Answering your Fit and Flourishing questions!

Since we rolled out the Fit and Flourishing program in May, a LOT of people who both listen to the radio show and who follow us on Facebook have been emailing me asking what it’s all about.  Some have asked things like, “Is it just a personal trainer?”, or “How can you train me when you are down south and I am in New York?”

I figured the best way to get everyone’s questions answered was to just do a blog post that explains the program in more detail and clarifies what we are all about and why we are doing this program. So here are the answers to your FAQ’s!  If I miss one, feel free to message me and I will get yours answered!

“What made you become a personal trainer and start Fit and Flourishing?” 

This is the one I seem to get the most often.  Once I made the decision to change my life forever and get healthy, one of the first things I did after having my gastric bypass was to join a gym and hire a personal trainer.  I knew I wanted to do things the right way.  I learned very quickly that having a trainer who has never lived as an obese person nor who knows anything about bariatrics was not a great idea.  If you watch those shows on TV  that feature weight loss, you will see things like trainers working clients util they puke.  The minute my own trainer informed me that I would likely work out until I puked, I knew I was in trouble.  Anyone who knows anything about bariatrics knows that making a patient puke is not a good idea.

I also learned very quickly that most of the boot-camps  and other programs advertised out there are just not realistic.  The average person in real life with a job and family just does not have 2 hours per day to spend on a fitness program.  I also got bored with my trainer very quickly.  I know that if a workout plan is not fun and changing constantly, a person will not stick with it and make it a habit.

Over time, as I lost 130 pounds and became a runner and learned more and more about good nutrition and how to fuel my body for athletics, I decided that this was my passion.  I wanted to help others and so i began to take classes and start the process to become both a Certified Personal Trainer as well as a Certified Fitness Nutrition Coach.  I then added Water Fitness Instructor and Lifestyle and Weight Management Specialist and am currently working on my Master Trainer certification as well.

I believe every person should have access to a realistic and affordable fitness plan that also fits into their schedule and that they can do on THEIR TIME.  Out of this passion, Fit and Flourishing was born!

“What makes your program different from something like Weight Watchers, or Jenny Craig and what makes it different from a traditional trainer at the gym?”

This is the second most asked question.  First of all, the national programs out there are diets.  Call them anything you like, but they are diets and DIETS DO NOT WORK.  A diet will work as long as you stay on the diet, but then, as soon as real life takes over and you get off the DIET, you gain weight.  often we gain back even more than we lost.  Have you ever actually read the ingredients list for most of the processed packaged foods offered on these diets?  It is scary to say the least.  There is just nothing healthy about full meals that require no refrigeration and frozen meals that require no prep at all.  We need to learn about eating healthy balanced whole foods that are plant heavy and full of nutrients.  I do not like the idea that eating cake every day is acceptable as long as you take something else out to make up for the calories and “points” of the cake.  How does this teach you healthy habits that can last a lifetime?

As for the trainer aspect, When you see a traditional trainer in the gym, you see them once or twice a week and that is all you do.  With our program, members have access to their trainer, me, daily if they choose.  I actually get upset when members go more than a day or two without contacting me!  The accountability and constant contact and daily support are so much more than you can get in a traditional setting.  My local in person clients also get the same access as the online only ones and it works very well.  The fact that we have the online support group and monthly webinars on various health and fitness and nutrition topics, makes this program even more special!

Every client becomes like part of my family and I would never dream of not having the personal touches.  I also love the fact that every member gets their own personal web page to track results and keep on target with workouts.  Once we set their plans up, they get this in their email and every exercise comes with a little instructional video.  What makes it great is that you can do your workouts at home or at the gym.  It is all up to you and your personal preferences.

“How can I be a success doing everything with you online and not in person?”

This is another one I get asked very often.  I would say refer to the last question!  It all comes down to the daily communication we have and messages and emails from me and using the online support group etc.  Still not sure?  Just look at what a few of my clients have to say!

This is from Theresa in Indiana-

“I came in contact with Erin at a time when I was getting discouraged in my Weight Loss Journey.   Erin with Fit and Flourishing has been the turning point for me.  I have been very successful in my journey but when I had a concern I was told more than once by my doctor and his staff that I was doing great and to just keep it up.   Well that was the last thing I needed to do was just keep it up.  I needed to have someone who would tell me yes you are doing good but you could tweak this here or there.  I needed someone who would listen to me and then help me to find the solution.  Someone who would not just rubber stamp me as successful but who would look at the whole picture and tell me what I needed to be doing.  Erin has been this person with her program and she has guided me without making me feel guilt when I fail.  She has been the person who cared enough to say you need to make a course change if you want to stay successful.   Erin has worked with my exercises and adjusted them so many times for me.  She has tweaked them so that I can do them with my physical issues.   I love the fact that when I need to talk to Erin she is there and I do not have to wait until my next progress appointment.  I love that she makes herself available almost constantly.  This program is well worth the monthly fee and is actually a great deal with all of the support that she gives us. Try it out you won’t be disappointed!” –Theresa Lance

