Meet Health Coach Mary Grazen-Browne: Follows Consistency, Commitment and Mindfulness

Thursday, August 4th, 2011
This post was written by Jessica Fornarotto

This month’s inside look at a health coach, the choices he or she has made on the road to success, and the challenges ahead.

Excerpted from the August 2011 HealthCoach Huddle.

Mary Grazen-Browne, owner at Wellness by Choice, holistic nutritionist/lifestyle educator at Manchester Athletic Club, and wellness coach/consultant and registered holistic nutritionist at Wellness by Choice.

HIN: What was your first job out of college and how did you get into health coaching?

Mary Grazen-Browne: My first job was physical education and health teacher/special education for 35 years. In my mid-40’s, I had a bad irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) and I was ‘cured’ via a holistic nutritionist. Then, I pursued certifications as a health educator and registered holistic nutritionist. Then, I was certified as a wellness coach to help my clients with behavioral change.

Has there been a defining moment in your career? Perhaps when you knew you were on the right road.

Yes. After I was working part-time as a nutritionist, I realized that all of my teaching did not matter but that the behavioral change and support is what people needed to make the changes they wanted to make and keep.

In brief, describe your organization.

I am the sole owner of Wellness by Choice. I offer holistic nutrition consults, lifestyle education for weight management, and age-related disease and energy combined with wellness coaching.

What are two or three important concepts or rules that you follow in health coaching?

I follow consistency, commitment and mindfulness.

What is the single most successful thing that your company is doing now?

We are offering a program titled “Mindful Weighs.” It is a 12-session program including bioelectrical impedence analysis (BIA) screenings.

Do you see a trend or path that you have to lock onto for 2011?

To reach out more. Market to as many people as possible and be visible. Word of mouth is the best advertising.

What is the most satisfying thing about being a health coach?

Seeing people change and improve their health, and the gratification they have from their efforts.

Where did you grow up?

New York and Connecticut.

What college did you attend? Is there a moment from that time that stands out?

I attended Keene State College in New Hampshire. The moment that stands out to me is that I knew I was an educator and that I needed to be active. Therefore, being a physical education and health major was perfect for me.

Are you married? Do you have children?

Yes I have been married for 33 years and I have two children.

What is your favorite hobby and how did it develop in your life?

I like gardening, which I learned from my mom, and I like sewing, which I learned from Home EC in seventh grade. I like to kayak since I live on the water, and I like to golf — I had to give up tennis due to a low back injury — and I like being with my family as well.

Is there a book you recently read or movie you saw that you would recommend?

I loved the “Girl with the Dragon Tatoo” series and I am reading “Primal Body, Primal Mind.” This is an excellent book and it reinforces what I do now.

Any additional comments?

This is an evolving career. People who value their health will invest in it and I hope that someday there will be insurance to support the lifestyle coaching and nutrition information I offer to others.

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