weight watchers flex – my first thoughts

I’ve mentioned in my last couple of meal plans that I’ve been struggling lately.  After getting some bad news about my health, I’ve been swaying between comfort and all-out binge eating.  This week I decided enough was enough, and dragged my sorry arse back to Weight Watchers.  And my timing couldn’t have been better, because there waiting for me was a shiny new plan – Weight Watchers Flex!

weight watchers flex

I’m only two days in, so I don’t have any progress to report.  But I wanted to take a moment to share how I feel about this new plan.  I know change can be hard for some people.  If you’re looking at this new plan with trepidation, I hope I can reassure you.  And if you’re looking to start (or shake up) your weight loss journey, maybe I can convince you that Weight Watchers Flex is the best way to go.

 

weight watchers flex

I am so excited about this plan!  I think it’s going to make life so much easier for so many people.  Previously it was just most fruits and vegetables which had zero SmartPoints. But now that selection has expanded to include vegetable protein sources, unsmoked fish and seafood, skinless chicken and turkey breast, eggs and fat free plain yogurt.

The way you use your allowance has changed too, with the ability to rollover up to four of your daily SmartPoints to add to your weekly allowance. That means you’re covered for weekends or special occasions.  For me, that means being less likely to have that “fuck-it” moment.  You know, where you blow your allowance on one day and then the whole week spirals into food overload. I know I can’t be the only one who knows that feeling!

I think Weight Watchers Flex is the most lifestyle-friendly plan they’ve ever had. It brings together all the things that were so great about previous plans, whilst making it all  more simple.  I suppose the clue is in the name – it’s so much more flexible than ever before.  And healthier, too.

why do we need a new plan?

I know there will be sceptics out there who see a new plan being launched and say well that means there was something wrong about the old plan.  I totally disagree.  Sure – if it ain’t broke don’t try to fix it, and all that.  But just because something isn’t broken doesn’t mean you can’t make it better.  And that’s what I think Weight Watchers are really good at.

At it’s very basic level, the science of weight loss is simple – eat less energy than you burn, and you’ll lose weight.  But the science of health, and the science of long-term change are different stories all together.  You could lose weight eating fast food three times a day, as long as you ate less calories than you burned. But I hate to think what your insides would look like, and what would Ronald McDonald really teach you in the long run?

What Weight Watchers Flex does is focus on health and behaviour change.  Those are the two things so crucial to long term success. The zero SmartPoints foods promote healthy choices.  Unlike SlimmingWorld, there are no Muller Lights, Mug Shots or other processed crap in the “zero heroes” list.  And unlike the Clean Eating movement, there is room for indulgences and convenience foods should you need or want them, so it isn’t expensive, restrictive or unrealistic.  And you can make your allowance work for you. More indulgent days can be compensated for by days where you use less SmartPoints.  But that doesn’t mean you go hungry on those days, because the zero hero foods will keep you full and bursting with energy.

 

what weight watchers flex means for me

When I first started losing weight, my diet was full of low-fat this and diet that.  Light versions of things which were just full of crap to mask the lack of real ingredients.  Over the years I’ve learned more about how to eat healthily, using less processed foods.  I think it’s really cool that the Weight Watchers plans over that time have also evolved in the same direction.

When I followed SlimmingWorld, I started eating convenience foods I’d previously worked hard to cut out, just because they were free or healthy extras.   With Weight Watchers Flex I have a plan that encourages me to keep making healthier choices rather than opting for processed foods. A plan which means I can use my allowance on the certain processed foods I want to enjoy (like chocolate…).

My mind has already switched back into a gear which makes me feel happy about my food decisions.  For me that is half the battle. With more flexibility comes less restriction or the feeling of being deprived.  If I feel happy, healthy and in control I’m much less likely to binge, and more likely to stick with it.

So although there wont be a dramatic change to the way I eat, this new plan has reignited my desire.  A desire not only to lose weight, but to be the healthiest version of me that I can possibly be.  That is so important, because this time around I’m not looking to just drop the pounds.  I’m sick of yo-yoing, I want a way of eating and living that I can keep up for life.  I think Weight Watchers Flex is it.

