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My Weigh-In Outfit

October 12, 2013

After about a year off, I went back to Weight Watchers because I had gained about 8 pounds since the summer. Not a huge amount of weight, but enough to make me realize I had better get a grip on it.

I was reluctant to go back, because Weight Watchers makes me a little insane.

It’s not just me – ask anybody who is a WW member if they have nutty weight-related behaviors, and they’ll probably admit they do. Things like:

  • Having a special weigh-in outfit that is made of the lightest substances known to man
  • Only weighing in if you haven’t eaten
  • Not drinking any liquids for a few hours before you go
  • Only weighing in if you have….erm, relieved yourself beforehand
  • Going to the earliest meeting in the day so you don’t have any food in your stomach

Do I need to point out that none of these things help you lose weight? They help you have less weight on the scale at that moment.

I indulged in a little nutso-behavior myself as a way to welcome myself back.

Last week, I weighed in wearing – gasp – hiking shoes! Most people either weigh in shoeless or in some micro-thin flip flops. If they could get away with wearing those cheap foam thongs they give you after a pedicure, they’d probably do that. My hiking shoes were a definite anomaly, being large, crusty clodhoppers.

I did it because I wanted to “lose weight” this week no matter what. I just wanted to give myself the mental lift – even knowing it was based on a lie – of seeing the scale record a loss, merely due to the fact that I was wearing lighter shoes this week.

When I weighed in, I had lost five pounds. Obviously I did better than just shoe weight. (For the record, my shoes weigh 2.3 pounds. I just checked. SEE? CRAZY! Sane people do not weigh their shoes, for the record.)

WW Desk Lady: WOW! Five pounds! That’s great!

Suebob: I wore much heavier shoes last week.

WW Desk Lady: Still! You did great!

Suebob: I was sick all week. I felt terrible and ate mostly soup.

WW Desk Lady: (beaming) Well, you did great!

See what I mean? This is my issue with Weight Watchers – it’s all about the scale. I guess I should expect that, “Weight” being their first name and all.

In a sane world, the lady would have said “Oh, you poor dear! We really don’t want people losing weight because of illness!”

I’m designing a sane weight loss plan in my head. What would that look like?

Instead of walking in to see a scale the first thing, your counselor would ask you:

“How do you feel?” Not “How do you feel about how you ate?” because that’s an emotional minefield. But “How do you feel overall – do you feel physically and mentally healthy?”

They would also want to know:

  • What kind of exercise did you do? Did you enjoy it? Is it something you want to keep doing, or do you need to find something else? Are your friends and family part of your exercise? Can you make them part of it?
  • Did you eat good food, or highly processed crap? Do you think what you ate supported your health?
  • Do you feel strong? Do you feel capable? Do you have things you can’t do now that you would like to – like playing with your grandkids, or hiking up to see a beautiful sunset? How do you plan to get to that point?
  • Are there things in your life that aren’t working that impact how well you eat and how much? Do you want to work on those things?

And then, at the end of the meeting, if you wanted to, you could weigh yourself. With all your clothes on – because that’s how sane people walk around every day.

  1. October 12, 2013 12:46

    I would join your weight loss plan in a heartbeat.

  2. elvie permalink
    October 12, 2013 13:37

    What Juanita said.

    • October 13, 2013 17:13

      Maybe I should start a biz. Suebob’s Weight Loss Hut, Inc.

  3. October 12, 2013 14:37

    I like it. I *try* not to be crazy, and those are the kinds of questions I focus on.

    • October 13, 2013 17:12

      Trying not to be crazy is hard sometimes.

  4. Vicki permalink
    October 12, 2013 14:56

    Years ago, I was friendly with some women who went to Weight Watchers.
    They wouldn’t eat before they went (late morning meeting), took their shoes off, wouldn’t wear their girdles (told you it was years ago lol), took all their jewellery off, wedding and engagement rings included, wore as little as possible – then would go out to the local bakery afterwards for coffee or tea, with sugar, and cream buns!!!!
    Sort of defeated the purpose, ladies.

    • October 13, 2013 17:12

      But on the other hand, they sound like they’re fun to hang out with.

  5. October 12, 2013 15:04

    Weight Watchers as a whole drives me insane. I’ve never been a member (are there any men members?) but know a few and they’ve told me about these behaviors (taking laxatives the night before weigh in for example). I wrote a post about it and thought the WW polices were going to string me up (it’s over at They know it’s bad but much like a family member, they can deride it but no one else better.

  6. Fred Malpica Fitness Systems permalink
    October 13, 2013 10:57

    I edited this comment because it was obvious shilling for a service or product. You can come to my site and comment, but please don’t use it as an advertising opportunity unless we have a longstanding relationship – and even then, I might question your judgment as a friend.

  7. Naomi's mom permalink
    October 19, 2013 21:49

    First of all, joining WW because you gained 8 pounds is stupid. Go to the gym for a month or less. Weight watchers is for ppl like me who have 50 lbs to lose of baby weight. Like you said, weight watchers is about the scale. 8 pounds could be friggin water from eating too much salt last month…

    Also, if weighing in makes you mental why not do weight watchers online??? Its cheaper and you don’t weigh in in front of the whole world.

    I see weight watchers this way: its about portion controlling without having to do the calculating. If it’s more than that to you then you don’t get it and shouldn’t do it. It sounds like you were the one obsessed with weight when you joined if you’re worried about 8 effing pounds!!! Hire a shrink not weight watchers.

    As for the WW desk lady: what the hell does she know? Being sick is an unfortunate way to lose weight, but if you care about what the damn desk lady says honestly you’ve missed the whole point… Not that I understand your reason for ever joining in the first place. Cry me a river 8 pounds!

    • October 20, 2013 09:05

      Haha you really worked yourself into a lather!That should be good for about 1/2 pound. Only 49.5 to go! See, I’m helping!

      I started WW when I had about 80 pounds to lose and I lost 50. Then I gained 8 back. And not salt weight, either – this was consistent weight gain over several months, so I knew I had to get a handle on it. I don’t think I was wrong for going back sooner rather than later.

      The part that works for me IS the weigh-in. I like the meetings because my leader, Terri, is a hoot and the people who show up on Saturdays at 7:30 are really inspiring regulars. But the most important part for me is having to show the up and climb on a scale and be accountable for my behavior that week. I just think how we behave is freaking hilarious. Molly taking off her watch, for example. I’m laughing with her, because I know, and that was the point of this post – we’re all a little mental when it comes to weight loss. Tryna be funny, and a little serious.

      This week I lost .2 lbs. Now THAT’s water weight.

  8. October 21, 2013 09:41

    oh I do so remember my ww outfit so well.

  9. October 24, 2013 03:17

    I have never done WW officially but I have done “biggest loser” type programs that also had weekly weigh-ins. I did this same routine on weigh in days, plus I was eaten up by anxiety about the weigh in for 48 hours. I can imagine 10 weeks of all that would probably lead to some metabolic damage. Thank you for getting real about what we’re doing to ourselves.

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