Before I begin today's post, I just want to say THANK YOU to everyone who has either posted a comment or e-mailed me regarding my progress with Weight Watchers. Losing weight is hard, as we all know, so to receive such support and encouragement is wonderful and I appreciate it more than you all know :-)
Now, with that said, lets talk about the subject of some of the other comments and e-mails I have been receiving lately. It seems that along with encouraging friends to buy household appliances they don't need, I have also been encouraging them to try Weight Watchers!! And I am so happy to hear that because I really can't say enough about this program and how it has helped me lose weight SEVERAL times.
But...it is a little intimidating to start a new diet that requires so much effort on your part. Slim Fast did it right because all they had to do was tell you to drink two shakes a day and you would lose weight (allegedly). But Weight Watchers is very different. There is a wonderful science behind the program and while it may seem overwhelming to learn about the points system at first, you will soon realize that it truly is the EASIEST diet to follow because you can technically eat whatever you want. Weight Watchers isn't so much about cutting calories as it is about watching portions. I had a HUGE wake up call the first time I tried WW because I had no idea that one serving of pasta was only a cup. A FREAKING CUP!! But now that I know that, it is easy to turn off that part of my brain that tells me a serving of pasta should be an entire plate :-) Ha!
I would say the other intimidating part about Weight Watchers is deciding what to make each day for Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner. It's not like Jenny Craig or NutriSystem where the meals are already planned and portioned for you. YOU have to be the one to make the meals and modify them to meet your needs. This is exactly why Weight Watchers has come out with a ton of cookbooks...to help inspire your cooking creativity :-) But if you are like me, you don't always have the energy or time to be trying new recipes OR making two separate meals each night to accommodate your diet and your family. And this, my friends, leads me to my first Q&A.
My friend Adrienne just signed up for Weight Watchers and she asked...
This is an excellent question, especially if you are cooking for a significant other or your entire family each night. I don't know about you, but I find it hard enough to make one meal each night, let alone two! So I actually make my usual dinners (casseroles, pastas, chicken dishes, etc.) and then just modify some of the ingredients. Sometimes I will modify the whole recipe so that Eric and Addie are eating healthier too, or I will just modify what I put on my plate. For example, if I am making spaghetti, I will make my traditional meat sauce for the fam, but reserve a little plain marinara for myself. That way, I can still have what they are having, minus about 5 points :-) I also told Adrienne that I do my best at eating lower point breakfasts and lunches so that I can have a bigger, better dinner.
Another question I have been asked many times is...
How do I know what to order at a restaurant or fast food joint?
I would be lying if I said that I never eat fast food. In truth, I probably eat out twice a week, whether it is stopping at McDonalds with the kids, or ordering a pizza on a Friday night. That's just how it goes sometimes. But luckily, Weight Watchers has made it SO simple to decide what to order at restaurants. They have taken all the guess work out of it by assigning points to all of the foods you typically order. You can find a list under the "Restaurants" tab on their website. The only problem is, WW is a little behind on some restaurants, so I recommend checking out another website called Dotti's Weight Loss Zone. She lists almost every restaurant you can imagine, along with all the foods from the menu and the WW points assigned to them. I love this website...it has been a really big help.
One thing I have learned from being on Weight Watchers a few times is that once you know the points for certain foods and snacks, you tend to gravitate towards them because you already know what they cost. But by doing this, you often burn yourself out on certain snacks. For example, I seriously can't look at another Fiber One bar or Weight Watchers Lemon Cake snack. I am completely over them. So it is key to try to switch things up and find new snack options so you don't get bored. And that leads me to my next question...
What are some of your favorite low-point snacks?
If I am going to spend 2 points on a snack, I really want that snack to be satisfying and filling. I have two major addictions...chocolate and cheese. I love them both and they are seriously the worst things to eat when you are dieting. But I can't give them up completely or I would fall off the wagon within a week. So, I have found two new snacks that satisfy these cravings really well and they are worth every point. First up...
Kashi Dark Chocolate Coconut Bars
These snack bars are freaking AMAZING!!! They are only 2 points, but they taste like you are cheating. The chocolate is rich and the nuts and coconuts give it a great flavor. These are my new addiction, which means I will probably be sick of them in a month. Haha! If you want to try these yourself, visit the Kashi website for a coupon.
Next up, a snack to satisfy my cheese craving.
A Laughing Cow Cheese Wedge and Special K Crackers
If you haven't tried Laughing Cow light Garlic and Herb cheese wedges, you are TOTALLY missing out. A whole wedge is only 1 point and if you pair it with some Special K Crackers, you've got yourself a delicious 2-3 point snack that won't leave you hungry. You can also add some apple slices or a cup of grapes and this make a pretty decent lunch!!
And finally, I think my friend Chelsi asked me the most important question of all...
How do you stay motivated when you love food like I do?
I honestly wish I had the perfect answer to this question but I don't. It is definitely hard to stay motivated with any diet, but if you love food like I do, Weight Watchers is the way to go because you don't have to deprive yourself of anything. If you want pizza...you can have it! If you want chocolate...you can have it! It all about moderation though.
I guess one thing that has always helped keep me motivated is setting a goal for myself. The first time I did WW, I wanted to lose weight for my wedding. The second time, I wanted to get into a bathing suit after having Addie. And this time, I want to be able to wear all of my old jeans and clothes again. I may never be able to part with my Spanx, but I am fine with that. As long as all my jeans zip :-) I also find that setting a realistic goal is key too. As much as I would love to rock my old pair of size 4 jeans, I know that is never going to happen. And even if I could lose enough weight to fit into them, I would never be able to maintain it. I fully believe that I am meant to be a size 8 (maybe a size 6 in some things) but that is perfectly fine with me. I mean, Catherine Zeta Jones is a size 8 and look at her!!! I guess it isn't really about size...its more about how you feel about yourself. So maybe make that your goal....to get down to a size that you feel comfortable in and can maintain without starving yourself or living at the gym :)
Well...I hope you all found these questions and answers helpful! And not that I am a Weight Watchers expert or anything, but I would be happy to answer any other questions you all might have. Feel free to ask away and I will do another follow-up post if enough people seem interested. Thanks again for all the great comments friends!! Happy Wednesday!!
Todays Weigh-In: 141.5
Total pounds lost: 12.5!!
Goal Weight: 140