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About/Which(Fitness)Nurse R U?

 This is the official blog of  The purpose of this blog is that through my journey of finding viable venues to make money and promoting Certified Fitness Nurses™ to the public, I can help guide other nurses interested in fitness to get going on doing what they love working to heal the most reversable diseases (metabolic syndrome, pre-diabetes and inflammtion) through exercise and movement and nursing assessment.  Also to bring Certified Fitness Nurses™ to other health care professionals and the public.  But I can’t do it alone.  I need your help.  Don’t die with your dream and gift of what you have to offer inside of you.  I also want to exchange ideas, information, and resources with those nurses who want to make money as a Certified Fitness Nurse™.  I encourage you to make comments and express yourself.

There typically 3 types of nurses who are attracted to this site:

  1. Nurses (like me for many years), who work in the fitness industry as a personal trainer, group exercise instructor (bootcamps included) feeling an emptiness because you want to utilize your nursing training and skills, but the fitness industry doesn’t need or respect that part of you.  Quite frankly, I’ve said many times, you don’t have to be a nurse to teach Zumba classes.  The gym/club owners know this and more importantly the patrons/customers and potential customers know this.  So you will get paid what the market will bear which is what the competitive rate is for an exercise professional.  Per class maybe $25-$75.00 per class or $50-$150.00 per hour as a personal trainer or $9-$15.00 an hour working the gym floor.  Without getting into the differences of being paid per participant in a bootcamp and salaried fitness employees, you have to work a lot of hours, nights and weekends, many times working out with the group or person you are training.  Maybe this works for you if you’re under 35 y.o.  But I can’t teach 10-15 exercise classes a week over 50 y.o.  Nor do I want to.
  2. The second type of nurse who visits this site is someone who is working as a nurse, who is an exercise/fitness enthusiast and who is looking for another avenue in NURSING (good) to follow and make money in their passion for movement.  If this is you, maybe you are expecting a fitness nursing job to appear in Career Builder ads because that’s how you may have found your current/other nursing jobs.  The wheels of new nursing professions move very slowly.  Especially when there is self-doubt and an inability to see a vision of what a true Certified Fitness Nurse™ can be and do.  My vision of fitness nursing is a nurse who becomes certified to teach and coach people who were recommended by their physician or other healthcare professional to exercise for health reasons (waist reduction happens).  Not, a nurse working in fitness and then calling yourself a ‘fitness nurse’. (Nobody in fitness cares that you’re a nurse; if they did you would see it in your pocket)  This may be where we are right now, because that’s what currently available to you in the marketplace.  So you end up like nurse #1.  You just don’t need nursing skills to teach fitness in a gym setting.  So, you won’t get paid for them.
  3. The third type of nurse who visits this site is just curious.  You may have no intention of doing anything fitness wise with others, you just can’t stand what you’re doing now and want a change.  Which is o.k.  Part of change is exploration.
  4. Finally, the fourth type of nurse, is the nurse who can see my vision (maybe you’re a combo of nurse #1 and nurse #2) and is interested in exploring the role of a Certified Fitness Nurse™ and the many opportunities that exist for your creative ideas and ways you can start your own part-time practice and help reduce the 79 million pre-diabetics and/or 1 out of 6 people with metabolic syndrome to exercise in order to reduce insulin levels and improve independence over their lifetime.

Here’s my vision…

20% Fitness and 80% Nurse
Nurses (RNs and LPNs) combining their nursing license/training/skills + fitness certification (may change) + Coaching skills + CPR certification = Certified Fitness Nurse™!  You will work from a place of healthcare (through physician’s, clinics and/or hospital wellness centers and also through your own private and group coaching sessions)  NOT in typical gyms and clubs.
If you are working in a gym or club now…I’m not saying to quit.  Especially if you enjoy what you are doing.  What I am saying is that as long as you are seen as an aerobics instructor, a personal trainer, a yoga instructor, a fitness professional, etc., who ‘happens’ to be a nurse, you will continue to feel unfulfilled in what you are doing and is what brought you to this site.  You want more.  You DO have more to offer.
I’m not anti-gym or personal trainer.  I actually teach certification courses for personal trainers.  I believe that once someone is in a better health state and has learned to sustain their waist and improve their strength and confidence, then they should work with a personal trainer if they want to run a 5k or train for something.  What I do recognize in my 25+ years of doing both (fitness & nursing), is that you can’t change people’s perception of what exercise/fitness people do (biggest loser mentality) and what nurses do (caring for the sick and nursing back to health).

