Tag Archives: Weight Watchers

July is here already!

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It’s the Fourth of July! Celebrations are going on in the U.S. but
where I live (in a tropical paradise), nothing seems to be going
on in quite the same scale as the celebrations of years past.

I feel a bit odd that one entire month (June) went by and I didn’t
post a single entry. It is not that I don’t write every single day,
because I do, it just hasn’t been the kind of writing that I feel
comfortable sharing. Not sure what that’s about.

My husband was away for almost the entire month of June. He
returned quite exhausted and seems to have caught a bug, maybe
on the airplane? I feel bad for him but in a way, perhaps it is best
to let him rest while I catch up on some of the writing that I have
put on the side so I could devote myself to doing the chores that
keep our household running and that he is usually responsible for.
A few more days won’t make any difference, the poor guy has a lot
of things on his mind.

So July! I have continued to have slow progress with my Weight
Watchers plan and I am confident that by the end of this year, I
will have lost most of the weight I have set myself a goal for. It
would be wonderful to begin 2019 (which feels like it is just around
the corner!) in some new clothes…

I have done some serious decluttering in June. I actually got rid of
a good amount of clothing and knickknacks that were not bringing
me any joy. It is amazing how light one feels after disposing of items
that no longer fit one’s life. I finally accepted that I was keeping things
for the wrong reasons. For example, a friend of mine gave my daughter
and me earrings that were crafted by her then-boyfriend, a man I know
and whose behavior has impressed me, but not in a good way. I never
wore the earrings because they were too long for my short neck and my
daughter never wore hers because they were not in a style she liked. But
I felt I needed to keep them because my friend might be hurt if I found
another home for them.

A few months after the earrings were given to us, my friend’s relationship
ended. The artist boyfriend began a new relationship and a year later, that
one also ended. Every morning, I saw the earrings. I moved them from one
side of the dresser to another.  I began to question why I still had them.
One serendipitous night as I was watching Youtube, I ended up catching a
video on Marie Kondo, the decluttering consultant…she has a very unique
way of approaching decluttering. You have to gather all the items you own
wherever you are working. You hold each item in your hand until they either
spark “joy” or not. If they still give you joy, that is your permission to keep
them; otherwise, it is best to find a new home for them.

I held each pair in my hands. Waited for the “joy” that never came. I made
two beautiful packages for these lovely items and then placed them with
other “treasures” I was giving away to the local Animal Shelter for their
fundraising campaign. It felt so good to send the earrings to a place that
I know will find someone they can bring joy to.

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Cauliflower pizza, anyone?

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A lovely head!

I did a terrible thing today: in anticipation of tomorrow being garbage
day, I decided to clean out my refrigerator! No, that’s not the terrible
thing I did! The terrible thing I did was to throw out almost an entire
week’s worth of vegetables that my husband and I purchased at the
farmers market just last week.

I don’t know what comes over the two of us when we visit the place. It’s
like all those colorful vegetables are shouting to us that they want to come
home…and that they will be cooked…only to end up in the compost bucket
time after time.

In the last few months, since I’ve been watching what I eat, I have become
a bit more interested in trying out new recipes. Don’t get me wrong, I used
to love cooking, especially when my children were young and I was a full-
time (and happy) stay-at-home, home-school Mom. But then the kids grew
up and moved away and now it’s hubby and me and we spend a lot of time at
home (semi-retired) and I have embraced this “new life”.

My husband enjoys cooking and so for the last few years, he’s been more or
less responsible for the meals we have for dinner. Of course, he also enjoys
eating and snacking and has a penchant for things like pepperoni, potato chips,
chocolate…thus, we have both gained a fair amount of weight in those same few
years.  I know no one was forcing me to have the extra calories; I am human too
and although I don’t indulge in pepperoni or chips (no sacrifice really, it’s not my
thing!), almonds, chocolate and cake are definitely on my list of favorites.

Since I joined Weight Watchers in December, though, I have definitely been off
most of those goodies. Not that WW “forbids” anything, I just feel that if I am
dieting, it should feel a like a diet. I am one of those people who feels a need to
have “rules” that I will feel disappointed about breaking. I know, I know, but
there you have it.

Last week when we were at the farmers market, there was an enormous cauli-
flower for sale. It was sold by unit and my husband found a much smaller one
that he preferred but he deferred to me since I had visions of making a pizza
with a cauliflower crust. I don’t know what possessed me to think I was going
to actually tackle that project; to begin with, it involved getting out and dusting
the food processor and making cauliflower rice! It never happened and today
when I found myself tossing the entire head, I was overcome with pangs of guilt.
If we had purchased the smaller head, it would have been a nice side dish for one
of our few dinners at home this week. I told my husband that from now on he
must not humor me when I lose my head momentarily like that!

