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Weight Watcher's Foodies -- The H H H Edition! July 2014

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As if on cue, today the weather changed from pleasantly warm, to hazy, hot, and humid. July is here! For me, eating lighter foods has been considerably easier since the weather has become warmer. And the bounty of produce that is coming into the market should only make that even easier.

Last night for dinner, I had a very thin piece of swordfish, which was grilled and covered with a tomato salad that I had made. It was delicious, and just the thing for a warm evening.

So WW foodies -- how is the warmer (if not downright hot!) weather causing you to be more conscious of eating lighter foods?

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  1. I made a batch of this farro salad on Sunday and will have it for lunches this week. Topped with some lightly sauteed wild red Argentinian shrimp from TJ's, it was a lovely meal and will become a staple in my fridge. Works for Simple Start, too.

    http://www.thekitchn.com/recipe-summe...

    5 Replies
    1. re: FlyerFan

      That looks delicious. Thanks for sharing! Don't the tomatoes and cucumbers get kind of slimy after a couple of days?

      1. re: roxlet

        also, i've found that tomatoes get mealy and flavorless once they've been refrigerated.
        maybe add them just before eating?

        1. re: westsidegal

          Well Day 2 of the farro salad and I haven't noticed any degradation of either the tomatoes or cucumber. We'll see what happens as the week goes on!

          I can see this salad being super versatile...add roasted veggies and balsamic vinegar one week, chopped bok choy, carrots and edamame and rice wine vinegar another week, black beans, corn, tomatoes, peppers, cilantro and lime juice another week, etc. etc.

      2. re: FlyerFan

        That does sound good. Will have to add farro to the shopping list.

        1. re: FlyerFan

          Oooooh, this looks yummy! I'm going to make it after my next farmers market trip! :-) Thanks!

        2. Wake up call- up 3 after two mini birthday vacations- a one nighter and a two nighter. Ate mostly in restaurants or from take-out and there was a homemade birthday dinner featuring pasta. I hope I can get back down 3 and maintain that as we have a 2 week vacation on the cape in 10 days. We will eat in or prep our own beach meals so this is less challenging than solid restaurant meals. I am bringing the damn scale with me too.

          7 Replies
          1. re: Berheenia

            Whoa! Bringing a scale on vacation? That's commitment!

            1. re: JoanN

              You mentioned slow going at your age and I think we are the same generation so you understand that a true 3 pound gain would take me a month to undo and if I can gain 3 in less than a week think of the damage I could do in two!
              It's taken me four careful months to lose ~14 and I'm going for 20.

              1. re: Berheenia

                It really is a helluva lot harder when you're older, isn't it? Fourteen pounds is very inspiring.

            2. re: Berheenia

              Berheenia! That's impressive!

              1. re: Berheenia

                Have you read about weight fluctuations and why they happen? If not, please do. A 3 pound shift is likely *nothing* and nothing to worry about unless you know for sure you've consumed an extra 10,500 calories above and beyond maintenance and exercise. What the scale says when you weigh yourself one time isn't necessarily the truth.

                http://www.healthdiscovery.net/articl...

                http://www.nerdfitness.com/blog/2010/...

                1. re: weezieduzzit

                  Thanks for the links and yes I know and will try to keep it in mind. However posters on this board tend to open with "up" or "down" and a number. I usually weigh my self on Thursday (old habit from when I was in a WW group) and that is today and so my report is "up 2". I use the Sparks Program so I enter my weight in once a week. Lots of fatty salty food was a factor and I think I probably consumed about 3000 more calories over a three day trip than I would have eaten at home. Something about the lake air and being on a strip of fast food joints. Plus it was my birthday.

                  1. re: Berheenia

                    Actually, fat doesn't make you gain weight (its the only macronutrient that doesn't raise insulin,) unless it was deep fried carbs, of course!

                    I'm thinking of throwing the scale away today (its garbage pick up day.) I rarely weigh anyhow. I'm due for yet another smaller pair of jeans (I can easily wiggle out without unbuttoning or unzipping,) so I'm not so concerned about a number on a scale. What I'm doing is working as long as I work it and it shows.

              2. Down .4 this morning. Man, this is slow going. Lost a lot faster when I first joined WW more than 35 years ago. Granted, I was a helluva lot more active then. Need to remind myself that’s an average of .6 down a week since I started, so at least it’s going in the right direction.

