Sharon Haarhoff is a South African medical services worker best known as the winner of the first season of the e.tv reality competition The Biggest Loser South Africa, which aired from 7 January to 14 April, 2008.
Sharon made it to the final three with John Dokos and Asanda Siloti. In the finale on Monday 14 April, she was revealed to have lost not only the most weight in the competition but also the highest percentage of body weight.
Before appearing on the show her weight was 135.1kg - by the finale her weight was 73.3kg, a weight loss of 61.8kg, or 45.74% of her body weight.
She won R250,000 and a R10,000 gift voucher from Truworths.
“Of course it feels great to win," she said, "But more than that, I feel so proud of myself for accomplishing my dream. All the other 13 competitors were worthy and for me to have beaten them took a lot of blood, sweat and tears.
“My whole focus and aim right from day one was to win. I had to have a winner’s mindset. I never want to get back to 135kg! Living a healthy lifestyle is no longer something I have to painstakingly do, it is now a part of me.”
Weight at the start of the show
The Biggest Loser team
Weight at the finale
Total weight lost
Total body percentage lost
Biggest Loser Profile
Sharon lives in East London and has a diverse range of impressive and very special skills. They range from emergency medicine practice, to advanced driving skills, to basic fire fighting.
In addition, she has studied management assistance, advertising and public relations. She pursued a job in emergency medicine, as she wanted a job where there was a high level of satisfaction.
“I felt a deep desire to help people who are suffering with pain,” she says. “At the end of each day I know that what I did counted and made a difference in someone’s life.
“There is incredible personal and career fulfilment in reaching out and assisting people when they experience a dark moment in their lives.”
She finds loud and brash people highly irritating, especially those who think that they have done everything bigger and better than everybody else has. “I also don’t tolerate bullies who go out of their way to be mean and nasty.”
Her favourite meal consists of roast lamb, roast potatoes, rice and vegetables. “Don’t forget the gravy!” Oh, and she also likes chips and onion rings.
What will motivate her to lose weight? “I am in the prime of my life and missing out on so many opportunities because I am overweight.
“Men do not give me a second glance. I cannot visit the Cango Caves, because I am too large. I cannot even go skydiving, something I really want to do.
“Most of all, I just want to look normal. I no longer want to stand out in a crowd just because I am so unfit and overweight. I am always out of breath because I am so big; not a good thing in my line of work.
“The competition would also really motivate me, because with so many people watching, I could not possibly take such an opportunity and let it go to waste.
“I want to prove to myself and others that I can take control of my eating. I also do not want to be last. I am too competitive for that. I want to be a thin winner.”
She says the best thing about being smaller is too look feminine again. “The last time I could wear a dress and look good in it was about 10 years ago. I want to so badly to look sexy in a summer dress.
I would love to change my eating habits. I know it is a clich, but I need to learn how to like broccoli, Brussels sprouts and green beans. I am so focused on eating refined foods that I have lost my taste for wholesome vegetables.”Related ArticlesSharon Wins The Biggest Loser SA!Biggest Loser SA: Before And After PicsThe Biggest Loser SA Weekly Recaps