Interview: Jayme Limbaugh, Dietitian, Crystal Coast Wellness & Performance [Tips + Nutrition]
Choosing to be a business owner, especially in the world of fitness, can be a hard and uncertain road to follow. However, when you have a legacy and lineage of entrepreneurs in your family serving as mentors and support, that course may begin to get easier to navigate.
Today, we’re talking to Jayme Limbaugh who is the owner of an Anytime Fitness as well as the Co-Founder of Crystal Coast Wellness & Performance. She discusses how her lifelong love of exercise and sports and her enterprising spirit combined with strategic partnerships have helped her to build and maintain a successful fitness practice.
If you’re ready to grow and manage your business better, schedule a demo today.
Meet Jayme Limbaugh, Dietitian and Co-Owner of Crystal Coast Wellness & Performance
Schimri Yoyo: Welcome back. Thank you for joining us. Again, this is Schimri Yoyo with exercise.com, and we are continuing our series of interviews with fitness professionals. Today we are lucky to have, bracing us with her presence, Jayme Limbaugh, who is the Co-Owner of Crystal Coast’s Wellness and Performance in Eastern Carolina and also the owner of Anytime Fitness, also in the Eastern Carolina area. She’s a registered dietitian, I believe.
So, Jayme, thank you for joining us.
Jayme Limbaugh: Thank you. Thank you for having me.
Schimri Yoyo: Yeah. Now let’s jump right into it and get a little intro to our audience about you. How did you become passionate about fitness training?
Jayme Limbaugh: Oh, gosh, it feels like so long ago. I just always really liked it. I always played sports as a kid. I wouldn’t say that I was necessarily athletic, but I, myself, enjoyed moving. From there, it just always piqued my interest. I started running daily when I was 12 or 13 and then it just kind of snowballed.
I got my first exercise certification. I remember I was 15, that was the only one that didn’t have an age thing. My mom took me over to my aunt’s house to proctor it, and I just have been studying it ever since.
Schimri Yoyo: That’s awesome. Now, what sports did you play growing up?
Jayme Limbaugh: I played soccer for a very long time and then I played basketball in the winter and tennis as well. So, those are the three main ones.
Schimri Yoyo: Do you play any sports currently actively? Are you still a runner?
Jayme Limbaugh: Yep, I’m still running. I just did a triathlon, actually, in Wilmington and that was a lot of fun. I’ve gotten into CrossFit quite a bit. I’m really not prejudiced when it comes to exercise. As long as it’s movement, I’m in. But a lot more strength training, I think, and endurance. It’s always my stress relief, so I enjoy that.
Schimri Yoyo: That’s awesome. You have a degree in exercise kinesiology from Eastern Carolina University. Go Pirates.
[Editor’s note: There is no love lost between ECU fans and NC State fans.]
Jayme Limbaugh: Yay. Thank you.
Schimri Yoyo: So right, did you attend many football or basketball games during your undergrad career?
Jayme Limbaugh: I did, I did. It was definitely part of the experience and I loved every second of it. There were some drawbacks to going to a large university, but some of the perks are just lots of people. Those football games were great.
I actually got my second—I have two Bachelor’s and a Master’s, and my second Bachelor’s was from the University of Alabama, and that is football nation right there. I mean, I only did it online, but my husband got me a sweatshirt that said Alabama. I’ll tell you what, people are like, “Oh yeah, Roll Tide, and this and that.” I’m like, “I just got this sweatshirt.”
[Editor’s note: Alabama is a football nation and “Roll Tide” is its Pledge of Allegiance.]
Schimri Yoyo: That’s awesome. Now, how’s the barbecue at some of the tailgate?
Jayme Limbaugh: Oh, man, the barbecue was really good. It’s always good. Everybody starts so early and they’re so welcoming, so you just kind of wander around and just eat whatever.
Schimri Yoyo: Nice, that’s a great way to build community.
Jayme Limbaugh: Truth. Very true. Go to an ECU football game, for sure.
Schimri Yoyo: Straight up. You also have a Master’s in sports medicine, right? From Georgia Southern. Now, what one class during your formal education was your favorite? And which one do you think best prepared you for what you’re doing now?
Jayme Limbaugh: I got to answer that twice. So I got to answer it for the first one. At ECU, there was Dr. Rowe, I think he’s in England now, I don’t know, but he taught a class about exercise testing and I utilized that class every single day, every single day.
The other class with grad school that was the most influential would be Biomechanics. To be honest with you, I don’t even really like biomechanics, but I use it every single day. That physics aspect has been really powerful.
Schimri Yoyo: Oh, that’s good. Now you mentioned Dr. Rowe, one of your former professors. Do you have any others who were mentors for you when you were entering the health and fitness industry as a professional?
Jayme Limbaugh: Mentors outside of school?
