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Considering joining WW - please advise...

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Old 07-16-2013, 01:11 PM   #1
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Default Considering joining WW - please advise...

Hello! I just want to see how great of a program you think WW is. I tried it for a short time a couple of years ago and did see some success. Then I quit, gained the weight back and have tried calorie counting. I guess I am wondering two big things:
1. Why is WW a better alternative to counting calories?
2. Do you think you can continue WW throughout your life? I am just worried I will be successful but then get so sick of counting points and gain back what I do lose.
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Old 07-16-2013, 01:37 PM   #2
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I tried counting calories off and on for years and I always gave up because it was just to dang time consuming. I am fairly new to WW but so far I really like it. The points are so much more convenient and straight forward than calorie counting. I have the points plus so I can track my points on my computer, iPad, and phone. I have the WW scanner I use at the grocery store.

I like that most of the fruits and veggies are free. That saves a lot of time that I don't have to measure and calculate the calories. Most of the foods that I eat every day (like the my sandwich for lunch) are figured out and saved so I just have to click and go.

I was also a member of TOPS and while I loved the people, the program content left much to be desired. I like the structure and format of the WW meetings. I always come out armed with knowledge and ready for a new week.

I say give it an honest try and see what happens. Good luck!!
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Old 07-16-2013, 02:35 PM   #3
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I've been on WW since January of 2012. I also count calories.

When I started my weight loss effort, WW was exactly what I needed. I had all kinds of junk in my attic about dieting and counting calories seemed overwhelming to me. I found the WW points system very easy to use and understand. I liked the wealth of information that is available on the WW site. I do online only. I'm not a meetings kind of person. But I've developed a small circle of good friends through my WW blog. Blogging really helps me to stay focused.

On the downside, I've been heartily disgusted more than once with website glitches. At one point it was so bad I almost cancelled my membership. But things there are improving although the site is still, IMO, not very user friendly and has more bugs than I like. I'm in Information Technology myself and some of the stuff I see on the WW site just drives me nuts! But still, I stay because I like points and I have my group of friends.

Having said that, I think that at some point I will give up WW and just stick to counting calories. I kind of think of WW as my training wheels that at some point, I'll get rid off. I use My Fitness Pal for counting calories. The web design at MFP is soooooo much better. It is simple and it doesn't tend to malfunction. It's also free. Bonus! However, MFP doesn't have the wealth of information that WW does and, well, I'll just say that I'm not comfortable interacting in their community. One reason is that the discussion boards over there don't have a last read function so when you try to follow a thread, you end up doing a LOT of manual scrolling. I'm also not comfortable with the level of snark that occurs there.
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Old 07-16-2013, 03:26 PM   #4
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I started with WW, then did WW and calorie counting together, and now I'm just doing calorie counting exclusively. There are pros and cons to both systems.

Weight Watchers is a solid diet system, and I know a lot of people who have lost weight and have been able to maintain that weight loss because of it. I still use a lot of the information I learned from Weight Watchers even though I'm only calorie counting now. I find Weight Watchers to be more "forgiving" of eating a little too much by including the 49 weekly points that you can use at your discretion. When I was doing Weight Watchers, I tried not to use those if possible, but found myself dipping into them on occasion.

One thing that I really liked when I first started Weight Watchers was that fruits and vegetables were "free" (up to a point...3-5 servings a day, then you should calculate and track the points). Going from eating about 2500-3000 calories a day to what I would guess to be about 1500 a day is a shock, and being able to eat a banana guilt-free to hold me over didn't make me feel like I was way off plan.

I was losing weight at an okay rate...about 1lb a week, give or take. But I would stall for several days, lose a few ounces, stall for several days, lose a few ounces, etc. It was frustrating to me, and I felt like I was doing something wrong.

That's when I added in calorie counting because I wanted to see how much I was eating. When I would eat all my points for the day, with maybe 3 servings of fruit/veggies (usually 2 servings of fruit and 1 serving of veggies), I was averaging about 1500-1750 calories a day. My deficit just wasn't enough, in my opinion, to lose weight steadily.

I used the two programs togetherfor about a week, then went to calorie counting (using MyFitnessPal) because I felt I needed a bit more structure to it. Not that Weight Watchers wasn't working, because it was...but because I wasn't seeing the results I knew I was capable of.

If you are a moderately active person, I would definitely say Weight Watchers is great because the extra activity you do can burn off the calories of the "free" fruits and veggies and you'll still be in a deficit enough to lose weght steadily. For me, I lead a very sedentary lifestyle, so I needed to restrict my calories further so I would still have that same deficit.

The great thing about both diet methods is that they are customizable. You don't have to restrict what you eat, just how much you eat. Weight Watchers gave me a great starting point by allowing me to feel comfortable with smaller portion sizes, changing my lifestyle and gave me the wiggle room I needed with both the weekly points and free fruits/veggies to help me stay on track. Once I got comfortable with that, I was able to structure it more to my own personal needs by going to calorie counting.
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Old 07-16-2013, 09:38 PM   #5
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I must say I agree with this. I am using weight watchers as a starting point for me. It's been a great tool for teaching me how to eat in moderation. Here in another week, I plan on adding more activity to my life which I believe will really help me succeed on the WW's plan.
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Old 07-17-2013, 01:46 PM   #6
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Thank for all the replies ladies!! I am ready to go!!! I look forward to looking to you for support and guidance!!
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Old 07-17-2013, 02:26 PM   #7
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I have been on WW for a long time, and although I have not gotten to goal, I consider myself "lifetime" because I will continue to do this for the rest of my life. As a person with a unique relationship with food (aren't we all?), the points system allows me to decide if a food is "worth it" to me based on more than just calories.
I have also found that, for me, attendance at meetings is essential. Sometimes I will get tips, sometimes support or a shoulder to whine on, and sometimes it's just a place to laugh about our ridiculous attitudes about food, exercise, or life in general. I don't think I would have been able to maintain a loss of over a hundred pounds through the last year of hormonal maelstrom and family loss without my meetings.
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Old 07-17-2013, 09:36 PM   #8
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WW was my first diet ever at age 12. I think that may be why I find it so much easier to relate to food in points instead of calories. However, I think both WW and calorie counting are great ways to lose weight. I've lost 70 lbs on WW previously. Unfortunately, I stopped following the program and gained it all back. I just re-joined this week. This is my first time having a smart phone while on WW and I think the apps make a huge difference. Previously, I had THREE books to look up points, plus a hand-held calculator; now all of that information is in my app. It makes it so much easier!

