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This is a little gem

5 out of 5 stars
5 out of 5 stars
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 2019-07-06

I'm a hard sell when it comes to books. If it doesn't grab me, I'm out. But the questions it asks at the start caught my attention. It never let go. After a refreshing analysis of fitness culture, it soon breaks into how to overcome the barriers we face, not by exercising better willpower, but by building a fitness routine based on something really personal... how you actually want fitness to feel.

You're guided you along a compelling chain of logic throughout but the storytelling from field work by the author (who is in the field of performance psychology I believe) has both a normalizing and inspiring tone to it. His analysis in "Lessons from the Loyal" was super fascinating. As the book ultimately implies, it's hard to break old patterns that end in disappointment without changing one's mindset or "system" under which one approaches exercise. They loyal work hard, yes, but they are willing to work hard because the really really really like what they're working hard at. To help you get there, the author asks unique questions (well unique to me anyway).

By the end, you'll realize, like I did, that it's less important that you have "right" goal or that you're "more determined than ever" to make it work, but that you know the fitness experience that will keep you attracted to moving your body on the regular. Or, as the author explains it, you find and then do likeable activities in likeable ways with likeable people. Goals can come later. Lastly, at the risk of playing spoiler, there's a relationship analogy that runs through the book that I found very creative and practical (i.e., fitness is a relationship, not a look or number on the scale, and we need to "date" fitness more consciously to break out of old ways).

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