Three amazing websites

Posted March 23rd, 2006 by Penny Wise

Of course, I'm used to Simple Savings being an amazing website already grin but in my search for Vault information to get me started on my weight loss journey, I have been enlightened - or blown away more like, by three more astoundingly good ones, wow! I typed in 'weight loss' in the Vault index and took a look at the first ones that 'jumped out' at me. The first one was titled 'Do away with expensive weight loss plans', which was encouragement enough for me - I found Weight Watchers a very expensive way to lose a measly five kilos a couple of years ago! Anyway, the hint from Kylie Gray spoke of how her GP had recommended Annette Sym's cookbooks, which funnily enough I was just talking about last week after reading an article in That's Life magazine. Kylie managed to lose eight kilos in the first two weeks - awesome stuff! I had visited Annette's website ( before but only briefly so decided to go back and pay it more attention - what an enjoyable experience! I found Annette's comments and advice really positive and down to earth, from someone who has 'been there and done that' and has heard all the excuses. This website is a great place to go to dispel a lot of weight loss myths and get a sneaky peek of some delicious sounding recipes. Click on 'Annette's Tips' for information that is really helpful and easy to understand.

My first Vault recommendation was motivating enough, but the next one was just mindblowing! A member called Amanda wrote of her experiences using a website called FitDay ( which you could join for free and track your progress while trying to lose weight. What an absolutely fascinating website! And what a wake-up call. The information here is just staggering, I can't believe it's free, but it is! For example, from my food calculator I can tell you I have consumed 135 calories so far today (OK, well I've only had breakfast!) I'm not sure if that's good or bad but I'm sure I will learn as I go along. I joined up and straight away had a great time working out all the whistles and bells. I can find out each day or week how many calories I have consumed or burned, the nutritional value of what I'm eating and whether I'm meeting the requirements that are right for me. What I did learn is that the little blob on the graph which marks where my body weight is in proportion to my height is that I am much to close for my liking to being classified as 'severely overweight' - aghhh! If I didn't have enough of a reason to lose weight before, I sure as hell do now! I've never been one for weighing food and counting calories, so this website is great as it does it all for you and tells you when you're getting it right. As Amanda says, there is everything you need to track your fat, protein, carbs and calories and monitor your metabolism and activities - every exercise you do can also be entered into your reports and it will tell you how effective it is. I think this could be just what I need!

The third awesome website I visited is that of Oprah Winfrey - don't groan! I always used to scorn daytime television as entertainment for people who don't have anything better to do, but I have recently been reminded what a legend this woman is. For three days straight I tuned in to Oprah when I was knocked out with the flu and every single day she had me in floods of tears with her various crusades - wow, it's just as well I don't watch her every day or I would be an emotional wreck! Anyway, when I got the latest Simple Savings newsletter I read Fiona's recommendations about Oprah's Debt Diet and thought I would visit the website ( What a fountain of inspiration, I haven't even got as far as the Debt Diet yet, I've been soaking up information about Oprah's weight loss Boot Camp! More great tips from a woman who has been through it over and over. How much more positive can one get after reading that lot!

So, now I have heaps of great free advice on what to eat and what not to eat. Not that I've ever been much of a one for scoffing cakes, biscuits or chips - my nemesis is cheese! I was unable to tolerate dairy products until I was 18 and I think I've been making up for it ever since. It's hard to be a cheese-free zone when you're vegetarian and I read that Oprah's Boot Camp allows one bowl of pasta in 12 weeks - I couldn't survive, I live on the stuff! Maybe that's the problem, but if I don't eat meat I have to eat something! I guess I'm just going to have to deviate a little and make sure I exercise. Starting today!

I've got myself a weight loss buddy too! My friend Maxine has a resolve of steel and she's already started walking, so she's going to come and call for me every morning and we'll walk together. I'm going to dust off my exercise bike and try and manage half an hour each day - doesn't matter if it's at 10.00pm at night in front of the TV, as long as I pedal off my pasta! So, here it is, my Habit Changer for April (I know it's premature but seize the day I say!)

My goal is: To lose 10kg by my next birthday. (FitDay reliably informs me that this is in 268 days' time, therefore I need to lose 0.261kg per week) Sounds easy when it's put like that!

My plan is: To cut down my portions (so that I only eat enough for one person, not a whole family), to track all my food intake on FitDay and to walk and/or cycle every day.

My trigger is: Two actually. One is to stick what I call my 'hippo' photo on the fridge. This was taken a couple of years ago when I was at my largest and I am standing in a bright red swimsuit. It's one of those ones which has a built-in skirt, which I thought would be flattering and hide my hips and thighs, but it only succeeded in making me look like one of the dancing hippos from Fantasia - the swimsuit was ceremoniously burned but the image lives on! My second trigger is my weight graph from FitDay, I have printed it out and I'm going to make darn sure I don't cross the line from 'moderately' into 'severely overweight'.

My reward will be: Once Maxine and I have lost 5kg each, we are rewarding ourselves with a day of pampering at the local spa!

OK, I'm ready! Want to join me? The more the merrier! If you have any tips to share or want to lose weight and get fit and would like some encouragement, hide('penny')drop me a line and we'll lose weight together with the Vault!

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