Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Is No Place Sacred?

I was at the gym early this morning, powering through a tough set of deadlifts, followed by exhaustive sets of pull ups when I noticed a maintenance-type guy preparing to hang a framed poster on the wall...

Was it motivational? No. Was it inspiring? No. Did it make me hungry as hell? YES.

There I was. Tired. Sweaty. Hungry and 10 hours into a 16-hour fast and what is this guy hanging on the wall next to the pull up/dip station? A cheery picture of Craisins.

Personally, I love Craisins. I like the tangy-sweet taste they add to my salads. But, being as they're just a step above Mike-n-Ike's, I don't usually keep them around (I can't be trusted near Mike-n-Ike's either.)

I notice a man in a black overcoat sort of overseeing the process and I said to him, "Why don't you just hang up a picture of a candy bar while you're at it?"

He sort of laughs and we get into a discussion about marketing decisions (I won't bore you with that here). The crux of it is, advertisers are losing their audiences and they're paying big bucks for the eyeballs of a captive audience.

This is a new low, even for the traditionally seedy health-club industry and I'm very disappointed in Workout World (in Ocean, NJ) for stooping so low as to profit from people's hunger and lack of discipline by hanging food cues disguised as "healthy foods" all over their club. (There was also a picture of Smucker's Natural Peanut Butter by the dumbell rack). What will appear on the walls next, a frosty pint of Chunky Monkey in the aerobics studio? Maybe a Budweiser poster in the spinning room?

My gym, which was once a refuge from temptation for hundreds of hungry exercisers trying to make the right choices is no longer safe. If you workout at WoW, consider yourself warned.

Check it out: can you tell which of these labels is for Craisins and which is for Mike-n-Ike's (no cheating!) *Both serving sizes are approximately the same size.


Look closely. There is one major differentiating factor that should give this away - Craisins have fiber, Mike-n-Ike's sadly do not.

The crazy thing is that Craisins seem to actually have MORE sugar than their candy cousin! I should tell the guy at the gym to just save time and hang pictures of candy on the walls.

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