Review of Yesterday's Progress
Daily Points Left: 32 of 71 (Goal: 15)
Weekly Points Left: 49 of 49 (Goal: 49)
Meetings Attended: Overeaters Anonymous
Exercise Completed: None Scheduled
WARNING: Long entry because it was written over the course of most of a day.
Before introducing my food selection, I will provide an introduction to the point system I am using. In Weight Watchers terminology, the point system is called PPV (Points Plus Value). The Weight Watchers 360 Degree program has much to offer outside of the point system. More on that at a later date. But at it's core, calories are tracked by using the PPV method. Fats, Carbohydrates, Fiber, and Protein work as input for a formula that computes the number of points for the food. I have been tempted to decipher that formula, but haven't as of yet. Every point consumed is subtracted from my daily total, if there's enough, or the weekly point still available. I have 71 points available to me every day. That was determined by my weight and gender. Everyone has 49 points available for the week. To determine the number of points, I have four tools at my disposal: A Pocket Guide that you receive when signing up, a PPV Calculator that I've purchased, an App I've installed on my phone that only calculates PPV, and eTools. I don't get on eTools very often. I am trying to change that.
As part of changing my health, I track everything I eat in a paper tracker that Weight Watchers makes available. In it, I start an entry by listing the food. If I use the Pocket Guide, I list the serving size, the page number, and the number of points. If I calculate the points, I list the serving size and then the fat, carb, fiber, and protein in the format fat g/carb g/fiber g/protein g. After the source of the point information, I list the amount of that food I actually consumed. Then I enter the point value and keep a running balance by subtracting out the point value for that entry. I also track the sodium intake for the dash diet concerns. I want to keep the sodium below 1500 mg, preferably below 1200 mg. And I will start tracking next week the carbohydrates for the Kimkins concerns. I want to keep the carbohydrates below 40 g, preferably below 20 g.
So, with that information, let's look into yesterday's food selection and point calculations.
First meal (4 pts): 1/4 cup scrambled egg substitutes with three turkey sausage links
This one isn't hard to select because I have it every day. According to the Weight Watcher's Pocket Guide, egg substitutes are 1 points for 1/4 cup. I list it in my paper tracker as 1/4c, pg 20, 1. I ate a 1/4 cup. This is one point. The nutrition label on the turkey sausage shows that 3 links = 7 g fat / 1 g carb / 0 g fiber / 12 g protein. I list this in my paper tracker as 7/1/0/12. I ate 3 links. This calculate out to 3 points. So this meal is a total of 4 points. I frequently include onions in the meal, but time wasn't with me this morning. I originally chose a 1/2 cup of the egg substitutes, but Iguana volunteered to make my breakfast. He chose a 1/4 cup, so I ate a 1/4 cup. He did a very good job in make a yummy meal for his Daddy. Thanks, Buddy!Second Meal (7 pts): 2 eggs with thee turkey sausage links
I regained my appetite rather quickly today. My stomach may be adjusting to the diet. Since it was still quite early, I made a second breakfast of two eggs, not the substitute, and 3 more links of turkey sausage. Each egg lists as 2 points. Granted, the entry in the Pocket Guide is for large or jumbo eggs. Our eggs are medium. I just go with it. This makes the eggs worth 4 points and the sausage, as calculated previously, 3 points. This added 7 points to my day.Third Meal (5 pts): Roast beef (4 oz), cooked onions (1/2 cup), cauliflower (1/2 cup), yogurt (1 container)
