Week 35

week 35 collage

I am absolutely freaking out that I can’t seem to lose weight anymore, and instead of maintaining my weight, I am actually gaining.  I have no excuses so I’m not going to say that it’s because of my back pain, which turns out to be scoliosis, because I got my bike back and haven’t been riding it.  I have no excuse for not riding it.

So why haven’t I been riding my bicycle and why have I been gaining weight you ask?  Well, I’m not going to blame anyone because I am in control of what I eat and what I do, or don’t do.  I would like to say that because I haven’t been able to afford the Smart Ones meals every week that that is why I haven’t been able to lose weight, but that’s no excuse.  Although I have been eating, or trying to eat healthy fruits and vegetables, I have also been eating the Banquet dinners which are a lot cheaper than the Michelina’s.  One of the Banquet meals was green in the Noom app, but all the rest have been either yellow or red.  But you can’t say I haven’t tried eating healthy because I have been eating 1 1/2 to 2 cups of broccoli or mixed veggies with broccoli, cauliflower and carrots before eating the Banquet or Michelina’s frozen dinners.  I have also been eating Malt-O-Meal for breakfast, which shows up as green in the Noom app.

I have been doing everything right, well, except for every time my partner buys cookies, I end up eating half of the package.  I have also been extra hungry and been snacking on more wheat thins than I’m supposed to be snacking on.  I’ve also been snacking on other things because the mad hunger seems to be back like it was before I went on my weight loss journey.  It’s hard to calm down my food cravings when I have deprived myself for so long.  Even though I know something is bad for me, I’ll want it that much more.  I could be eating much worse, trust me, but I’m doing my best to stay away from much worse.

So yeah, I am very disappointed in myself, but I got my check and printed out some coupons for the Weight Watchers Smart Ones frozen dinners and we’re going to go to Food Maxx today to buy some and more Malt-O-Meal.  I love those.  I am also going to ask my partner if he will please stop buying cookies and any other snacks, and if he does, be sure to hide them from me so I don’t see them and eat them.  I am also going to ask that he not ask me if I want to go to the Mexican restaurant or McDonald’s anymore because those are too tempting for me.  I don’t mind Subway, but even that is bad because of the bread, despite the fact that I always get the 9-grain wheat.

I have been doing exercises at Physical Therapy 3 days a week for approximately 30 minutes each day, which averages out to 177 calories burned each time, but I need to step it up with riding my bicycle.  I haven’t been riding it, and again this is no excuse, because my back and front tires keep going flat on me and I don’t know why.  I don’t understand why this keeps happening to me.  It’s frustrating to me.  I can’t pump the tires with my hand pump because it irritates my carpal tunnel syndrome, and I can’t keep wasting the Co2 cartridges to keep air in them daily.  1 tire uses more than 1 cartridge of air.  That’s why I haven’t been riding, because I hate having to pull over every time my tires go flat, and I can’t find what is causing them to go flat.  It’s frustrating as hell.

I wanted to save the money from the Etsy shop to buy a new bicycle, but nobody is buying anything and the Etsy shop is costing me more money every month than I am making in profits.  If people don’t start buying keychains and earrings, I’m going to have to close my Etsy store because I just can’t afford to keep paying the fees.  Of course, I will keep what items I have listed because I had to pay to list them, so I will keep them until they expire, but if nobody buys them before then, then I won’t relist them.  Whatever doesn’t sell will end up being Christmas presents because I don’t know what else to do with them.  Boy that sure showed me how unpopular my ideas are.

Wow I have totally gone off topic, haven’t I?  Anyway, I will try to do better with my diet.  If I can’t lose weight, then at least I’d like to maintain a healthy weight.  I’d love to maintain 190 if I can, which means I need to lose 6lbs again.  I’m hoping the Smart Ones will bring me back down.  I need to start saying no more too.  Those are my 2 goals for the next month.  Hopefully I can get back down to 190.  Hopefully…

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Lean Gourmet vs Smart Ones

lean gourmet smart ones

I have been eating Weight Watchers Smart Ones frozen dinners for lunch and dinner everyday since January 3rd or 4th 2013 and have lost a lot of weight.  The reason we started eating the Smart Ones is because we saw them at Food Maxx for only $1.88 and one of the packages had a coupon for $3 off 10, so we couldn’t resist considering they are around $5 at Albertson’s.

Diet food to me is a state of mind.  If you are eating food that you know isn’t good for you like say fried chicken, then you know you are eating crap and you end up making other bad choices because you don’t really care what you eat.  If you are buying a product that you know is a diet product, like Weight Watchers or Lean Cuisine, then you know you are eating healthy so you end up making better choices with other foods you eat.  I mean, that is just how I feel, you may not think the same way that I do.

