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Old 02-25-2005, 05:21 PM   #1  
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Default general questions about lawl program

I'm hoping some of you could answer a few questions for me. I'm trying to learn more about the LAWL program, as part of our ongoing research on diet plans. I've gathered some information, but I'm trying to find out if it is general policy or if certain things change based on the center you go to. Also, we had very few people respond to our survey that are currently on the plan, but a large number that had tried LAWL in the past but left the program. So most of the information we have is negative, based on former LAWL members experiences. We'd like to confirm things with current members, assuming you are still currently on the plan because you have positive experiences. We'd appreciate your input, though you can do it here or privately by PM, thanks

1. Several people have told me they were discouraged from exercising because any muscle gain would affect their 2 pound weekly loss. These people have said their counselors specifically told them not to exercise. Others said they were encouraged to exercise when they were not meeting goals. How does this compare to your experience?


2. Some people said they eat Luna bars instead of LA Lites to save money. Do you use alternative bars? How much do you pay for the LA Lites?


3. About the fees - Do I understand this correctly? You pay up front for the total amount of weight you need to lose, and at 2 lbs per week, is approx $9 per weekly fee. PLUS you pay for a maintenance period in advance. Is this a 52 week period and is it still $9 per week? Is the maintenance period optional?


4. What can you tell me about the rebate program? I am under the impression that if you continue through the prgram, lose weight and keep it off for the one year maintenance period, that you get back 50% of the fees. Also, this deal is only valid if you buy the LA Lites regularly, eating them twice a day which significantly increases your total costs of the program by as much as $28 per week. Is this correct, or do I have the details wrong? Are you also required to purchase the LA Lites during the maintenance period?


5. Most of the people that we surveyed said they thought the plan was no better or different than a program such as Weight Watchers. After comparing the eating plans, I agree that there is nothing special about it, it's just a low calorie diet. Research shows that all diets work if you stick to them, the only trick is finding one that you WILL stick to. Many of our survey respondents felt they stuck to LAWL longer because they had paid for it in advance. Do you feel this is your main incentive to continue? Or do you attribute it to the 3x weekly push from the counselors?

6. Most of the complaints we received were about the counselors. If you are not happy with your counselor, are you able to choose another one, or is this frowned upon?

7. What happens if you do not reach your weekly or long term goals?

8. No plan is perfect. What issue(s) do you have with LAWL and how do you resolve them to make the program work for you?


Thank you!!!
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Old 02-25-2005, 09:54 PM   #2  
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Suzanne, I think I answered your other survey about the LAWL program, but I thought I'd also share my thoughts on the specific questions you asked in the LAWL subforum:

1. Several people have told me they were discouraged from exercising because any muscle gain would affect their 2 pound weekly loss. These people have said their counselors specifically told them not to exercise. Others said they were encouraged to exercise when they were not meeting goals. How does this compare to your experience?

When I joined, I was told that exercise is not required in order to be successful on the plan, and I have to agree that in terms of losing pounds that's true. I wasn't a big exerciser when I started LAWL (still am not - yet) so it hasn't been an issue for me. However, I do plan to start exercising more, thanks to the inspiration of my fellow posters, and if I see it affecting my loss (and my center comments on it) I'll address it then. My center is very good about taking measurements every four weeks or so in addition to monitoring pounds lost, which I appreciate.


2. Some people said they eat Luna bars instead of LA Lites to save money. Do you use alternative bars? How much do you pay for the LA Lites?

I use the Lites, not the Lunas. I didn't know about the Lunas as a substitute when I started, and by the time it came up I had pretty much accepted the cost as a part of the program. I buy my Lites in 20-box increments and pay $10.50 per 7-count box ($1.50 per bar); regular price is $14 per box ($2/bar).


3. About the fees - Do I understand this correctly? You pay up front for the total amount of weight you need to lose, and at 2 lbs per week, is approx $9 per weekly fee. PLUS you pay for a maintenance period in advance. Is this a 52 week period and is it still $9 per week? Is the maintenance period optional?

Yes, you have it right. I paid $6/week (originally signed up at $9/week then saw an ad for 1/3 off in the next day's paper, which they honored) for 43 weeks of weight loss, 6 weeks of "stabilization" and 52 weeks of maintenance. Actually I paid 1/3 up front and the balance over two months. I also received a 10% discount for signing up the day of my consultation.

