Cambridge based Stacy Cappadona of Stacy Rae Wellness is a registered dietitian and exercise specialist with a Masters Degree in Exercise Science and Sports Nutrition. Here to encourage others to learn and apply scientifically sound strategies and habits to get permanent weight loss solutions, Stacy notes that she would “never suggest or recommend anything that I have not found to be supported by scientific evidence.” We all know that dieting in order to gain real long term desired results can be a nightmare at the best of tines, but Stacy aims to promote maintaining a healthy attitude towards food indulgence exercise, and wellness with out the feeling of guilt.
Hey Stacy, can you introduce yourself to us?
My name is Stacy Cappadona, I was born and raised in Florida, USA but I currently reside in Cambridge, UK with my incredible husband. I am an outdoor enthusiast, a lifelong student, and a Registered Dietitian and Exercise Specialist who helps women lose weight permanently.
Can you talk us through the path you have pathed to where you are now as an online wellness coach?
My childhood and young adult life were simple, and beautiful to me. My family was never rich, but we were never without. My sister and I were active and healthy with quality friendships and loving parents. Although neither of my parents attended University, it was always clear that I had a thirst for knowledge and higher education was going to be part of my journey.
Being a lifelong athlete, I was always interested in optimising the human body, improving physical performance, and elevating wellness. When beginning University, I thought that becoming a Medical Doctor would be the best way to work with people’s wellness directly, so I studied and took classes accordingly. That idea came crashing down around me four years later during my senior year of University when my mother was diagnosed with cancer.
My mother’s illness was my first up close experience with what life could look like if you lost your health. Since we grew up relatively healthy, it was also my first intimate interaction with health care and for the first time I saw it for what it really was, disease management. Seeing the drugs, the expenses, the physical and emotions stress, and the treatments that were causing my mom so much pain while they were trying to heal her. Over those long months, it became clear that medicine was not the direction that I wanted to go. I did not want to only treat disease. I did not want to only work with people once they were sick. I wanted to help people stay healthy. I wanted to help people optimise their wellness. I wanted to help people avoid prescription medication and illness all together through natural means.
Once my mom regained her health, still feeling a bit lost, I began to travel. I saved up money and bought a one-way ticket to Beijing, China. I spent nearly 2 years living out of a backpack and travelling Asia and South America. On this journey, removed from social media and societal expectations, I began to understand my life’s purpose. I saw how other cultures and countries manage health care and practice wellness. I saw how important community, movement, mindset, mental health, and whole foods were to your body. I began to witness and connect to the lives and experiences of others from all walks of life and developed an unquenchable thirst for knowledge and understood true empathy.
Once I returned home, I went straight back to school, this time though, to get my Masters in Exercise Physiology and Nutrition. After completing 3 years of formal education, my master’s thesis, a 10-month internship, and a national board exam, I accepted my first job working as a Registered Dietitian with the United States Air Force. This job was very fulfilling as I was able to work with many different people with many different goals, from tactical athletes who wanted to improve their performance, to their spouses who wanted to lose weight, to their children who wanted to focus better in school. Being able to serve my home nation’s service members and their families was an honour and it gave me so much joy to witness the physical and mental transformations of the people who I got to work with. This is also where I met my now husband.
Being married to the military created a new reality for me that took some adjusting to. The biggest adjustment was my loss of location freedom. We now live where we are told to live and stay for as long as we are told to stay. This meant me quitting my full-time position and becoming much more flexible with my professional expectations. Decades ago this might have been a huge challenge for me, but with technology today and the expansion of self-improvement and coaching through internet and social media, I knew that taking my business online would be the best option. Brining my business online would allow flexibility to maintain my practice wherever we end up, but also allow me to extend my reach and serve as many people as possible.
I quit my full-time job in October 2018, I hired an online business coach in November of 2018, and now in April of 2019 I have created a proven system that helps women lose weight permanently and have even been invited to be a featured speaker at this year’s Women in Business Summer Event this June 22nd in London! I guess it’s official, I am a Woman in Business.
What sparked your interest in working within the wellness industry?
After seeing first-hand what happens when you lose your health, my new goal became to help people avoid sickness all together. My mission is to help others stay healthy by teaching them how to care for themselves, mind, body, and soul, so that they never have to diet, take a prescription medication, or pay loads of money to manage a disease ever again.
I have also found that in many situations an efficient way to get ahead of disease is to address weight loss. The reality is most diseases in this world are preventable. And most of those preventable diseases begins with some form of health complications that stem from uncontrolled blood sugar and obesity. So, if I can support women in permanent weight loss through natural whole foods, mindset work, exercise, and education, chances are pretty good that I am also supporting them in disease prevention too. In most cases they go hand in hand.
How did you launch Stacy Rae Wellness as and how has the journey been so far?
The first thing that I did when I decided to build a business online was to invest in myself and hire a coach! I might have 7 years of formal education in health and wellness, but online marketing and building a digital business were not part of that curriculum.
I have had 2 business coaches so far and both have been absolutely incredible. The first focused on systems, numbers, and funnels. So, I began with a pretty solid understanding of these concepts and actually had a skeleton business launched within 90 days. I learned pretty quickly though that although these systems and tools are valuable, they were not the whole recipe. Although I had the systems, and the credentials, I was not being heard by my audience and I was not enrolling any clients. So, I kept digging.
The second coach that I invested in focused on me, the coach! He taught me that in order to be truly successful and to have the impact that I want to have, the foundation of my business needs to be built around my intentions, energy, and mindset. So, I began to focus primarily on myself. I know that may sound counterintuitive, but it actually was the missing link.
