Your challenges? Stress, time management, sweet cravings, eating out a lot, too much other stuff going on to cook healthy, conflicting info about carbs and fats, extreme approaches, and did we mention time management? Your solution -- THE LEAN TEAM! Right here at your fingertips, and the cost per week is about what you spend at the coffee shop every week. Truth be told. It's only $59 for 6 weeks of accountability and team support, expert advice from our own amazing Precision nutrition coach Emma Hammond, focused steps instead of overwhelming overturning change -- and we deliver it to you online! Team up, turn the corner, and let's get a grip on this nutrition thing.

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Emma Hammond is our Precision Nutrition Coach and brings you this SUPER-MANAGEABLE way to make good healthy eating choices a regular part of your hectic world! $75 INCLUDES 1 monthly in person consult plus weekly online check ins, goal setting, food journal feedback, and support. Convenient accountability to make sure your diet is fueling the results you want from all the hard work you put in at the Center!

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MAX-COACHING is about major change! Listen to this happy rave from one of Emma's clients, Jennifer: "Nutrition coaching has helped me cut out sugary drinks, eat better breakfasts, choose better snacks, cook and eat more vegetables and to watch my portion sizes. I am better at some of these things than others, but for sure have made some great changes that I think are great for my health and for the health of my family. Thank You, Emma! You're so awesome! Between the nurtition coaching, the back excercises that I do each morning (that I learned in PT during the spring) and the regular exercise, I am feeling great, and definitely so much better than I did earlier this year." $649 INCLUDES 12 weeks of a totally customized nutrition protocol to meet your goals and embrace your lifestyle. Bi-weekly in person coaching sessions, weekly online check ins, unlimited email q&a/trouble-shooting, weekly specific goal setting, personalized nutrition education, tracking resources, and more! A measurable difference for the better YOU CAN SEE is going to make it so worthwhile!

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$125/session INCLUDES 1 in person consult with a food journal, fitness and lifestyle assessment with personalized recommendations to optimize your results! You feel like you have been on the right track but your progress or your energy level have gotten kind of stuck. Well, get with Emma and get unstuck! Get your questions answered and get yourself BACK ON TRACK in one meeting.

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Ok, I’ll admit it. While I have never claimed that microwaving your food changes the molecular structure such that it more likely gives you cancer, I do avoid microwaving my food in general. It has always “felt” better to me (sigh…yes, “healthier”) to do it the “old fashioned way” on the stove or in the oven.

There is evidence, however, that microwaving your food really is fine, albeit not in anything plastic (a BIG no-no), and that the microwave itself isn’t a significant source of radiation.

There have been studies done on leakage from microwaves, but they show that leakage to be small (usually below FDA standards). Additionally, any leakage dissipates rapidly the further from the microwave you are. In comparison, a 2013 study measured microwave radiation emitted by cell phones and found that having a cell phone in your pocket on silent mode exposes you to roughly the same level of microwave radiation as standing one meter from your microwave while it’s heating food.

So, if you just keep from smashing your face up against the microwave while it’s cooking and maybe even step back several feet, you’ll be better off than carrying that cell phone around in your pocket!

I have heard the claim that microwaves alter (denature) the proteins, but, in fact, any cooking/heating denatures the proteins in food. The job of our stomach acid is to denature (unfold) the proteins so that our bodies can actually utilize the nutrients, so the denaturing of proteins maybe isn’t such a scary thing. The literature really doesn’t support the idea that microwaves decrease or destroy nutrients any more than conventional cooking; it is more an issue of overcooking than the specific cooking method.

So, while I may not move to cooking my food in the microwave, I have to soften my stance and opinion on whether it is “ better” to heat things conventionally or do it in the microwave. If using the microwave to re-heat your clean meal from last night’s dinner means the difference between eating well or grabbing a “bar”, then I say, “USE THE MICROWAVE!”

Maybe we ought to turn our attention to finding ways to distance ourselves from our cell phones instead., there’s a thought!

Vitamin D - the New Superhero!

Anyone who hasn’t heard at least one claim about the role and importance of Vitamin D in our bodies probably has been living under a rock for the past several years. But, is all the hype true, or is it just that - hype?

Well, friends, it’s true!

Vitamin D has always been associated with strong bones, but did you know it is critical to a healthy immune system and can provide protection against some types of cancer? And, have you heard reports from some recent studies that suggest vitamin D can treat heart failure, protect against heart attacks, and reduce the risk of death from both cardiovascular disease and other causes?

So, how does vitamin D work?

