Hello Bubba -- I found the predictions for phase-by-phase weight loss to be quite accurate. For Phase 1, though, I lost quite a bit more than the 8-13 pounds (I must have had lots of water, since up till last Jan., I ate primarily carbs and crap).
For the majority of time I was in Phase 2, I lost between 1-3 pounds each week.
Also, I have done the Denise Austin workouts, both on DVD and the Lifetime broadcasts. They are decent. Cardio exercises are so-so, strength are better. I find I have to do them without the sound because she puts a little too much enjoyment into her voice while exercising and, in addition to annoying me, I think my roommates might think I'm watching dirty movies.
Good luck with your diet and exercise!