Weekly Weigh In #9

FINALLY, a good weigh in! Today, I weighed in, expecting a gain, and I …

Lost 1 pound

This is kind of confusing because… in my frustration with last week’s gain, I kind of lost it on Saturday. I ate corned beef, butter cabbage, bread, cupcakes, and two cups of Bailey’s Irish Cream. I got back on track on Sunday, but I had just decided to say “Screw it” and eat what I wanted on Saturday. But, I did start exercising more, and also tracked really well otherwise. Weird, right?

Anyways. The important thing I want to talk about today is my “new plan”. I met with the CSUN Nutritionist Ellen, this week. In 2008, Ellen helped me drop 30 pounds, simply by telling me what kinds of food to eat and what to avoid. I printed out my daily trackers, and we revealed two interesting things: 1) I tend to rely on the frozen SmartOnes for lunches. The SmartOnes aren’t enough to satisfy my hunger, as evidenced by all the salty, snacky things that were racking up points during the day. 2) Even though I stayed within my 39 points a day, I was yo-yoing the same couple pounds, back and forth. Ellen did the math – and even at my reduced 39 points a day (I originally got 42), Weight Watchers was putting me at around consuming 2,400 calories a day!

This is a big deal, because, to lose one pound a week, I should be eating about 1,900 calories a day at my current weight and activity level. My nutritionist even said – in theory, Weight Watchers works for most people. The keyword is MOST. Apparently, I’m one of those lucky few that doesn’t fit into the one size fits all. She even said Weight Watchers is the best program around – and she recommends it all the time – but sometimes, the math just isn’t right for everybody. As such, I will now be counting calories, via my Fitness Pal, and trying to stay around 1,700 calories a day. I’ll finish out my current Weight Watchers program I paid for, which I think is a few more weeks, but I probably won’t be tracking. I might actually track AND count calories one week, just to see what the discrepancy truly is.

How do I feel about all of this? I feel relieved. For weeks now, I’ve been beating myself up, wondering what I was doing wrong, why I just couldn’t DO THIS as tons of people around me dropped the weight, enjoying their extra points each weekend as mine were taken away. It wasn’t all my fault. It was a computation error – a mathematical oops, a simple case of numbers not exactly making sense. Now that I know what’s going on, I have a new, alternative plan and a trusted mentor to get me through this.  I can do this – I will do this – I AM doing this!

Whew. So yeah. Finally, I have some answers.

 

Weekly Weigh In #7 – In which I want to bitchslap Weight Watchers in the face.

After a week of diligent tracking, a four mile hike, a dance class, and several miles walked on breaks at work, I…

lost a whopping .2 of a pound

I’m frustrated. Not gonna lie. Thinking about canceling Weight Watchers on the spot and drowning my sorrows in peeps, guacamole and Mike’s Hard Lemonade. But I’m not going to do that. I calmly met with my Weight Watchers leader after the meeting and we went over a few things.

The first thing is we agreed to reduce my daily points target by two points. This means eating less. The second thing is, I can’t use any of my “extra” or “flex” points. That sucks. Those are usually my weekend enjoyment points, where I’ll have a hard cider or a cupcake or popcorn.I’ve also been instructed to eat a maximum of three pieces of fruit a day.

I have mixed feelings about this all. First, I’m pissed that my second go around on the new Weight Watchers Points Plus system is turning out the same as the first. I’m paying for the plan because, ya know, even their copyrighted tagline is, “because it works.” Clearly it doesn’t work in a one size fits all way. I’m supposed to be able to follow the plan and have 49 extra points and all my daily points that the calculator decides for me… and I can’t. I’m supposed to be able to eat unlimited fruit. And I can’t. I’m not saying it doesn’t work at all, because it obviously does… for people like my friends KjPugs, WonderWallA Bit of This and All the Weigh. These people have rocked the plan, and lost tons of weight, and it was more than just the plan – it was their dedication, blood, sweat and tears. I’m not saying I’m following the plan perfectly, because I’m sure sometimes my measurements are off or I track something as less than it is – but I think I’m at about 90% genuine compliance.

Gratuitous Photo of Leo the Cat because I don't have any pictures that apply!

