

Turns out, the taste-test day was fun. Jen and Brian were able to build rapport with the client and demonstrate our commitment to helping her. Best of all, Chef Jen could make food her client would really enjoy—and actually eat.

(Jen now travels with this athlete to big-time events like the U.S. Open to ensure the best nutrition during competition.)

While not everyone can afford a personal chef, customizing nutritional guidance (and meal plans, if you use them) to a client’s tastes is essential.

If your client is picky, don’t try to insist that they develop a taste for quinoa or sweet potatoes; find out what they do like and work with that.

5. You have to work the way your client works.

Health and fitness coaches: Think about online coaching for a moment. How do you get started?

Chances are you compose a nice email, and you attach an assessment form, maybe a food log for them to fill out, and maybe link to an article for them to read.

What if your client doesn’t have a computer?

In 2014, Brian St. Pierre started working with the NFL’s Cleveland Browns. Some of the guys on the team didn’t own computers. And if they did, they never used email.

And why should they? Their lives are spent on the field, in the gym, in film sessions, or enjoying some precious recovery time.

Since, nowadays, people can do almost anything on their phone that they can do on on a computer, they were usually only reachable via text.

At first, Brian admits he felt resistant. He’d been coaching using email for years. Now he had to relearn a new style of communicating and coaching.

But, using his client-centered coaching skills, Brian adapted his methods to his clients. He got over his personal bias, stopped emailing, and started texting.

Interestingly, the texting experience made Brian think more critically about what he was asking clients in the first place. He became more focused, narrowing down his assessments to the bare essentials.

Most importantly, his clients got what they needed.

How to be client-centered is one of the best lessons any coach can ever learn. As coaches, we always have to remind ourselves that it doesn’t matter what works for us.

What matters is what works for our clients.

6. Perfection is not required.

Since 2009, I’ve been helping MMA star / UFC legend Georges St-Pierre with his nutrition. Before I began putting together Georges’ eating strategy, I knew two things.

One, that he had a soft spot for McDonald’s and Subway.

Two, if you tell a client they can’t have their favorite foods, they might end up ignoring you completely.

Think about it. How well could putting my foot down and bossing around a professional fighter (and Welterweight champion of the world) possibly go?

So I gave Georges some suggested meals. These included a few main meals and a few Super Shakes each day. These would cover his nutritional bases.

Beyond that, I told him he could eat whatever he wanted if he was still hungry. I even suggested eating McDonald’s or Subway every few days. Daily, if he liked.

Georges was shocked. And delighted. He couldn’t believe his nutrition coach was basically inviting him to eat at McDonald’s.

Let’s face it: With Georges’ energy expenditure, one meal a day off-script isn’t going to tank his results. It also fit his goals: gaining muscle mass to fight competitors who were getting bigger all the time.

Of course, Georges is not your typical client, and this was not your typical eating strategy. But there is an important lesson here.

Perfection isn’t required for elite athletes—or for “regular” people.

For most people, aiming to get 80% of your meals on-point is an effective goal.

7. What works for one person won’t necessarily work for another.

Dietary trends tend to go in cycles. Ketogenic diets are among them, resurfacing now and then to grab media headlines. These can get the attention of top athletes who are looking for an edge—with varying results.

Here’s an example. For a while, there was a trainer who made a big splash putting NFL linemen on a strict ketogenic diet paired with high doses of certain supplements. Players/clients would come to his “camp” for about four weeks to learn how to eat this way.

One of these players was an offensive lineman for the Atlanta Falcons.

He heard about other NFL guys getting great results on the program, so he decided to give it a try himself. Within those four weeks, he saw immediate improvement: He got bigger, faster, stronger, leaner—all the things a lineman would want to see.

By the end of the four weeks, though, he started to feel a lot less awesome.

He was experiencing some major symptoms: everything from glucose control issues to hypoglycemia to brain fog to vertigo to anxiety and depressive moods. He even confessed to having suicidal thoughts.

But he had been so impressed by the initial results of the diet, he wanted to keep trying. He tried tinkering with it, cycling his keto days, but nothing worked.

So he called us.

We reintroduced carbs into his diet, recommending he eat 2-3 cupped handfuls of carbs at each meal (five times a day). At the same time, we decreased his fat intake a bit, which helped counter-balance the increase in carbs, calorie-wise.

Within 2-3 weeks, his blood glucose evened out, his anxiety went away, and his performance improved. Plus, the body composition changes he liked about the keto diet stayed the same: He maintained his leanness and his mass.

