I was late to my weigh-in today because my daughter had a dentist appointment first, so I was standing in line waiting for my turn at the scale during most of the meeting and could listen in. I’m not sure what the exact meeting topic was, but the discussion turned to tracking. The leader admitted that she found it hard to track on weekends. When she asked for a show of hands, about two-thirds of the meeting attendees admitted to not tracking points all the time.
My jaw dropped. It was like a light bulb went off for me. Tracking/journaling has been so key to both my original weightloss and my newer journey back to goal. So many people are quick to complain that Weight Watchers doesn’t work for them – but if they are not tracking everything they eat consistently, day in and day out, then they are not really following the plan as written. How then can they be surprised or disappointed when it doesn’t work for them or they don’t lose as fast??!
I was something of a legend in my group of Weight Watcher friends at the time, because I journaled EVERY SINGLE DAY for almost 7 years, from April 2000 to late 2006. I have over 2000 days’ worth of paper journals stored in a box in my basement. I journaled through my initial loss of 90 lbs; maintaining for 2.5 years; my pregnancy with my son, during which I gained 35 lbs; losing that baby weight again; and maintaining within 5-10 lbs of my goal weight for another 2 years. My husband finds it hysterical that I journaled the day I gave birth to Jonathan, listing “ice chips” and counting them as a liquid serving! LOL 😉 I admit, that was possibly a little over the top – but the point is, I was dedicated. 🙂
I only stopped journaling when I was pregnant with my daughter – and to be honest, with hindsight I can see that that decision was the beginning of my steady return to my starting weight. I used my final pregnancy as an excuse to eat everything I felt had been off limits for the previous few years. I gained 50 lbs, made a half-hearted attempted to lose it but only succeeded in shifting about half of it. Then, due primarily to my struggle with the balancing act of 2 kids & 2 jobs, I gained back the other 65lbs – 40 of that in just 14 months, when I was working a sedentary second job with a stressful commute.
Now that I’m recommitted to reaching my goal again, I can see that tracking is really a crucial element in staying honest on this journey. The medium may have changed (I now track online or on my phone rather than in a paper journal) – but the commitment and the benefits are the same.
Finally, for the stats – I lost 1.2 lbs at today’s weigh-in, for a total of 26.2 lbs in 9 weeks, or 11.15% of my starting weight. 🙂