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After a few days of unsuccessfully following SW I have some Qs.

Discussion in 'Slimming World' started by impossible, 10 January 2014 Social URL.

  1. impossible

    impossible Member

    I had my meeting on Tuesday and was feeling optimistic. However every day I have gone over my syns and probably had an average of about 25, possibly even more. I stopped keeping count. I have a few questions:

    1. Anyone have any good suggestions for lunch on the go? Are there any places you know that are good for buying lunches that are free or low in syns? I am out a lot in the day and normally have sandwiches but they are sort of off limits now unless I use that small brown bread. Ugh.

    2. If you have a meal out planned in a place you can't avoid fattening food (indian/chinese), is there anyway you can account for this? For example with weight watchers you can save up some points so you won't be breaking your diet. Is there anything you can do about this in SW or do you just have to break the diet for a day? When all my friends are going out to an indian like they were earlier in the week, I refuse to say no and be left out just because I'm on a diet.

    3. Are there any snacks that you may recommend that hit the spot? That is my main weakness at the moment. I can't find anything low in syns that actually hits my sweet tooth so I just end up eating chocolate still.

    So far, I'm not really enjoying the diet. I'm starting to think the point counting method of weight watchers is better for me, even though I always hear SW has more success. I'm not finding it as easy to follow as I thought, mainly because I think it's inconvenient. I have to plan everything in advance and if I'm out and about I struggle to think of what I can grab as a meal. I always hear that it is a great diet because you're never hungry, which is true, I can see how you would never be hungry - but it really rules out a lot of foods with absurd syn values, so I'd never be able to eat them. I don't like feeling restricted from different foods. I feel like there must be something I'm missing becuase I haven't heard anything bad about it so typical me it doesn't work for :(

    Any advice?
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  3. Llamasoks

    Llamasoks Gold Member

    Hey sweet, Welcome.

    1) Depends what you mean by on the go, if it's just stuff you can make before then how about rolls? you can have 30g cheese, most deli meat is free, lighter than light mayo is only 1 syn, a small wholemeal roll can be your HeB, then you can take sarnies. Also, some crisps have low syn values if you need on the go snacky bits. Also some of the Tesco pre-packed salads, like the hoisin noodle one and the felafel one are very low Syn!

    2) Eating out wise, there are always substitutes you can make, indians aren't actually that high, what's your favorite? I know a lot of the spicier tomato based ones are relatively low fer eating out, and if you know in advance that you're going you could always save up some Syns to have a few extras on that day. Chinese is okay too, mushroom chow mein is only 6 Syns, beef and mushroom is 4.5.

    3) I'm less use with as not really got a sweet-tooth, but meringues are only 3 Syns each, great for snacking or dessert with some fat free yoghurt. Pink and White wafers are quite low, Oreos too surprisingly! Again - crisps if you fancy savoury, Quavers, space raiders, wotsits and velvet crunch are all under 5Syns a pack.

    Unfortunately, the reason the foods with high syn values are ruled out are probably because those are the foods that caused peoples weight issues in the first place, you're never going to find a diet that says you can eat what you ate before, because that's why you want/need to diet. The good thing about SW is that a lot of the foods you liked before can be made in a healthier way - you can make Syn free curries and onion bahji's and syn free rice and chips with chowmein for Chinese substitute.

    It's not so much restricting as it is about control, you can still have a Tesco sarnie, or a Chinese, just not everyday, if you really sturggle when you're out, have a light wholemeal pre-packed choice with a healthy filling, but any diet will take hard work, there is no easy as pie way.

    I'd say give it a good few weeks and stick to plan 100%, if you're not happy there are lots of others out there, personally I love SW, but it doesn't suit everyone, but at least give it a good shot.
  4. Llamasoks

    Llamasoks Gold Member

    Also, if you tell us some of the specific foods you're after or craving, I'm sure we can help with recipes and ideas?
  5. coughdrops

    coughdrops Silver Member

    With SW planning in advance is key I find. The weeks that I've not planned my shopping, made sure I've syn free stuff in etc are the weeks I don't do well. There have been a few of those weeks lately, but I'm getting back on track now.

    I think you'll have to put a bit of time into planning and preparing your meals, it doesn't really allow for popping into a convenience store or the like. Once you get used to the plan, you'll find it easier to pick up things.

    When you say that you're out during the day, do you have access to a kitchen e.g. in your work? There are quite a few lunches if you have a kettle or microwave like a Mug Shot, jacket potatoes, reheating home-made soup etc.
  6. krupskaya

    krupskaya Gold Member

    Good advice from Coughdrops here. I think the issue is that you can't eat as you've always eaten and expect to lose weight. You do need to significantly change your eating habits to lose. There's a fair bit of cooking from scratch needed with SW. Plus you can't rely on bought sandwiches as they're way too high in syns. There are lots of lunch threads on here though.
  7. kingleds

    kingleds Gold Member

    if you are out and about then buy a food flask and make up different soups from free foods- there are loads you can make. Then you just heat a portion up in the microwave in the morning, chuck it in the food flask and eat it when you get a moment.

