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The New Rules of Lifting for Women: Lift Like a Man, Look Like a Goddess

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Finally, a weight-training book that doesnt treat women like weaklings. This book is for the woman whos ready to throw down the Barbie weights and start a strength and conditioning program that will give her the body she wants. Illustrated.


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Finally, a weight-training book that doesnt treat women like weaklings. This book is for the woman whos ready to throw down the Barbie weights and start a strength and conditioning program that will give her the body she wants. Illustrated.

30 review for The New Rules of Lifting for Women: Lift Like a Man, Look Like a Goddess

  1. 4 out of 5

    Al

    I would love to do a feminist deconstruction of this book. A "women's" fitness book written by a man with workouts designed by another man? A book that claims to be about lifting but instead emphasizes weight loss, "looking like a goddess" and being stronger but not looking strong? A book that constantly refers to and assumes how women think versus how men think? But let's let the English major in me shut down for a second, and let's let the gym rat in me take over and review this book for what I would love to do a feminist deconstruction of this book. A "women's" fitness book written by a man with workouts designed by another man? A book that claims to be about lifting but instead emphasizes weight loss, "looking like a goddess" and being stronger but not looking strong? A book that constantly refers to and assumes how women think versus how men think? But let's let the English major in me shut down for a second, and let's let the gym rat in me take over and review this book for what it is--a fitness book. A large portion of this book was fairly irrelevant--I'm already a gym-goer who loves her squats, so I didn't need the information explaining why I should work out/encouraging me to lift. The meal plan section was equally irrelevant--too much whey protein/reliance on supplements, lots of fish, eggs and dairy--for a vegan reader. However even the parts that repeated what I already agree with were interesting to read, as Schuler has a casual and easygoing writing style with just enough (but not too much) cheesy/good-natured humor. I expected a fitness book to be rather dry, but Schuler makes you want to keep reading it all--even the technical/fact-heavy stuff. While the meal plan is irrelevant, I do like his insistence that you can't cut calories AND work out--you have to choose one or the other. Are you going to just lose fat and muscle--and therefore "weight"--or are you going to improve your overall body shape/health and gain strength in the process? The workouts themselves seem well-structured and balanced, and Schuler has convinced me to give his program a try. It can't hurt to shake up my usual workouts, and the exercises and schedule found in this book are reasonable and doable (although slightly confusing at first read). While the shorter/fewer workouts may not be my cup of tea--I love going to the gym and having my "me" time--it makes this program more accessible to those who don't get excited about spending an hour at the Y :) I'm a little disappointed that there isn't more emphasis on "bulking up"--I love seeing muscle!--but I think the overall structure is a good one that I will see benefits from. I'm already sore from day one--and I was worried it would be too basic/beginner. Great utilization of basic moves to create a simple and effective workout. I'm looking forward to tomorrow and round two--especially since I have a better grasp of what weights I can use/how to better push myself after the day one "trial."

  2. 4 out of 5

    Rebecca

    I'm really on the fence about this book. Things I liked: + The author is funny! The book is entertaining. + I learned things! (Although with a caveat (see below).) I now know why building muscle helps build strong bones, and that there are different types of muscles - strength and endurance. Things I didn't like: - Author says you HAVE to have a post workout shake, either whey or soy. What if you can't have either? And the author also says to eat less processed foods. What do they do to this stuff I'm really on the fence about this book. Things I liked: + The author is funny! The book is entertaining. + I learned things! (Although with a caveat (see below).) I now know why building muscle helps build strong bones, and that there are different types of muscles - strength and endurance. Things I didn't like: - Author says you HAVE to have a post workout shake, either whey or soy. What if you can't have either? And the author also says to eat less processed foods. What do they do to this stuff to get it in powdered form, PROCESS IT? Are there any alternatives you can make yourself or whole foods you can eat? - Author spends a noticeable amount of time talking about his past theories on exercise being wrong. Why is this one right? - The exercise program is a little confusing. So while I'm thoroughly convinced I need to get stronger (especially if I want to get a bike again!), I'm still not sure exactly how to do it. I may re-read this. ETA: I have gone through this program twice. I am definitely stronger. Surprisingly stronger. Like surprised when I went to load my harp in my car and assumed I was using the usual amount of force and practically threw it in the car. I hadn't previously done a weight-training program, did not consume any protein shakes or powders, didn't visit a gym (I modified some of the exercises for home), now want to visit a gym at some point, didn't lose weight (didn't really need to), and am looking for a next training program.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Virna