Or this from Laurie in Oklahoma-

“I love being part of the Fit and Flourishing group. As someone trying to make healthy lifestyle choices but doing it solo, it can be hard.   I have lots of moral support around me but no one doing the day to day the with me as Erin does and it helps tremendously to also have a group of people encouraging one another and doing similar activities together. I also love the fact that Erin can see what I am eating and suggest things that may be better. I love that this is program that is made specifically for me. Erin is such an encouragement and really has a great program. She and her program are helping me to make healthy lifestyle changes that I can keep forever.”

I can talk all day long about how it works and why, but I think talking to members who have been successful speaks a lot louder than I ever could.  I have a group of amazing and very strong people on this program.  Many are bariatric patients and many are not.  They work so hard and see results.  The best thing is that they are not doing anything crazy or extreme or having to buy expensive food or supplements.  It is all about healthy and balanced choices and developing good habits and getting their bodies moving!

“You do not look like the typical trainer.  Is that ever an issue?”

It is certainly not an issue for me!  And if you ask my clients, it is also not an issue for them!  This program is all about the real world.  In the real world, most of us will never look like we can be on the cover of a body-building magazine or on the cover of Sports Illustrated.  The goal for us all should be optimal health and fitness.  If you want to lose weight just to look like a bikini model, and you have over 50-75 pounds to lose, that is not realistic for most without a lot of plastic surgery!  I am six feet tall and went from a size 26-28 to a 12.  i have lost over 130 pounds and can exercise circles around many who “look skinny” but who are not fit.  One day I will have skin removal, and then be a size 8 or 10, but right now, I am perfectly happy with my fit and healthy body and hope to teach my clients to love themselves and love what they are given! I will never be a tiny girl and that is okay!  Skinny does not equal healthy by default!

You will never hear me make a promise to a client that they will look like a supermodel or be the skinniest girl on the block.  What I will promise is a program that will teach you to make small changes one at a time that result in big changes to your body and overall health and fitness.  And until we can all afford skin removal, thank goodness for things like Slimpressions!

I tell all of my clients it is all about PROGRESS, NOT PERFECTION!

“How can you offer all of this for only $30.00 per month?”

This is my passion.  losing weight and becoming active literally saved my life and I believe that with my whole heart.  Ever since then, helping others find realistic, real-world solutions that are within their budget has been my goal and mission.  I know how bad the economy is right now.  I know many people cannot afford the luxury of a traditional personal trainer. I also know that while the time I spend to set up and follow each client is worth well more than the $30.00 per month, and I will never get rich doing this, i sleep well at night knowing I am offering a real value and truly helping others.  The fee barely covers my software and PayPal costs and I have never turned anyone away for not being able to pay.  To me there is more value in a letter or note from one of my clients who is doing better and feeling stronger and getting healthy, than there could ever be in charging traditional training fees of $50-100 per hour.  Bottom line is I love what I do and love my clients and I want EVERYONE who wants to be healthy to have access to the services and programs we provide.

Bottom line- this is more than a job for me, it is my life.  There is so much freedom and liberation that comes with not being ruled by food and fat and the disease of obesity.  This is why I do my radio show, this is why I became a trainer, and this is why I do everything I do! My dream is for this disease to finally be stopped in its’ tracks once and for all and we have to start with ourselves, and then our children to break the trend.

We are now offering an ambassador program where you can join us and we will donate $10.00 in your name to the WLSFA or the OAC.  This is a great way to get healthy and help others at the same time.  You can even split the money between the two! Just put where you want the fee to go in the comment section of the registration form!

Hope this answers all!  Anybody who wants to try the program can do so for two weeks for free!  Just go to this link and sign up and see what you think!  We would all love to welcome you to the family!




About Erin Akey

I am a formerly morbidly obese wife, mother, Christian, author, speaker, water fitness instructor, nutritionist, anti-obesity advocate, and Emerald Ambassador with Plexus Worldwide. I am passionate about helping people fight the disease of obesity and also preventing and addressing obesity in children. I believe we have so many amazing tools available to treat this disease and we all need to take advantage of the ones we feel are right for us. I am also passionate about women taking the time to care for their needs. We live in a world where so many of us spend all of our time taking care of others that we neglect ourselves. I am all about making God the center of everything and letting His will take control of our lives and watching the beautiful blessings come from that release of power! Live, Laugh, and LOVE every day! Be grateful and be humble and watch the world around you change!
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