Okay, time for me to come out of the closet. My latest craze has been…

Weight Watchers.

I’ve been trying to lose 10 pounds off and on for about ten years. Because I was thin and so active when I was younger, I never developed a sense of portion control or even, any sense of restriction towards eating, which has made losing even a few pounds very difficult. In fact, I would consider eating one of my favorite hobbies: my friend has dubbed it “sport eating.”

Still, I feel that normally I eat pretty well, i.e. fast food in moderation, five veggies a day etc. I usually just amp the veggies when I think I need to lose a pound or two. Then, a few weeks ago, I heard a few teachers at lunch talk animatedly about Weight Watcher Flex points. These guys were old pros, and one woman had lost 25 pounds on this system. It turns out that if you eat 20 points a day (if you weigh between 100-150 pounds) that you will lose 2-3 pounds a week. Out of curiosity, I began to keep track of my points.

Real eye-opener. I was consuming, on a regular basis, 33-40 points a day. Well, no wonder my pants just keep getting tighter. For two weeks I just observed my points and very casually tried to reduce how much I was eating. Sheesh, hard! On the other hand, if this system works, it will only take five weeks to lose ten pounds, and then it’ll just be maintainance. Plus, solid running for 1/2 hour earns me three more points.

Points make sense to me. Almost all veggies are ZERO points. Most fruits (except bananas=2) are 1 point. Everything else can be calculated with an online calculator, like one at the alexnolan site in my blogroll (see my follow-up post). You need (per serving): the calories, grams of fat, and grams of dietary fiber. At my house we are starting to write (in sharpie) how many points things are worth directly on the package. My kid thinks it’s funny, but doesn’t have much to worry about after 3 hours of swim practice (she gets something like 12 extra points for that!)

This system also explained why my boyfriend was always seeing much more dramatic results than me, when we were on the same regime. He needs 24 points a day for the same weight loss AND when he runs for 1/2 hour it counts as 4 points.

Which brings me to our own version of Weight Watcher meetings. He and I are in a race to see who consumes fewer points this week; the loser buys the winner a $100 gift of choice. I am losing right now (two meals out and ice cream in palm springs) but I plan on eating only vegetables for the next couple days. I really want my very own Makita drill.

See below for a zero point recipe.

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