I went for easy on this one. There was some left over beef and onions. I could have wished for more. There was very little meat there, so I called it 2 oz. I may have guessed low, but since I typically have points left over every day, it's okay to guess low, or even to guess high. The beef is 3 points per 2 oz. I recorded 3 points. The onions are zero points, but I need to be concerned with the carbohydrates. Onions are less than 10% carbohydrates by weight. I can load up my plate a little with these. Once I find my food scale, I'll be sure to get to weighing the onions so I can count the carbs. For the time being, I'm generous in my cooking with them to leave left over onions for me. The meal also had cauliflower. This is also zero points. Cauliflower is about 5% carbohydrates by weight. Again, need the food scale located to help me out. To round out the meal, I added yogurt. I buy CarbMaster brand from Fred Meyers. The nutrition numbers are 1 container = 1.5 / 4 / 0 / 8. The calculates out to 2 points. This meal is a total of 5 points.Fourth Meal (2 pts): Snacking on pizza toppings - sausage, Canadian bacon, and pepperoni
This entry was to catch up on my snacking. There was left over pizza that was left out on the counter after lunch. I nibbled off the sausage, Canadian bacon, and pepperoni off the last 4 pieces. This served to get the pizza out of the fridge and into the trash. Wasteful, to be sure, but a necessary part of preparing room for the left overs from dinner. With as much acorn squash as we are cooking, there will be left overs. For this entry in my tracker, I entered BLTN as the food. BLTN stands for Bites, Licks, Tastes, Nibbles. I was introduced to this idea at Weight Watchers as BLT, but I added the N because a BLT is a Bacon, Lettuce, and Tomato and always will be to me. I typically use 1 point for BLTN, but because the sausage and pepperoni are high fat items, I entered 2 points. Given that I only ate 8 sausage crumbles, 4 pieces of pepperoni, and 2 pieces of Canadian bacon, I suspect 1 point would have covered it. But I have points to spare. This snacking added 2 points to my tracking. At this stage, it is about 3:30 pm in the afternoon and I have 53 points remaining. More on this below.Fifth Meal (11 pts): Beef pastrami with provolone and tomatoes
Wanting to up the point (and calorie) count a little, I heated up two layers each with two pieces of beef pastrami topped with a slice of provolone. That was nuked and then topped with four slices of tomatoes. The original plan for dinner was to eat tilapia, but it was getting close to time to leave for my OA meeting. Plus, the fish was supposed to be a part of the family meal. Since the family meal had been simplified in the interest of reducing complications to chicken patties as the protein, I chose to wait on the tilpaia. Four slices at 2 points each according to the guide makes it 8 points for the meat. I think that's low, but I went with it. The cheese is a treat at 3 points. The tomatoes are zero points. Tomatoes are another vegetable low in carbohydrates with about 4% carbohydrates by weight. The total for this meal is 11 points. This creates a balance of 42 points.Sixth Meal (10 pts): Burger patty and veggies from a Jumbo Jack
This one was rather a treat I gave myself. I can't really afford the money. But I can afford the points. As near as I can decipher, the Jumbo Jack without the bun is somewhere around 6 - 8 points. As it is late, I am going to call it 10 and head to bed. That leaves me 32 points left over for the day.I'm not usually at 53 points by the early afternoon. And that bothered me. I need to be losing weight. And I want to lose it a little faster than 2 pounds per week. But it's a balancing act between losing weight at a not-too-unhealthy rate and getting out of unhealthy weight range quickly that I am in now. I am using the BMI as a measure of my health in terms of weight. According to various entries at the National Institute of Health, the break down of BMI puts me at Extremely Obese or Morbidly Obese. Both of these terms are extremely scary. First of all, the next categories in order as I lose weight are: Obesity-Stage II or Severely Obese, Obesity-Stage I or Obese, Overweight, and Normal. That is quite a few steps. The second scary aspect is that the worst category starts at 40.0 on the BMI scale and my BMI calculates to 68.4. These motivational factors help me focus on another source of information on losing weight. There is additional information I want to read at the NIH website: Aim for a Healthy Weight so I can hopefully learn more. As well, as weight and BMI, I am also going to add in my waist measurements as a number to track. The problem is that the move has confiscated the tape measure MBWM purchased for me for this purpose. In the mean time, I am keeping track of the number of available holes on my belt. Right now, I am at 8 available holes.
