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General Diet Plans and Questions General diet questions, support for various diet plans other than those listed below.

Are they really so different??

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Old 04-28-2011, 06:34 PM   #1
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Ok, so I know there is a lot of debate about Weight Watchers being an expensive way of just counting calories, and some think it's not worth it. Others think they are nothing a like, etc.

I have been doing WW for 8ish months and have lost almost 80 pounds. I love WW and have really enjoyed making a change in my life and not just dieting. However, I wonder sometimes if it would be smarter(especially financially) to just start counting calories.

Are they really so different? Have any of you done both and can give your opinion of both compared?

I don't want to "rock the boat" because I am doing so well on WW and love it. But I don't use the forums or any of the other support systems at all. I just use my own personal stuff(I am doing it online).

I guess I am wondering if it will be messing with a good thing to switch. Any opinions are welcomed.
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Old 04-28-2011, 06:49 PM   #2
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I say if you have all of the tools, quit paying and do it at home! I found it to be pretty expensive so after a few months I decided to do WW at home. I have all the books, slider, calculators, etc so why pay to go to meetings and weigh ins? I know for some people it helps keep them accountable and I totally understand wanting to pay for that reason but, if you think you can keep yourself honest without weighing in at a center and going to meetings, than try giving it a go at home! Where I am registration is free, so if your attempts at home aren't going well you could just rejoin. Good luck to you!
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Old 04-28-2011, 06:59 PM   #3
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Oh I don't go to meetings and weigh ins. I do it all online from home.
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Old 04-29-2011, 10:56 AM   #4
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Why quit when it works and you love it?
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Old 04-29-2011, 12:01 PM   #5
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I wasn't for sure quiting. I just wanted to compare the two to see if they are similar because I thought I could save some money if they were.

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Old 04-29-2011, 12:45 PM   #6
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WW has obviously done well for you. You've lost a good deal of weight in a relatively short time. You only have 20ish pounds left to go, according to your ticker. I say stick with it for those 20ish pounds, then try to maintain on your own.
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Old 04-29-2011, 01:57 PM   #7
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I don't think they're very different at all. I've counted calories, I've used exchange plans (which I first encountered and learned in Weight Watchers) and I've been in Weight Watcher's in almost every plan they've had since I first joined in 1972 as an 8-year old). I think the newest WW plan is the only one I haven't used.

Currently I'm following a low-carb exchange plan that I modified slightly from the "high-protein" plans I found on the hillbillyhousewife website. I do occasionally use the "middle of the road" plans (for example tonight we're meeting friends for dinner to celebrate their anniversary, and I'm using the 1800 calorie "middle of the road" plan. I'll have to be careful, because even a few extra carbs can increase my appetitie, but I want to have a little more flexibility).

For me, the most valuable part of WW was never the food plan - calorie counting, exchanges, points - they all worked about equally well. Low-carb works a little better for me, but still I think the food plan is the smallest part of the weight loss equation for me. There's at least a dozen plans that I succeed on (and sometimes I change them, just to have something new to do).

For me, the valuable part was the weekly weigh-in and the meeting. Talking to people "in the same boat," learning new tips and recipes, and just the positive peer pressure (wanting to succeed not only for myself, but to get social reinforcement for the effort). That's what I was really paying for. I could learn a new food plan within a few weeks, and most would be effective (with various trade-offs High-carb eating while calorie counting would result in weight loss, but it's a bit slower and I'm a whole lot more hungry 24/7. Low-carb exchanges control hunger better.

If I could have done it on my own, I would have. Until my thirty's, I almost always did WW with my mother. She was always of the "we can do it at home" mindset, and I'd let her talk me into quitting. We'd do fine for a couple months, and I'd start slacking off.

For me, the group support really is the key to my continued success. I probably will need to attend meetings for the rest of my life, if I want to maintain weight loss.

I initially chose TOPS (taking off pounds sensibly, a non-profit weight loss group) at a time in my life when I couldn't afford WW. I was surprised to find that the group has been more successful for me than WW, I believe because of the fact that the group supports any healthy diet you wish to follow, and because of the low-cost. When I was a WW member, I was always tempted to quit when money got tight. With TOPS I don't have that excuse, because I pay less all year than I did in one month of WW, and there are ways for me to win back some of my money through weight loss contests and such.

