Read "The 4-Hour Body" by Timothy Ferriss (Cover To Cover)

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I must admit that I don’t finish many books, fiction or non-fiction.  In fact, I can’t tell you the last time I read a book from cover to cover.  I use a lot of books for reference, but I almost never read books for pleasure.  I tend to read short items, like articles online.  I suppose that’s one of the reasons this particular book attracted me.  It’s broken up into very manageable pieces.

I first heard about
“The 4-Hour Body” from the Facebook feed of Brian Mackenzie (B-Mack), founder of CrossFit Endurance, and about a week or so later, Tim Ferriss appeared on Robb Wolf’s “Paleo Solution” podcast (Episode 58).  B-Mack posted the following trailer that included a section with himself in it:

Because I respect these two men a great deal, and it was only
$14 on Amazon, I decided to order it in mid-December.  First of all, the book is almost 600 pages, so it’s a pretty good value (assuming the content is good-in this case, it is!).  One of the aspects of this book I like is that you don’t have to read it the way I read it.  If you are interested in one part of it, the chapters are fairly independent of one another.  The topics that it covers are far-reaching, and it talks about almost any goal one might have when it comes to the human body.  It has information on:

  • -Fat loss
  • -Muscle gain
  • -Better sex and increasing testosterone and sperm count
  • -Improving sleep (and being able to live on less sleep)
  • -Reversing injuries (and preventing new ones)
  • -Getting stronger
  • -Jumping higher
  • -Sprinting faster
  • -Running longer (and more efficiently)
  • -Holding your breath for extended time
  • -Hitting a baseball
  • -Increasing your swimming capacity
  • -Living a longer life

Obviously, your particular fitness/health goals would determine which chapter(s) would be pertinent to you, but I found the entire book really interesting.  The fat burning section was by far the largest, probably because it’s the part most people would be interested in, but for my money, I really appreciated the “Pre-hab” chapter on compensating for muscle imbalances as well as the sections on running endurance training (where B-Mack and
Kelly Starrett make appearances) and improving the bench press.

One of the things I thought was awesome was the simplicity of the diet he recommends (
the Slow Carb Diet).  It’s only got 5 rules to it, and one of them asks you to pig out one day a week. 

I enjoyed this book, and despite reading through it, I’m definitely going to use it as reference in the future.  I am going to try some of the advice contained in its pages, but only time will tell if it will be effective. 

In the end, the final message gave me a sense of why improving our bodies is important and not just superficial.  When other things in your life are not going well, “if you add ten laps to your swimming, or if you cut five seconds off your best mile time, it can still be a good week.”  The improvements you make on the outside change who you are on the inside.  After losing almost 30 pounds and gaining an enthusiasm for fitness I never thought I’d ever have, I believe this to be true, and that’s what makes reading 600 pages about it worthwhile.  :)

Related Items/Cool Stuff:
The 4-Hour Body: An Uncommon Guide to Rapid Weight Loss, Incredible Sex, and Becoming Superhuman by Timothy Ferriss
Take a Nap! Change Your Life. by Sara Mednick and Mark Ehrman
The Paleo Solution by Robb Wolf
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