 

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A slow journey, the weight loss route!

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April has indeed been a very busy month for me. When I began my weight loss
journey in December it was motivated by my disbelief at how much weight I had
gained in the last few years. All my “reasons” for the weight gain were understood
by me, both emotionally and intellectually. When I saw a picture of myself (that I
immediately deleted), I was spurred into action mode.

It is now almost 5 months later. I have managed to lose almost 19 lbs. and wish
it was so much more but I am feeling much better these days that the speed at
which I am losing (slowly) will allow me to “fit” into the idea that going quickly
is not in my reality or future. I cannot say that I have not been hungry on this
program (Weight Watchers) but I also cannot say that I have deprived myself
of healthy or tasty food in the last few months.

I track my food for accountability (personal since I am strictly on the program
“on line”), weigh myself every day (it works for me) and have good support from
those around me. I use the tools available to me, especially the ones that allow
me to see other people’s progress and read their comments.

A new weight watchers enrollee asked others to share their motivations and the
ways in which they get or stay inspired. I began to think about that; I usually
don’t give it much thought, I just do what I do because I know it will get results.
But when I looked deep into my soul, I realized that I am motivated by the most
superficial of reasons: I don’t like what I see when I see myself in pictures!

It’s that simple and that superficial and for now, it is the best incentive I have. I
realized last week that the almost 19 lb. loss has allowed me to consider trying on
clothing that had been relegated to the back of my closet. I am a clotheshorse and
although I have gotten rid of impossible-to-get-back-into-sizes, I have kept those
that are reasonably within my reach. Much to my great surprise and joy, I was able
to fit into a lovely blouse and slacks (size 14…) that I wore to an event last week. My
friend and I took a picture and I did not balk when I saw it; I am beginning to see
the self I recall…it is also worth mentioning that even though I usually drive every-
where I was forced to take a bus last week and I fit into the seat without any discomfort.
All of these non-scale victories are doing wonders for motivation and my self-esteem.

I am eager to continue my slow and steady progress. Just like the turtle, I too will
get to the finish line!

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Changing the Setting!

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I’m the kind of gal who can sometimes drown in a glass of water! I can be
so hands on in certain situations and then a really nonsensical thing can
completely throw me off!

Take my weigh-in day with Weight Watchers. When I started the program
it was established that my day for this activity was Mondays! As with all
kinds of “new” projects, the beginning was just fine, energy was wonderful,
I was delighted with the food plan, the variety, the recipes, etc. So Mondays
were just fine for the weigh-in (I do the program on-line BTW). Fast forward
a couple of months, now you’re used to the program, it starts to get a little
stale, the daily menus are not being planned with as much precision and the
tracking is not as strict so the losses each week are really, really low. This is
also the result of eating a little more on the weekend, using up those extra
points, etc. I began to feel miserable on Sunday evenings, eliminating the
one chocolate truffle I was splurging on because I feared gaining an ounce
or not losing at all…instead of doing something about it, I chose to deny my-
self and that is never a good feeling.

Last night, it occurred to me that I have complete control of how I work my
program. I signed on and found the “settings” button. I changed my weigh-in
day from Monday to Saturday so that I can be “good” during the week and
have a few treats on the weekend, after all, isn’t that what the weekend is for?
Fun, treats and enjoyment. I still weigh myself each morning, it’s what works
for me and today I actually had a lovely surprise but I do have a plan for this
week (a food plan that is) and I know that on Saturday morning, the surprise
will be even nicer! No need to drown in this glass of water!

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Welcome Monday

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Yup! It’s Monday, laundry day and YAY, I’m all done. Now I am sitting at my desk
and trying to dash off a few sentences to this blog before I need to get dinner started.

Unbelievably, I actually lost another pound! I say unbelievably because though I
have not been “bad” (as they used to say in WW), I did consume chocolate cake,
cognac and popcorn last week. I tracked everything and tried to stay within reason
by not using all my points but I expected to find that my weight had stayed the same.
To my great delight, the scale registered a tiny loss. It’s not really a tiny loss for me,
one lb. after the week I had is actually very, very good. So I started the week off in a
good manner, feeling positive about the discipline and motivated to make this week
even better. My husband is doing his best to support me and I can see that he is also
considering moderating his own eating habits for the good of his health. I wish I could
do something to help him but everyone must work their program their own way.

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Losing weight, losing sight

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It’s been a very busy week, still lots of documentation to gather before my father can
claim some of his benefits after my mom’s passing. It has been a lesson to me about
having everything set up and in an orderly fashion so that our beneficiaries do not have
to go through so much red tape when we go.