Schimri Yoyo: Yes.
Jayme Limbaugh: My family. My family is—they’re all entrepreneurs. My dad owns a business, actually, right next door to us. My mom owns businesses, my grandfather [also]. So, I really lean on them to really learn.
So, whenever I have an issue with anything structural within the business, they’ve been really influential. My mom, I mean, she’s just a superwoman. Raised four kids and now she’s this mogul. She’s just amazing, so she’s really inspired me a lot.
Schimri Yoyo: That’s awesome, that’s awesome. Now when you’re not training or running your many businesses, what else do you do for fun?
Jayme Limbaugh: Play with my kids.
Schimri Yoyo: That’s awesome.
Jayme Limbaugh: I love playing with my kids and then I’ll craft. I like knitting, which is the really complete opposite of running, but it’s very nice. So, I’m usually doing one of those two things or at the same time when I get home, but my family is really important to me.
Schimri Yoyo: Okay, that’s awesome. So I’m going to have to put in an order for a sweater for this upcoming winter.
Jayme Limbaugh: For sure. I can do that, I can do that. Those needles, they’re popping right now, because it’s getting cold soon.
Schimri Yoyo: It’s very true. We’re here in Philadelphia and the weather gets very schizophrenic at times.
Jayme Limbaugh: Oh, I can only imagine. Bring your jacket.
Empathy, Emotional Intelligence, and Exercise
Schimri Yoyo: That’s right. So considering your practice, what one word would best describe your philosophy and methodology of training and wellness?
Jayme Limbaugh: Compassion. You have to be able to put yourself in that person you’re speaking to, into their shoes. Without being able to relate to anybody, you’re never able to fully help them, and I truly believe that.
Whether others may not believe that to be true, I’ve worked with people that lack compassion, but their brain is just brilliant, but they can’t get that information to the next person. So I think, really, being able to be empathetic, sympathetic, and compassionate to that client that you’re working with is absolutely pivotal.
Schimri Yoyo: Now, how do you address the topic of nutrition with your clients?
Jayme Limbaugh: So, I have a slow and steady approach. I think that’s been the greatest gift of having a second career built on the first one, is that I’ve already worked with people and behavior change and that it’s long-term sustainability.
Nowadays, we want things now. We’re not willing to wait. We want to lose five pounds tomorrow. So really just going slow and steady and being like, “No, we’re just going to change two things over the next four weeks. Once those are accomplished, we’ll build on them and build on them and build on them.”
Because my biggest thing is that your nutrition needs to be something today that will be the same five years from now. You’ll have some changes because we all age and have different nutritional needs, but the lifestyle, the behavior habits, they need to be built slow and steady.
Schimri Yoyo: That’s a great word of advice. Now, what’s the difference between active nutrition and going on a diet?
Jayme Limbaugh: So active nutrition, I’m assuming that you’re meaning more like lifestyle change or being active?
Schimri Yoyo: Both.
Jayme Limbaugh: Okay. So I’d say lifestyle change and going on a diet. Going on a diet sounds so short-term, sounds so much like a jail cell, you know? People like, “I’m going on—” I’m not picking on keto. It’s a pretty vogue word nowadays—”I’m going on keto.”
[Editor’s Note: Check out the clip below from Dr. Oz about the what’s and how’s of a keto diet.]
Do you really understand keto? Is that really how you want to eat five years from now? Is that really [suitable to] your needs? I’ve had diabetics come and say, “Well, I’m going to go on keto.”
I’m like, “Ah, no, I don’t think you really understand what’s happening in your body that’s different than the next person’s. So this person may be wired better for that type of nutrition, as opposed to what your needs are.”
So I think that the long-term is just wholesome. It’s what’s going to make you feel good inside and out, where a diet is something you do, typically for a vanity reason.
Grow and manage your fitness business better with Exercise.com
Schimri Yoyo: That’s great insight. Now, why was it important for you to get formally trained as a dietician?
Jayme Limbaugh: So, I still remember it. I was sitting in my office at Anytime Fitness, and this is before the wellness center was built. And I was listening to one of the clients talk to their trainers, and they had said some off-the-wall, crazy nutrition advice that they had been given from one of their healthcare practitioners.
It was just one of those moments where you’re going, “My hands are tied. We can’t correct them because we’re not dietitians; we’re not nutritionists.” We have to be basic as personal trainers and physiologists.
I was like, “We need a dietitian. I love school, and I’m pregnant, so what else am I going to do? So I’ll just go back to school.” So it was really just to give way more information on the whole big picture for our clients. That’s just really important. You don’t want to just fix one thing because we know that health and wellness is multi-faceted.
Schimri Yoyo: Alright, that was great. Great story, nice anecdote. Now, we interviewed your Co-Founder of the Wellness Center, Pauline Juhle, earlier last month and she had great things to say about you. You guys seem to have a great partnership there.
