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Brain Over Brawn: Smart Solutions to Regain and Maintain Strength, Health & Youth Perfect Paperback – December 15, 2009
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Perfect Paperback, December 15, 2009
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1) Concision: I'd really have never picked up a book like this, but the fact that I was already 1/4th done at the end of the first sitting made me decide to keep going. It's true that following the principles in this book gave me more results in terms of energy, appearance, and strength than I'd have ever expected in such a short length of time, but ultimately I finished it because of its brevity. There's nothing left out; it's not "short" in a bad way, but it offers a simple plan that gets the most results with the least amount of effort for most people, while still giving in depth explanations of everything that needs explaining.
2) Practicality: The plan presented is quite doable for anyone. This isn't yet another book telling you to spend hours at the gym every day. It's advocating lifting duffel bags of rocks in the comfort of your own home for a few minutes 3 times a week. Yes, spending hours at the gym lifting freeweights will get you more muscles faster and the author acknowledges that, but this is a book "for the rest of us" after all. Personally I always thought the utility (not to mention the cost) of a gym was a bit overrated for what it provides, but this is the first thing I've seen to confirm that. Eliminating the time spent going to the gym, changing, waiting for equipment, showering, changing again, and coming back makes a workout much easier to fit into a busy day. Personally I work at home, so when I'm starting to fade in the middle of the day, I turn around, lift the bag for a bit, then go back to work refreshed and awake from the endorphin rush. It's perfect.
3) Honesty: The plan presented is honest, explaining (with citations) why its ideas are accurate and why a number of others are not in a way that aligns with common sense. Yes, you can get fit without going to a gym. Yes, weight machines are generally inefficient at achieving strength goals compared to freeweights (or other generalized heavy objects). Yes, taking the stairs, walking from the far parking spot, etc. are all good for you. Yes, most diet plans and most supplements are crap. Yes, women can lift weights without looking like the gold-bikini wearing hulks in fitness rags. Most books just don't have the guts to say that stuff. This does, and it does it well.
This is not just another fitness book. It's practical enough for anyone, it's concise enough that even the disinterested can get through it, and it's honest enough to hook those skeptical of the fitness field in general by cutting through all the crap out there from profiteers looking to make a fast one. This book is different. Get it. You'll be glad.
And now I have a guide to making feasible, sustainable, effective changes to my diet; to keeping an exercise regimen that basically mocks me with its simplicity and minimal time and equipment requirements; and to understanding *why* the choices make a difference. It's been a month, which is about twice as long as I've stuck with anything similar, and I haven't had to go into a gym or count a calorie once.
I'm not someone who used this book's advice to go from 400 lbs to doing 1-handed pushups with a Prius on my back, though I have little doubt that it would work for those who wanted to do that. I'm just a guy who feels great, and I'm a little more pleased with my reflection in the mirror every week. I'm not hungry all the time, I can always find something to order at a restaurant that I like, I have more energy, and I certainly don't feel like I'm "on a diet" or working out all the time.
It is hard to imagine a lower-commitment, more-straightforward system for getting into better shape (physically, but I think very much also mentally/emotionally). The book itself is a quick read, in a fun and clear writing style. If you're even *reading reviews* about fitness or exercise or diet books, you should take advantage of Clint's wisdom and research, and grab a copy.
Clint Cornelius has a way of laying out the information in that you dont feel like your being scolded. The information is simplistic, without getting too technical, which is what a person who is just starting out needs. In a society where diet and exercise is constantly changing and new fads are always coming out, it seems like we have information overload that causes a lot of people to become overwhelmed. Brain over Brawn is the opposite. Clint gives information that is needed to succeed in getting healthier in a way that anyone can understand it, but more importantly, can implement it in to their lifestyle with no more effort than doing the exercise and watching what you eat.
If you have anyone who you feel needs a push in the right direction, I urge you to pick this up for them. Hell, pick it up for yourself as well. Its a very quick read and might enlighten you to how much easier getting healthy can be than what media makes it out to be.