                Recipe finds of the week adapted for Simple Start: Ratatouille from “Avec Eric” made with less oil and only one once of Parmesan. Best ratatouille I ever made. And a Shallot and Mushroom Frittata, again with reduced amount of cheese, from “SkinnyTaste.”

                 
                 
                2 Replies
                1. re: JoanN

                  Both look delicious, Joan! My best ratatouille is from River Cottage Veg - it is roasted and low fat. I am craving quiche of all things and need to get to a market today to buy fresh greens - big farm fresh salad will go well with this muggy day.

                  1. re: herby

                    I made the Ripert recipe, which called for 1/4 cup of oil, with only four teaspoons, so that came out to only one teaspoon per serving. I think that what I liked so much about this recipe was that the onions, peppers, and garlic were well caramelized--and the veggies chunkier than I've cut them in the past.

                    Do you make a crustless quiche? I've never tried that.

                2. Yesterday was another pretty good day. I'm enjoying having an omelet for lunch, which is a very manageable 5 points. I finely diced a serrano pepper and mixed that with the 3 egg whites and 2 whole eggs for extra zip, and I filled it with one slice of WW 1 point cheese. Last night, I just had a vegetable salad with a little pasta. I didn't even feel like the cold chicken I was planning on having with it.

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: roxlet

                    I find the eggs to be pretty filling. The other night I came home and it was just me for dinner. I have been keeping Egg Beaters in the house. 1/2 cup is just 1 point. But we were out of that so I used 2 eggs, plus 3 egg whites (I was going to use 4 egg whites and realized that I didn't need so much). I had some leftover cooked spinach in the refrigerator plus some frozen onions. So I threw the onions and spinach in the pan to heat them up, then added the eggs and at the end sprinkled some low fat cheese on top to melt. With that I had 2 slices of WW whole wheat bread with some grape jelly. I actually didn't even finish all of the eggs and saved some for the next days breakfast. All in it was 9 or 10 points, which is pretty good for dinner since I usually leave myself at least 12 or 13 points for dinner.

                    I have to say I was proud of myself for actually leaving some of the eggs over instead of eating them just because they were there!

                    I haven't weighed in for about 3 weeks, mostly due to scheduling conflicts, but I plan to go tomorrow. According to my home scale, I am down...we shall see tomorrow.

                    1. re: valerie

                      That's great! Good luck on the weigh-in tomorrow!

                  2. We've been doing a LOT of caesar salads lately with a reduced fat yogurt-based dressing (very, very little, just enough to coat the lettuce!) and either grilled chicken or grilled shrimp and some shredded parm, hold the croutons. I also am eating a lot more fruit now.

                    Just back from an extended weekend back to the midwest for my high school reunion. I fully expected to see a decent gain this week because of it, but I was pretty sick (bad head cold) for most of the time, so I didn't really eat all that much, and I certainly drank a lot less wine than I'd originally planned to, so I'm actually down a bit, which is cool by me. I'm still off work the rest of the week, and plan to enjoy a few holiday weekend indulgences, but will go back to Simple Start next week.

                    1. Well hello. My have I fallen off the wagon....moving, traveling, stress at work, all factors that have been my downfalls my entire life. At this time last year, I had gotten all the way down to 138, my lowest adult weight (still quite a healthy weight at 5'3"). I knew I had gained some, but I pulled out the scale this morning, and it came up to 155. Ugh. My original goal weight was 150 so I'm even above that.

                      So, while I'm not sure I'll get down to 138 again, I'd like to get back under 150 as my first goal.

                      My biggest task right now is getting better at "on the fly" meals. At my old job, I had a lot of free time so I was able to plan out my meals, pre-track, etc. But now that's not really an option. So I'm working on being able to buy random foods at the grocery store, and then making meals out of what I have that are still healthy.

                      5 Replies
                      1. re: juliejulez

                        But you're back, and you're getting back on track. So, so hard to do, I know. But it's a first step, and good for you.

                        1. re: juliejulez

                          Welcome back, JJ. Sounds like you have some real challenges, but you're still doing great to get back on track.

