When did the CD die? The CD format hasn't gone out with a fanfare - it has slithered slowly to a quiet demise silently joining VHS videos and cassette tapes. And the reason I know this? When my Andrew Johnson Hypnotherapy Weight Loss CD (£9.99) arrived I realised I had nothing to play it on apart from the DVD player attached to my TV. It was a shock.
So, while my colleague Tamsin was able to get on with trying this weight loss program out straight away, I had to spend some time finding someone to loan me a portable CD player. And that took a while too as most of my friends were like me. We have a stereo in the lounge complete with an amp and speakers - but this is for the turntable used to play our vinyl collection. Most of the time we use the iPod docking station.
On the plus side, Andrew Johnson's Weight Loss doesn't just come on CD. There's also the option to buy it in MP3 too. And a cheaper option too at £4.99.
Tamsin and I couldn't be more different. She's a fitness fanatic, while I'm a couch potato. She's keen on any sort of health improving gadget or gimmick. I'm keen on popcorn while I watch movies. So we thought we'd both give this one a go, to give it a thorough testing.
Find out how we got on, and see if this could be the right sort of thing to help you get trim for 2012.
I read the instructions carefully. Two things immediately stood out - don't fight it if you want to fall asleep and don't listen to the CD while driving or operating heavy machinery. The latter was just funny. The former was funny for an entirely different reason - any time I get comfortable and listen to something I fall asleep. It's keeping me awake that's the real challenge.
Next up was slotting the disc into my PC and listening to Andrew as he helped me to gain control over my weight. After Christmas, frankly anything to reduce my growing bum is a good thing.
The first thing that struck me was the tinkly bell music. Aaargh. I am so ambivalent about this kind of music. On the other hand it reminds me of my hippie days. His voice is very hypnotic and very smooth, like velvet and silk. Clearly the right person to be doing this sort of thing.
I can't say that I have seen any major changes yet but I only started on 1st of January and the CD requires at least three weeks to kick in. I can admit to having a massive thing for exercising right now - more so than usual. Whether this is due to the CD or me or both, I could not say. I can tell you that it does knock me out almost instantly and I don't sleep well at all with noise - I cannot go to sleep with talking or music. So that, to me, is a big sign that something is going on. If nothing else I am feel a lot more well rested than I used to.
My inability to get hold of a CD player held up the review, as Tamsin and I both needed to start at the same time for a proper comparison. We agreed on the 1st of January to kick things off.
I couldn't help but think of Friends. The one where Rachel loans Chandler the stop smoking hypnotherapy tape that her friend at work had raved about. "You don't need to smoke, you are a strong, confident woman" the tape told Chandler as he slept, leading to him to start using lip gloss like lipstick amongst other things.
What might a hypnotherapy tape get me doing? It was a little bit scary to be honest, that this might make me actually want to exercise when phyisical exertion goes against the very core of my being.
I think that wanting to lose weight is key here. Hypnotising someone works best when they're open to being hypnotised. I wasn't. At least that's the conclusion Tamsin and I came to as we compared notes while she sipped a herbal tea and I snacked on Betty Crocker's Buttercream Icing straight out of the tub.
Unlike Tamsin, I liked the music. You can judge for yourself as there's a sample to listen to on the website. And I loved Andrew's voice. Actually I was a little bit surprised as I was expecting an American voice for some reason.Like Tamsin, I think the recording has also helped with my sleeping too. I've felt more rested - something I hadn't realised until Tamsin also mentioned this.
As the Buttercream instance highlights, I really do need to change my mindset. I've enjoyed the experience with Andrew so far, and in fact I have decided to keep trying. With much further to go than Tamsin, it is only to be expected that it will take longer! To that end I've actually bought the MP3 version of the Weight Loss recording, so I can listen to it on my own player.
Come back to me a year from now and I'll either give the Andrew Johnson Weight Loss recording a 10 out of 10 or it will have dropped a few points. It will all depend on whether I've managed to change my habits, and lose weight, or not! For that reason alone I've knocked a few points off this product but overall I find little to criticise. At £4.99 for the MP3 version, it isn't a lot to fork out, and if nothing else the tape seems to be helping me sleep better. That alone is worth paying a fiver for!
Overall verdict: 8/10