I am half way through my first week on the new program and I am still feeling very positive about the changes to the program. Things are starting to settle in as I have only had to make minor changes to my normal eating.
Today I fixed my oatmeal breakfast for the first time since the plan changed. I forgot to add my frozen fruit that I have in the freezer but enjoyed my oatmeal with almonds and cinnamon. I keep forgetting to add my frozen fruit! I did remember yesterday and added dark sweet cherries to my oatmeal and it was delicious! Breakfast isn’t going to be a big deal to modify IF I can stop forgetting to add my frozen fruit to it!
My 5th day in and I had my first eating out challenge. I reviewed the menu the day before online which helped a great deal. I was invited to lunch at a local Greek Restaurant and chose chicken kabob with roasted vegetables. It was great and from what I can figure very Smart Points friendly too! Large chunks of roasted chicken with large chunks of green pepper, onions and tomatoes. Very tasty! I only ate half and took the rest home to have for another meal.
One of the “targeted” items on the SmartPoints plan is sugar and I battled with some hard candies earlier this week. I suspect those candies will most likely affect my weigh in results this first week of SmartPoints. To make it even more complicated my sugar cravings were tag teamed with the female monthly hormone cycle. We are so quick to dismiss the affect hormones have on our eating and cravings but they are directly related. One friend online said there is no way that hormones would affect her weight loss because she no longer has a monthly cycle. In humorous style, I said “Just because that ship has sailed it doesn’t mean the wind can’t flutter your sails!” Why there might not be typical physical signs of the cycle, the hormones do continue to cycle every month. Even post menopausal women continue to feel “bloated” “puffy” etc. long after that time has passed each month but don’t often connect that to their hormone cycle. I can safely say the monthly hormone cycle was most likely the basis of me keeping my hand in the candy jar for a couple of days this week. I am trying to avoid them the rest of this week! This time of year we are bombarded with sugared everything being pushed at us! But, I know how to say “no, thank you” and move on.
BEYOND THE SCALE- FITPOINTS
This past summer the Weight Watchers meetings were focused on being happy and how to be happy. Research has shown that happy people make better food choices which is one of the concepts behind the new name “Beyond the Scale.” There is more involved to losing weight than the number on the scale. Which brings me to FitPoints. We are no longer encouraged to exchange our FitPoints for food. Many have been very disappointed with this new approach as they have been used to exercising more to eat more. Weight Watchers is taking the stance that we should be exercising to feel better not just to eat more. I couldn’t agree more since it appears those with activity monitors can rack up FitPoints for almost nothing! I still enter my activity manually as I do not use an activity monitor and my points are about the same as they were before the program switch which doesn’t seem fair but since I am not using them, it really doesn’t matter in the big picture as I am one who has always held the belief that I am exercising to be healthy so I am not sure if it is even necessary for me to count them anymore. I hope Weight Watchers will come up with a good compromise such as for every ten FitPoints you earn, you will have one additional SmartPoints to use in your daily points total. Or something like that. I think it isn’t an even exchange with the increased points being earned by those with fitness monitors and maybe that kind of formula could work. Just my two cents.
Something you know something but yet you refuse to acknowledge it which I choose to call it conditional amnesia better known as denial. I KNOW Weight Watchers works BUT I keep second guessing myself and keep wondering how I am supposed to be able to lose with having more daily points. I KNOW to trust the program and not to panic but I keep having waves of second guessing myself and Weight Watchers on their approach. I still hear my two-year old toddler self trying to playing with my head.
My weekly Weight Watchers weigh in is on Saturday morning and I am hoping for a “down” no matter how small. My results will be in my summary/wrap up post I will post on Sunday or Monday.
I was in the advantageous position of being in the last group for the week (my weigh in is on Saturday) that converted to the new Beyond the Scale program with the newly named SmartPoints and FitPoints. That gave me an interesting perspective and lots of time to vent, explore and ask tons of questions to my Weight Watcher online friends.
I felt I was prepared before going to the introduction meeting, I knew what to expect, and had read about most of the changes and my fears had been transformed into excitement to begin the new program. I had realized that I wasn’t going to need to make major changes but more like a few “tweaks” to my eating plan to adapt to the new plan.
FACT AND FICTION
MY ADVICE: Study point values before going grocery shopping or going out to eat. Make a list of new things to add to your plan with fewer points. PLAN and stick to your PLAN = SUCCESS!
I felt successful on my first day on SmartPoints and I still feel very positive about the program and what I am understanding about it.
“The biggest change in 50 years” that is what the advertising says and while that is very exciting to those just beginning the Weight Watchers Lifestyle it spreads panic and mass hysteria among the already existing long-term members. The questions/reactions were “Why do I need to change? It has been working so far!” “I have been losing weight why do I need to change?” “I don’t like the new program!” (said before it even launched!) “I do not think this new program will work for me, I am going to keep doing the old program!” (said too before they have really lived the program even 7 days) “This new program isn’t going to work for me!” (also said before they had even tried the program) All of these reactions/statements were based on rumors mostly and very little fact.
The rumors that have been spreading online are scary and members reactions to the rumors are even worse than scary! To see adults who have been successful with the Weight Watchers Program become screaming toddlers who renounce every change possible has been both sad and amusing at the same time. I was the first one to scream like a banshee when the online e-tools and phone ap when awry in the migration from the old program to the new. I did not like the technology suddenly not working, I felt: hurt, betrayed, deserted, scared and left behind. I was very vocal to Weight Watchers via Facebook and online feedback forms about them “breaking” e-tools. I probably sounded like a two-year old who needed a nap but I needed the e-tools to work!
