Want to Make Money as a Coach?
The #1 question we hear from people who are considering a career as a nutrition coach is, “But, how am I going to make money?”
And, we get it! You have bills to pay, a family to feed, and you’re craving the financial freedom you deserve.
Here at ITN, the success of our students fuels everything we do and teach. We want our students to be successful because that means that we are successful. So, we teach you exactly how to make money as a coach.
How? Well, CEO and Founder Cynthia Garcia has gone through every step of the process already, and now she’s teaching you the tips, tricks, and advice that took her years to learn.
A step-by-step breakdown
What started out as Cynthia’s own health and wellness journey turned into certifying over 30,000 coaches with her signature ITN methodology, mainstream media coverage, book deals, and more.
There’s no such thing as an overnight success, though.
Cynthia shares how she started off by charging $300/hour for private coaching and eventually offered group coaching at $97/month in order to reach more clients and avoid burnout.
In this episode, she walks you through a detailed breakdown — including number of clients, hourly rate, time off, and more — to show you how to make money in the best, most sustainable way.
No, you don’t just have to coach 1:1!
Nowadays, the nutrition coaching space is constantly changing, and there are so many opportunities to break through in creative ways.
Cynthia provides tools and tricks for how to make a name for yourself as a nutrition coach and make the salary of your dreams.
However, it doesn’t stop with just coaching clients 1:1! If you have a passion for health and wellness but want to explore other options — like starting a podcast, writing a book, hosting retreats — no worries! We cover that in the episode, too.
Ready to take the next steps toward becoming a Nutrition Coach? Download our detailed Course Catalog
Want to hear more from the ITN student featured in this episode? Connect with Sarah!
Read the transcript for this episode:
[00:00:00] Cynthia Garcia: So I set out to heal my own body after trying everything offered by everyone else and having nothing work, I thought, okay, I’m going to figure this out on my own. And that’s exactly what I did.
Welcome back to the Transformational Nutrition Podcast, the podcast that is redefining nutrition as anything that eats you physically, mentally and spiritually. I’m your host. Cynthia Garcia, the founder and CEO of the Institute of Transformational Nutrition.
And in today’s episode, I am going to be sharing with you exactly how you can make money as a nutrition coach. And I’m going to be diving deep into numbers. So you don’t want to miss this. Okay. So most of us become coaches because we’re looking to help others.
We’ve learned something along the way, usually from our own health struggles. And now we want to share all of those things to make someone else’s life a little bit easier along the way. And ultimately you can do that as a coach and make a great living and also, you know, make your own schedule work when you want.
And also have the clients that you. To have now I, if you know anything about me or you follow me now, you know that my life, these days is pretty darn good. I am really fortunate to have worked with, you know, a ton of celebrities. I’ve worked on TV shows. I’ve written books that have sold over a million copies, and I’ve got to be on some really great platforms to get my message out to the world.
But if you also know me, you know, that it certainly was not always like this. I grew up in extreme poverty and a pretty wild environment. And I won’t go into all the details of this. If you want to hear more about kind of my upbringing, you can go back to episode one where I talk to. How I essentially went from homeless to becoming a successful coach and everything in between.
So this is not about that story necessarily. It’s just about looking at how exactly I made money and then how you can do that as well and how you can set up a successful coaching business. Because the thing is, if I can do it, anyone can, right. Because I had been through this again, intense upbringing. I left home.
I went as far away as I could get without leaving the country. That’s a true story. But unfortunately, when I got to Los Angeles, which is as far as I could get without leaving the country, I realized that no matter where I went. There I was. And that reality, it just hit me like a ton of bricks, man. I thought finally, I was escaping this, this place.
I was escaping this town. I was escaping my past and I could start a new, unfortunately. And as you may have already known it doesn’t exactly work that way. So I set out to heal my own body after trying everything offered by everyone else and having nothing work, I thought, okay, I’m going to figure this out on my own.
And that’s exactly what I did. I went back to school as well, and I started diving into nutrition, specifically clinical nutrition. And I thought I’m going to figure this out because if I can figure this out, I can help other people figure it out and they won’t have to struggle. Like I did. I was so excited about dedicating my life to doing this work.
And so I did that once I finished, I started working with a few clients. They started getting results. I started getting results because remember I’m still not in a great place. I’m still healing my own body and my own mind, but I moved from. Working with these clients. And it was one day that I realized something was missing.