Maintenance is included in the contract at the same price as the weight loss weeks, although I suppose if you argue hard enough, anything is negotiable. Their "pitch" is that, based on the evidence that people who maintain a loss for a year are most likely to maintain long-term, they have you continue weighing in on a weekly basis for a year after you reach your goal.



4. What can you tell me about the rebate program? I am under the impression that if you continue through the prgram, lose weight and keep it off for the one year maintenance period, that you get back 50% of the fees. Also, this deal is only valid if you buy the LA Lites regularly, eating them twice a day which significantly increases your total costs of the program by as much as $28 per week. Is this correct, or do I have the details wrong? Are you also required to purchase the LA Lites during the maintenance period?

The maintenance rebate is separate from your weight loss contract, with slightly different requirements. Here is the exact wording of the Rebate portion of my LAWL program agreement (it's not actually IN the contract, but a separate form that you sign):

1. One Lite Bar or Drink daily during maintenance. (yes this is in BOLD in the contract.)
2. XXX goal weight must be attained during the weight loss phase of the program. (I wonder, if you have to buy more weeks to reach your goal weight, if that is still considered "successful completion" of the weight loss phase?)
3. Complete the six-week stabilization phase of the program.
4. Visit the center once a week for weigh-in and counseling during the maintenance phase
5. Be within 5 pounds of your goal weight at the conclusion of Phase 1 [six month mark].
6. Be within 5 pounds of your goal weight at the conclusion of Phase 2 [12 month mark].


25% of your program costs are refunded each at the end of Phase 1 and Phase 2 if you are within 5 pounds of goal.

The Lites are required only to qualify for the rebate and the weight-loss guarantee (if you don't reach your goal week in X weeks, you get free weeks until you reach goal).



5. Most of the people that we surveyed said they thought the plan was no better or different than a program such as Weight Watchers. After comparing the eating plans, I agree that there is nothing special about it, it's just a low calorie diet. Research shows that all diets work if you stick to them, the only trick is finding one that you WILL stick to. Many of our survey respondents felt they stuck to LAWL longer because they had paid for it in advance. Do you feel this is your main incentive to continue? Or do you attribute it to the 3x weekly push from the counselors?

I agree that a diet program is a diet program and the important part is not the plan itself but finding one that works for you. The "exchange" concept really works for me, and gets me eating stuff like fruits and veggies that I used to leave out. Slowly but surely, out of repetition more than anything else probably, I'm getting used to making healthier choices!

And yes, investing in the program up front has made a HUGE difference in my determination to stick with it. I've never signed up for any other "center-based" program like LAWL or WW or JC, but I tried ediets once and have the South Beach book, and have tried plain old eating better, only to slide back into my old eating habits within a couple of weeks. If I were on a pay-by-the-week plan, I'd probably just kind of drop out of that, too, without the incentive of getting my money's worth to keep me going back
.


6. Most of the complaints we received were about the counselors. If you are not happy with your counselor, are you able to choose another one, or is this frowned upon?

The way my center (and most are, I think) is organized, you aren't "assigned" to a counselor - you meet with whoever is available when you sign in. So some days you may get a counselor that you really "click" with, and other days you get the one who always seems to be looking down her nose at you.

I changed centers completely at the beginning of January because I didn't like the counselors anymore. I felt they were very critical and often felt like they were looking down on me when I did go in after a lapse. Not all the counselors were like that, but the few that were always seemed to be working at my regular weigh-in time. (I don't think my old center liked me switching, because they were really lazy about sending my chart over to the new center - what, did they think if they stalled long enough I would just go back? Ha!)

Each and every one of the counselors at my new is center as great. VERY supportive and understanding of those "life happens" moments. They cheer your successes and don't stomp on you when you backslide - I almost like going in there on the "bad" days because usually they do such a good job of turning my mood around and making me want to get back on track, even though I don't like admitting to my "failure" when I know the scale is going to be up.

