My weight-loss endpoint has hove (hoven? heaved?) into view again, and this time I'm more ready for it: I have made the plan to stay "inside the box" completely precise and concrete.
The endpoint, as my long-suffering readers well know, is to have my waist measurement be 90% or less of my hip measurement. I take these numbers daily, and although they are irritatingly bouncy -- any one measurement of the hips has a play of 1/4 inch; and any one measurement of the waist has a play of 1/2 an inch -- they are the most direct measurement I have of what I'm most interested in: to wit, minimizing my visceral fat while maximizing my muscle mass.
I've hit that endpoint three times: briefly once, and for a couple of weeks twice. I have found it difficult to stay there, and it's possible of course that it's the wrong endpoint: I might wrestle less with 91% or 92%. But I suspect the difficulty is not where the endpoint is, but simply being at the endpoint. The interest goes out of the game, after you've won it.
So the new game, when I get there again, is the game of staying inside the box, that is to say, keeping that number -- which is an 8-day rolling average -- in between 89.5% and 90.5%. And the way I do that is by having two triggers for slightly changing my calorie intake. If I see 89.5 (or smaller) I'll increase my snack from 1/8 of a cup of peanuts and one small banana to 1/4 cup of peanuts and one large banana. If I see 90.6 (or greater) I'll go back to the smaller amounts.
I may of course need to adjust either one of these amounts -- they may not be enough to make me "change direction." But I have enough experience now to know that I can't be far off. If I cross the upper bound while eating the smaller snack, or the lower bound while eating the larger, then I'll know that the amounts need to change. That's not hard.
There's not much glory in "maintenance": but it's where push comes to shove.
The five-year anniversary of when I started this project comes up in May, and I devoutly hope to be inside the box when it does.
Oh there was joy in Wapping when the news flew through the land;
At Maidenhead and Henley there was dancing on the strand.
Rats were roasted whole at Brentford, and at Victoria Dock,
And a day of celebration was commanded in Bangkok.