One Girl’s Gritty Quest to Finding Long-Term, Sustainable Fitness
Akanksha Sharma spent years trying every trending diet and workout routine on the market but found that nothing was able to help her keep off excess weight for good. It wasn’t until she came across MSF that she realized that there is in fact a way to stay fit in the long-run, and that is by equipping yourself with the right guidance and knowledge.
Many fads, but no fitness
Akanksha’s struggle began when she was in school in Delhi. As an overweight teenager, she felt isolated and judged by her peer-group. This drove her towards a series of fad diets that promised miraculous results: “You can ask me about any fad diet, I’ve done them all”. But essentially, these diets just made Akanksha starve herself and eat boring food. Not surprisingly, she was unable to sustain any of them.
Akanksha also tried all kinds of workouts – dance, cardio, Zumba, yoga, martial arts – but none of these brought her long-term results. There were tons of quick-fix fitness packages that promised things like ‘Lose 5 kgs in 3 weeks’ but no one offered a long-term solution. By the time Akanksha was in college, her weight was constantly fluctuating.
“Things reached a point where I would feel guilty about eating cake on my own birthday! I started wearing black to hide my body shape.”
But she didn’t give up! Akanksha signed up with a US-based online trainer. She enjoyed the workouts but the food was just too unfamiliar. As a working professional, it was hard for Akanksha to figure out her macros, and plan her meals all on her own.
So when Akanksha moved to Mumbai for work, she started eating meals provided by some ‘healthy’ dabba companies. But she found that the dabbas always left her feeling hungry, as a result of which she would end up ‘cheating’ on her diet.
A macros-based diet that is filling, delicious & healthy
That’s when Akanksha thought to herself, “There must be someone in India who gives macros-based diets.” She started searching online, and in March 2019, signed up for lunch and dinner with MSF meals.
“I noticed that the food always comes on time; it is always fresh. There is always variety – I used to get so bored with those ‘healthy’ Dabba meals.”
While with ‘healthy’ dabbas, the quantities had always seemed too small, with MSF meals Akanksha was worried she was eating too much: “I even sent Miten a mail in the first week asking him if he was sure about the quantity. He assured me it was as per my macros.”
Within the first week, Akanksha’s energy levels improved. By the fourth-week people were telling her she had lost weight. She had been blaming Mumbai weather for her oily skin and hair fall, but both problems surprisingly got solved after she started eating MSF meals!
“MSF meals are the most hygienic, fresh and tasty food. It was the first time that I did not feel starved on a diet. And I honestly haven’t cheated on it a single day. The best part is that Miten also eats the same food that he gives his clients, so I know he keeps a tab on the quality.”
A workout routine that is fun & gets you fit
When the 5th MSF Transformation Challenge came by in June 2019, Akanksha thought, “Let’s try Miten’s workouts as well”. Akanksha found the workouts challenging – but in a good way: “He had a lot of innovative routines; his classification of muscle groups was different, and things were different every week. One time Miten sent me a weight-free home workout. I was reluctant to try it because I was used to weighting training, but ended up really liking it! Now I really appreciate his attitude of experimenting, in his own workouts and for his clients.”
“I feel my strength has really gone up, and also to an extent my flexibility. Like the other day for fun, I tried the Chakrasan and I was up in the first attempt! I actually look forward to the workouts because they are so unique. I have learned a lot more workouts and variations. So much so that, some people in the gym copy me!”
By the end of the Challenge, Akanksha didn’t lose a lot of weight but went down by 2 whole dress sizes! “I have a long way to go, but the compliments are coming. People are telling me you have lost weight.” Akanksha had initially been concerned about her weight not budging, “I would send Miten panic-stricken emails at all hours. He told me not to obsess over the number on the weighing scale. He explained that fat was getting replaced by muscle, and making me look toned.”
Why a good online trainer is better than an absentee personal trainer
As someone who used to be sceptical of online trainers, Akansha now feels that good online trainers like Miten are in fact better because gym trainers are often mentally absent while being physically present.
“Miten explains the plan. If you question it, he gives you a reason. If someone gives me a logical reason behind something, I can implement it for life. He is also super patient, super prompt and always ready to share his knowledge without holding back. And apart from the workout and diet plans, the MSF Blogs were super helpful too. I have read a few that have really helped me a lot.”
As a person who has suffered from hurtful body-shaming, Akanksha was greatly impacted when Miten posted an unflexed photo of himself on social media to show that no one looks perfect all the time, even a trainer. It taught her not to let those ‘perfect’ Instagram shots deflate her confidence.
Finding confidence, fulfilment & joy!
“I feel happy with myself and it doesn’t have to do with how I look but how good I feel. I thank MSF for introducing me to fitness as a mindset. I think the goal of the challenge isn’t just losing weight or looking good. It’s more than that. For me, it signifies being more mindful of my food and my body.”
Akanksha shares one of the many insights she has gained, “It has taken me 15 years to put on this weight, so I can’t expect it to go in 15 days. But also, with time and effort, you can achieve whatever you want. It is important to not be hard on oneself. Just keep showing up and believing in yourself.”
Feeling inspired by Akansha’s amazing transformation story? Then why not begin your own transformation journey today! Check out all MSF Transformation Plans