You know, I could tell them what to eat, what not to eat. And sure. That was great. And sure they were making some progress, but their core habits hadn’t changed. I kept noticing that they knew what to do. They just wouldn’t do it. And I’ve told this story before, and if you’ve heard it either fast forward or listen again, I’ll keep it really brief.
I didn’t really understand what was going on until I worked with a client of mine, Makala, Peggy and Peggy came in one day as she did every week with her food journal that showed what she had eaten for the week. Now we’d planned it out the week before, so I kind of knew what to expect, but just like the week before and the week before that.
She brought in her food journal and on the food journal, she had the food she was supposed to eat. And then she had Snickers bars. I, that was her candy bar of choice. And she had caught me this day on just the right day. You know how sometimes people do that. And you’re just like, not today, Linda, not today.
Well, Peggy caught me on a daily. And I said to her, I remember saying to her very clearly. I said, listen, I don’t think I can help you every day. You come in and we talk about what you’ll do and what you’ll eat. And every week you go away and you come back and you’ve eaten candy bars. I don’t understand. I don’t know what’s going on.
I don’t think I can help you. All I can figure out at this point is it feels like you’re wasting your money and. And then this woman did something to me that no one has done before, after she stood up and she yelled at me and she very clearly told me why she did what she did. And it changed my life and the life of so many people from.
Because what she told me. And again, I’ll keep this really brief. I’ve talked about this before. In fact, there’s a whole video series on our email@example.com slash dream career. If you want to hear the whole story of how I got from where I started to where I am now and how you can do the same, you can go there and check that out.
But back to here. And now when I worked with Peggy, she said to me that her parents had divorced when she was. And her mother had started dating someone new right after that. And this new boyfriend didn’t like children. So when the boyfriend was planning to come over and her mom would take her to blockbuster, remember those days to rent movies, and she would pick up some movies on the way out, they would stop by her favorite part of the store, which was the candy section.
And she would pick out her favorite candy bars, which were. You guessed it, Snickers bars they’d go home. The mom would walk her up to her room where she’d be surrounded by Snickers bars and popcorn and some other snacks. And she had all these movies and her mom would ask her to stay put until the boyfriend was gone.
And that’s what she did surrounded by these candy and the movies and herself, and the boyfriend was gone. Then my client, Peggy could come back downstairs and be with her mother. So she had acquainted these snicker bars to feeling loved and needed and validated. And she said to me that day, they’re the only friends I have.
And I won’t let you take them away from. Now that has shifted things a huge way for me. And I realized that nutrition was about so much more than what’s on our plate. So that’s when I started to create this new model of nutrition that I ultimately called transformation on nutrition, which took into account, not just the physical aspects of food and health, but also our mental health and our past trauma, mental nutrition.
Right. And then from there, We didn’t stop. I didn’t stop. I thought, okay. But there’s still the connection part. And I called that spiritual nutrition. Right. It’s what we feed ourselves in terms of our connection to others, connection to ourselves, connection to our planet, connection to something higher. If you see.
Choose. And these three areas are transformational nutrition. So these are the three things that I ended up putting into this model of transformation, nutrition, and that’s how I stood out. And that’s how I started to make great.
Okay. Let’s pause for a moment and hear from one of our certified transformational nutrition coaches, Sarah joy. You’re going to discover how Sarah’s background and her life experiences set her on track to becoming a coach.
[00:08:34] Sarah Joy: My personal health journey started after the 2008 crash. At that time, I was newly married with a toddler and thanks to the crash. Me and my then husbands lives completely fell apart. I had a sudden onset of symptoms about six months after, and I was diagnosed with hypothyroidism in 2008. My health slowly declined yearly after that, as my conditions worse.
And I was also diagnosed with Hashimoto’s thyroiditis. I was overtaken by anxiety and panic attacks. I had severe fatigue and about 25 other symptoms. Thanks to all of these symptoms. I could no longer work drive, go to the grocery store, play with my kids. And honestly, I can barely take care of my family.
I basically exhausted both medical systems, Eastern and Western after battling for about eight long years, I completely gave up hope and I decided to let my illness kill me, but the universe had a different plan. My brother was released from 10 years in prison in August of 2016. He had a hard time reacclimating to society.
He also struggled with his health daily, especially low energy. He ended up turning to drugs to cope. And after a run in with the Sheriff’s department, three days before his 39th birthday, he was shot 14 times and ended up dying in an SUV and a ditch on the side of the road. This tragedy changed my life literally forever.
