Lose, you losing loser who loses!
June 20, 2003 4:44 PM   Subscribe

The biggest losers in the Blogosphere. Metafilter does not do the discussion of weight very well. However, I'd like to introduce you to a group of online folk who have found a way to help each other in losing weight. Meet mtpolitics. He had a moment of body based angst. Da Goddess had an idea. And so a project was born. (Have a care for the pipe, 'cause it ain't real big.) The blogs of the people involved in this contest might offer a unique diversion as well.
posted by Wulfgar! (27 comments total)
This is competitive weight loss? I'm not sure I'm real comfortable with that myself, especially the part about comparing total pounds lost, but if that helps some people get motivated then I suppose it's a good thing.
posted by JanetLand at 5:29 PM on June 20, 2003

It's not "competitive" in a sporting sense...only in a jovial, good-natured sense, intended solely to spur the participants to achieve their goals.
posted by davidmsc at 5:38 PM on June 20, 2003

I know people who have done this--not online, though. For some people it works, and for others, it doesn't. In my limited experience, it seems to work better for people who don't have a lot of weight to lose--I'm thinking along the lines of people who would like to drop 20 pounds or so, whose clothes are maybe getting a bit tight, that sort of thing.
posted by eilatan at 6:22 PM on June 20, 2003

That describes me perfectly.
posted by davidmsc at 7:11 PM on June 20, 2003

I don't know...in college, when I noticed I had packed a few pounds on, I realized that I really had no choice--if I was to continue my debauched, indulgent ways, I needed to counteract them somehow...so I became a compulsive runner. Which, honestly, honestly, is an unequaled high...a surrogate addiction which has lasted.
Let me add, by the way, that as a man of very modest vertical proportions, I always found it puzzling that people would find it so easy to cajole me, while ribbing someone who tipped the scales slightly was somehow off limits...strange because one does have some measure of control over one...
posted by ghastlyfop at 7:31 PM on June 20, 2003

...while you're stuck with the other.
posted by ghastlyfop at 7:32 PM on June 20, 2003

I'm already stressing myself out with my weight loss, don't need any more stress.

I think anything that gets people motivated is great, but I think a general posting area for "I lost x pounds" might motivate more and keep people 1. honest and 2. from trying WAY to hard and hindering their progress.

Also, its kinda quirky because some goals are higher than others. For instance, right now I stand about 28% to my goal for the 12 month period I am in (April-April). But my 28% may be more or less than someone elses 28% by dramatic numbers.
posted by benjh at 9:11 PM on June 20, 2003

Have a care for the pipe, 'cause it ain't real big.

I'm sorry about your luck :-)
posted by shadow45 at 9:34 PM on June 20, 2003

It's a pretty common thing to setup something like this. It's basically applying social pressure to keep yourself on track. This is why people work out together, run together, and go on diets together. It provides more motivation to do something, because you either don't want to disappoint the other person, or you want to "win" against them in whatever you do.

The internet doesn't quite feel the same as running or dieting with someone I see in real life, but it's better than going it alone.
posted by mathowie at 10:02 PM on June 20, 2003

MetaFilter: It isn't the same as real life, but it's better than going it alone.
posted by SPrintF at 10:10 PM on June 20, 2003

Metafilter does not do the discussion of weight very well.

This is because the fat are generally excuse mongers, and refuse to exercise. Any mention of this reality, any clarity into their unhealthy lifestyle leads to shameless calls of "childhood", "genes", "disorder", etc. Not a particularly level headed debate.

However, the sites mentioned above are a refreshing step forward.
posted by four panels at 10:27 PM on June 20, 2003

Metafilter also doesn't do well with threads about me starting to lose my hair
posted by crunchburger at 10:27 PM on June 20, 2003

Please, let's not start a fat thread.
posted by crunchburger at 10:28 PM on June 20, 2003

leads to shameless calls of "childhood", "genes", "disorder", etc. Not a particularly level headed debate.

four panels, normally i would agree. However being the honest person i am, i'll admit right off that i'm just lain ol' lazy. i started to use a treadmill, now it's a clothes hanger. i bought a heavy bag and speed bag to work out, there they sit.

what i really need is a good, beautiful intelligent woman to keep me stimulated and nag me to death about the ever-present mountain dew and provide me with a "honey-do" list that involves lots of lifting and meaningless repetitive tasks. (sigh)
posted by schlaager at 10:46 PM on June 20, 2003

Yeah, I'm another lazy fat ass and when I eat with friends, I don't consume as much because I don't want to look like a pig. Of course I just go back home later and chow down. I guess the only way I'll lose weight it to be chained to a health-conscious person from now on...or you know, diet and exercise.
posted by lychee at 2:49 AM on June 21, 2003

Because, you know, comments like yours, four panels, are so conducive to level-headed debate, too.

