Nutrition Spotlight - Jessica Mao-Heaton

Learn more about how Jessica has taken small steps to establish big habits that have impacted her outlook on nutrition & daily life!
DeNovo CrossFit
July 9, 2023
Nutrition Spotlight - Jessica Mao-Heaton

What prompted you to start nutrition coaching with DeNovo Nutrition?

Desire to have support in improving sleep and developing/maintaining healthy habits with intention. To ditch anxiety, guilt/shame about everything I do (so improving mental health).

What are 3-4 things that you GAINED throughout this experience?

It really helped my motivation in making committed club January-March! And when things got tough in April with life/illness, there were still some habits that remained and kept me going. I'm more mindful of my sleep now and able to get it back on track. I am more mindful of screentime and more easily put my phone away before bed now. I've gained calm moments in my morning because I've learned to make space for that, no matter how it looks. I've learned to better identify what I need, meet those needs, and better advocate for myself because this program has taught me to prioritize myself. I've developed a better relationship with vegetables, haha. And my house is cleaner/getting more organized! Gained more a growth mindset.

What are 2-3 things that you LOST?

My mornings are less chaotic. I have less anxiety and shame feelings in my life. I ditched my previously messy living room/play area. I've lost the uncertainty around how to prioritize and improve my sleep. I've ditched the fixed mindset/perfectionism!!

What is the biggest thing that you have learned since starting nutrition coaching?

I think really being able to adopt a growth mindset is the biggest takeaway so far because the one step at a time and intentional focus away from perfection has really helped me. I always knew I wanted a growth mindset but never had the right tools or support to get there until now. I've really learned to appreciate the littler wins which honestly become big wins when focusing on the process vs. a certain outcome.

What were you struggling with before you signed up for our nutrition program?

Not sleeping enough, chaotic mornings, feeling like I wasn't taking great care of myself, mindlessly scrolling through my phone way too much and the day would just pass me by.

How did our nutrition program help solve that problem?

It added mindfulness to just about everything! Even though some days still feel crazy, I think I feel a lot calmer and more confident than I did 4 months ago. I'm able to not berate myself for not doing something and am learning that a system needs to work for me, not just me work for it. I love that Jenny will really push me to reflect and evaluate how things are going. She really listens to me and encourages me to be okay with saying when things aren't working for me and then adjusting.

What was different about our nutrition program compared to diets you've tried in the past?

There has almost been zero focus on diet for me actually because that's not as big of a priority right now as so many other pillars in my life. I love that this has been holistic in taking care of my LIFE nutrition, not just food. You can really make the program what you want. I personally have struggled with eating disorders in the past and disordered eating from so many years of dieting, so I no longer focus on weight loss at all. Jenny knows this and helps me focus on the other pillars of health I truly want to focus on. Even if you are here to focus on food nutrition, I appreciate that things aren't all or nothing in this program and that it's about making changes that are sustainable and enjoyable to you! Eating healthy is nice, but it's not a MORAL obligation we have to thrust upon ourselves as some food-shamers might lead us to believe. So I appreciate how this program looks at little tweaks and accessible positive changes we can make that feel good both inside and out.

Tell us about the moment when you realized our nutrition program was actually working to solve your problem?

It was pretty much in the first week when Jenny had me try out putting my phone in the bathroom at night. It was freeing to do that! Like I was already taking control of my life back. It felt so impossible at first, haha, but she made me believe it could be done.

Tell us what life looks like now that your problem is solved or is being solved?

Sleep is still an ongoing struggle depending on life circumstances, but in the past few days I've gotten in back on track. I think I've gained so much confidence in getting things back on track because of my work with Jenny. I don't sweat the bad days quite as much anymore. I let myself feel them feelings and then I'm able to bounce back quicker without dwelling on the past as much. As annoyed as I get when my sleep suffers again, I know I can get it back on track as my capacity to increases again. It's like I've built my own sort of resiliency!

How has the accountability and support of nutrition coaching helped you stay on track?

It's kind of a forced weekly/monthly evaluation of my life haha. I think it's been great to each month look at what's going well, what's not, and what can now be added. I don't think I would do that for myself, so the external support to do so is sooo nice!

What would you say to someone considering nutrition coaching with DeNovo Nutrition?

Even if you don't know what your goals are, your coach will help you find them by getting to your why and to what feelings you are wanting to address and improve. It doesn't need to be just about food nutrition. If that feels overwhelming, your coach will meet you where you are at and help you achieve goals you'd never think would be achieved through nutrition coaching (like tidying/organizing, haha). It's because your life is so much more than just food and exercise. YOU get to be the captain of this ship and direct it where you want to go. Your coach just helps you get there like a map :)

What is your next nutrition and health related goal?

When I feel more capacity to, I want to work on improving my blood sugars since prediabetes runs in my family and I have it now. My relationship with food still needs further solidifying before I can take that on without shame-feelings.

Is there anything else we can help you with or that you'd like to share?

No, I feel like a ton of work is being done and I'm enjoying it! Thanks for being there for me in both the good and tough times.

Continue Reading

pushpress gym management software for boutique gyms and fitness studios