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Old 04-16-2001, 07:49 PM   #1  
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Hi there... I'm a 27 y/o F living in Toronto, Canada, and I'm interested in joining WW - but before I plunk down what looks like will be a whole lot of money, I want to know what I'd be getting into.

Currently I'm a member of TOPS (Take Off Pounds Sensibly), but after about 2 years of going to the meetings each week but not really losing (or losing about 10 lbs only to regain it right back) I think it's time to try something new - something to get me motivated again.

I've checked out the WW Canadian web site, but it doesn't seem to have answers to the types of questions that I've got.

First off, I know there is a fee to join and then a weekly fee on top of that - but what does this include? Once you've paid your fees, are all your materials included or do you have to pay even more money to get the basic materials you need to follow the program?

#2 - What are the programs generally like? I suppose there are bound to be differences between the US and Canada, and even between different cities... but is there a standard format?

#3 - What is the role of the leader? Are they there just to lead the group as a whole and preside over the meetings, or do you get one-on-one attention if you need/want it?

#4 - If you want to check out a meeting to get a feel for it before you join, do you have to pay a fee to sit in and observe?

Anyway, thanks for any info you can give.

Christine
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Old 04-16-2001, 11:02 PM   #2  
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Christine, JOIN! Weight Watchers is great, it's been the only way for me to lose and not feel deprived.

To answer, yes there is a fee to join and then a weekly fee. Here in the States we often can buy 10 weeks at a reduced weight, or buy a 4 month block for even less. Rates vary according to the current specials, and you can often also find coupons for meetings.

The weekly fee allows you to attend, weigh in, and receive your program materials. Extra materials are available at a moderate cost, such as books containing point values for restaurant foods, or recipe books.

Our meetings are comprised of a 30 minute weigh in period followed by a 30 minute class lead by the leader. The leader's job is motivation and teaching whatever lesson plan WW is doing for that weight, usually including elaboration on the life skills that WW teaches to help lose and maintain the weight loss. "Rewards" for losing specified amounts of weight are given each week to members. I personally find the meetings very encouraging and motivating.

Alternative meetings are available in some locations, such as 15 minute weigh in/15 minute class, or WW at work. In some areas you can join WW at home, if no meetings are available.

I would go to a meeting and ask if you can attend for free. I think you can, but you can't weigh or get material without joining.

The current format "Winning Points" is an excellent, well organized program that lets you tailor your food to your personal preferences. Weight Watchers also does a lot to help you mentally/emotionally get into shape so the weight will stay off.

Hope this helps!

Annie
290/210/150
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Old 04-17-2001, 07:40 AM   #3  
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Annie---that was very well put!

Christine--I agree with everything Annie said. And I believe the cost for joining is $35.00 and you get your basic information when you join. Which is, a points calculator and some reading material. Each week after that it is $15.00. And you can purchase additional books or things like measuring spoons, water bottle, scales, etc.
Hope this helps. WW is a great program and a doable one too. Not only does it help you lose weight, but it helps you make a lifestyle change with regards to your eating habits.

Come join our Canadian thread on the Buddy Board/

Kelly
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Old 04-17-2001, 09:16 AM   #4  
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Default Joining WW

Last March I joined and by the end of September lost 85#. The program is fantastic. I ended up quitting unfortunately, due to the absolutely awful leader I had. Due to my work hours, there really weren't any other days/locations I could go to. I called the central WW phone #, filed a complaint and never had anyone call me back. I finally gave up and just quit. WW is a fantastic program, well worth the money, let me tell you-but before you join, look for the leader that would motivate, encourage and teach you.
debbie
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Old 04-17-2001, 11:01 AM   #5  
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Default Hi Christine

I just joined 2 weeks ago on a reduced rate. I go to the Barrie Weight Watchers and I know there they have %50 off the for the whole month of April. Maybe it would be the same in TO? I am not sure. I pay $13 a week which includes weigh in and as many meetings during the week as I want to go to. At our centre they have about 2-3 meetings PER DAY. I usually just go to one. They do give you materials when you join, and each week they give you something new (recipes, tips, etc.) Each week has it's own pamphlet. I am going to buy the food companion which is $6 and I am going to buy the fast food companion which is also $6.

When you join they provide a points finder, so as long as you have the nutritional information you will always be able to find out the points.

Good luck, and let us know what you decide!

Angie
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Old 04-17-2001, 12:28 PM   #6  
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Join, it's a wonderful program. I go to a class that has a leader that I don't particularly like - she is quite full of herself but I sift through and enjoy my time there anyway, the members are annimated and fun.
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Old 04-17-2001, 03:01 PM   #7  
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Christine

I would definitely give WW a try. The costs are a little differeent in each area so you should contact an office in Toronto to find out the prices. Everyone seems to have spring specials on right now.

It is a great program and will work well for anyone who is determined to lose weight. It is easy to follow and is set up to change your lifestlye. I have been on WW for 1 year and have lost 75 pounds and have changed my life around.

Having a good leader is important but if the first meeting that you try doesn't work because of the leader try a different one till you find someone you like.