My position has always been, and will continue to be, that my size is no one's business but mine and my doctor's. I have found that the application of social pressure doesn't really work for me, in terms of weight loss. I have other motivations which work a bit better for me and which probably wouldn't work for anyone else. But if it works for others--and it apparently does--then by all means, go for it.
posted by eilatan at 5:40 AM on June 21, 2003

Well, getting back to the first link, I don't think I would call this idea "social pressure" to lose weight. To me social pressure is would be people making remarks about your weight, implying you're lazy, etc. I think what's set up on this site is more a form of teamwork. But I think you can have teamwork without the competitive atmosphere that is generated by lists of how much weight each person has lost. I don't know why I'm wired this way, but if I've set myself to lose, say, 10 pounds, but I look at a list and somebody else has lost 20, then I think to myself that I should lose 20 as well. This is not real healthy, so a system like this would not work for me. On the other hand, I get a lot of inspiration and encouragement from this site.
posted by JanetLand at 6:43 AM on June 21, 2003

The internet doesn't quite feel the same as running or dieting with someone I see in real life, but it's better than going it alone.

...and we all know what a grotesquely obese porkmonger mathowie is. Uh, hoss, no offense, but last time I saw you, you - like me - were the spittin' image of Web-era ectomorphosity.
posted by adamgreenfield at 8:05 AM on June 21, 2003

the differences in goals does seem like an impediment - I could imagine people feeling cheated if they lost because they had a more ambitious goal, etc. Also, an internet site about weight loss for some reason strikes me as kind of funny, I guess just because sitting around in front of the computer too much is probably a big part of the problem. But really, it seems like a good thing in general, a little bit of community support, less effective than a jogging buddy, but better than nothing.

what is ectomorphosity? google didn't know.

re: matt, I have found that most people over 30 who are in good shape are in good shape because they have jogging partners, or get to the gym at least 4 days a week, or ride their bikes everywhere, or whatever. An injury has kept me from my regular program recently, and I'm feeling the difference.
posted by mdn at 8:44 AM on June 21, 2003

(and jonmc, no need to comment on how you live off a diet of deep fried pig fat and guinness but manage to remain skinny without so much as getting off the couch to change the channel; there are always exceptions :) )
posted by mdn at 8:54 AM on June 21, 2003

ectomorph: of a light or asthenic (slender, slight musculature - I didn't know this word either) type of body build. Basically, thin as a rail.

(I'm sitting right next to a big dictionary the editors use.)
posted by furiousthought at 9:43 AM on June 21, 2003

I should start endomorphilter, for those of us who are big folks, like other big folks, and enjoy talking to others of similar persuasions. 8-)
posted by mrbill at 1:35 PM on June 21, 2003

It looks like the Biggest Loser on the Blogosphere site is more than just a contest as on mtpolitics (which would only help a small percentage of people). It's a community where people can support each other and share information - recipes, exercise tips, other web sites. I should think it would be of, well, enormous help to many people.

Definitely a great alternative to Weight Watchers and like organizations where sure, they counsel a person, and provide nutritional information, but they also pressure people to buy supplements and fake food (ever heard any horror stories about what happens to people who live on that food for a few months?) - and charge plenty for it. They also sign up people who don't even need to lose weight. Hah. I'd join a web site like that instead, and save my money for things like great cookbooks, cute exercise wear, and for a bikini when I was all done with my renovations.

Oh, and Wulfgar! is probably too modest to mention this, but I noticed that he's number 5 on the list of the "Biggest Losers of the Week". Kudos, Wulfie.
posted by orange swan at 5:48 AM on June 22, 2003

If the only way these 'losers' can succeed is with crap like that then the double entendre is certainly deserved.
posted by HTuttle at 11:37 PM on June 22, 2003

What's surprising is the number of young'ns overweight these days. If you can't keep your weight under control in your teens and twenties, you might as well sign up for early entry into the heart attack club, because it sure doesn't get easier as you age.
And mdn, you're right. After some excessive slouching increased my geezer waist, I am back to biking everywhere and blading 3 loops of Central Park at least 3 times a week.
posted by HTuttle at 11:47 PM on June 22, 2003

Oh right, HTuttle, people who use the internet to garner information and support to help them improve their lives are definitely losers in the usual sense of the word.

posted by orange swan at 6:22 AM on June 23, 2003

I lost about 30 lbs a few years ago and being part of an online weightloss discussion forum was a big help.
posted by callmejay at 11:52 AM on June 23, 2003

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