We found that he needs to be really consistent with his carbs in order to perform and feel his best.

That’s the thing about diets, protocols, and specific methods. Just because it works for one client doesn’t mean it’s going to work for another—even if they share the same goals, athletic ability and body type.

Plus, just because a particular approach can “work” (according to very specific metrics like body weight, for some period of time) doesn’t mean it’s going to work for every goal, indefinitely.

Individual needs should come before trends every time.

And outcome-based decision making should trump “this worked for some other guy” or “this should theoretically work for me”.

8. Bring important influencers (like family members) into the process.

For several years I provided nutrition consultation to Junior A hockey players.

(Here in Canada, Junior A is essentially one level below the NHL. These are the guys already drafted, or looking to get drafted, and become the next great NHL stars.)

While these players are already amazing athletes, they’re also young, usually teenagers. They still live with families, either their own or those they are staying with while playing for a team outside their home town.

When working with these future NHLers, I did some basic education, giving seminars and offering kitchen demos showing how to prepare basic healthy foods.

But I knew that wasn’t enough.

It didn’t matter much what I told the athletes. Because they weren’t the ones making the meals, or doing the shopping, or buying the food.

I had to get the family involved. So I would find out who prepared the meals at the homes where they were staying, then concentrate my efforts on them.

I gave them everything they needed, including:

  • Education about the needs of a young teenage hockey player
  • Cooking demos
  • Recipes and meal ideas
  • Grocery shopping guides
  • And more.

The more I could equip the family to cook well, the better the nutritional results would be for the athlete.

This relates to all kinds of clients, of all ages. Clients often tell us their biggest obstacle to eating better is other people: colleagues, friends, and most of all, family members such as spouses and kids.

Change doesn’t happen in a vacuum. Acknowledge the other influences in your clients’ lives. Help them work with loved ones and address any roadblocks together.

9. Intense training and strict eating will mess with your body. (But that’s OK for a little while.)

Precision Nutrition offers an elite athlete testing and coaching program which includes a battery of research-based physiological tests and assessments. These are designed to help athletes optimize their nutrition.

The tests include genetic, blood chemistry, food sensitivity, and microbiome analyses. To gather these data, we send a nurse to the athlete’s house or training facility, collect samples, and analyze them.

Then an interdisciplinary team (including our sports nutrition experts, our molecular genetics experts, and our physician) review and interpret the results.

We give the athletes a really comprehensive report of the findings. And then we use the findings to personally coach the athletes for the next six months.

A few months back, we tested a dozen track and field stars — some of whom just competed at the Rio Olympic Games — from the world-renowned Altis facility in Phoenix, Arizona.

In their lead-up to the games, we found something interesting.

Every one of the athletes had suboptimal sex hormone (testosterone, estrogen) levels and white blood cell counts. We discovered a host of other, more individual, things too. But this one was most interesting for two reasons.

First, it applied to both men and women.

Second, a few years back, when doing a pre-season training camp with NFL athletes at Nike HQ, we discovered some of the same things.

Of course, the results aren’t completely surprising. High intensity training has predictable consequences. It’s hard to get adequate calories, sleep, and stress management when you’re in an intense training block.

People who are training for the Olympics or for an NFL season are OK to make that trade-off. They know it’s temporary. And for most people, this kind of physical disruption isn’t dangerous if it’s for a short time.

However, it can become dangerous if you keep going at that level.

Most elite athletes take breaks after a training season, which provides a chance to rest, recover, and normalize. Its no surprise that many NHL athletes spend most of their off-season doing little more than lifting a fishing rod.

But many “regular” exercisers don’t respect the seasonality of sport. Which means, ironically, many of them are as much at risk of damaging their bodies through undereating and under recovery as Olympians.

So keep the long game in mind.

If a client is overtraining, bring the risks to their attention. If they’re making a sacrifice for an important goal, be clear about the tradeoffs.

And always be asking: What’s the goal? How do we get you there as safely as possible? When’s it time to back off and rest?

10. Just because a food is “healthy” doesn’t mean it’s good for everyone.

One client from our elite athlete program is Mikel Thomas, a hurdler from Trinidad and Tobago. Mikel was preparing for the Rio Olympics but was having some issues with recovery.

We conducted our usual battery of tests. In reviewing the data, we noticed he had a high iron saturation, and his UIBC (Unsaturated Iron Binding Capacity) was low. Both factors pointed to an excessive iron intake.