It acts as a potent hormone in more than a dozen types of tissues and cells in the body, regulating expression of essential genes and rapidly activating already expressed enzymes and proteins. In the heart, vitamin D binds to specific vitamin D receptors and produces a “calming”, protective effect. It also helps inflammatory markers, as well as oxidative damage to cells, which are the primary causes of heart disease and contributing factors to diabetes, metabolic syndrome, cancer, and many other diseases.

And, it is so easy to get vitamin D! Spending 30 minutes a day in the sunshine will do it. Period.

“But I don’t want skin cancer!”, you say. Hold on … Chris Kresser writes about the protective effects of exposure to sunlight against melanoma. Yep, sun exposure can actually PROTECT us from skin cancer. It turns out that the vitamin D our bodies synthesize when exposed to UV light is a first line of defense against developing melanoma.

Now, that doesn’t mean go bake yourself and get burned to a crisp. It does mean, however, to go outside and play with minimal clothing or sunscreen for 20-30 minutes a day. Practicing ‘responsible sun worship’ is good for your heart, your body, AND it’ll lift your spirits at the same time!

Who isn’t happier after hanging out in the sunshine?

Healthy Eating I: Breakfast

Recently I was watching TV and saw an ad for cereal. You know the one - just look for the "check mark" and you will know that it is "healthy" for your family with "whole grain", vitamins, and minerals. Now, I may have grown up with a Mother who was a home economics teacher (yes, its true...I'm a foodie at heart) and have a background in fitness and nutrition, but I'm pretty sure that just about everyone would agree that its a stretch to consider Fruit Loops, Lucky Charms and Cocoa Puffs as "healthy and nutritious". Then again, they tout Pop-tarts as a nutritious start to your families' days too....

What to do when things are so confusing and we're all so busy? What IS the best way to start your day? Eat? Skip it? Just go on a coffee buzz....??? Here are a few tips and ideas to make sure you are getting the best start to your day possible:

DO NOT skip breakfast. Yes, your Mother was right - it is definitely the most important meal of the day. I see it again and again - those who skip breakfast end up making less nutritious choices during the day and, overall, usually end up eating more calories as well.

Balance your breakfast (and all meals) with a little protein, carbohydrate, and fat (unsaturated is, of course, best). This will help keep your blood sugar stable for the morning, not only keeping you from getting super hungry and caving into eating that donut but also will keep you energized and your brain functioning as well.

Minimize juices and calories coming from drinks like "smoothies" if possible. The more bulk you eat (i.e., actual fruit), the more fiber you consume and the more satiated you feel.

If you are short on time, make a piece of whole grain toast and put some (natural) peanut- or other nut-butter on it and take it with you. A little honey or fruit preserves will sweeten it without adding very many calories. Or, better yet, slice up some apples and put on top for a little more crunch and some sweetness!

A SMALL amount of granola in a plain yogurt will give it a little crunch, you a little more fiber and is a great way to begin your day. Remember that most granola is high in sugar and calories so think of it as a condiment. Add just a little on top or, better yet, leave your yogurt in its individual container and put enough on top that you can still stir it in without'll be just the right amount!

Try the recipe under "Cook Book" for Muff-kies. They have no added sugar or fat and are full of fiber and nutrients and are easy to grab on your way out the door if you dont' even have time even for a quick piece of toast or cup of yogurt. Make a batch this weekend and you'll be set for a couple of weeks!

Be aware that stops at the drive-thru will cost you $ AND can cost you lots in calories. Did you know that a Starbucks Grande non-fat White Chocolate Mocha without whipped cream and coffee cake is almost 500 calories ... 470 to be exact. Switch to "Reduced-fat" coffee cake and you save zero. Yes, that is zero in calories; all you do is switch fat for sugar. So, eat at home. You'll be better off!

If your (or your kids') favorite breakfast foods have ingredient lists that includes more than 5 ingredients and things that you could not pronounce even with a dictionary, skip it. Grab a peanut butter sandwich to go with your morning coffee. You'll be much better off in the end!

Don't be afraid to eat unconventional things for breakfast. I have been known to have some of last night's left over roasted chicken or grilled fish (protein) on my Ezekiel toast (carbohydrate and yuuummmy - its a really healthy bread made from sprouted grain that has fewer calories and more protein than most other choices out there) that I have spread with a little avocado (fat). My tummy and brain are HAPPY on those days!

Breakfast doesn't have to be fancy or complicated and can be as easy and quick as a piece of toast to take with you on your way to start the day. Bottom line, if you can eat something healthful in the morning you will come out ahead at the end of the day all the way around. So, have a fantastic breakfast and the same kind of day!!!!