I have to formed our my own definition of the Certified Fitness Nurse™ that carries with it the nurse piece first; the fitness piece second. (You can see the CFN Standards of Practice HERE with more definitions.)  And we have to work with and in areas that already recognize the great nursing skills we have and what we bring to the table.  Many personal trainers in clubs that I’ve worked in think nurses only take blood pressures and give shots.   Because in their setting of the gym, and maybe their remembering their vaccinations as a child, that’s what they see nurses do.  The respect isn’t there.  The only time they cared I was a nurse was when somebody’s eyes rolled into the back of their head while they were on the treadmill and collapsed.  Those of you who want to continue to work in gyms/clubs I wish you well and maybe you are making great money… but again why are you on this site?

A Certified Fitness Nurse™ is a nurse who specializes in fitness by putting the care in fitness for those people who need a physician’s and/or APN’s recommendation to exercise.
Certified Fitness Nurse™ is the practice of promoting the benefits of exercise for blood sugar stability and improved hormone production towards fat-burning, life long waist reduction and reduction of all health-related numbers through supportive movement patterns and other integrative proven techniques, to people at risk for metabolic syndrome, pre-diabetes and inflammation.  The goal of the Certified Fitness Nurse™ is to empower the client to exercise on their own through self-efficacy and guided support.

I actually use the nursing process (Oh No!) when assessing my clients with my fitness nursing assessment.  No personal trainer would ever touch this.  We have to be different and make our own market place.  Which actually already exists.  We just have to let those markets know what we do.  Once we are recognized by physician’s, and other healthcare professionals, the public will grab on; then so will the gyms and clubs.  Then and only then can we ‘name our price’, once we have established ourselves as a crucial part of healing and preventing in the healthcare team.

Which nurse are you #1, #2, #3 or #4?
Leave a comment, please.

Yours in Fitness & Nursing,



21 responses »

  1. Sherry Longbottom, RN

    Hi Minky! I am so excited about your certification course and thrilled that it may be ready by fall of this year! I definitely consider myself a fitness nurse and can’t wait to get certified. What a blessing that you are working so diligently on this! You are absolutely right about being caught in between fitness and nursing. I have worked as a certified personal trainer and have always felt that having the RN degree really does help the client way more than a typical trainer with no healthcare background. I can’t say thanks enough for what you are doing and this incredible vision you are putting into motion. :O) Truly, Sherry

    • Help!! I am a long term personal trainer/ new nurse and am desperatley trying to figure out how to incorporate the two so I can make a living and pay my bills doing something I love-health advocate, trainer, nurse?? How??

  2. Ronald Miller

    Dear Colleague,

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    We hope you’ll consider utilizing our content in a guest blog or related capacity. I’m looking forward to hearing back from you.

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  3. Erika winter-stefferud

    Hello Minky,

    I am also very excited about the certification course. I love the health and fitness industry! I have worked as personal trainer for 2 years at local health club and the pressure to makes sales was the bottom line. Recently, was debating on this online program Master of Science Program in Exercise Science and Health Promotion at California University of Pennsylvania. However, the career options were limited as well. I am impressed with your vision as well. I cannot to be part this wonderful opportunity. Thank you

  4. I am so excited by your work, Minky! Your vision for fitness nursing has come at exactly the right time for me in my life! I have been a RN for 23 years, but before I got my BSN I got my Bachelors in exercise physiology back in the 80s and an ACSM certification. I turned to nursing as a way to learn more about health care and become more credible as an exercise/fitness expert. Over the years I lost track of that vision as I developed myself as a nurse. Recently, I’ve realized my passion for fitness again through my study of the Tao (via Dr. Wayne Dyer) and ChiRunning. I’ve suddenly realized that I am an excellent nurse with an education in fitness who has always wanted to combine the two.

    Then you showed up on my web search! I am so ready to rock with you and all the other pioneers out there who are interested in taking this step! Thank you for your transparency, your generosity and your willingness to share the way and the vision! I’m on board! I want to be a Fitness Nurse!

    Per your coaching, I am thinking about the kind of clients I want to work with, the outcomes I want to produce for them and where I’m going to find them. Once I get that more solid then I think the fear of having a conversation with healthcare professionals I want to work with will lessen. I am eager to continue to hear and read about your collaboration with the physician you’re working with!