                          1. re: juliejulez

                            Nice to have another friend from WFD. Sometimes I have to look away from that board as they make such terrific food that it's hard not to make a meatloaf and mashed potatoes for dinner instead of that vegetable soup. I actually gave them up for Lent! On this board I've learned to love egg white omelets and I ditched the butter for Pam. We ran out of regular mayonnaise and I didn't even know because now I use dijonnaise instead.

                            1. re: Berheenia

                              Try living with it!!

                            2. re: juliejulez

                              I'm with you juliejulez at 155 and my first goal is under 150 with a target of 135. I've just started insulin for diabetes and weight control with exercise is crucial for me.
                              How are you doing today?

                            3. Up a tiny bit today, but I'm ok with that. Going out to the beach this weekend, so it will be an interesting 3 days. At least there are some great farm stands!

                              1. I just weighed in after not weighing in for 3 weeks. Down 2.4. Summer is definitely easier for me. I swear it's the watermelon!

                                2 Replies
                                1. re: valerie

                                  That's funny -- someone in my meeting was complaining that she hasn't lost weight because of all the watermelon she's been eating. After saying that 1/2 cup of watermelon is one serving, my leader said, "Watermelon didn't bring you here." Today was my leader's 28th anniversary as a WW leader!

                                  1. re: roxlet

                                    Ha! I know I have mentioned it previously but that's one line I heard years ago that always makes me laugh...someone was questioning the amount of carrots to eat and the leader said "hey, nobody is here because they are eating too many carrots"!

                                    Seriously, this thread has also helped me...really. Thanks to all who keep it going!

                                2. Down 1.2 this morning which I’m very pleased with, especially considering all the drinking and indulgences of the long weekend. Best Simple Start dish of the week: Fisherman’s Shrimp from “Revolutionary Chinese Cookbook,” subbing garlic scapes for Chinese chives. I’m even getting used to brown rice. Still much prefer the texture of white, but eating the brown doesn’t make me feel quite as deprived as it once did. Onward and downward!

                                   
                                  4 Replies
                                  1. re: JoanN

                                    Looks great JoanN. Almost good enough to tempt me back into this thread!

                                    ~TDQ

                                    1. re: JoanN

                                      That looks great! And great job on your loss!

                                      After having a nice loss last Thursday, it went downhill from there for me. We had a rather social weekend and food was a big part of it. And then we hosted a July 4th party on Sunday and I always serve pigs in blankets. I don't even want to think about how many I ate! And there was the chocolate cream pie and apple pie that must have 3 sticks of butter...oy.

                                      Truth be told, I haven't been feeling well from overindulging for 4 days in a row. So for the past 2 days I have been back on track and hopefully I will undo the damage quickly....

                                      1. re: valerie

                                        I'd have some serious trouble resisting pigs in a blanket, too. But good for you for being back on track and not using the holiday indulgences as an excuse to turn 4 days into a week. (Who? Me? Not this time, but as you say . . . oy.)

                                        1. re: valerie

                                          Good for you for getting back on track. And it's good that you're listening to your body's cues about overindulging. It's saying, "OK, you had your fun, but let's get back to it!"

                                          It's almost as if you'd have been better off going into the long holiday weekend without having had a recent big success. I had a similar experience. I swear whenever I see good progress on the scale, I give myself permission to ease up a little, instead of feeling motivated by my success. :(

                                          I had oatmeal, yogurt and berries for breakfast and packed a plan-friendly lunch and snacks for work today, so that's a start anyway.

                                          ~TDQ

                                      2. Feeling a little deprived I dragged the old man out to lunch yesterday and worked my way through a Cobb Salad. The dressing was a vinaigrette on the side so except for the bacon I felt virtuous. I brought home the chicken and the egg for another meal.
                                        I just made this recipe with the 4 quarters of hb egg from the salad using 2 tsps of Hellmans light. It was very good. A reward for weeding for an hour.

                                        http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/in...

                                        19 Replies
                                        1. re: Berheenia

                                          Oh, that Ina recipe does look good. And what a terrific idea to use 2 tsps Hellmans light. I've just been avoiding anything at all with mayo, although I have been making vinaigrettes with only 2 tsps of oil. Now I have all these new recipes I can consider. Thanks.

                                          1. re: JoanN

                                            Also smoked salmon and its cousins surprised me with their low calorie count. And there is fat but it is healthy fat I believe.

