A Little More Each Day

One working mama learning to run & to maintain my 100+ pound weight loss!

Weight Loss Wednesday: Is it worth it?

on April 23, 2014
The theme at Weight Watchers this month has been “Is it worth it?” and I’ve found the conversations really interesting. We all have different favorites that are on our “worth it” list. I enjoyed the fact that the WW leader lost control of the room once people started talking amongst themselves about a) potato chips and b) chocolate. Gotta love a bunch of food lovers in the morning. We get excited easily. 🙂
We get presented with choices about food all the time and over time, it gets easier to make the healthier choice because we learn what makes our bodies feel good and what fits in our daily allotment of points/calories. Along the way, we make a lot of little decisions about what is worth it or not and no matter how long you do this, you’ll still come across new treats or indulgences where you have to decide: Is this worth it?
Some things to consider when deciding if something is truly worth the points or calories you’re going to spend on it:
 
– Is it going to make me feel guilty or bad about myself? Yes, that means there are deeper issues about your relationship with food to work on but that also means that maybe that particular food “costs” more than the points on paper.
– Is it going to make it harder for me to stay on plan for the rest of my day/week? Bread is like this for me. Even when I have the points for it, I rarely spend them not because a Red Lobster Cheddar Bay biscuit is not totally worth 4-5 points, but because it isn’t worth the hungry feeling I have for the rest of the day after eating bread.
– Is it something where I can control my portion size? Speaking of bread, the other reason bread is only worth it for me if there are witnesses around is my own inability to self-regulate my bread intake. Sad, but true, there are certain foods I just have a hard time being satisfied with a small portion of, like ice cream.
Is it amazing or just average? Homemade cookies, possibly worth it. Generic packaged store-boughts, probably not. Cupcake from Jones Brothers (for you locals who know what I’m talking about) – worth it, generic chain restaurant cake – probably not.
Lemon tart with marshmallow topping at Raglan Road - yum!

Lemon tart with marshmallow topping at Raglan Road – yum!

– Will I spend the rest of the day eating “instead of” points? My WW leader used the phrase “instead of” points to talk about all of the things we eat to fill that empty spot we are left with after ignoring a craving for a specific food. I really want “x” but didn’t have it, so now I’ll eat “y” “z” and “q” because I’m feeling snacky and neglected. Or, in my case, eat “y, z and q” because I was such a good girl and resisted the “x” temptation in the first place!
How many miles am I going to have to put in to balance out this indulgence? Sometimes thinking about it in terms of miles helps a lot. A piece of pie for 600 calories may not seem that bad if I’ve eaten well all day, but for 6 miles it had better be good pie!
How much other food could I eat for the same number of points (or calories)? I like to eat A LOT of food, so I find myself thinking I could eat this tiny energy for 7 points or a sandwich and string cheese for the same five points. I choose bulk almost every time.
Once you’ve decided that something is worth it, two other things to keep in mind.
1) If you’ve decided it’s worth it, don’t beat yourself up about eating it and enjoying it! If you make the conscious choice to have it and think through all the things above, you shouldn’t beat yourself up later because you had that homemade croissant. Having occasional treats is what makes any diet change liveable!
2) If you’ve decided it’s worth it and take the first bite to realize that it isn’t – either because it looked better than it tasted (hate that!) or it doesn’t taste as good as you remember (tastes change once you start eating healthier!), you don’t have to finish eating it! It is okay to throw it away or share with somebody else. This may seem obvious, but it rocked my world a bit the first time I realized I could throw away an  unfinished pastry and the world wouldn’t come to an end. 🙂
Of these, I only ate all of the lemon tart.

Of these, I only ate all of the lemon tart.

What foods are always worth it for you?

6 responses to “Weight Loss Wednesday: Is it worth it?

  1. I hate when a food looks delicious and then the taste totally lets you down. Ugh! lol

    I do ask myself a few of these questions…the big ones for me are: will I feel guilty? Amazing or average? How many miles of running does it take to burn this off?

    This is a great post Jess. Thanks for sharing!

    • I feel very betrayed when something isn’t as good as it looks, especially these days. In the past I would just shrug and eat it anyway, but now I want it to be amazing!

      On Wed, Apr 23, 2014 at 6:26 AM, A Little More Each Day wrote:

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  2. Really good ice cream is usually worth it for me, or a very good desert from a bakery or restaurant. I like sweets and I’ve accepted it’s OK to indulge and not feel guilty about it, as long as I keep it in moderation, both portion size and how often I do it.
    As for actual meals, I eat anything I want but if it’s high in calories then I keep my portions smaller. Since I eat at home or home food 95% of the time, it’s really not that bad.

    • I didn’t think about it, but you’re right about eating at home. I never have to wonder if something is worth or not if I made it at home. A) It’s probably pretty healthy if I made it at home and B) If it’s not, it’s homemade so it is probably going to taste better than whatever I find out in a store.

      On Wed, Apr 23, 2014 at 12:07 PM, A Little More Each Day wrote:

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  3. leannenalani says:

    I’ve had lots of instead-of points for sure. Bread is so good! Maybe that’s why I don’t eat it very often. I also think it doesn’t keep me full long enough, but I do love the stuff. Today I avoided one of my favorite giant coffee shop cookies but I feel pretty good about that choice, especially after looking up the calorie count. Way not worth it.

    • It’s crazy how high the calorie counts are in the coffee shop goodies! I was stunned at Panera the other day, particularly remembering how I used to eat multiples of those things!

      On Wed, Apr 23, 2014 at 6:43 PM, A Little More Each Day wrote:

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