Dear Weight Watchers,
This on-again, off-again affair we’ve had for 7 years isn’t working for me any longer – I need to move on. We’ve seen some good times (getting under 300 pounds….3 times). But, we’ve also seen our fair share of bad times. However, I’m not leaving you because of our past ~ I’m leaving you because you just aren’t what I need anymore.
I’m doing great tracking my food, I literally write down everything I eat. The things I eat are healthy 90% of the time – and made of ingredients I can pronounce. I can’t say the same for your Weight Watchers bars or shakes. I am drinking tons of water. I haven’t had coffee in 15 days (not that I’m counting). Oh and I am taking 3 (or more!) barre n9ne classes a week and doing 2-3 cardio workouts at the gym. I’m finally back on track and have my shiz together. Huzzah!
So, why does this mean I need to move on? Sure I enjoy your mobile app, and I like the accountability of having someone else weigh me in. But, I can’t take the snarky attitudes of the “leaders” at my former WW Center. Saturday morning I walked in to weigh in high on life (and a sweaty Saturday morning barre method workout! Thanks Julianna!). I knew I had aced this weigh-in like a spelling test in 5th grade. To my shock I was up 4.4 pounds (adding to the 2.2 pounds I gained during my amazing week last week) for a total GAIN of 6.6 pounds in 2 weeks. I found this impossible and before I could even begin to recount my week (water! veggies! limited carbs! 6 workouts!!) the “leader” said “Up again – looks like you need to try harder honey” in a condescending little song-song voice then snapped her gum and went back to chatting with her friend. You have no idea how close I was to jumping over that counter, grabbing her 80′s wave perm and screaming “I AM TRYING MY ASS OFF!”. Lucky for you, I’m classier than that.
This isn’t my first encounter with unsupportive, dismissive “leaders” at WW centers. I’m sick of not being a person. I’m sick of standing in a queue waiting to weigh-in like a bunch of cattle getting tagged. I’m sick of not being able to discuss my week with ANYONE (besides my friend Layne when we go together). I need more. I need someone who wants to hear about my week and help me figure out what could be wrong rather than shuffle me off into a meeting room to listen to whiner mommies talk about cupcakes and stealing from their kids happy meals.
If I actually did gain 6.6 pounds in 2 weeks following a super healthy diet and exercise routine I would say something is WRONG. Seriously wrong! Shouldn’t someone take me aside and ask what’s going on? Shouldn’t someone care more for the $39.95 a month I pay???
Sidenote: I’m going to purchase a new scale tomorrow and confirm if your scales are indeed accurate. I suspect they are not. My nice dressy pants fit – they didn’t fit a month ago. That’s progress, not magic.
I stayed when I realized I would realistically never be a lifetime member (my “ideal goal weight” is 125 according to you. I’m 5’4″ and have hips the size of a hoola hoopa – pretty sure 125 isn’t in the cards). I stayed when you changed points to this silly “Points Plus 2012″ and I knew it didn’t make sense to eat more. I stayed when your “leaders” would push crappy pre-packaged snacks and microwave popcorn over fruits and veggies.
But, the proverbial straw that broke this fat kid’s back was that snarky leader. I’m not going to continue supporting a business that doesn’t encourage me to succeed. I was on the fence all weekend about my decision to cancel my membership (which I promptly did at 10:15am after walking in from the world’s most ridiculous weigh-in!). Until I went over to K8′s kickass page on Facebook and got a little reassurance:
I don’t NEED Weight Watchers anymore! She’s right! I’m smart. I know what I need (good carbs, protein, veggies, fruits, water) and I know what I need to do (move my ass, destress, stay off coffee and desserts). Why CAN’T I do it myself? Oh right, because for some silly reason I have this idea that I need someone running my life. I need to be a member of some group – something bigger than myself. Well, I’m wrong. I don’t need this anymore, and I’m quitting this madness. For the last time.
If you find it tough to get over me, I’d suggest checking out this fantastic book by Greg Behrendt:
My favorite quote? I’m glad you asked! “So many of us find ourselves saying “BUT HE WAS SO GREAT!” Yes, and the people who got on the Titanic thought they were going on vacation. Things changed and it’s important to remember that they did.“
I’ve changed, you haven’t. Peace out!
A few weeks back I blogged about joining WW and how excited I was to see Jennifer Hudson’s transformation. My friend Cecilia’s comment has stuck with me, and prompted this blog post.
