but i'm not.
i threw three months and $70 at it. i lost 3 pounds. but i'm not sure that i agree with the method by which i lost those three pounds.
let's start with the positives: weight watchers really does a great job of teaching you portion control. and they do encourage you to eat fruits and vegetables. but they don't do this while touting all the benefits of eating nutrient-dense and whole foods - they do it under the mantra of "it'll fill you up!". so that's the only purpose of eating lots of vegetables and fruits? so that i hopefully won't eat an entire bag of cool ranch doritos? i think they're may be a bigger issue here if that's their mantra for success...
in my very humble and only slightly educated opinion, weight watchers seems to advocate for eating foods that i have an ethical and philosophical problem with eating. they encourage you to eat things labeled as 'fat free', 'light' and 'low fat'. but the problem is that in order to label a food as fat free, light and low fat, you have to strip the original food of so many of it's nutrients whilst simultaneously injecting said food with chemicals to convince your tastebuds that what you're eating is real food, that your food isn't food anymore. this modified non-food no longer resembles in any fashion what it once was.
with weight watchers, when you choose fat free, light and low fat options, they 'reward' you with a lower point value than their full-fat counterparts. but at the same time, you're injesting maltodextrin, aspartame, high amounts of modified food starch and a handful of other scary ingredients. so go ahead and wriggle thyself into those size 4 skinny jeans. just know that your body is rotting from the inside out with all those chemicals from the fat-free cool whip, cartons of egg whites, "skinny cow" ice cream treats, margarine, light cheese and skim milk.
weight watchers isn't all bad. it works for a lot of people. but i hated being encouraged to swap melted plastic (read: margarine) for butter. real, actual butter. want to know what's in butter? cream and maybe salt. the end. want to know what's in margarine? partially hyrdogenated oils (read: trans fats), plant stanol esters, salt, various emulsifiers, potassium sorbate, citric acid and calcium disodium EDTA to "preserve freshness", artificial flavor, DL-alpha-tocopheryl acetate, vitamin A palmitate and artificial coloring.
maragarine is not a real food. should you eat it? NO! butter is a real food. should you eat it? YES! but should you eat an entire stick of butter in one sitting? f*ck no. and here's where my food philosophy is landing, and how i've lost 20 lbs since last july.
if it's a real food, eat it. if it has a short ingredient list, or no ingredient list at all (fruits and vegetables), eat it. if the ingredient list gets beyond 5 ingredients and you can't pronounce half of them, don't eat it. now, this does get tricky when it comes to things like full-fat (normal) cheese and dairy. these are real foods that have a short ingredient list, and yet they will make your ass lumpy and large if you eat them by the truckload. so get this - you aren't supposed to! no one is. if you learn to tune into your body, to what you need and what you truly want, you will find that 1 oz of real cheese or 1 Tablespoon of real butter is more than enough to satiate and flavor just about anything. personally, i've tried light ice cream and skinny cow ice cream treats. they're gross. when you're done eating, you feel like you licked the inside of a whitewall tire. try having 1/2 a cup of real ice cream or gelato sometime and see what that does for you.
my other problem with weight watchers is that, in the words of the badger (my husband), i am becoming an athlete. i am in the midst of training for my first half marathon and am loving where my legs can take me these days. most people that jump into half and full marathon training say that they are ravenously hungry all the time and that they gain weight during their training. i've tried really, really hard to fight this and stick with my weight watchers points and healthy eating while logging about 20 miles per week. out of sheer curiosity, i used an online calorie calculator to input everything i ate each day for the past week on weight watchers, and also accounted for all of the running i've been doing. according to that online calculator which accounted for calories consumed and calories burned, i have been, quite literally, starving myself with a net calorie intake of about 400-500 calories per day.
holy. f*cking. balls. i think it's pretty obvy to see that this is not the way to go about training for a half marathon, or to lose weight. with a net calorie intake of ~500 per day, i'm pretty sure that my metablolism has stalled to a grinding halt. i want to be strong and a little bit thinner. not emaciated, weak and tired.
in conclusion, i'm going to continue down my path of running often, eating reasonable amounts of whole, real and alarmingly delicious foods and move on with my life, post-weight watchers.