I recently received this awesome email from an amazing AltShifter, Rochelle, and I promptly harassed her into letting me share it with you. I’ve had the pleasure of meeting Rochelle in real life. Her story is so common and her success is so inspiring. I hope it helps you.
I have a history of dieting (just about everything you have ever heard of) for as long as I remember. Seriously, I do not remember a time when I wasn’t being compared to others and having expectations to be thin or thinner. Appearance was (and still is) always hugely important to my Mother. However, I was also almost always told to “clean my plate” while sitting at a giant home-cooked-Italian meal. I remember sitting at the table crying because I didn’t want to eat something on my plate, but was told I couldn’t get up until I did. So I did.
I grew up with an older sister who was just naturally tiny. The “eat anything stay tiny and cute type.” So I was compared to her, and compared myself to her, and tried hard to be as tiny and cute as she was. Never mind that she is 5’1″ and I am 5’8″. I would starve myself all day long and then go home so hungry I would gorge on white bread with homemade spaghetti sauce, or a couple of bowls of cereal or the like, and then sit down to dinner later in the evening, too. My Mom would also make dessert or buttery popcorn after dinner and I would eat that too. My Dad would sometimes watch me and then make comments like, “you know eating late at night makes you fat.”
I don’t mean to dig on my parents, I just want to explain my background a bit so you know where I am coming from. I also had one mega-crappy boyfriend after another. One in particular who was thin and not very good looking who made himself feel better by putting me down — saying things like “those jeans would look much nicer if they were a size 6.” One time he saw a cute and tiny woman walking up the stairs ahead of us and he said to me “now that’s what a real woman looks like.” I was by no means fat when I was with him, but I sure thought I was fat, stupid, ugly and worthless. Fortunately I woke up one day and decided enough of that S*%t and I got out. Another boyfriend that I had used to come watch me play basketball in high school and would yell “Go Moose” at me while I ran up and down the court. I guess I was drawn to what I was used to. Looking back I can hardly believe that I put up with the things that I did. But I had some pretty major self esteem issues, as you can probably imagine.
Fast forward, I have been married to a super great man, Ray, now for going on 30 years. He is always very supportive of whatever I want to do. I have continued my diet rollercoaster while being married to Ray, so he is used to me going on a program, getting results, falling off the program and gaining the weight back, over and over and over again. But every time I start a new program he supports me. I am good at beating myself up, though. Every time I buy a new “diet book” I tell myself, this is the last one I am ever going to buy (you should see my diet book library…sheesh!). I tell myself if this one doesn’t work then I guess I am doomed to be fat the rest of my life. Until I am somehow sold on the next best thing and buy that book, too. Lots of self-shaming and self-loathing every time I go through this cycle. The thing is, I am very interested in health and fitness. I love to read about it, study it, live it. I do not read novels, I read books about health and nutrition and fitness. I listen to audiobooks (novels) while doing things like housework and walking, but I read and study about health, nutrition and fitness. It intrigues me and I cannot seem to get enough. As a result I have suffered from too much information and have been very confused about what truly is the right thing to do.
Luckily, I came across AltShift and decided to buy that “one last book” and what do you know, it really is the last “diet book” I will ever need to buy. Unless of course you write more related to the program 🙂 I always knew there had to be a better way. I was looking for something that really truly did work, but most importantly was sustainable. It didn’t take me long on AltShift to realize that I finally found it. I can’t really even explain it, but it felt right from the get go. The program is easy to understand and easy to follow. I fell in love right away. As a matter of fact, I came to visit you at your gym only three weeks into following AltShift and I already knew then that it was the best program ever and I couldn’t wait to meet you and to spread the word. I still had that voice in my head though that said “I don’t trust you Rochelle….You have been excited about programs before and then you blew it, Rochelle….You are going to make a fool of yourself again Rochelle”….., and on and on. But one of the things that you said that stuck with me the most and that has made the biggest impact on me was when you said that if I ate something I shouldn’t have, to just pretend it didn’t happen and/or forgive myself and continue on with the next appropriate shift meal. Prior to AltShift I would chronically start over on Monday; over and over and over again! But once I heard those words I never started over again. I just continued on. Granted I never ate anything I shouldn’t have on purpose. I did accidentally however. For example, I accidentally ate a 3 shift meal on 5 shift once (yes it was an official brain fart). I didn’t even realize it until about 3/4 of the way through the meal and then kinda said something like “oh shoot!”, shrugged my shoulders, finished the meal and continued 5-shifting at the next meal. I have not had sugar (on purpose) since December and do not miss it at all; I don’t crave it, and am not tempted. I could go on and on… this is the program for me, 100%. I have never ever stuck to a program as diligently as I have for as long as I have, ever until AltShift. I amaze myself, and am very proud of myself.
I have implemented all but the sprinting into my program. I don’t actually know if I am metabolically stable enough to start. I walk (averaging 15,000 steps a day), I meditate, and as of May I work out three times a week. I struggled with working out on a regular basis as I was doing my workout in the evenings and, well, the evenings tend to get crowded with tasks and I was often times out of energy by then. I would manage one or two times a week if I was lucky. So in May (5 months into my AltShift program) I had to put my thinking cap on and I made a decision to stack the cards in my favor. Luckily I have the luxury of some flexibility in my work schedule, so I changed my hours just two days a week, on Tuesday and Thursday, to 9:30-6:00. This allows me to work out in the mornings on Tuesday and Thursdays every week, and I get my third day in on either Saturday or Sunday morning. This has been one of the best decisions of my life! What a difference it has made. I am consistent and feel amazing.
I measured more places in the beginning but just took these basic four for now. I look forward to weighing and measuring again at my one-year mark. I will measure all areas at that time and get more 360 view pics at that time, too.
Sorry for the length of this email (I actually shortened it). I am very passionate about your program and am so very thankful to you for all that you do and the wealth of knowledge that you share so openly. Thank you for all you do. I look forward to seeing you again.