Women's Health

Rise of the Wellness Coach


Five years ago, Jennifer Aube, now 36, of Toronto, was 5'4", 245 pounds, and desperate to lose weight. So when her new gym offered weekly $60 appointments with a wellness coach, she booked a session immediately, without looking into his credentials. “We talked about my usual diet and activity level, and he asked, ‘How hard are you willing to work?’” she recalls. Then he gave her a boilerplate plan: 60 to 90 minutes on the elliptical six days a week and a 1,400-calorie-a-day diet, with small meals, protein shakes, energy bars, and a once-a-week 24-hour liquid cleanse. She pushed herself—but the weight didn’t exactly fall off. “I had to weigh in every week, and when I just lost a pound, the coach looked at me like I was cheating,” she says. “He didn’t ask how I was feeling or my daily stressors or anything. It was all about one thing: the scale.” A month into her new routine, he sold her a caffeine supplement to “jump-start” her metabolism. It revved up

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