Ok, I need to lose weight and I’m finally ready to do something about it.
In the fall of 2009, a friend told me about a weight loss program that was working for her. I let my skepticism hold me back from saying more than “That’s nice” until May 2010 when several mutual friends lost weight and raved about the program. So, long after I might have lost the 70+ pounds, I emailed her and them for some information. That program is Ideal Protein, their website is easy to find through any search engine. Not paying me, not going to link.
I wasn’t thrilled to discover that Ideal Protein is a powdered protein program. Horrors of the protein diet results of Ms. Winfrey and other public figures came to mind. I’ve been known to be somewhat of a snob about such things — fresh and organic is best, I hate powdered, sweetened crap, etc. My friends assured me that the food was tolerable and that the program was manageable.
They all had coaches, but I wasn’t enthused at the prospect of driving all over hell’s half acre through the traffic-jammed maze of shrines to Our Lady of Road Construction that the Greater Toronto Area calls a road network. [/rant] Off I went to hire myself a coach.
Finding a coach
Figuring the Ideal Protein program might be inconvenient in and of itself, I don’t want to be trekking weekly to an inconvenient location. I’m on my own to find a coach whose location suits me better. After tracking down the program’s website (just run the name together and add the dot com), I click and click and click to find a “Find a coach” or a “Store” or a “How to get started” link.
Aside: Since I first found the site, there’s been a spiffy design change. Despite that fresh new look, the clinic locator link is still unfortunately buried. Huh?
This will turn out to be the first of my confusing experiences with Ideal Protein: Why would a business with products and services to sell want to make it difficult for you to get the product? As Spock would say, “Highly illogical, Captain.”
Almost reaching the “Fuck it” line (my relatively low limit for frustration with such stupidity), I see a “Clinic Locator” link on the Contact Us page. To my chagrin, it isn’t a simple list. It’s some web-designer’s interactive onanistic oeuvre requiring entry and re-entry [snerks and snorts allowed here] of a postal code to get a referral to 1 distributor/clinic. You’re supposed to be able to get two referrals through this process. On a retry it doesn’t remember my postal code. I only succeed in finding other locations by using multiple browsers (blue e, ‘fox, shiny metal, and a few others) or after clearing the cache and cookies in my browser.
Give me a list people! I can read, and I know my local geography, cripes. Maybe this weight loss program and website were designed by morons for morons. Not a good sign.
I find a location that’s actually convenient — well placed along my daily commute. Sweet! There’s only a repeat of the company information on the clinic’s website about the program. Bitter! So, I call to make an appointment and reach a staffer who doesn’t know what I’m talking about. She says that she’ll have to have someone else call me back. Thirty minutes later I get a call back and after some fiddling with schedules, I book an appointment for almost two weeks out. Now to get some more information, laptop and Google skills at the ready.