    I travel for my job, and so I never rely on being able to get anything. I always have a tin of free ravioli in my car 'just in case' or a mugshot. Also, if you go to M&S you can buy a salad and some chicken/ham/salmon/prawns and stay on plan. It doesn't have to be sandwiches.

    If all that feels like too much hard work then maybe you are better off with WW. That not meant to sound harsh at all, but WW is more convenient if you don't like/want to cook from scratch.
  8. Gwella

    Gwella Silver Member

    I think you have to set yourself limits for how often you will go 'off plan' by buying a quick convenient lunch, or going out for dinner. It is not a plan where you can do these things too often because ready-made and processed food does tend to be high in syns. That is often why we got fat in the first place so it makes sense to me that SW tries to address these habits by focusing on a return to preparing your own. I have come to a balance where I usually allow myself one meal really off-plan each week, so maybe 50 syns when out with friends. The rest of the time I aim to have very low-syn meals and use my syns for sauces and treats. You have to see how different things affect your losses and ability to stick to the plan.

    I have only bought lunch once since starting the plan. Taking my own is easy for me because we have a microwave at work and I just heat up leftovers from the night before. However I also have a few cold meals a week including when I have evening rehearsals, so I make lots of cold salads. Good ones for me are mini pasta with chopped up cucumber, pepper, spring onion, feta and olives and a lemony dressing (a few syns if you use the feta as your hexa). Or a selection of cold roasted vegetables with salad leaves and either cold mackerel or chickpeas. These are just some examples, there are loads in the recipes thread and as kingleds says, you can also take warm stuff in a flask if it's sloppy. You can find a few things in shops, for example some of the M&S salads are 5-6 syns (and their grilled calamari is free but expensive!), or you can get plain boiled eggs in Morrisons and fruit salad in many places. But for me these aren't as satisfying as a big interesting salad I make myself so I'd rather use syns on wine/chocolate.

    If you go out for a meal that is definitely going to be more than 15 syns (which it usually will) there are three ways to deal with this:
    a) Go off plan, eat what you want, and get back on it afterwards. Myself I save this for really big occasions like my bday and Christmas.
    b) Flexisyn. This means that before you go out, you figure out how many syns you need to enjoy yourself - that might be anything from 20 to 200. Then you either figure out exactly what you're having in advance and stick to it (easiest when menus are online) or you count down as you eat. Then the next day you go back to plan as normal with 15 syns max. Nowadays if I go for a curry I have a prawn bhuna and plain rice and a small beer and that is well under 30 syns, and my appetite has shrunk so I couldn't really eat more than that anyway. If you do this all the time you won't be successful with weight loss but I have got away with a flexisyn day (anywhere between 25 and 100 syns) most weeks tbh, even if perhaps my losses would be faster if I didn't do it. Often you can get away with more the more you have to lose.
    b) Weekly syns. Instead of working out your syns daily, as 5-15, you allow yourself up to 105 a week and therefore can save day to day. This is more like the WW approach (or it was a few years ago when I did it). I don't think this is officially endorsed by SW but some people do it. The risk is that you will feel restricted on all the other days and 'blow' your plan by eating your syns as normal, then feel like you've failed at the diet and go overboard and binge.

    Finally, about snacks. A lot of people say their tastes change a lot while on the plan so you may find your struggles with cravings decrease a lot. I never thought I'd be one of those annoying people who can enjoy a few squares of dark chocolate instead of a brick of Dairy Milk but I'm getting to that stage now. A few hints for low-syn sweet snacks: fruit (yes really! I've got really into melon and pomelo, it's not always more expensive to have a good mix of fancier fruits), sugarfree jellies, fatfree yoghurts (eg Mullerlights are synfree, myself I prefer Danios which don't have sweeteners so are about 1-3 syns), Mikado sticks (0.5 syns each), Freddo bars (5 syns), Mini Milk ice creams (1.5 syns). Have a look through the treats sections of the book and you might find some swaps that will keep you below 15 a day.

    In WW you are often allowed to have foods which would be very high-syn on SW, but you usually have to cut down on other things which is why some people say SW keeps them fuller/healthier as there is a wider range of foods you can eat as much as you like, with the payoff of a stricter limit on syns. If you don't like to prepare your own food then WW may be easier, if you do cook then WW can get annoying as you have to weigh and measure a lot. I also feel like WW isn't such a long-term route to health but everyone's different.

