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I Believe In The Power Of Oops!

I’m a big believer in people learning more from their mistakes than their successes.  I remember one of my first bosses, Betty Crader, having that saying on her wall.  At the time I didn’t know how true it was when I was a teenager but now that I’m *cough* “older” I know it couldn’t be more true.

Every Saturday morning at 11am I attend my Weight Watchers meeting in Towson.  I’ve long said I think one of the biggest reasons Weight Watchers is so successful is due to the great information shared at these meetings.  Not just from the leader but all that attend (no matter how long they have worked the program everyone there has a different perspective and wonderful wisdom to share).  This past weekend was no different, I sat in the meeting all ready to start taking notes that would eventually become this blog post.  What’s that saying “best laid plans of mice and men” or maybe “man makes plans and God laughs”?  Interesting thing was the topic was “believe”.  Well as my post states, I believe in the power of oops!

For Christmas I got the brand new Asus Transformer Prime tablet.  The geek in me is loving it beyond words.  I was using it at the meeting to take notes (a lot easier than on my smartphone).  I used an app that came with the tablet but didn’t really like how it had been functioning.  So Wednesday night after an upgrade to Ice Cream Sandwich (the latest version of Android) I started looking for other note taking apps.  Downloaded several and tried them out.  They were better than the original app I was using so I decided to uninstall the first app.  OOPS!  I completely forgot all my notes were there and away they went.

So what did I learn?  I learned that I’m human and I make mistakes (or bad judgement calls especially late at night – I was up late due to my dogs waking me and not being able to go back to sleep).  I learned that when sleep deprived don’t do anything rash.  I learned that I should not only backup my documents on my laptop (something I already do) but on my tablet as well.  So first thing this morning I performed a backup of my tablet.  Hopefully I won’t need to use it but it is better to be safe than sorry.

Sorry my post isn’t so much about all the great information shared at our Weight Watchers meeting but I think we can all learn something here and apply it to our journey.  Remember we all make mistakes – acknowledge them, learn from them but most importantly forgive yourself for making them.


Life Just Got a Little Easier

Life for those of us who shop and try our best to stick to our points just got a little easier.  Weight Watchers just released a new app for Android and iPhone that is a real-time saver at the grocery store!

The new Weight Watchers Barcode Scanner app scans the UPC barcode on packages and then automatically calculates the PointsPlus value.  On top of that greatness alone it will allow you to track right from the app so you don’t have to get out of it and open the other app or use the mobile site.  It also keeps a history of items you scanned (helpful if you use certain products on a regular basis).  And if for some reason it can’t find the UPC barcode in the database it offers to bring up the calculator so you can figure it out manually.

Not only all of these great features but it also allows you to add it to a shopping list!  I really love this because I’ve been playing with several apps lately that keep your grocery list on your phone via an app.  I’ve really liked ZipList as it also puts the items in order by whatever store you are shopping.  It also has a list of recipes sites (not the official Weight Watchers site but one that uses the PointPlus program) and you can click on a link that will add the ingredients from the recipe into the shopping list.  But with ZipList if I came across a new items at the store that I didn’t know the points value for I had to exit the app and then go over to the Weight Watchers app to use the calculator.  Now with the new barcode scanner app from WW I can have both my shopping list, scanner and calculator all in one place.

The is the best early Christmas present WW could have given a person like me.  Thank you!

Salad Lovers Beware

Many of us and not just those on Weight Watchers love salads.  The latest salmonella scare has hit bagged salads.   So double-check that bag before you make your lunch or dinner!

While on the topic of salads I thought I’d mention a few tips about making them so you don’t blow all your points.  If you are using eTools you maybe familiar with the “cheat sheet” sections.  I find them very enlightening because they teach me how to make better choices in regards to certain foods (such as the grill, cocktails, Mexican, etc.).  They also have one for salad savvy.

Don’t fall into the trap that all salads are healthy or low points because they have lots of veggies.  Things like chicken, cheese, avocados, and croutons can suddenly make a 0 point meal bloom into 20 something points!  I learned the hard way early on in my weight loss journey.  I was at lunch with a friend and in too much of a hurry to consult my eTools or use my smartphone to surf for nutritional information for the restaurant.  We were at La Madeleine and I saw the Spinach Salad with Chicken and thought not only yummy but should be low point.  That was until I looked at their nutritional information later….10 points just for the salad.  Okay, I can handle that.  Maybe a bit more than I normally allow myself for lunch but still a healthier choice than some menu items.  That was until I looked up the dressing!  I got the balsamic vinaigrette thinking it was a better choice.  I took my smartphone with the Weight Watchers app and was appalled at the  number.   Not every restaurant does salads the same way.  SO a spinach salad at one place maybe high in points and not at another – make sure you check and don’t assume.

A trick I learned long ago that sticks with me now is a big help in keeping those salad points down.  Make sure you get the dressing on the side.  Many places are offering that as the default way salads come but make sure you ASK (see my post on asking).   Another great tip is to either take a fork full of salad and dip just one small part into the salad dressing or even better yet just dip the fork into the dressing first then stab your salad.  You will certainly consume less fat and calories from the dressing this way and the salad will still taste great!