February 2012’s Monthly Weight Loss Update

As of last Sunday (February 5th, 2012), I’ve officially been on Weight Watcher’s program for a little over a month. Here is a summary of the results obtained so far, and a few considerations.

Date Daily PP Weekly PP Weekly +/- Total +/-
Jan 8 58 0 -1 lbs -1 lbs
Jan 15 54 0 -4 lbs -5 lbs
Jan 22 56 0 +1 lbs -4 lbs
Jan 29 57 49 +0.4 lbs -3.6 lbs
Feb 5 50 0 -3.4 lbs -7 lbs

The first column indicates the date of the weigh in (so the end of the week), the second the average amount of points I ate per day, the third the amount of weekly allowance points I ate, and the last two columns the weight change, respective to the previous week and the initial weight.

All in all, I lost 7 pounds in the first month. Not a huge amount for a big guy like me, but it’s a promising start. In addition to shedding a few pounds, I found other positive side effects due to my dietary overhaul.

My blood pressure went from a scary 159/105 to a reassuring 113/73. My heart rate from 105 at rest to 84. I also find it easier to sleep, I don’t get heart burn, or chest pressure like I used to. So on top of what the scale says, the effort seem to be already paying off.

As mentioned before, I’m counting fruit as a regular food (so not zero PlusPoints like Weight Watchers suggests). It’s also worth noting that for the first two weeks my target daily points were 59, but then they became 58 from week three because I lost my first 5 pounds and the point allotment depends on your weight.

There is clearly more to weight loss than just calories in and calories out (or PointsPlus in if you will). 58 points of insulin stimulating sweet chocolate are not the same as 58 points of lean meats and other healthy foods within the context of a nutritionally sound diet, as far as weight loss is concerned.

Nevertheless, consider that I opted for a balanced diet with a few treats here and there pretty much consistently for the past five weeks. So we can safely say that the points I ate are somewhat inversely proportional to my weight loss, without worrying too much about other variables such as the type of foods I ate (for the sake of simplicity).

In particular, I believe that if I were to eat my target points consistently, due to my lifestyle and metabolism I would not lose weight or do so at an extremely slow pace. And this of course excludes using extra weekly points, as well.

I know Weight Watchers is not fond of people eating fewer points that they are allotted, but for my body and somewhat sedentary lifestyle eating 58 points a day will not get me anywhere. Countless people are struggling to lose weight on Weight Watchers PointsPlus, so I know I’m not alone in feeling that too many points may have been allocated for a steady weight loss.

Based on my experience over the past five weeks, from now on I’ll consider the target points (i.e., currently 58) as the upper limit of what I can eat per day, and shoot for leaving a few points behind each day if possible. I’ll report back each month to see if this approach works out and is sustainable.

Speaking of sedentary lifestyle, packing boxes at night is quite the workout and I do plan to be more active now that I’m moving to beautiful B.C. in two weeks. I’ll start by taking walks and doing more outdoor actives. Diet alone won’t make me healthy, but it’s a significant factor that can only be aided by a more active lifestyle. For now I need to focus on getting rid of this nasty flu and using my free time to get everything ready for the big move.

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