Friday, January 1, 2016

Maintenance blues...

Just a brief post to note that weighing in on my home scale first thing New Year's day morning, I'm nearly 10 pounds North of goal, which means I need to shed 8 pounds by Tuesday evening if I want another free month of WW.

We shall see if that's do-able -- some of it can be done with trickery (dehydration, clothing choices), but not all.

Part of the question will be how much of this weight is "real" and how much is water-weight from salty snacks over the past couple of days.

Regardless, it is incredible how easy it is to put on weight quickly. I've eaten some Christmas cookies, yes, and let myself slip on tracking for probably 5 days total, 3 of them without a scale to keep me honest in the morning (out of town). But on none of those days did I eat like I used to -- even when I felt "out of control" for my current habits, I was way more disciplined than I'd been before weight watchers. And yet... and yet...

Part of the slip in tracking for me was resentment of the new SmartPoints, which make Christmas cookies pretty absurdly expensive. There's something much worse about losing 30 points to a Christmas cookie binge than losing 15 or 20, and it does make me more inclined to just say to hell with it altogether. In this sense, it reminds me a bit of grading policies and the dreaded "0."

In grading, the 0 in the 100 point scale is like a super-punishment. I've always been puzzled by it: why should the difference between missing work and failing work (60 points) be so much larger than the difference between failing work and exceptional work (only 40 points) after all? More importantly still, if 0's stay fixed in a gradebook, as ours used to have to after work was missing for a week due to a misguided school policy, then you very quickly end up making it impossible for student to ever pass your class at all, which takes away all incentive they had to try in the first place. I worry the new SmartPoints may have precisely the same effect.

More likely, though, my drift northward is an entirely predictable result of the holiday season that would have happened with PPV, with SP, or without tracking at all. It's even more frightening to think what would have happened if I'd decided to stop caring at all over the holidays. If I put on nearly 10 pounds trying to limit sweets, making sure to get lots of veggies all day, and loading up on protein rather than sugar whenever I could, just imagine what I could have done if I'd really gotten into the holiday spirit altogether. Amazing once you've put the work into losing weight just how little it takes to slide back.


  1. Good luck with maintenance. I've been maintaining for about 5 years, and it takes continued diligence.

    I found your site while searching for a general calorie per SP estimate to use while traveling. Have you ever looked into figuring out a calorie per FitPoint estimate? Many assumed it was 70-80 calories per Activity Point under the old program. I'm estimating about 46 calories per FitPoint under the new program.

    1. Thanks -- so far still at goal.

      I've never bothered tracking FitPoints so I have no idea how they work out. Did you get to your estimate by comparing WW activity values w/ other calorie-per-hour sites?

  2. I've had my Garmin running watch linked to WW off an on and mapped out the FitPoints awarded with what Garmin shows as the calorie burn for the run. The problem with keeping the Garmin connected is that it double-counts all the steps taken during each run, so it awards points specially for the run but also as part of my daily step activity.

    I've always tracked and eaten FitPoints (and Activity Points before) directly related to intentional exercise, but I don't like tracking and using them for routine activity. So I've been trying to come up with a decent calorie-per-FitPoint calculation.

    Congrats on maintaining this year. Keep up the good work!

  3. I also lost 70 pounds on Weight Watchers...7 years ago. I maintained 10 pounds over goal for 6 years, but I rejoined WW a couple weeks ago because I'm now 20 pounds over goal. Like PatrickSF, I found your site in reviewing calorie estimates for smartpoints and fitpoints. As a runner, I've always traded in activity points for food, so the smartpoints have left me confused.

    For now, I'm just going with Garmin's estimate of how many calories I'm burning, dividing my 50 (close enough to Patrick's 48), to calculate my fitpoints.

    Here's why:
    When I track online a 4 mile run in 48 minutes, Garmin estimates 502 calories. With WW online, if I classify that intensity as "medium", I get 6 FP. If I classify the intensity as "high", I get 14. I'm guessing it's halfway in between.

    Good luck to all of us maintaining. I was never a runner before I lost all this weight, and it's such a gift. My real goal is to get back to being comfortable with the 10 minute mile again.

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