Oh, and one other thing I want to add about my center is that they have NEVER pressured me to purchase any of their supplements. The closest they come is asking "You don't take any supplements, right?" at every weigh in - giving me the opportunity to buy if I want but not shoving them down my throad. I know some people have had to deal with really pushy sales tactics, but it's not that way at every center.



7. What happens if you do not reach your weekly or long term goals?

If you have been adhering to the terms of your contract - which are never missing a weigh in, never deviating from the meal plan and eating your 2 Lites per day - if you haven't reached your goal weight within the time frame in your contract, they will continue your program until you reach your goal weight at no additional cost. If you've deviated in any way, you'll have to pay for additional weeks to reach your goal. I think you have the option of starting stabilization/maintenance as soon as you reach the end of your weight loss weeks even if you aren't at goal.

8. No plan is perfect. What issue(s) do you have with LAWL and how do you resolve them to make the program work for you?

This isn't exactly in response to your question, but one thing I would really like to see them change is offering a reduced rate for the maintenance weeks. Charging the same price for once-per-week counseling instead of three times per week seems a little greedy, no?

Also, the current plan has these complicated "limited/unlimited" categories of food options that can be very hard to keep track of if you are a busy person and, like me, tend to eat on the run several meals a week. (I know there is a "new" plan out there that eliminates the "limited/unlimited" but I haven't heard anything about it at my center.) Anyway, I don't concern myself too much with tracking my limiteds - especially the starches. A girl can only eat diet bread so many times a week!

Edited to add: And I think the plans skimp on the dairy. Calcium is so important, especially for women, and supplements just really aren't the same as getting it from real food.



Hope that helps you, Suzanne!

Fiona

Last edited by mkfionap; 02-25-2005 at 10:02 PM.
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Old 02-26-2005, 10:23 AM   #3  
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Suzanne,
Here is what happened when I signed up at LAWL.
1) The counselors do not encourage any kind of exercise at all.
2) At first I bought the bars from LA and paid over 200.00 for those, then I started buying the lites off of Ebay for alot less. I have since switched to the Luna bars.
3) When I signed up I had 41 pounds to lose. I paid 8.00 for each week. It was 21 weeks of weight loss, 6 weeks stabilization and 25 weeks of maintenance. They did not give me any kind of deals or any percentage off. Alot of people get 4 week trial perios, a free box of lites, food scales and cookbooks. Our center didn't offer a thing. Very fast and high pressure sales tactics from the manager.
4) I can't remember what the rebate program was.
5) I like the LA plans because they give you all the food groups but like always, I wish there were bigger food portions. I just like to eat...
6) Most of our counselors are "blah" I got tired of them all saying different things everytime I went in, so when I go in now, I ask for a specific one. I call ahead to make sure she is working. If she isn't there I don't go.
7) I'm still far from my weightloss goal. I just buy more weeks. They did offer me the chance at Christmas to renew my contract for a year for 99.00. I did take them up on that.
8) LA has recently started a new plan that should be included in the price that you pay like the old one is. Well I went to pick up the new plan when they got them in and was told it would cost me 29.95. When I asked why, I was told because the manager said so. They said I could either stick with the old plan or pay to upgrade to the new plan. As far as the plans go, I alternate now between plans depending on how hungry I am.
I hope this helps as well. Just ask if you need us to be more specific on something.
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Old 02-28-2005, 09:46 AM   #4  
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1. Several people have told me they were discouraged from exercising because any muscle gain would affect their 2 pound weekly loss. These people have said their counselors specifically told them not to exercise. Others said they were encouraged to exercise when they were not meeting goals. How does this compare to your experience?

My center has been very encouraging about exercise. I used to come in with my exercise clothes on and when things got busy and I adjusted my exercise schedule, they asked about it and encouraged me to continue. Their main concern is that I was getting enough calories to support the exercise. During january I didn't lose much and they determined I was doing too much exercise for my food plan, they never encouraged me to stop exercising, just adjusted my food plan to included more calories.

2. Some people said they eat Luna bars instead of LA Lites to save money. Do you use alternative bars? How much do you pay for the LA Lites?

I use the LA Lites. I purchased them in bulk, upfront for my weeks of weight loss and 6 weeks of stablization. I paid around $800 for 80 boxes or about $1.40 each. I've tried many of the Luna bars and can get them for about $1 each or so, but really prefer the LA Lites.



