Hi! Tell us about yourself and your training
Hi, my name is Sharon Polsky and I have worked in the fitness industry for 30 years.
I am 46 years old and I am the proud owner of UNLEASHED Women’s Fitness Studio, in Long Beach California where I service 150 weight loss clients per week; focusing on fitness classes, healthy nutrition and life coaching.
In addition to my fitness studio I coach fitness competitors and professional athletes.
I am a Pro Fitness/Bikini Competitor with Paul Dillett’s WBFF and have competed in 25 shows over 10 years; holding many different titles.
Now I have the privilege of coaching competitors; using my vast knowledge of athletic training and expertise in hormone based nutrition to ensure a safe and effective prep and earning my clients championship placements.
Describe a typical day of training
For my personal training regime I still use bodypart splits. I lift heavy 5 days per week and enjoy functional/athletic training 2 days per week.
I don’t do cardio because I control my bodyfat with nutrition.
My personal focus is on symmetry, proportions and level of condition… staying as small as I can get.
But the majority of my day isn’t focused on me. The majority of my day is focused on teaching my clients healthy eating and eating habits.
My philosophy on Weight Loss is called “Stop Getting Fatter”. Here is how it works:
- Step 1 – stop getting fatter. For 6 weeks simply maintain your current weight.
- Step 2 – take 3 weeks lose a small amount of weight example 6 to 8 lbs in 3 weeks, we call this 1 dress size.
- Step 3 – for 3 weeks maintain that weight loss. Don’t get fatter.
- Step 4 – repeat steps 2 and 3 until you achieve and maintain your desired weight.
If you face weight loss with this type of simple strategy you will lose weight and maintain it but you have to get off of the roller coaster of weight loss and weight gain.
Simply changing the mindset to maintaining your current weight instead of weight loss you will be less likely to rebound and gain weight.
This has been my strategy with my clients for years now and it works great.
Rather than focusing on weight loss or rapid weight loss I use the stop getting fatter strategy and the end results is weight loss.
Then in addition to this approach toward weight loss, I focus on the 5 fundamental building blocks of health and wellness; and teach my clients the strategies to accomplish each.
- Nutrition – Baseline Diet focusing on Blood Sugar Stabilization – 40/30/30.
- Movement – At Minimum Move every single day.
- Water – 1 Gallon of Water Per Day.
- Stress Management – Don’t avoid stress simply learn to manage the effects it has.
- Sleep – 8 hours per night – Read the book Why We Sleep by Matthew Walker.
How do you keep going and push harder?
A little over 5 Years Ago I dislocated my spine in a freak accident. All that happened was that I got out of bed and night and twisted funny.
I never thought I would be able to lift again.
It was during that time that I learned to respect my body. I focused on Yoga, lots and lots of Yoga for the last 5 years, practicing daily for an hour to two hours ever session.
My improved flexibility, mobility and strength found through yoga now allows me to lift weights again.
Yoga is not spiritual for me; it is physically challenging and I love it.
What I didn’t do during this time was wallow in self pity and eat whatever I want. I did not use this obstacle as an excuse.
I knew that if I gained weight or ate unhealthy my spine would get worse not better. I focused on losing 8 pounds of muscle and learning to make EXTREMELY healthy eating my lifestyle because my body depended on it… and guess what it worked.
People ask me all the time, why would you WANT to lose muscle? Muscle is very heavy and the excess weight was more than my spine could handle.
This wasn’t about mental strength. For me it was about common sense. If I weigh more OF COURSE my body will have to work harder so maybe I should help it out by getting smaller.
If I eat crap food OF COURSE my body will have to work harder so maybe I should help it out by eating healthier. Is this extreme, no I don’t think so.
Most fitness competitors use “Off Season” as an excuse to follow incredibly unhealthy eating behavior and they are setting themselves up to fail. This is pure self indulgence.
Common sense tells us that if we want our bodies to perform for us at an elite level, we should respect the work our bodies have done for us in the past and that we want it to do for us in the future.
This has allowed my body to heal and for the last 3 months I am now lifting heavy 5 days per week, and I do athletic/functional training 2 days per week.
This isn’t a miracle. This is my body responding to the respect I showed it during difficult times.
Instagram, @sharonpolsky - photo by Noel Daganta
How are you doing today and what does the future look like?
The last 3 months have been awesome. I never thought I would be able to lift a weight again due to my back injury and I can… so now I want to step on stage again. I have missed it so much over the last few years.
I am back with my AMAZING coach Nathan Harewood of Team Domin8 and I am looking at the WBFF World Championships in August to make my Stage Come Back.
How do you recover, rest and handle injuries?
Recovery, rest and injuries and the most challenging part of my life and my clients lives.
I want to start by saying this… doctors Suck!!! I have FINALLY found 3 doctors that are AMAZING but I went through 50 to find the right ones.