    If I can get away with it, I'd choose not to do any kind of sports except lounging on a La-Z-boy reading Oprah's pick-of-the-month. Seriously, I never would've imagined that lifting weights would be as fun as lifting a size-12 Zara LBD out of a discounted rack. I was in a no-size zone (Zara carries no size-18+) prior to lifting weights, but last September just out of boredom and invited by a friend, I joined a big-name gym next to where I worked. They offered a couple of free sessions w/ a train If I can get away with it, I'd choose not to do any kind of sports except lounging on a La-Z-boy reading Oprah's pick-of-the-month. Seriously, I never would've imagined that lifting weights would be as fun as lifting a size-12 Zara LBD out of a discounted rack. I was in a no-size zone (Zara carries no size-18+) prior to lifting weights, but last September just out of boredom and invited by a friend, I joined a big-name gym next to where I worked. They offered a couple of free sessions w/ a trainer and that's how I learned about squats, lunges and the likes. My trainer's your typical get-as-many-clients-as-you-can young buck with 2-yr experience training mainly svelte hot young bodies - I was a real-world challenge to him. Then I started googling on movements he taught me to do: burpees, planks, squats, just because I was somewhat apprehensive whenever he asked me to do those things - I was ready to quit and slap him a harassment lawsuit. [Believe me, you'd be self-conscious when you're the only one at the gym pushing your big fat behind all the way to eternity.:] I persevered, though, and shed 8kg. It's no Biggest Loser material, but enough to make me return to the gym. Then I came across articles written by Alwyn Cosgrove and his super-strong wife, Rachel. That's how I learned about this book. I'd assume that the people who pick up this book have done some lifting, be it Barbie-bells or real-life barbells, but any beginner who resents those men milling about the Smith machine [those sissies!:] should find this book inspiring. The first chapter's titled "Why Should a Woman Lift Like a Man?" [why shouldn't we?:] - and goes on to explain fun things like: why cardio is overrated ["Step away from the Treadmill":], how most female's quad dominant and how to fix it, that every exercise is a "core" exercise. My favorite quote from the book is how the author (Lou Schuler) defines the goal of ab training, that is: "to perform better in everyday activities and specific exercises, and to bolster the integrity of your spine and its connective tissues during the performance of those activities and exercises." Somewhere in the background I heard Camryn Manheim yelling, "This is for all the fat girls!" The second part of the book deals with diet and nutrition. Unless you're thinking of nip and tuck every time your body collects fat, no matter how hard you work out, you still have to watch what you eat. The meal plans offered in this book are simple enough, in fact, you can find more sophisticated information elsewhere, but I find the whole thing on protein shake quite useful. So yes, not only do we have to invest on gym membership, we'd have to spend more dough on protein powder and healthy foods (they're considerably more expensive than your regular pizza and cokes) to become better athlete! (somehow 'gymrat' is no longer in your vocab after doing this book.) The last part is the 'just-do-it' part. You can read until you bleed, but it's no use if you skip the workouts entirely. Most importantly, the book preaches on no isolating exercises, so leave the fancy machines behind (except the lat machine). Alwyn has programmed a 7-stage workout that would last 6 months. While I have yet to reach the part where I can do my own chin-up (apparently, Rachel Cosgrove can do a dozen without losing a breath), the book has been my constant companion to the gym. Advanced lifters would probably move on to NROL or Testosterone Advantage. If you're a beginner, I'd suggest you start with a trainer who can show how to do squats and other movement in good form. So now, shut up and lift! Check out the NROLFW forum and the original book site.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Karen Bell