Pretty unusual for a vegetarian.

We also did a food sensitivities test, and noticed an intolerance to chickpeas.

(Note: While food sensitivities tests aren’t 100% reliable on their own, when used in the context of a full spectrum of tests and assessments, they can help give us extra clues about what’s going on.)

When we looked at Mikel’s food log we noticed that most of his meals were based around chickpeas. Giving thought to the data as a whole, we hypothesized that this dietary staple (typical for someone from Trinidad and Tobago, especially for a vegetarian) was actually causing a negative reaction in his body.

Fortunately, when we had Mikel replace chickpeas with alternative protein and carbohydrate sources such as quinoa, his recovery got better.

The moral of this story is not that chickpeas are bad. They offer carbohydrates, some protein, and various vitamins and minerals. They are a nutritious food.

But just because a food is considered “healthy”—or even a “superfood”—doesn’t mean it’s optimal for your client. Especially if it’s over-consumed.

11. Physiological markers don’t tell the whole story.

In 2011 and 2012, as mentioned above, I participated in Nike’s NFL Football Training Camp Pro. This camp brings together 10-15 high-level NFL athletes for a week-long camp of testing, training, eating, and learning experience on Nike’s campus.

The camp included athletes like Ndamukong Suh, Kam Chancellor, Patrick Chung, Jonathan Stewart, Steven Jackson, Greg Jennings, and more. And, at the camp, I delivered nutritional seminars and education to the athletes. I also ran some physiological testing for them.

Interestingly, I tested better than all the guys there on a host of standard markers of health such as sex hormone levels (testosterone, DHEA, etc), vitamin D levels, Omega 3 levels, and more.

Yep, when it came to these health markers, I dominated the NFL stars.

But you know what I wasn’t better at?

Playing football.

This was a great reminder that while physiological markers can be useful, they don’t give us the whole picture. And that putting too much focus on any particular non-sport performance indicator can lead you down a dangerous path.

At Precision Nutrition, we’re proud to be data-driven. We like numbers and tests and metrics of all kinds. But we also know it’s not the complete picture.

You have to look at the whole person to a real sense of what’s going on.

What to do next:
Some tips from Precision Nutrition

1. Don’t make assumptions.

Appearances can be deceiving. Just because someone is a star in their sport or looks the part doesn’t mean they have advanced nutrition skills.

Instead of making assumptions or guesses about where your client is at, ask questions. Listen. Observe.

Seek to understand rather than to prove yourself right.

2. Remember that in many ways, we’re all the same.

Elite athletes—they’re just like us!

Our lives may be very different but, in the end, we’re all human. We all want to enjoy our food and have some fun. We all have our favorite indulgences and the foods that make us curl up our lips in disgust.

Whether you’re working with celebrities, top athletes, busy executives or just neighborhood folks in your local gym, remember that at the end of the day, you’re coaching people.

3. Remember that in other ways, we’re all completely different.

What works for one client might not work for another. No matter how “super” the food or how “killer” the diet, there is no one-size-fits-all.

And what works for you might not work for your clients, either.

You may have spent years perfecting your intake forms, for example, but what happens when a client doesn’t have a computer? Or is constantly on the go and never has time to look at it?

Your job as a coach is to focus on understanding and supporting the needs of each client. This takes work and practice and, believe me, it is humbling sometimes.

But that’s what it takes to be a client-centered coach.

4. Screw perfection. Help your clients get a tiny bit better.

An all-or-nothing mentality won’t help your clients get anywhere, even if they’re top athletes who are used to aiming for perfection.

Looking for small ways to improve is the best way to keep moving consistently toward change.

That might mean letting a client keep her weekly supersweet Frappucino monstrosity. Or helping her choose the best option on a hotel menu. Or packing her own snacks for the plane.

You don’t need to get rid of everything a client is doing and every indulgence they have. Nor should you.

Find ways of helping them move forward, one tiny little bit at a time.

5. Seek out and celebrate your clients’ superpowers.

Whether they’re a gold medalist or they’ve never set foot in a gym, every single client possesses their own special superpowers.

One of your jobs as a coach is to help them figure out what they’re already good at and put those abilities to use.

Maybe they’re a data junkie and they can use their spreadsheet nerdiness to track their food like a pro. Or maybe they appreciate nature and will enjoy discovering local farms and farmers markets.

