Far Beyond Food is a Holistic Health Coaching company located in Chicago. Here's what to expect: You will not feel rushed or hurried in any way as I value your time. My goal is always focused on how we can effectively and efficiently move you toward your goals in the best ways possible. We will discuss your goals, about creating a sustainable plan and how to get you there. I will also explain the program options available and you can decide which would be the best fit.
I started working with Matt on the recommendation of a friend because I had recently gained some weight and just couldn't get rid of it. I thought I was in mostly in shape, knew how to work out and knew how to eat - I just had a few extra pounds on me. In our first six weeks Matt changed how I thought about everything: food, energy, sleep, cardio. I had been making basic mistakes my whole life. Matt taught me HIIT workouts that let me work out better and faster and was never judgmental when I couldn't do an exercise. He taught me nutrition lessons and emailed me articles that backed up what he told me during workouts. While I was initially skeptical of some of his nutrition information after a few weeks I began to notice everything he said would happen actually did. I've worked with Matt weekly now for two years and I love our workouts. I'm in the best shape of my life now. He listens to me when I want to try new things, pushes me when I try to wimp out and keeps emailing me articles. He's a great resource and motivator and I would recommend him to anyone!
Matt started to help me after I had my third child and was at a stand still with my weight. I saw great results getting those last baby pounds off after just a few months of meeting with him. When I became pregnant again with my fourth child I had lots of doubts about getting back into shape again. We discussed the importance of certain types of exercise specifically H.I.I.T and he assured me I could get back into shape after the baby arrived. I started meeting with Matt again after my baby was 6 weeks old. We discussed food, sleep and a workout plan. He was great at listening to me, setting goals and creating a plan that would fit my schedule. I was able to power through the baby blues much better because I knew Matt would make sure I was doing OK on my workouts. I have lost 35 pounds and fit back into my "pre-kid" clothes. The great thing I learned about working out is how important and easy the basics are. After that there is tons of flexibility; I can do them at home or the gym. Additionally, he made sure I was eating whole foods, drinking plenty of water and getting plenty of rest. Working with Matt has made a huge difference in my life. I feel strong physically but even more than that, it has been so good for me mentally.
Simply put, Matt's health coaching and exercise guidance has changed my life. A recent knee injury, turning fifty, and a diagnosis of arthritis became a wake up call to make some life changes. I was terrified and extremely intimidated of joining a gym, but I did and started working with Matt. He immediately put me at ease, listened to my story and helped me identify my goals. I was ready and committed but was dreading the hours of workouts, but Matt has showed me how to work out effectively and efficiently with maximum results - a program completed tailored to my needs. What I appreciate the most is the additional information he readily provides and the knowledge that he shares to help me understand the why and purpose behind the program he has created for me. Matt is supportive and encouraging and makes me feel like I'm his only client. I am down 25 pounds, 6 inches off my waist and have never felt better physically and mentally - and younger! This is a great new journey, a new way of life, and thanks to Matt, an even better future ahead.
Working with Matt has put me back on track with my fitness goals. We didn't just focus on exercise but whole body wellness. He took a genuine interest in my life. He was able to tailor wellness suggestions, and even help me complete this whole process with time constraints. He has been a great motivator and fun to work with!
I started working with Matt several months ago after he convinced me that meeting with him as a health coach would be helpful for me in achieving my fitness goals. I was highly skeptical that he would actually be able to provide me with any new information or advice that I hadn't already read or heard about. Matt challenged me to change the way I thought about both food and exercise and helped me to really work out smarter rather than harder (or longer). I have greatly reduced the hours spent at the gym each week, while also greatly increasing my strength and achieving ALL of my fitness goals. While meeting with Matt I also completely changed the way I eat and his motivation each week helped to keep me on track. Matt pushed me in my workouts and encouraged me in my eating habits. I'm very grateful that he convinced me to schedule my first appointment with him.
At 58 years old, I decided that I was tired of having my clothes not fit anymore and I was just uncomfortable with my weight. I was getting concerned about getting older and not being healthy. I started meeting with Matt at the YMCA, and he helped me learn how to eat right without a lot of extra work and effort on my part. He taught me exercises that really work and could easily fit into an already committed and busy life. I’ve always had a very hard time creating new, healthy habits. But, I’ve learned a lot about foods, how to eat the right things, and how to exercise just a few times a week in ways that really produce results. Matt told me not to worry about the weight, just do what he was teaching about foods, exercise and some simple daily habits. I did, and in just 2 months I lost 3 & ½ inches overall (… and also did lose 7 pounds). My clothes fit again and it’s nice to have my wardrobe back! Matt is sincerely concerned about helping people find simple ways to be healthy so they can live with it. He is incredibly knowledgeable and committed, and I’m grateful to have benefitted! I know I can keep this up – it’s not hard, it’s not time consuming, and it works! Thank you, Matt!
