Healthy Transitions Health Coaching, LLC
Partnering with you to grow and sustain healthy lifestyle choices.
The Healthy Transitions Philosophy


An ally who's been there...
Sarah has a background in psychology, with advanced degrees in educational psychology. She is currently an Associate Professor in the Department of Psychology, Neuroscience, and Human Development at a private liberal arts institution in northeast Ohio, where she has been teaching for the last 12 years.

In 2013, after completing her first sabbatical on motivational orientations and self-regulatory behaviors in ultra-endurance runners, she became interested in sport and health psychology, as well as the emerging field of health coaching. Her research on ultra-runners and her own endeavors with completing ultra-marathons led her to revisit her past experiences with weight loss and rekindled her passion for helping others achieve their own health and wellness goals.

In the summer of 2015, she became NCCA certified as a health coach through the American Council on Exercise (ACE). Since then she has earned continuing education credits in understanding and motivating midlife and older adults and effective counseling techniques. She earned a specialty certification as a Behavioral Change Specialist through ACE in July of 2017 and is currently working to become certified as a Level 1 nutrition coach  through Precision Nutrition. Her personal experiences have compelled her to begin consulting as a health coach, allowing her to share an empathic passion for helping others acquire or regain control of their own physical well-being through systematic goal-setting and reflective processing.  

She hopes that her unique experiences and areas of expertise can lend themselves to helping clients set and maintain realistic goals for healthy living. With her background in psychology and certifications, she can provide insights and tools to help address some of the issues that may be preventing clients from sustaining their fitness goals. She will work with clients to identify these obstacles and find suitable strategies for their success. These strategies may not always focus just on losing weight either, as she firmly believes that fitness isn't just defined by the number on the scale and every BODY is different. She understands the physical and mental struggles associated with lapsing and relapsing and fully understands that “life” can get in the way of self-care on occasion. Her goal is to enable and empower clients to implement long-term sustainable change to facilitate health and wellness. The skills clients acquire may also help them establish (or reestablish) positive changes in other aspects of their lives. 
Relevant skills
  • Research/knowledge in psychology
  • Knowledge of coaching aging populations
  • Assessing current weight and health indicators for clients
  • Creating workout programs for functional fitness for clients
  • Providing and utilizing tools for long-term behavior modification for clients (e.g., setting appropriate goals, behavioral contracts)
  • Providing empathic, judgement-free assistance in establishing and sustaining health and fitness goals for clients
  • Providing collaborative program design that empowers the clients (I won't let you off the hook with personal challenges, but will engage you in the process of designing your own fitness program)
  • Providing general information on nutrition
  • Researching issues that may pose unique circumstances to your health and fitness journey (e.g., specific medical diagnoses like Parkison's disease, Type II Diabetes, etc.) and using that information to tailor strategies for reaching your goals
  • Personal experiences in training for duathlons (cycling/running), and competitive running events (from 5ks to 24-hour events; road and trail terrain) 
  • Personal fitness experiences with weightlifting and CrossFit

Other professional skills 
  • Fourteen+ years of college teaching (courses taught in human development, gender psychology, introductory psychology, the history of psychology, sport psychology, etc.)
  • Five+ years of administrative work and oversight of an academic department (e.g., addressing personnel issues and evaluations, budgetary and curricular issues, etc.)
  • Chair of the faculty senate (e.g., oversight of governance issues impacting 140+ faculty members)
  • Formal educational background in human development, learning and cognitive theories, behavioral and motivational factors that influence learning, and educational assessment
Relevant qualifications
  • NCCA Health Coach, American Council on Exercise- July 2015, updated in July 2017
  • CPR/AED Certified, American Heart Association- July 2017
  • Continuing education credits through American Council on Exercise- 
    • Understanding and Motivating Midlife and Older Adults- September 2015
    • Effective Counseling Techniques- November 2015
    • In-home Personal Training, American Council on Exercise- June 2016 
  • Specialty certification: Behavior Change Specialist, American Council on Exercise- July 2017
  • Level I Nutrition coach: Precision Nutrition- currently pursuing
Relevant presentations 
  • June 2017
    • Lakeside Chautauqua Lecture Series 
    • Honorarium
    • Lakeside, OH
      • Nutrition and functional fitness
      • ​​Introduction to functional fitness and nutrition
  • April 2016
    • Conversations & Company/Evergreen Healing Centers, Tallmadge, OH
      • If at first you don’t succeed: Motivation, self-regulation and other tools for effective goal setting and success
  • March 2016
    • Department of Psychology Alumni Speaker Series
    • Honorarium
    • Mercyhurst University, Erie, PA
      • Health coaching, setting goals, and establishing habits
  • November 2014
    • Sand Run Metro Park, Akron, OH
      • A runner’s guide: Lessons learned about motivation, self-regulation, and life in general
  • ​​June 2014
    • North American Society for the Psychology of Sport and Physical Activity Annual Conference
    • Minneapolis, MN
      • Tales from the trails: Linking classroom learning to ultra-marathon training
  • ​​  March 2014
    • University of Mount Union, Alliance, OH​
      • Tales from the trails: Linking classroom learning to ultra-marathon training
Other qualifications
  • Ph.D. Educational Psychology, May 2005
  • M.S. Educational Psychology, December 2002
  • B.A. Psychology, May 2000 

IDEA Health & Fitness Association- July 2015-present
American Council on Exercise- July 2015-present