How I Lost 86 Pounds In 11 Months With WW
Hi! Tell us about yourself…why did you decide to start losing weight?
Hey! My name is Lauren and began Weight Watchers in February of 2020. A friend recommended WW to me. I honestly did not think it would work and was reluctant to begin but felt like I HAD to do something. I had become very unhealthy over the years. I was eating fast food almost every meal, rarely cooking, drinking only Coke, and had little to no physical activity. I had difficulty sleeping, my stomach was always upset, and I had no energy at all times. My lab results also started to dramatically decline. I actually avoided going to my primary care physician in 2019 because I was scared of how much more my labs had declined since 2018. I felt like I I didn’t have anything to lose by trying WW as doing nothing was getting me nowhere.
My motivation was becoming healthier for myself and my family. I wanted my confidence and joy for life back. I have always loved clothes and hair and I found myself dressing in t-shirts and wearing my hair up in a bun every day. That just was not Lauren and a change needed to be made. The big moment that really gave me the motivation to start losing weight was seeing myself in family pictures that were very important to me. I knew I needed to get to a point where I loved myself again and WW was just what I needed.
What was your workout routine? Can you give us what a typical week looked like for you working out?
I had a different approach when it came to exercise. I knew that I needed to get my nutrition handled before I introduced exercise. I was fortunate to lose all of the 86 pounds without exercise. As important as exercise is it was more important for me to create a healthy relationship with food first.
I began exercising in January of 2021. I once dreaded exercising and now I actually look forward to it. I believe this is because I now have good nutrition that fuels my body with the energy that I need to work out. This has caused my family to express interest in working out as well. I am currently working out 3-4 times per week for 30-60 minutes. I am using Apple Fitness+ and FitOn, along with some YouTube videos. I am primarily doing strength, core, and HIIT classes.
What was your nutrition like? Can you give us what a typical day of eating looked like?
Weight Watchers truly has been a lifestyle change for me rather than a “diet”. You can eat anything which makes it very sustainable. I am very strict with staying within my points but enjoy all the foods that I eat. I pre-plan all of my meals in advance so that it makes the busy days easier. Each Saturday I sit down and come up with a menu for the week and then use that menu to grocery shop on Sunday. I have everything pre-logged for the entire week.
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I have a unique approach to WW. I always have a 0 point breakfast which is a fruit. I have a high point dinner that is family-friendly and then uses my remaining points for lunch. I feel like dinner is an important meal to have with your family and I also want to enjoy it so this method has worked great for me. I do not deny myself the foods that I love but rather plan for them so that I can stay within my points.
To stay within your points on WW, you naturally increase your fruit and vegetable intake. This is something that I love about the program. It has transformed the way I look at food now and I make much better and wiser choices both for myself and my family.
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How did you stay motivated to lose weight? Did you ever slip up?
With every pound, I lost I gained confidence. The confidence and joy this brought me kept me motivated. I also began helping others on their weight loss journey. This has been a huge motivation for me. I love helping my family, friends, and strangers see how wonderful WW is and start on their journey to health.
The most important advice I can give is to not make WW a diet. If you want a cupcake…have one! Just do not eat 3 and ALWAYS TRACK IT. If you want ice cream…have it! If you want Mexican or Japanese…have it! Just stay within your points and do not do this every day. You will naturally have to increase your fruits and veggies to stay on track and stay within your points. I also highly recommend 0 point drinks. I drink only water but you have several options that are 0 points.
Another bit of advice is to make sure you look at the bigger weight loss picture. A 1-2 pound loss per week may not seem like enough to you but if you think about it in the long term it adds up very quickly. 1-2 pounds becomes 4-8 pounds in a month which becomes 48-96 pounds in a year.
When did you start to notice progress?
I have been very fortunate that I have steadily lost weight over the months. The first week I lost weight and that was enough to motivate me and I never looked back.
February: 8.1 lbs, March: 12.6 lbs, April: 10.6 lbs, May: 9.6 lbs, June: 7.7 lbs, July: 7.1 lbs, August: 7.7 lbs, September: 8.7 lbs, October: 3.4 lbs, November: 3.1 lbs, December: 6.4 lbs for a total of 85 lbs in 2020. I have since lost a little more bringing me to 86 pounds.
Here are some stats I’ve tracked:
Weight 233 to 147.0
BMI 37.6 Obese to 23.9 Normal
Size 16/18 Pants Size to 4/5/6
Size 1X/2X Shirts Size to S
Did you use any sort of trackers/apps/scales to track your progress?
I use the Weight Watchers app to track my food, water, and fitness. The weight watchers app is AMAZING! Once you type in your height, current weight, desired weight, etc. it will assign you to a plan and give you an allotted amount of points. They have 3 plans. Green=100 free food items and the most points. Blue=200 free food items and middle range of points. Purple=300 free items and the least amount of points. I personally recommend the BLUE plan because it is the easiest to follow because chicken, eggs, fruits, and veggies are free and it is the closest to the old traditional weight watchers plan.
If you are assigned to another plan you can go in the app to your “food settings” and change your plan to blue. If that does not work you can go to the chat function on the app and a customer service representative can do it for you. You can scan barcodes of food items to get points, look up food items, look up restaurants, and even build recipes to calculate how many points a serving is of a homemade recipe is.
Do you have any weight loss “hacks” or “secrets” that helped you succeed?
Like I mentioned before my best advice is to not make WW a diet so that it remains sustainable. I feel like so often people think they have to eat only salads or bland food to lose weight and this is not true. I eat amazing food every day. I have no desire to ever stop WW because it is not restricting and I don’t feel like I am missing out on anything.
A common time that people slip up on diets is during the holidays. I have found that if I pre-plan that I can stay on track. For large family meals, I will ask my family what we are having and then I go ahead and figure out the quantities that I will eat and put them into the app. I bring my measuring cups and spoons and have an amazing meal, just like everyone else, but within my points.
Do you have any fitness books/podcasts/websites that you’d recommend and why?
I recommend Apple Fitness+ if you have an Apple Watch. It shows your heart rate from your watch right on the screen and integrates flawlessly with WW. It will automatically log your steps and the fitness classes that you did, as well as give you fitness points.
I also recommend FitOn. They have some of the exercises directly on the WW app or you can login to the website and access them for free. This also integrates with an apple watch and the WW app.
What is your best advice to beginners who are looking to lose weight?
You can do this! I never in a million years thought I would be where I am today. I have the confidence in you that you can accomplish anything you put your heart to and I encourage you to give Weight Watchers a try.
Where can we find more about you?
I started a Facebook group where I post-meal plans, recipes, and offer support. This has been one of my greatest accomplishments on this journey as I have been able to help people see my unique approach to WW.
I also have an Instagram where I share this same information!
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