Food, Running

Chocolate As Running Motivation

Like the Ninja Turtle, some of you runners may have come across the article titled Would Chocolate Motivate You To Run? published a few days ago on Runnersworld online.

Now, unless you have an allergy to chocolate (in which case, our deepest sympathies), it’s probably fair to say that you, like the Ninja Turtle, are raising an eyebrow, wondering “Is rain wet? Is the surface of the sun hot? Is there anything one will NOT do for chocolate?”

Most importantly, has science really run out of important questions to ask, problems to solve, or creative expressions to… express, that they’ve resorted to asking self-evident questions like that? News flash: most runners are indiscriminate garbage disposal units, especially after a long run – anything that is not nailed down onto the table will likely find its way into our mouths. So asking if chocolate, just about the world’s favouritest food, would motivate people to run is inane, and conducting a scientific study on that is bad science because hello? Confirmation bias.

OK, now the Ninja Turtle’s vented on the premise of the study, she’s actually pretty excited about the study’s actual details. The participants of this RMIT University study weren’t just receiving plain old boring chocolate. No, the chocolate was to be 3D printed into fun shapes or names. Just look at that!

Better yet, according to the researcher himself, ““the more they exercise, the better the quality of chocolate will be printed out which they get to enjoy as a reflective reward of their physical activity’’.

Holy sh*t! Now the Ninja Turtle wants to know where she can sign up to be a test subject for studies like this. Getting 3D printed chocolate smileys for racking up the miles is cool enough for the Ninja Turtle to ignore the researcher’s almost-insulting question of whether using food as an incentive will encourage people to do more physical exercise (what the heck are we? lab rats?)

OK so fine, the Ninja Turtle thinks this is a pretty damn cool study, if only because 3D printed chocolates are involved, and she has only one modification to suggest: screw the quality and correlate the quantity of chocolate dispensed to the physical effort. It’s a scientific fact that runners fantasize about post-run meals while running, and the longer the run, the bigger, tastier and more elaborate the fantisized meal must be. Also, whoever heard of eating only 30g of chocolate? That’s just cruel.

Now, the Ninja Turtle is off to reward herself for this morning’s 10-miler with a nice block of Belgian chocolate she bought in Bruges last month.

To read the University’s press release on this research, click here.


2 thoughts on “Chocolate As Running Motivation

  1. Mandy Maidment-Hodges says:

    Thanks, Jo.
    LOVE your work, as usual.

    Sorry to be SO slow in commenting. I am very bad/good at that!! Probably because I should write in french, but am too lazy.
    I have to tell you (probably not for the first time), that I think of you EVERY DAY, particularly, at Para Hills, when I weigh myself on YOUR weight scales. By the way, I am NOT happy with what they tell me!!

    Jeff & I try to do 2x20km bike rides/week at Aldinga Beach. He may fit in another at Para Hills every now & then also. Last week, we did a slow 16ks with his sister & brother-in-law, followed by a 30km ride from Pt Willunga to Sellicks Beach & around Aldinga. It was TOO much for my hips, I’m afraid, but I’m still alive!

    Did I tell you that Laura will be playing in Brouges again? If there are no injuries or problems, she should be there for 8 months. Tim will go with her & do some architectural work from there. He has a couple of private jobs to work on. They will pack up their stuff & rent out their beautiful house at Clarence Park. So that will be a small income- hopefully at least $500/week. (They have been advised that $600 is within the boundaries!!)
    Will I be fit enough to visit them in their 2 bedroom appartment? If so, I would certainly visit you, if possible.
    How are you & Guillaume getting along? What plans do you have for 2015/16? How did he cope when you were in Singapore?
    I still don’t Skype Mirella😩 I do that at Tim’s occasionally.

    What are you training for at the moment?

    Just remember I think of you always, talk about your endeavours, & pass on some blogs to Ben’s wife, Jess.

    Love to you both. Keep up the great work & HAVE FUN.


    Sent from my iPhone

  2. I want in too!

    Years ago when I was living at home I stumbled across an Easter bunny my mom had left on the kitchen counter for me.

    In my mind I recall the poor bunny trapped inside its box as my shadow looked ominously over it. His candy eye unblinking at me. But much like the poor chained up goat next to the T-Rex in Jurassic Park, its fate was sealed.

    With a mighty roar and gnashing of incisors I set upon my prey. The site was awesome in its unabashed goriness and in its ruthlessly efficient manner.

    A moment later the sun shone once more upon the kitchen counter. But alas the bunny was gone. The only things indicating its former presence being an empty cardboard box and the rather jaunty baby blue ribbon that once adorned the bunny’s neck.

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