Maybe they lack information at the moment but have a great ability to learn. Maybe they routinely fall off the wagon—but they always, always get back on.

Help your clients recognize their own superpowers, and then put them to use.

Celebrate the good stuff. Call out progress every chance you get.

They might never be an NFL star, but you can be their cheerleader.

You can help them become their own superstar.

Want strategies to level up your coaching?

It’s no secret that master coaches develop over time, through education and consistent practice, usually under the guidance of a mentor or coach.

Precision Nutrition is the only company in the world that both works with thousands of our own nutrition coaching clients and teaches health, fitness, and wellness professionals our real-world methods for getting results.

And here’s some great news: Our next Precision Nutrition Level 2 Certification Master Class kicks off on Wednesday, April 8th, 2020.

Want to achieve total confidence in your coaching skills? Get (and keep) more clients? Grow and strengthen your practice? If so, the Precision Nutrition Level 2 Certification is definitely for you.

It’s designed specifically for Level 1 students and grads who realize that knowing about the science of nutrition isn’t enough.

Part master class, part grad program, part mentorship, it’s the only course in the world designed to help you master the art of coaching, meaning better results for your clients and a better practice for you.

Since we only take a limited number of professionals, and since the program sells out every time, I strongly recommend you add your name to our VIP List below. When you do, you get the chance to sign up 24 hours before everyone else. Even better, you get a huge discount off the general price of the program.

[Note: The Level 2 Master Class is only for students and grads of our Level 1 Certification. So if you haven’t yet enrolled in that program, please begin there.]

Interested? Add your name to the VIP list. You’ll save up to 37% and secure your spot 24 hours before everyone else.

We’ll be opening up spots in our next Precision Nutrition Level 2 Certification Master Class on Wednesday, April 8th.

If you want to find out more, we’ve set up the following VIP list which gives you two advantages.

  • Pay less than everyone else. We like to reward people who are eager to get started and ready to gain mastery in their coaching practice. So we’re offering a discount of up to 37% off the general price when you sign up for the Master Class VIP list.
  • Sign up 24 hours before the general public and increase your chances of getting a spot. We only open the PN Master Class twice per year. Due to high demand and a very limited number of spots, we expect it to sell out fast. But when you sign up for the Master Class VIP list, we’ll give you the opportunity to register a full 24 hours before anyone else.

If you’re ready to take the next step in becoming a world-class coach, we’re ready to share our knowledge and help you master the art of coaching.

The post 11 things I’ve learned coaching elite and professional athletes. Lessons from our work with NFL, NBA, UFC, & Olympic champions. appeared first on Precision Nutrition.

10 things every successful fitness and nutrition coach does. The best coaches do them every day. How many are you doing?

10 things every successful fitness and nutrition coach does. The best coaches do them every day. How many are you doing?

What makes for a successful fitness and nutrition coach? It’s not just what you know… it’s what you do (every day). Here are some of the practices elite coaches use to get results. Keep track of how many you’ve mastered.

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You know the type. It’s the coach that seems to have to it all together.

They have a long waiting list of eager prospects. Their client results are always impressive. They make great money doing what they love. And, just to make us all a little more jealous, they make it look effortless.

Welcome to the elite coach.

What is it that makes elite coaches so special?

Is it their training? Their hard work and commitment? Their passion? Or do they know something most others don’t?

The answer to all of those question is… yes.

Elite coaches do know something most don’t. But it’s not just knowledge. It’s a set of practices they work on daily.

And this set of practices helps them get better at forming strong relationships with their clients, fostering change, and improving their craft.

Here are the active habits that set elite coaches apart from the rest.

1. Elite coaches practice the art of human connection.

Better coaches aren’t just better at customizing workout and nutrition plans. They’re better with people.

Elite coaches don’t limit conversations to “here’s what you have to do”; they speak to clients in a way that nurtures real human connection.

By asking sincere questions, expressing compassion and being a steady source of support, they help guide their clients around obstacles so they can achieve their goals.

To practice this approach:

Ask leading questions that help clients open up and explore, imagine, or build on past successes. For example:

  • If things were better with your eating/exercise, what would be different in your life? What would you do more of? Less of? Be proud of?
  • Imagine that you have the body and health you want. What did it take for you to achieve it? What did you have to give up?
  • What have you had success with in the past? How can we do more of that and apply it to your health and fitness?”

And once you ask, really listen to their responses. Let them sink in. Learn from them. (For more on this approach, check out: Effective coach talk: What to say to clients and why it matters).

