Saturday, July 6, 2013

Book Review: Body for Life for Women

Body for Life for Women
by  Pamela Peeke
Date Read:  7/6/2013

Rating:  ★

I checked this book out from the library because I'd heard that the Body For Life books are really good, and I know that women have some fundamentally different obstacles when trying to loose weight and get in shape.  I'm definitely not in as good of shape as I was in high school and college.  Not that I want to get all the way back to that (or that I think I can even physically do that anymore), but I know my body could look a lot better.  I've already been working out in a gym for several months and I see progress in my upper body (neck, shoulders, arms and pecs), but I definitely have some trouble spots that I'd really like to get rid of.  So that is why I checked this out.

To be fair, I skimmed a lot of it.  It's very wordy.  I'm sure it helps sink some of the principles in, but I was mostly in it for the types of food to eat and the types of exercises that will help the most.  She also breaks it down in to 4 stages of life.  I'm kind of in the middle of Milestone 1 and 2 right now, so I'd read those and completely skip Milestones 3 and 4 because they don't apply to me right now.  There is also some mental stuff in the book, but it didn't seem to have any specific ways to keep motivated...most of what you've already heard.

However, there are some nice tables that outline what foods fall into what categories and how much to eat of them.  And then based on your activity level and body type how many servings of those you should eat.  I think I'll have to write down some of this information before I give the book back because it will be great to reference.

The book also gives a table of how many calories are burned doing what types of cardio exercises based on your weight.  What I liked is that it seems to be more specific to a woman, because at the gym, the elliptical told me I burned 180 calories in 20 minutes last week, but according to the book at my weight, I would have burned 220 calories in 20 minutes.  I can only assume that is because the machine at the gym didn't take into account my gender and perhaps it didn't ask for my weight that day.

Also, I liked the Weight Removal Segment Checklist. I will have to create my own version of this to use.  Because though I've been working in the gym for several months and dieting for about 4 weeks, I haven't seen any weight loss.  I assume that it's based on my muscle mass gain, and of course muscle weighs more than fat.  So this checklist is nice because it will measure more than just my scale weight so I can see other progress I'm making, so I don't get so discouraged when I step on a scale.

And of course, at the back of the book is an entire appendix of exercises and stretches.  They all only use dumbells, but as long as I can find a machine at the gym that replicates the motion, then I'm good.

I'm going to read the regular Body for Life book as well, because I heard that the food plan is easier to follow that the one for Women.  But overall I got a lot out of this book and hopefully it helps me get to my goal.


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