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Rant About a Gym Giving Away Tootsie Rolls

Fittingly Mad: Tootsie Rolls at My Gym!

So I just checked out a new gym in my area and saw something that really annoyed me. A bucket of Tootsie Rolls on the counter by the front door. I'm trying to do my body good by exercising, and they're tempting me with chewy chocolaty candy? What gives? I talked to one of the trainers who worked there, and she said that the gym's philosophy is unique in that they support overall health, rather than obsessions about being thin and toned. They strive for a comfortable, supportive, and friendly environment, where no one is judged, and everyone feels happy. The Tootsie Rolls, right by the exit, act as a little reward for working out and taking care of yourself. They also have free bagels one morning each month, and free pizza one night each month.

So I love their philosophy about supporting overall health and rewarding people for working out, but Tootsie Rolls? Bagels? Pizza? These aren't exactly screaming health food. Straight up candy just isn't good for your teeth or your blood sugar levels (not exactly how you want to replace depleted glycogen levels), and contains absolutely nothing nutritious. I'm not trying to be a Sally Sourpuss here, but I can think of so many other healthy ways they could reward their gym-goers. How about bags of nuts, dried fruit, granola bars, cheese sticks, or whole grain crackers? Or free passes to the gym? OK, so those aren't as fun as candy, but they'll sure make you feel better than a handful of Tootsie Rolls (you know you can't eat just one).