3. About the fees - Do I understand this correctly? You pay up front for the total amount of weight you need to lose, and at 2 lbs per week, is approx $9 per weekly fee. PLUS you pay for a maintenance period in advance. Is this a 52 week period and is it still $9 per week? Is the maintenance period optional?

Yes, that's correct. you pay for the maintenance period up front too. My weight loss weeks were 37 (74lbs), 6 weeks of stablization, and 52 weeks for maintenance for 95 weeks total at $5/week ($475 total).

4. What can you tell me about the rebate program? I am under the impression that if you continue through the prgram, lose weight and keep it off for the one year maintenance period, that you get back 50% of the fees. Also, this deal is only valid if you buy the LA Lites regularly, eating them twice a day which significantly increases your total costs of the program by as much as $28 per week. Is this correct, or do I have the details wrong? Are you also required to purchase the LA Lites during the maintenance period?

The rebate is only valid if you get the lites. You get 25% back at the 6 month mark and another 25% back at the 1 year mark. But that's only for the weekly fees, so I would be eligible for $118 back at each 6 month period. yes, the lites are required during maintenance (one a day) so i ahve nother 52 boxes to purchase at some point. Howeer, I like them and use them as intended. They aren't any more expensive than normal nutrition bars that I've used in the past, such as Zone or Detour bars.

5. Most of the people that we surveyed said they thought the plan was no better or different than a program such as Weight Watchers. After comparing the eating plans, I agree that there is nothing special about it, it's just a low calorie diet. Research shows that all diets work if you stick to them, the only trick is finding one that you WILL stick to. Many of our survey respondents felt they stuck to LAWL longer because they had paid for it in advance. Do you feel this is your main incentive to continue? Or do you attribute it to the 3x weekly push from the counselors?

i think LA is totally different from weight watchers. I had some success with WW, but never felt like I learned how to eat properly. I could use my points any way I chose and that meant if I decided to splurge at lunch at McDonald's I would have to starve the rest of the day because I had used my points, this basically set me up to fail. The absolute biggest benefit I've gotten from LA is learning to eat a more balanced meal, spread my meals and snacks throughout the day and plan what I intend to eat. Also the program really discourages using a lot of processed or canned foods forcing me to eat fresh fruits, veggies and meats. I feel so much healthier than I have in years, I feel great about the food choices I'm making and feel it's a plan I can live on for the rest of my life. Part of my incentive is that I paid all of that money, part of it because I check myself 3 times a week (this gives me incentive to continue to do well when the scale is down or to be better when the scale is up...though it's not the same for everyone) and I've also have co-worker that has had amazing success and part of me says, "She did it, I can't fail"

6. Most of the complaints we received were about the counselors. If you are not happy with your counselor, are you able to choose another one, or is this frowned upon?

There are counselors that I don't like as well as others and think that if I really didn't gel with one of them I could arrange to have a different one, or just wait to speak with someone in particular.

7. What happens if you do not reach your weekly or long term goals?

I'm not real sure. The weekly goals I don't think are all that important; however, I was averaging 2lbs a week until Jan/Feb. When i was stuck during those weeks, there was emphasis on looking over my diary and talking about what was going on...was I udner additional stress, was I exercising less...they also thought my food were becoming too static. They asked me to mix it up a bit, try some new foods. When that didn't really work they decided I needed a higher calorie food plan because of the exercise.

8. No plan is perfect. What issue(s) do you have with LAWL and how do you resolve them to make the program work for you?

I try to stick to plan as much as possible; however, I make some minor adjustments such as using fitday to track calories on those days when I don't want to limit myself to only one serving of dairy. This to me is a downside of LAWL. Most of the plan particpants are women and we need to concerned about getting enough calcium and I think the plan restricts it too much, so sometimes I have an extra glass of milk or yogurt, put some reduced fat cheese on potato.

That's my take on the plan. Overall, I'm very pleased with it. I've lost nearly 50lbs, have another 25-30 to go and fully intend to get to goal weight and maintain it. I've begun exercising consistently since being on plan and up to about 4.5 miles a day/5 days a week. I have a physical tomorrow with my doctor and can't wait to see what she has to say about the weight loss and am looking forward to checking my cholestrol levels to see what kind of progress i've made.

