Okay, for those of you looking for the short and sweet point: Noom is a nope for me.
Now, for the longer story…
I was unhappy with my weight around my birthday, so I decided to use some birthday money to invest in 4 months of a Noom subscription. Noom is a weight loss app that you can download. The cost varies based on whatever special they are running, but I think at the time it was like $120 for the 4 months.
Noom is a four-part process:
- You weigh in each morning and track it on a chart.
- You log your food throughout the day. It gets divided into green, yellow and red zones to help you focus on eating healthier food (no food is off-limits).
- You get a few articles to read each day which are designed by behavioral psychologists to help you make sustainable lifestyle changes, rather than being on a restrictive ‘diet’.
- You get access to a “goal specialist” and a “group coach”, as well as a support group of other people going through the program at the same time.
Month 1 thoughts (October-ish):
I started out strong. I weighed myself and logged it every single morning and tracked every bit of food that I ate throughout the day. I lost about 4 pounds within the first 10 days and then just stuck there for the rest of the month. At this point, I was enjoying the reading and learning all the little psychological tricks on why we do what we do. I was excited about Noom and brought it up in conversation with my friends (probably too much). After week two, my goal specialist reached out. I was hoping for someone who would really help me feel motivated, but instead he was kind of annoying and each chat felt like homework. Basically, every post ended with a question and it was a little more time consuming than I expected. As for my group, the group coach posts prompts on the page and then only a few people in the group bother to respond. During the first month, I responded to a few prompts each week.
Month 2 thoughts (November-ish):
I’m still reading the daily articles, but I’m finding them less interesting at this point. I’m still weighing myself in on a daily basis, but I haven’t lost any weight. Instead I’m up a pound, I’m down a pound, I’m up two pounds… and it’s pissing me off. I’m still tracking my foods, but not 100%. I find my goal specialist irritating and his responses are starting to feel canned. I ignore him for a couple weeks and he keeps posting “hey, we haven’t talked in awhile and I’d love to know how you’re doing.” I feel guilty, but not guilty enough to deal with him. My group is becoming less active and I probably only post once a week.
Month 3 thoughts (December-ish):
Hello holidays! The daily scale thing is starting to make me a little crazy. I know that everyone fluctuates, but the up and down is starting to wear on me. I’m more of a weigh-yourself-once-a-week kinda girl. I’m still on average about 3-ish pounds less than when I started Noom and with the holiday treats surrounding me that is certainly a win. The articles seem to be getting longer and more plentiful. I’m completely over the goal specialist and the group coach. Both are basically nothing but canned responses and prompts and barely anyone in my group comments at all on our group page. I decide to give myself a break for a week and I don’t log in at all between Christmas and New Year’s. I feel like my brain is a lot healthier when I stop weighing myself daily and tracking every bite.
Month 4 thoughts (January-ish)
I’m done. I still have a few weeks left on my subscription, but I’m so over it. Once again, I feel like a ‘diet’ failure and each time I see the app on my phone I’m reminded that Noom has worked for thousands of people… but not me. I’m in that “I’m too fluffy and I ate too much over the holidays” phase, and I think maybe if I could just force myself to use the app again I’ll do it *right* this time.
Monday comes around again and I do my weigh in and start tracking my food again. By Wednesday I’ve stopped. Putting this much focus on food and my weight is making me unhappy and stressed. On most days I’m still 2-3 pounds down from where I started. Did Noom help me lose weight? Possibly. However, any time I buckle down for a couple weeks and forgo snacks that is typically what I would lose. For free.
When it comes down to it, I know what’s healthy and not healthy. I know I should drink more water. I know I should be more active each day. It’s not magic, it’s just hard. The Noom app didn’t work for me. Maybe I just wasn’t in the right headspace for it. Maybe I’m just not a food tracking sort of person. Any which way, I’m pulling the plug.