    This is a great book and I cannot thanks the authors enough for writing it in such an approachable way. I bought it having never lifted free weights & having not worked out regularly for about 10 years, and dived into this book to balance a new daily cardio habit that was getting old fast. It's changed both my body & my self-confidence in ways I never imagined possible. I'm in stage 6 of 7 now, and the workouts are tough, but I love them. I leave the gym feeling like a badass every time. The n This is a great book and I cannot thanks the authors enough for writing it in such an approachable way. I bought it having never lifted free weights & having not worked out regularly for about 10 years, and dived into this book to balance a new daily cardio habit that was getting old fast. It's changed both my body & my self-confidence in ways I never imagined possible. I'm in stage 6 of 7 now, and the workouts are tough, but I love them. I leave the gym feeling like a badass every time. The nutrition plan is also empowering that I don't have to be a hungry, cranky beast to get back into smaller jeans. I only gave it 4 stars instead of 5 because at first, the schedule & a few of the lifts were confusing, and I wish there was more detail about what to do after all 7 stages are done, what to do when you're plateaued on a lift, and the priceless advice not to squat in the Smith machine. By overall, I'm thrilled with this book and my results following it. I've lost *only* 8 lb. so far, but 3" off my waist, and I've dropped 2 jeans sizes. And I'm getting stronger & healthier every time.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Marnie

    I'm a bit on the fence about this book. Without a doubt, I think the diet plan is garbage. It's another take on the low carb, high protein diets that fall in and out of favor with the public. I just don't buy that the vast majority of people can commit planning out 4-6 meals a day, every day, indefinitely and ensure they are getting X% of this and Y% of that. Perhaps sticking to it for a few weeks, for some people, will help them develop a sense for the types of foods and amounts they might want I'm a bit on the fence about this book. Without a doubt, I think the diet plan is garbage. It's another take on the low carb, high protein diets that fall in and out of favor with the public. I just don't buy that the vast majority of people can commit planning out 4-6 meals a day, every day, indefinitely and ensure they are getting X% of this and Y% of that. Perhaps sticking to it for a few weeks, for some people, will help them develop a sense for the types of foods and amounts they might want to aim for but otherwise, I consider the diet section unrealistic and sadly, the dishes often sound downright unappetizing or boring. I haven't started the workouts yet, but I'm interested to see how effective such a short workout can be. I'll have to make some adaptations. While the author claims that everything can be done with a modest at-home gym, many exercises featured equipment that I don't have at home, despite having free weights an adjustable bench and a nautilus machine, already. I'll still need to buy a Swedish exercise ball, pull-up bar, steps of several heights and if I wish to do the deadlift as described, an olympic barbell with weights and a stand. In short, this book may claim to be suitable for a home gym, but it's really most effective for someone with a full gym membership. Still, as negative as this sounds, I don't feel this is a bad book. It's a quick, easy, and sometimes funny read, and the book is well organized to help you find what you need when you need to look something up. Months of workouts are pre-planned for you with photo tutorials of each exercise you'll do. I've already printed out worksheets for the first 6 weeks (stage 1) and I'm looking forward to trying them and seeing how I feel. ----ADDENDUM TO REVIEW---- I've been doing the workouts from this book for about 3 months now. Keeping in mind that I am ignoring all the diet information except for the general rule that it's good to have protein, especially on days you work out, these are my thoughts: Pros -Workouts are efficient. Most exercises work multiple muscles at the same time meaning you do fewer exercises overall while still getting a full workout. -Workouts, especially the first few stages, are short, making them easy to fit into your day and easy to commit to. They get a little longer as you start to add in some aerobics and more sets, but I'm still able to get in and out of the gym in an hour or less. -There's a lot of variety which keeps workouts interesting. -I've definitely noticed progress both in my ability to lift greater weights and my ability to do more reps at those greater weights. -I've also noticed progress in muscle tone Cons -To do all the workouts would require a membership to a serious gym (not just one of those basic gyms some condos and workplaces sometimes offer). The author sometimes offers alternatives for the preferred exercise but in at least one case the alternative exercise was one already slated for later in the workout. -I managed to pull a muscle in my shoulder, pretty badly, doing one of the exercises, which required I take some time off from working out. While the descriptions are reasonably good I'm inclined to suggest looking for videos of any exercises that are totally new to you. -I probably wouldn't do these workouts if I had to go to a full gym. Keeping a log, flipping through the book to see how exercises are done, and needing to wait a set amount of time between sets would be a pain when you are sharing equipment with other people. I would also feel weird trying to learn new exercises in front of an audience. I'm pretty self conscious about this kind of thing, so take that for what it's worth. -I'll just say it, I find the prone cobra and plank exercises so desperately tedious I dread doing them and at least one of them is in pretty much every workout. I'm sure they have their value but I'd be lying if I said I did them every time they are indicated. -I was already working out before I started the exercises in this book and I was starting with three sets of 20 push-ups and a similar number of crunches (or variations thereof). This book has you working so few reps that neither has felt like much of a challenge. I was trying to stick strictly to the book but I've modified how many of each I do to keep it more challenging. Conclusion I'm going to stick with the workouts for now. For the most part, I find them challenge, fun, and effective. I would encourage people to find videos of any exercises that are unfamiliar and to practice them with little or no weight before trying them out, to avoid injury. Once I've completed all stages of the workout, I'll probably look at refining what I've learned for my own personal preference and goals.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Megan

