How did I hear about the VFM Program & Crissi Carvalho
How did I feel before the VFM Program? Was I happy with myself? Did I feel healthy?
I felt disgusted with myself, I was overweight, very tired, always hungry and felt sick (upset stomach) a lot. Every time I ate more than a handful I had to have a sleep. I was definitely not happy with myself (to the point of depression) and didn’t feel even remotely healthy. I have always been very fit and strong but since a change of job (from very physical to sedentary) in December of last year I had put on 10kg
Were you vegan before starting the VFM program?
What were your goals when signing up? Did you achieve them? If not, why?
My main goal was to lose weight, until Crissi started talking about inner health and that motivated me to try to get my health under control. I have Crohn’s and was on large amounts of medication, so not good for the body in the long run.
Overall yes, I have achieved results! I can now comfortably eat 20-25g of fibre per day without feeling like I need a nap whereas before I would need a nap after every meal and could only manage about 10g of fibre per day. I have lost 5% body fat since I started the program and plan to continue with the routine as I still have about 5-7% more to go. I had doubts half way through the program as things weren’t moving fast enough for my liking but I have learnt that losing weight super fast is not good for your body at all and doing it this way I will be able to maintain it long term
How quickly/slowly did you start seeing results?
I definitely felt stronger within 2 weeks but probably took 3 weeks to see a difference but around the end of week 4 I could notice a real difference and so could my workmates.
Are you now closer to your goals? How did Crissi help you achieve those goals?
Yes, I have lost almost half of my goal body fat % and even more importantly I don’t feel like crap every day – AND I am almost completely off the Crohn’s medication!!!! THANK YOU SO MUCH!!!!!
Crissi was a real support figure for me, I am prone to self-destructive/self hating behaviour and when I started doubting myself Crissi was there every time to encourage me and to tell me to keep going and that I could do it. I don’t live near any family and don’t have much of a support structure so that was so important for me. Her coaching sessions and MFP tracking and even out of the blue Facebook message sessions were the reason I kept going when I wanted to give up
Has your VFM program changed your life? How? What about family & friends lives?
Oh definitely, it is such a huge relief not to feel sick every time I eat, and know that I am doing something to improve my health rather than live on toxic medications for the rest of my life, which is what the health professionals told me I would have to do. I can now spend more time doing the things I enjoy rather than being at home in bed feeling sick. This is the beginning of my new life where I look after and appreciate my body. My family and friends have noticed a big change in my attitude (more positive) so I don’t think they worry about me as much now – especially my mum who often copped the brunt of my depression/sadness – it’s a big relief for her
Three key points you have learned from your VFM program
- Never give up, if you keep going you will eventually see the light at the end of the tunnel
- Be open to new ideas – I can change the health of my body myself no matter what the health professionals say
- Appreciate your body – it is the only one you get so make the most of what you have.
Will you continue to follow the VFM lifestyle? Will you continue to be vegan?
Have other people noticed changes in you? Have you inspired them?
Yes definitely, as mentioned people have noticed the change in my attitude, and appearance – even one of the personal trainers at my gym commented how much better I was looking and we got talking about being vegan as a result and he is now cutting down on meat, has asked me for info like vegan sources of protein and iron and has even borrowed my copy of The China Study.
Did you enjoy the program?
Yes definitely. I really enjoyed the workouts, as they were different to what I had done previously. I enjoyed feeling like part of the group as well and having some support and looking at the Facebook page to get different ideas/discuss questions. The meal plan was great too and has led to a big change in my health. I also really enjoyed the look on the faces of the men at my gym when they see a girl doing squats and deadlifts (I don’t think they see that too often)!
Would I recommend it?
Yes definitely, not only is it great for health and fitness but also promoting veganism.
Have I set any new goals for the future?
Yes – I want to get down to 18% body fat and be in the best shape of my life, continue to improve my health through good eating and be completely medication free.
Other things I loved about the VFM Program
I think the best thing for me was the support. Having someone to encourage me when I needed it as I don’t have much from anywhere else, and feeling part of a group of people all with similar goals. I enjoyed learning new things (about health) and starting to learn to appreciate myself a bit more. It’s definitely a great program. I recommend to everyone and I will hopefully be back early next year to do it again.