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Do credentials matter?

Hi friends <3 How’s it going? Hope you’re having a great night <3

I loved reading about your morning rituals! For those of you who asked, here’s what today’s to-do list looked like:

list

[I just bought a new notebook and left it in the car, so today was on a scrap piece of paper]

It’s funny because as much as I use technology in everyday life, I can’t get on board with electronic to-do lists. Paper works for me! I can see it all the time and it’s a great constant reminder of what I need to do. I use my iPhone calendar for appointments and that’s as fancy as it gets over here 😉

Some eats!

lunch

Lunch was a beastly salad with:

-mixed greens

-organic raspberries

-goat gouda

-balsamic dressing

-sea salt and pepper

salad (2)

egg puff on brown rice bread + nutritional yeast

MY OTHER RECIPES


toast

During my lunch break was a little cray cray, since I had to shower after Zumba, eat lunch, and prep dinner so I could have a little more down time tonight.

It was totally worth it and now the Pilot’s enchiladas went from fridge to oven, all I have to do is put a couple of last-minute things together and dinner will be served 🙂

enchiladas

Here’s the reason for the lack of Fashion posts this week:

aa727d17e1564329aa3e0ba72d9d7457_7

It’s been a little less-than-fashionable over here 😉

Afternoon snack with a goat’s milk yogurt with half a Larabar crumbled into it:

yogurt

So something I thought might be interesting to talk about tonight is the importance of credentials.

When I was writing my first book proposal –I’ve written three, all different- the major point of resistance I faced was the fact that I’m not considered an “expert.” There are thousands of people out there who can get a nutrition or personal training certification, but that doesn’t make them an expert by any means. So while I did hold a few certifications, the publishers I spoke with wanted to see me as a Registered Dietician or Exercise Physiologist before allowing me to write a book on healthy living.

At the time, I was kind of let down (and also once-again doubting the reason why I earned a degree in Finance), but now I totally see the point.

And I have similar feelings when I read websites.

I read a lot of websites, many of which include fitness and nutrition information. Many of the people who write them have no certification whatsoever in the fields they’re discussing. Sometimes the information is dead-on, because it was well-researched or something that works for them in everyday life, but some of it is absolutely incorrect. This worries me because unlike a website about fashion or home decor (which really isn’t inherently affecting the internal functioning of one’s body), fitness and nutrition advice affects our health. And following poor advice can affect it adversely.

The thing is, any joker can get a personal trainer cert and use the certification irresponsibly. Remember studying for a test in High School to almost immediately forget the information you were tested on as soon as the test was over? Well, that happens in the fitness world (an possibly many other fields) all the time. To me, a certification is important, but not the end-all-be-all. It says that the person is dedicated enough to study required information, pay a hefty amount of money (financial attachment to things like this can sometimes make them feel more meaningful), and participate in continuing education.

Obviously, it’s up to the readers of these websites to use their best judgment with how they want these things to influence them, and also to do their own research.

But,

how important are credentials to you?

Is it something you consider, or do you take what you read with a grain of sea salt?

I’m excited to hear your thoughts <3

Have a great night!
xoxo

Gina

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138 Comments

  1. Jill on August 11, 2011 at 9:54 pm

    I just put together one of your breakfast cookies for in the morning…i’m excited about trying it…hope I did it right/I like it!

  2. Shelley on August 12, 2011 at 10:04 am

    I, for one, would love to read a book written by you. I love your blog and your writing style. Have you considered self-publishing and selling on Amazon?

    • Fitnessista on August 12, 2011 at 10:56 am

      thank you, shelley! i have, but definitely am trying to do what i can with the traditional route for now. that may be an upcoming project though, for sure!

  3. Running Betty on August 12, 2011 at 3:10 pm

    If I am reading something that resonates for me, I’ll research it further myself. Even if it’s Dr. Oz 🙂
    Think of people who played football in college 30 yrs ago and how much has changed in regards to working out, or a nutritionist who hasn’t taken the time to read about raw or vegan lifestyles. I had an OBGYN tell my daughter that she thought putting spinach in a smoothie was bad practice because then you don’t get in the habit of eating spinach. Since when does it have to be chewed to benefit the body? But she’s a doctor… who feeds her kids donuts and chips every day…
    So yah, long story short, grain of salt.

  4. Marianne on August 19, 2011 at 4:42 am

    As someone in the midst of pursuing one of these credentials (soon to be an RD), I feeling pretty strongly about people having some level of regulated, well-recognized certification if they want to offer advice on a specific health and wellness topic. I am fully aware that you can go to great lengths to educate yourself properly without having formal piece of paper saying you know this info, and I also know that those who do have some level of credentials may not always keep them up to date. That being said, I think it’s about respecting the fact that there are people out there who are passionate enough to dedicate large amounts of their time and money to be experts in their field. Otherwise why would we even bother? I could very well go out and work as a nutritionist with the education I have right now, but I want to be able to call myself a Registered Dietitian, because that is a legally protected term. People can be confident that you have gone through adequate learning and training and have met specific standards to get that RD after your name. And I have the same respect for people who train to be doctors, nurses, physical therapists, audiologists, etc. I think that’s really what it all comes down to – respect for those who have pursued “expert professions” within their field.

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