    This is the best book on lifting I've ever read. The "new rules" of lifting for women are essentially that there are no "rules of lifting for women"--having read the book cover to cover, I'm guessing the title was invented by an intrepid young public relations intern skimming the manuscript on an airplane four hours before deadline--women can and should lift the way men do. Use lots of weight, with fewer reps. Eat protein. Etc. What I loved about this book is the author's painstaking, pleasantly This is the best book on lifting I've ever read. The "new rules" of lifting for women are essentially that there are no "rules of lifting for women"--having read the book cover to cover, I'm guessing the title was invented by an intrepid young public relations intern skimming the manuscript on an airplane four hours before deadline--women can and should lift the way men do. Use lots of weight, with fewer reps. Eat protein. Etc. What I loved about this book is the author's painstaking, pleasantly-articulated research. For every claim he makes, he can point to several studies backing him up. (Though I am pretty suspicious of his claim that if Diet Coke was bad for you, we would know it by now.) He deflates the I'm-a-vegan-for-my-health and the average-Americans-eat-enough-protein-to-fuel-an-elite-athlete fads, without excusing you to run out and order a stuffed crust meat-lover's pizza. He is also not evangelical about alcohol, tending toward "everything in moderation" as a motto, which is good, since I distrust anyone foolish enough to imagine that my red wine WOULD EVER HURT ME.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Jenny Baker

    ***Update 6-7-17: $1.99 on Kindle!*** Ladies, this is a great investment if you're looking to get in better shape and you feel overwhelmed about what book to read. It costs less than a latte. ***Update 6-7-17: $1.99 on Kindle!*** Ladies, this is a great investment if you're looking to get in better shape and you feel overwhelmed about what book to read. It costs less than a latte.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Lisa

    I was really excited about this book after hearing about it on Priorfatgirl.com. But it turns out that this is just another exercise book. Just another person’s opinion. It conflicts with many of the things I have been taught about exercise, and I don’t mean that in a good way. I refuse to believe that aerobic exercise is as unnecessary as he tries to make it sound. Yes, strength training is key in weight loss and overall fitness. I get that. But in order for them to keep working throughout your I was really excited about this book after hearing about it on Priorfatgirl.com. But it turns out that this is just another exercise book. Just another person’s opinion. It conflicts with many of the things I have been taught about exercise, and I don’t mean that in a good way. I refuse to believe that aerobic exercise is as unnecessary as he tries to make it sound. Yes, strength training is key in weight loss and overall fitness. I get that. But in order for them to keep working throughout your life, your heart and lungs do in fact need endurance-building exercise. Strength training goes hand in hand with aerobic exercise, but neither one is mutually exclusive. He tends to go off on overly complicated explanations of body systems. I also don’t like that he essentially ignores the role machines can play in strength training. There is nothing at all wrong with starting out on machines and graduating to free weights, if that’s what you choose to do. There is also nothing wrong with choosing to stick with machines, or doing a mix of machines and free weights. His all-or-nothing approach would probably scare away a lot of beginners. So overall, kind of disappointing. I would probably only give this one star if not for the fact that it definitely gave me a lot to think about and at least a few good ideas.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Andy

    Not going to rate this yet since I'm starting the programs today! However, I will say this was a really enjoyable read. It was very funny, while still being informative in a clear and understandable way. I'm glad that this book wasn't "1000 ways to say you can do it", because while that's a nice sentiment, for someone like me that doesn't help me come up with a workout plan. I've been working out with various levels of success for about two years now, so I've been looking for something that would Not going to rate this yet since I'm starting the programs today! However, I will say this was a really enjoyable read. It was very funny, while still being informative in a clear and understandable way. I'm glad that this book wasn't "1000 ways to say you can do it", because while that's a nice sentiment, for someone like me that doesn't help me come up with a workout plan. I've been working out with various levels of success for about two years now, so I've been looking for something that would help me learn new strategies for working out as well as give me recipes for more nutritious meals. I was also really glad this book didn't wax too poetic about "healthy eating". Yes I know I should eat more fruits and vegetables. Yes I know I shouldn't be eating that muffin, but what are you going to give me that will taste just as good? All of the recipes in this book sounded delicious and I'm definitely going to be trying them within the next 6 months.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Carrie

