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Book Review: Slow Burn

slow burn by Stu MittlemanI’m not a fountain of positive mental attitude when the subject of exercise comes up.

I usually exercise in spurts of a few months when motivated for health reasons, but fall away when the pain or drudgery or boredom take their toll.

But when a friend encouraged me to read this book, and when I saw that the author had RAN across the United States, averaging 50+ miles a day for 56 straight days, I thought, “Maybe he knows something about running…”

He does.  This book has cleared away a lot of misconceptions I had about the physiology of exercise (even as a trained physician), & given me both a new philosophy & a new set of tools to apply to a sustainable exercise program.

The book is divided into three sections: Part one deals with how to THINK, part two with how to TRAIN, & part three on how to EAT.  He lays down his philosophy about how movement, whether walking or running, is both natural and integral to our bodies & can be a source of joy.  He covers a broad variety of topics, from aerobic vs. anaerobic exercise, workouts, healthy diets, even a chapter on selecting the ideal running shoe.  Intermixed are anecdotes about his own insights, successes and failures and those of people he has coached.

Some of his interests, such as kinesiology, alkaline food, & blood microscopy are on the fringe or beyond currently accepted medical science, but these shortcomings do not detract from the value of a book that is both an easy read and chock full of helpful ideas for anyone from the couch potato to the experienced marathoner.  I loved this book.

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