BITE Coach and Co-Founder Catharine Adams recently “sat down” for a virtual interview with Mind & Muscle‘s Amy Pico. In it, she describes what led her to a career in fitness and nutrition, and explains her coaching priorities and strategies.
How did your fitness journey begin?
Before my husband and I had kids, I was active. I worked out consistently at the gym and did lots of hiking and biking. I opened a health supplement store and was very interested in nutrition and health. Along came the kids and my personal attention to myself diminished slowly over the next 8 years. Then I had a life-threatening scare, and it was the catalyst for turning me back to a lifestyle of prioritizing my physical well being. I had a ruptured ectopic pregnancy and was rushed to the emergency room. After the surgery, I realized I was very lucky to be alive. I couldn’t believe that in one minute I was fine, and in the next — my life was threatened. I was scared, and I started the “what if” scenarios in my mind. I knew my best chance at being there for my kids and husband long-term was to start taking better care of myself. I wanted to build a strong body so I could handle anything that came my way. This led me back to my health, training and nutrition journey.
Looking back now what would you have done differently?
I don’t think I would, to be honest. I am really happy where I have landed, in spite of some very difficult times. I’ve learned a lot, and will carry this knowledge with me throughout the rest of my years. I’ve learned the importance of Balance, being Inspired by myself and others, Training well without over-training, and to always seek Excellence in everything I do. This is where the name of our company (BITE Nutrition) came from! 🙂
How did you become a (nutrition/fitness) coach?
In my life before kids, I had been a counselor at a clinic for eating disorders and worked in the health food industry. I really enjoyed helping people with their nutritional needs and their mindset. After realizing I wanted to be healthy again, I searched for the “key” to fat loss. I spent all my time reading and studying about the latest and greatest nutritional tips. I had been following a ketogenic diet for a few months, then Paleo, when I came across Eat to Perform. I met the most wonderful coaches in the forum, with April Blackford as my friend and confidant. The idea of using carbs beneficially was like a dream come true after keto misery! I worked my tail off — training hard and following my deficit macros to a tee. I had a miraculous transformation, building lots more muscle and losing body fat. With that, I was offered a job!
As my time with ETP came to a close I realized there were specific aspects of coaching I really wanted to emphasize. I have always enjoyed getting down to the nitty-gritty of macros, healthy habits, and training strategies with clients. But what I’m really passionate about is building long-term relationships with people, getting to know them on a personal level, and taking all of that into account to help them live a more balanced, fulfilling life. It was the perfect time to develop my coaching practice into one that embraced that vision. I am now able to work with a small number of clients and really have the time to build relationships with them and make a positive difference in their lives. It’s only when you are able to build those relationships that you can really understand a person’s day-to-day challenges and start helping them build healthier habits. With that vision in mind, I connected with some wonderful coaches I had met along the way and together, we launched BITE Nutrition.
What does your own training schedule look like?
I like to dabble in everything. So my training is a combination of powerlifting and crossfit with a lot of outdoor pursuits. I enjoy mountain biking, hiking, downhill skiing, cross country skiing, stand up paddle along with some yoga sprinkled in there too. I don’t have set days that I train. I train completely on my HRV (heart rate variability) rating.
How has your relationship to food changed since you started your fitness journey?
I don’t see food as good or bad. It’s more a question of whether or not it will help me recover well. I also don’t feel guilty if I have a treat every now and then. It’s a great place to be.
What is your “why”?
I wake up everyday thinking about how I can help improve, support and enrich someone else’s life. I am a busy mom and wife, so I get to do that every day with my family. But I love to have this vibrant, supportive, encouraging little corner of the online world where I can help other people live more balanced lives. Being able to make a positive difference in people’s lives, some of whom I’ve never met in person, is really motivating and fulfilling. Seeing them get great physical results and transform their bodies is icing on the cake.
What kind of feedback would you give a client who is struggling with mindset as it relates to training/health/wellness?
I think the first and most important idea to relay to all clients is empathy — really listening to them and understanding their feelings. I find more often than not, people don’t need to be “fixed”, they need to be listened to and feel understood. It’s from that place of understanding that you can really dig in to the root issues and start facilitating some positive change.
Catharine Adams is the co-founder of BITE Nutrition, and was first introduced to the importance of health and fitness when she began working as a care-worker/counselor at a world-renowned eating disorder clinic. She later combined her active lifestyle and desire to care for and help others. Combined with her extensive background and experience, her collaborative and positive approach produces results. Want to work with Catharine? Sign up now!