If you’ve got a passion for health and fitness like I have a passion for ice cream (wait, what?), you’re in the right place.
My name is Joe Meier and I currently reside in Eden Prairie, MN. I received my B.S. in Kinesiology in 2014 at the University of Wisconsin – Eau Claire while I played 4 years of tennis, several intramural sports and held four different jobs. I am a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist (CSCS) through the National Strength and Conditioning Association (NSCA), a Precision Nutrition Level 2 Certified Coach, Level 1 and Level 2 Certified in Reflexive Performance Reset (RPR), and a USA Weightlifting Certified Level 1 Sports Performance Coach (USAW1).
These certifications allow me to not only set myself apart from the vast sea of “trainers” and “coaches” that may or may not be qualified to dish out fitness and diet advice, but to help encourage myself to always continue learning through review of research related to nutrition and exercise, personal experience training and coaching, and to help me connect with like-minded professionals who are passionate about learning on the job or through continuing education clinics and conferences.
My career has always been changing, and that is one of the reasons why I love it. A few things I’ve filled my time with include:
- Coaching high school tennis and hockey
- Giving private tennis lessons to individuals and groups of all ages
- Leading Hutchinson’s H-Town Tennis summer program for all players grades 6-12
- Working as a personal and group trainer for groups of 2-10 people
- Presenting on topics such as career paths in exercise science, exercise and training, injury rehab, coaching, and diet
- Coaching nutrition and lifestyle habit change
- Coaching strength and conditioning for high school and college athletes
- Training adults with disabilities
- Volunteering as a strength coach for Chad Greenway’s Day to REACH Football Camp
- Designing and co-directing an obstacle course challenge run in Hutchinson, MN, known as the Tiger Time Challenge
How I Got Here
The distance I’ve traveled along the “health” continuum in the past 12 years is staggering. I grew up with pretty terrible eating habits and a shaky-at-best mindset when it came to optimism and control (despite my parents being pretty positive role models for both). My parents encouraged healthy eating as I became interested in it and it definitely helped as I became their annoying personal “food police” officer while I was entrenched in the new diet and food label information I frequently got my hands on. I played almost every sport I possibly could have growing up and was as active as a kid could possibly be in his spare time.
Eating the biggest serving, the sweetest snacks and the most calorie-dense (and/or nutrient poor) meals and snacks week after week and year after year finally caught up to me. I was unhappy with how I looked, how my peers viewed me and how my lifestyle was beginning to snowball into something no kid should go through.
The sports I played kept me active, but as you have probably heard, “You can’t outrun a bad diet.” My mindset was subpar when it came to sports and the quirky habits that accompanied my OCD tendencies. Many of the things I did still have me scratching my head today, wondering how a person can struggle with controlling their own thoughts – which I now know is all too common. A lot of self-practice, I would later on find out, was going to become the best way to solve any personal problem.
I started to read every label, article, magazine, book and watch every video I could find regarding fitness and diet. After a few years of learning (as I now know, wasn’t really learning as it is for me today), I became the “health nut”. I became hyper-aware of what I was eating and drinking every day, lost body fat and became more active in the weight room. And thus began the life-long journey of Lifetime Lean.
As one of my favorite human motor development professors said to a class that was always baffled by how much he knew within the exercise science field, “I know a large chunk, but just a small piece of what there is to know.” The experience and knowledge I currently have as a fitness professional may be ahead of the curve, but my knowledge base could be the size of a grain of sand in a full 16-oz glass compared to the amount of information that is currently out there within the field of diet and exercise (and it continues to grow every day). Any trainer, coach or professional who doesn’t think this way and keep an open mind to learning when provided with a new idea or concept, in my eyes, is no professional at all.