Media Dieting

“Someone who doesn’t read gets about the same education as someone who can’t. Where you get your information seems of vital importance to how you see the world.” – Matt Hart

This morning, while eating breakfast with Aral at a local cafe, I overheard someone bragging. The guy, sitting on the opposite side of a low wall just to the east of the diner counter, seemed to be employing this tactic to impress the woman across from him.

“I don’t read anything ya can’t trust,” he said in a bellicose drawl that appeared to lack volume control.

She countered, asking him what he knew he could “trust.”

Much of his answer was swallowed along with forkfulls from a heaping mound of biscuits and gravy, but I surmised that he was disinterested in the “lame-stream” media to such an extent that he chose only to get his news from a single source. You guessed it, FOX.

At first I had trouble digesting that any television broadcast might somehow be confused with reading. But then I recalled that we all build our own narrative and if the woman sitting across from this guy wasn’t going to say anything it certainly wasn’t my place to intervene.

Next up in my internal monologue, I started to think of my visceral reaction when I encounter something that a) I know is patently wrong — an obvious bald face lie told by straight faced liars in the hope of manipulating my narrative — and b) things that I suspect when I read them in particular because they conflict with the narrative of my life.

The former is actually less offensive to me. When it’s an obvious manipulation I guess it is also easy enough to roll over it like a speed bump. Regardless, if it’s snake oil or promises made to break, when I encounter this sort of misinformation I simply chart a course around it. My narrative stays intact, I stay happy.

The latter however can be problematic. Case in point, I’ve been using Hammer Nutrition’s Recoverite after longer runs and workouts for sometime. Their list of claims about what this product can do is short enough:

  • Restores muscle glycogen
  • Rebuilds muscle tissue
  • Reduces post-exercise soreness

What has been bugging me of late is the claim to reduce “post-exercise soreness.” The issue arrises because I can’t for the life of me find anything which medically supports this claim. Sure enough, glycogen can medically/nutritionally be shown to enhance recovery and whey protein isolate is known to be one of the best ways to quickly repair muscle tissue. And despite this claim I’m usually sore after a good long run through the woods. My inclination is to imagine how much more sore I might be if I didn’t dump 200 cc of what could be powdered money into two quarts of water and down them like an antidote to deadly poison. I know this is because I’m lazy.

Simultaneously, I crave and fear testing this hypothesis. If I need it in order to deal with DOMS, that without Recoverite would be world’s worse, self-testing is just going to suck for me. Yet, while I’ve been jogging along I’ve also caught myself wondering if I’m just wasting money on what amounts to little more than dried cottage cheese with strawberry flavoring.

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