                                            1. re: Berheenia

                                              I was rather shocked, and pleased, to see that smoked whitefish is a power food. Unfortunately, smoked salmon isn't. I'm still doing Simple Start just because after even five weeks I'm still not finding it onerous. Will have to save the smoked salmon until I go back to counting points, which I suspect will be fairly soon.

                                              1. re: JoanN

                                                Opps. Somehow I'd lost track about smoked salmon. Just smoked salmon or all salmon? (I do simply filling techique/ss...)

                                                ~TDQ

                                                1. re: The Dairy Queen

                                                  Some is, but most aren't. You really have to look up exactly what kind of salmon you've got, or what you're going to buy. (Discovered that after I, of course, bought the wrong kind thinking I was being so good.)

                                                  1. re: JoanN

                                                    OK, thank you. I just looked it up again. Nice to have a refresher. Sometimes I think I know the plan so well, I sometimes get lazy about looking stuff up. I know sometimes I forget about the slight changes they've made to the power foods list over the years...

                                                    ~TDQ

                                          2. re: Berheenia

                                            A little bacon can go a long way in terms of battling that deprivation feeling and if you count points for it, no big deal.

                                            I have come to the conclusion that I simply do not have enough willpower to resist junk food in my house. I had some people over recently and put out plan friendly snacks. Seasoned popcorn, lovely fresh fruit, hummus, but all of my guests brought snacks too--chips and chocolate and trail mix etc.--...and left them behind for me! I took quite a bit to the office, but kept some stuff at home I knew my family might enjoy... But I don't have the willpower not to snack on it!

                                            Something similar happened to me 3-4 months ago when I was asking in this thread for plan-friendly snacks I could take to my mom's group. The consensus from this group was go ahead and take unhealthy snacks (along with a decent snack for myself) and let the others indulge. I was able to resist the snacks during my group, but I couldn't stay out of the left-overs once I got them home. And then I fell off-plan. :(

                                            I wish I could find a way to have stuff in my house that my family enjoys without overindulging in it.

                                            Anyone have any tips on this? I'm really struggling with it.

                                            ~TDQ

                                            1. re: The Dairy Queen

                                              Ask your family to indulge in those snacks away from home and just don't bring it in the house. If you end up with leftovers, throw them away immediately. (Do you really want them eating junk anyhow?)

                                              1. re: weezieduzzit

                                                You have a good point about the junk from my most recent gathering. Maybe I should have thrown it out or made my husband take it to work with him. (I tried to make people take it with them, but you know, they think they are being "nice" by leaving it with you and think you're just refusing it to be polite... Or they don't want it in THEIR house...)

                                                But the stuff I had for my mom's group wasn't really junk (and I should have clarified this, sorry about that)--it was delicious, high-quality food ( and stuff I wouldn't mind my family having in moderation) baked cheese etc., but that doesn't make it plan friendly.

                                                One of the people in my house is a preschooler. And while of course we can go out for ice cream and not keep that in the house, sometimes I like to bake with him and things like that. How do I handle that kind of stuff?

                                                ~TDQ

                                                1. re: The Dairy Queen

                                                  You could always make healthy on plan "treats" with the preschooler. If freezing things in single portions doesn't work for you, gift the items you make.

                                                  1. re: weezieduzzit

                                                    Might have to try freezing in single portions.

                                                    I'm still open to other input if anyone else has ideas.

                                                    ~TDQ

                                                    1. re: The Dairy Queen

                                                      My almost 3 year old just loves helping me bake, as long as she gets to have a sample of whatever it is later (usually after "quiet time/would you please nap for a bit today time") so we do a lot of muffins. I personally don't care for muffins that much, so that helps with my nibbling. And this helps with managing her nut allergies, I can bust out a freezer muffin with frosting of cream cheese and jam smushed together with a fork, and we are set for family gatherings. Instant cupcake!

                                                      Sometimes I will experiment with gluten free recipes (SIL has celiacs) with my kiddo. I just want to know if it's good enough to bring to a gathering, so she gets to help me, and all I really want is a taste for quality control. I could care less if I wind up tossing the creation later, I just want to protect my culinary reputation, and an afternoon in the kitchen with my kiddo certainly pays for itself

                                                      1. re: autumm

                                                        So sweet of the two of you baking together. We like to cook together, too.

