My second week of using SmartPoints on Weight Watchers new program is in the book. I have pre-tracked eating a serving of pistachios and then I am done for the day. I reported last week on Week 1, and I wanted to post again at the end of this week to give some feedback now that I’ve had some practice with the new program. I compared what my foods would total under PointsPlus versus under SmartPoints. I noticed that I ate slightly more calories per day this week, but I ended the week with 14 SmartPoints left, while the first week I had 8 SmartPoints left.
I’ve been dual tracking my points on both programs in my spreadsheet partly due to website/app woes and partly because I am not yet officially on SmartPoints until tomorrow (I’ve been using the handheld calculator to calculate points or moving my computer date forward).
In the chart, I show several things:
In order, for each day, the columns are: Date, PointsPlus eaten on that day, weekly PointsPlus eaten that day, total PointsPlus eaten that day, SmartPoints eaten on that day, weekly SmartPoints eaten that day, and total SmartPoints eaten that day, and the difference between the number of total SmartPoints and PointsPlus eaten.
For the week as a whole, I had 21 weekly PointsPlus left which would be 14 SmartPoints left. I got 26 daily, 49 weekly on PointsPlus v. 30 daily, 28 weekly on SmartPoints. Basically, I get 7 total points more a week on SmartPoints.
On one day (12/5), I ate 1 more point on PointsPlus than on SmartPoints. On 12/7, it totaled out the same on both programs. On the other days, SmartPoints totaled up to 1 or 2 more than PointsPlus. I ate a net of 7 more SmartPoints than I ate PointsPlus so it was totally in balance with my getting 7 more points for the week. I ate an average of 30 PointsPlus a day, which works out to an average of 31 SmartPoints.
Note that on 3 of the 7 days, I did not meet my 30 SmartPoints minimum! On each of those days, though, I would have eaten my 26 PointsPlus minimum. I think I ate pretty healthy on two of those days with not a lot of junk food I don’t feel that bad about. But, I would like to meet the 30 SmartPoints minimum when I can. I think that Weight Watchers probably assumes a higher intake of sugar than I usually have. With that, it would be easier to get to 30. For me, it can be a bit of struggle to get to 30.
Somewhat unusually, I ate out 5 times this week. This is not typical. It is usually more like 2 or 3. But, I was out and about a lot this week and ended up eating out a bit more often.
Comments on the days:
Saturday, 12/5 – We had lunch at The Counter, which is a great restaurant to eat a high protein meal if you get your burger in a bowl and not on bread. I had a chicken in the bowl, with a side of turkey chili. We sometimes share a side of sweet potato fries, but we decided they just weren’t worth the points. For dinner, I made tuna salad, which I ate by itself with no bread. Main snacks were some pistachios and a Vitatop (now 4 points instead of 3). The 70 calories of tuna actually calculated to 0 SmartPoints which made no sense to me. I tried calculating the tuna salad as a recipe and it was still basically 0. This was due to the high protein. I would think WW at some point would create 1 as a minimum when you have that much calories even with high protein. The day before I had something with 65 calories tuna and a little less protein and that totaled 1 SmartPoint. Due to the high protein, this day it ended up being 27 SmartPoints (below my minimum) while it was 28 PointsPlus (above my minimum).
Sunday, 12/6 – After attending the Sunday meeting to see the roll out of Beyond the Scale, we had lunch at Panera Bread. My half BBQ Chicken Salad and cup of turkey chili were each one point more, but the chips stayed the same. The food for day totaled to 2 SmartPoints more than it would be under PointsPlus.
Monday, 12/7 – I ate at home this day and ended up with only 27 SmartPoints, which was the same as it would have been under PointsPlus. The full fat cheese I ate was one point more as were the almonds But, the chicken and tuna were less.
Tuesday, 12/8 – I weighed in at home (no clothes, so less than I would weigh at meeting) at 144.8 pounds which was my low weight since getting back to goal on Weight Watchers! I ate out for lunch. I had 2 appointments that were close together, but I didn’t have control over the timing. The result is that I had to eat in a very small window. I chose to go to Taco Bell which I know is junk, but I found it preferable to McDonalds which was my other choice. My bean burrito was 1 point more, while my soft chicken taco stayed the same. At dinner, my chicken was one point less, but my full fat cheese was one more. I indulged a bit in the evening with 88 calories worth of dark chocolate (4 SmartPoints v. 3 PointsPlus). My food totaled 2 points more for the day on SmartPoints.
