Originally Posted by tinkerbelll
I have been extremely broke for awhile now, I got laid of & unemployment was paying me next to nothing. In January my boyfriend payed for me to start WW and gave me $ to pay for the 1st 2 months to go to meetings and all the start up kits, everything I needed to get started. Hes also been paying all my bills and basically supporting me.
Well our car needs the entire a.c thingy fixed along with the breaks & its gonna be like $700 on top of some other bills that came unexpected & I really can't afford the $42 a month anymore, at least until I get back on my feet.
I'm going to keep the Etools which I believe is $20 which I can barely afford that, but I need it bc I'm constantly it.
I'm scared that not going to the meetings will have a bad affect on me. They emphasize CONSTANTLY on how important the meetings are so that scares me. I have alot if support from home with my b.f and I'm apart of ALOT of weight loss forums which help me too but I never did WW before and got off to a bumpy start to begin with and now with not going to the meetings Im scared that I wont do good.
Any advice? Tips? Anyone do it at home & have been successful??
If you find that you really do need the meeting/weigh-in, but can't afford WW, I'd highly recommend TOPS (you can find local groups at tops.org - and if there is no group in your area, it only takes four people to create their own chapter. There was an article in one of last years magazines that featured small member groups (often family members who charge no monthly dues so the only cost is the $28 for the yearly membership).
I have only ever succeeded at weight loss in the long-term when I was attending weekly meetings; and whenever I gave up the meetings, I inevitably regained (almost immediately, in most cases). I've just finally realized and come to terms with the fact that to be successful, I will need to attend a weight management support group for the rest of my life - or I will fail...
For me, it's the meeting and weigh-in that's most important, not the food plan (if any) endorsed by the group. The two groups I've done best on (and about equally well) have been Weight Watchers and TOPS (taking off pound sensibly).
I discovered TOPS more than twenty years ago, when I quit my job to go to graduate school full time and could no longer afford Weight Watchers. Even if the costs were the same, I think I would now choose TOPS over WW because I prefer the TOPS atmosphere. However, if TOPS were not available to me, I would have to find a way to afford WW or form my own similar group, because I need the public weigh-in and the accountability to real people I care about.
TOPS is a not-for-profit international weight loss club, with an early history much like Weight Watchers, except that the founder of WW, Jean Nidetch started her club in 1963 and went the business-model for profit route, and Esther Manz started TOPS in 1948 and chose the non-profit sector. The early plans were very similar, relying on the exchange plan developed by the American Diabetes Association, and the American Dietetic Association.
TOPS allows members to choose their own food plan, and many members are former or current WW members (you can actually be a member of both clubs simultaneously, which I am considering, because I think I would benefit from two weigh-in meetings weekly. I still have a tendency to have a "cheat day" or two after my weigh-in. I need to eliminate the off-plan eating and I think the double weigh-in would help (and I now can afford both, though when I started TOPS my husband and I could either afford one of us to go to WW or both of us to go to TOPS, so we chose TOPS. Hubby has dropped out of TOPS, and our budget is not as tight, so I can afford to join WW if I want, and I've been considering it - but I wouldn't give up TOPS because of the incentive programs in place for weight loss. I like that TOPS allows me to be rewarded - and even "paid" for weight loss).
There are some unique disadvantages and advantages to each plan, but the biggest advantage to TOPS is the price. As a not-for-profit, the cost is quite low (I spend on TOPS for a year, than in six weeks of WW). To join, it's $28 per year for the national dues (which includes a 9 issue per year magazine with articles, success stories, recipes...)
The monthly dues vary but are almost always under $5 per month (we have three groups in our area and dues range from $2 to $5 per month), but there are often ways to earn free dues. For example in our chapter, any weight loss in a month, earns you free dues the next month due.
Most chapters have some kind of fine for weight gain (a nickel or dime per pound, or a quarter for any gain - usually very small stakes), and the best loser for the week usually earns some kind of cash prize. I've been in some groups that give all or part of the fine money to the biggest loser, but in my current group everyone contributes a dime each week and the biggest loser takes the dimes home (this way, no one is benefiting from the misfortunes of others. In groups where the fines go to the biggest loser it can be tempting to hope everyone else gains, so if you win, you'll get more money).
The biggest disadvantage to TOPS is also it's biggest advantage (depending on your personality). TOPS is much more personal and less anonymous than WW. Members do share more details about their progress than in WW. In WW, you can be anonymous. If you gain, no one has to know. In most TOPS chapters, everyone shares whether they've lost, gained, or stayed the same, and some chapters share the amount (I've never been in a group that exptected members to share their exact weight. Even in our group, while virtually all of us share how much we've lost or gained, it's entirely acceptable to refuse to share the specifics, if for example you're embarassed about how much you've gained). If you lose or stay the same, everyone applauds, and if you gain, everyone says "we're glad you came."
Another disadvantage is that there are no diet experts or trained dietitians (except by accident if a member happens to have such qualifications), and so you'll hear different and contradictory advice as members share what has worked for them.
Some people don't do well with the competitive aspect, but virtually all of the competitions are entirely optional, and you can opt out.
I've been a member of TOPS groups in Illinois and Wisconsin, and in all of the groups I've been in, there have always been members who were either former or current Weight Watchers members, many of which continued to follow and discuss the WW food plan in the meeting. In my experience in the groups I belonged to, I'd estimate that 1/4 to 1/3 of TOPS members were following WW's current plan, and if you included former WW plans, the numbers often went up to half or more.