    I am thrilled to have you as a consultant, a mentor and a creator of this group of nurses who see this as a possibility for their career!

    Looking forward to the call this Saturday and learning from you and everyone!


  5. Cheryl,
    As I mentioned to you before, you have so much to offer. Clarity builds confidence. I work on this daily. You have such a great concept, it’ll be more pleasant than you think. I’ll be honored to help you.
    Talk to you Sat. on the preview call. You and everyone registered with, will also get the recording too for later listening.
    Yours in Fitness & Nursing,

  6. dana raistrick

    Amazing idea! I’ve been in the fitness world for 12 years as a group ex. instructor and personal trainer. I am a fairly new nurse (LPN) about to finish my RN and just can’t stand the thought of not being able to incorporate fitness and preventive/holistic medicine into my practice…I stereotypically envision obese, smoking, stressed, sweet eating multitasker overworked nurses not taking care of themselves, attempting to care for others, in an environment that lends itself to nurses becoming hypocrites of the very principles they claim to support and uphold with their patients! I want to make a difference in peoples’ lives whereby they become more self-empowered through education and action, rather than depending on and considering responsible, the medical establishment and personnel for their ability to obtain optimum health and well-being. If I “crush and stuff” one more med to an ignorant (not stupid!) patient with no hope for a better future for nursing, I think I just might throw in the towel. I am fully on board with the idea of fitness nursing as a vocation and actually dreamt about this kind of combination before I discovered anything on the internet..I am so excited to see this! I also have a bachelor’s degree in psychology with a minor in sports medicine..never, until now, thinking I would ever fully take advantage of that education..I am happy to do anything to participate in the promotion of this new exciting field of nursing..If anyone wants to discuss/explore potential opportunities, please write to me!! Thanks for this site! Best of luck..I am now more motivated to pursue this in my hometown!!!

    • dana raistrick

      Also, I would love any information about the certification course..I am definately IN on that one!! Need any assistance? Let me know how I can help!

      • Hi Dana, I am seriously considering taking down the certification course information. We just had another set back with it. One of the problems I foresee is that there are not defined venues for a “Certified Fitness Nurse” to work. I keep trying tp explain to nurses that you can be a fitness nurse right now. If you have the qualified fitness credentials. Most of the public (including healthcare professionals) don’t know what a fitness nurse is. So getting a certification is nice, but one will know or even care what it means right now. I think it’s better to do the work necessary to get yourself out there promoting yourself as a fitness nurse, building clients, working with physicians, APN’s, other healthcare professionals first. Then the certification will be the icing on the cake. (as they say)
        I’ll keep everyone up to date about the certification course; but again I must stress to you…don’t wait for this course to get started. Become the fitness nurse trusted authority in your hometown! I offer other classes and courses (free and fee) to help you, if you need and want it. Thank you for your post. I’ll keep you in mind for future endeavors.
        I heard one physician eloquently put what medicine is for, “Medicine is needed for temporary relief and to help your body heal right now. But you will never find true health through pharmacology; real vitality and long-standing health has to start and stay between the ears”. Yours in Fitness & Nursing, Lori

  7. dana raistrick

    Thankyou Lori for your reply..I see exactly what you are talking about in terms of society understanding exactly what a Fitness Nurse is. I suppose I feel in some ways I need a “credential” to practice in this unique way to be taken seriously, but then again, if I am seen as a professional now, why would anyone question integrity?

  8. Hi Lori.
    I love what your’e doing. It resonates within me beause becoming a Fitness Nurse is exactly what I want to do. As a matter of fact, I first learned about you because I researched the titles “Fitness Nurse” and “Health and Wellness Nurse.” I appreciate the questions you ask to get us thinking about what type of fitness nurse we want to be, what type of people do we want to work with and what is the illness we want to target to improve the lives of others. Looking at your blog and answering these questions led me to the conclusion that I want to be a Fitness Nurse who specializes in weight reduction and the elimination of obesity and health disparities (I have a masters degree in multicultural health care studies). Through my online search for what I seek to accomplish, I also found a program that has a certificated program in Food Psychology. I think becoming certified as a Fitness Nurse and a Food Psychologist might fit right in with the path I’m on. What are your thoughts on this?

