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Punching Above Your Weight

On Saturday night when I should have been relaxing I somehow ended up watching HBO, seeing Amir Khan fight Marcos Maidana in the 140-pound division. It started out really exciting with Khan knocking down Maidana in the first round with a brutal body punch that made Maidana wince and fall to the canvas. Then it equalized somewhat. Boxing is kind of interesting for a short while and then exhausting as you wait for something dramatic to happen. Must be even more exhausting for the boxers. But …

Here is the interesting thing that tells you a lot about human nature and futility.

It’s the 140 lb division. So, I assume, they shouldn’t weigh more than 140 lbs. And, at the announcements at the start of the fight, the ringmaster announced that they had respectively weighed in the morning before at 139lb and 140 lb respectively, and then, in the words of the TV announcer, “rehydrated” to their weights that evening which were about 150 lb.

What this means is that they had presumably had trained to weigh 150 lbs, then, just in advance of the weigh-in, taken diuretics to get down to 140, then soaked up water again to get back to 150.

Ten lbs of water to replace in 24 hours. You must feel awful when you’ve lost it, and bloated when you get it back.

Isn’t this nuts? If one of them did it it would be an unfair advantage, but they both do it, pretty much annulling any edge. Why do they both do it? Answer that and you’ll have answered a lot of other questions about life in general.

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