Weight Watchers - Sign Up Day
Hi, my name is Heidi and today I am signing up for Weight Watchers. My starting weight: 211 pounds. My goal weight: 150 pounds (dream on, right?)
Today's Weight Watchers Tips...
* If you're the type who tends to run late, purchase your membership online, and then just show up at your first meeting.
* Use the monthly pass payment option to save money.
* Don't skip the "Getting Started" session. It takes place AFTER the regular meeting.
The journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step. -Lao Tzu
Yesterday I bounced between dread and excitement anticipating what could be the beginning of my new thinner life! Of course, this isn't the first time I've had those feelings, and I'm still leading my old fatter life. But still, now that sign up day has arrived, I can't help feel positive about it.
Yesterday I perused the Weight Watchers website and found that I could purchase my membership online and just show up to a meeting. But because I wanted the full one-on-one experience (okay, coddling), I decided to pay at the location and soak up the love and encouragement I assumed they showered on newbies. Naturally, to celebrate the next day’s journey toward a commendable new lifestyle I downed a Big Mac and 3 scoops of Pralines ‘n Cream from Baskin Robbins.
WW asks newbies to arrive a little earlier than the meeting’s official start time (they must want to make sure they have time to give me hugs and tell me how glad they are to have me on board).
Naturally, I rushed from work to try to make it ahead of the 6pm meeting time, and as luck would have it, traffic was actually decent (a rare L.A. occurance) and I managed to arrive a few minutes early. I’d expected to be greeted at the door by a sunny, exuberant former fatty who couldn’t wait to be a part of my transformation. Instead I ran smack into a line of healthy backsides waiting to check in and be weighed.
Although I was obviously lost and unsure of myself, no one offered to assist me. So I wandered from counter to counter in the lobby until I saw a clipboard with ‘Registration Information’ on it. I filled out the short form and queued up behind three women who looked like they were waiting to be shot between the eyes.
What people forget is a journey to nowhere starts with a single step, too. –Chuck Palahnuik
I stiffened when I was called up to one of the standing cubicles set up for intake, where I was greeted with the monotone, heavily accented question, “Joo vanting new maimber-chip or joo been maimber bee-forrr?” I said I was a new “maimber.” No fanfare, no welcome, no attempt at a cordial smile.
She was more curious about whether I had reviewed the payment options. I had, and chose the Monthly Pass, which would allow me to go to unlimited meetings and access all of the program’s online tools. This type of membership is auto-renewed each month to whatever credit card you swipe when you sign up. Convenient…and a little pushy.
Next I was told to step up on a small rubber mat next to me which transmitted my weight to a digital read-out mounted on the wall next to my…I guess we will call her a counselor. She wrote it down, handed me a packet of papers, then prodded me toward the meeting room. This woman had apparently decided to reserve her voice for after work engagements, but hopefully the next employee would be a bit more interactive.
I assumed that the meeting would be illuminating, inspiring—a pep rally for the soul. I became a mental sponge, ready to soak up all the empowering information. I took a seat next to a fellow Michelin Man. The discussion was about conquering cravings and dealing with restaurants or family dinners.
I must admit, the information that was shared was very useful and the atmosphere, although not warm, was at least tepid. Meetings are ½ hour long and they really stick to that schedule. The leader is all fun and smiley for about 22 minutes—then bolts like a greyhound when the time is up. I still had questions, and my inner grumbling kicked in big time.
I left the meeting with the resolve to go back to the website and see if there was information there that I had missed that would explain, oh, I don’t know… how to actually do the freaking diet!!
About halfway to my house I realized there was a message on my phone. A familiar voice said, “This is Veight Vatchers callink. Joo forrrgut to take vit joo jer Menthly Pass number. Ve closink in few minutts, so joo can peek up tomorrow.” Wait, what? How could I forget something I didn’t even know I needed? And what the hell was she doing while I was sitting there for ½ hour in the meeting that she didn’t realize she’d failed to give me the most important piece of information? I guess she got distracted plotting how she and her boyfriend Boris were going to thwart “moose and squirrel.”
Later, when I tried to get information from the website I discovered I can’t login to get any of the in-depth information about the diet unless I have—you guessed it—my monthly pass number. Dammit, Natasha!
In reviewing the material that did manage to make its way into my hands, I discovered that “after every meeting there is a Getting Started Session for new and re-joining members, which lasts 30 minutes. Your leader will give you your first week’s Program materials and teach you the basics of the Weight Watchers program, so you can get started right away.” I must have misunderstood that there was an additional session when my group leader raced out of the building like she was fleeing the Titanic.
Oh, and here’s the kicker: Natasha decided on a weight-loss goal for me and hid it like an Easter egg near the back of my materials. I am apparently looking to lose only 10 percent of my current weight. Did she size me up and decide the most we’ll be able to do with this one is convince her stop after two cheeseburgers?
I feel a vein throbbing in my forehead. And this is only the sign up day! Tomorrow is my first actual eating day on Weight Watchers. Oh, joy!
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