Join The Conversation
Vegakvd Vegakvd 3 years
Ok, so what I'm noticing is a lot of people are only using half the science that supports their claims while ignoring the other half. Yes, carbs are good after a workout to help with protein breakdown and muscle recovery. Complex carbs. Whole wheats, brown rice, etc.. Not simple carbs. Sugar can also spike insulin levels and prevent catabolic state of muscle loss. There are also "good" and "bad" sugars, fruit is a great after workout snack while high fructose corn syrup filled tootsie rolls are not. They are junk food that will slow your goals if not eaten in moderation and a horrible post workout option. pizza and bagels are also simple carbs, not complex carbs. You can't ignore half the facts and make a point.
brinsin brinsin 9 years
I don't see anything wrong with the tootsie rolls. I prefer Hershey's Kisses. I don't have to keep them around the house and know I can get one small treat at the gym. I am not sure about the pizza and bagel that is counterproductive.
cereal_please cereal_please 9 years
I think you're overreacting too. I guess the pizza and bagels are understandable, but what's a tootsie roll? 15 calories? ONE tootsie roll a day won't hurt anyone.
HappyKate HappyKate 9 years
There is nothing wrong with this tootsie roll idea. Most people can handle a tootsie roll and there is nothing wrong with not being so strict. Chances are if you are going to the gym anyways then you are the type of person who knows that one or even two tootsie rolls once in awhile is not a bad thing.
TidalWave TidalWave 9 years
Goodpoint almblack! Most protein powders/shakes have lots of sugar because your body needs it to balance itself back out after a hard workout (especially for weights).
almblack almblack 9 years
I've also learned from my coach that a little bit of sugar after a hard work out is a great way to get your sugar levels and such back on track.
TidalWave TidalWave 9 years
lol not all granola bars are healthy. and not all pizza is bad for you. and what is wrong with a whole wheat bagel?!!
Haethre Haethre 9 years
there are things inbetween junk food, like bagels. Pizza and Tootsie rolls are pushing it, but what's wrong with a bagel with fat-free cream cheese? the whole thing is 300 cals!
tiff710 tiff710 9 years
I totally agree with Fit. I have enough temptations in my daily life and I hardly need more when I'm at the gym of all places. I completely agree with having a balanced life, but believe me, I find more than enough "balance" at work (cupcakes in the break room), home (my roomies have a never ending candy supply), and just going out with friends (oh, why yes, i'll have another cocktail...or 3). The gym is the one place where I want to be motivated to kick ass and focus on being healthy. Now if only I could get them to turn off the Food Network when I"m running on the treadmill! :)
Smilesp Smilesp 9 years
One of the main reasons I work out is so that I can eat foods I like that aren't always the healthiest choices. However, I don't need my gym to give me junk food after a workout. I think it's unnecessary temptation.
Le-Luxe Le-Luxe 9 years
My gym does this too- it does seem a little sacreligious now...
fashionplate525 fashionplate525 9 years
Ugh, I would be annoyed by that too! Maybe put out some fruit or samples of protein bars or something. Something at least a little bit nutritious!
aedgeworth27 aedgeworth27 9 years
I have spent a lot of time thinking about this and reading through other comments. I am not really sure how I feel about this issue. I appreciate a gym that encourages moderation and enjoyment of all kinds of foods, especially foods that you WILL encounter in the world. I worked with a personal trainer at a local gym and some comments she made elicited negative body image thoughts in myself. She made me feel like dieting was a restrictive thing, not something where you exchange in healthier items for more unhealthy ones. She made exercise seem like a punishment for eating something I shouldn't have. So I can appreciate a gym that encourages you to moderate your eating habits. I have also heard that tootsie rolls are a great way to satisfy a chocolate craving. Instead of gorging on a whole Hershey's candy bar, have a few 5-calorie tootsie rolls and you are good to go. However, if you over do it, you might as well have just eaten the Hershey's bar. I am not sure how I feel about the bagels and pizza. I understand if the bagels are small and 100% whole wheat with no cream cheese, or light cream cheese. And the pizza a healthy thin-crust kind. But if that one piece of pizza became my lunch one day after a work out, I wouldn't feel guilty. It's just moderation. And of course there are going to be some people who can't handle it like the woman who walked in just to take a pizza box! Moderation in all things. That's the way to go.
lightheaded lightheaded 9 years
I belong... and I dont take any of it... not because its "unhealthful"... but because usually I don't want it when I am there. Use self control and stop complaining! I love my gym!
scottdavis0676 scottdavis0676 9 years
"Much ado about nothing!" Succint, yet apropos. No since raising your hackles over this when you can simply AVOID reaching your hand inside the bag of tootsie rolls. If you want one great, then take one, if not, then be one your way. I admit pizza and bagels are a little much, and definitely incongruous with the wholesome atmosphere of a gym, but tootsie rolls are fine. Sooner or later, you are going to be confronted with temptations in the "real world", so you'd better learn to say no now, or simply consume said snacks in moderation. Life is NOT about deprivation! I should know, I eat junk everyday in LIMITED AMOUNTS and still have an eight pack ha ha!
Tabloid Tabloid 9 years
At least, they give free food. :eyerolling:
susanec susanec 9 years
This is why this column and some of the attitudes bother me. I like balance and there can be room to play a little with "diet" and lifestyle. Maybe not all the time, at all stages, for all people, but I don't like the idea of "pizza is bad, EWWWW bagels, a pox on tootsie rolls". Perhaps they could have a better incentive plan but I like the theory that it's all a balance. And it's certainly better than the pigheaded trainer in my city who gives (or possibly throws) cupcakes to potential clients he deems unworthy and rejects. That's an abuse of power and food. This isn't.
Spectra Spectra 9 years
Seriously, who cares? I go to lots of different places that set out free candies, mini chocolate bars, or free samples of cookies or whatever. I JUST DON'T TAKE THEM. That's all you have to do...they're free, but it doesn't mean you're obligated to take one; no one will be offended if you don't eat a Tootsie Roll after you go to the gym. At work, people leave muffins or bagels out for a "treat" too; it doesn't mean I'm going to eat one. But I kind of agree with you on the nature of the freebies that they're giving out...they should have something like a basket of those Crystal Light ToGo packs or a basket of fruit or something. But I'm guessing Tootsie Rolls are cheaper, so that's why they give those out.
KrissyThePirate KrissyThePirate 9 years
Ah, I was wondering when Planet Fitness was going to come up here. They started up in the northeast and have been expanding since. I worked there for a little while, and here are my thoughts, and I read this in another post--though, they aren't shoving them down your throat--the point is for that to be a reward for working out, when food should just NOT be used to reward yourself. This is how people get unhealthy with food. Food is for survival and sustinence, not to reward yourself. And yes, some food is just yummy, but don't use it as a reward... I would see some members of the gym come in once a month to grab pizza and bagels, and that's it--that was the only reason they came. I actually saw a woman come in, grab a box of pizza and leave. Seriously? She had to sign in with me to get in and the last time she had been in the gym was for pizza night the month prior. Granted there were people who were dead set against touching the tootsie rolls and pizza--but it was just a little bit too much of an oxymoron for me, you know?
snowbunny11 snowbunny11 9 years
I don't think I have a crazy fast metabolism, and I admit I am trying to lose 5-10 pounds and eat healthier, but bagels, pizza and things like tootsie rolls are all part of my diet. Of course I try to balance it out with eating much healthier stuff, and I am getting much better at portion control, but I am really surprised that so many people don't eat these foods at all! In fact, I just had a bagel with some cream cheese for brunch, and I am intending on hitting the gym in a couple hours. I mean, we have to eat SOMEthing anyway, so yeah, while a bagel isn't as great as bran flakes, once or twice a week it isn't going to kill me. So yeah, I think the tootsie roll thing is okay. I mean....is a five calorie tootsie roll really going to make you fat?! I agree that using food as a reward is a bad idea, but I think that the gym's philosophy is more like, hey you're being healthy, everything in moderation is fine. Obsessing about every little calorie, or how every five minutes you could be doing jumping jacks is just not a healthy way to live life. I get that you are responsible for a blog about fitness, but that doesn't mean the rest of us obsess about this stuff every second! :)
terrormisu terrormisu 9 years
Don't get me wrong, I love this site. But considering those ads for 100 calorie portion sized twix, etc., that were plaguing this very site a month or so back, I can't take this little rant seriously. If you want the tootsie roll, eat it. If you don't, don't eat it. Is it really something to angst about?
Kimpossible Kimpossible 9 years
I'm with those who say it's counterproductive and that food shouldn't be used as a reward. Plus the suspicious side of me thinks they do it soley for the revenue of people coming in to or back to the gym. I'm all for rewarding people for good things, and I think those rewards can be non-food items. We in the U.S. already have such an unhealthy attitude towards food, I think this only makes it worse. I realize it's "only a tootsie roll" but consider an addict it's "just one drink", it's really the same principle. All it takes is one to get someone off track.
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