                                                        I wish I had that kind of self-control. Part of my issue, I think, is that I'm a stress eater, so if I'm really stressed, I can eat a lot of things I otherwise wouldn't (and then fell really rotten about it, of course). In the past I've dealt with that by just not having it in the house.Now it's harder. Sure, I can throw it away or give it away (although, even giving it away isn't that easy these days. My office is pretty small. I should really remember to send more things with my husband. I think people there will eat anything!)

                                                        ~TDQ

                                                        1. re: The Dairy Queen

                                                          I have that same problem with baking--I don't want to eat it all myself and my work is small so when I bring it in, I end up eating it all here anyway!

                                                          1. re: The Dairy Queen

                                                            I freeze a lot of baked goods. Mr Autumn likes a sweet snack after the kid goes to bed, so he knows where the cookies are in the freezer.

                                                            It helps that I've lost much of my sweet tooth since my pregnancy. Now salty and crunchy, that's a different problem.

                                                2. re: The Dairy Queen

                                                  Marry a man who eats processed foods. We have Table Talk pies and Oreos and I have no interest. But I have outlawed good potato chips and Ben and Jerry's.

                                                  1. re: Berheenia

                                                    Oh, he eats them. He just doesn't eat them all immediately. Sometimes I do make him hide them so I won't be tempted. Probably should have done that this time, too.

                                                    ~TDQ

                                                    1. re: The Dairy Queen

                                                      Do you have a cabinet that he can reach but you'd have to haul out a stool for? Forcing yourself to do that might be just the extra deterrent you need not to reach for it.

                                                      I live alone, so have the luxury of only buying what I want to have in the house. But sometimes, for things like Parmesan cheese or baking goodies that I'll buy when I'm having a dinner party, I'll vacuum pack them if they can be vacuumed. That at least keeps me from "just having a little taste."

                                                      1. re: JoanN

                                                        Awesome idea! We have crazy high up cabinets in our kitchen and I cannot reach the top shelf at all (even with long kitchen tongs) and can only reach some stuff on the second highest shelf if I stand on my tiptoes and use kitchen tongs! I've kind of need to clear out those shelves any way...

                                                        I like the vacuum pack idea, too! Those, together with weezie's ideas, make a good collection of strategies I can arm myself with.

                                                        ~TDQ

                                              2. Well, I was up a little again this week, but not too bad considering the indulgences of this past weekend at the beach. My leader mentioned that you could go between the Simple Start and the counting points, and I may try doing SS for a few days this week. Not tonight since we are meeting friends for dinner, but maybe for the rest of the week. I assume that the goal would be to stay within your daily points, and not go over 7 extra per day.

                                                12 Replies
                                                1. re: roxlet

                                                  I didn't know when JoanN kept referring to Simple Start that is was a WW program! I just googled it and it looks a terrific way to get started. Who knew!

                                                  1. re: Berheenia

                                                    Simple Start is more or less the same as the old Weight Watchers "core plan" where you were able to eat from their list of "core foods" to satisfaction without counting points. Also, you must follow the good health guidelines.

                                                    Later they phased it out as its own program and started calling it the simply filling technique (where you eat mostly from their filling foods list, which is an adapted version of the old core foods list), which was just considered a tool you could use under the flex/points program.

                                                    Now they call it Simple Start where you eat mostly from the "power foods" list (sames as the old core foods/filling foods list with modifications).

                                                    I've really had a lot of luck with this starting back when it was still called core. The hitch is that you have less flexibility than you do with counting points, but if you're okay with eating lean proteins, whole grains, nonfat dairy and tons o' fruits and veg, it's pretty easy.

                                                    And you still get your weekly points allowance and your activity points.

                                                    It used to be you could only switch between flex(points) and core at the start of your week. Now you can switch as frequently as daily if you want. I try to do simple start/simply filling/core during the week and points on the weekends.

                                                    ~TDQ

                                                    1. re: The Dairy Queen

                                                      It's now a daily point allowance of 7 points that don't carry over.

                                                      1. re: roxlet

                                                        Yes, good point! Though my leader told me that that is really only for the first two weeks. After that --if you intend to do Simple Start indefinitely--she said you can track it weekly.