Good Luck
Kathy
(240/165/155)
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Old 04-17-2001, 08:15 PM   #8  
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Default Thanks for the advice...

Thanks everyone for your input on the WW program. I took things one step further today and called a local number to get some more info. Right now they have 'telephone offers', where if you register over the phone you can get reduced rates on I think, 5, 10 and 12 week blocks. The 12 weeks is only about $175, which I guess isn't too bad.

It also turns out that I can sit in on a meeting to see how I like it without being under any obligation to join, which I think is essential. For me, if I don't like the leader or the way the group is conducted, I probably wouldn't go. I'm lucky in that there's a location not too far from where I live that seems to have meetings most days/nights of the week, as well as having one only a few minutes from where I work. So just in case I can't make a meeting on Saturday morning (or don't like the leader there), I can always go the following week on my lunch hour to the other location.

Another question... this time about the types of meetings. I've seen on the website a brief description about 'traditional' meetings, but the group near where I work has 'express' meetings. Does anyone know what that means? Is it just a weigh in with no real meeting afterwards?

Anyway, thanks again for all your help!

Christine
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Old 04-17-2001, 09:53 PM   #9  
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Default Joining WW

C-
$175 for 12 meetings? That's $14.58.3 per meeting, that seems like alot to me-last year here in Seattle they were $12 a week. That's great to hear you can sit in and see if you like the leader, wish I would of known that last year. Traditional meetings are when you talk, etc, the express is weigh and run-same price. Give it a try-what do you have to lose?
debbie
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Old 04-18-2001, 05:57 AM   #10  
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I know in every area it is different, but in Illinois (or at least my part of it) the traditional meeting lasts 45 minutes. I do the express meeting, which means weigh and a 30 minute meeting.

Elaine
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Old 04-18-2001, 08:17 AM   #11  
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Maybe that $175 is including registration fee? Usually you have to pay $40 to join and then a weekly rate on top of that.


Angie
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Old 04-18-2001, 06:58 PM   #12  
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One other thought on picking a meeting -

Lots of folks mentioned the leader as being really important - I TOTALLY agree! But one other thing to pay attention to is the other people who are attending. I attend a Saturday morning meeting at 8:30, and my leader also does a 9:30 and 10:30 that same day. Well, she kept saying that the 8:30 group was better than her other groups, and I couldn't see how it made such a difference, but I attened the 9:30 one day (not my usual meeting), and it was much more FLAT than the earlier meeting. It was alot harder to get anything out of it because the people weren't really talkative and into it. So it's not only the leader, but also the people who make a difference.

Just something to think about if you have choices.

-Kim
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Old 04-18-2001, 07:38 PM   #13  
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Default Thanks again...

Debbie/Angie - Yes, I believe the prices quoted included the actual registration fee as well as the weekly dues. I'm still not quite sure how these prices are figured out. In the region of Ontario where I live, it seems the weekly rates are about $15, while in other regions it is different -- sometimes by about $2/week. I don't understand how one place can be that much cheaper than another.

Kim - Yes, you're absolutely right, the members themselves make a *huge* difference in if someone will like a meeting or not. Sometimes the group 'clicks', sometimes it doesn't. At the location nearest my home, there are 3 meetings between 7:30 and 11am on the day I want to go, so if I don't like one particular meeting, it's nothing to pop into another one to see if it's any better.

Christine
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Old 04-19-2001, 02:04 PM   #14  
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Default Took the plunge...

Good day, all!! After all my days of looking for info and answers to my questions, I finally took the plunge today and called up and registered for the 12 week prepaid plan. I don't even know now if I'll need to test out the group beforehand - that would mean having to wait another week before signing up, and I don't want to do that.

This way, they send my registration stuff in the mail and (fingers crossed) it gets to me tomorrow so I can go to my first meeting on Saturday. Once I get there and I don't like that particular group, then I'll just move to another one until I find the one that's the perfect fit.

FYI - for any of you who are in the same boat as me, trying to get info ahead of time, by paying by phone, you can't go to a meeting until you actually receive the package they send out. That means, if I don't get my package tomorrow, I can't go to the meeting on Saturday. I'll either (still) have to wait until the following week, or I can go another day next week once I have gotten it. But, if I go next Monday or Tuesday, for example, I can't go again next Saturday even though that's my preferred day, because that would give me 2 weigh ins in the same week. I'd have to wait for almost 2 weeks until the following Saturday came around.

So... it's a bit iffy if I'm actually going to be going to my first meeting on Saturday, or if I'll be sitting in to observe and then starting the following week. But you know what, either way, I'm excited. There's just something about starting a brand new program that gets you motivated!!

Thanks for all your help - I'll let you know what my first WW experience is like!

Christine
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Old 04-20-2001, 01:38 AM   #15  
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Congrat's on joining. I've been a member since Jan 20 and have lost 54.8 lbs, it was the absolute BEST thing I ever did. Everyone is right about the leader, Karen is our leader and she is wonderful, she motivates us and she really cares about each and every one of us. Good luck, The e-tools on the WW website are ( I think) pricey considering you can get recipes from this site as well as many fast food places for no charge, I tried it for 1 month but not really a value. Have a great day!
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