I fortunately. Use this tragedy to propel me into a better life. And it ended up reviving my hope and renewing my fight to live again because it showed me how short life really is. That’s when I decided to move out file for divorce and enroll in school for.
[00:10:46] Cynthia Garcia: So what happened was, as I started developing this system, people kept coming to me. They started to see that I was getting booked up on clients. I couldn’t take any more clients. I was booked months in advance and I thought, okay. I am just not charging enough. So I raised my prices and the people still didn’t go.
They kept referring other people, in fact. And so I started to talk to other coaches who would reach out to me and say, how are you making money? How are you doing this? And I started teaching them. I started sharing this model of transformational nutrition because the way it works is it removes all the guesswork from coaching.
When a client comes to you, you have an intake form, a health assessment intake form that they complete. And on that form, they note down what’s going on, including their symptoms, right on the back end of that. You, as a transformational nutrition coach have something that we call here at ITN as symptoms decoder.
So you can take what the client has provided you. And based on the answers they’ve given on the back end, this symptoms decoder will translate. Essentially what was going on with your client? Not just that it creates done for you protocols for not just the physical side of things, you know, supplements foods, which diets might be best for them, but it also gives you protocols for the mental nutrition side of things and spirit.
Nutrition. And again, it’s all very detailed and it’s all completely personalized to your client, right? We look at what else was going on at the time their symptoms started and we work through every major system of the body using something. We call a health ladder to get clients results. For good. So this is exactly what I was doing and it removed all the guesswork from coaching it’s based in over 1400 studies.
And I started sharing this with other coaches. I realized really quickly that I needed a bigger platform. So I built ITN and the rest is history, right? So that was the unique model that I used to be able to get clients results. And then they would refer me to other friends, other family members, other coworkers, because what I have.
Worked. So that’s how I started. So let’s get back into pricing and exactly how you can make money. So I want to break this down for you because one of the most common questions we get asked by new coaches is how do I know what to charge for my one-on-one coaching? I get it. It’s tricky. You don’t want to overcharge and you definitely don’t want to undercharge.
As a matter of fact, when you undercharged thinking, oh, if my rates are cheaper and more people will work with me, that doesn’t work because they just think you’re not very good at what you do. So for me, I’m going to walk you through exactly what I charged in my first year of coaching to go from having $388 a number that I will never forget in the bank to just over 130, 6,000 in one year.
So this is how I did it. Okay. When I first started, remember I told you I was still going through my own health struggle. Like I still hadn’t completely transformed. I was still doing the same work that my clients were doing, and it was wasn’t until I discovered this method of transformational nutrition, that everything really started to shift the fog lifted.
Everything completely transformed. And so what I was doing was not wanting to risk my health again. And so I decided that I would start coaching just two clients a day and I would charge $300 for an hour session. Now I live in Los Angeles. It was a larger city and what I did worked right. And I had a ton of clients.
So I knew I could charge a premium rate. So I started charging this. I was booked solid that that came out to $3,000 a week. Or just over 130, $6,000 a year and I took seven weeks off. So if you run the numbers, you’ll see, I could’ve made more, but I didn’t want to stress myself out. I didn’t want to overtax my body.
I didn’t want to end up unhealthy. So two clients a day, $300 an hour. And I did it in my own time. So I could work on my own health and wellbeing first as I got better and better. And I was feeling really good. My energy came back. My health was completely transformed. I decided that I would take on two more clients a day.
So I just doubled my client list. And so instead of making $3,000 a week, I was now making $6,000 a week, which came out to $287,000 a year. And I still took six weeks off that year. Remember I was charging $300 for an. Session now, once I got to that point, I realized that I couldn’t exactly scale that because there was only one of me and there’s only so many hours in the day.
So what I decided to do was to create a group coaching program. So that way people could come in for way less than what it would cost them to work with me. One-on-one because I really wanted to help more people. I wanted to spread this message of transformational nutrition. And so I thought, okay, I’ll charge $97 a month.
I did. And we grew that to where, when we reached a hundred members, we were making $9,700 a month or $116,400 a year. Right. And then I coupled that with my one-on-one sessions, which eventually I stopped doing so many, I’ve actually cut those back so that I could focus on growing my coaching group because that I could scale.
