In writing the post on when I got to goal weight on Weight Watchers, it reminded of all the things that I did right back then. And, it caused me to really ponder what things help me in losing weight. That is, what I do when I’m losing weight.
Go to Weight Watchers meetings – This is a very clear association for me. I have off and on been on Weight Watchers for many years. Even after I regained weight, I would occasionally go back for a time. The bottom line is that when I consistently attended meetings I always lost weight. I realize that it isn’t necessarily the meetings themselves that cause me to lose weight. It is more that if I gain weight I don’t like to go to meetings and when I stop going to meetings I stop eating right and gain weight. But, when I can stand to go to the meetings even if I’ve gained weight I can manage to keep eating right and so I don’t perpetuate the gain week after week. It isn’t so much that I ever learn anything new at meetings. But, going to meetings keeps my head in the game and my focus on weight loss. Also, if I know that I have to weigh in the next week I’m far more likely track what I eat and end up with a loss. When I finally got to goal at Weight Watchers I really made going to meetings a priority. I would even find a meeting if I went out of town.
Exercise Videos – This is sort of funny. I had totally forgotten that I got to goal at Weight Watchers, by regularly doing exercise videos. This had worked well for me. I didn’t have to leave to house to exercise (going to gym is a good idea, but I always would let it slide). I didn’t have to buy a lot of equipment, and I could switch videos as I was able to do more. Also, I had a bunch of different videos so I didn’t get bored.
It is funny, but after I got married I just sort of quit doing exercise videos and it never really occurred to me to get back to them. I am sort of amazed, frankly, that it didn’t. Now that I’ve gotten this idea back in my head, I am enjoying doing some videos again when I want to fit in some easy exercise.
Eating a Healthier Diet is Better for My Weight Loss – Back when I first got to lifetime on Weight Watchers, it was an exchange program. You had to eat so many proteins a day and so many breads and so many fruits and vegetables. You had a couple of exchanges that you could use as you wanted (I always used them on extra bread exchanges) and you got a certain number of optional calories that you could use for extra exchanges (each type of exchange was given a calorie value) or you could use for non-exchange food such as cookies, candy, and so on. The thing was that the optional calories were very limited (much more limited than today’s weekly points – I think it was about 700 optional calories a week or something like that). Anyway, because of how it was set up I used the vast majority of my calories on food that was relatively good for me and very little of it on, well, junk food. That was because most junk food used lots of optional calories.
For the first time as an adult, I really ate a semi-decent healthy diet when I was on Weight Watchers the first time. And, I remember that I felt good and I ate much less junk food. Later on, when I went back to Weight Watchers and it was using points instead of exchanges I tended to eat too much junk food. I would stay within my points, but it wasn’t a very high quality diet. And, with still eating too much junk food, I would then tend to overeat and go beyond my points.
I don’t really want to go back to exchanges. It was hard enough calculating them back then and I have no desire to try to figure it out now. But, I do think that healthier eating and trying to avoid junk food is better for me and makes it easier for me to stay within my points plus. I am just doing it differently now. Mostly, I am avoiding refined grains, added sugars and junk foods that provide no nutritional benefit.
Don’t Bring Certain Foods into the House – Back when I got to goal, I didn’t bring a lot of junk foods into the house because my opportunities to eat them were so limited. With Points Plus, I’ve tended to bring more of those foods in the house since I could “afford” them if I restricted portion size. The problem is that for some of those foods, I have difficulty restricting portion size or I eat too many of them. One thing I’ve been doing the past few months is just not bringing those foods into the house (unless in a single serving package). This has made things so much easier. When I go for a snack, I literally don’t have much junk food in the house. Most of the snacks I can eat are actually things that have some health benefits. And, I tend to not get out of control on these foods.
What things work for you to help with weight loss?