The majority of doctors told me to rest when I hurt my back. This was terrible advice.
Every time a client of mine gets hurt the first thing a doctor says is rest. This is terrible advice. They simply don’t take the time to ask the right question to actually help their patients.
For instance in my case, when I did rest the rest of my body atrophied and my back became worse. When I exercised moderately my back pain was less. Then I combined therapy and time and my back improved.
The key was movement, lots and lots of movement; combined with time and patience. I didn’t rush the process.
In the case of my clients; they are weight loss clients. They have a small injury and go to the doctor. The doctor tells them to rest (not modify but rest). The doctor doesn’t tell them what “REST” looks like, so my client does nothing for 3 to 6 weeks.
Over that time they gain weight and all of the supporting bodyparts, that support the injury get weaker. Do you think that this is good for their injury or bad?
So if you hurt your ankle go to the gym and train upper body. Keep moving. Surround yourself with people on the same journey that you are on. Be patient and accept that it takes time.
Lastly, and most importantly YOU HAVE TO SLEEP!!! Please read the book Why We Sleep by Matthew Walker.
There is no excuse for the anti-sleep lifestyle. It is the leading cause of injuries, obesity and most diseases. You will not improve your health without sleep.
This book changed my life and the lives of so many of my clients. It taught me that sleep is an integral part of health and wellness and shouldn’t be ignored like most people do.
How is your diet and what supplements do you use?
I am a strong believer in the baseline diet and blood sugar stabilization. For me baseline dieting controls my blood sugar and therefore my cravings and keeps me satiated.
In my experience with 100’s of clients they are ALWAYS on some kind of diet…but have never been baselined. They jump from the Standard American Diet (which we know is LITERALLY killing Americans) to Vegan, Keto, Paleo, Pesco, Modified Keto, Atkins, IIFYM, IF, etc.
This is insane. Healthy eating is so damn simple. You don’t even know if any of these diets are working because you never let go of the idea that you LOVE the Standard American Diet and you never transitioned to a new healthy eating lifestyle which should be the baseline diet.
The baseline diet is 40% protein, 30% carbohydrates and 30% fats. Baseline Nutrition works for EVERYBODY.
What doesn’t work is holding on to the notion that this is a diet and you will go back to eating the Standard American Diet in the future.
Now of course it is important to focus on Micro Nutrients and the quality of the foods that make up that 40/30/30 but this nutritional lifestyle works.
So the first step is changing the mind set. The second step is stopping the supplement roller coaster. There is no quick fix.
Stop spending your money on supplements, bars and shakes. Start Baseline Nutrition. If you eat high MICRO nutrient foods you don’t need supplements, so I don’t use any supplements.
What has inspired and motivated you?
I am inspired and motivated by my clients. My clients are everyday women that overcome tons of obstacles and never wallow in self pity.
They have taught me to pull myself up by my bootstraps and be grateful for the life that I have.
My worst days are better than 99% of people’s best days. I have my dream job and it is 100% because of my amazing clients who I consider my family.
This feeling have for my life allows me to overcome life’s challenges like my spine injury.
Advice for other people who want to improve themselves?
My best advice that I can give anybody and everybody about health and fitness is that GOOGLE is not an expert.
Stop googling solutions to your problems. Google is not an expert.
If you were convicted of a felony and facing life in prison would you plan your defense using google or would you hire an attorney? Stop using Google.
My second piece of advice is that Instagram is the most fraudulent platform of experts I have ever seen. I don’t blame those experts. I blame you.
Why on earth would you hire a fitness professional just because they have 1 million or more followers; or they told you how great of a coach they are?
You are CRAZY if that is the criteria you use to pick a health and wellness coach.
These people have zero credentials or have lied about their credentials making up degrees that they don’t have.
They post pictures of “Team Shoots” where most of those people aren’t paying them for nutrition or training but for Stage Presence coaching.
There is so much fraudulent behavior on Instagram today it makes me sick… but frankly it is your fault. If you didn’t hire these people without checking for ACTUAL credentials they wouldn’t do it.
So stop using Google and stop using Instagram to find coaches, trainers and nutritionists.
Find somebody that started where you are and has changed their body to where you want to be – and then ask them how they got there.
If they have used a specific coach for a significant period of time then that’s the coach you want.
Are you taking on clients right now?
I have 5 different programs that new clients can choose from:
- Online Coaching for Fitness/Bikini Competitors – I only take 10 per year.
- Online Coaching for Nutrition and Weight loss – Open Enrollment.
- Studio classes at my fitness studio UNLEASHED Women’s Fitness – Memberships are Limited.
- Studio training for Weight Loss – Open Enrollment.
- One on One Personal Training – Open Enrollment.
Where can we learn more about you?
The studio phone is 562-800-0119 and my email is [email protected]