Part I: Nutrition
I’ve joined Weight Watchers before, following the flex plan where foods are allotted a certain number of points per a copyright-protected formula, and you have a certain number of points a day to use. It’s a great program and I did experience a moderate amount of success on it before I lost momentum. I’m not a current Weight Watchers member but I’m using information I received when I was a member, and am now following the old Core program. It’s since been replaced by the Simply Filling program, which to my knowledge is very similar.
What I like about Core is the emphasis on healthy eating. There is an enormous list of foods that you do not have to count and can eat to satisfaction, primarily fruits, vegetables, lean meats, some fat-free dairy products and whole grains. The freedom from weighing, measuring and counting is an attractive component of the program. On Core I’ve explored new-to-me grains such as quinoa and steel-cut oats. I was already a fan of bulgur and the grain-like couscous, which are now staples in my diet due to the ease of preparation and their inclusion on the list of Core foods. Core also provides a weekly point allowance to use for non-Core foods, for example tortillas, breads, and of course chocolate!
A key element of Core is the hunger rating. You are advised to rate your hunger before and after you eat, and whenever you are considering eating. The goal is to eat when you are hungry and stop when you are satisfied…. Not stuffed, just sated.
Some of my staples on Core are homemade smoothies with frozen bananas, fat-free yogurt and whatever fruit is handy; bean salads; baked chicken that I cut in strips/chunks to toss with salads, whole wheat pasta or a grain; the afore-mentioned whole wheat pasta; fruit fruit fruit and veggies veggies veggies. I drink 2 liters of water a day; I can go through one liter alone while at the gym. I’m thinking about increasing it to 3 liters a day to see if that makes a difference.
Some of the things I regularly spend my weekly allotment of points on are PB2, a fat-free powdered peanut butter that you HAVE to try if you haven’t already; agave nectar which has a lower glycemic index than sugar and a wonderful, smoky, maple-like taste; and Monster’s Moca Loca coffee-flavored energy drink which is fab but a whole 4 points and of course, energy drinks are not good for ya. But I have to say I have my best workouts when I drink a Moca Loca on my way to the gym!
I’m still struggling with staying on the program, or OP as the Weight Watcher crowd calls it. I make it to mid-afternoon or dinner-time with ease, but then I hit a wall. Part of the wall is bf’s desire for take-out, combined with my ongoing challenge of commitment. Two days ago I resisted a Wendy’s run, and to my surprise I survived… no passing out, no headache or crankiness, in fact I felt great. Probably because I felt so good about myself for dining on whole wheat penne and chicken with a side of baby carrots, followed by a small home-made strawberry banana smoothie for dessert. Knowing I’m making the right choices in health and nutrition is invigorating and empowering. I’m going to hold onto that feeling today, and concentrate on it when I hit that dinner-time wall. Wish me luck!
Now I’m off to make a smoothie, finish my coffee and type up some reports for work. Have a fab day!