How a Closed Facebook Group & Weight Watchers Helped Me Lose 94.6 Pounds

Tim Sohn

Tim Sohn has lost 94.6 pounds since January 2012 while on the Weight Watchers program. He partially attributes his success to inspiration found in a closed Facebook group set up by his meeting leader.

On Tuesday, Aug. 27, I reached my Weight Watchers goal – I lost 94.6 pounds since January 2012. I wouldn’t have been able to accomplish this feat without the constant support of my wife, Joy (who has also lost about 55 pounds on the program), other family and friends, my meeting leaders Jennifer and Crystal, and all the Weight Watchers members in our Port Jervis, N.Y., chapter. But there has been another resource that has really helped me get through the last few months of reaching my goal: Facebook.

That’s right. I said Facebook.

Closed Facebook Group

Several months ago, our meeting leader Crystal Duncan Venetti created a closed Facebook group intended only for Weight Watchers classes that she leads. The page now has 59 likes, and it has been an amazing source of inspiration, especially for people who can’t stay for weekly meetings because of other obligations.

“The reason for the group is a place where we can bring our thoughts, feelings, expressions where they are fully understood, a place where answers and suggestions could be found. A post from one member asked, ‘What’s for breakfast?’ She had gotten so many replies. I loved it. Everyone had something different, but in the end we all had ideas that we could pull from when we, too, are looking for something ‘a little different for a change,’” said Venetti.

So, how does a Facebook closed group work? According to Facebook’s website, “anyone can see the group and who’s in it. Only members see posts.” Members and the group leader can post text, photos, videos, or questions, or members can attach a file.

The other two options the social network has for groups are: secret groups, which provide access only for members to see the group, who’s in it, and what they post. Open groups allow anyone to see the group, its participants, and posts.

The closed Facebook group allows Weight Watchers members in the group, and Crystal, the group administrator, to post messages to the whole group.

Weight Watchers Inspiration

These are just some of the types of posts members have shared in this group. (I won’t get too specific because it is a closed group):

1) Recipes;
2) Experiences throughout the week regarding eating out (or in) and how they tackled it;
3) Changes made in eating and exercise habits;
4) Questions about how many points certain foods are;
5) Advice and support for other group members; and
6) Jokes.

In addition, Crystal posts links to helpful resources such as recipes and articles on the Weight Watchers website and responds quickly to questions in the closed group. She also posts meeting reminders.

Onward to maintenance! (This is when Weight Watchers members figure out how many Points Plus values they can eat in a day to stay at the same weight).

Related Story: The Skinny on How Weight Watchers Uses Social Media

Readers: Have you used social media as part of the Weight Watchers program? Let us know in the comments below.

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