I have struggled my whole life with weight control. In 2012, I was approaching obesity at 240 pounds. At that point, I thought I knew what I needed to do, just lacked the discipline to do it. My world changed when I met Matt Kirsch. What Matt taught me was the key to better health is understanding foods, ingredients and making better choices, I was excited, I did not have to starve myself, just be a better consumer. Simple changes made a huge difference. We began to use organics, better choices in bread, pasta cooking oils, etc. In a year, I lost 40 pounds and feel much healthier.
Matt has been my coach since June after not having exercised to any extent in my 72+ years. He was very understanding and directed me accordingly, making me feel at ease. He started by getting to know me and finding my strengths and weaknesses and deciding on how to lead me to what could be my accomplishments. It has truly been a very rewarding experience and I am not looking at it as work, but mostly enjoyment and personal accomplishment.
I was a little unsure initially, not knowing what a "wellness coach" would be but it turned out to be a great experience. I liked that I had someone in my corner to not only give me encouragement, but someone who is knowledgeable about nutrition, the human body and what works for each person. I never hesitated to ask Matt something that I didn't know or was unsure of, he would take the time to explain it and pull something up on a website if I needed more clarification. I appreciate his knowledge and his interest in seeing others eat healthier and become more educated about what our bodies need to function at their best. I will continue to seek his advice and work with him in the future as I learn to make better choices to maintain a healthier way of living.
My family and I walked into the gym in the Fall of 2014. It was time for a change. I have had an issue with weight and body image since my teens. At the time I was three years or so free from cigarettes but in the interim, I gave myself a free license to eat whatever I want. Well, I went overboard with that I put on more weight than ever. I easily topped 300 lbs for the first time in my life. I was unhappy with my appearance and the way I was feeling about myself. I was about to turn 45 and it was time to do something about it - like it or not. So began the perfect storm: I wanted to do something to change. I found the right place to start that change. I found the right guy to help guide me to the change. Finally, I had to do the work. After a month or so of getting use to the idea of "coming to the gym and working out" (yuck), I had an appointment to meet with Matt. Being in a willing mindset to collect the information from him, he changed my whole idea, my whole approach to getting into shape. He introduced me to interval training, better eating habits, and an overall new philosophy on this lifestyle change of mine. He worked with me, listened, suggested, and challenged me to keep going. He was on my team. He's answered my questions, provided additional information, and helped me believe that every bit of work I put in counts. See this process that I'm working on has no timetable, no due date. But it's getting done in the most effective way I've ever experienced. I've gone from three days a week to doing something at the gym everyday for oh, 20-30 (sometimes just 12) minutes. And I enjoy it. I've seen the results. Others have seen the results. What's started with motivation has turned into dedication and that's all because of every single element of the perfect storm. I've now lost just over 100 lbs and I can't thank Matt enough for helping me change my life.
I am a survivor of war, foster care and several divorces. As a result, I have suffered from depression for decades and had lots of counseling. But of all of the people I have worked with over the course of 60 years, Matt has been the most helpful by far -- and in record time. He is extremely knowledgeable. He advised me about my diet, helped me overcome my sleep disorder and improved my self esteem. Matt always celebrates my successes and there never is any criticism! He is always encouraging. I am so very grateful for all the time he has devoted to helping me
For many people, someone truly listening to them is something they don’t experience in their day-to-day lives. It is rare to find a place free of judgment where one can openly discuss their health, goals and frustrations with someone who is actually paying attention. That someone who is fully present, looking them in the eyes, listening attentively, not waiting until they finish before they give them a lecture about what they “should be doing”. Doctors are there for us, but with more patients and less time, many people are lucky if they just get eye contact.
After years of coaching, I realize that most people know what they need to do, they just have big thick walls of limiting beliefs about themselves and their abilities in front of them. My job is to stand side by side with you in front of your wall and hand you the sledgehammer. As we talk, I point out weak points in the wall, and where it might be best to hit. Most coaches know you can’t force someone to change and that all change starts in the mind. My job is never to teach you to eat broccoli, you learned that a long time ago. My work involves listening to why you don’t “eat broccoli” or don’t want to, to ask the right questions at the right times so you can change your outlook. Not force feed you and expect you to like it. There is a massive amount of health and wellness information out there today, yet we are still seeing rising obesity rates. People are still jumping on and off diets only to go back to what they know during stressful times. So, is it any wonder why people feel overwhelmed, over stressed, and hopeless?
We are all dynamic and different based on gender, age, activity level, experience, stress levels and nutritional needs yet many practitioners today are dead set on treating us as if we are the same. When you work with me you will always receive 100% of my attention. This, I can promise you. You will never be just a number. I will spend the time to make sure you accomplish your goals so you can live a healthier and happier life.
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