Food is available almost all of the time. And I do try to eat throughout the day, borrowing the six meal idea from Body for Life. The idea is to eat more frequent meals that are much smaller. It has been easy to keep meals small when constipation is making life miserable. I feel queasy from the constipation. Thus, eating small is easy. I am combating the constipation with a single half dose of a generic brand of propylene glycol (AKA: MiraLax). I want to see how I react before taking the medicine with either greater frequency or larger doses. These and other complications arise with the weight loss and the exercise. I will survive, but I may need a little un-crumpling when I get to my destination.
Part of getting to that destination is attending Overeaters Anonymous. I did attend last night. And if I attend tomorrow's aquatics class, which I am completely planning on doing, and track everything I eat, I will have hit 100% of my planned events. Tonight's OA meeting was interesting in that three BSU nursing students attended to learn more about 12 Step support programs. I didn't brag about ITT's nursing program, although I was tempted after the meeting broke up. The meeting centered on the first of the 12 Steps, "We admitted we were powerless over food - that our lives had become unmanageable." The theme was what life was like before starting to turn our life around, the event(s) that turned us around, and what life was like now. When I was invited to speak, I explained that my father is an alcoholic. I started in the 12 Step program Alateen back in high school. In college, I graduated to Al-anon. During that year, my father left my mother. My parents sent me to a counselor for assistance in dealing with the issues associated with divorce. One evening, I went to a new time slot for an Al-anon meeting. My counselor was there. He suggested that OA was more appropriate for me than Al-anon. There was even one going on that night right across the hall. He said that since he and I were at the same meeting, he couldn't be my counselor anymore. I went straightaway across the hall in the hopes of keeping him as my counselor. No such good fortune. I kept attended OA because I realized that I had made some strange decisions when it came to food. Decisions that might have been considered alcoholism if it has been alcohol instead of food. Which is really what OA revolves around, in my opinion, replacing alcohol with food and alcoholism with food addiction in the alcoholics anonymous literature and building up your broken life from there by turning your will over to God as you understand Him.
What I am working through with my God as I understand Him is the fact that I am rather stuck back at Step 1. As you keep reading this paragraph, the fact that I have taken up residence in Step 1 will become even more apparent. Although I have a spiritual excitement that comes from being ready to be involved in Step 2 and Step 3. I know it's pride to say there's something better than OA, but there you have it, my pride expressing itself, because there is something better. I have seen alcoholics with years of sobriety give up AA and remain sober for years longer. That's because there is something better. I have seen Gambling Addicts and Narcotics Addicts give up their respective 12 Step programs with the same success. I believe there is an advantage available to a recovering alcoholic not available to a recovering compulsive overeater like myself. The alcoholic abstains from all alcoholic behaviors as well as the alcohol itself. The compulsive overeater abstains from compulsive food behaviors but cannot give up food without giving up life. The food addict needs to be constantly aware of the strength of his or her relationship to a Higher Power to keep his or her compulsive behaviors in check. I believe that is very near the truth of what the something better is. The 12 Steps are the worldly version of repentance. I know, because I recognize the Spirit and He is there at these 12 Step meetings lifting, guiding, directing, and supporting the attendees. It is truly beautiful to witness. But that means that there is an even higher standard, repentance before God, not just developing a penitent relationship with a "Higher-Power as we understand Him." A God that has a very direct and personally discernible existence. I know the higher standard. I trust the greater gift. So why am I attending OA? Because that's where I need to be. Why do I need to be there? Because perhaps I have failed at the higher standard and need to start somewhere (i.e.: Step 1). Perhaps I need my pride to be taken down a notch so I will humbly accept the 12 Steps. Perhaps I am being directed to where I need to be to learn what I need to know so I will rigorously live the higher standard I have been espousing. Perhaps I need a lesson in obedience, as simple as I am going where I need to go so I can do what I need to do so I can be what I need to be.
And what do I need to be?
- A better servant to all
- A more loving husband
- A more nurturing father
- A more successful (and employed) employee
'Tis the Season to be Thankful! Thank You for Reading!
P.S.: "You cannot change your destination overnight, but you can change your direction overnight." - Jim Rohn