Sharon recently participated in my First Steps to Fasting program. She had such amazing success and she agreed to be interviewed in the hopes of inspiring and educating others.
I hope you enjoy the interview as much as I do.
1) Sharon, How did you look and feel before your weight loss journey?
I wasn’t happy with how I looked and felt a little disgusted with myself if I’m honest. I had lost around 35kg several years back (over a couple of years, not all in one go!) and about 12 had crept back on.
How could I let this happen and what if it all came back?
I wasn’t particularly unhealthy or hugely overweight yet, but I do have PCOS which is symptomatic of insulin resistance and I know I have to watch it as I’m at risk of Type II diabetes if I don’t keep on top of things.
2) Had you tried to lose weight and get healthier previously?
I have struggled with my weight all my life and have been ‘trying to lose weight’ on and off since 1983!
I have always found it very hard to lose and very easy to put on. If I am perfect with my eating all the time, I can keep it in check, but it’s really difficult and I slip up… and then the weight creeps back on.
I had actually done a form of fasting previously almost by accident. The weight come off, but people kept telling me it was so unhealthy. Unfortunately I listened to them and went back to eating every 3 hours or so, and the weight came back on.
3) What prompted your decision to try the First Steps to Fasting program?
1 ) I trust Chriss, she doesn’t do gimmicks – if Chriss says something works, I know she’s done a lot of research.
2 ) It immediately made sense to me, looking back on how I’d easily lost weight in the past doing a similar type of thing.
3 ) My life is so much busier now than when I originally did Chriss’ fat flush program. I now work full time and study part-time (and I’m a mother of 3!) – back in the day I only worked part time and wasn’t studying. I now don’t have much time for exercise, shopping, cooking or meal planning. I knew that if I tried a traditional program that I would fail, as I just don’t have the time or brain space to make a real effort.
This looked easy for me . I knew I could do it.
Become your own success story.
4) Tell us a bit about your journey
I found it easier than most might, having experimented with this kind of thing before. I jumped fully into it from the start, no warm up, because I was keen to get results right away.
About a week in, I found that my cravings had lessened and my hunger levels normalised.
I took this to mean that perhaps I was becoming less insulin resistant, so I did a little experiment. As I mentioned to you before, I’m on the Pill (even though my tubes are tied!) to control acne irregular cycles due to PCOS/IR. I’m not thrilled about the side effects of being on the Pill long-term (I have pigmentation and the Pill makes it worse), so I usually try to have a break of two weeks instead of one at the end of the hormone pills. Usually by a week and a half, I’m starting to break out again. This time I went three weeks with no Pill and did not break out. I started using the Pill again, as I was worried I would eventually break out and it takes weeks for it to clear up. It’s a little early to make sweeping claims yet without some research on other people, but I honestly believe that this program could reverse my Insulin Resistance and perhaps even diabetes.
Back to the journey… usually about three weeks in, I go through a ‘flat’ spot where weight loss slows down, it feels all too difficult and I’m in danger of chucking it in. Not so this time. I didn’t really feel that I was doing a ‘program’, this feels like something that I can continue indefinitely with no real impact on my life. I want to keep on with it and am excited about the continuing results.
Become your own success story.
5) What do you like best about it?
So many things!
* Not having to use willpower every day of my life is a huge thing. It’s really easy to limit yourself when you think ‘it’s just for today, I can have anything I want tomorrow’.
* Not having to think about food all day every day. On traditional ‘diets’, between meal planning, shopping, cooking/preparing and eating – food is on your mind ALL day. And the more you think about food, the more you want it and want what you feel you shouldn’t have.
* It is EASY. No meal plans. No shopping for weird ingredients. No cooking different meals for yourself and your family (on fasting days, I only eat dinner, and I eat exactly what I make for everyone else). It is perfect for busy people, there is really NO excuse why you can’t, as it is actually less effort than ‘normal’ life.
* It is flexible. You can change the fasting days around your social commitments. If you really pig out one day, you can add an extra fasting day (I did this in week three when I felt I’d overeaten on a couple of days and it got me back on track).
* You don’t HAVE to exercise. Of course the results will be better if you do (and you should exercise for reasons other than weight loss), BUT you will still get great results even if you don’t. I did virtually no exercise over the month and my results were still better than what I’d achieved in the past following a traditional diet program combined with significant amounts of almost daily heavy exercise. So for the couch potatoes out there, this is their dream program.
* Cravings subside and hunger levels become normal. You really CAN eat what you want to, because after doing this for a while, you actually don’t WANT to stuff your face with crap or overeat. You start to have a ‘normal’ relationship with food; you eat when hungry and eat the amount you need – then forget about food for the rest of the time. Many of us have no idea what this is like as our reality has forever been an unhealthy relationship with food.
* If you do have IR/hormonal issues, this program seems to alleviate the symptoms somewhat
6) How do you look and feel now?
I have lost 6kgs and fit back into my jeans !!
I am starting to fit into clothes that I have not been able to wear for two years. Other clothes are becoming too big. A few people have noticed and commented (I have not told many people what I am doing). I still feel like I have a little way to go, but I am confident that I can do it.
I feel that I have hope!
Until now I have accepted that if I want to maintain a normal weight, it will be a constant struggle for me. I now feel that I can do this easily and maintain this lifestyle long-term with minimal effort. The sense of relief I feel is amazing, it’s like a load I’ve been carrying for many years has been lifted.
7) What advice would you give others wanting to try it?
If you’re umming and ahhing about whether this is for you, just try it!
It’s so much easier than you might think and the results can be amazing. Even if you find it’s not something you wish to continue with, you will learn tactics that you can incorporate into your life that will benefit you.
8) What benefit did you receive from the coaching program compared to going it alone?
Awesome Sharon !!!
Become your own success story.
- Join First Steps to Fasting
- Claire’s 20kg weight loss by eating less 2 days per week
- I interviewed 1000’s of people on what they liked best about fasting