Can you just talk about how are you and Pauline similar, how are you different, and how do you complement each other?
Jayme Limbaugh: So, we always had this saying, because we are very different. She is very much like my husband. So I see the forest, but I don’t see the trees. I just know that there’s a big picture and I’m going to build it. She looks at every single tree; she doesn’t let one go past her.
So between the two of us, we’ve got it down, where I see the big picture and I’m driven and I really want this end result, and she puts together the steps from the beginning to the end. So she does all the microwork, all the detail stuff. She likes program manuals. I like selecting what program we’re going to start to build. So, we really complement each other that way.
Schimri Yoyo: That’s great to know your strengths and to be able to play off each other that way.
Jayme Limbaugh: Oh, yeah, yeah. You have to. You have to or else you’re just going to butt heads the entire time.
Schimri Yoyo: That’s great. You got the best of both worlds. You got the real-life husband and the “work husband.”
[Editor’s note: See the video below to explore the benefits of a work spouse.]
Jayme Limbaugh: Oh, yeah, somedays. Somedays. Yeah.
Schimri Yoyo: Now, how have you managed to budget your time and energy between your coaching responsibilities, your parenting responsibilities, and entrepreneurship?
Jayme Limbaugh: Coffee and wine. Haha. Coffee in the morning. That’s about what it comes down to in some cases. Coffee to get me going and wine to wind down. But I mean, that’s just joking, of course.
But I try as hard as I can to—when the time for the phone to go off, it goes off. And that’s family time. It is difficult with a fitness facility that has 24/7 access, you feel like you’re on demand all the time, and then building the wellness center. Then, I also contract out at the hospital, doing some inpatient clinical dietary work.
So it’s just really making sure that my day is not overly mapped out, because that’s definitely one of my things: that I don’t want to have every second of every day programmed. But kind of dedicating a chunk of each day to certain things. But when it’s time to unplug, I unplug. Because my kids, they just need it.
Schimri Yoyo: Oh, that’s good. Alright, well, brag about yourself a little bit. What makes you and the team at Crystal Coast Wellness and your team at Anytime Fitness, what makes you unique?
Jayme Limbaugh: It’s a full picture. I mean, that’s what I think what makes us, us. So we’re educated, we’re compassionate, we have good bedside manner, we’re driven. We really want to serve every need regarding wellness, whether it becomes massage for mental and physical, physical therapy, nutrition, personal training. That’s what I think makes us so special, is that we’ve really considered everything.
Schimri Yoyo: That’s good. It sounds like a comprehensive, fully-integrated view of wellness.
Jayme Limbaugh: Yeah. Yeah, I believe so.
Business Obstacles and Business Opportunities
Schimri Yoyo: Alright. What have you learned that you wish you would’ve known when first starting your own business?
Jayme Limbaugh: Be patient and don’t micromanage. Be patient, don’t micromanage, and just don’t stress over the things you can’t change.
Schimri Yoyo: Alright. Be patient and don’t micromanage and don’t stress out over things you can’t change. Sounds like great advice for both business and marriage.
Jayme Limbaugh: Oh yeah, going on seven years. He’s very happy. No, it’s awesome. Yeah, it is.
Schimri Yoyo: My wife and I are been married for nine years, it’s going to be 10 in July (of 2020). So it’s been exciting. But I feel like—I joke—but I feel like that advice can be applicable both to business and to any working relationship.
Jayme Limbaugh: Yeah, well, they influence each other, right? I mean, if you don’t have a happy home life, how can you possibly be happy during the day? Because, eventually, you got to go home, right? So it is important to do it in all of them.
Schimri Yoyo: That’s good. In what ways do you leverage social media and technology to promote your businesses?
Jayme Limbaugh: So social media, I mean, it’s such a platform to get information out there, so we try to utilize that. Like you’d said when we were chitchatting before you started recording is that you guys are trying to get good information out there.
That’s really how we leverage it. We want to make sure that educated information gets out there so that people are aware that we’re here and what we’re doing is backed by something solid. It’s not just something we’re making up or we read on a billboard somewhere that may not be correct. So, that’s really how we leverage social media.
Schimri Yoyo: Now, what has been your biggest challenge as an entrepreneur and what has been the greatest reward?
Jayme Limbaugh: The biggest challenge, I think, would be getting comfortable with being uncomfortable. So with that being said, marketing, I can talk to people all day long, I love talking. I can’t imagine having a job where I can’t talk.
[Editor’s note: See video below to be reminded that our success often comes on the backside of our discomfort.]
But being able to go out and kind of toot your own horn and be like, “Hey, I’m actually good at this. I really want to help you.” That’s been the hardest part, is getting other people in front of you to come into your business. So I would say marketing has been the hardest.
