Vicky – Week 5 – What I’ve learned along the way

This past week, I stepped up the exercise. I made it to two classes at the gym, a yoga class, and ran twice with Lara. I’m thrilled that exercise is back in my life. I’m even MORE thrilled with the results – down 3 lbs!

So to everyone who says they don’t have time for exercise or they don’t like exercise, just TRY to get it in. A brisk walk in the evening, run up and down the stairs a few times, crunches while watching TV, anything to get yourself moving. It really, really makes a difference.

This week I want to share with you some valuable tips I learned from Weight Watchers over the 10 years or so that I’ve been a member (on and off). In no particular order:

1. Don’t eat off your kids’ plates.

Ok seriously, when I heard this at a WW meeting the first time, I didn’t have kids and I thought to myself I would NEVER do that. Wrong! How many times have I eaten the last few bites of something the kids left so it wouldn’t go to waste? It’s not worth it, all the extra calories add up! If there is a lot left, put it in a container and save it for the next day.

2. Watch the ‘invisible extras’

A spoonful of cookie dough while baking. A handful of goldfish crackers while serving some to the kids. A small square or brownie from the meeting leftovers. A mouthful of leftover lasagna from the fridge, as you serve it up on a plate. All of these little extras add up. You may not notice them through out the day, but add them up together and you have quite a few extra calories that are unaccounted for.

3. Not every meal out is a special occasion

It’s fun to go out and celebrate special occasions with a meal, and dessert. But not every meal out is a special occasion. Maybe you are away at a conference for work (ahem, Donna), or maybe you lost power and can’t cook dinner that night. Not every restaurant meal needs to have drinks, appetizers and dessert. If you really can’t resist, pick one that you enjoy the most. Side note – I was in New York state a couple of weekends ago and had dinner at Applebees. They have a selection of under 500 calorie meals, which I thought was fantastic!

4. Control your portions

Use a smaller plate if you have to, and server yourself vegetables or salad before you serve starches or meat. If you really want to get a sense of how portion sizes can increase, fill your plate with what you think is a cup of cooked pasta. Then measure out a cup of pasta and compare. I use a few tricks to keep portions in check – your thumb is about an ounce, the palm of your hand about 5oz of meat, your fist is about a cup.

5. Choose filling foods

Filling foods will help you stay satisfied longer and keep hunger at bay. Choose vegetables, fruit, lean meats, beans, dairy products, and eggs. Protein is a good choice because it is digested slowly, and makes you feel full for longer than carbohydrates or fats. Here is a list of filling foods that you may find useful.

6. Taste your food!

How many times have you scarfed down a meal, and not even realized what you just ate? If you have kids, you know what dinner time is like. It’s not easy to slow down and take the time to really taste your food. But by really enjoying a meal, putting your fork down between bites, and chewing properly, you’ll feel more satisfied and maybe less likely to go back for seconds.

What are some of your best tips for weight loss?

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7 Responses to Vicky – Week 5 – What I’ve learned along the way

  1. mamad123 says:

    my favourite tip is don’t eat something unless it’s the best. when I was at the most successful, I decided that only the fries at the Barley Mow in Old Ottawa South were the best, so I never ordered fries anywhere else. And since I don’t go to Barley Mow very often, I ate fries very rarely.

  2. Lara says:

    Invisible extras have always been an issue for me – but I always keep that term in my head… so I’m aware when I’m doing it and try to keep in check.

    Yay to the 3lb loss – that’s amazing!! And thanks for the useful tips!

  3. Shona says:

    Yay Vicky! 3 pounds is excellent! I find exercising really helps a lot too. I also bought myself a food scale and found that it helped to weigh my chicken/meat. The new digital ones are really nice and not that expensive (I got mine at the Bay).

  4. pinkcb says:

    A scale and several sets of measuring cups helps me (the one I want was always in the dishwasher, now I have 3 sets!). I’ve been doing this for over a year and I still measure my breakfast cereal every single morning.

    Congrats on the 3 pounds, that’s terrific.

  5. eisangel3 says:

    Find ways to combine leisure / hobbies / outings with friends with fitness. I LOVE to watch TV. So we have a treadmill and a PVR. I watch TV while I walk/run :) I love to swim, so I joined aquafit. I’m not sure if I’m ready to give up movies and nice restaurants for exercise yet :P

  6. Jen says:

    I recently gave some thought to the calories I take in by what I drink – especially in the fancy cocktail department. I blogged about it here:

    http://martinisforbreakfast.tumblr.com/post/1096721383/gandtdiet

    I find it a bit easy to get carried away when I’m out with the girls…I always find myself balancing good choices without feeling deprived of a good time. I proposed some ideas about how to tone down my choices a bit (especially if I can’t keep it to one cocktail). In doing my research, I also found this resource…just watch the serving sizes : )
    http://recipecircus.com/recipes/awsum34/TIDBITS—You-Need-To-Know/Beer.html

    Great blog!

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