While studying modern dance at The Ailey School, 2007 graduate Adina Grigore met many people who were working with a Health Coach. Dancers brought up Integrative Nutrition in conversation all the time, and then a long-time interest in nutrition led her to a talk by Joshua Rosenthal. After hearing him speak, she knew that completing the Heath Coach Training Program was the missing piece to her personal training practice.
What Adina expected to get out of the program and what she actually took away after graduating were drastically different. Her training went beyond a solid education with teachings from renowned health professionals. She came away as a new person: a leader and a bold businesswoman with an invincible attitude. She went in as a personal trainer seeking a credible edge, and came out with a thriving natural skincare business. This interview highlights the influence Integrative Nutrition has had on Adina, who lives in Brooklyn, NY, and how her company Sprout Skincare came to be.
How has Joshua Rosenthal made an impact on you since enrolling in the program?
I think anyone who has ever heard Joshua speak would agree that he's pretty powerful. He just seemed to be saying all the things I had always thought about nutrition, but had never been able to articulate. It made me realize the school would help me be able to do that. Now that I've gotten to talk to and work with Joshua, his honesty and warmth has helped me aspire to be that type of business owner as well.
What do you love about the school?
The messaging behind the program is my favorite part. I went to IIN to learn about nutrition, but I came out more capable, confident, and empowered. The power part is really key. The speakers just are so incredibly powerful; they can change your perception in just a few minutes. That's pretty incredible.
The speakers had a powerful impact on you – which perceptions did they change for you?
Besides Joshua, I was most impacted by Iyanla Vanzant, Debbie Ford, Michio Kushi, Paul Pitchford, and Annemarie Colbin. The first three made me feel like I could do anything, and like I should definitely at least try. The latter two taught me that nutrition and what people eat matters way more than people realize, even those of us who care about what we eat.
What lessons in nutrition were most valuable to you?
I learned most of what I know now from IIN. I learned about every single dietary theory, but also about an entire world that wasn't really open to me before attending. I learned I could really do whatever I wanted.
How was Sprout Skincare born?
After graduating, I branched out from the gym I was working at. I started Sprout Wellness, where I taught seminars meant to empower people to be healthy without having to rely so much on the wellness industry. I taught people everything I knew about how to design a personal training program, and how to separate what was important in nutrition and what wasn't. The most popular workshop was about making your own skincare, but at the end, people lined up to buy products that we weren't making (because we were telling them how to go home and make them!), so then we started.
Did you have experience working with skincare products before your training? How did you end up in that field?
No experience! Just lots of experience trying out every skincare product under the sun and still having horrible reactions.
It just evolved out of the seminars I was teaching. People seemed desperate for skincare products they could trust; I agreed. And because I had already done all the work to find what worked for me, I went for it!
Which elements of the training program have helped you build your business and develop skills to be successful in today's market?
People trust me and they trust Sprout because of my training. I really wouldn't have the business I do today without it. People are scared and skeptical; IIN taught me to be clear and patient, because that’s how the speakers are. What they've dedicated their life to doing is very similar to owning a socially responsible business right now. It's an uphill battle, you're fighting against the norm and you're waiting for people (and the economy) to get on board. So I learned to keep going and to be resilient, because that's what every speaker, and the school itself, had in common.
How do you see your business developing in the future? Do you have plans to expand or branch into other areas?
I'm really not sure yet! I've been so busy that I haven't been doing much coaching, and I miss it! I'd love to start incorporating coaching into our model. We'll see. For now we're so busy just making skincare!
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