Is Online Dieting Right For You?

By Martin Brown

Happy Black woman holding scaleOnline dieting is not the weight loss program for every one, but it may be the perfect program for you. Many of them, like startyourdiet.com, offer free basic membership. Of course they have a deluxe package, and they don’t object to the idea of selling you something and making a profit, but at this and many other sites you can reach your ideal weight without ever lightening your wallet as well.

Being honest to yourself about what approach works best for you is the place to start. Some of us need programs like Weight Watchers where we go to weekly meetings and get the encouragement of others.

But personalities, like our bodies, come in all shapes and sizes, and many of us, while having a sincere desire to lose weight, are just not the meeting type. It could be that you have a hectic and constantly changing schedule, not to mention a job that requires out-of-town travel. Or you’re just not comfortable talking with other people that you just met about your weight loss goals.

Online dieting allows you to set your own schedule, whether morning, noon, or night, the Internet is ready whenever you are. But to make an online dieting program work for you, there are four important things you need to know:

Know Your Intentions: Really important, because this is where and when you set your goals. What’s your weight loss motivation? It can be anything from improved health, increased energy, or finally fitting into those cute shorts you bought two years ago. Perhaps it’s all of the above. We are all motivated by different factors and you need to know what will get you going on a weight loss program and keep you wanting to stay with it.

Know Your Options: As we said, there are basic programs that you can do at no charge. There are also more comprehensive programs that have a wide range of costs. So sit yourself down, budget 90-minutes to do some research, and let the comparison shopping begin. Remember this is an important decision because you want a program that works well for your needs and your goals.

Know Your Schedule: One very important key to achieving success with an online dieting program is to monitor your progress, if not daily, then at least four times weekly. Skipping entire weeks is going to leave you where you started and that means those cute shorts are probably going to stay in your closet for another year or more.

Know A Friend: While you may not need a whole group of strangers to offer you encouragement, you would be wise to have at least one friend with whom you share what you’re doing and the goal that you have set for yourself. Tell him or her that you’re going to give them weekly updates on your progress and do just that. You’re a lot more likely to run short on motivation if you’re the only one who knows what you are trying to accomplish.

Now get to it! The only person standing in the way of you reaching your ideal weight is you. Online dating can be a wonderful way to change that reality. Now go find those cute shorts, put them on a hook in your bedroom where you will see them everyday, and try them on at least once a week. YOU CAN DO THIS!

SMW’s Top Picks for Online Dieting Sites:

Weightwatchers.com: The basic online program starts at $16.95 a month and includes the following: monthly e-letter with recipes and updates on products. Also offers live advice, an online tool that tracks your progress and calculates food points and a variety of other resources and tools.

e-Dietes.com: Offers live support from registered dieticians, custom meal planning guide, meal and food tracker/log, live personal training and more. Special introductory price of $17.96 for first 4 weeks.

Biggest Loser Club: Includes a food tracker tool, dining out guide, expert advice, inspirational stories and much more starting at  $19.00 per month.

Diet Watch: Offers a food tracker tool, custom meal plans, food tips, exercise tracker, online support group, expert advice and other services to keep you motivated starting at $11.96 per month.

More Diet and Weight Loss Articles on SMW:

The 7 Wonders of a Healthy Mediterranean Diet

Calorie Counting Goes High Tech

6 Ways to Burn More Calories