Wednesday, June 19, 2013
To review, I joined Weight Watchers in 2006, lost about 75 lbs, keeping 60 of it off to this day. After nearly five years, in the wake of their new PointsPlus program and my heart attack, I left, rejoining this past January. During those two years off I languished up and down a bit as I tried Overeaters Anonymous and TOPS, both fine organizations within their limits, but the fit wasn't there. I needed the structure of the formal, professionally-led weekly meetings if nothing else. And sure enough, I am now down 10 pounds in about 5 months in 2013. What's not to like, even at $ 42.95 a month?
In a word, complexity. In my old Weight Watchers world, it was a one stop shop, anchored by its eTools online tracking. But my heart attack said I had to watch things like saturated fat and cholesterol a bit more closely, via tools like CalorieCount and now, SparkPeople. Worse, the new PointsPlus system is noticeably less heart-healthy than the prior plan. In the name of satiety, they now prefer you eat more cream cheese, less bagel. They also simply got the bottom line wrong, giving most of us way too many points, a mistake they corrected about a year later. Finally, PointsPlus is now too complicated to do food label math in your head like before. The genius of points was their simplicity and Weight Watchers threw it away.
So now I live in three worlds, not one: weight at Weight Watchers, food at SparkPeople., and activity on FitBit (which then appears on SparkPeople). And soon, a new LA FItness opens nearby, giving me another option. Are some others right, that in this internet age where counting calories directly isn't that hard, is Weight Watchers out of date?
Do I stay or do I go?