I had to put myself in check (aka an attitude adjustment) by returning back to the “basics and roots” I had learned years ago. I resorted to the “ancient” but effective method of tracking via pencil and paper. Good thing I had purchased two 3 month tracking journals! Nice though in hindsight that I can still track on paper and it works! In fact, that week I lost 2.6 pounds tracking on paper! A good reminder that you do not need technology to lose weight! We forget that sometimes, often, okay–a lot.
Listening to the rumors and other members posting on-line I am steeled for my regular Saturday morning meeting to be not the most positive environment and to hear lots of venting and protesting the new changes. We dislike, umm ok HATE would be the better description for the new meeting room chair arrangement but have reduced our banter down to joking every time we come in and see a new chair arrangement. We crack lots of jokes about Oprah having a huge studio and how that arrangement works better in a large area but our meeting center isn’t that large. We joke ok what is Oprah wanting us to do this week? I feel pretty sure that Oprah had nothing to do with our new seat arrangements but it makes for giggles at 8am on a Saturday morning when everyone there would have loved to have slept in but are choosing to be there instead. BRAVO for us, even though we do complain sometimes, ok a lot, but we do have fun and enjoyable meetings. We are a very interactive group, sometimes way too interactive for our own good. We like each other , have a good time and share our struggles and victories. That is what it is all about right, sharing and caring? We had the camaraderie/bonding part of Weight Watchers down pat a long time before they wanted us too— in my opinion.
I am excited about the new program though I know I am going to be forced to make a few tweaks to my eating plan I suspect. One “rumor” that I believe is based in fact is that my daily points allowance and my weekly points allowances will change. One will go up and one will go down most likely. Food point values will change. I have heard that about 50% of the food points stayed the same with the other 50% either going up or going down, some by a little and some by a lot. I need to shake my eating and exercise up and this is just the ticket to start a new year doing things a little differently.
I will try to keep track of all my thoughts/changes I feel myself going through each step of the way. I want to blog here each day about my challenges and the changes I encounter. I keep telling myself we all can use more change! (giggle)
This time last year I was finally barely able to squeeze into a size 12 pair of Levi’s and this year, I just purchased a new pair of Levi’s in a couple of sizes smaller which have a loose fit. This time last year I was finally under 200 lbs. and pressing on toward my next 5 lb goal. During the last year, December 1, 2013 to December 1, 2014 I have lost a total of 44.2 pounds, achieved my Weight Watchers Goal Weight, and earned Lifetime at Weight Watchers. I have been at goal since July 6th and working on maintaining/protecting my weight loss ever since.
I didn’t protect my loss as well has I had hoped on a recent cruise vacation (12 days in November), I came home with an additional six pounds (according to my home scale). It took me a couple of weeks to work and get those extra pounds gone. The positive side, I had planned and lost some “extra” pounds so that I could enjoy my vacation and not return over my goal weight. Success!
I can report at my first weigh in since returning from vacation I was already down 4.4 lbs. and just 1.6 lbs. up over my Lifetime Official Weigh in for November! And let’s have a big drum roll–still 5 pounds UNDER goal weight! Big celebration time! At my December 1st weigh in (my “official” December Weigh in), I was down another pound! I have a net loss of .4 (4/10 tenths of a pound) between November and December and 7 pounds under goal!
I made a decision to lose an additional eight pounds since I have been feeling good and feel I have too much additional fat on my midsection. After I lose the additional eight pounds, I will evaluate and determine if I need to lose anything additional. If I do not feel good or feel it is too hard to maintain the additional weight loss, I will try to slowly re-gain the weight. If I feel good and it isn’t too hard to maintain, I will drop my goal weight by five pounds. This is one of my goals for 2015. Many people have been telling me that I do not need to lose anything additional and how great I look but I think I still need to tweak my weight a little bit more. I am sure I weigh more than anyone thinks I weigh as I am built very solid. I had a doctor once tell me that I could easily “hide” 20 lbs. so I feel an additional 5-10 lbs. really won’t hurt my health or my physical appearance.
It certainly is a different mindset when on maintenance as contrasted the mindset you have when totally focused on trying to solely lose weight. I find my mind now on a constant teeter totter, of a stream of questions ranging from:
I think all of these questions are good, healthy and keep me focused. On my recent cruise vacation I did not track but for the most part thought about what I was eating even though I knew it wasn’t the best choice, it might have been one of the few choices. I did manage to get on average 8 activity points a day on my Active Link though! No elevators, I used the stairs and a morning mile walk and a mile walk after dinner too!
Since reaching my goal weight, I have been trying to give my skin extra moisture and tone up my muscles under the sagging/stretched out skin. I am starting to see some improvement in my skin and the tone of my muscles. It is my goal to maintain my weight loss for at least two years before I consider any type of surgery to deal with the excess skin. The look of my arms and legs bother me with the crinkly/wrinkly sagging skin so I keep the out of public view for the most part!
As I approach the coming New Year, I think, where do I want to be this time next year?
My 2015 Personal Goals
I have learned to set obtainable goals! No matter how small the goals are, the better and more easily you can feel successful!
Tomorrow is my birthday so I am happy to be able to say…Happy Birthday to me! (December 11th) And YES, I am planning on having a slice of cake to celebrate!