Target membership

When you join Slimming World you might be asked for your Personal Achievement Target, which is your self-defined goal weight.

You can define your target as anything you like, within certain boundaries, and and also change it over time if you want.

If you achieve your Personal Achievement Target then you will qualify for Target Membership. This means you can weigh-in and attend any Slimming World group for free for the rest of your life.

You can keep your target membership, and access to all Slimming World online resources, indefinitely as long as you meet the following requirements:

  • Your weight stays within 3 lbs of your target weight (up or down)
  • You attend and weigh-in at a group at least once every 2 months

What happens if I go outside of the 3 lbs range?

If you are a Target Member and your weight varies by more than 3 lbs (up or down) from your Personal Achievement Target weight then you will start to be charged again for coming to group, and normal membership and attendance terms will also apply. However, once you get back to within 3 lbs of your target you regain your target membership.

Can I change my Personal Achievement Target?

If you reach your target and then decide you want to lose more weight, then your can amend your Personal Achievement Target – as long as it is by a minimum of 7 lbs below your previous target.

Slimming World doesn't want you to set unhealthily-low targets, so your consultant will not let you set a Personal Achievement Target that would give you a BMI of below 20 – which is defined as the lowest safe weight goal for slimmers.

Also if you drop by 4 lbs or more below this lowest safe target then you will be given four weeks to return to your target range before your membership is cancelled.


What is image therapy?

If you’re new to class, you’ve probably heard people talking about “image therapy” but you might not be sure exactly what it is.

The word “IMAGE” in a Slimming World context is actually an acronym which stands for Individual Motivation And Group Experience. It’s when the consultant, after making any announcements or giving a brief talk on something, goes round all the people in class to ask them about their week.

This is an opportunity for members to reflect upon their progress (or lack thereof), and to ask any questions they have about the Slimming World plan, or to seek inspiration from the consultant or class members.

What do people talk about?

I’ve heard lots of things discussed during IMAGE therapy, including recipe ideas and plans to deal with difficult upcoming events (such as weddings and dinners out). The consultant will often aim to head off any negative emotions, and instead try to focus members on practical steps that might turn their situation around.

It can also be tempting for members to turn their ‘go’ at speaking into a confessional session!

Do I have to take part?

No. You can decide, without stating any justification, that you don’t want to speak in front of the class. You can either opt out permanently by talking to your consultant in private, or you can opt out for just a week at a time if you just don’t feel like talking that day. And don’t worry about not speaking. Most people will not even notice you kept quiet, and those who do notice will understand why you might not want to join in – after all, we’ve all been there!

Will the consultant announce my weight?

The consultant will never tell anyone in class was you weight is, or what it was in the past. They will often highlight what you have lost that week, or in total since joining. For instance, they may say “Richard has lost 2 lbs this week, and a total of 1 st 7 lbs since starting 12 weeks ago!” When these losses are announced, it’s normally class etiquette to clap to congratulate the member.  The consultant will probably gloss over if you maintained or put on weight; instead focusing on only your total loss to day.

What are mini targets?

Your consultant may ask you if you want to set a mini target for the week ahead, which might be a weight loss target or a body magic goal. They will record the target on their tablet, and may mention it back to you the next week – but they will never criticise if you fail to make it. Some people don’t like to set mini targets as they feel they are setting themselves up for failure – but others like to use them as a motivational tool, and to help them keep focus for the week ahead. As with all things, it’s your decision about whether you want to join in.

Do I have to stay for IMAGE therapy?

No. There are plenty of people who come, get weighed, and go. We all lead busy lives, and we all understand that we don’t always have the time to stay for group. However, having said that, it’s almost always beneficial to stay for class and for the IMAGE therapy sessions if you can. The interaction with other members, and the individual support you will receive, can make all the difference in terms of motivation for the coming week.

I’ve had weeks where the last thing I wanted to do was sit in the group and admit what a terrible week / day I was having – but forced myself to stay, and then came out the end with a completely different outlook, and all fired up for the week ahead.

Slimming World Acronyms

I thought it might be useful to define a few Slimming World acronyms that are seen quite commonly on blogs and forums, for any new people that might not be sure what they mean.

