This I Believe

Jennifer - Marlton, New Jersey
Entered on February 9, 2007
Age Group: 30 - 50

I believe that I can live on 24 points a day for the rest of my life.

Weight Watchers tells me how many points of food I can eat. An apple is a point, an ounce of chicken is a point, and so is a very small piece of chocolate.

I believe that virtually every day, for the rest of my life, I’m going to eat a 4 point breakfast and a 7 point lunch. Forever. And then my 2 point snack. Forever. And I have to accumulate 2 points of exercise a day so that I can have 10 points for dinner and 3 points for junk. Forever.

I don’t understand how some people can eat what they want and be normal. Or even close to normal. I can’t do that. I started to gain weight as a teenager, and, with a few brief exceptions, have been obese or morbidly obese ever since.

I’ve tried this and other diets a million times before. Occasionally I quit after a single day, more often after a couple of weeks, and always after at most a few months. Until now.

This time I’ve been following the plan for over a year. I’ve got a great leader, and a terrific group of fellow members. This time I’ve also got the support of a woman who calls herself a “diet coach” who has helped me figure out how to make this work for me. But it’s only recently, only after having lost over 85 pounds, that I believe, on occasion, that maybe it’s not a fluke, and that I am capable of losing weight. Much of the time I even believe that I can keep this up and keep the weight off.

Weight Watchers doesn’t force me to be this strictly controlled. And I believe that others can succeed without being so extreme. But I believe that I have to be this regimented. Because all evidence indicates that for me, it’s the only way it’s going to work.

Is it fun? No, of course not. The occasional splurge I get with my extra flex points is fun, but there’s something that makes eating an enormous ice cream sundae less fun when you know that you can’t go back for seconds unless you planned for it in advance.

But I also believe that this rigidity is worth it to me. I’m sure a lot of people would look at my eating regimen and conclude that it’s not worth it. Personally, I’ve concluded that it may not be worth dropping below 24 points a day and so I may never get to my official goal weight. Still, I’m not always the biggest person in the room anymore, I can shop in normal stores, and I continue to appreciate the simple act of being able to cross my legs every time I do so. But I also believe that tomorrow morning, and next week, and next month I’ll be having that 4 point breakfast.