    • Well Andraya,
      That is what I do. I am a fitness nurse and certified food psychology coach. But I call myself a counselor. The food psychology link in on my blog. The Institute for the Psychology of Eating (IPE)
      with Marc David. I have also featured his book in the Fitness Nursing e-newsletter. “The Slow Down Diet”. He is fantastic. Unless you are looking at another course. I am developing a Certified Fitness Nurse course that may require this component, so you’d be ahead of the game if you get certified in food psychology now. I think it’s great that you want to do this. It works for me.

  9. Lori, my name is Tyler Lafleur and I am a RN and a Health Fitness Specialist. I am looking to start my business here is Louisiana. I have my business in place and I am ready to start getting involved with the public and changing lives. Your website is very motivating. I sent you an email a while back but never got a response. Just checking in to see if the email was still correct. Hope to hear from you soon.


  10. Heather Cutrona

    Hi Lori,
    I am so inspired by your work!!! You have done so much of what I strive to do in my years to come as a nurse and I admire your work so much!!!! I have shared your work with a few family members in the medical professional (ie dialysis and MD’s who suggest that I take your courses and pursue my goals)
    I am really looking forward to following what you have to offer as you seem so knowledgable and a great person to teach other nurses passionate about such an important aspect of healthcare I feel is being neglected which could save lives, and prevent so much of the serious illness and premature death we see today. LOVE LOVE LOVE what you are doing. I am going to order step 1 and start contacting you to work towards my goals. Thanks again for keeping in touch. To answer your question above I think I am a combo of #1, 2 and a little of 3 because I already know I want a change and I already know this is my passion. I already knew and learned google fitness nurse and you find NOTHING. But utilizing our knowledge to create the best outcome for our patients is different then ZUMBA. I love education. I love diet, fitness, but I agree our knowledge is priceless. It goes beyond the gym.
    Look forward to more and more… so exciting.
    Heather Jane Cutrona

  11. Hi Lori. I’m a type 2
    and can hardly wait to start your certification program. I am curious about Heather’s comment regarding ordering “step one.” Does this mean there are parts of the program that are available to order already? Thanks for your feedback regarding the food psychology program. I’ll do as you suggested unless something has changed regarding enrolling in your program.

    • Hi Andraya,
      Thank you for your enthusiasm! I think Heather is talking about the steps on the website link “How to Start fitness nursing”. The food psychology program is great and is very helpful. We know that weightloss and lifestyle change begins between the ears. Please listen to the audio that is posted on the website, the Certified Fitness Nurse link. It’s long; but it’s good and you can download it to your Mp3 player to listen to at your leisure. Get excited because I am getting pumped to help those of you who get what I am trying to do… which is to help as many people as possible turn around metabolic disease and inflammation through exercise, real food nutrition and nursing assessment skills, by way of other, soon to be Certified Fitness Nurses, like you. Thank you for your help! You will be rewarded! Lori

  12. Hi Minky,
    I just finished listening to your audio where you responded to the survey questions that you sent out. I was one of the 57 out of 1000 responses so I was very curious to hear you talk about it. You sound like you are refining your definition with what a CFN is and I think that’s a good thing. Since I discovered you a few months ago, I have been working to define who I am as a FN. The more I get into it the more I realize that your approach with respect to metabolic disease using diet and exercise is excellent and will clearly distinguish how the nurse is different from the Personal Trainer. Although I have excellent academic credentials in terms of nursing and fitness, I have also realized that my education and experience around diet and food relative to metabolic syndromes, ie. Prediabetic and inflammatory conditions, is lacking. Over the last several months, I have taken on one client at a time and am recognizing these syndromes, but feel my ability to counsel and guide is limited.
    Anyway, I am looking forward to more from you. I think YOU ARE ON THE RIGHT PATH with what a FN is. As I have written to you earlier, I am committed to developing this specialty with you. Thank you for leading the effort! Please let me know how I can help (if at all.)
    How is your work going with the physician you recently started working with?

  13. I am a Texas nurse and wondered if all nurses, nationwide, are able to become a CFN through your upcoming certification program? Will the program be internet and computer based or is it required that we attend in person for testing and assignments?

    • Hi Nicole,
      The course will be computer-internet-based, but you will have to go to Naples,FL for practical and written testing. And all nurses nationwide would be eligible. Thank you for your questions. Lori


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