During the last 26 years, we’ve certified over 119,000 health, nutrition, and fitness professionals. Each month, we recognize one of our distinguished graduates who use what they have learned to inspire others and make a difference.
Meet our graduate for the month of December, Genny Mack, an AFPA certified Holistic Nutritionist
How did you initially become interested in health and fitness?
In 2017, I was diagnosed with Lupus, an autoimmune disease that attacks my kidneys, lungs, skin, and joints. I knew there was a way to heal myself and feel better. I started to exercise 5xs/week and saw tremendous improvement in my overall well-being. I decided to become a Certified Group Fitness Instructor to share my passion for fitness. Fast forward to 2018, and I was hospitalized for over a month due to a severe Lupus flare, which felt like pneumonia. I knew that only exercising wasn’t enough. This led me to explore a holistic lifestyle, and I became interested in plant-based eating. It’s incredible where life takes you to share your story and serve others.
What certification did you choose, and why did you choose AFPA?
I chose the Holistic Nutrition Certification with AFPA, as I was looking to learn more about eating and living clean to increase my overall well-being. I knew that plant-based living was the way to change my life, make a cleaner environment, and inspire others to do the same. I also knew that nutrition was just as important as exercise to really make an impact on someone’s life. AFPA met all my criteria, as I work full-time as a Director of Audit and part-time as a COO/Lead Fitness Instructor with GrillzandGranola and was looking for a self-study course. It was perfect for my schedule.
What was your career like prior to becoming certified?
Before becoming certified, I was mainly focused on teaching TrapAerobics classes with GrillzandGranola, which is a fitness company for women of color that provides inclusive and accessible culturally-attuned fitness experiences. It has been a successful pivot in the middle of a pandemic with COVID-19 to serve the community virtually.
What is your career like now?
Now, I have complimented my fitness wellness services and also provide plant-based coaching with “Gennymackmeals.” I have already seen tremendous growth and engagement! It has been a blessing in disguise now that our world has migrated to a digital space. I can connect with clients much easier virtually. For example, I share #MeatlessMonday recipe ideas via IG Live for people looking to incorporate more plant-based eating. It’s all about meeting people where they are. I am getting one step closer to living my dream as an entrepreneur!
What are your favorite parts of your career?
My favorite part of my career is hearing transformational stories from my clients. They feel better, lose unwanted weight, eat smarter, and overall feel more confident to succeed in their personal aspirations! The connections are priceless!
How has becoming certified with AFPA impacted your life?
Becoming a certified AFPA Holistic Nutritionist has definitely elevated my life! I have learned an incredible amount of knowledge that I never knew about eating the foods that this wonderful earth has placed for us! I personally can make smarter and informed decisions about my health when visiting the doctors, too, and share with the community to do the same! I personally feel confident to make a difference in someone’s life.
Do you have any client success stories you would like to share?
I was able to practice plant-based coaching with a new client during my last few weeks before completing the certification, and she has already felt a difference in just six weeks! She lost several inches from her waist, she sleeps better, eats better, and shares her learnings with her parents to help them manage chronic diseases. It is truly a blessing to be a part of someone’s lifestyle change and mindset shift!
What advice do you give others thinking about becoming certified?
If you are thinking about it, just do it! It was worth every penny and late night of study! I thoroughly enjoyed learning, and there were also many fun cooking activities and real-life exercises to apply learnings. I am more credible to provide coaching and support to individuals looking to change their lives to a healthier and happier one.