Fit Feature: Mindy Patnoude 

Mindy Patnoude, 37, is an English teacher at Okemos High School, as well as a health coach. She said her love of fitness has evolved as she keeps up with her five-year-old daughter. “I used to view my workouts as a means to get skinnier, or to punish myself for poor eating choices. Now I work out because it makes me feel good,” she said. “Being healthy is a top priority for me. I feel good about myself. I have more energy and more confidence. I also want to be a role model and an example of the kind of strong and healthy woman that I want my daughter to grow up to be.”

Patnoude said her workouts consist of programs she can do at home (check out her Facebook page and Instagram), or anywhere, at any time, based on availability with her full-time schedule. It took some getting used to, but she feels the workouts have been great.

“I honestly laughed and thought they could never challenge me in the way that my workouts at the gym did,” she said. “But one of the best things I ever did was give them a try. Now I choose programs to follow that I can actually do anywhere, and I usually work out from home for 30-40 minutes/day. My workouts are always different. I’m excited to dig deep and re-discover my inner-athlete!”

She said she struggles with her eating. She’s overcome disordered eating, which she said has helped her with her clients. “Whatever my challengers are struggling with, chances are I’ve struggled with it, too,” she said. “My main goal, both for myself and for the women I coach, is to ditch the dieting for good and to focus on building a healthy, long-term lifestyle. This means focusing on eating clean, whole, healthy foods in reasonable portions.”

She said fitness has been a positive force in her life and she makes sure she dedicates a time to work out. “Setting aside a small amount of time each day for some kind of workout means that I’m doing something that fills me back up and I’m making sure that taking care of myself is a priority,” she said. “I’ve realized that I have a passion for helping others, especially other women who are struggling with feeling good in their own skin and finding time to make their own health journey a priority. So I do share a lot on Facebook (@mindy.patnoude) and Instagram (@strong_healthy_mama) because it’s how I reach out and find other women who need my help. Social media is a very powerful tool when it comes to helping people find support for a healthy lifestyle.”

Her advice?  “I have learned a simple formula that I really think holds true: Consistency + Time = Success. I believe that most people are held back from reaching their goals because of impatience. We expect that hard work will bring quick results. Most people lack patience when it comes to following a healthy lifestyle plan, consistently, over time.”


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