My mother was an incredible human being with lots and lots of faults but with qualities
so excellent that the negatives pale in comparison. I am proud of the parents I was born
to and I hope that she knew how much I loved and admired her. I faulted her for not
saying “I love you” to me very often (if ever), I now think that I am guilty of the same
thing with her.

The first time I joined Weight Watchers, I was 15 years old. I did it at my mother’s prodding
because I was about 20 lbs. overweight at the time and she was fat also and decided that we
should do it together. That was in 1970! WW was just a few years old at that point and I do
remember that our “leader” was male. That has always stayed with me. I lost my 20 lbs. and
became a lifetime member which meant that I could attend meetings for free for the rest of
my life unless I went over the 2 lb. limit in my goal weight. Then you had to pay for attending.
I don’t remember why I stopped going but within 6 months, I had gained the weight back and
then some. It was not the first time I was on a “diet”, mom was always so concerned with my
weight, she was constantly looking for ways for me to lose it. I don’t remember every being
held back by my excess pounds. I was not athletic but that had nothing to do with my weight.
I was very sociable and rarely looked in the mirror except for my face and hair so I really had
no idea what my body looked like. I also made my own clothing so that it was not important
to me whether there were clothes to fit me in the store.

Back in those days, Weight Watchers terminology was less politically correct than today. For
example, if one ate a “forbidden” food (and there were many) one was “cheating”…or “bad”.
Today’s plans allow for eating whatever you like using a point system to keep track of things.
No food is bad or forbidden and no one is cheating. You simply track your points and move
on. Each day is a new beginning and that is how I have come to look at it this final time. In
the last 3 1/2 months, I have only lost 13 lbs. (slow metabolism as a result of years of dieting)
but rather than despair, I simply remind myself that this is a lifestyle change, not simply a
few weeks sacrificing to get down to a specific weight. At least the numbers are going in the
right direction.

There are so many choices and “hacks” available to us these days. I feel frustrated sometimes
because I allowed the weight to creep back on my small frame after so many years of maintaining
a healthy and comfortable weight. But I will be there again and hopefully some of my beautiful
clothes will still be in good enough condition to wear them.

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A good week of eating!

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It’s been about 2 weeks since I started on the Weight Watchers Freedom Plan. I
have to say I am having a great time. I know that my goal to lose the weight has to
go slowly or I won’t be successful and there is no reason to rush it really, I have no
weddings, showers, birthdays etc that I want to look good for. Heck, earlier this year
when I did have important events, I didn’t even give it a second thought (dieting!) but
something happened the last time I looked at a picture of me that I just couldn’t recon-
cile with! It’s wonderful to have photographers who are not looking to take a picture of
one with the “best angle” in mind. The picture was so unflattering (and yet accurate) that
I deleted it from the cloud and everywhere I could but it was the defining moment for me.

So far, I have lost probably 3 or 4 lbs. but since I have a scale that is in kilos rather than
pounds, it is difficult to determine to any exact figure. However, the proof is in the fact
that my clothes fit a tiny bit looser, after all, at my height, even 3 lbs. is quite significant.

I met a few writer friends for a small and lovely holiday celebration and I am happy to
say that despite eating (tiny portions) a variety of holiday foods, including marzipan
stollen, I was able to stay on track. It feels great to be back in control and I am confident
I can maintain the rhythm. My goal for 2018 is to be in good physical shape so that I can
go on television and see pictures of myself without asking “Who is that?”

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Monday Morning Musings!

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Mondays are busy days for me. I do the laundry, I wash my very curly hair,
I have meetings in the afternoon, and today, I actually made an appointment
to have my teeth cleaned! Really? On a Monday? Well, I wasn’t thinking when
I made the appointment but it’s actually a good thing because it will motivate
me to putting a little more energy and less procrastinating into my morning.

I joined Weight Watchers last night so that I could start my week in a good way.
It is not my first time with WW but I am happy to say it is not my 10th either!
I believe I have accepted that I can’t/won’t go it alone. I need the accountability
and discipline that tracking food offers. It’s tough to accept that but going along
with that “mind game” of pretending to be invited to the Royal wedding in May
will have to be my incentive. I need to lose about 50 lbs. really but I am starting
with 30! 43 years ago I lost 35 lbs. in 4 months…probably won’t happen that
fast this time, but I am confident that I can do it.

My husband is away. We have talked about my desire to eat less (we eat pretty
healthily but overeat and snack heavily at night). He does not think it is necessary
but he is not the one who is out of breath from a short walk or have achy joints
every morning (well, maybe he is but he’s not sharing!).

I feel good, eager to see some creative recipes and learn the new “program”.

