- March 16th, 2012
Ok, so I haven't posted here in awhile, but some of you might know through other means that I recently rejoined weight watchers. It worked for me amazingly well in the past, only failing due to my own inability to stay on track without actually going to meetings anymore. Needless to say, I'm still not entirely able to manage my weight on my own without some form of structure guiding me along, so joining back up is a good thing.
Unfortunately, I'm running into much the same problem that I had the first time around. To describe the problem, I'll have to explain a bit about how Weight Watchers works:
Basically, there are two ways to do WW. One "plan" assigns you a set number of points based on your height, weight, age, and gender. These points are your "allowance" for the day. Every food has a points value based on it's nutritional values. Eat whatever you want, as long as it stays within your points budget, and you're golden. The weight will come off.
The other plan differs in that there are no points, but there is a set list of "approved" foods. Previously, this was called the "Core" plan. Now they call it "Simply Filling". Whatever the name, the idea is basically the same. You can eat whatever you want from the approved food list (usually whole/minimally processed foods) in whatever quantity you want, as long as you only eat enough to satisfy your hunger. Therein lies the tricky part for some of us fatties - we don't always listen to our bodies when they tell us to stop eating. But, the Core/Simply filling plan is good like that - it re-trains you to listen to those cues, while not feeling fenced in by the points budget.
Common to both plans is the weekly bonus points. Everyone, regardless of what their personal points budget may be, gets 49 weekly bonus points to spend however they please. This is cool for a lot of reasons, most of them so obvious that I probably don't even need to mention them. Suffice to say, they can be super helpful - and if you don't want or need them, you don't have to use them.
Now, on to my dilemma.
Since I'm a guy and a fat-fat-fattyfat, I get a grand total of 71 points a day. For those of you who don't know, that is is a shit-ton of points. When I was doing weight watchers in the past, I had about the same amount. At first, I was overjoyed - I get to eat all kinds of foods! Hooray, right? It turns out, not so much. Yes, I can eat virtually anything I want, but the problem became that I was eating everything I wanted, then having to find stuff like oreos, and ice cream and all the shit that I mindlessly eat anyway in order to fill the extra points that I had left after a day of decent, responsible eating. I was still losing weight, but my whole day was spent feeding myself, and my food budget was fucking insane. Sounds pretty bananas (mmm, bananas) for a weight-loss program, but that's how things were turning out.
So, I switched to the Core program. My food budget instantly dropped, and I didn't have to eat my way through the day like I was before. The problem with that was that once I figured out exactly what I liked to eat and fit into the Core plan, that's all I ate. I'm not even kidding when I say that for about six months straight, my dinner was a baked potato with fat-free sour cream & cheese, all the butter spray I cared to spray, two lean pork chops, and some broccoli. As awesome as that meal was, having it every. single. fuckin. day. starts to make one crazy.
Anyway - long story short, the same pattern is reasserting itself with this go-around. I've been using the "Simply Filling" plan so far, but am already in a rut. Plus, I use up my weekly bonus points on little extras for the meals I make, so there's little left over for things like snacks and whatnot to help keep the monotony at bay. However, trying to plan a meal plan that uses all of my 71 daily points, and stays within my weekly food budget is proving to be nigh impossible. Aargh.
So yeah. There's some first-world problems for ya.