I've met a lot of people who've said that the reason they've succeeded with their weight loss method (whether it be WW, Nutrisystem, or WLS) BECAUSE of the expense. Shelling out so much cash, kept them motivated because they didn't want to have wasted the money.

What I'm trying to say in my typically-long-winded way, is that only you can know what motivates you best. If you don't know, you've got to find out. Is it the food plan? Is it the access to support (online or in-person)? Is it the money that you've spent or are spending?

Experience through trial and error is the only way to answer the questions.
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Old 04-29-2011, 08:09 PM   #8
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If I stick with weight watchers for this last 20 pounds then I get to use it for free. As long as you stay within 5 pounds of your goal you become a lifetimer and get it for free.


I think I will stick with it. It has been a great program and I really dont' want to rock the boat now.

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WW has obviously done well for you. You've lost a good deal of weight in a relatively short time. You only have 20ish pounds left to go, according to your ticker. I say stick with it for those 20ish pounds, then try to maintain on your own.
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Old 04-30-2011, 02:17 AM   #9
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As long as you stay within 5 pounds of your goal you become a lifetimer and get it for free.
I thought it was 2 or was that just during maintenance?
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Old 04-30-2011, 02:24 AM   #10
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If I stick with weight watchers for this last 20 pounds then I get to use it for free. As long as you stay within 5 pounds of your goal you become a lifetimer and get it for free.


I think I will stick with it. It has been a great program and I really dont' want to rock the boat now.
Even online only WW? I though that lifetime membership was only for those who attended meetings. If online can do it to, I have a new goal!
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Old 05-10-2011, 12:16 PM   #11
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Hmmm, I heard 5. But 2 is even better.

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I thought it was 2 or was that just during maintenance?
I could of sworn I was told online too. I will have to look into it.

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Even online only WW? I though that lifetime membership was only for those who attended meetings. If online can do it to, I have a new goal!
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Old 05-10-2011, 12:21 PM   #12
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Just searched and it is only for meetings members. How unfair.
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Old 05-10-2011, 03:57 PM   #13
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Just searched and it is only for meetings members. How unfair.
It's for meeting members who weigh in once a month to show that they are in fact maintaining their weight lost.

I know it seems unfair, but it's to prevent someone from signing up online using the tools for a month saying they lost all the weight and then using the tools for free from that point on by claiming they're maintaining at their goal weight.

As there's no way for WW to prove that person actually weighs what they say they do unless they show up at a center.

---

As for your original Q: It's all a matter of what you prefer. Can you honestly follow the program or calorie count on your own? That's all that matters. If you can count calories (and it's not terribly different by the way, it's all just tracking your intake of food) on your own and have the support and tools you need, then the only harm is not trying it right? (And I say this as an avid WW member. It's practically my religion.) Maybe you try it for a month solid. If it's going well, great! Keep at it. If you see things are starting to slip, then it's time to head back. Best of wishes! =)
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Old 05-10-2011, 04:44 PM   #14
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Thank you for clearing that up. I guess I thought that you had to go weigh in at a center every x amount of days but still were eligible using it online. I don't know why I thought that. lol

And thanks for the advice.

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It's for meeting members who weigh in once a month to show that they are in fact maintaining their weight lost.

I know it seems unfair, but it's to prevent someone from signing up online using the tools for a month saying they lost all the weight and then using the tools for free from that point on by claiming they're maintaining at their goal weight.

As there's no way for WW to prove that person actually weighs what they say they do unless they show up at a center.

---

As for your original Q: It's all a matter of what you prefer. Can you honestly follow the program or calorie count on your own? That's all that matters. If you can count calories (and it's not terribly different by the way, it's all just tracking your intake of food) on your own and have the support and tools you need, then the only harm is not trying it right? (And I say this as an avid WW member. It's practically my religion.) Maybe you try it for a month solid. If it's going well, great! Keep at it. If you see things are starting to slip, then it's time to head back. Best of wishes! =)
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Old 05-10-2011, 08:48 PM   #15
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Quote:
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Thank you for clearing that up. I guess I thought that you had to go weigh in at a center every x amount of days but still were eligible using it online. I don't know why I thought that. lol

And thanks for the advice.
If it's any consolation, if you do make lifetime as a meeting member and you want to use e-tools, you have to pay for that (e-tools). Only the meetings are free if you are no more than 2 pounds over goal.
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