For whatever reason, people are constantly trying to figure out how to do Weight Watchers on their own. We have some ideas for you, but it first makes sense to outline the strengths of Weight Watchers before you decide to set out on your own.
The primary service that Weight Watchers provides, is that they help people learn portion control. If you are going to succeed on your own, you will need to first master that, and understand how a portion relates to calories.
If you are going to lose weight on your own, in addition to getting a handle on portion control, you will need some sort of mechanism to make better food choices. You will need a simple system that guides you towards certain foods and away from others. The new PEERtrainer Cheat System provides a good starting point. It contains a list of unlimited foods, foods to start to move away from, and a very basic system to help you keep track of your portions.
It can be download here for free, and you can read it in about 10 minutes and process the main ideas.
Drilling down a bit further, beyond the main concepts of portion control and better choices, you'll need to decide whether or not you want to follow their system, or do portion control on your own.
If you decide you really like the Points System, know that there are many people who are Weight Watchers lifers. It works for them, for the way they live. This is something you'll need to figure out on your own.
There are four fundamental areas you need to focus on to successfully do Weight Watchers on your own. Following these steps, combined with an accountability tool like PEERtrainer can give you a very broad toolset. This approach also allows you to practice "Diet Fusion"- imagine counting points while you follow Dr. Fuhrman's Eat For Health!
(1) The company sells a line of electronic trackers that you take with you to calculate points and keep you on track. This is really an excellent accountability tool. You can find them periodically on Amazon, but they sell out very quickly. If you see something for sale and you think you want it, it may not be around for long:
(2) You will need a scale, (and if you don't have one get one:) You really need to weigh in once per week, and it makes sense to "make friends with the scale." Getting on the scale helps you confront reality. If you count points and measure your progress, you will be surprised at how well you can do.
Weight Watchers WW43/WW43D Memory Glass Electronic Scale
(3) Part of the power of Weight Watchers are their tips and recipes that you get in meetings and online. This very practical advice helps you make changes in your real life. The company has some books and publications that can help you follow the program on your own. The Momentum Program recipes are particularly good from what we hear:
Best of Weight Watchers Magazine : Over 145 Tasty Favorites--All 9 POINTS or Less
Simple Goodness: More Than 100 Quick & Easy Recipes
Weight Watchers Magazine
(4) You also need to focus on the mental aspect of weight loss which for many people is the most difficult. And you will want to get some help. Most of you know about our coaching programs, and we do recommend following the Points system as part of our PEERtrainer coaching program: