Counting ProPoints

I started Weight Watchers a few weeks ago after seeing a video of myself being interviewed at a conference. You can never trust a photo – a bad or good angle makes all the difference – but with a video, you realise exactly how you look when you talk, smile and laugh. And so I realised that the double chin is always there.

It was week four this evening and weigh-in number three. So far I’ve lost each meeting, with 6.5 lbs in total – just a tiny half a pound away from my first silver seven! Weight Watchers is a system that works for me – it fits with my day to day life but means I can go crazy at the weekend if I want, which so far seems likely!

Three things that I’ve discovered so far:

Fruit. Using the ProPoints system, most fruit and vegetables are point free. This has made such a difference to my eating habits – I’m still grazing throughout the day, but it’s on a variety of different interesting fruits. I’m typically at 5 a day by lunchtime.

Portion control. For these first few weeks, I’ve been weighing and measuring almost everything. I’m starting to get an idea of what a tablespoon of mayo looks like or how many Blueberry Wheaties is a normal portion. Moving in with my boyfriend was definitely a major cause of gaining weight – I started cooking larger portions and then just split everything by two. This has been a great reminder of how much food I actually need to fill myself up.

Tracking. This is pretty much Weight Watcher’s core method – write down every single thing you eat or drink. I have to do this on the go or I forget things, so the WW iPhone app is brilliant. Only available if you sign up to monthly pass though, but well worth it.

Three things I’ve heard and want to try:

Red plates. The colour red is so hardwired into our brains as ‘STOP’ that apparently eating off a red plate encourages you to stop eating when you get fuller and start seeing more and more of the plate. I hate chucking food away but I guess it’s better to do that than eat more than you need to. Just need to buy some new crockery now…

Chickpeas. A gold member who attends my meetings used to swear by dried chickpeas on nights out. She’d put as many chickpeas in her bag as she had points to use, and then as she drank throughout the night would throw out a chickpea for each point. When she ran out of chickpeas she knew she’d had enough. I really like this idea but seem to find myself at events with limited booze options lately – only realising when I go to point up that the Rekorderlig I’ve been drinking is a massive 8 ProPoints.

Make your own chocolate box. I love this one – a woman who loved to indulge in boxes of chocolates used to regularly buy selections of the different Weight Watchers low points bars, chop them up into bitesize pieces, and refill a chocolate box with them. She could scoff a whole box of chocolates and it was still only a few points.

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