Client Background-

The subject of this Chain Effect Client Success Story is Ekron (Cheslun) Crow.
Cheslun is a father who works as a full-time barista. In his spare time, Cheslun enjoys long distance running, signing up for several races during the year; including half and full marathons.

Why Chain Effect?

Like many of our clients Cheslun came to Chain Effect interested in Nutrition Counseling. He was looking to help manage his type 2 diabetes since his Hemoglobin A1C [or average blood sugar levels] was at 6.1%. His long-term goal was to discontinue his medication while improving his running performance.

Cheslun also had complaints of right shoulder (scapular) pain. This was likely stemming from his postural demands during his working hours which featured a lot of standing, constant arm movement and carrying of heavy objects.

During his treatment Cheslun ended up finding out how every link strengthens the chain, experiencing a true Chain Effect by also utilizing our Physical Therapy, Gym Membership and Personal Training Services!

The Chain Effect-

To start, Registered Dietitian Sydney Anderson outlined a plan focusing on a combination of Medical Nutrition Therapy and Sports Nutrition. Sydney began meeting with Cheslun weekly to create an optimized, sustainable dietary plan to better manage his diabetes while also fueling him for intense gym workouts and long distance runs.

Over a period of 5 Months, a comprehensive, tailored strategy for Cheslun was implemented; emphasizing accountability, habit change and building a healthier relationship with food (to not only create big short term changes, but to ensure that the changes stick.) Cheslun was tasked with continuing to show up while the Chain Effect team did their part by guiding him through each step of the process and supporting him when times got tough.

Our experts and Cheslun began tracking his dietary intake via My Fitness Pal (or MFP) and eventually Nutritionix (both food tracking apps.)

With a more complete picture of Cheslun’s situation, macronutrient goals (especially protein and carbs) were adjusted to be consumed consistently throughout the day at regular intervals, culminating at six times daily every two to four hours. This increased Cheslun’s intake of total calories, fiber-rich carbohydrates (including starches, fruits and vegetables), fluids and electrolytes to better support his active lifestyle while decreasing his consumption of fats and refined carbohydrates. More frequent meals (a natural means of helping to manage his diabetes and appetite) also helped Cheslun maintain consistent blood sugar levels during the day.

Cheslun’s new higher-calorie, higher-carbohydrate, higher-fiber, moderate-protein and moderate-fat dietary plan centered around fueling his exercise and activities, with a focus on pre-, during- and post- workout timing on training and race days. This plan was backed by more home-cooked, balanced meals (per the Athlete’s Plate method) and advanced meal preparation (including more substantial snacks) and greater food-pairing methodology (such as carbs and fiber with proteins or fat.)

To further manage Cheslun’s diabetic and performance needs, greater emphasis was placed on blood sugar and sweat rate monitoring alongside the addition of electrolyte containing beverages and nutritional supplements, including a daily multivitamin, vitamin D3, fish oil and beet powder (for running performance.)


Coinciding with his nutrition modifications Cheslun was evaluated by Dr. Jason McLaughlin, physical therapist and functional movement expert at Chain Effect. While treating his shoulder pain, Dr. McLaughlin would also assess his fitness and strength, implementing a functional movement training program to improve his running form, speed and endurance.

The most frequent cause of chronic shoulder pain is dysfunctional shoulder mechanics; meaning the shoulder is not moving properly in the joint. To improve these mechanics Jason used a combination of dry needling, joint mobilization and postural retraining to improve thoracic (upper back) mobility as well as activation of Cheslun’s scapular muscles (or posterior chain.) Jason’s treatment plan was designed to decrease overall pain and normalize Cheslun’s movement patterns, creating fluidity of motion and greater ability to build strength.

Focus then shifted to weight loss and improving strength while improving running mechanics. Dr. McLaughlin introduced Cheslun to a full body, functional weight training regime that incorporated hip hinging, knee hinging with push and pull exercises. Emphasizing specific deficits, like glute strength and single leg stability and balance, was a priority.

By developing a proper foundation for Cheslun, he was able to quickly make gains by improving speed, endurance and strength. He was able to advance to more dynamic exercises, including heavy sled pulls, single leg squats, step ups and lunge progressions with weights (running faster and farther and feeling better while doing it.)


Through the consistent and successful implementation of Nutrition Counseling, Physical Therapy and Performance Training from Chain Effect’s licensed experts, Cheslun’s goals were far exceeded.

First, his Blood Sugar Levels dropped 0.4% in 3 months. His diet quality improved immensely and so did his recovery post training through anti-inflammatory food selections. This was the result of adding higher quality whole grains, lean high-quality protein and more varied fruits and vegetables. This higher-carbohydrate diet was also able to support his endurance performance while still maintaining stable blood sugars.

Additionally, Cheslun gained 11 pounds of muscle while dropping inches in waist circumference. He optimized his hydration status, delayed perceived time to fatigue and improved his overall performance, strength and energy levels.

Cheslun saw marked improvement in his (now pain-free) running habits, finishing in the top 100 out of over 800 other athletes during a recent 14-mile race.

Cheslun remains committed and diligent to his strategy; using Chain Effect’s gym membership and active recovery services to stack workouts contributing to his long term personal and athletic development.