2. Elite coaches ask ‘why’. (Again… and again… and again.)

You’ve probably seen it a million times.

New clients get a taste for how hard it is to change their eating habits, do the extra 10 squats, run another mile, and rearrange their lives for all of it… and suddenly they don’t want it so badly, after all.

Elite coaches have a way of inspiring their clients—in every single session—to want the hard work. They know how to unlock their clients’ deeper motivation, sense of purpose, and inner fire.

How do they do this? For one thing, they know how to ask their clients why.

To practice this approach:

Use the ‘Five Whys’ technique.  Here’s how it works:

When establishing goals with your clients, you ask them why.

Q: “Why do you want to accomplish this?”
A: “Because I want to lose weight.”

Then, whatever answer they come up with, you ask why again.

Q: “And why do you want to lose weight in the first place?”
A: “Because I used to be thinner and am embarrassed by how heavy I’ve gotten.”

Continue asking why for a total of five times. It’s surprisingly challenging—and amazingly effective at getting to people’s core motivations.

(By the way, elite coaches use ‘the Five Whys’ on themselves. Because they know that getting to the heart of their own motivation is the best place to begin.)

3. Elite coaches help the “competition.”

Want to know a secret? To an elite coach, there’s no such thing as competition.

Elite coaches don’t feel insecure about what other coaches are doing because they know how to use their individuality as an advantage in their careers.

Rather than hiding and hoarding their knowledge, elite coaches share that knowledge and facilitate conversations, and in doing so build a trusted tribe around them.

Find your tribe and help make those in your tribe successful, and you’ll be more likely to succeed, too.

To practice this approach:

Get engaged with other people’s content and social feeds.

Take the extra few minutes to leave iTunes reviews on their podcasts; review their books on Amazon; share their Facebook posts; and so on.

These simple actions will help them build their expertise and broaden their reach. As a bonus, you might expand your own social networks in the process.

To take this concept up a notch, consider starting a Facebook group or other social community to serve as a source of mutual support, discussion, and inspiration. You’ll be able to answer questions and help your peers—and position yourself as an expert, too.

4. Elite coaches do less.

“Doing it all” is a myth.

Spreading yourself too thin is a first-class ticket to disappointment and failure. Instead, top-notch coaches figure out what’s truly crucial among their particular market and clientele, and do that.

Elite coaches also know their clients can’t do it all. They know that giving clients just one small habit at a time is far more effective than throwing an ambitious project at them and hoping for the best.

To practice this approach:

Give the ‘one habit method’ a try.

Of all the things your client wants to do and achieve, work with them to figure out which goal is most important to them right now. Then, based on their goal, help choose just one habit to start practicing today.

The habit should be so simple it almost feels “too easy” and it should be something they can do in just five or ten minutes, every single day.

Have your client practice that one habit every day for a minimum of two weeks. Ask them to check back in with you regularly to let you know whether or not they’ve completed the task.

(If you’ve completed any kind of PN coaching, you’ll recognize this ‘one-habit’ method. There’s a reason we recommend it: it’s integral to our coaching method, because it works.)

5. Elite coaches practice the basics.

Bruce Lee said: “I fear not the man who has practiced 10,000 kicks once, but I fear the man who has practiced one kick 10,000 times.”

Kick Guy never needed to have the perfect kick. All he had to do was focus on mastering the process and being excellent with all of the pieces. And that was enough to scare Bruce Lee. (Pretty scary.)

Elite coaches are like Kick Guy. They’re willing to practice techniques—even the basic ones—again and again so they can move towards true mastery.

They take this approach to their clients, too, helping them put their own foundation in place and acquire the skills they need to succeed in sustainable change.

To practice this approach:

Go back to basics with something you enjoy doing and consider yourself ‘pretty good’ at. Think back to the very first skills you learned to do that thing.

If you’re a boxer, for example, consider your stance, your hip movement, or your jab. Could you benefit from drills focusing on your core techniques?

Or, if you once struggled with poor eating habits, pay attention at mealtime. Do you still eat as slowly and mindfully as you once did? Would you benefit from paying more attention to how full you feel at the end of each meal?

Pick one elemental thing you could take from ‘good’ to ‘great’ or ‘great’ to ‘positively killer.’ Then work on improving that one thing. Solicit help from a colleague or peer if you like.

It may feel weird to act like a beginner again, but by doing so, you’re on your way to mastery.