She said: “To be honest, sometimes I feel really jaded about famous people losing weight. They can afford the top cooks and trainers. Of course they can lose so much weight between September 09 and April 10!“
She had a fabulous point. It got me thinking about the celebrity endorsement and why it holds so much weight (pun intended!). Why do celebrity endorsements even work? Do people buy something because their favorite singer or actor use it? I don’t, but I know I am not the majority. On the flip-side, if a celebrity you HATE endorses something, are you less likely to purchase it?
*For the record- I did NOT joined WW b/c I saw Jennifer Hudson’s results. I was rejoining anyways, and was commenting on how good she looks as their new endorsee.
The first celebrity backing a weight-loss plan I can remember is of course Fergie, Duchess of York. She was always the pretty red-head with the nice accent on the WW commercials. However, a recent picture shows she’s gained some weight. She hasn’t been a spokeswoman for WW for a few years, and I wonder if her motivation to stay thin has dwindled?
I’ve never tried Jenny Craig (the idea of eating pre-packaged food grosses me out the door, sorry) - but they have had a plethora of celebrity endorsements. In the late 90′s there was Monica Lewinsky – followed by Kirstie Alley (who I ABHOR) and then Valerie Bertinelli. Most recently they’ve had Sara Rue, Jason Alexander and Carrie Fisher.
Why do I hate Kirstie Alley so much? Have you ever watched “Fat Actress“? She’s pathetic. She encompasses everything I hate about fat stereo-types. She’s lazy, she whines non-stop and she loves fast food. I couldn’t even make it through one whole episode. She also can’t seem to keep her weight off. She has trainers, she has cooks and yet she can’t lose weight? It makes you wonder if she really wants it. If you REALLY want something, you won’t let anything deter you from succeeding. I distinctly remember her saying she had lost 75 pounds at one point and thinking “Bitch please, you don’t look 75 pounds thinner!” Apparently I’m not the only one who was suspicious of her weight-loss b/c in 2008 Jenny Craig dropped her like a hot potato.
I have no problems with Jason, Sara or Valerie – they lost reasonable amounts of weight, and if they followed the plan – good for them. It didn’t make me want to run out and try Jenny Craig, but that’s just my prerogative. I’m sure plenty of people joined based on the success they had.
However, Carrie Fisher makes my blood boil.
Have you seen her new commercial? The world is a hostile place for a fat person? There comes a point when you can’t stand not leaving the house anymore?! Shut up. Please just shut up. You sound ridiculous. At my heaviest I will admit, I didn’t love going out to socialize, and I didn’t feel comfortable in every situation – but I lived my life. I held down a full-time job, a social life etc. I didn’t lock myself in the house like a leper because I was fat. It infuriates me to think people around the globe will see this commercial and say “Oh if Carrie Fisher is fat and doesn’t have the house, maybe I shouldn’t either?!”. Sigh.
As a side rant – Carrie reports her weight to be 180 pounds. I’m almost double that….and I’ve lost 90 pounds! I would kill to be 180 pounds, I wouldn’t lock myself in the house and boo-hoo about how mean society is.
So instead of wanting to try Jenny Craig, they’re latest choice in celebrity endorsement has caused me to hate them.
Now, take a different kind of celebrity endorsement – Oprah. Anything she touches turns to gold, she is truly America’s sweetheart. But, she has struggled with her weight publicly for as long as I can remember. She has tried a million diets, and a million exercise plans and had varying success. But, all along America has been there – loving her. She succeeds? Hell yeah! We knew you could. She fails? It’s ok – she’s human like we are! I don’t have strong feelings either way on Oprah, but I will say that I have never tried something just because she was doing it. I do find the “Oprah effect” interesting though.
So, are you more likely to try a diet or exercise regimen because a celebrity has endorsed it?
I have dubbed Weight Watchers as “Fat Club” because really, it’s a club of fat people trying to be less fat. I think it’s kind of funny to say I’m “off to fat club!” and I was delighted to find this graphic from the 80′s:
I kinda want a shirt with that logo on it!