I hope for a good week. So far, I have eaten one banana (0 points), one cup of
black coffee (no sacrifice since I’ve been drinking my coffee black since 40 years
ago) and I have hard boiled half a dozen eggs to snack on as needed. On my
own, I can be and do enjoy being disciplined about food without being extreme.
The challenge will be when hubby comes back because he is such a great cook!

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Weight Watchers…and diets…and Oprah

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I read today that Oprah has purchased 10% of Weight Watchers stock and I am very
happy for her. I believe in Weight Watchers but I also believe that ANY and ALL
diets will work (temporarily) to help us lose weight. Keeping it off, well, that
is an entirely different matter.

It seems to me that these days a lot of attention is being focused on the epidemic proportions
of obesity in the world. I was a chubby kid, an overweight teenager, a normal weight young adult
and adult until about 15 years ago. My weight has gone up 2 to 3 lbs. per year for the last 15
years, causing me to now be significantly overweight although NOT morbidly obese. I have tried
and succeeded and failed at taking the weight off for the past 15 years because I have honestly
not been trying very hard. I know as well as anyone who has ever really ‘studied’ dieting that
the only true formula is to eat less calories than one burns up and I KNOW that those calories
can actually be fats or protein or carbs…it’s input and output … but of course, we all
know that the mind will believe what it wants and every gimmick or shortcut out there will
induce some of us to part with our hard earned dollars by joining a program or gym and then being gung- ho
a few days or weeks or even months and then something triggers a binge and off we go.

Last January (2015) I decided to do away with any fancy dieting…just deciding to try to
lose 10% of my weight by September, the month I would mark my 60th birthday. I didn’t really
follow a plan, I just tried to eat smarter. 10% was not an impossible goal, it would have been
16 lbs. I did nothing for the first three months. Then in April I followed the Whole-30
not to lose weight but because for many months everything I ate was giving me heartburn. I
experienced no heartburn in the 30 days I followed the program and I even lost 10 lbs. Then
life got in the way, I had a lot of stress and for some reason going off the Whole 30 put
me right back in the mindless eating (mostly at night) which allowed me to regain the weight.
The only difference is that when I reached the beginning weight, I decided that I would
gain no more. I am today the exact same weight I was last January. While I am not thrilled
with that number, I am happy that it is no larger than the previous year for the first time in
a long time.

Oprah has shared her many failures and successes in this area. I remember attending a NOW
conference in 1988 or thereabouts (I was at my normal weight, a weight I had for 25 years)
where she had done Opti Fast or something and she looked fabulous. She spoke to us hundreds
of women from her heart (This I know) when she promised “I will never be fat again!”

I remember thinking OMG, how does she know? How can she say this with such certainty? Well, she didn’t know, did she? Anyway, I know in
my heart that weight problems (overweight ones) often have nothing to do with lack of discipline,
being a food addict, not having a chef who can prepare these foods for us but everything to do
with really thinking about what we are doing, and having a support system that encourages us and does not judge us when we eat beyond our calorie range…

I think I should write a book about it…and maybe I will.

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My Weight Watchers Journey

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Weight Watchers and I go back to 1970 when I was 15 years old and weighed 20 lb. more
than I should have for my age and height. My mom, who always worried that my “obesity”
was making people criticize her, decided that she needed to lose weight (she did) and
dragged me along with her. I was very successful, enjoying the “freedom” of a food
plan, and I got down to my goal weight less than 6 months later. It took a lot longer
than I anticipated, my metabolism already slow from years of dieting being forced on
me…but I digress.

Six months after having gotten to my goal weight, I found myself having gained it all
back and then some. So began the story of my constant dieting, both with fad diets or
healthy ones. I, however, have always gone back to Weight Watchers because it was the
only sensible way to lose weight. Even today, I think it has merit but I think the
most important part of the whole Weight Watchers success has to do with the philosophy
that overeating and yo-yo dieting are not just about loving food. Issues must be
addressed and that is where it becomes necessary to attend meetings and share, at least
for me.

I joined the on-line Weight Watchers once or twice in the last decade but found that it
is not the same to go on line, no matter what the resources. In the country where I
live, there is no such franchise, obesity being so common it is actually the norm!

What prompted me to think about Weight Watchers today, I know not but it has been good to
reminisce, to see pictures of Jean Nidetch at her finest and to remember with optimism
that I know how to lose and keep the weight off, I just need to commit. I have not looked
at my scale in more than a week, I have also not overeaten and feel that at least for this
week, I have not gained weight. I can do this. I want to do this. But I also want to thank
the chubby body that I now have for always, always, supporting me. Although I am carrying
a good 40 lbs. more than I should, nothing hurts me, I am still an active participant in
my life and I am happy.