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Customer Review

102 of 111 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars NEW New Rules of Lifting; crunches are OUT?!, April 26, 2012
This review is from: The New Rules of Lifting For Life: An All-New Muscle-Building, Fat-Blasting Plan for Men and Women Who Want to Ace Their Midlife Exams (Hardcover)
The "New Rules of Lifting" are popular books, especially the version for women: New Rules of Lifting for Women: Lift like a Man, look like a Goddess. Now there is a new, updated book by the same authors, with some VERY important additional rules and clarification that are especially important for middle-aged people who work out --and it wouldn't hurt anyone younger to follow these either. A friend of mine who is a trainer remarked once that muscle builds a basis for "padding" that can protect against falls, and can protect against injury in sports as well as helping retain bone mass.

The new rules have a lot to to with the ABS... yes, it is true that abs are made in the kitchen but working the core (the abs) is the key to fitness in this book. For example Rule #1 says the role of the abs is to protect the spine. With so many people suffering back pain, which is entirely distracting and ultimately debilitating, this SHOULD be numero uno and it is.

Rule #2 also has to do with the spine--any exercise that injures your spine CANNOT protect it. That sounds almost self-evident, but how many lifting exercises, done incorrectly (ie, deadlifts) are actually doing more harm than good. Form does matter.

Rule #3 and #4 --forget the "six pack" and bulging abs. You may, genetically, not develop those. But a strong core still protects you and that's what counts. The author is going after strength and stability, not prettiness. This is focusing on what matters--maintaining your strength through middle age and beyond. Again, this can apply to younger people--what you develop in youth and maintain is easier to keep up.

And exercises have been updated; abdominal exercises that put undue pressure on the spine (Russian twists, for example) and other age-old standbys like crunches and hanging leg raises are NO LONGER part of NROL. WOW. What a change. And brave--here's an author who says "I've been in error in some things, I'm correcting that and advising you to change how you work out."

The thrust of the book has changed to core, flexibility, and stability. All you Pilates fans, I am sure are applauding "About time!" and there is a lot here on more effective workouts in the same space of time. There is also much on appetite and eating; for example, if you are ravenous after lifting, good news, this problem of wanting to eat hugely after a workout goes away over time as your body adjusts to the exercise.

Authors Lou Schuler and Alwyn Cosgrove are dedicated to have you get the most out of your workouts, yes, aerobics are important for cardio health, yes, muscle strength is important for bone mass and protection, but this new book tunes up your workout, brings in new data and regimens for more effective workouts and focuses on what's TRULY important. If you have previous copies of NROL or NROLW, you should definitely get this new volume. And if you are doing old-skool crunches in an effort to strengthen your abs, you might really want to see what the authors have discovered about abdominal exercise.
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Showing 1-7 of 7 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Apr 26, 2012 10:10:54 AM PDT
Stan says:

Thanks for providing an early review on this book - without the Look Inside feature being available yet it's hard to judge the content for those of us who might be interested in it. The rules you mentioned sound a lot like what I remember from The New Rules of Lifting for Abs: A Myth-Busting Fitness Plan for Men and Women who Want a Strong Core and a Pain-Free Back - if you've read that one also, was there a lot of duplication with the new book? Thanks!

In reply to an earlier post on May 5, 2012 12:57:53 PM PDT
N. Leaf says:
I believe Joanna's review is a review of NROL for Abs, not NROL for Life. I have read both, and although the approach is similar, NROL 4Life cites updated research and has a unique, customizable workout program that you build yourself based on the individual needs, abilities and limitations of your own body.

Posted on May 5, 2012 3:24:09 PM PDT
Joanna D. says:
No, it's this book; I focused on the core as it's important to this book. There is a lot more.

In reply to an earlier post on May 7, 2012 10:08:26 AM PDT
N. Leaf says:
Ok, it's just that the 4 rules you quoted in your review were from NROL for Abs, so a bit confusing.

Posted on May 10, 2012 5:37:44 PM PDT
John Bell says:
Would you recommend this for me? I'm 60 years old, 5'8, weigh 180. I have access to a gym through Silver sneakers. I'd like to lose about 15 pounds and be more fit. I currently only walk 2 miles four times a week. Thanks, John

Posted on May 10, 2012 5:46:10 PM PDT
Joanna D. says:
@John--I am no "expert" but (1) you are a guy and (2) you are my age. So I don't see you mention weight lifting. If you can (medically and physically) do weight lifting, you should try it. Muscle mass burns fat and joy of joys, men have testosterone and put on muscle mass relatively quickly. So this book ought to help. Sometimes you can hire a trainer for a few sessions to learn good form and you can then keep up with the weights at your gym. I personally prefer free weights to machines, but they have their place. Some people like Bowflex (machine) and there are pros and cons (not true even weight thru the movement, for example) but they can be bought used for reasonable sums. Some people swear by them as effective. The point is to keep up muscle mass,which builds bone, burns fat and acts as protective padding against falls, which are the bane of the older folks later in life.

2 miles 4x a week is good if you keep a good pace. Then there is food; if you are eating poorly, you will not see weight loss. It all goes together, walking, eating, weight lifting. One more note; by our age, we've accumulated some injuries (I have a tennis knee aggravated by martial arts and a fall.) I can't get around the fact my knee is hateful when I do squats and it gets nasty. Some people have bad spines, so you have to know your limits and work around a chronic injury so not to add to it. This is why a good trainer is important. Not someone who barks as motivation but someone who knows sports medicine and what weights do to joints.

In reply to an earlier post on May 11, 2012 9:52:01 AM PDT
John Bell says:
Thank you. I'll order the book today.
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