So that’s exactly how I made money and that’s my exact breakdown. So you can take a look at that and you can also see this in our show notes. If these numbers are a little bit too hard for you to imagine in your head, you can check out the show notes. I’ll include everything for you.
All right. Let’s check back in with Sarah. Last time we heard from her, she had just decided to change her life completely. So now let’s find out how and why she decided to enroll at the Institute of transformational nutrition. Um,
[00:17:00] Sarah Joy: when I signed up for college in 2017, I knew I wanted to do something in the health industry, but I wasn’t sure what I thought I wanted to become a registered dietician. But after one look at the food guide pyramid and the government nutrition website, I knew that was not the way I wanted to teach people to eat my counselors.
And I looked all over. The nation for colleges. And I didn’t like any of the health programs that I saw. So one day I was making lunch and I put on the model health show and I heard Cynthia and she started sharing her story about ITN and why and how she started ITN. And I was just lit up inside. It was like angels started singing.
And it was my answer. I knew it. And there was just no doubt. And I was just filled with so much happiness and I knew that joining ITN was exactly what I needed to do next. So I signed up immediately and because ITN is accredited, my counselors were able to add it to my transfer and graduation plan. I finished out two more semesters.
At regular college while starting the CTN see chorus at the same time. And I had a duel graduation December of 2019. And honestly it was the best month of my life.
[00:18:33] Cynthia Garcia: Now let’s go over maybe a different version of that. So you can find something that works for you and for your schedule. So again, I was taking two clients a day at $300 an hour for $3,000 a week income. Now you might say, okay, well, Charge $300 starting out. I’d feel comfortable doing that. You can by the way, but if you don’t feel comfortable, okay, let’s say you start out charging just $150 and you also decide to do two clients a day.
Your weekly income is $1,500 a week or 60,000. A year. Now this includes taking off 12 weeks during the year because listen, one of the reasons you became a coach was that you wanted to take back control of your life, right? You want it to find more time in the day. You wanted to be able to do things on your terms.
You want it to be able to go to the things in your life. That were important to you and show up for people that were important to you. So that requires taking time off. So I set aside 12 weeks in these examples, just to show you that you can take off three months during the year and still make a great income.
Let’s say you keep the same coaching rate of one 50 an hour, but you decide to take on three clients a day that brings your weekly income to 20 to 50 or $90,000. Let’s say you think I can handle four clients a day and I’m still going to keep this rate of $150. Well, that brings your income back to 3000 a week, right?
So you can run the numbers here. Let’s say you don’t want to charge 150, but you want to charge $200. It’s not quite 300, but you want to charge a little more than one 50 at two clients a day with an hourly coaching rate of $200. Your weekly income is $2,000. Your yearly income is 80,000. Okay. If you decide to move that up to three clients a day at that $200 coaching rate, that’s $3,000 a week or $1,200 a year.
And that is three months off during the year. Right? So you can run those numbers for yourself or just check them out in our show. Let me talk to you now about the membership. I love group coaching programs. They are so incredibly helpful. The community is absolutely phenomenal, and this is something that you can keep growing without having to scale yourself or find more hours in the day.
So I gave you the example of a hundred monthly members at a membership rate of $97 a month, which is far less. Then it would cost to work with you. Plus they get a community and teachings every single month and they get to ask you questions live, which is a pretty good deal that brings your monthly income to 9,700 or that 1 16 400 that I shared with you per year.
So $116,400, but let’s say you start out with just 20 members. 20 members a month at the $97 brings your monthly income just for your group coaching program that this doesn’t include. One-on-one coaching. It’s just your group program to 1940. So $1,940 or $23,280 a year. That’s not bad seeing as how you showed up and taught for a couple of hours that month.
Right? If you bring that to 40 members at that $97 membership rate, that’s 38 80 a month or $46,560 a year. Again, just for showing up a few hours. Every month, it’s not a bad deal. And then you compare that with your one-on-one clients. So we have a whole chart for you that outlines this over in our show firstname.lastname@example.org slash episode 0 2 4.
If you want to go and check that out, you can see how we calculate this and then plug in your own numbers and see what you come up with. But this is exactly how you can make great money. Well also taking three months off as a transformational nutrition coach. Now let’s say you say, gosh, Cynthia, I didn’t really want to do one-on-one coaching or, you know, I’ve done enough.