Am I just not compatible with Weight Watchers? I’m really fed up, but I’m going to try at least for a month with the no flex/extra points, less fruit and lower daily points target. If after a month I’m still honest to goodness trying and not seeing results, I gotta move on. I see my nutritionist early next week, and I can’t wait to dive into my tracking history with her and see what knowledge she can give me. I successfully lost 30 pounds in 2008 under her instruction, so I know she can steer me in the right direction.

I think the hardest thing about this is trying to figure out why, a couple times, I’ve managed to lose 2.8 pounds a week. The only thing I’ve discovered is that was a week I didn’t use flex points – so hopefully this will do the trick. Still… kind of crappy. What do you think I should do? Keep at it and see if these tweaks will do the trick? Abandon Weight Watchers and go back to sensible eating and exercise without a plan? Say screw it and accept my zaftig unhealthy weight? 🙂 Choices, Choices… I gotta lose the weight because there’s something coming up in the near future that will require a fit and healthy body- and NO, for the love of god, I am not pregnant.

I’ll share the exciting news in the next post 🙂 Have a marvelous Monday!

 

Weekly Weigh In #2

Today was my second Weight Watchers weigh in, and I was feeling pretty confident. I tracked everything I ate, and only ate 29 of my flex points. I didn’t get much exercise and I probably could have done more water, but in total, the week went well and I was sure it would result in at least a pound lost. I stepped on the scale and I…

Gained .2

I believe the first thing out of my mouth was “What the f*ck?”, except without the little asterisk because I’m pretty much a sailor’s daughter.  The leader offered a few suggestions, like, “Did you use all of your flex points?” No, I didn’t. “Did you eat something salty for dinner last night?” No, I didn’t. “Are you near your monthly cycle?” Sorry if it’s TMI, but no. So WHAT THE FFFFF!! I moped through the rest of the meeting and felt sorry for myself (and may have tweeted a couple of pouting tweets), and then I got over it. Shit happens. So I didn’t lose this week when I feel like I really should have. Life will go on, and all I can do is keep on tracking, and try to identify why I didn’t lose this week.

Here’s a few thoughts – I was bad about drinking water. I’m back in school and my schedule is now in full-on crazy mode. I’ve felt thirsty a lot, and I know by the time I get to that point, I’m already dehydrated. So this week, more water. I also didn’t exercise much because of aforementioned bad schedule. This week I need to get movin’, even if it’s just walking a few laps around the campus at work. I also wonder if I’m eating too much fruit. Even though it’s 0 points, it still has calories, and yesterday I ate 3 clementines, a peach, a banana and a cup of pineapple. I struggled with this the last time around on PointsPlus, so I may need to see how the next couple of weeks go and re-evaluate my fling with fruit.

When was the last time you were expecting a good thing to happen and it didn’t? Are you the type of person that suffers a setback and bounces right back, or are you like me, and need to stew and pout about it for a bit before you move on?

Rockin’ Red Potatoes

Do you know how much I love potatoes? THIS MUCH *stretches arms out wide* Potatoes are awesome. I think they’re kind of underrated, because admittedly, they’re not the most flavorful thing in the world – but maybe what makes them so great is how they can be dressed up in so many different ways. Recently, I had an influx of red potatoes as Matt and I both bought bags of them without realizing we already had them. I decided to utilize the massive herb garden at our house and make herb potatoes. While the points value isn’t super low (6+ per cup), potatoes are so filling that you don’t need a massive serving, and these kind of feel like junk food because they’re so yummy. Roast them until they’re golden brown and crunchy and you’ll think, “What diet?”.

Crispety Crunchy Golden Deliciousness

You need:
5 Large Red Potatoes, scrubbed,cut into chunks and then rinsed (removes extra starch)
2 Chopped Green Onions
2 TBSP Olive Oil
2 TBSP Water
2 TBSP Fresh Rosemary
2 TBSP Fresh Oregano
2 TBSP Fresh Thyme
2 Garlic cloves
Salt to taste

Green Goodness

Preheat your oven to 400. In a food processor, add all of the washed herbs (stems removed), green onions, 2 tbsp olive oil, garlic cloves, salt and water.

Slime!

Pulse until it’s a paste – it’s ok if it still has some herb texture. In a large mixing bowl, toss the raw potatoes with the herb paste until the chunks are coated.

Spread on a pan so they get nice and tan!

Arrange in a single layer on a baking pan and roast until they’re brown on the sides and easily pierced with a fork.

