21 Day Fix or Weight Watchers?

I come in contact with a lot of people who are either doing Weight Watchers or who are thinking about doing it, and they want to know what the difference is between WW and the 21 Day Fix.  I have done both programs and I have supported dozens of people through the 21 Day Fix, so I feel like I have a pretty good understanding of each and how they differ.

When my son was around 9 months old, I finally made the decision to throw out my excuses and lose the extra weight I had been carrying around.  I was tired and sluggish all of the time, and I knew that I wasn’t the best mom or best wife that I could be.  My unhappiness with my appearance, my lack of confidence, and the way I was feeling on the inside really changed me as a person.  I was impatient, cold, and miserable.  My pre-pregnancy clothes didn’t fit and we had no money to purchase new ones.  My co-worker and friend had great success with Weight Watchers and mentioned that I might enjoy it as well.  

I decided to jump in with both feet in December of 2011 and by April 2012 I had lost 17 pounds.  I enjoyed the program because I am totally a numbers girl.  I loved having a plan and knowing exactly how many points I had each day.  Although it obviously worked for me, I found that I was hungry most of the time because I wasn’t being smart about how I was using my points.  I would eat a lot of carbs and allow myself to have m&ms or other chocolate, which left little room for protein and healthy fats that would keep me full.  My meals certainly weren’t balanced.

With the 21 Day Fix, there is a focus on eating the right foods AND the right amount of food.  It’s not just about portion control, it’s about learning how to fuel your body with the correct foods.  I found that I was very full and satisfied most of the time while following the 21 Day Fix.  That doesn’t mean I didn’t still have some cravings for sugar and other favorite foods, but those weren’t out of hunger.  My husband also follows the plan and rarely complains about being hungry.  Eating a balanced meal encourages your body to let go of excess fat.

Here is a summary of the specifics of each program:

Weight Watchers

  • Monthly fee to access points and tracking system.
  • Use point values to determine servings and portions.  Every food has a point value and you can eat wheat you want, as long as you don’t go above your point total for the day.
  • Weigh and measure your food to determine points.
  • No emphasis on a balanced diet.  Eat whatever you want as long as points add up (WW does encourage clean eating, but it is not required).
  • No workouts included.  Movement is encouraged but WW does not include any structured workouts.
  • Can weigh in and attend meetings with other members in your area.

21 Day Fix

  • One time fee for the program.  Keep the containers and workouts forever.
  • Use color coded containers to measure food.  If it fits, you can eat it.
  • Emphasis on a clean, balanced diet (red= protein, green= veggies, purple= fruit, blue= healthy fats (avocado, nuts, etc), yellow= carbs, orange= dressings, seeds, tsps= oils, nut butters)
  • Seven 30 minute workouts included.  Minimal equipment/space required, workouts done in the privacy of your own home.
  • Access to an online support system & challenge groups.

I strongly believe that everybody is different and what works for one may not work for another.  Only YOU know what is best for you, these are just the facts as I see them.  I honestly feel that success is possible with both programs as long as you are focusing on eating the right foods.  I do like that the 21 Day Fix does not require a monthly membership fee and that it includes 30 minute workouts that can be done in your home.

Which one sounds like a better fit for you?  If the 21 Day Fix sounds like your kind of thing, shoot me a message at erica.tehonica@mac.com so we can chat!