I love me some books. If it is written down, bound and put together in an aesthetically pleasing way, you can bet I'll be reading it! Fitness books, however, are not always the easiest to find. Some of them can be downright confusing, blasting the reader with senseless information that they don't care/need to know/can comprehend. If I read one more thing about the difference between aerobic/anaerobic exercise in a book I'll scream, throw the book down and run away to Canada. That's the kind of talk that should be reserved for biology.
Of course, there are some really great fitness books. Some gems, peaking through the rubble that give me hope that I too can find a book that will help me understand a new form of exercise. This list complies my favorites. The books that I find lay things out clearly, motivate me and give me enough information in an east to understand manner.
Running Made Easy You may be wondering why I am giving you a link to a book about running. After all, isn't running just moving one foot in front of another at a pace quicker than walking? To me, it's not. I am not a natural runner and have found this book tremendously helpful in giving me the want, motivation and knowledge to begin running. It's basically a modified version of couch to 5k, but with a wealth of information and stories that will motivate you to get out and start running. A bonus? It also includes a fitness diary, if you are into keeping a log of what you do. photo source
Slim Calm Sexy Yoga If you are looking to get into yoga and have little/no previous experience with it, this is most definitely the book you are looking for! A couple months ago, I was interested in beginning to practice yoga, yet was completely overwhelmed with the amount information given in many books on yoga. I wanted to know the poses, but I also wanted to know ways that I could put the moves into routines. This book delivers on both fronts. It is divided into three sections: the first talks about the basics of yoga including alignment, breathing and the benefits of practice; the next part shows images of all the basic poses, organized by sitting, standing and laying down; the final portion gives you different routines, all supposed to target a specific "concern" such as toning, relaxation and physical aliments. The diversity of information is amazing, but concise enough to be useful to all kinds of beginners. photo source
The New Rules of Lifting for Women I love weightlifting, but finding a good book about it? Nearly impossible. This is most definitely one of the best books I have found on the topic thus far. It provides you with a treasure trove of information presented in a mostly accessible manner. If you have ever lifted weights before and wanted a bigger challenge, this is just the book for you. It's divided into several sections, discussing everything from why you should lift weights, how to lift them (complete with pictures, always useful!), how to care for your body while lifting them and nutrition. The book may be intimidating for first time lifters, but still presents great motivation. Whenever I am in need of a little inspiration for why I continue to lift weights, I go to this book. One of my favorite parts about how it discusses the actual exercise is that it doesn't prescribe a certain amount to lift, or number of repetitions. I find all too often with weight lifting books, it is easy to become complacent when you can easily complete the most difficult workout. Giving you the exercises and a format for the exercises allows you to follow the book, while making your workout your own.
What's your favorite workout book? Do you prefer to take classes instead?