                                                        ETA: but if you're switching back and forth frequently between SS and points, you should probably track it daily.

                                                        ~TDQ

                                                        1. re: The Dairy Queen

                                                          I didn't know that. Interesting. Makes it easier to do Simple Start...

                                                          1. re: roxlet

                                                            I think so. I think they want to keep it super simple, so to speak, for the first two weeks which is why they make you track it daily at first. But, once you get the hang of it, they ease up. However, you really do need to track it or you'll discover that you don't lose weight.

                                                            A lot of people like to say Simple Start/Simply Filling/Core is WW without tracking. I like to tweak that slightly and say it's WW without counting points. For the best success you should still track (even if you're not counting points) because you have to keep track of all of your discretionary points and also of your daily progress towards the good health guidelines. That's where a lot of SS/SFT/core people fall down, I think, is that all they eat is proteins and grains (because they don't have to track them) and forget that they still need to eat a certain number of servings of fruits and veg, milk, healthy fats and water daily.

                                                            You still need to track or you're just fooling yourself!

                                                            ~TDQ

                                                          2. re: The Dairy Queen

                                                            I wasn't paying careful attention the first two weeks since I wasn't going over 7 points a day anyway. But those 49 points a week are definitely cumulative at this point. Weekend before last I had 16 ounces of wine one night and my chart just deducted that from the total available for the week.

                                                      2. re: Berheenia

                                                        Sorry if I was being obtuse. I know Simple Start was new to me as well. Last time I was on WW, they didn't even have the Core plan; counting points was the only option.

                                                        Anyway, that's why I've been so excited about some of the dishes or meals I've been making. They're all made solely with power foods and no more than 2 teaspoons of oil a day. It seems as though it should be limiting and boring, but I haven't found it so at all.

                                                        1. re: JoanN

                                                          Joan, I think core has been around longer than you think. I was following the core plan back in 2008 (when I was trying to do Dunlop COTM and making all kinds of adjustments to the recipes to make them core) and I think you were doing WW around that time, too. I think core was first rolled out around 2004/2005... Eventually, around 2010/2011 or so, core was eliminated as its own program and just became the simply filling technique under the main points program. At that point they were trying to steer everyone towards power foods. They didn't want people to think that power foods were just for the "core" people.

                                                          In 2014 they morphed it into Simple Start and they try to steer all of the newbies in that direction. I think it's so people really get well-acquainted with the power foods before they start counting points.

                                                          Of course, they've made a lot of adjustments to core/sft/simple start over the course of 10 years. Added some power foods, subtracted some power foods (foods, I think, that people tended to abuse like olives and avocado) and changed some limits and things like that.

                                                          ~TDQ

                                                          1. re: JoanN

                                                            P.S. I'm so so so excited to find someone else who likes Simple Start! I often used to feel like I was so alone in it.

                                                            Do have some recipes that have really been working for you so far on SS?

                                                            Recipes that come to mind for me are Melissa Clarks roasted shrimp with broccoli (have to adapt for the oil or count points for any above your daily limit). Also, there's a roasted chicken, garbanzo beans and cherry tomatoes recipe on epicurious that adapts nicely to SS.

                                                            ~TDQ

                                                            1. re: The Dairy Queen

                                                              I've been on Simple Start for what? five weeks now? I had never intended to do that, but I'm just finding it so . . . simple. I'm not losing weight as quickly as I'd hoped, but I'm losing. At the beginning, I made a few meals from the WW lunches and dinners lists, but since then I've just been looking at my cookbooks and seeing what either is, or can be made, Simple Start. For instance, this was last night's dinner from this months COTM: Seared Tuna with Fresh Corn & Wasabi “Cream." All power foods, plus 1 tsp of oil for the asparagus and 1 tsp of oil to sear the tuna. Here's the COTM review if you're interested: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/9809... It was spectacular. I'm sure I'll be making this all corn-season long. Tonight I'm making the Fennel Pollen-Dusted Branzino with White Wine, Tomatoes, and Fennel Broth from "Avec Eric." I'll cut back on the oil, eliminate the butter, and split the wine--half for the recipe, half for me. And I'm finding there are very few stir-fries I can't make with just one teaspoon of oil, as long as I've seasoned the wok first (which just means heating the work, pouring in a few tablespoons of oil, swishing it around so it coats the wok, and then pouring it all out. Can't remember which COTM I got that from, but it works the charm).

