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Bodyweight Strength Training: 12 Weeks to Build Muscle and Burn Fat Paperback – December 19, 2017
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About the Author
JAY CARDIELLO is a health and fitness expert who trains professional athletes, celebrities, and leaders in the entertainment industry. He is also an author and regular contributor for publications such as the Huffington Post, Men’s Fitness, SELF, GQ, and People. Jay lives in New York City with his son, Max.
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I must own a dozen different books on various aspects of bodyweight training. The benefit for me is that it's excuse free- you have no excuse not to exercise. I think that might hold true for most people- me especially. As scientific/medical evidence continues to mount that virtually any amount of exercise is hugely valuable in maintaining health and well-being, it seems pretty clear (to me) that you should make the effort. BW training IMO is the go-to method for anyone who is busy, traveling, or refuses to pay for a gym membership that will never get used. Mr. Cardiello uses line drawings rather than photographs to illustrate the movements- personally I found this a big plus as the forms are a lot clearer than in most photographed books. Also included are detailed workout regimens and interestingly a discussion on sustainability. I like that emphasis on "now that you've gotten to this point, here's how to keep going"- lifetime fitness, baby! A great addition to any strength enthusiasts library. Just remember- it's meant to be used, not just look good on your bookshelf. 5 stars
The book starts out with a very brief introduction to fitness in general, including mental and nutritional fitness. The latter is important to me, and if you're serious about it then you should look elsewhere to get a good nutritional program. The book then details numerous bodyweight-based exercises for legs, back, abdominals and arms (chest exercises are in the arm section). The book then lists the workouts for the 84 day program. Each day has its own page containing 3 sets of exercises for "beginners", "weekend warriors" and "fit pro" levels. There are fitness tests scattered throughout so you can determine which level you're at. I'm assuming as you get in better shape, you can repeat the entire routine at a higher level until you achieve fit-pro for all days. I'd have to say at that point you'd be in pretty decent shape. Days 57-84 are at the fit-pro level only. Each of the daily routines last for between 10 and 20 minutes, which is pretty quick, and consists of 10-20 individual exercises.
The exercises themselves vary from low intensity to high intensity and low complexity to high complexity. Instead of doing a number of repetitions, you're supposed to do the exercise for 30 seconds, then rest for 30 seconds. I strongly recommend practicing and becoming comfortable with each exercise in a routine before actually using it in the routine itself -- some of them require a decent amount of balance and coordination.
Overall I think this is a great book for a beginner or for someone who has no equipment. It will definitely get you into decent shape if you follow the program. However I think that bodyweight training has inherent limitations, so if you want to get in REALLY great shape I think at some point you'll want to graduate to a different type of workout. In particular, back and leg exercises based merely on bodyweight are not nearly as effective as equipment-based exercises. Also, this routine does not address aerobic fitness, which is also important to overall fitness.
Instead of sitting on the couch for 12 minutes, you can do an entire workout!! This book even has a weekly chart of what to do each day and you can check off the list. Who doesn't like to check off list??
Recommended for anyone wanting to tone up and loose weight.
I received a free copy from the publisher.