Eating Smarter (Not Harder?)

I had written this a few weeks ago, with the intention of including it in a November Weigh-In post:

I’m tired of thinking about food all the time.

I’m tired of planning and tracking and adjusting and making it work. I’m tired of beating myself up over poor food decisions made at the wrong time. I’m tired of re-figuring how many pounds I’m going to need to lose next week to get back on track to reach my weight goal.

I’m tired of it… but that doesn’t mean I’m giving up.

That just means I need to make more decisions ahead of time, so I don’t have to think about it so much.

Little did I know that WeightWatchers would be forcing my hand on the matter.

Today — since today was my weigh-in day — I started the new Beyond the Scale program with WeightWatchers. Where the PointsPlus system calculated a value for each food based on Fat, Fiber, Carbs, and Protein, the new SmartPoints are calculated based on Calories, Saturated Fat, Sugar, and Protein. (It’s not like I’m breaking any non-disclosure agreements by sharing that much info — I read that much info in some Oprah article online.)

What does that mean? It means that the comfortable food-groove I’ve been in for the past five years or so is being shaken up, and I no longer automatically know how many Points my favorite foods will cost me. Some are now more, and some are less.

The idea is to encourage healthy eating. The few sweet indulgences I had will be even fewer, now that sugar is part of the calculation, and fiber can no longer offset a high carb count. I’ll probably be eating more protein, though — my husband and I had practically gone vegetarian, since meat was more “expensive” than veggies.

My prior goal for the holidays, once I resigned myself to the fact that I wouldn’t hit Goal-with-a-Capital-G by the holidays, was to maintain my weight. I have done that: once I decided that I was going to hold steady through the end of the year, I haven’t weighed in above that weight. I’ve even been recording my daily weight in a Google Spreadsheet, where I have a forecast function predicting where my weight is trending, and I make sure to adjust if I see that trendline creeping up above my hold-steady weight.

My new goal for the holidays is to master this new program. I suspect that the act of familiarizing myself with all the new meal combinations and possibilities, shaking up the status quo, will be enough to keep me in line from a weight standpoint.

I’m actually pretty happy with the weight I am right now. I’m healthy and relatively fit. I just want to see what that last 10 or 15 pound difference will look feel like.

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