I’m Going Back on Weight Watchers

Walks into the room
Feels like a big balloon
I said, Hey, girl, you are beautiful
Diet coke and a pizza, please *


Sigh. It’s time. I can hardly fit into any of my cold-weather clothes and suddenly I have dimples. Not the cute kind in your chin but the ugly kind on your thighs.

Weight Watchers worked for me in 2003. I lost 35 pounds over about six months. Kept track of everything I ate, went to meetings, weighed in every week. Everyone was proud of me and I looked great. Slowly but surely the weight came back. Do you like how I phrased that? “The weight came back.” As if I had nothing to do with the process; the weight just sort of forced itself back onto my body as I watched helplessly.

Well, that’s kind of how it feels, especially if you’re a woman of a certain age who works out regularly, eats sensibly most of the time, and doesn’t like to go to bed hungry. I remember when dropping a few pounds was as easy as saying, “OK, let’s see. I won’t eat that pint of ice cream today.” Voila.

My mom, as always, is very supportive. “I know you can do it!” “But if I can’t . . .” “But you can!” “But if I can’t . . .”I’m trying to convince myself I’ll still be a good person if I can’t. Does this sort of thinking set me up for not trying as hard?

As everyone knows, you can’t start a diet properly until you’ve stuffed yourself silly. This method works on two levels. First, you “get it out of your system” by eating everything you want, and second, you make yourself so sick of food that cereal made out of wood shavings actually sounds good. I loaded up on last-chance treats like those damn Hostess chocolate pudding pies (now with more lard!). I’m sure the bored clerk at Walgreen’s could not have cared less that I was buying a cartload, but I still felt the need to explain. “You know, these are really hard to find.” (And they are.)And, yes, I just now called it a diet. Let’s be real. Any time you can’t eat whatever you want, whenever you want, in whatever quantity you want: sister, you’re on a diet. But if it helps you to call it a lifestyle change or a way of life, that’s fine; in fact, that’s how Weight Watchers encourages you to think of it. I do plan to attend meetings and weigh in each week, but my goals are less about numbers and more about visuals.I want:

  • A Zumba butt. This is a round, rock-hard butt that, really, is my current butt divided in half.
  • A Zumba stomach. This may be harder to achieve. My stomach is so soft and puffy my cat prefers it to the pillows.
  • Fewer thigh dimples.
  • Fewer chins.
  • And forget Green Pants 1 and 2, I’m going to fit back into my skinny jeans.
If you want to join Weight Watchers:
  • It’s a good plan. It’s flexible and sensible and encourages healthful habits.
  • If you’re not interested in the meetings, the Web site offers tons of support and information.
  • Whatever happens, you’re still a good person.

* Today’s lyrics are courtesy of Mika.