In elementary school I wanted to be a farmer or a flower shop owner (lol), in middle school I wanted to be an interior designer, and in high school I knew I wanted to be in the health and wellness field (and own a bed and breakfast). While I technically would still be happy with any of those options (and do plan to eventually have that bed and breakfast), participating in cross country in high school led me to know my calling was to help other people be healthy and happy.
Cross country was really hard for me, it definitely did not come naturally. I wanted to be good at it though so I practiced hard, started weight training, cut out soda and started eating healthier. While my running improved over time and I did make varsity my Sophomore year, my biggest takeaway from it all was how good I felt when I took care of myself. I have continued this (and kept up running) ever since. It was never as a diet, or a quick fix, but a long-term, healthy lifestyle.
I decided to go to school at Texas State University for Health and Fitness Management with a minor in Business Administration. Even in high school I knew I eventually wanted to run my own business but I wasn't quite sure doing what exactly. I went on to do corporate wellness for years, managed a gym and worked as a health educator in a hospital .
Through all of those positions I started realizing what I enjoyed most was working one on one with clients and helping to directly impact their lives - and cooking (I took cooking classes in middle school and high school and always cooked with my family so it was something I continued doing from there).
I eventually started doing something completely different and that is when I finally realized what it was that I wanted. Ever since I was little I was always very aware that life is precious and you never know when it may end. I grew up knowing that my dad's brother died of cancer when he was only a kid, his dad died of a heart attack, his mom died of brain cancer and my mom's dad died of pancreatic cancer.
Because of that, I think I have two different thoughts that drive me:
So with these thoughts that have always been in my head, one day I listened to a podcast on health coaching and I immediately knew that was what I was called to do - work directly (or indirectly) with people to help them improve their lives like I did when I started changing my habits and behaviors in high school. It took a long time after making that decision to actually get started on my own. I kept working while I was studying for my certification and eventually went to part-time with the idea that I could start my business and still have a secure job. It started growing faster than I thought though and I had to quit so I could put all of my focus on my new health coaching business. I officially started full-time with Elena McCown, LLC on March 6th, 2018.
Owning a business definitely has ups and downs but I wouldn't trade it for anything in the world. I love that I am making a difference each day and impacting people's lives for the better. I want everyone to see that you CAN live a healthier, happier life just by implementing small changes over time. It doesn't have to be some drastic movement to see a difference. I enjoy guiding others to find the balance that works specifically for them. Everybody's path looks different. We don't strive for perfection, just progress.
Don't you want to make choices that help you to actually FEEL better each and every day? I know I do.
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I am a food loving, activity seeking health coach who resides in Franklin, TN with my husband and two sweet dogs (Lola & Penny).
I believe everyone should eat balanced and not cut food groups if you don't medically need to. All foods can fit in a healthy diet. Unfortunately, I have to avoid gluten and also limit myself with dairy, so my goal is to provide healthy, gluten-free/dairy-free recipes so EVERYONE can enjoy all foods, even if you do have to cut out certain food groups. My recipes are encouraged for everyone to eat, not just for those with sensitivities/allergies! Most of my recipes can be easily converted by using real dairy and whole-wheat in place of my allergy-free substitutes.
Looking for something specific? Everything can be found by category under the "Life" and "Recipes" sections on my website or you can search below.