CWCurrent Weight
EEExtra Easy - the name given to the standard Slimming World food optimisation plan
HEA (or HXA)Healthy Extra A - your measured daily allowance of dairy (milk, cheese, etc.)
HEB (or HXB)Healthy Extra B - your measured daily allowance of fibre (bread, cereals, crackers, etc.)
IMAGEIndividual Motivation And Group Experience - sometimes called "IMAGE Therapy" - the guided discussion that happens in group when the consultant goes from person to person
SOTMSlimmer of the Month - given out on the last week of the month to the person in class who lost the most weight in that month
SOTWSlimming of the Week - award given to the person in class who lost the most weight (excludes new members and those who gained in previous week)
SPSpeed Protein - a variation on the food optimisation plan where you only eat Speed and Protein foods, and no Free foods - meant to boost weight loss by removing carbs from your diet
SWSlimming World
SWStarting Weight
TWTarget Weight

I’ll add to this list as other ones occur to me. If you know of any I’ve missed, feel free to add them to the comments.


Eating in Slimming World Class

There’s a unwritten etiquette to eating in a Slimming World class.

If you’re having a Taster Night, then it’s expected for you to bring and eat something in class. But what about the rest of the time?

Depending on the time of day, and how much you have starved yourself prior to your weigh-in, may determine whether you feel compelled to eat in class. You may be fresh along from work, having skipped lunch, and starving hungry. You may have been out for a couple of hours of last-minute body magic, to try and burn off a couple of pounds. Or you might not have eaten at all for the last 3 days! And in those situations you may not have the energy to sit through a full hour of image therapy without some sustenance inside you. After all, all that clapping and encouraging other people is hard work!

But does that mean you can bring along your dinner, and munch your way through the entire class?

I go to a 5.30pm group, and pretty-much everyone is attending before having dinner. So it’s common to see people having a discrete snack – after weigh-in of course! Freshly purchased hi-fi bars seem to be a favourite, as well as fruit. Anything healthy, speedy or free seems to be fair game, although I’m not sure what reaction anyone would get if they started tucking into a big Tupperware dish of pasta.

I think it’s also fair to say that it may be frowned upon to try an order a Domino’s pizza or fish supper to be delivered to class! Whatever you indulge in a post-class blowout is between you and your maker, but it’s probably best not to be seen to be off-plan during the class itself – that is, unless you order enough pizza for everyone!

But that’s just my class. What’s your experience? Do people eat during your class?

What is a Countdown?

A countdown is a discounted pre-pay plan where you pay for a set number of classes in advance.

You can buy two types of Countdown:

  • A 6-week countdown, which costs the price of 5 classes, so you get 1 class free!
  • A 12-week countdown, which costs the price of 10 classes, so you get 2 classes free!

At certain times of the year there are also additional promotions for people who buy 12-week countdowns, where you typically get a free copy of a newly released book.

Buying a Countdown

You buy a Countdown at the normal check-in desk in class. You don’t need to give notice. Just tell the person checking you in that you want to buy a 6 or 12 week countdown.

You’ll need to specify any holidays you want to take at the time of purchase, which will be entered into the computer and automatically applied so that you aren’t paying for those holiday weeks! Once bought, however, you can’t change the holidays, so think ahead!

Using the Countdown

On subsequent weeks you still need to check-in as normal. Your account will be checked on the computer, and you’ll be told how many weeks left you have on your countdown, and when it expires. At the end of your countdown you can choose to buy another or go back to paying week by week.

I use countdowns all the time, and I feel they offer some advantages:

  • You pay less to come for class – in the case of classed here in Ireland, it’s €7.50 per class under a countdown as opposed to €9.00 when paying week by week
  • You don’t have to worry about remembering to bring cash – I’m so used to paying with cards for everything these days that I often don’t have enough cash in my wallet
  • It motivates you to attend – If you’ve already paid for it, you’re more likely to go!

If you’re in the middle of a countdown and qualify for a free week at class – such as for a Club 10, or when you take advantage of an introduce a friend promo – you can save up those free weeks till the end of the countdown (you don’t lose them!). The computer may not prompt the person doing check-in that you’re due a free week, but it’ll still be stored in the system, so don’t be afraid to ask for it!