Schimri Yoyo: Yeah.
Jayme Limbaugh: The most rewarding is that I get to be my own boss and I get to make my own schedule. And I work a lot and I enjoy that. It’s nice, though, that in the middle of the day last week, I got to go chop out apples at my kid’s school. So the rewarding part is that I finally get to utilize my time management skills so that I can accomplish everything that I want to do in a day.
Schimri Yoyo: That’s good. Well, there’s so much that I could ask you, but I want to be respectful of your time. We’re very thankful for the time that you have spent with us. So we’ve got a few more questions for you.
What’s next for you personally and for your businesses, in the short-term and in the long-term?
Jayme Limbaugh: Personally? I don’t know, just be a mom. I mean, it’s like the theme. When I’m not working all the time, I’m a mom, so I really don’t know what else—for me, personally, is to continue to help them thrive. Maybe do a few more competitions, like CrossFit competitions or a triathlon, that would be fun.
Professionally, we’d like to expand to local areas and continue to help people and possibly have three locations. That’s really what our five- and 10-year goals are.
Schimri Yoyo: Yeah. Now, have you considered doing any type of online training in the future to expand your reach that way?
Jayme Limbaugh: Absolutely. We’ve got a pilot program right now that we’re looking to take online which would be a benefit for people. Not just locally, but yes, exactly, globally, wherever.
Schimri Yoyo: Oh, that’s awesome. We’ll definitely keep an eye out for that in the future. Finally, Jayme, thank you again for your time.
Do you have any recommendations for resources for our audience? I mean, it doesn’t necessarily have to be fitness related, it could be any books, podcasts or magazines that you feel would be valuable to our audience.
Jayme Limbaugh: Gosh, I know when I read your thing that Pauline did, she has this long list of books and she just asked me what am I reading? I was like, “I read so many different things, that I can’t even think of one in particular.” I don’t like podcasts as much. I don’t know. I don’t really have anything for resources. Just kind of figure out, identify what your weaknesses are or things you want to work on and continue to read.
I mean, reading, in general, is so good. Even though I can’t think of a specific title that comes to my brain right now, I mean, go find something to read. There’s not one CEO that I’ve ever heard of, and you could probably say the same, that isn’t reading something at some time.
Schimri Yoyo: No, that’s true. No, no, well, that’s pointing us in the area of continuing education, which is good, you know? We don’t want to make it easy for our audience all the time, sometimes they got to put in a little grunt work too, right?
Jayme Limbaugh: That’s exactly right, go find your book that inspires you. Because everyone, what inspires—I don’t want to say something and then they read it and they’re like, “Well, that was kind of a letdown. What’s that Jayme girl know?” Go find something. I know that I needed help with my organizational skills, so truthfully, I’ve been reading tons of how to de-clutter your life type of books so that I can stay focused on what I need to do.
Schimri Yoyo: Yeah. Well, that’s good advice. Being self-aware and then taking the steps to try to improve yourself. So I think that’s good advice.
Well, thank you again, Jayme, for your time. I appreciate you and Pauline and your families for offering up your time to speak with us. We wish you guys much-continued success there in Eastern Carolina.
Jayme Limbaugh: Thank you.
Schimri Yoyo: I told Pauline that I hope to make it down there some time and participate in one of your runs. So maybe I’ll have to come down, and at some point, we can do a competition together.
Jayme Limbaugh: Yeah, that’d be so awesome. Are you a runner?
Schimri Yoyo: I dabble. I used to be when I was younger, and now I do it sporadically with my brother-in-law. He’s a big runner, so he’s in Massachusetts now, in the Boston area, I’m in Philadelphia. But our families are very close, so we see each other probably six to eight times a year, and so I’ll go out running with him all the time. So yeah, so I get my three to five miles in, that’s usually my—I stay in my lane. That’s my window.
Jayme Limbaugh: Yeah, I definitely understand. When I say running, that doesn’t mean I go running for a long time. I feel like I am a Cadillac, not a Ferrari. It’s for comfort and slow, steady, not for speed. So I like your three to five miles. I think we’re both runners, that qualifies us.
Schimri Yoyo: Well, that’s good. Alright, take care. Thank you again for your time.
Jayme Limbaugh: Thank you. You too.
If you’re ready to grow and manage your business better, schedule a demo today.
Schimri Yoyo is a writer for Exercise.com and a financial advisor with active life and health insurance licenses. In a past life, he covered Villanova Men’s Basketball and Big East Football for Examiner.com. Schimri has also produced freelance copywriting, editing, and proofreading for various websites and online publications for over a decade. He is an avid sports fan, possessing an encyclopedic knowledge of all things Boston Celtics, Boston Red Sox, and San Francisco 49ers. Schimri is an educator and a storyteller who is eager to assist individuals and families to stay financially and physically fit.