Anyways, I had my second WW weigh-in yesterday and I am down another 4 pounds! That’s a total loss of 7 pounds in 2 weeks, which makes me really happy. I’m still heavier on their scale then I am on mine (348 on their, 338 on mine) – but I’m happy to see those numbers going down. Especially since I only exercised ONCE last week. I’m honestly loving the new plan – I don’t find myself ravenously hungry – and I am much more conscious of my eating. I’m definitely happy I rejoined. Oh, and I found a leader I like! Hooray!
This weeks handout covered “why do we eat?” – something I’ve personally explored a million times. I’m bored, I’m happy, I’m sad….I eat. I’m more in tune with my emotions than I used to be, but I still definitely associate eating with feelings. Weird I suppose. Do “normal people” associate food with feelings?
The topic also included “reframing” a situation. The phrase “Don’t give up what you want most for what you want at the moment” came into play and while I find it a little cheesy, it is true. So often I will forgo my personal goals for cheesecake or crème brûlée. Some of the “tips” given were a little cheesy. “If you find yourself craving ice cream – go for a walk!”. It’s not that it’s not a good idea, it’s just not exactly revolutionary. Ya know? Tell me something I haven’t heard a millions times before, and I might be more receptive to the cheesy quotes, haha.
In other news, I have exactly 100 days until my vacation – eeeeep!!
I have so many things I would LOVE to wear to SF (including the aforementioned capris and espadrilles) – I decided to hang a few of the items on the outside of my armoire as a motivation. They are the first thing I see when I wake up – and the last thing I see before I go to bed. I still wish I could make a countdown calendar like in “I Used to be Fat” – but I’m way too lazy to sit here and write out 100 numbers on giant posterboard. I guess I could use funky colored paper? Hmmm….perhaps a project for tonight while I watch “Heavy”!
I decided on NYE that I would do bi-monthly weigh-ins instead of my normal monthly weigh-in.
I have been attempting the 10 Days On/1 Day cheating…and it’s REALLY hard, I can’t lie. I have more cravings knowing I can’t have something for 9 more days than I did before. I’m not sure it’s going to work for me, but I’m giving it a second shot starting today. I’ve switched out my too sweet morning coffee for a regular iced coffee (I didn’t even think to check how much sugar was in my iced mocha….the answer is a LOT). I’ve made little changes, but I’m certainly not see big results just yet.
At my last weigh-in I was 334….and today I am 336. I’ve gained two pounds. I ate LESS bad stuff, and I gained two pounds! Meh. I know, 2 pounds is nothing etc. But….I’m upset. I’ve been to the gym several times, I’ve been getting extra bouts of walking in whenever I can etc.
So I started looking back at what I have been eating – and overall, I’m just eating too much. I might not be eating ice cream and potato chips, but I’m eating twice the portions I should and I know better. Sidenote: knowing you’ve eaten TOO MUCH healthy food really is a kick in the pants.
I lamented about my overeating to my brother, who is also working towards losing weight. I suggested we rejoin Weight Watchers – and try their new Points Plus Program. I have had success on WW – when I’ve given it 100%. When I just half-ass it, I have failed.
So, next Sunday we are joining together – and I’ll be posting my weight here every Sunday after our meeting. I like weighing in on a Sunday – it sets a positive tone for your week. I also like having someone else weigh me in. I can’t make excuses, or blame the scale – I just have to accept it and move on to a better week. He’s had huge success on WW – so it’s a good plan for both of us.
I feel like diet and exercise are two sides of a scale. I’m never perfectly balanced. If I have a week where I eat great, I only exercise twice. If I exercise a bunch, I don’t eat great every day. It’s so hard to find that nice balance on the see-saw. Maybe that’s normal?
I’m more excited for WW now that I’ve found out they have apps for your phone that include mobile food trackers, exercise trackers and the ability to scan a bar-code and see how many points something is. Now, I don’t eat that much sold in a box…but it’s a really rad feature to have!
Anyone else try the new plan? How’s it working for you? I’ll write all about it once I rejoin.
One highlight of the weekend, I exercised my BUTT off yesterday. I designed a new workout that included bouts of cardio in between weights/push-up/crunch circuits and I sweat SO MUCH. I felt insanely accomplished, and I’m sore today which makes me happy. Wow….did I really just say I liked sweating and sore muscles?! Haha!Who am I?!?!
Quiet week – so I’m planning to get a workout in every day (abs, full body, circuits, just cardio) and keep mixing it up. Oh, and I’m getting a fabulous haircut on Saturday, so I’ll post some pix of my new look too!