I used the 6WBMO in 2005 and lost 35 pounds in that 6 weeks. I went from 185 to 150, an 18 to a 12, and I managed to keep it off. Last year I broke my ankle very badly and in the wheelchair bound depression I gained it all back and then some. So, I know that following the program works.
That said, these are the pros and cons from my own experience, and how I've adopted these changes back into my life:
Pro: The diet is very balanced, and very healthy.Everything is very black and white, if you follow it you will lose weight. Con: For most people they aren't going to follow the exercise regimen, or they won't stay POP (perfectly on plan). So they gain it back. There are a lot of people who go back to it again and again. Yo-yo dieting is very hard on your body. Now: I have a balanced and healthy diet, and I eat several times a day. I allow myself an occasional soda or pastry, but I've learned to pack my meals for the day, so when I allow myself a treat that's really what it is, and all I need it to be. I would have learned the same things in a really good nutrition class.
Pro: A great support website, very active and current. You can always find someone to buddy with. Amazing, genuine people with a lot of inspiration to offer. Con: They take accountability so stringently that a lot of people just stop posting. There are 'boot camps' and challenges if you'd like to participate, and I know a lot of people can go the long haul with that, but I'm not one of those. Even starting my own threads I eventually feel that I can't post honestly because I will be accused of leading someone away from a POP day, or offering advice that isn't 'on plan'. There are many who are fiercely protective of the 6WBMO. If you post a remark that doesn't jibe with them, the responses can be almost cultist. Now: I browse profiles and pictures for inspiration, and read and post where I feel comfortable. I avoid getting too entwined with anyone. I avoid group type challenge threads, and just do my own thing. It's not ideally what I'd like, which is what led me here in the hopes I might find a support community more suited to me.
Pro: A great recipe exchange. I learned to find and prepare whole, natural, healthy foods, and cook without salt, milk, & butter. And I like it! Cons: That was hard. I have precious little free time, don't love cooking, and was raised on salt & butter. So for me, the food was bland for a long time. I almost gave up, and I imagine a lot of people do give up for this reason. Now: I take recipes from anywhere and adapt them to my way of cooking. My husband has lost so much weight and looks so good that people at his work have asked me to go into business cooking for them and packing their meals. Too bad I still don't love cooking. I read labels, I know my ingredients, and buy as close to nature as possible. I spend one day a week cooking in bulk so I have less excuses to reach for unhealthy alternatives.
Pro: I learned which exercises target the parts of your body that I want to change. Con: I didn't actually make time to do them very often. Now: I know that good muscle tone is key to improved motivation and energy levels. I don't do all the exercises recommended by MT, but I did go and find exercises that target the desired areas, THAT I ENJOY DOING. Anyone can find them on the internet. I have a treadmill but I prefer to clip on my shuffle and dance like a crazy person until I could drop. I do yoga. I use exercise time as my me time, and I don't guilt trip myself for having me time. I know now that I can't take care of anyone else if I don't take care of myself.
Pro: It works. Con: It is pretty restrictive and very scheduled. I am not a scheduled kind of person, so of course, eventually I dropped off of the 'path'. Now: I learned a great deal from this plan, and I apply some of that to how I live now. It works for me and I know it will continue to work for me because it is how I live, not a diet.
In my opinion, one has to be ready to make a change in the way he or she lives. And I do believe that anyone, of any weight, with any goal can do it. You have to educate yourself and apply the effort. If you adopt healthy choices and habits into your life and allow them to become your nature, then over time you will see your body evolve and your health improve. Find what you will enjoy doing, and never stop researching for yourself and learning.
Love & Light!