Finito! Bon Apetit!

Eat one serving, resist seconds, pretend you didn’t eat five more of them off the baking sheet, and enjoy!

Weekly Weigh In #1

*Trumpet fanfare* I had my first weigh-in yesterday… and it was successful! I lost two pounds! In my weight watchers experience past I usually have a more impressive loss the first week of the plan, but I definitely used all of my weekly flex points (those are kind of like a “free” pass for a  little splurge or treat (but you still have to track ’em)) and ate well all week, including fatty fatbomb things like ice cream and garlic bread. (Curious what points are? They’re a numerical value assigned to food based on carbs, fat grams, protein and fiber. For example, an orange is 0 points, but a dinner roll is around 4 points.) (How many points you get to eat a day depends on your weight. This is one instance where being fat = win.)


The biggest struggle this week was remembering to chart what and when I ate. It’s not second nature for me yet to write down what I’ve just eaten, but thankfully, the iPhone app I’m using has little text reminders that pop up and remind me to log everything. Another challenge? Not having seconds. Sure, on the plan I can have seconds, but I think logging everything makes me realize the give and take or the trade off value of seconds versus say, having dessert later.

Today I stocked up on pre-portioned snacks, because I need a lot of grab n’ go options with my busy schedule. I picked up some Fiber-One 90 calorie brownies (2p+), natural fruit leathers (1p+) and some yummy instant iced tea flavors like mango acai. My challenge this week will be continuing to track and make good choices amongst the usual stress and chaos – I have a busy week coming up!

If you’ve ever started a “lifestyle change” or diet, what was your most impressive first week loss?

Zucchini Killer Recipe #1


I'm not famous enough yet to blur out the labels. And I'm lazy.

Zucchini are the parasite of the garden, because once you have one… you have 1,000. It’s like having fleas… on crack. I love growing zucchini because they’re easy to grow, but we have SO MANY ZUCCHINI. I have been giving them away to anyone who will take them, but tonight I actually used some and made one of my favorite zucchini recipes – summer squash pasta. It’s relatively simple and easy to make, and apparently, pretty healthy! I also used Orrechiette for the first time (it means “Little Ears” in italian!).

Slicing evenly isn't my forte.

First, you want to chop up your zucchini, mushrooms and onion. Heat two tablespoons of olive oil in a large pan on medium and add the vegetables. Stir to coat vegetables with olive oil. Crush two big fat cloves of garlic into this. Keep this on medium/low, because the veggies have a high water content and will cook fairly quickly. If you cook too high, the zucchini will burn and get bitter.

Sea Salt and Pepper

Get your pot of water going for your pasta. You can use any pasta you want, I just happened to have Orrechiette on hand since I’d read about it in “Everyday Food”. I usually use something fairly dense like farfalle or rotini for a dish with lots of chunky vegetables in it – gives the oil and cheese something to stick on to. Once the onions are transparent and everything has shrunk down a bit, add 1/2 cup cheese, the frozen peas, and season very liberally with salt and pepper. (Remember: salt enhances vegetables but it’s a fine line between too little and too much. DO NOT BE AFRAID TO TASTE AS YOU GO!!!)

Steaaaaaam

Has it been 11 minutes? Good. Let the pasta keep cooking. (The box lied – these little ears took about 17 minutes to cook instead of 11! Sheesh! The only way to tell if pasta is done is to pluck one out of the scalding water, let it cool for a few seconds on a spatula, and then burn the roof of your mouth as you see if it’s done!) Drain the pasta and shake it a few times to get all that bath water off of it. (Some people rinse, but I don’t. I guess I’m a rebel like that.)

Next, pour all of the pasta into your pan and gently mix to coat the pasta with the vegetables, juice, and cheese. When you’ve mixed it pretty good, add most of the rest of the remaining half cup of shredded cheese. Save some for the top of your dish – it will be worth it.

The Finished Product!

I calculated all of this out in the Weight Watchers Recipe Builder, and it’s coming in at 7 points per serving. The picture shown here is 1.5 cups which cost me 10 points – not bad at all for a delicious, filling, and savory pasta dinner. The picture below has more accurate portions and Weight Watchers listings, if you’re curious! Enjoy – and watch for the next Zucchini Killer recipe coming soon!