Her Views · Marketing

exercise vs. the holidays

It’s that wonderful time of year when we all tend to eat more and exercise less. Unless you count walking twelve miles across a parking lot and through a crowded shopping mall as exercise. Which I do. Anyway, I have a genius idea about how to radically improve our thinking about exercise.

But first, a confession. While I’m fortunate to be tall and fairly slender, I’m also fairly…oh, what’s the word… Lazy. (It’s that whole thing about taking for granted what we have, I guess.) But when one is “of a certain age,” and has a family history of heart disease that goes back for two generations, being slender doesn’t stop french fries from clogging your arteries.

Since I’ve been unemployed, I have made the effort to walk vigorously almost every day. I don’t really like it all that much. Which is what gave me my genius idea. The labels on the back of food items at the grocery store display “Nutritional Facts.” A bunch of little meaningless numbers that are hard to quantify. What’s the difference between six grams of fat or 1,000 calories? All I really want to know now is how many more blocks I’ll have to walk for whichever is worse.

So…I think it would be far more effective if labeling compared the food you want against the exercise you don’t want.
One bagel and cream cheese = 1 mile vigorous walking and 25 sit-ups. Not bad.
Two slices of pizza = 2 miles of jog/walking. I’d think twice about that.
One head of lettuce = 3 hours laying on the couch watching television. Oooh! Buy more lettuce!
Burger and fries = probably jogging, sit-ups and lifting heavy things. That’s just not gonna happen.

The label should read, “Deterrent Facts.” That would be useful information.

5 thoughts on “exercise vs. the holidays

  1. Sometimes they actually have equations like that in magazines such as Family Circle. Except for the little comments at the end (“Not bad”), of course. : )


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