A review of DietBet

            Early this year, just after the holidays, I joined my first DietBet. Basically, this is a website/app/company that has you bet money against your own ability to lose weight in a certain amount of time. You can chose the amount of your wager, and join a group of other people, sometimes fitness celebrities, in the competition. Everyone puts the same amount of money in the pot, and whoever who reaches their weight loss goal (a loss of 4% of your body weight in 4 weeks–same goal assigned to everyone) gets to split the pot.
            Weigh-ins are confirmed at the beginning and end of the contest by photos of you on the scale, and several checks are used to be sure you aren’t gaming the system. They have several contests ongoing at the same time, and you can even enter more that one.
            I entered this right about the time I was approaching a mini-goal, but felt I had stalled. It pushed me over my goal and I won. I got my ten bucks bet plus a little more.
            What I liked about it:
1. It added another motivator–a direct financial one. Of course there are piles of financial benefits to having a healthy weight, but this makes it more tangible. And I’ve mentioned before how powerful good motivators can be.
2. It involves a deadline. This helped me most on the weekends. I tend to sometimes stall or even reverse weight loss on some weekends, taking a few more liberties with food choices. But having a deadline kept me from overindulging so much. And four weeks is a doable amount of time.
3. It was useful during a lull in my drive to continue. As I mentioned before, I had hit a little slump in the weight loss before starting. Sometimes switching things up a little and trying something new is what is needed to pull through a time like that without throwing in the towel and reverting to old bad habits.
4. It involved a reasonable goal. Four percent weight loss over four weeks is a reasonable goal for most overweight or obese people. It might not be a sustainable rate of loss for the entirety of a large weight loss amount, as there are often plateaus or a slowing in the speed of weight loss at various points along the path to a healthy weight. But for a four week period of time, it works.
5. Its social. The game allows for people to share comments, workouts, what they are eating, etc. This can be really helpful, especially for people who don’t have friends or family working toward a healthy lifestyle around them. Positive peer pressure can only help. Built is accountability is great!
            So, those are my thoughts. Some personalities might find a DietBet sort of challenge more helpful than others. If you are stalled and need some extra motivation, I’d say check it out.
Of course, as always, don’t forget my disclaimer, and check with your own doctor before attempting this or any other diet/weight loss plan.

{ 6 comments… add one }

  • Jen September 23, 2013, 11:24 AM

    Thanks for the review! Question, the official weigh in photos, are they posted for the whole group to see or just the official dietbet moderators? I’m not entirely sure I’m comfortable putting my face and weight out there for the world to see.

    • Sarah October 3, 2013, 10:23 AM

      No, the weigh in photos are just for the people running the site as far as I know. They just want to see some evidence that you are truthful in what you are entering as before and after weights. I know exactly what you are saying about not wanting it all out for the world to see–I feel the same way!

  • best fat loss diet April 26, 2014, 2:23 PM

    Exceptional post however I was wondering if you could write a litte more on this topic?
    I’d be very grateful if you could elaborate a little bit further.
    Many thanks!

  • Laura August 4, 2015, 11:08 AM

    I am currently doing my first one which is a six month challenge called The Transformer. I did not realize that they take 25% each round. I do not know if this is true for each DietBet challenge, but I know for certain it is for this one. It was disappointing to win less than what I bet on Round 1. I am waiting until November, when it ends, to determine if I will participate in another challenge.

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