6. Elite coaches listen for what they don’t want to hear.

Many coaches (quite logically) focus on trying to strengthen their clients’ motivation—the side of them that is interested in change.

But in the early stages of client development, it doesn’t work. Because that other side—the part that is scared of change and resistant to your efforts—is ridiculously strong. After all, it’s been preventing your client from changing for a long time.

In order to get your clients moving in the right direction, coaches have to do something that might sound a bit paradoxical: they have to hear out the resistance first.

Elite coaches listen for the resistance. They seek it out. Because they know they have to work with it, rather than against it.

To practice this approach:

Listen for your own resistance.

Think of something you’ve been wanting to change, but haven’t gotten around to yet. Tip: think of all the things you’ve been telling yourself you should or shouldn’t do.

Write down the thing you want to change. Then ask yourself:

  • What is GOOD for me about NOT changing? (In other words, how does NOT changing benefit me or help me solve a problem?)
  • What would be BAD about changing? What might I have to give up or lose?

Write down your answers.

How do you feel? Your resistance might feel a little calmer or quieter; you might feel a little more ready for change. Now that you understand your own resistance a little better, you can listen for it in client conversations, too.

7. Elite coaches know when to shut up.

Elite coaches have a lot of expertise, but that doesn’t mean they always vocalize it.

Think about it: When someone asks, “What should I eat after exercising?” an expert answers the question: “You should eat protein and carbs.”

But when a client asks “What should I eat after exercise?” a coach asks, “Tell me about your training program and what you feel you can manage?” Coaches even consider “What do you like to eat after exercise?”

A good coach doesn’t mind being quiet, asking questions or fading into the background a bit.

Many fitness professionals try to be both expert and coach at the same time. But that never works. You can’t talk and listen at the same time. You have to know how and when to switch back and forth between the two.

In other words: you need to know when to stop talking and listen.

To practice this approach:

Try using this ‘expert vs coach’ checklist on yourself:

With your clients, do you spend most of your time…

Expert Coach
Talking and telling… or Listening and reflecting?
Telling them what you know… or Sharing what you’re working on?
Answering questions?… or Asking questions?
Letting the client set the tone?… or Leading the client towards a decision or action?
Pointing and directing?… or Guiding and accompanying?
Taking the spotlight… or Fading into the background?

If you find yourself more on the ‘expert’ side of things, try actively practicing some of the actions on the ‘coach’ side.

8. Elite coaches practice being imperfect.

Lots of health and fitness professionals have high standards; most of us want to walk the walk. Moreover, we want to look like we walk the walk.

So we try to refine our own health habits, working practices, and self-presentation. We know that our bodies are often advertisements for our services, so we worry about looking our best.

But too often, we try to be perfect. And that becomes our downfall.

Sure, on the one hand, a little fire keeps you energized and sharp. But too much pressure is a parking brake on performance.

(Ever choked during a game or competition? You were probably overwhelmed by pressure. It happens to athletes all the time.)

So while elite coaches strive for excellence, they don’t try to be perfect—and they don’t expect their clients to be perfect, either.

To practice this approach:

Try sharing a little of your own imperfect experience with your clients.

When they’re fumbling with something, tell them about a time you felt awkward, embarrassed or uncomfortable yourself, either when working on your own fitness and nutrition journey or another time you were struggling to learn something new.

When they’re feeling like a failure, let them know everyone falls down sometimes: share one of your own mistakes—and maybe even how you fixed it.

9. Elite coaches keep it real.

If you work in the fitness and health industry, it’s easy to throw around a lot of ideas.

Stuff like this:

  • “Never eat processed food.”
  • “Always eat local, seasonal, organic food.”

On the surface, it’s hard to argue against either. But really? Unless you’re living in a yurt somewhere and growing all your own food from the ground up, I doubt you’re always eating whole, unprocessed, local, seasonal, organic food.

Which means those nutrition ideals aren’t aspirational—they’re impossible. Even for the world’s top experts.

Elite coaches are willing to do a reality check. They realize that people don’t need a nutritional deity to follow. They don’t need strict codes of conduct that includes words like “should”, “always”, and “never”.

Instead of coaching from a place of fantasy, elite coaches stay grounded. They help their clients make progress, bit by bit.

To practice this approach:

Examine the rules you’ve set.

Consider all the “rules” and expectations around fitness, nutrition, and health. Write down as many as you can think of. Be sure to include words like “should”, “always”, and “never”.