I started from the bottom and got clarity on my goal, I defined my true-life purpose, and built a business plan that was simple and powerful. I began reading my business plan and visualising my goals twice a day. I began to meditate for 10 minutes every morning and started a daily gratitude journal. I turned my focus and energy 100% to my intentions with my clients and they began to feel it. My Facebook group became more active, my audience began to hear me and were interested in what I had to say, and I began to book calls and enrol clients. Once my priority and focus were on my energy, mindset, and intentions for my business, I began to get the opportunity that I had been waiting for, to change women’s lives.
It has been a very tiring journey, and it has only been 6 months! I have a whole new respect for every single business owner on the planet. Working on yourself, breaking through your own barriers, and constantly growing so that you can better serve your audience is exhausting. Failing is exhausting too. I never knew that I could fail so much and still keep getting up in the morning to getting back too it. One thing that I have learned is I used to think that success was in the opposite direction of failure, but success is actually on the other side of failure. You must move through failure to reach success. Even Abraham Lincoln lost 8 of 10 elections before he became President of the United States. Was he remembered for his failures though? No, he was remembered for saving the Union and abolishing slavery. Imagine where my home nation, the USA, would be today if Abraham Lincoln gave up after failing a few times.
Can you tell us 3 ways in which your clients can benefit from working with you in comparison to other wellness coach’s we see today?
- Many wellness coaches provide a food and exercise plan for the client to follow, and while this might get them results during their work together, what happens when their working relationship ends? Most often the client tires of the meal plan provided, they don’t know what to do next, they revert back to their old ways, and gain all of that weight back again.
- I, on the other hand, go beyond telling my clients what to do and empower them with knowledge, teaching them everything that they need to know in order to make decisions for themselves. By the end of my program my clients are building their own meals plans and are leaving my care with all of the education and confidence they need to make lasting change. My goal is to only work with each and every one of my clients one time. My aim is to ensure my program is the last weight loss solution they will ever need because I don’t just tell them what to do, I teach them what I know.
- Secondly, many wellness coaches spend too much time on systems and actions and not enough time on mindset. Our success in weight loss and wellness, or in anything for that matter, is 80% mindset. My clients are not only given nutrition and exercise education, but I also help them create a mindset to allow space for success and mindfulness. The same way big roots hold up a big tree, without big mindset shifts, and regular mindset practice to keep those roots strong, no results will ever be permanent.
- Lastly, many of my clients have not achieved success in past efforts because other wellness coaches create very generic plans and expect the client to build their life around their food and exercise. This, to me, is ludicrous. Life is not meant to be lived obsessing over your food, exercise, body image, or current health state. When these things are always on your mind you won’t ever be present, and you will be missing out on life! How many celebrations have you sat out on, or showed up to only to worry about the food you’re eating and what other people are thinking?
Food, exercise, and your wellness are supposed to enhance your life, not control it. So, I work very closely with my clients to create a lifestyle that suits them. Whether they are the busy mom of 3, the boss lady CEO, or the college student, we always work together to create a realistic routine that fits in their lifestyle, not the other way around.
Where can you see yourself within the next 5 years and how are you planning to grow?
There is so much that can be done in 5 years! Look what has happened in 6 months! In the next 5 years I would love a dog, and many many more adventures to new countries, beaches, and mountain tops. I would love to create a consistent connection with the people who mean the most to me (it’s been tough staying in touch with the time zone changes) whether that means regular face time dates or annual vacations. I would also love to still be growing in love with my husband.
Professionally speaking I see myself creating a global impact and influencing women’s health everywhere. In 5 years, I would love to have created a program that is compatible for bigger groups so that I could work with dozens of women at one time. I would love to have grown my team so that I could extend my reach to different countries and work with women in all corners. I would love to have had opportunities to speak to groups all over the world and empower people to make change. And ultimately, I want to continue to live and stay true to my true-life’s purpose of empowering others to live their highest quality of life, simply.
What avenues are you exploring to promote Stacy Rae Wellness?
At this time, I am using Facebook Ads to build an email list, my private Facebook Group Proven Weight Loss Solutions, and Instagram to promote my business. I only began this journey 6 months ago, and those are the only methods that I know to date. I am excited to continue to learn and extend my methods over time!
What gives you both ultimate career satisfaction?
I light up when I hear my clients begin to identify non-scale victories over our time together. In my program, non-scale victories are all things not related to the scale! So, when a woman’s clothes are too big, and she has to go shopping for the next size down. Or when a woman who has not had the confidence to date goes out for the first time in 8 months. Or when a client begins to sleep better which improves her work performance and mood with her children. Or when a client is taken off of a prescription medication, they had been prescribed with years ago! These are all the non-scale victories that truly light up my life.
We all know weight loss is more than just a number on a scale. It is about energy to play with your kids, sureness to show up and be present at holidays, celebrations and group outings, confidence to build new relationships and to be intimate with old ones, strength to perform better at work, and conviction to live in a growth mindset. Ultimate career satisfaction to me is when my clients reach weight loss and wellness goals that allow them to live the lives that they truly deserve.
How do you define your own success?
Success to me is feeling excited when I wake up in the morning and feeling fulfilled when I go to bed at night. Positively impacting women around the world plays a huge part in that.
What does #BEYOUROWN mean to you?
#BEYOUROWN means to recognise, accept, and love yourself for who you are and why you were put here on this planet. It means adapting to life as it changes around you and keeping your true-life purpose and mission on the forefront regardless of life events, other people’s opinions, and the number of failures that you must move through to live out your purpose.
Finally, what are you working on throughout 2019?
In 2019 I am working on living every day according to my true-life purpose, which is to witness and connect to the lives and experiences of others and to use my thirst for knowledge, empathy, and bravery to inspire, teach, and empower them to live their highest quality of life, simply. I help women lose weight permanently. Every day is dedicated to that and that is my only focus.
Image taken by Ollie Matthews