Wednesday, 12/9 – I had a totally unplanned snack due to poor planning on my part. On Wednesdays, I go to personal training in the early afternoon. I usually eat breakfast, but am not yet ready for lunch before going to training. I’ve found that if I go to training without eating anything, I can get that shaky, low blood sugar feeling. So, I usually eat a snack before hand, then train, come home and eat a meal. Well, this Wednesday, I had my snack (Kay’s Natural Cinnamon Toast Pretzel Sticks), but was really hungry after the personal training session. Normally, that would not be a big deal because I go straight home. But, that day I had another appointment to get to and wouldn’t be home for about 3 hours. I was ravenous, but didn’t have time to buy a meal. The result was that I bought a bag of potato chips from the vending machine. That was not a very good choice. Because that ended up being my “lunch”, I ended the day at 29 SmartPoints (28 PointsPlus). While I don’t feel that bad about the other days I didn’t get to my minimum, this one was really not good.
Thursday, 12/10 – I had lunch at a Mexican food restaurant. This was a meal that I wouldn’t usually have during the week, but I was in a situation where it was eat out or don’t eat. Mexican food can be challenging, even with PointsPlus, so I had to really think about it to make the meal at all reasonable. I ended up eating 2 shrimp tacos (very small soft whole wheat tortillas), along with a couple of bites of charro beans and a small serving of grilled vegetables. I did not eat any cheese, sour cream or guacamole. But, I intentionally ate 14 tortilla chips (yes, I counted them). The meal was one more point on SmartPoints than PointsPlus. I ate carefully the rest of the day and ended up eat 35 SmartPoints (34 PointsPlus). This was the high point day of the week.
Friday, 12/11 – Another example of poor planning. I once again failed to anticipate that I was going to be on the go during normal mealtime and I would be ravenous if I skipped eating. I had limited choices, but was able to buy a wrap. It was low saturated fat and sugar, but it used refined grains which I usually avoid. The wrap was 8 SmartPoints (not worth it!) versus 6 PointsPlus. For dinner I had fish and some veggies so it worked out OK for the day. I have planned out to eat 5 SmartPoints (5 PointsPlus) of pistachios in a little while. If so, I will end the day with 32 SmartPoints (30 PointsPlus). However, I still have 14 SmartPoints left, so if I decide I want to eat a little more tonight, I certainly have the points available to eat more.
I did better this week in recognizing what would be higher points. The result was that I had more SmartPoints left this week than last, even though I ate more (I tracked on MyFitnessPal also). I did have plenty of snacks such as: Kay’s Natural Protein Snacks, dark chocolate (small portion), Vitatop, and pistachios.
Except when I got caught away from home without food (due to my poor planning), I was not at all hungry. This is why I struggled a bit on some days to get to the 30 SmartPoints minimum. No, I didn’t feel deprived. I actually ate everything I really wanted to eat. I mostly adjusted portion sizes. In some cases, I took SmartsPoint value into account in deciding what to eat. That was fine. I used to take PointsPlus value into account also.
I still like this plan better than PointsPlus. To a large degree, how you feel about this new Weight Watchers plan versus PointsPlus is a matter of preference. SmartPoints align particularly well with how I like to eat: low sugar, low saturated fat, and higher protein. So, it hasn’t been that difficult for me to adjust since I’m not really changing the kind of foods that I eat.
What has been more difficult is learning how to adjust to the larger amount of daily points. If my SmartPoints eaten a day ended up being 4 points more than the same foods would be in PointsPlus, then I wouldn’t have a problem. But my SmartPoints are usually not more than a couple of points more a day than the same food would be on PointsPlus. So, it is entirely possible for me to end a day without getting to my minimum. This is an adjustment that I need to work on next week.
Another goal of mine is to eat more fruits and veggies. With trying to adjust to SmartPoints, I haven’t made fruit and veggies (I eat more veggies than fruit) a priority. I need to work better on meal planning so that I get it paced out so to eat enough fruits (mostly berries) and veggies over the course of the day.
Edit: End up eating a little more this evening. Week ended with 19 PointsPlus, 11 SmartPoints left.
How has everyone else been doing this week?