  • You should always…
  • You should never…
  • Being “fit” means you always…
  • Being “healthy” means you never…
  • Eating “nutritiously” means…

Now read your answers and think about whether a client could reasonably “always” or “never” do them.

10.  Elite coaches ask for help.

If you’re coaching other people, it only makes sense that you’ve experienced coaching yourself.

After all, if you’ve never been coached through something, you can’t possibly understand what your clients are experiencing, thinking, and feeling.

Elite coaches know this. They seek out mentorship and get coaching themselves. Sometimes it’s not even fitness related. It might be for their business, or their personal life (like how to be a better parent or partner), or a hobby they’re particularly passionate about.

The important thing is that that they are willing to ask for help, to make themselves vulnerable, to go through the process of change… just like their clients.

And they know how powerful that process of change can be.

To practice this approach:

Make your coaching checklist.

What areas of expertise do you seek?

  • Nutritional science?
  • Coaching psychology?
  • Business strategy?
  • Professional development?
  • General life wisdom?

What kind of a mentor or coach would you like?

  • What kind of a person are they?
  • What sort of reputation do they have?
  • What would you want them to show you or tell you in order for you to feel they were the “right fit.”

Now think about people in your life (whether paid professionals, colleagues or friends) who may fit your criteria. If someone springs to mind, great. Ask if they’d be willing to lend their expertise and support to the thing you’d like help with.

Or if you need to do more research, that’s cool too.

What to do next

Pick one of the practices.

Give some thought to which of these practices you’d like to try out for yourself.

Whichever you select, do you have the skills to incorporate them into your coaching style right now? If not, check out the PN approach to skill development for some inspiration to help you figure out your next steps.

Be an observer.

As you’re coaching, be aware of your style. Are you speaking and giving advice when you could be asking questions? Are you actually hearing what your client has to say, or rushing to find the answer?

Don’t judge yourself too harshly—just start building awareness, for now. That way you can start to get clear on what you’d like to improve upon.

Ask for help if you need it.

Moving from being ‘a good coach’ to being ‘an elite coach’ takes a lot of work, and it can’t be done alone. Look for people you can learn from. Maybe it’s a community member, an old mentor, or an experienced friend.

Want strategies to level up your coaching?

It’s no secret that master coaches develop over time, through education and consistent practice, usually under the guidance of a mentor or coach.

Precision Nutrition is the only company in the world that both works with thousands of our own nutrition coaching clients and teaches health, fitness, and wellness professionals our real-world methods for getting results.

And here’s some great news: Our next Precision Nutrition Level 2 Certification Master Class kicks off on Wednesday, October 2nd, 2019.

Want to achieve total confidence in your coaching skills? Get (and keep) more clients? Grow and strengthen your practice? If so, the Precision Nutrition Level 2 Certification is definitely for you.

It’s designed specifically for Level 1 students and grads who realize that knowing about the science of nutrition isn’t enough.

Part master class, part grad program, part mentorship, it’s the only course in the world designed to help you master the art of coaching, meaning better results for your clients and a better practice for you.

Since we only take a limited number of professionals, and since the program sells out every time, I strongly recommend you add your name to our VIP List below. When you do, you get the chance to sign up 24 hours before everyone else. Even better, you get a huge discount off the general price of the program.

[Note: The Level 2 Master Class is only for students and grads of our Level 1 Certification. So if you haven’t yet enrolled in that program, please begin there.]

Interested? Add your name to the VIP list. You’ll save up to 37% and secure your spot 24 hours before everyone else.

We’ll be opening up spots in our next Precision Nutrition Level 2 Certification Master Class on Wednesday, October 2nd.

If you want to find out more, we’ve set up the following VIP list which gives you two advantages.

  • Pay less than everyone else. We like to reward people who are eager to get started and ready to gain mastery in their coaching practice. So we’re offering a discount of up to 37% off the general price when you sign up for the Master Class VIP list.
  • Sign up 24 hours before the general public and increase your chances of getting a spot. We only open the PN Master Class twice per year. Due to high demand and a very limited number of spots, we expect it to sell out fast. But when you sign up for the Master Class VIP list, we’ll give you the opportunity to register a full 24 hours before anyone else.

If you’re ready to take the next step in becoming a world-class coach, we’re ready to share our knowledge and help you master the art of coaching.

The post 10 things every successful fitness and nutrition coach does. The best coaches do them every day. How many are you doing? appeared first on Precision Nutrition.