I just cancelled my Weight Watchers membership.
It feels kind of surreal since I’ve been doing the monthly pass since March 2009 and here it is 18 months later, but I had been thinking about it for a while and today just went for it. Here’s why…
Let me start out by saying I think Weight Watchers is amazing for someone starting out who wants to change their life. You learn portion control, how to spread your points (calories) out throughout the day, how much you SHOULD eat (which is usually drastically different from what you had been eating), etc. etc. I really do believe in Weight Watchers and think its a great springboard into a healthy lifestyle and will never forget that it’s where I started.
That said, I think I’ve come a long way since I first started my journey and to a point where I’ve sort of outgrown it. I no longer go to meetings and rarely use e-tools since I come up with most of my own recipes and know the points value of basically every food by heart (I’m a numbers girl) which are the two main benefits of paying for a membership.
When I first started with WW, I was eating mostly 100 calorie packs, fat free anything, prepackaged goods, and basically anything that was low-cal/low-fat/low-point so I could maximize what I was getting for my points. Throughout my journey to lose weight, I started slowly incorporating more whole foods into my diet as my points began to dwindle. Why have a 100 calorie pack of chocolate covered pretzels (6 pretzels in total!) when I could have an apple and a cup of grapes for the same points and be so much more satisfied?
Also, I FEEL healthy and fit. I just ran a half marathon on Sunday and felt good enough to go on an 11 mile bike ride 2 days later! Even though I feel and look healthy, according to Weight Watchers, I am 2.2 pounds overweight. I have been at this same weight since January 2010 (within a few pounds) and while I have made tremendous strides in my fitness, I have made little progress with my weight.
So maybe my body is happy where it is. Maybe the weight will fall off once I stop obsessing about it. I think the point is for me, I need to move away from being obsessed with scheduling my life around Thursday weigh ins (even though I rarely go) and with the number on the scale itself.
A real turning point for me was when, at a meeting, my Weight Watchers Leader asked what people like to put on their veggies. A lot of people said things like olive oil, salt and pepper, a little real butter… but then my leader said she had an even better suggestion. I couldn’t wait to hear what she had to suggest – I love new ideas! But then, she said “Fat-Free Gravy.” Many of the people in the room agreed or excitedly jotted it down to remember to pick it up at their next shopping trip. Um, really? Fat free gravy? Wow.
I think WW has been a security blanket for me since I know that I can always go back to counting points if all else fails. I’ve basically been paying $40 a month for the last 8 months just to have that security blanket and avoid trusting myself to do it, even though, when I look back at my journey, I really SHOULD trust me. I eat well, I work out a lot, and WW is not what’s holding me accountable. It’s just there if I fall off track and sort of as a bandaid in case I need it.
But, I’m ready to pull off the bandaid so to speak, and continue to do what I’ve been doing without the security of WW to fall back on. Plus, with $40 extra in my pocket every month…
I’m glad I had a good lunch to back me up after that… 🙂
Starting with a Sweet Potato, Beet, and Chickpea Salad…
In the mix:
- 1 baked sweet potato (3 pts)
- 1 cup roasted beets (0 pts)
- 1/4 cup diced red onion (0 pts)
- 1/2 cup chickpeas (1 pt)
- 1 tsp olive oil (1 pt)
- 2 tsp apple cider vinegar (0 pts)
- salt and peppa
With the last of the leftover Vegetable Barley Soup (1 pt)
Plus some raw green beans for crunch:
All together now:
SO good. I roasted the beets and sweet potato in the oven last night while I was out for my bike ride (very dangerous. don’t try this at home, kids) and then just chopped them up and combined them right before I was ready to eat. Beets stain EVERYTHING, so its best to keep them separate from everything else until you’re ready. Example one:
(Don’t mind the fact that I am in desperate need of a manicure).
But I love ‘em even so.
So what do you think? Am I crazy for quitting WW when I am so close to lifetime? Good decision? Bad decision?
Side note: I still plan to post point values when I can because I think its a good resource for people still following the plan and I love giving simple, healthy, low-point whole food meal ideas.