Oddly enough this isn’t going to be a post about Birmingham scrapping for survival, or even my thoughts on what it would take to get us promoted. This isn’t even a sporty post!
As I have previously blogged, I am doing Weight Watchers. It’s going swimmingly, I’m losing weight week on week and progress is being made.
You guessed it, there’s a but, there’s always a but!
I really struggle to eat my daily points allowance. At one of my last weigh-ins I was asked by the young lady serving in meeting snacks what my allocation was, so I told her – 55 points for the day. She gasped and proclaimed that was nearly double her own allowance.
Firstly, the woman in question is a lot shorter than me, nearly a foot or so shorter. Plus, she’s not massive for her size. So there was always bound to be differences. But men generally getting a larger allocation of points to spend I’m told. The laymen in me assumes this is along the same lines that men and women have different recommended daily calorie intakes, but I’m only guessing.
Anyway. Back to me. 55 points … how to spend them?
The girlfriend and I are fully involved in planning, cooking and pointing nutritious, hearty meals that range from around 8 points to approximately 15 per meal. So that’s dinner. And for the sake of argument, let’s say we’ve gone for a 15-point dinner (which is practically a treat meal).
During the week for work, I make myself overnight oats with berries – rolled oats, Alpro yoghurt, skimmed milk, flaxseed and some frozen berries. Lovely! That’s a 9-point breakfast that happily sees me through to lunch.
Then lunch time swings around at work and I have so far used a couple of strategies. I spent a week having bought some healthy eating frozen meals, on average 10-points a pop. I have also spent a week having leftovers from dinner the night before, on average 12-points a pop.
so, on an average weekday I spend between 34-36 points a day on 3 square meals. That leaves me with 20 points left I need to clear to hit target!
In my mind, 3 square meals with a few whole fruits as snacks is plenty in a day. Well, according to my points it isn’t.
I now begin to find myself in a situation where snacking on fruit is almost pointless because I need to clock up points. All the fruit I eat: Banana’s, apples and pears are all zero points with Weight Watchers.
The other day, I decided to have a fourth meal of the day when I got home from work. I made myself scrambled eggs on toast using 3 eggs and 2 slices of toast. It felt like a good way to use up my remaining points for the day, but by the time I had eaten dinner a couple of hours later I felt over-full. Consequently, I was really hungry when I woke up the following morning because I had just eaten a lot the day before.
So what’s the answer?
Snack? – I already indulge in Weight Watchers friendly snacks throughout the day, but I could simply up my snack rate to cover the deficit. But somehow this doesn’t seem right as a choice. Plus, does it begin to set a bad precedent as a lifestyle choice to snack so much for when I eventually end my Weight Watchers journey?
Increase portion size? – again, does this set a bad precedent when trying to change my lifestyle? If I get used to bigger portions, of albeit healthy food, then I’m not training myself to eat more reasonable portions sizes.
Eat a fourth meal a day? – potentially, this could be the way forward, although I would find it difficult to space these out throughout the day evenly enough to not feel as though I was eating 2 meals back to back.
Relax, chill, don’t take it so seriously? – it could be that I’m concentrating far too much on having healthy balanced meals. Really all that is required is for me to be a little more carefree during these early stages. Obviously stick to my points, but not worry so much about what was making up those points.
The last point seems quite relevant. Am I getting far too serious about my points too early? I mean, whilst I have this decent number of points to spend should I just be a bit more “fuck it” with my attitude because I have that leeway?
The Dark Side
Just to alleviate fears any readers may have that I’m the perfect picture of hitting points I need to be honest. I have had two bad weekends in my opening 3 weeks of being involved in Weight Watchers.
The first, involved a friend’s birthday on the Friday – a two course meal at a nice pub restaurant, then onto a bar after was tricky negotiating. I clung onto my points reasonably well. But then onto Saturday where I visited my sister for a town music festival which was a day of drinking. The Saturday got off to a bad start waking up late, so an emergency McDonalds Breakfast was had to line our stomachs for the day ahead! I had previously warned my sister I was on Weight Watchers and asked her to buy some healthier sausages for the breakfast Sunday. Well, she got it wrong and I ended up having full fat special sausages which ate into my points. After getting home, feeling a little sorry for myself and with a hungover girlfriend, the decision was made to order a dominos each. Talk about a bad weekend for my points!
The following weekend I didn’t do too well either. Friday night catching up with a friend I don’t see enough involved beers. I said to myself I can have 6 and stay on track, I had even adjusted my eating to allow the points for the beers. Well, 5 beers in and from nowhere outcomes a double rum and coke – he was kind enough to order diet, but still. A few more of those before going home smashed my desires on points. Then the Saturday was the start of the football season for me, you can read about it here. But, I had planned my day prior to Weight Watchers and centred around enjoying a drink whilst watching some football. I moderated my food intake for the day compared to usual, but still, the damage was done.
So I haven’t been perfect, but I always look to accommodate my points in my activities and those weekends taught me a lot about being social and staying on point. In fact, I might try and do a blog about it in the future. But the fact remains, life can just sometimes get in the way, and you have to make room for life as well as weight loss.
I have been fortunate I have been able to fit these things in and still lose weight every week. I must admit though, the notion that I could have potentially lost more had I behaved myself fully can grind on me a little. But then I knew I probably wouldn’t have had the same fun, so I square it off like that.
No Good Answer
I have a gut feeling, there is no really good answer. Weight Watchers don’t really care how you hit points, as long as you hit points (as long as you see it reflected in the scales). That’s not a criticism you understand. It is just the way of the world and Weight Watchers wanting you to lose weight. You’re losing weight, you’re hitting points through whatever means necessary, BOOM!
Winner, winner chicken dinner! (only if I have the points left!)
Week 5 weigh in last night, I have officially lost a stone! Feeling pretty smug about it too!