Let’s work together to make nutrition and wellness more honest, and more research-driven, while also being less intimidating and more fun.


Meru [mɛru] is a mountain in the Himalayas that was once thought to be impossible to climb. Until, one day, it was conquered by a group of climbers who worked as a team.

To overcome unhealthy habits feels a lot like climbing a mountain like Meru — I’m here to guide you along your journey to the summit.

I’m different than most nutrition coaches because I incorporate mindfulness and meditation to help make healthful nutrition a lifestyle, not a quick-fix, even for busy people — like you — who feel like they don’t have the time or energy to focus on themselves.

Ask yourself: What is your Meru?

The Meru Wellness Philosophy

Have you found yourself dieting for the past several months or years, and you’re just tired of it? Do you ever feel guilty after eating a certain food? Do you feel like you can’t make much progress towards your goals? Are you constantly on the “diet rollercoaster” and unable to find something sustainable… and now you’re getting frustrated and feel like there isn’t any hope?

Well, you’re not alone.

I dislike the word “diet” (it has the word “die” in it!), and I abandon the use of “cheat,” “clean,” “good,” and “bad” when it comes to describing food. Food is meant to be beautiful and delicious fuel, without feelings of guilt or shame attached to it. It is meant to be something you can freely share with your loved ones and friends, because humans are meant to be social creatures.

I prefer to have a flexible approach to food, so no foods are off-limits for you. Since you won’t be deprived of eating what you want, you may find that you’ll no longer yo-yo diet or make yourself feel riddled with guilt for eating what you enjoy eating.

With my guidance, you’ll focus on portion control, moderation, and finding balance — while also fueling yourself to meet your goals along the way.

I work to empower you to make lasting changes in your habits and overall relationship with food, so you can be self-sufficient and navigate your nutrition on your own. I do this by incorporating a new “mini habit” as a focus every 2-3 weeks, and these series of habits build upon one another until a more solid foundation of self-care is established with you.

Small steps are what create giant leaps in terms of progress.

The journey in making nutrition a lifestyle is unique to each of us since we come to the table with a variety of food baggage. Pun intended. I can help you make sense of it all along the way.

About the Owner & Coach, Jen Kates

First of all, you won’t be alone in this journey.

Nutrition and mindfulness are passions of mine, and nothing brings me more joy than to guide people to meet their goals. I don’t try to fit you into a mold — that’s like trying to fit a square peg into a round hole — instead, I try to meet you where you are now, and help guide you to where you want to go, together.

With over 22 years of experience using meditation, I’m able to help clients use this practice (in addition to breathing exercises and mindfulness), to foster a healthy relationship with food as well as with themselves.

I’m a natural-born nutrition nerd with almost 12 years of scientific research experience, so I stay current on the latest nutrition research. I also regularly attend seminars, webinars, and trainings on nutrition, wellness, fitness, change psychology, and mindfulness.

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Me, doing my favorite things in the world: smiling and mountain biking in Colorado (photo credit Joel Kilby)

I maintain a professional referral and support network that includes a Registered Dietitian, a psychotherapist specializing in eating disorders and body image, and other health and fitness professionals.

I know what it’s like to stress eat my way through a pack of Oreos, because I’ve been there before. I also know what it’s like to make permanent habit changes in order to see results and surpass goals and expectations, and I know how to make others equally successful. Let me guide you on this journey to incredible health and vibrant living. I look forward to hearing from you.


  • Certified Health Coach (American Council on Exercise)
  • Precision Nutrition Level 2
  • Precision Nutrition Level 1
  • CrossFit Level 2 Trainer
  • CrossFit Level 1 Trainer
  • Graduate-level Public Health coursework at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill (2006-2008) and a BA from UNC-Greensboro
  • Certified Indoor Cycling Instructor & Programmer
  • Attend webinars and trainings taught by various experts in nutrition, metabolism, fitness, habits, change psychology, mindfulness, and hormones
  • Additional certifications currently in progress:
    • NASM Certified Personal Trainer
    • NASM Corrective Exercise Specialist
    • NASM Fitness Nutrition Specialist

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My monthly services include customized nutrition plans combined with attentive coaching to meet your overall health, nutrition, and fitness goals. Your personalized nutrition plan is created by evaluating your answers to an in-depth online questionnaire, in addition to any questions you answer when we chat on the phone during our initial consultation.

Costs range from $85 to $160 per month or more, depending upon what is needed for your success and at what point you’re currently at in your nutrition journey. These options include check-ins with me for personal accountability as well as to make any adjustments to your nutrition plan to meet your goals.

I offer a variety of nutrition programs, from counting macros to using other methods for portion control and intuitive eating — which one you follow depends on your goals and where you are currently on your health journey.

Every coaching plan includes the following:

  • An e-book that explains nutrition basics in addition to my coaching process and what to expect during our time together
  • An email education series for new clients that will educate you on a variety of nutrition topics and mindfulness
  • A custom nutrition plan
  • An easily sharable tool for tracking your progress via an app
  • A video or phone chat before you get started to make sure you are set-up for success
  • New mini habits to focus on every 2-3 weeks for life-long success

Is individual coaching just not your thing? No problem! Alternatively, I offer a one-time personalized macronutrient plan that is calculated based upon your goals. The cost for this option is $85, but it doesn’t include any coaching, check-ins, or additional guidance. If you would like to purchase additional updates to your initial calculated macronutrient plan, each additional update costs $50.

Ultimately, you need to ask yourself: How much is your nutrition a part of your life, and how much is it worth to you? How much do you value sleep, lowering your stress levels, and developing healthy habits? These things are invaluable to your overall wellness.

Sure, maybe you pay only $15 or even $150 or more for your gym membership each month, but that’s for only one 45-90 minute workout a day — however, eating, sleeping, and stress are a part of your life for the other 23 hours each day.

So, how are you spending those other 23 hours?

What is life-long wellness worth to you?

Contact me for any additional information and to schedule a free 30-minute consultation. I would love to chat to see if we’re a perfect fit.


“There have been days when I’ve said “f it” and days when I’ve driven everyone crazy, mostly myself, with tracking. This whole journey [is] to change the way I view food and still enjoy eating what I want because that’s the whole point! I’ve learned the best way to fuel my body to feel my best and perform at 100%… I’ve PR’d basically every lift and consistently move faster with body weight movements. So here’s to 2017, getting stronger, and leaner, and a HUGE thank you to Jen [who] has been unbelievably awesome and supportive.”

-Dana K.

“In a short time I’m finding counting macros “flexible eating” to be a game changer. I have the energy of a squirrel on RedBull and losing winter fat faster than I thought possible. Big thanks to the coach @meruwellness for taking us on.”

-Jeff B.


Interested in working with me? Drop me a line, and I will be in touch shortly.



How do you spend your meals? Are you eating while on your phone or laptop, scrolling through social media, or watching TV to binge on Netflix? If so, you’re likely eating mindlessly. Follow these five simple steps to mindful eating.