    Wow I've really rambled on here but you're clearly struggling and need some info on how people make this work so you can figure out whether the changes you'd need to make are changes that you can live with. At the end of the day, we all have to change to lose weight so it's a question of which ones are acceptable to you!
    coughdrops likes this.
  9. jessiepie1982

    jessiepie1982 Full Member

    To be honest I think with slimming world you have to be pretty into it for it to work. It is quite a life change and gives you a completely different attitude to food. I only restarted nearly two weeks ago and stuck to it completely apart from two low sugar days (diabetes type 1) I don't actually want anything bad in my body now. You need to be in a good place and be positive. Stop thinking of what you can't have and focus on all the lovely slimming world food you can have! It's easy to talk yourself out of things, make excuses.. But it's only ourselves who are losing out when we get like that. It takes time and effort to lose weight and get healthy. But it will be worth it! Focus on your goal! For me I just think of how amazing I feel when I am slimmer and how much better life feels good luck !! Xx
  10. neraksarrab

    neraksarrab Full Member

    this reply (& the rest of it) is brilliant advice and very helpful, thanks
  11. impossible

    impossible Member

    Firstly, thank for you for all the replies. They are really useful!

    I understand why some are high syn, but to give an example of fish. I love fish and I swear by it for dieting. I get a pack of two 'lightly dusted' fish from Tesco which are about 220 cals each. I have one with some veg, so calorie wise it's a great meal. Fish is free on SW, but with the addition of the light dusting of breadcrumbs I checked on the syn thing online and it says 8 syns for one! I don't know how that makes any sense, but of course I have to go with it if I use SW. I have dieted a lot in the past and I have always been controlled by calories. I guess my problem is that I can't stop thinking about them, and I don't know if I like a diet where you don't look at them. It just feels strange.
    Sadly I have no microwave or anything as I'm a final year student so when I say I'm out I mean I'm sat in the library all day! I am considering taking a flask of something though.
    I know I can't eat what I've always eaten, I think I'm just struggling to adjust to the syn values not corresponding with calories all the time. As I said above, I think I'm too used to calorie counting and I'm a bit out of my comfort zone not having to think about them.
    Flask is a great idea. I've been meaning to get one so thanks for reminding me. It doesn't sound harsh at all, it's what I'm thinking too. WW is hard work but I feel it is more similar to the method I'm used to. However I really like my SW consultant. I'm thinking of just going to SW every week but following a different plan! I know that sounds strange but I guess it shouldn't matter as long as I'm losing weight if it motivates me.
    Thanks very much for this post. Very detailed and helpful indeed. I have to agree that I think the main positive of SW is not feeling hungry. I think I'm going to treat the next two weeks as a sort of test to see what methods of dieting I prefer - more like SW or more like WW, and then decide.
    Lovely motivational post, thank you. I'm glad it's working for you :)

    Just to comment to everyone - I'm not expecting to have lost any weight by Tuesday (my next meeting), however I'm treating this week as sort of a test run to see what methods are easier for me. Today I have ditched the SW plan and moved onto calorie counting, limiting myself to 1500 calories, just to see how I go. So far it's definitely easier for me. I've had 400, so plenty left to enjoy a nice tea. I should clarify that as much as I go on about calorie counting, I don't actually like the WW diet and I don't think I'd ever go to their meetings, especially with the new propoints thing. The most success I've had in the past with dieting was when I stuck to 1800 cals a day and exercised 3 x half hour a week. Then I went on holiday and broke everything. So for me it's more a method of sticking to my plans and even if I find the SW diet hard to follow and may not stick to it, I found my first group very motivational with lovely people there too, so I plan on staying there no matter what plan I'm following behind the scenes. I guess it's just a bit of trial and error to find something I find simple to stick to and convenient for my lifestyle, as well as having the boost from going to group (which is a totally new thing to me). I WILL lose weight this year and fit into my old clothes again :)
  12. But it isn't just a light dusting of breadcrumbs. It is oil and different types of flour:

    Cod (Fish) (79%),Rapeseed Oil ,Wheat Flour ,Maize Flour ,Dried Potato ,Cornflour ,Wheat Starch ,Salt ,Spices ,Dried Skimmed Milk ,Wheat Gluten ,Garlic Powder ,Onion Powder ,Yeast
  13. Happy Holidays

    Happy Holidays Gold Member

    I've followed this thread & you've rec'd some excellent help & advice, you've even commented on the wonderful comments, saying you'll get a flask.

    Then you say SW won't work for you & you've ditched it today for calorie counting, honestly, erm well no SW won't work if you don't try it. I have no idea what benefit you will get from paying to go to a SW class & not follow the plan.

    Yes it will be difficult being in the library or class most of the day, but it's not much different than those of us stuck in an office all day.