It was that first batch of Weight Watchers Smart Ones that lead me to downloading Noom on my android phone which has helped me to lose more than 66lbs since January.  I have wanted to buy the Smart Ones, but I never could afford Albertson’s prices.  The decision to start using Noom also lead me to start eating fruits and vegetables, so it was literally a domino effect for me.  And like I said in the previous paragraph, it’s a state of mind.  I knew I was eating healthier, which lead me to eating more healthy foods and here we are.

So now it is mid June 2013 and I have to start making some choices.  The Smart Ones are going up in price.  Most of them went up to $1.98 and the rest have shot up even higher in price.  There are literally only 3 or 4 flavors that I actually like that are still $1.98, so my choices are now very limited.  When you only have 3 or 4 different choices, you become bored with your diet and end up branching out to eating well, crap.  So before I get to that point, I need to make a new plan of action.

We went to buy more Smart Ones the other day, but my partner found that right next to the Smart Ones were the Michelina’s Lean Gourmet for only .97 cents.  Holy crap!  That is cheap!  So, rather than buy 20 of the Smart Ones, we only bought 10 and 10 Lean Gourmet.

smart ones nutritional facts The Weight Watchers Smart Ones nutrition label shows you exactly how many calories you are eating.  I didn’t buy the same flavor in the Lean Gourmet that I also bought in the Smart Ones because I wanted all new flavors, so I couldn’t exactly compare the same meal.

This Smart Ones is the Lasagna Bake with Meat Sauce, which by the way is very good.  There are many things you want to look for when you read the nutritional facts when you are buying food.  The 3 most important things are calories, fat and sodium.  Although the sodium is pretty high in this particular meal, it does show up as green in the Noom app.  The fat content is fairly low and it doesn’t have any trans fats.  I didn’t take a picture of the ingredients, but the Smart Ones use wheat pasta.

lean gourmet nutritional facts

This particular Lean Gourmet is Creamy Rigatoni with Broccoli and Chicken.  I have had the Smart Ones version plenty of times over the months, and I have to say that this one from Lean Gourmet is way too salty.  I don’t know how much sodium is in the Smart Ones version, but this one is really high at 680.  It’s only 270 calories and the fat is pretty low, but the salt is (I’m assuming) what makes it yellow in Noom instead of Green.  I would assume that the regular Michelina’s meals are probably red.

The chicken in the Lean Gourmet has a different taste than the Smart Ones, they are also smaller than Smart Ones.  The Lean Gourmet chicken tastes like the chicken in Chicken Soup, very salty, the Smart Ones chicken tastes like actual chicken and isn’t too salty.

I have been eating the Lean Gourmet for lunch every day and the Smart Ones for dinner.  My partner doesn’t want to buy the Smart Ones anymore if these are a dollar cheaper, but I would personally rather have the Smart Ones because they just taste better.  The Lean Gourmet ones are an excellent price and around the same calories as the Smart Ones, but they are way too salty.  I would rather keep buying Smart Ones and pay that extra dollar even if it means I only have 3 or 4 choices.  But honestly, they only went up maybe .10 or .20 cents or more, so it’s not that much more expensive.  I have lots of choices, it just raises my grocery bill.

In my personal opinion, the Weight Watchers Smart Ones are the better deal because your sodium is lower and the taste is 10 times better and you are actually getting 1oz more food.  Quality wins over quantity.

Vaping and Weight Loss

ecigarettes and eliquid

I am constantly getting messages from people who have read my posts about vaping and weight loss asking me if it works, and not all stick around in the chat for me to respond properly.  Let me just say that it is not going to help you lose weight.  I have said many times in my posts that vaping is not a replacement for diet and exercise.  If you want to replace the sweet tooth with vaping that’s one thing, but unless you are eating a balanced diet, eating fruits and vegetables and watching your portions and exercising, you are not going to lose weight.

When I started vaping, it was with the understanding that it might help me lose weight, but I discovered that it didn’t do a damn thing.  The only thing it did was get me to stop snacking on candy and junk food, but I was still going to the buffets and still eating bad carbs and all that other bad stuff that you know you shouldn’t eat.  Vaping only replaced one thing for me, but it didn’t help me lose 1 ounce of fat.

From January 5th to today April 15th 2013, I have lost nearly 50lbs.  Want to know how?  Sure you do, that’s why you are here.  I downloaded the Noom app from the Google Play store for my Android phone.  I have been scanning food which are mostly all green items.  Here is a typical day for me.

  • Breakfast at 8 a.m.: Exactly 1 cup of Cheerios with Silk Soy Milk (not measured, I pour it until the cereal rises then I stop).
  • Morning Snack at 10 a.m.: Fruit, like a banana or an apple.
  • Lunch at 12 p.m.: A Weight Watchers Smart Ones meal or Lean Cuisine.
  • Afternoon Snack at 3 p.m.: Either fruit, steamed vegetables or Wheat Thins.
  • Dinner at 6 p.m.: A Weight Watcher  Smart Ones Meal or Lean Cuisine.
  • Evening Snack (Optional): Either Fruit, steamed vegetables, Wheat Thins or Jello.