    I've heard a lot about this book over the years so I decided to check out a copy from the library. I'm not a novice to strength training and so I'm not really the target audience. That being said, I think that if you are new to strength training this would be the perfect book. It's all info that is available on the internet for free. However, there is a lot of nonsense/junk on the internet as well. The authors of this book actually rely on credible science and provide you with facts rather than I've heard a lot about this book over the years so I decided to check out a copy from the library. I'm not a novice to strength training and so I'm not really the target audience. That being said, I think that if you are new to strength training this would be the perfect book. It's all info that is available on the internet for free. However, there is a lot of nonsense/junk on the internet as well. The authors of this book actually rely on credible science and provide you with facts rather than folklore. I also appreciated how practical the main author, Lou Schuler, is with his advice. He doesn't say "you must do things exactly as I tell you or you won't get results." He doesn't market himself as a guru. He will tell you what he thinks (once again, based on science) and then gives you options for how to do things differently if you really want to. If the exercises are new to you it might be helpful to look up some videos on Youtube, as the written descriptions are sometimes a little difficult to visualize.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Negin

    I wish I’d taken the time to realize that this book is rather dated and the authors have come out with a newer book. “The New Rules of Lifting” was their first book for women and they have since updated their research. The older I get, the more I realize the importance of strength training. Although the book is written in an engaging way, I would have preferred it if the workouts were less complicated and better organized. I have to say that reading this has motivated me to take weight training I wish I’d taken the time to realize that this book is rather dated and the authors have come out with a newer book. “The New Rules of Lifting” was their first book for women and they have since updated their research. The older I get, the more I realize the importance of strength training. Although the book is written in an engaging way, I would have preferred it if the workouts were less complicated and better organized. I have to say that reading this has motivated me to take weight training more seriously from now on. Although I’m not much of a paper workout person and definitely prefer videos, I wouldn’t mind getting their newer book. Some of my favorite quotes: “Protein is to diets what black is to fashion: it makes everyone thinner.” “If the weights are unchallenging, your muscles won’t grow.” “Doing traditional ab exercises on your back on the floor, with your legs bent at the knees and hips, isn’t a good use of your time and energy.”

