In the previous post I gave 3 reasons why most diet and exercise books may be a complete waste of time and money.
Truth be told, I believe a single good book can completely transform your world. It can alter your awareness and give your fitness career a whole new life you never knew was possible.
The only problem is that those books are few and far between. If you’re a regular reader you might come across one of those such books once every year or two.
This post is how to shortcut the process so you can get to those books sooner and possibly even with higher frequency.
#1- Look outside your bubble.
We like to stay with books, people and web sites that flow in the same direction we’re already going in. If you’re a vegetarian you’re probably much more likely to buy another vegetarian cook book or read a post about how eating meat is ruining the environment.
It’s nice to read about how we are doing the right thing, but staying within our bubble is rarely going to bring about big changes. If anything, it will further cement our current beliefs and habits That’s good if you’re getting what you want, but bad if you’re looking to make a change.
#2- Pay attention to your interest in the book as you read it.
I often feel like a loser if I don’t finish a book I started reading. I feel like I have to see it through even if it’s boring me to tears.
When it comes to fintess the best information will be the kind that grabs your attention and won’t let go. When I started reading Convict Conitioning I couldn’t stop reading it. I even thought about it when I wasn’t reading it and dove into its pages every moment I could.
Remember, our minds are looking for solutions and answers. If we find a book that offers such answers we will be drawn to it like a magnet. If you’re struggling to read a book chances are pretty good it has little to offer you and it’s best to move on.
#3- Be honst about your interest or ability to use the information in the book.
Information that doesn’t change your behavior is only slightly more powerful than complete ignorance. If you read about how to improve your workout but don’t actually use the advice then you’ve wasted your time reading that book.
It’s okay, sometimes we just aren’t ready to recieve some advice or make a change. If you’re reading a book and beleive you really don’t want to use the information then by all means put the book on a shelf, and in the back of your mind until later.
#4- Look to progress what’s working
Lastly remember that we don’t get better results because we do something different. We progress because we do something better.
This goes with the informtion you’re learning as well. If running has brought you some results then keep learning about how to become a better runner. Don’t change gears and look into rock climbing when what you’re doing has a proven track record for success.
I know this may contradict the first point I made about looking outside of your bubble. The key differcne is to keep milking your current method as long as it continues to provide value. If kettlebell workouts are getting you the body you want then keep learning about kettlebells! However if you’ve been doing kettlebell workouts for 6 months and nothing has happened then by all means look elsewhere.
Again, I end with a reiteration that experience, expirementation and awareness can provide more acurate and practical information than a library of books. Use books as a spark or inspiration and ideas but fan your own flames with action.