    Take a look at peoples food diaries on here, stop thinking about calories, yes it is hard but that is what is stopping you believing SW works. Look at all the motivational photos on here, that just shows it does work. I've been at target almost 4 years, SW works, but stop working if you don't follow the plan.
  14. Llamasoks

    Llamasoks Gold Member

    I get what you mean about calories, sometimes after a 100% SW day I find myself totting up my daily calories, not to follow a rule, just out of curiosity, it does match up mostly - even on a day where it feels like I've eaten a lot, I'm still only on about 1500 - some days less some days more. The lightly dusted fillets I've had before, I actually thought they were 6...oops, but 8 isn't the worst for a decent meal that you like, how about buying some cod or haddock fillets and using your HeB to sprinkle some breadcrumbs and cheese with some herbs? Just as tasty but low syn! There are always quick and easy ways to adapt meals you love into lower syn ones.

    I really suggest trying it for a week, and the maybe if you are stuck in calorie land, add them up at the end of the day, you'll see you're not using as many as you think you are! If you honestly like to eat, it really is a good diet.

  15. Gwella

    Gwella Silver Member

    Just a quick note about the fish: yes, sometimes that is a bit annoying. I don't really buy that sort of thing now as I'd rather have plain fish and some chocolate! But to some extent I do agree with the SW reasoning: it would be more filling to have plain fish and some potatoes. Possibly very slightly more calories than the breaded fish, but stuff that will keep you full and stop you eating other stuff!
  16. neraksarrab

    neraksarrab Full Member

    i'm not fastidious about calories, but keep a loose running record - i use a free iphone app that you can set your metabolism and basic stats and enter calories consumed to the nearest 50. It gives a daily +/- calories and how this equates to weight loss/gain. its free, quite motivating and seems pretty accurate
    Last edited: 12 January 2014
  17. SJC91

    SJC91 Member

    Have you thought about making your own bread crumbs? Literally get a couple of slices of the warburtons wholemeal bread we are allowed as a HEB mixed it up in a blender. Then
    brush the fish with some egg white and coat over the breadcrumbs. Bake in foil then near the unwrap the foil so it goes crispy.
  18. ACH

    ACH Full Member

    I was a student and I graduated in July last year....library tips from me

    - tuna pasta salad or chicken pasta salad
    - fruit salad and yogurt
    - punnet of grapes to pick at whilst studying
    - curly wurly bar (6syns) as an afternoon pick me up when sugars were low and I hit my afternoon revision slump

    also, I tend to tot up my cals on an app just to be nosy and everyday my calroies are about 1500 sometimes more sometimes less but my fat content which is what SW is about it ridiculously low! It's not just calories you have to be concerned with its fat and sugar and SW takes care of that for you because it's a healthy plan.

    if your not in the mind set it won't work. Good luck
  19. Lucky7

    Lucky7 Gold Member

    One of my favourite uni packed lunch food was a bit like spanish omelette but made with supernoodles (the noodles hold it all together). Now I'm a teacher I still make it when I'm taking the kids out on trips...

    2 eggs
    1 pack of the chicken (and herb?) LOW FAT supernoodles (HAS to be the LOW FAT ones, as the others are high in syns) made up to instructions
    Slices Mushrooms (cooked and excess moisiture drained)
    Slices of peppers cooked
    Slices of onion cooked
    Syn free meat or quorn pieces as preferred (if using quorn, I crumble in a chicken oxo)
    HEx of grated low fat cheddar
    Italian style seasoning (level teaspoon)
    Salt & pepper
    I love some slices if jalepeno (sp) in mine as well

    Mix all the ingredients (apart from the cheese) in a bowl and combine
    Fry in a frying pan over medium heat til almost set
    Sprinkle over the cheddar and spray with frylight (this stops the half fat cheddar charring)
    Grill top until golden brown

    This is delicious hot or cold, with veg or salad.
    It is SYN FREE. You don't need to count the calories :D
  20. Lucky7

    Lucky7 Gold Member

    OR - I bet the turkey pizza thing (I made it and ate it for tea - bloomin' gorgeous) would make a great pack up as well. If you can resist eating it all when you cook it anyway!!

    Turkey pizza melts - Recipes - Slimming World
  21. LizHL

    LizHL Member

    Hi Impossible, I take it you are at the same uni as me if you are in Preston. I am a first year and spend a lot of time there. I saw the soup in the café in the library the other day, it always seems to be quite healthy and veg based, and looks homemade, and the rolls are small that come with it. Also less than 2 quid for jacket potato and beans in Foster refectory.

    I am only staring Sw today, but those are the option I'm planning on, but I know the library has limited food options. The soup is lovely though.

    My daughter is a 3rd year, hope your dissertation is going well :)

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