Thursday, July 16, 2020

Why Points Plus and Not Smart Points

Whenever there's a change in the WW program.... a lot of people whine.  I'm one of them!  If the program isn't broke, why fix it?

Like I've said before, I lost my weight originally on the original points and points plus.  I like both of those programs but my favorite is Points Plus.  It worked for me and fit my lifestyle.

When smart points came out, I did give it a try....I tried hard.  I remember sitting in meetings and people would be losing huge amounts of weight....and I wasn't losing at all.  Freestyle?  Nope, that didn't work either.

For a long time I blamed myself, my brain wasn't in weight loss mode, you're falling off plan and letting it destroy you.  YOU, YOU, YOU.  It never occurred to me that maybe smart points and all it's plans (Beyond the Scale, Freestyle, Green, Blue, Purple) just weren't the plans for me.  Every once in a while I'd dive back to Points Plus and lose some weight.....but I was determined to do it on Smart Points.

I'd even make it harder on myself....I'd double track, Points Plus on itrackbites and Smart Points on WW app.  Why?  I was looking for a way to transfer to Smart Points exclusively.  Double and even triple tracking takes time, is tedious and doesn't help with the weight.  I had become obsessed with the type of point I was on.

Like I said previously, the pandemic has set me straight.  No meetings (I tried virtual once and hated it) - so the excuse I needed that meeting for "accountability" went away.  I mean really, I wasn't losing, so accountability wasn't working.  Virtual was useless.  And basically, for me, Smart Points in any form was useless.

So I cancelled WW (took app completely off phone for last few weeks) and put my itrackbites app back on the main screen and set it for Carb Conscious (their version of Points Plus).  I also set the app to show me the calories.  It's given me that weight loss mode brain is in the right place....I'm back at the plan that worked for me.

Today's menu:

Breakfast:  A flat out carb down wrap with 1 tbsp of whipped pb, a dannon light & fit yogurt, slice of cucumber and a banana.  Total 6 pt.

Lunch:  Hamburger on roll, apple with drizzle of caramel, dill pickles.  Total 11 pt.

Dinner:  Parmesan Crusted Chicken Breasts and 2 corn on cob.  Total 12 pt.

Total for day:  29 pts.  1467 calories

I may use some weeklies for a little something later in the evening; but for now it's complete!

Wednesday, July 15, 2020

Calories vs. Points

In case you haven't noticed, there is a big debate online regarding calories and points.  In a lot of cases people are discovering they are within in their points but not within their calorie range.  Overeating the zero foods can cause you to go over your calorie range; but most are discovering they are way under in calories.

So it's causing a WW debate.

I follow very few on YouTube, but of the few I do there seems to be much debate on this topic.

One person I follow was having some health issues.  She was discovered to be very anemic (not due to WW) and when the doctor saw her menus, he informed her that she was eating way under 1200 calories a day (1200 is the suggested minimum) which was messing up her metabolism.  Now she didn't come out and blast WW because of it; she seriously had to look at her menus and on most days she ate cucumbers for lunch.  You read that right, just cucumbers. With her doctor's help she is working on this.

Another was having the same issue - points were perfect but the calories were way too low.  She's offering a challenge to eat within your calorie range.

Another, though agreeing that you need to eat appropriately, feels that if you eat how you're really suppose to on WW, you'll get the calories in. 

Another has been tracking both points and calories on itrackbites and is finally making the break from points.

Everyone's opinion is different; no one is bashing WW.  They all feel that WW gave them the tools necessary at a certain time.

Right now, I've decided to ditch the WW app and move over to itrackbites.  With itrackbites I can do the Points Plus plan that I love and watch my calories as well.  When I did Points Plus the lowest daily points were 29; they later lowered that to 26.  I'm choosing to start at 29 and see how it goes.

Today's menu:

Breakfast:  Almonds/Walnut pack 3; Instant Oatmeal 3; Banana 0
Lunch:  KFC chicken breast-no skin 3; KFC chicken wing-no skin-2; KFC mashed potatoes/gravy 3
Dinner:  Hamburger 5; roll 3; steak fries 3
Snack: Pure Protein Shake with spinach, orange flavoring, ice and fat free whipped topping 3

Total points for day:  28
Total calories for day:  1249

Saturday, July 11, 2020


I'll probably be giving you a lot of information on an app called "itrackbites" in future posts; but until the end of this month I'm still using the WW app.  However the app doesn't matter; at present I'm getting ready to start the Blue plan on WW.

WW produces several types of members.  If you join any of the numerous unofficial WW groups on FB, you'll discover this quickly because people will be quick to point out how you're doing the program wrong; they love to point out how wrong you are.

Here's the types:

Those that only eat off the no count food list.  This is mostly those doing blue or purple.  For some reason they think that because something is on the no count list - it's the better options to eat.  That is partially true.  The foods on the list are a good way to start building a meal but if you only eat those foods, you're going to get bored with the live-it rather quickly.  The program has the points built in, do it!

