top of page

Health coach helps client stay on track

“You have to decide you want to be different.”


Partnership and perseverance make for a powerful team. So do retired MNPS art teacher, Barbara Johnson, and holistic health coach, Bobbi Nickel.


Finding the right accountability partner

Barbara connected with Bobbi after a series of health issues made losing weight critical for her. She was diagnosed with diabetes in 2005 and later was found to have liver damage as a result. She also had hip replacement surgery. Then, after contracting a serious sepsis infection when she was 61, she decided to retire.


“I just wanted to work on getting well,” Barbara says. “I needed a health coach someone I could answer to.”


Bobbi fit the bill perfectly. In addition to being a trained coach, she has a personal understanding of the experience since she went through it herself years ago when she successfully lost 110 pounds.


And, as Barbara notes, Bobbi “knows how to keep the weight off.”


Bobbi’s coaching philosophy

Bobbi starts by simply listening to her clients. She doesn’t pitch goals; instead, she helps them set their own and develops a plan for them to meet them.


“We also talk about the emotional things in their lives,” Bobbi says. “That helps some clients better respond to their triggers.”


Every client is different in what they need and how they respond.


“No two people are the same,” she says.


Barbara’s weight loss journey

Bobbie’s coaching helped Barbara lose 85 pounds.


As often is the case, the journey hasn’t always been easy.


“I’m a foodie,” she says. “I’m a volume-eater and a grazer.”


She is also an emotional eater whose setbacks have included depression, particularly after the loss of her mother.


“You bottom out,” she says.


When the weight began to creep back on, Barbara would double down and work even more closely with Bobbi to get back on track. They work together to determine what triggered the weight gain so they can make a plan to move forward.


“Barbara never gives up,” says Bobbi. “I’m very impressed with her perseverance over the years.”


Barbara believes having the right mindset is key. “You have to decide you want to be different,” she says.


She also credits Bobbi’s expertise and compassion. “The accountability is so important,” Barbara says of her coach. “She’s become a good friend.”


Looking forward to a bright future

Barbara’s successes over the past couple of years go beyond what the scale shows.


Her endocrinologist says that she seems to be “aging backwards” since her numbers are so much improved.


One unanticipated bonus was her husband losing 20 pounds, thanks to healthier food choices in the home.


The future looks bright. “I want to enjoy life for the next 20 years,” Barbara says now.


How you can work with Bobbi

Bobbi conducts all her Monday-Wednesday appointments virtually. That makes it convenient for teachers to fit coaching into their busy schedules. Best of all, the cost of her sessions is fully covered for MNPS employees.

Bobbi is accepting new clients. Call 615-259-8755 to schedule a virtual visit. 


Barbara Johnson

Retired MNPS art teacher

bottom of page