This week we met up with our most recent graduates of our ‘LIFE’ 6-month nutrition program, Brent and Dallas Monroe who share their secret’s to success (they each lost over 20 pounds, Brent nearly kicked his diet soda habits, and their family has become healthier overall) and why every other diet and weight loss attempt in the past had failed.
Dallas and Brent had both heard of the LIFE program through co-workers at each of their workplaces. They had each witnessed firsthand the success of others, and after hearing more about the program and how realistic it was, they thought it would be a good fit and decided to give it a try.
Were you nervous about trying the LIFE program?
“We really weren’t actually that nervous. We had witnessed enough success with others who had participated in the program, and we had been reassured that this wasn’t just a diet, but would actually teach us what to eat. I was at a point where I needed to figure out how to get my weight under control”. [B]
“And it did”, exclaimed Brent, “before beginning the program, we thought that we were healthy. We thought that we were trying to lose weight. But we really weren’t, and this program taught us that. We’ve learned that many ‘healthy choices’ are misleading. We had tried diets in the past, but we found that anytime we stopped a diet, we gained all of the weight back.”
“After trying Charlie’s in the past I didn’t want to eat – I would have rather not eaten than had to eat another fake meal. With the LIFE program, I was over the moon to be eating real food, and I couldn’t believe that I was eating (homemade) Nacho’s for lunch during the second week.”
Give us a picture of your life before starting the program.
Many days I wasn’t eating breakfast and my first meal of the day would be 2:30pm, which wreaked havoc on my metabolism. I had no sense of consistency or moderation. When I finally would have time to eat; I would eat everything because I was so hungry [B].
We love that with the LIFE program, you aren’t restricted and don’t have to cut anything out. You really learn how to eat in a balanced way, and by eating more often, you really aren’t craving anything either [D].
Since learning about moderation and consistency, both Brent and Dallas have lost over 20 pounds each all while still having the freedom and flexibility to eat what they like.
Tell us about your success with the program.
“Well, I am now wearing pants I haven’t worn in 5 years… and I am able to do them up. Before, I didn’t really want to go anywhere or do anything, I just didn’t feel great. Now, I feel better overall. I have much less stomach acid (we’re not buying Pepcid is mass quantities – Dallas chimed in) and I have learned my trigger foods and to avoid them. They are just not worth it. I know what it’s like to feel good, and I don’t want to feel bad anymore (B). Plus, I find myself even tucking my shirts in and not just hiding everything”. Brent laughed.
As for Dallas, she is wearing clothes that are at least 2 sizes smaller, and has regained a significant portion of her closet that had gone untouched over the past few years.
“Mentally, I am much more confident just knowing that I have lost 20 pounds. My clothes aren’t tight or uncomfortable” Dallas exclaimed.
What tips would you share with others?
Pre-Plan in Advance:
Definitely being prepared. We can look back at our progress and tell the weeks where we pre-planned or were prepared in advance, and the weeks where we would come home after work, starving, and would eat whatever we came up with. By being more aware, you make better choices. [B]
Focus on Small Changes:
Before I never thought about having snacks at work. Now, I have a mini-fridge that is stocked with fruit, yogurt, and other healthy snacks. Before the program, I drank a lot of diet coke. They never told me I had to quit cold turkey, but encouraged me to make small changes. Instead of having two big gulps in a day, I make sure that I drink all my water, and have the occasional diet coke. The coaches don’t make you do anything, but help you to make better choices and always focus on something positive each week. [B]
I never did add in actual exercise, but I was more conscience of moving more. At work, I would walk around the school, and would be more intentional about moving during the day and it helped. This summer I went for a hike and I wasn’t winded – it was a pleasant surprise. [D]
What was your biggest realization?
The portion sizes were really eye opening. We realized what a portion size really is and the balance between different nutrients. We learned that there isn’t really ‘bad foods’, but that it’s just about eating the right foods, at the right time, in the right portion sizes.
What advice would you give to someone considering the program?
I definitely would recommend it. It makes sense, it’s a lifestyle change, but it’s not unachievable. Technically we are done the program, but we are not ‘done’ eating this way. You don’t feel restricted – you’re only restricted by your own imagination.
The coaches are so encouraging and always gave us something positive to focus on and left us with a plan to make the next week better and to help us continue to be successful.