                                                              Also, when I make a meal that's really good, I take a photo of it and save it to a WW folder on my desktop so I can be reminded of it and find it again if I run out of ideas. But that hasn't happened yet.

                                                               
                                                              1. re: JoanN

                                                                Excellent, thank you. Well, I shall be reading along your escapades. It's so nice to find someone else who is focusing on power foods, too!

                                                                And, yes, once you have the power foods list more or less memorized, simple start is pretty simple. I can find that I can do it even when life gets crazy whereas with counting points, I feel like I have to be in the right frame of mind.

                                                                ~TDQ

                                                      3. Down 1.8 this morning. Whoot! Best Simple Start meal of the week was the Seared Tuna with Fresh Corn & Wasabi “Cream” noted above. Also excellent, Fennel Pollen-Dusted Whole Branzino with White Wine, Tomatoes and Fennel Broth from “Avec Eric.” I know. The fish looks as though it wasn’t cooked. I assure you it was. Perfectly. Also good, Chilled Asparagus Tonnato from “Radically Simple.” I’m sure that last, meant to be a first-course salad, would have been considerably better with the tuna in oil that was called for, but even using tuna in water and cutting way back on the amount of additional oil in the recipe, this was a lovely, very satisfying, and super quick to prepare dinner on a hot, muggy night.

                                                        Off for a long weekend in the country. Hoping it isn’t too much of a challenge since the friends I’m visiting aren’t heavy drinkers and are generally healthful eaters. I’ll be bringing up prime strip steaks for the grill and one of the hosts will be making potato salad, neither of which are on plan. But that will be only one meal. I think I ought to be able to cope.

                                                         
                                                         
                                                        1 Reply
                                                        1. re: JoanN

                                                          Congrats! And thank you for sharing your successes, both on the scale, and in delicious cooking with us! Good luck this weekend! As long as you eat mindfully, even if not perfectly on plan, you'll be okay. And remember to get in a little extra activity if you can. Nice walk in the country, perhaps?

                                                          ~TDQ

                                                        2. Didn’t lose any weight this week. But at least I didn’t gain any, either. And after a long weekend in the country, eating on plan some days but indulging in prime beef, too much champagne, apple pie a la mode, and copious amounts of cheese on others, I’m content with that. No Simple Start meals to report on. One meal I cooked was a repeat of the seared tuna with corn, which both my friend and her (supposedly non-tuna-eating) daughter liked tremendously and the other was prime strip steaks on the grill for six. (Kinda funny that I, the only one of us who lives in an apartment and practically never gets to grill over charcoal, was in charge of the steaks. But I brought my trusty Thermapen with me and at least was able to ensure that MY steak was just barely medium rare when everyone else wanted theirs closer to medium. Why was I so surprised that so many people who care about really good food wanted their steaks medium? Seemed a shame, but at least everyone was happy.)

                                                          2 Replies
                                                          1. re: JoanN

                                                            Congrats! Sounds like a victory, maintaining while out of town. Sounds like you ate well, too! I see DH has prevailed in the COTM vote. My copy of COA has arrived and I'm hoping to find some plan-friendly gems in there.

                                                            ~TDQ

                                                            1. re: The Dairy Queen

                                                              I've only barely begun to go through "A Change of Appetite" with an eye toward what can be made Simple Start compliant and have already marked quite a few recipes. In fact, one is on schedule for tomorrow night. Looks very promising, even though she does use more butter and sugar than I would have expected, both of which I'm avoiding right now. I'll adjust as necessary.

                                                          2. I was the poster who was going to bring her WW scale on vacation. Well I didn't but after 2 weeks of careful indulgence and active time at the beach I was pleased to be down 1. Yippee. I think what worked was we did not go out for dinner but ate that meal in. That's when after a few cocktails/glasses of wine I throw caution to the wind and am up all night with gastric distress because I ate too much rich food. Instead we went out for terrific lunches, brunch, drinks and apps and stayed away from the ice cream shops and clam shacks. Some incredible chowder and a local jerk chicken salad made me very happy. And my husband has painlessly lost 10 pounds and makes up for the lower calorie meals with an ice cream a day.

