December 1, 2022
Matt Fitzgerald

The Spanish writer Alessandro Baricco said: “A book is like a refrigerator – you open it and are glad it’s full. And you should consume the contents of the book accordingly – at night, in your pajamas, all alone! We don’t really care where or how you read our selection, but we’re sure you’ll find something suitable for you here.

Chicken Soup for the Soul: Reboot Your Life: 101 Stories about Finding a New Path to Happiness

Chicken Soup for the SoulNothing motivates as much as real success stories. And it doesn’t matter if we’re talking about financial well-being, a healthy lifestyle, or any other personal achievements. No training or workshops are capable of giving such an impetus forward as the non-fictional biographies of other people who have succeeded! After all, when you see how many people have been able to change themselves and their world, you awaken your faith in your own strength.

The 100 stories of the fight against excess weight in the book are told by ordinary people: everything they have experienced, trying to get in shape. Small motivational secrets from other people’s lives have already helped millions of people around the world take a step toward a healthy, fit and beautiful body.

You can move toward it gradually, in small steps, like Douglas Brown. He was denied life insurance because he was 40 kilograms overweight. This forced him to take action. He started simple: every day he climbed the stairs to the fourth floor to his workplace. Gradually he was able to make major changes in his diet and add exercise to it, so his health and well-being are much better now than when he started.

You can stumble and indulge your weaknesses, like Rebecca Hill. She once participated in a fitness exercise video held in Hawaii. The other participants, trim and slim, were health advocates, and Rebecca was terribly embarrassed about ordering cheeseburgers to her room in the evenings. So in the morning she would slip an empty tray to other people’s doors.
And always afterwards, to get “back on track,” to understand her own mistakes and forgive them, like Kimberly Hatmacher. She describes how she lost ten pounds in the past couple of years: “I set myself very modest goals each time, and this helped me to move forward calmly, without jerking and regularly achieve small victories over the long term.
Onward to victories over yourself!

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Run Forever: Your Complete Guide to Healthy Lifetime Running

Run ForeverThe book is called Run Forever, and it’s not a pretty turnoff: Ambi Burfoot really wants the reader to be able to enjoy running for life and without injury.

The book is very easy to read because of the structure (short chapters on different topics) and the writing style (friendly and accessible).

Not surprisingly, Burfoot not only won the Boston Marathon (that is, he knows what he is writing about), but he also began his journey of popularizing the sport with his school newspaper, and then worked for many years in the best running magazine Runner’s World. And it’s not his first book, either.

The book has a wonderful plan for those just starting to run – it suggests alternating between running and walking and gradually getting up to 30 minutes of continuous running.

Nancy Clark’s Sports Nutrition Guidebook

Sports nutrition for professionals and amateurs. The Complete Guide by Nancy ClarkA very useful and informative book about nutrition, which may be of interest not only to athletes.

The book gives answers to most questions and explains everything in great detail. There are no extremes, no fanaticism, and there are recommendations for adherents of different diets, a balanced scientific approach.

The publication consists of four parts:
1. Everyday Healthy Eating for Active People: Breakfasts, Lunches, Dinners and Snacks; Carbohydrates, Protein, Drinking.
2. Nutrition before, after and during training. Supplements, special sports nutrition.
3. Weight. Weight gain, overweight, diets.
4. Recipes (breakfasts, pasta/rice, vegetables and salads, poultry, meat, beans and tofu, fish and seafood, drinks and smoothies).

An important feature of the book is the large number of statistical tables with very useful information.

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For example: calcium requirements by age/sex; protein and calorie content of pasta/rice/quinoa; calcium content of dairy products, vegetables, cereals; nutritional value in popular breakfast cereals; 500-calorie breakfast options; comparison of milk and sports drinks for mineral and protein content; comparison of most popular sports bars.

Sports Nutrition for Endurance Athletes, Ryan Monique

Another new book on sports nutrition from an expert with extensive experience. This book is a little more specialized than the previous one-it’s for anyone involved in endurance sports (i.e., running, swimming, cycling, triathlons, adventure races).
It’s a systematic guide. It has both basics and specialized issues.

Monique RyanGeneral issues include fluid intake, essential nutrients, vitamins, minerals and electrolytes, weight loss and muscle gain, and ergogenic supplements – their safety and effects.

The second half of the book focuses on individual sports and special issues. Swimming, running, triathlon and cycling are too different for there to be one ready-made, one-size-fits-all nutrition plan, so Monique Ryan looks at the specifics of each sport.
The book also has tips for special occasions–young and old athletes, vegetarians and diabetics, pregnant girls.

The advice is looked at examples from real athletes, including amateurs-what challenges and issues they face, how they solve problems, and how they plan for nutrition during training and competition.”

How Bad Do You Want It?: Mastering the Psychology of Mind over Muscle, Matt Fitzgerald

Matt FitzgeraldA great book on sports psychology that you can’t tear yourself away from. It is built on the stories of elite athletes and their mistakes and lessons.

The reading translates quite well into application, if necessary.
For example, Alyssa McCaig, a professional runner, lost her position on the record several times at the end of crucial races. Even though she could feel afterwards that she wasn’t at 100 percent and wasn’t even very tired. She once made the decision to match her current physical suffering at a race with her emotional suffering after unsuccessful races, which helped her perform better at critical moments and improve her results.”

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Interesting quote from the book:

“Any athlete who forces himself to push his former limits of endurance in an effort to do better understands this. There is nothing like the feeling of deliberately pushing yourself to the point where you are ready to give up, and yet you don’t. In those moments of “brutal reality,” as Mark Allen calls them, when something inside you asks: “How badly do you want it?” – inner barriers are lifted, and you reveal that part of yourself that is only exposed at the most critical moments. And when your answer forces you to fight on, you emerge from this ordeal with a new awareness of yourself and a self-respect that no amount of money can buy.

In such moments of overcoming brutal reality, athletes discover not only reasons to keep fighting, but also ways to do so: motivation (why) and adaptive skills (how), which they can return to again and again when faced with the temptation to back down or give up. And both answers to the ‘why’ and the ‘how’ will be purely personal, unique to each athlete.”

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