What's Good?

The week's food and fitness technology news, and an obligatory complaint about the heat and humidity

Happy Friday! What's good?

I'm happy to report that my last few runs have been good! And that's sort of a shock to me as my last few runs have been on the treadmill. I'm trying to be at peace with this — reframing how I think about the "dreadmill" probably means stopping using that word. The gym I joined has an indoor track, so that's an option too. Running in place for an hour or running in a quarter-mile loop for an hour — uggggh. I mean, yay. I love running, right?

I'll get up early tomorrow and Sunday so that I can run outside before it gets too hot and humid. (Well, it'll be humid, regardless.) The Washington Post says perhaps I should consider aqua jogging. Mmmmm, I'm not so sure.

According to The NYT, "For a Better Workout, Trick Your Brain,"  and while I have discovered that watching a movie on the treadmill does indeed make the time go by a little more quickly, I'm always a bit reluctant to embrace the "trick your brain" "trick" — when it comes to exercising or to eating or to anything TBH. Why are we so committed to the idea that being healthy has to involve restriction and deception?

The heat and the humidity are still getting the best of me, although my Garmin tells me I am 87% adjusted to the weather (LOL) and I should continue to run outside in temperatures over 72° in order to further acclimate (LOL). Related: "One Runner Followed His Watch’s AI Training Plans for a Month. Here’s What Happened."

(I always seem to say “I have an essay in the works about…” — because I have so many ideas for this newsletter!! But I have an essay in the works about algorithmically-driving training plans versus the one-size-fits-all templates for sale online versus having a human coach. Again: how much do we let technology dictate how we move?)

I’ve long used free and openly licensed images in my work, but I decided to get a subscription to iStock photo. (Thanks paid subscribers!) This was one of the options for “robot running.” WTF is going on here? Why is the guy in a suit and tie and racing with an IV drip? Seems a bit of an unfair race, no? … ...

In other fitness and sports (technology) news: World Cup Soccer! "Team ACL: The growing women’s soccer club that no player wants to join." Apparently men play soccer too? Who knew! "An NFL linebacker quit football to sell Pokémon cards, now he’s making millions." Man versus pickleball."The Unbelievable Comeback Story Of Elizabeth Robinson Schwartz, Olympic Heroine And Accident Victim." "Inside the world of L.A.’s gym-fluencer ecosystem." "Your 6 a.m. Workout Is Crushing Your Brain Health," says Inc. (It's not. Capitalism "grind culture" — the kind that Inc often lauds — might be, though.) "Swimming the Lordly Hudson, All 315 Miles of It."  Elsewhere in the water: "A Long, Shining River of Verse, Flowing From a Rower and Writer." Lifeguard certification is not great. A very Slate take: "Against Exercise Machines."

This week in food (and food technology): Taco Johns has given up its "Taco Tuesday" trademark to avoid a legal fight with Taco Bell. Those of us who are solidly Team Orca probably need to be solidly no-salmon. A very NYT restaurant review: "Mischa’s $29 Hot Dog Is Obnoxious. It’s Also Lovable."  (We live quite close to Rudy's Bar & Grill — IYKYK — which means we're perhaps more likely to go for the free hot dog than the $29 one. Or, okay, maybe we'll do both.) "The contentious history of the six-foot sandwich." I feel like the whole point of releasing a limited edition food or flavor is to garner headlines like this: "Cheerios fans and another limCheerios offers hope to fans begging the brand to keep limited-edition flavor ‘all year round’." "Should You Choose Huel or Soylent When You Want to Drink Your Food?" asks Lifehacker. Shrug emoji. "Meet the Chefs Who Feed Beyoncé and Lizzo on Tour." WaPo on the Brooklyn Stew. (I read about it first on Cafe Anne, which is one of my favorite Substacks, I will say.)

And WTF do we think is going on in this illustration?...

The week in "wellness": Medical racism. Aspartame panic. Alcohol panic. Pooping panic. Ozempic hype. "1 in 4 Kids Are on a Diet — But Why?" asks Laura Thomas.  “This Barbie is fed up with body policing," writes Mikala Jamison. "Is the World Ready for Another Goop?" asks The New York Times. Sure. Why not.