You know you have been slacking on your Weight Watchers meeting when they send you the “guilt trip” postcard. I got one in the mail on Wednesday from the women who man the scales, saying they missed me. Good thing I was already planning on going the next evening!
And… I removed three pounds!
I think this is half due to me staying on plan, and half due to me being so busy and stressed lately that I often forget to eat.
Though, I must say pre-Weight Watchers, when I was stressed I would eat everything in sight. At work, I would go down to the gift shop in the building’s lobby and get a Kit Kat, a small bag of Doritos or Cheetos, maybe some gummi bears and wash it down with a Diet Dr. Pepper. Or I would treat myself to a venti java chip Frappucinno from Starbucks. After a crazy week, I would self-medicate with half (sometimes a whole) box of pasta with butter, cheese, salt and pepper and pair it with a giant glass of red wine.
Now, while I still love pasta I really can’t eat more than one bowl. The idea makes me nauseous. Saturday night my husband and I decided to celebrate getting through the drama of the week – we made ourselves Jack & gingers and ordered subs from the local deli. Before, I would have eaten a 12” with fries, now I order the 6” and eat sans sides. And feel sated. Not full, not hungry, just right.
So I have been stressed, and overwhelmed, but I have been able to stay relatively on Plan. And this week’s meeting topic really fit with why I have been able to stay on track.
We discussed what we have in our kitchens. First we went around the room, each of us mentioning one item that’s in our house that we shouldn’t have. Some said chips, others said ice cream, one guy said Froot Loops and I admitted I have half a bag of candy corn. We discussed the difference between having anything you want because essentially everything is on the Weight Watchers plan, versus trigger foods. I may have candy corn and grab a small handful every so often, but it’s not a trigger food for me as say, chips can be. Give me a bag of Lays and a tub of sour cream and both are gone within an hour even if I am not hungry. Something I learned with Weight Watchers is to keep trigger foods from my house, even if I have to get stern with my husband.
We also discussed go-to items we always have in our kitchen to stay on the plan. We each went around the room, saying what part of the kitchen we are in (pantry, fridge, freezer, etc.) and what our three food items were. For me, it was the freezer and I always have steam-in-bag broccoli florets, Skinny Cow ice cream sandwiches, and frozen blueberries. The broccoli is a fave because it’s a food both Emerson and I enjoy. I can steam up a bag, give her some for her dinner, stick some in Tupperware for the next day’s lunch, and the rest I throw in a skillet with some crushed red pepper, spray olive oil (love our Misto), and garlic for a delicious post-work/pre-dinner snack. Skinny Cow ice cream sandwiches are utterly delish, taste like real ice cream and curb sugar cravings. And frozen blueberries – I will add to a smoothie, defrost completely and put in my morning oatmeal or eat alone, or eat half frozen for a treat that is like little pods of sorbet.
I have realized a great key to my success is having the food I need always available so I won’t stray and eat crap. I always have oatmeal for breakfast, and my husband knows to shake the tub before heading to the grocery to see if we need to replenish our stock. The refrigerator at work is stocked with Lean Cuisine and Weight Watchers meals with my initials on them so I don’t even have to plan each morning on what to take for lunch. In my desk at work I have snacks like 100 calorie almond packs and Weight Watchers snack bars. And at home, I have plenty of fruit and vegetable snacks like canned pineapple, Gala apples, steam-in-bag frozen produce, celery and Laughing Cow cheese.
When weightloss gets too complicated, it’s easy to give up. Who has time for constantly counting points or preparing special foods? But planning in advance makes it easy. If the food I need is available and things I already know the PointsPlus value for, there’s no excuse. I can coast until 6pm without worrying about PointsPlus value thanks to my routine breakfasts, snacks, and lunches. Dinners we are starting to plan in advance by making a list throughout the week and shopping on Sundays. It is becoming a rhythm, it is less something I think about, more a lifestyle. I can see on a daily basis how Weight Watchers has really changed how I think about food.
This hasn’t been a quick weightloss, but it feels permanent. And when I think of where I was a year or so ago in mindset, and how I think now… it is a huge change and accomplishment. Slow and steady wins the race!