Summer is winding down and you've gone through your reading list, but you still have time, right? I recently received three books for review, spanning a wide range of topics. All are well-worth picking up, for different reasons.
For the Metrosexual Triathlete within you:
Robert Valdez-Rodriguez' "Men: 10 Essential Skills" (New York, NY: RVR Publishing, 2010) is a primer on 10 things the author wants you to know to be a professional gentlemen. Valdez-Rodriguez (or RVR) doesn't claim to know it all, and has recruited 9 other pros to share their wisdom. From tying a bow tie to driving a stick shift to keeping your girl happy, RVR and his buddies give simple advice on achieving success in 10 skills. Lighthearted and well-meaning, this is a book that can be read in one sitting or one chapter at a time. My 10 year old has picked it up and, while he's years away from playing poker, lighting and smoking a cigar, or driving a stick shift, I'm happy he's getting a heads up on some basic things he might run across in his journey to manhood. Ladies, this isn't your typical Cosmo How-To-Please-Your-Man, but it might be worth paging through anyway.
If you love the outdoors:
John Larison's "Holding Lies" (New York, NY: Skyhorse Publishing, 2011) is set among the steelhead guides of Oregon's wild Northwest. Larison writes about life on the river, weaving in musings on relationships (guide/client, parent/child, husband/wife, and so on), our impact on nature, and how we treat outsiders. A murder spices things up and adds another layer of complexity to the novel. While I feel it started slowly, the novel is well-worth sticking with, as it slowly builds to its crescendo, with false starts, sidetracks, and clues to the murderer along the way.
For the Baha in you:
Bob Seebohar is well-known in the endurance community as a nutrition coach and endurance enthusiast. He's updated his book, "Nutrition Periodization for Athletes" (Boulder, CO: Bull Publishing Co, 2011) with the most recent research and knowledge he's come across.
This book was a complete shocker for me. I thought I had a decent handle on sports nutrition, well,as much as a layman could, but Seebohar has turned many of my conceptions upside down. Gulp your water, don't sip? Complex carbs are not necessarily better than simple? Wow.
Do you follow the ‘old school’ approach to sports nutrition–only paying attention to food the week or so before a competition? Yeah, I used to and still try to eat a bit better the night before a workout of longer duration. However, this is not enough. Seebohar presents a ‘new school’ approach–an innovative method that allows you to discover the benefits of a year-round, periodized nutrition plan.
Whether you're training for a long-course triathlon, your first century ride, running an ultra, or just want to keep up with your kids, this book should become an indispensable addition to your training plans. A single read-through is nowhere near enough to get more than a surface understanding of what Seebohar is suggesting, but there are so many simple tweaks that can be assimilated one at a time that it would a shame not to take advantage of this read.
Depending on your sport, be it cycling, triathlon, running, or a combination of the above, your nutrition goals may include such as losing or gaining weight or decreasing body fat and increasing lean muscle mass. This book will help you do that.
(Disclaimer: I was sent these books for free to review on my blog - courtesy of the publishers. I did not pay for the items, receive payment for these reviews, or agree to give a positive review. Aside from information gleaned from the company websites, the opinions are my own.)