ETA- This time I'm doing WW online. I previously attended meetings. I think the value of meetings is 100% contingent on finding a group and leader that suits you. I had that in Atlanta, then I moved to Nashville. I tried several meetings and just never found that connection here. I do think meetings are worth checking into. If you find the right group, they are awesome!
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Old 09-13-2013, 04:34 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MamaJessica View Post
Hello! I just want to see how great of a program you think WW is. I tried it for a short time a couple of years ago and did see some success. Then I quit, gained the weight back and have tried calorie counting. I guess I am wondering two big things:
1. Why is WW a better alternative to counting calories?
2. Do you think you can continue WW throughout your life? I am just worried I will be successful but then get so sick of counting points and gain back what I do lose.
I love WW. I can't recommend it enough. WW is about giving you the skills to make healthy lifestyle choices and learning how to eat sensibly without depriving yourself. To answer you questions;

1. I find counting points much easier than counting calories and I've done both. You eventually get to know the points values of certain foods and the pocket tracker is handy for the ones you're not sure of.

2. WW gives you the skills to be able to maintain your weight loss throughout your life. They are there to fall back on if you do gain weight. Don't think of it as a diet, think of it as an education program for making changes to your eating habits. Many people have bad eating habits and just don't know how to eat any different. I have friends that proclaim to eat healthy and can't just seem to lose weight, but when you do the points calculations on what they are eating, their portions and the foods they claim as 'healthy' are full of fat and calories.

I find the major keys to WW are keeping a daily food diary and measuring and weighing oh and not depriving myself!

But in the end, you really need to find what works for you. Good luck with whatever you choose.
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Old 09-13-2013, 05:29 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Buffinlovin View Post
I started with WW, then did WW and calorie counting together, and now I'm just doing calorie counting exclusively. There are pros and cons to both systems.

Weight Watchers is a solid diet system, and I know a lot of people who have lost weight and have been able to maintain that weight loss because of it. I still use a lot of the information I learned from Weight Watchers even though I'm only calorie counting now. I find Weight Watchers to be more "forgiving" of eating a little too much by including the 49 weekly points that you can use at your discretion. When I was doing Weight Watchers, I tried not to use those if possible, but found myself dipping into them on occasion.

One thing that I really liked when I first started Weight Watchers was that fruits and vegetables were "free" (up to a point...3-5 servings a day, then you should calculate and track the points). Going from eating about 2500-3000 calories a day to what I would guess to be about 1500 a day is a shock, and being able to eat a banana guilt-free to hold me over didn't make me feel like I was way off plan.

I was losing weight at an okay rate...about 1lb a week, give or take. But I would stall for several days, lose a few ounces, stall for several days, lose a few ounces, etc. It was frustrating to me, and I felt like I was doing something wrong.

That's when I added in calorie counting because I wanted to see how much I was eating. When I would eat all my points for the day, with maybe 3 servings of fruit/veggies (usually 2 servings of fruit and 1 serving of veggies), I was averaging about 1500-1750 calories a day. My deficit just wasn't enough, in my opinion, to lose weight steadily.

I used the two programs togetherfor about a week, then went to calorie counting (using MyFitnessPal) because I felt I needed a bit more structure to it. Not that Weight Watchers wasn't working, because it was...but because I wasn't seeing the results I knew I was capable of.

If you are a moderately active person, I would definitely say Weight Watchers is great because the extra activity you do can burn off the calories of the "free" fruits and veggies and you'll still be in a deficit enough to lose weght steadily. For me, I lead a very sedentary lifestyle, so I needed to restrict my calories further so I would still have that same deficit.

The great thing about both diet methods is that they are customizable. You don't have to restrict what you eat, just how much you eat. Weight Watchers gave me a great starting point by allowing me to feel comfortable with smaller portion sizes, changing my lifestyle and gave me the wiggle room I needed with both the weekly points and free fruits/veggies to help me stay on track. Once I got comfortable with that, I was able to structure it more to my own personal needs by going to calorie counting.
I also lead a sedentary lifestyle and am on WW but have lost a lot of weight with it and continue to do so. I guess everyone is different! I get about 1100-1200 calories a day on a 26 point diet..and thats eating a lot of veggies and 2-3 servings of fruits!
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Old 09-19-2013, 06:17 PM   #11
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1. Why is WW a better alternative to counting calories?
I have done both and both work. I think that weight watchers holds me more accountable for how much food I put in my body.

2. Do you think you can continue WW throughout your life?
I think that it can be done, though I didn't and gained back over half. Life happens. I'm having to take it as a lesson learned and be serious about maintenance.
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