One-on-one coaching now. I want to do something else. And that’s great. You know, a lot of coaches who graduate from ITN do one-on-one coaching, but a lot of them don’t, or they’ll start coaching clients. One-on-one. But then they’ll want the freedom to scale their business, like in that monthly membership without doing the one-on-one coaching.
Right. And so they’ll choose something different. And at some point you just don’t have the bandwidth to keep adding clients. I didn’t write. I had people booked out months, month in advance. There’s only so many hours in the day and there’s other options other than one-on-one coaching or group coaching.
For example, some of our it and graduates have gone on to do things like write books or host podcasts, start their own YouTube show. They host retreats, they host events online and offline. They become speakers and get paid for that. They work in corporate wellness, they create their own products and programs.
They start wellness communities and their own communities. And so much more, I mean, The sky is the limit. And we talk about this on our website. If you’d like to see some other examples of what you can do now, the most important thing is to choose the career. That feels right for you right now, with that being said, you might be thinking, huh?
I’d like to host a live event, but what would that look like? How does this work, or maybe I’d like to do this other thing. How does that work? Well, the great news is I put together. Email course, that’s devoted to three simple ways that you can make money as a transformation or nutrition coach without getting burnout in the process or spending all of your time on social media.
It really is as simple as. So, if you’re thinking about becoming a nutrition coach, or if you’re already a coach, but you’re just not quite making the money that you want, and you want to understand the logistics of exactly how these numbers break down, then join this free email course. Email and it’s sent to you every single day for just a handful of days.
And it’ll walk you through step by step by step the exact numbers that you can use to design your own five, six, and beyond figure coaching business. Right? So again, to access the course, all you need to do is go to transformation or nutrition.com/free money. All right. So transformation or nutrition.com/free mini course.
And listen, if you are interested in becoming a coach, this is a great time to become a student at ITN because we’ve just launched our new limited time series called our success series. With the challenges that gosh, all of us have faced over the past few years, we have doubled down on our mission of certifying successful transformation on nutrition coaches.
Your success is our success. So for a limited time, we’re offering a powerful new masterclass. When you enroll at ITN, that’s designed to help you make great money and enjoy a new career. Fast, you can see all of the details on our email@example.com slash and roll. All right, let’s bring Sarah back one last time to share what her life looks like now as a transformational nutrition coach, you’ll find out how she got past her fear of starting and what her biggest moments of six tests have been since launching her coaching business.
[00:26:07] Sarah Joy: now I coach women also suffering from thyroid conditions to help them restore their health, happiness, and lives in my 90 day program energy for life. And. I was very nervous. I’ve never been a business owner. I, you know, I, I’ve never been a CEO and I didn’t know, I really am still learning how to run a business all the way.
And you can’t let that stop you. If you have a passion for helping changing people’s lives. Serving them. If this is your calling, you can’t hold yourself back. You got to get out of your own way and you have to do the uncomfortable things. Your strength is really on the other side of your affairs. I never knew that becoming a CEO and coach was going to set me on my own path of personal discovery.
Since I launched coach Sarah joy in March of 2020. This path of overcoming my insecurities, imposter syndrome, money, lack and more has been the greatest blessing in my life and my clients. My biggest moment of success up until this point has been signing three new clients in one week or having a $9,000 a week.
My second biggest moment of success. It was always having the pleasure of watching my clients get better and their symptoms subside. There was nothing better to me than helping people restore their glow. Honestly, that has been praised.
[00:28:04] Cynthia Garcia: All right. Look, that was a lot to cover. Uh, no, but I really wanted you to be able to step out with confidence after this episode, knowing that you can start a successful coaching career. Listen, if I did it, I came from nothing except trauma and poverty. I knew no one who had ever. Rent a business. And I just started in a little studio apartment in Hollywood, California with an outdated Dell computer.
Right? Like you don’t have to have much and I walk you through step-by-step how to do this. But the fact is if I can do. You can do it too. There’s a lot of numbers and a lot of resources this week. So I know you’re going to want to dive deeper on this, to do that. Go see all of the show firstname.lastname@example.org slash episode zero to four.
- So transformation on nutrition.com/episode zero. For, and there you’ll find the links to this free course. You’ll see charts with all of these numbers. So you can start to design your own business and you’ll be able to also see this new success series that we’ve launched if you’re interested in becoming a coach at ITM.
So I hope this serves you. I hope this gives you clarity on how you can make a great income while truly having a meaningful career. Thanks so much. For tuning in again, check out the show notes and I’ll see you right back here again next week for a brand.