Those that do things exactly by the book.  These are the people that will never go off the plan; the do it exactly as written.  They are the Holy Grail of WW and they also are very annoying.

Those that do the program but make it their own.  They use the guidelines as a base and through trial and error learn what works for them and what doesn't.  They don't want to spend the rest of their lives counting points and tracking.  They want to know what foods they can eat in what amounts and still lose or maintain their weight.

I'm in the third group....I hope you will be too, though if the other two choices work for you; then go for it!  Make it your own!

Although the programs have changed quite a lot over the years...I try to stick to the Good Health Guidelines that the old programs suggested:   6 cups of water, 3-5 servings of fruit/veggies, 2 dairy, 1 multivitamin, 2 tsp of healthy oils.

Now WW had guidelines for these....the oils had to be pourable oils such as vegetable, canola, etc....  Dairy was 1 cup of milk or 1 oz of cheese.  You get the picture.  I never followed these exactly.  I considered a container of yogurt a serving of dairy even though it wasn't exactly a cup.  I considered real butter as an oil if I was using it to cook eggs or something in (not as a potato topping).  You get the picture.

The guidelines went away when smart points came around.  I guess it was because smart points pushing the sugar out to an extreme and proteins went down in points and they figured you were eating healthier; but I still think they are good things to follow.

So one change I'm making is to follow the Good Health Guidelines from long ago.
There's no way to track that in the WW app; but itrackbites does have that as an option called "Health Checks".

Friday, July 10, 2020

The First Five

Yeah, I haven't started the diet yet.

But tonight I was sitting on the floor in the living room and had to get up.  It was a struggle.  A struggle I had long forgot about.

It's time to start the diet.  I can't put it off any longer.

It's time to lose that first five pounds.

You'll notice that I always refer to it as a "diet" and not a "lifestyle change".  I hate the term "lifestyle change".  "Lifestyle Change" sounds fun, exciting, can't wait to get to it!  No one has that much excitement losing weight.

I think I'll refer to it as a "Live It".  This SNL skit describes it perfectly:

Let's face it - LIVE IT - is the perfect name for it.  When it comes to will take over your entire life - it will be what you are living.

Onward to the first five.

Sunday, July 5, 2020

Me & WW

I’m a WW Lifetime member, but I haven’t been at goal in a long time.

My journey is about to start again.

I originally started WW in September 2010. At that time WW was using the original point plan (often referred to these days as classic points or just points). I lost my first 20 lbs on that plan in the first 16 weeks. When WW used the motto “eat all your favorite foods and still lose weight”, this is the plan they were talking about.

After the first 16 weeks, WW changed the plan and introduced Points Plus. Point Plus (pp) took the bad carbs into account and, in hopes of pushing members to snack healthier, declared you could count fruits as 0. I lost the rest of my weight on this program and became lifetime in August 2011.

I was never able to maintain for long though, at least not within the 2 lb range that WW requires to keep a free membership, but I did stay within 6 lbs of that range for quite a while. The stress of not being able to be “free” overwhelmed me and the weight slowly came back on.

I went back to WW many times but could never really “get into it” like I did the first time. No one could offer advice to help. I would consistently lose the same 10 lbs over and over.

Then I walked into a meeting one week and saw a sign that said “The biggest change in 50 years coming to WW”. I realized that a new plan was coming and maybe that’s exactly what I needed!

Smart Points arrived… it really wasn’t the biggest change in 50 years, just another point plan.

Smart Points attacked sugar and all those sweet treats were so high in points that they could wipe out all your daily points. I have a love/hate relationship with Smart Points. I understand its purpose, but I don’t like being punished for wanting a treat on occasion. Needless to say, I failed….

I would stop going…I would start going…hoping my mojo would kick in…it didn’t.

Two years later the Freestyle program jumped on the scene and now we were looking at a list of 200 foods that WW said you could track as 0. As with any change there was whining and complaining.

I liked Freestyle, but I wasn’t successful.

Now WW has introduced a new plan where there is 3 plans to choose from – Green (which is the original Smart Points plan), Blue (which is Freestyle) and Purple (which is Freestyle with a bigger 0 list).

So is it the programs or me? Well I believe it’s a little of both. To lose weight, your mind really needs to be in weight loss mode, unfortunately if you wait around for that, you may never lose. That’s the issue I’ve been dealing with. The constant changing in programs can get frustrating and often leaves the old timers behind.

None-the-less, I decided I need to give it another try. My whole self isn’t well, I’m tired all the time and eating worse than I ever have. It’s time to take care of me.

Why WW again? Because it’s the one program I can make work for me. Trust me I’ve tried others and just counting calories, I never last long. So I’m back to WW digital and basically trying to stay successful! Here’s to success!