Kate is a Registered Dietitian/Nutritionist (RD/RDN), Certified LEAP Therapist (CLT), Personal Trainer (CPT), yoga teacher, and dreamer.
Part introvert bookworm, part out door enthusiast.
Trying to make the daily grind more fun!
The short version (for you busy people!): I decided to major in dietetics to help overcome my own poor relationship with food that was leading to disordered eating. Becoming a yoga teacher was next because I wanted to not only find a better life harmony but also to see if I could heal chronic back probelms I had. I became a Personal Trainer because yoga had helped with the life harmony, but not the back pain – the Personal Training and Corrective Exercise knowledge did that! And I studied LEAP Therapy as my first step in studying gut health when my husband began to suffer from various digestive troubles and autoimmune diseases; we watched first-hand the toll this took on his physical, mental, and emotional health over the years. I am always eager to learn more to help find health, and share it with others. I am now in a year-long training program for Integrative and Functional Medical Nutrition Therapy, diving deep into the inner mysteries of how every moment of your life may have lead up to the current state you find yourself in.
The long version (go ahead, get a cup of coffee or tea first… but put that soda down and back away…): A fan of jogging in the park, playing soccer and ultimate Frisbee (and eating!) I began having chronic back pain in 2012 that took me away from the few forms of “exercise” I really enjoyed. This lead to weight gain not only from the more sedentary lifestyle I had to adopt, but also because I spiraled into some depression, and returned to old disordered eating patterns as I grieved over the loss of my body’s abilities. I grew frustrated that everything from sitting, standing, sleeping, and even trying to just sit down on the toilet would send stiffening pains through my back and hips. I couldn’t sit still for more than 15 minutes on non-cushioned surfaces, and even soft chairs would lead to discomfort and fidgeting within the hour. I eventually just started popping pain pills, and tried to “push through the pain.” I took up yoga, judo, and p90x. People would comment when hearing about my efforts, confused why the fat loss wasn’t happening. For a long time, I didn’t get it either. Then I began getting metabolic tests done – it turned out that I needed more calories that I was consuming. My body needed 1800 calories simply to function, but using basic estimation calculations, I was eating closer to 1500 per day. This would lead to chronic under-eating, but just mildly! Yet every few weeks, it was as though my body would rebel at the limited fuel, and demand I eat! And I’d over eat. Once I increased my protein to bump up my calories, weight loss began! This was my first personal experience with learning how individualized we are, and how sometimes “estimations” and “average studies” don’t always work.
Eventually, I knew I needed to find some sort of balance in my life again, because even though I was getting back to a more normal weight, I was still in constant pain. The back issue was spiraling to no where. I needed to solve the mystery of my pain, and learn better coping.
Over the next year, I worked with an array of health professionals – from medical doctors and physical therapists, to chiropractors and acupuncturists, and even some Reiki healers. I used TENS units, ice, cupping, and even “vibration therapy” (using musical instruments such as crystal bowls to create sound vibrations targeted at my low back.) I was desperate to end my limiting pain! But no one could offer up anything succinct, since I didn’t officially know what was wrong with my back – Saipan did not have the MRI machine the doctors kept saying they needed to know more.
In search of answers and ideas, in 2014, I traveled to India to train to become a yoga teacher, hoping to learn more about the seemingly magical healing powers of yoga I kept hearing about – maybe they’d have more answers than the podcasts and videos I was doing. And while I was there, I had an MRI done and was diagnosed with loss of lower lumbar curve, and a protruding disc in the L5-S1 vertebrae. I took this news back to my doctors. Most medical practitioners and websites I found told me I’d need surgery and/or a series of steroid injections while doing physical therapy to heal. Others just gave me the vague prescription of “strengthen your core” with no more specifics or guidance when I asked other than “well, you should be able to do, maybe, 200 sit-ups. Plank is good, too.” Surgery and these specific shots were not available to me in Saipan, so I continued studying and looking for more answers (while trying to get up to 200 sit-ups) – still holding to a belief that my body could heal without such invasive procedures.
After diving in to the study of anatomy, myofascial release, and correcting muscle imbalances, I decided to take the NASM Personal Trainer exam since I was already mostly through their text book, and liked what I was reading. I passed in 2016, and began implementing Corrective Exercises plans that I created, for about 6 weeks, using a combination of appropriate strengthening and stretching, self massage and foam rolling, and appropriate yoga poses. I was able to finally lessen my back pain and joyously began small stints of jogging again in November of 2016! My Christmas gift to myself was a full subscription to the phone app, “Zombies, Run!” as I started to lengthen my time, bit by bit.
I remember the first time I stood up after a long session of “self myofacial release” (SMR) work – there hadn’t been gritting of teeth, or straining to push past the pain of getting up off the floor. In shock, I looked at my husband, and began to twist my body, testing various positions that often rocked pain through my body. And there was very little. I wiggled around for a few minutes in disbelief before accepting that something was different, something was better, and I cried in happiness over the relief. I knew the pain would come back over time, as the muscles resumed their multiple-year long habits – and it did a few hours later. But I had found the first key in working to correct it! Between repeated bouts of SMR and working to strengthen not just my abs from sit-ups, but my glutes, hamstrings, and entire trunk – while working on stretching and un-knotting various areas in my back and hips that had been locked up for years (and enhancing this all with nourishing, anti-inflammatory eating and proper supplements) I have been able to keep my pain to a minimum… low enough that I can do most of the things I enjoyed before: getting outside and moving!
And that’s just my story! With this new-found excitement for personalized nutrition and movement plans, I began to help my mom with her knee pain (she know thinks she could try skiing again!), my sister with her chronic migraines (she had her first headache-free day after about 6 weeks of work!), and my husband with his autoimmune disorder and IBS (he’s a severe case, still a work in progress, but we’re finding some solutions, slowly but surely!)
These series of events have lead to a passionate desire to help others find the cause of their own pain and limitations, and strive to correct imbalances and reach health and wellness goals – whether the pain is physical, mental, or emotional. Whether the barrier is physical, psychological, or physiological. I am so excited to be building new stories with new clients every day!
I moved back to my hometown of Dublin, Ohio, in 2017 with my devoted husband, and our fur-babies (two cats.) When I get a break from the responsibilities of life, you can find me running from imaginary zombies, reading for fun or study, playing board games or video games, experimenting in the kitchen, or thriving in nature – I am Solar Powered!
So now that you’ve gotten to know me a little, I hope you’ll share your own story with me! Let’s piece together the mystery of your health, and see where the adventure takes us 🙂 Shoot me an message, find me on Facebook, Instagram, or come to the Dublin LifeTime gym and let’s begin your journey!
- B.S in Dietetics from University of Cincinnati
- Dietetic Internship with The Ohio State University
- Certified LEAP Therapist (food sensitivities, FM, IBS, Migraines, and more)
- Certified Personal Trainer with NASM (National Academy of Sports Medicine)
- 200 Hour Registered Yoga Teacher
- Currently completing year-long Certificate of Training for Integrative and Functional Medical Nutrition Therapy (advanced nutrition therapy for finding and managing root-causes of disease and malaise)