I’d like to note that I buy the Weight Watchers Smart Ones at Food Maxx for $1.88 and I also get coupons for $3 off when you buy 10, so that is a very good deal for me since it is way more expensive at Albertson’s.  I only buy the Lean Cuisine when they are on sale for the same price which isn’t too often, but I like to have the variety when they are on sale.  Some people may have an issue with them, but they are good and they are real food despite some people saying they aren’t.  They are made with healthy ingredients.  You should give them a try, they might surprise you.

That’s basically my day and that is 1400 calories or less depending on what I decide to eat for my snacks.  I drink coffee in the morning until the pot is empty and then I drink Crystal Light the rest of the day.  I should say you should drink water, but we all know that water sucks.  I should be telling you to cut up a lemon or an orange and soak it in your water pitcher, but come on, Crystal Light tastes so much better lol.  Plus it’s like 50 cents a pitcher, or if you buy the generic version, half that per pitcher.

So that is how I lost nearly 50lbs in 3 1/2 months.  Not everyone agrees with my method, but it works for me.  I haven’t had 1 week where I didn’t lose weight.  Most every week I lose 3 to 4 pounds, but this week it was 1.8lbs.  Why?  I honestly don’t know, but I know that my next weigh in will make up for it.  I probably shouldn’t jinx myself by saying I have lost weight every week, but it’s true.  I normally plateau after the first month, but I’ve kept up the routine and it’s working so I’m going to continue to do that until I am at my goal weight.

I am still vaping from time to time to get the sweet taste in my mouth, but I really don’t need it as much as I did when I was still eating junk food.  I feel as though I have kicked the sweet tooth.  I have all the sweet flavors I need with the fruits and the crystal light.  I don’t even bake fruit cookies anymore to satisfy my sweet tooth because it’s practically gone.

To anyone who doesn’t smoke who thinks that vaping might help them lose weight I will just save you the time and money now by saying it does not.  If you want to lose weight, download the Noom app on your Android phone if you have one, iPhone coming soon.  If you don’t have an Android or iPhone, well what are you waiting for?  Get with the times, sheesh!

The most important thing I can tell you that if you want to lose weight you need to stop going to the buffet and the fast food restaurants and start eating healthy for goodness sake.  That’s your problem right there.  Even if you don’t go to the buffets or to the fast food places, if you are overeating the food you cook at home and not eating a balanced portion then that’s why you are overweight.  You have to look at the label on everything you make and eat the exact portion you are supposed to eat.  Like if you buy a box of Macaroni and Cheese, you can’t eat the whole box, that’s too many calories.  That’s like half of your day right there.  You have to be mindful of how many calories you are putting into your body because that’s why you can’t lose weight.

Also, no more ICE CREAM!  You know you don’t stop at half a cup, admit it.  You put 3-4 scoops in your bowl.  That’s too many calories and that was my big issue.  I have discovered that you can eat ice cream as long as it is made with natural healthy ingredients.  Like this Banana Ice Cream recipe.  It’s just a frozen banana pureed in a food processor with a tiny splash of milk, that’s it.  It’s frozen like soft serve so it tricks your brain into thinking you are eating actual ice cream, but it’s just a banana.  You can do that with any fruit you like.  I tried it with a cantaloupe and it was delicious.

I haven’t mentioned exercise yet.  Guess what?  I haven’t been exercising.  I know I should and I don’t mean to make excuses but I have to.  I have a spinal disease called Degenerative Disc Disease which is very extremely painful.  I can walk for maybe 5 minutes before the pain starts and after 20 it’s debilitating.  I can ride my bike, but guess what?  I started to ride my bike a month ago when the weather started to warm up and I broke my arm.  A broken arm means I can’t ride my bike.  So I have no more options until my arm is healed.  I’m not saying you should eat healthy and not exercise and lose nearly 50lbs in 3 1/2 months, but that worked for me.  I do plan on getting back on my bike when this heals in the next couple or few weeks, so I’m not trying to be lazy, I’m just in a lot of pain and you can’t ride a bike with one arm in a sling lol.

So anyway, I hope I’ve made my point about vaping and weight loss not being a good way to lose weight.  I do recommend that if you are a current smoker and you want to quit smoking cigarettes and start vaping that you should because it is way healthier for you than cigarettes are.  You can quit smoking if you switch to vaping because you can step down on your nicotine.  When you order your e-liquids from Zeus E-Juice (which I highly recommend) you can order as much or as little nicotine as you want with your e-juice for your eGo e-cigarette.  You get a lot of sweet flavors (my favorite is Banana Nut Bread) and you aren’t inhaling or exhaling smoke, it’s water vapor, so you aren’t harming yourself, spouse, children, friends, co-workers or pets.  It’s perfectly safe for everyone if you switch to vaping.

Good luck on your weight loss and I hope my suggestion helped you.