Hope this helps and if you have any other questions...ask away

Jen

I went to read the posts after I posted mine and wanted to comment about supplements. My center has asked about them once in a while, but I made it pretty clear up front that I if I can't lose weight eating real food in a manageable way then I guess I'm supposed to be this size. They have encouraged me to do the take off diet to jump start myself again, but I usually just buy the knudsen's juice in the grocery store and they never ask about it.

Last edited by auditgirl; 02-28-2005 at 09:53 AM.
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Old 03-06-2005, 04:58 PM   #5  
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Thank you so much for your very helpful replies, we appreciate it
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Old 04-01-2005, 02:06 PM   #6  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RustyWallaceFan
8) LA has recently started a new plan that should be included in the price that you pay like the old one is. Well I went to pick up the new plan when they got them in and was told it would cost me 29.95. When I asked why, I was told because the manager said so. They said I could either stick with the old plan or pay to upgrade to the new plan. As far as the plans go, I alternate now between plans depending on how hungry I am.
I hope this helps as well. Just ask if you need us to be more specific on something.
That is amazing to me! When I went in to my center they were just passing out the new plan to everyone. I can't beleive they charged you. I think everything varies from center to center. Here are a few answers to you questions.

1. I was told not to exercise.

2. I bought the lite in bulk. I payed $2 per bar. They encouraged me to have a family member cosign for me to get credit through them. So I bought all the lites and supplements in bulk. My balance right now. approx $3000. The interest is sky high on this card. Now I'm substituting string cheese and Pria bars for the la lites and I'm not taking supplements. I am losing at the same rate that I was before.

3. I paid for 50 weeks up front and the 1 year maintenance program. I think that it is required. Also one more thing about the cost of the program. If you just pay for the weeks and maintenance it isn't that bad, but where they really stick it to you is the products that they push on you.

4. audit girl answered that question perfectly.

5. I LOVE the la weight loss plan. I tried ww and lost at a super slow pace. I have had great success on this plan. I don't love LAWL as a company though. I know that sounds strange. I just think they need to hire better counselors and not have such a sales push.

6.You can request a certain counselor if you need to. That really was one of my big problems. I could tell that some of the couselors just wanted to get me in and out. Some of them were just annoying. I wish they were more knowledgeable and didn't try to push products all day long.

7. Nothing. They just try to encourage you or check you diary to see what you can do differently. There have been several weeks that I didn't make my goal. They usually try to focus on your average. 2 pounds a week is the goal.

8. I have lost 75 pounds doing LAWL. I love the actual plan itself. I, like auditgirl usually eat more dairy and I substitue the la lites with string cheese or a different protein bar. I also will have more than my recommended 3 servings a day of veggies. I figure that can't hurt me.

Hope that helps. Just realized this was posted the end of February. Oh well.

Mandy
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Old 04-06-2005, 04:15 PM   #7  
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Help!!! I'm confused and frustrated

I'm new to LAWL (1st week) and have already been told 2 different things by 2 different "counselors". I was told If I'm not doing LA lites to substitue 2 proteins and than I was told that the purple plan already accounts for not taking the LA lites and to follow the plan as is w/out any additional foods. Although, the plan itself says 2 LA Lites per day and dosen't say anything about if you don't have the LA Lites. If anyone knows, please let me know. I'm trying to follow the diet , but having trouble know exactly what to do with the incosistant messages I'm getting about the eating plan.

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Old 04-06-2005, 05:03 PM   #8  
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Hi danbasi! (we're more active in the monthly thread, so come on and join us over there)

A couple of questions - did they start you on gold? (if you've got probably 30 or 40 pounds to lose) If they started you on gold, then the purple plan probably includes the extra protein that they were talking about. The protein sizes in the purple plan are slightly bigger than in the gold).

Otherwise, ask to speak to the manager of the center - and get it cleared up. I think that both of the counselors were probably 'trying' to say the same thing, but not making it clear to you.

Post your question in the monthly thread -maybe somebody can give you more details there!

Julie
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Old 04-06-2005, 09:01 PM   #9  
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Thansk for the response to my question. I will try to post in the general discussion group as well
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