 

 

Are you a Weight Watcher?  What do you think about the new plan?

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back to weight watchers (goodbye slimming world)

If you’ve been following my blog you will know that I’ve been going to Slimming World.  But my diet loyalties always belonged to another programme, and the inevitable has happened – I’ve switched back to Weight Watchers.

 

back to weight watchers

 

slimming world and me

I joined Slimming World when I was pregnant, to make sure I didn’t balloon like I did in my other two pregnancies.  Weight Watchers don’t allow you to attend when you’re pregnant. But I needed the accountability of a weekly weigh-in to keep me on track.  So, feeling like a cheating hussy, I ditched my beloved Weight Watchers for the enemy.

After our baby was born in June, I kept going to Slimming World. The class is a friendly wee place and I like the consultant.  As I had some pregnancy (and pre-pregnancy…) weight to lose I thought I’d stick with it.  But over 7 weeks I only lost 3.5lbs.  Admittedly, my head was not in the weight loss game.  I wasn’t really on plan a lot of the time, so the lack of progress isn’t really a representation of Slimming World if you’re doing it right.   The thing with diets is that they all work, even the crazy ones.  What makes or breaks a diet is whether you can stick to it long term. Whether it fits in with your life.  For me, Slimming World just didn’t, and I wasn’t inspired by the plan.  So I’ve gone back to Weight Watchers.

 

heading back to weight watchers

Weight Watchers was the programme which helped me drop from a size 22 to a size 8.  It was the programme that turned my life around. It gave me skills and knowledge about health and nutrition which I still apply today, 15 years after my first meeting.  I love the programme so much that I even worked as a leader for a short while.  Even knowing what I do now about the diet industry, the importance of a sustainable diet and the trap that low-fat/reduced calorie/light/diet foods are, I still think the programme is amazing.  That’s why I’ve decided to go back to Weight Watchers.

We all operate in different ways when it comes to keeping ourselves on track.  I need to monitor pretty much everything that goes in my mouth or I get a bit carried away.  Let’s just say I’m pretty generous to myself unless I’m making a conscious effort to stay in check.  I’m an eater who doesn’t have an off switch. I think that was why Slimming World never sat right with me.  It was too easy to have more rice or potatoes because they were “free.” And don’t get me started on the Muller Lights (see my rant about the things I hate about Slimming World).  I need structure, limits and a way to measure what I’m shoving in my gob.  Going back to Weight Watchers gives me all of that.

For me, besides the programme itself, the big plus of Weight Watchers is just how good the app and website are.  The app is all singing, all dancing.  You can track your SmartPoints, your weight and your exercise.  You can look up or work out the SmartPoints in literally any food, and even build recipes to work out their SmartPoints too.  It syncs with all sorts of fitness trackers, so you get instant rewards for your activity.  It means I can take my diet with me everywhere. There is no guessing and I always know how to make the best choices.

 

the proof is in the pudding…

…ok, inappropriate analogy for a diet comparison.  But the test of whether a diet works is in the weight loss. In 5 weeks since going back to Weight Watchers I’ve lost 8lbs.  I’ve not been on track all that time, but the programme is so easy to follow and the app such an amazing tool that I’m motivated to stick with it most of the time.

I’m so glad I decided to switch.  For the first time in a long while I feel inspired to make changes, convinced I can do it and excited about the future.  Those size 12 clothes waiting patiently in my wardrobe hopefully wont be waiting for much longer!

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25 weeks pregnant + having an affair

Ok, so I have to throw out a confession to the universe.

I am 25 weeks pregnant and I’m cheating…on my weight loss programme.

And when I say cheating, I don’t mean like scoffing chocolate cake in that blindspot straight after weigh-in, or “forgetting” to write down the gruesome truth of what I actually ate over the weekend.  I don’t even mean hiding behind that old “eating for two” excuse I could so easily fall back on in my knocked-up state.  Because anyone who has ever tried to lose weight will know that the only person you’re cheating on with those sorts of indiscretions is yourself.

When I say cheating, I mean I’ve switched to a major competitor of the programme that I was once loyal to.

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