20 March 2014

Betting on Weight Loss: Motivation Booster or Stress Caused?

PUKAS. (pronouce: ˌpuː - kɑːz) It's my native language that means DRAW
Diet Bet: Motivation Booster or Stress Caused?, diet buddy, weight loss story
A few months back, my diet buddy and I decided to use financial rewards method to provide us strong incentive to ditch bad habits and finally to lose weight. The game plan is similar to the one on dietbet.com. Everyone is to contribute $50 to a fund, and this money will refund to us at the end of the month IF we hit the weight loss goal. If one of us is losing weight and the others are not, the money will goes to the winner. But if none of us are losing weight, then this is what we call 'pukas.' The money will remain there and will be carry forward to the next month. We invited some friends to join the challenge. We thought, the more participant the merrier and the higher the pressure will be. This automatic pressure can actively keep our internal motivation high. The fear of losing dough or the motivations to make profit from others who failed is likely to help us to stick with the weight loss program. It's lose weight or lose your money. I suppose it make sense, isn't it?
Diet Bet: Motivation Booster or Stress Caused?, diet buddy, weight loss story, weight loss quotes
But some friends we invited to join the bet politely rejected the idea. The reason? Their husband give them no permission to join. Oh, their excuse seriously cracked me up, they really do. Friends, if you're happen to read this now, I'm sorry. I don't understand in the first place why do you guys need your husband's permission to lose weight? This is your body, you're in charge. You're in charge of managing your health. You're in charge of your workout time. You hold the responsibility to watch what you eat. The idea to make a bet on your weight loss is for powerful motivation and accountability. I repeat, for motivation and accountability. That's it. Actually the real issue here is the competitive weight loss game itself and the risk of losing your money at stake. So the 'husband's permission' is just a lame excuse, I guess. I understand that when there's money involved it probably will makes the weight loss challenge a family matter. So in the end only three of us agreed to place cash bets on whether we can lose the unwanted kilos.

For update, it has been 3 months since we started and I have lost...lost to the game twice. And our latest weigh-in was 'pukas.'

Making a Diet Bet on Your Weight Loss: The Pros and Cons  
Diet Bet: Motivation Booster or Stress Caused?, diet buddy, weight loss story, weight loss quotes
PRO -  Weight Loss Betting is a MOTIVATION BOOSTER
Everyone loves winning money. To win cash, you have to lose weight, reach your weight loss goal. It's that pretty simple, right. It's a good motivator. If your money were at stake you are more likely than others to stick to the diet and exercise changes that make weight loss possible. You don’t want to lose your own money, and you don’t want to lose somebody else’s.

CONS - Weight Loss Betting is a STRESS CAUSED
I don't know about others but for me trying to lose weight is a stressful thing. Your expectations about weight loss facing the limits of your will power may cause stress. Like that is not enough, keeping the money you've bet that you cannot afford to lose may be increasing your stress levels. According to research, chronic stress can affect your metabolism, promoting fat storage, and increasing cravings for sugary, high-fat "comfort foods".

The pressure to win may also lead into unhealthy manner of losing weight. You can still lose weight by taking laxatives to expel your waste after eating hoping you can get rid of unwanted calories. But that's not healthy.

Read also:  Obsessed with Fiber Supplements for Weight Control

Also, what happens when the weight loss bet is over? Can you keep the weight off? Can you stop weight gaining after that? If individuals don't have the right education in place, they're apt to fall back on their bad habit and will gain all the weight back and an extra few kilos.

So would you lose weight if money were at stake? Would money be enough motivation for you to lose weight?
I love feedback, leave your opinion in the comments. 

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  1. I think it speaks more to their husband's belief that they couldn't succeed, actually. Which is sad. :(

  2. I have seen these diet bets and weight loss "competitions" around a lot. I have never wanted to join one, as I do feel like it would be too much stress. I'm pretty OCD with all my numbers (calories in, calories out) and it just seems like even when the numbers line up, sometimes you still don't get your "loss". There are so many factors. I did really well in the beginning, and even though my numbers are similar, the weight loss has slowed to a crawl. I definitely know I could do better by shaking up my eating (I'm still not good with the eating), but even if I could be GUARANTEED a weight loss if I followed a certain diet, I'm not sure if I could give up some things. But truth is, there are no guarantees.

    I do participate in several other reward programs based on my activity (Achievemint, Everymove, Earndit) and I am participating in PACT ... and there is a monetary stake there. But while I can't say "I will lose a pound a week" guaranteed, I CAN absolutely say I will workout every single day, and I will track my food every day, but those actions are completely within my control. Weightloss "should" be ... but there are just so many factors that leave it a little up in the air. I remember watching "The Biggest Loser" weigh-ins, when the coach and the contestant were just shocked (by the amount of weight lost, or not lost) while other times it did go as expected. You just don't know which way it is going to go ...

  3. I love the marbles in the jar idea! that is a great visual reminder!!!!
    “hugs” Crystelle
    Crystelle Boutique
    Happy Spring!!

  4. Thanks for sharing nice post for weight loss.


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