This is the first and last time I'm going to mention this. Everyone near and dear to me is bored to tears about this. Dee starts shaking and asking me to change the subject. Little Sister Edel immediately begins to cry and walks out of the room. Even my mother, who is the living embodiment of encouragement in relation to everything I do, has started to glaze over in the manner of a Stepford wife thinking about cleaning products. They're all, in short, sick to the back teeth, but it's finally over. I've finally won.
Since the beginning of September, I've been on something of a diet. Now, I'd be the last person to admit this to anyone, but since no one actually reads this (all the comments are left by me, in various guises - no one mentioned or featured here actually exists. Even I'm a figment of my imagination) it's safe to go on about it, at least for one entry. Last July, when my evil witchy physiotherapist (who, by the way, I would now lay my life down for, I love her *that* much) said that I had to lose weight, I immediately punched her in the stomach and ran gibbering from the room. I would not diet. I would not. No one could make me, how dare they suggest it, what the fuck was her problem, etc. I was very very angry. I went home and ate some crisps.
But then I gots to thinking - if you've got a bad back, of course carrying about heavy things aren't going to help. And so the logic of maybe losing an inch here or there started to dawn on me and I thought I'd give the whole heave-hoe a go, for a bit at least.
The first Weight Watchers
meeting I went to was *exactly* like the Fat Fighters sketches in Little Britain. EXACTLY like it. The SAME PRECISELY. In my head at least. The indignity of queuing up in a line to be weighed by a stranger, and to have your weight written down and discussed by a stranger. To watch these world weary ladies, each of us slightly portlier than the last, all shuffling forward nervously doing our utmost not to look at each other, staring around at feet and shoes and fussing with coats and bags. To be handed a card with a computer chip in it, that would keep track of your precise weight changes, up as well as down, right down to the last ounce. It was all too much to take in, and I hated it. I would never go back. This was a daft idea, it'd never work, this lot were mental.
Right until our leader started speaking. Yes, they're called Leaders. And She was Our Leader. And I love her even more than I love my physiotherapist (and that's saying something. I've got a lot of love for these ladies in me, if you know what I'm saying. And I think you might). Our Leader is called Mary and she's a miracle worker. Mary Our Leader, you see, talks sense. She says things like if you eat too much, you're not going to lose weight. She says other things like if you exercise more, you'll lose weight quicker. She occasionally says things in rhyming couplets, but we ignore when that happens. And every week, she finds different ways to say the same thing, and manages to be inspiration each and every time.
If you stick with the programme long enough - and it's a programme supported by websites and leaflets and handbooks and trackers and points and point finders and a monthly magazine and all sorts of things you couldn't begin to imagine (WW is something of an entire sub-culture in itself) you do start to develop a form of Stockholm syndrome. Every week, the weigh-in becomes something that you both dread and look forward. Mary Our Leader is a wonder at the weigh-ins. She grabs your card, has a quick look at your name, and then looks you in the eye and greets you like a long-lost friend, as if she knew your name all along and was just double checking the spelling. She hugs you - HUGS YOU! - if you lose more than 2 lbs in a week, and gives you a supportive smile if you gain weight. A hug from Mary Our Leader is definitely better than the weight that you've lost. Mary Our Leader is a wonder of a woman.
The second week I attended one of the smug & skinny girls I was furiously giving evils to (because WHAT THE HELL ARE SKINNY GIRLS DOING THERE?!) was awarded with her Gold Membership, because she'd reached her Goal Weight. Goal Weight is the weight you decided on with Your Leader when you joined WW, the weight that's right for your height and weight, the healthiest for your BMI. The Golden Ticket, the Great Beyond, the more than likely Unattainable Ambition. Smug & skinny girl, I found out that week, had lost FOUR STONE. Go smug & skinny girl. You carry on being smug and skinny. Mary Our Leader asked her all sorts of questions, as a kind of inspirational talk for the rest of us, about what she'd done and how she'd done it and how long it had taken her, and smug & skinny girl talked of giving up bread and walking everywhere and watching portions and eating vegetables. I thought to myself two things: (1) That sounds boring and (2) I'm never going to do it.
Today, Ladies, Gents, Moo - I was the smug girl in my class. I'm not claiming skinny by any means, but here I am at my Goal Weight. Unfortunately I can't make the classes run by Mary Our Leader any more thanks to Ridiculous New Job's ridiculous working hours, but I'm attending Assumpta, and she's almost (but not quite) as good (Assumpta doesn't hug, y'see). I got a round of applause, and had to announce my total weight loss (which I'm not putting here, but it's not far off smug & skinny's), and they even made me stand up, which was embarrassing beyond imagination. And then Assumpta My Leader asked what I'd done and how I'd done it and how long it had taken me, and I found myself talking of giving up bread and walking everywhere and watching portions and eating vegetables. I didn't mention taking up smoking again as a means to battle food cravings, because although it's acknowledged among us long-termers at WW (a long-termer is simply someone who comes to more than three meetings) as a recognised diet supplement, it's very frowned upon.
But yay me, and go the Shazzle. I've not been harping on about it here because it isn't a weight-loss blog (and there are loads of brilliant ones out there, for example dietchick
) and I thought it'd be embarrassing to start on about it and then stop when I (as I assumed I would) inevitably failed (like one other, kinda famous English actress blogger did, whose name shall begin with Emma and end Kennedy).
I got my prize. And the prize for reaching Goal Weight? A big box of chocolates.
Only kidding. It's a naff keyring. *So* not worth the effort.