                                                            3 Replies
                                                            1. re: Berheenia

                                                              Going on vacation and losing a pound is great!! Sounds like you had fun and ate well too.

                                                              1. re: Berheenia

                                                                Well done, Berheenia! I was away only four days and barely managed to hold even. Very impressive, and inspirational.

                                                                1. re: Berheenia

                                                                  Congrats! A loss under any circumstances is worth celebrating, but while on vacation, well, that's doubly wonderful!

                                                                  ~TDQ

                                                                2. Three new WW Summertime stir-fries from Grace Young:

                                                                  Warm Summer Slaw
                                                                  3 PointsPlus Value/Prep time: 17 min/Cook time: 3 min/Serves: 4
                                                                  http://www.weightwatchers.com/food/rc...

                                                                  Bell Pepper and Tomato Pesto Stir-Fry
                                                                  3 PointsPlus Value/Prep time: 11 min/Cook time: 3 min/Serves: 4
                                                                  http://www.weightwatchers.com/food/rc...

                                                                  Jalapeno Shrimp with Zucchini and Avocado
                                                                  6 PointsPlus Value/Prep time: 20 min/Cook time: 4 min/Serves: 4
                                                                  http://www.weightwatchers.com/food/rc...

                                                                  1. So my mom texted me over the weekend to invite me over for pizza and Shrek on Monday night. (My brother is in Shrek: The Musical right now, and my step-dad has never seen it, so we had to educate him before we go see it.) I only had 3 weekly points left at that point, so I knew I had to be careful.

                                                                    I made some bad choices at work, and that left me with 21 points (out of 42) when I left the office. Went to the gym, got 9. 30 points was enough to have three slices of pizza and be okay. Score!

                                                                    I get there, and... there are cookies. I expected the soda, but I didn't know oatmeal chocolate chip cookies were to be had.... And not just cookies! They were still in the process of being made, so there was COOKIE DOUGH.

                                                                    I ended up eating 78 points yesterday. :| With my activity points, I think I'm only going to be negative 9 for the week, but still. I was so defenseless against those freaking cookies.

                                                                    7 Replies
                                                                    1. re: Kontxesi

                                                                      Funny what we're defenseless against, isn't it? I was defenseless against a pitcher of peach sangria this past weekend. Doesn't sound too bad, except it was loaded with peach liqueur, which is, of course, what made it so good.

                                                                      Still, I'm impressed. I don't think I've ever gotten 9.3 activity points in one shot in my life. Well done.

                                                                      1. re: JoanN

                                                                        You might be much smaller than me. That 9 points was from only 40 minutes on the elliptical. I was a little surprised it was so many points, but it somewhat lines up with the calories the machine said I burned, so....

                                                                      2. re: Kontxesi

                                                                        You tracked what you ate and counted the points! I think that takes amazing commitment. Good for you. It's just one day out of your whole life. You will bounce right back, I'll bet!

                                                                        ~TDQ

                                                                        1. re: The Dairy Queen

                                                                          I've been steadily going the wrong way ever since the 12 lbs I lost in May, though, so it's kind of my "whole life trajectory" right now. :p This was the first week that I've tracked almost everything in a long time, though, so that's something.

                                                                          1. re: Kontxesi

                                                                            You are not alone, Kontxesi! I have fallen of proverbial wagon and just can't clime back on :( My latest excuse is that I can't get my scale to work and I need to know what I weight before I get started again.. sigh... Very proud of you for tracking again and need to learn from your example!

                                                                            1. re: herby

                                                                              Maybe we should ask roxlet to title the August thread, "This month we all dust ourselves off and climb back onto the proverbial wagon."

                                                                              Maybe if we ALL commit to really getting back to basics as a group, we'll all really do it.

                                                                              I would hope it would be easy for any COTM'ers who want to cook from DH's Change of Appetite. Plus, produce should be plentiful for everyone, even us northerners!

                                                                              ~TDQ

                                                                            2. re: Kontxesi

                                                                              Every day is a new day. In fact, every meal is a new meal. You just proved to yourself that you really can do it! I know how disheartening it is when you feel like you've been doing that long, slow slide back into your old habits, etc. but you really do have the skills and power to change it.

                                                                              ~TDQ