  12. 5 out of 5

    Áine Maria

    I happened to enjoy reading this, much more than Starting Strength. It's easy to see how some of the writing would offend some ladies but I just imagined Lou as That Guy Who Means Well. He reminds me of the nice, well balanced people at the gym who don't care who you are or what you look like as long as you want to do your best. These are the people that walk over with a good tip once in a while if they notice something about your form or whatnot. Reading his experience as a "nonwoman" almost kil I happened to enjoy reading this, much more than Starting Strength. It's easy to see how some of the writing would offend some ladies but I just imagined Lou as That Guy Who Means Well. He reminds me of the nice, well balanced people at the gym who don't care who you are or what you look like as long as you want to do your best. These are the people that walk over with a good tip once in a while if they notice something about your form or whatnot. Reading his experience as a "nonwoman" almost killed me with laughter. Good on this guy for making a good effort to reach out to his audience. I appreciated his admittance that he never officially targeted women as his audience and that he organized this book with that in mind. While I have never cared whether or not a fitness program was for women since I was lucky enough to have egalitarian, weights-savvy friends and acquaintances to show me the ropes, there are women out there who DO care about such labels and it's great that they've got this book as a resource. I won't follow the diet portion of this book because I am a vegetarian. Even before I "officially" went vegetarian, I'd always pushed meat around my plate instead of eating it and had a lot of difficulty with muscle gain because my diet was poorly adjusted. It would have been nice to have veggie/vegan friendly options, but there are plenty of resources out there for veggie 'letes. Lou himself admits in a Reddit "Ask Me Anything", among other sources, that he doesn't know much about vegetarian or vegan nutrition. For those questioning his advice to cut the processed foods while espousing protein shakes, he later writes that one could just as well drink milk after a workout and reap the rewards. It's up to us to choose! I will update my review after completing phase 1 of the program, at the very least. I am excited to try it after doing Starting Strength off and on since my second year of college. I don't know much about weight lifting but I wanted to try a program with a little more diversity than Squat-Deadlift-Bench/Squat-Pendlay Row-Olympic Press. Trying new programs is fun, and I am a sucker for balance ball jack-knifes. They just kind of rock. New Rules for Abs is next on the roster. And, I might be the minority here, but I thought the exercise diagrams and descriptions were perfectly explanatory for a book. Lou and co didn't write a 15 page Ode to Squats, but what they did put together was fine for first time lifters. You've got to go out and do it, though. Get up and go, and be not afraid! I'd recommend this book to other ladies looking for a new program or for those who want to get into strength training, because, why not? This book has a huge cult following and good results from the (many) different reviews I've read from actual trainers, first timers, experienced lifters, etc. This book is especially good for ladies new to the weights game because Lou targets and DESTROYS all the arguments against female weight lifting I have ever had the misery of hearing in my young life. I understand that weight lifting isn't for everyone in terms of enjoyment, but the silly comments KILL me each and every time. This book makes it abundantly clear that one must commit to the program and eating to support the body's needs. If you don't make a serious effort to self-educate and practice what you learn, you won't get anything out of going to the gym and sulking at the equipment. I have had friends who wanted to "get in shape" and followed me to the gym, only to shy away from every real exercise because it would make them "big" and wander over to the 2lb dumb bells, begging me to confirm for them that twisting the weight side to side with their wrists was a real exercise. Now I can plunk this book in front of prospective lifty ladies and walk off with nary a word. Awesome!

  13. 4 out of 5

    Martha

    Fun and inspiring. The first fitness book I've read that didn't make it seem impossible. He realistically looks at what it will take (equipment AND attitude) and encourages you that it is indeed possible to lift like a man and look like a goddess. I've been using this regime for over 6 months now and have dropped 25 pounds (last doctor weigh in) and 4 dress sizes. I have more energy and am so much more emotionally stable. This book outlines a workout program that I have found super benefical. Fun and inspiring. The first fitness book I've read that didn't make it seem impossible. He realistically looks at what it will take (equipment AND attitude) and encourages you that it is indeed possible to lift like a man and look like a goddess. I've been using this regime for over 6 months now and have dropped 25 pounds (last doctor weigh in) and 4 dress sizes. I have more energy and am so much more emotionally stable. This book outlines a workout program that I have found super benefical.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Deidre

    I really can't decide if I like this book or not. I don't hate it, but I wasn't blown away into happy bookland bliss with amazement. There is information that I don't agree with the author presenting the way he does that was a bit of a roadblock for me in enjoying the reading, the main one being his "get off the treadmill because we weren't meant to run long distances". That not only clashes with other research I've read, it also presents the idea that people should only be interested in fitness I really can't decide if I like this book or not. I don't hate it, but I wasn't blown away into happy bookland bliss with amazement. There is information that I don't agree with the author presenting the way he does that was a bit of a roadblock for me in enjoying the reading, the main one being his "get off the treadmill because we weren't meant to run long distances". That not only clashes with other research I've read, it also presents the idea that people should only be interested in fitness to look good, and not work on all aspects for their overall musclulature AND cardiovascular health. Athletes recognize the importance of both, and the author skims over that in favor of the importance of appearance and health of just muscles. Of course, I realize that there are people who only workout and keep physically active because it makes them look good, so I acknowledge that that's not an entirely off-base audience to cater to. I just didn't find any resonance within that message, because that's not the kind of athlete I am. The author is obviously limiting his focus for "The New Rules of Lifting" in terms of audience, and while that may work for some, it definitely didn't work for me. What I did like was the author's no-nonsense approach to the idea that women will "bulk up" or look "manly" with more aggressive weight routines. The myth that women must avoid the same exercises as men persists still, even with scientific research that proves that women benefit more from the same types of exercises, and I've found it annoying, at best, over the years. Good for the author for laying that myth out on the line and smashing it. So I would recommend this book for women who are interested in fitness, but don't have much, or any, background knowledge or base from which to go. The information presented is sound, doesn't go too far in depth, and will be useful for those people just generally interested in the fitness realm, probably with the idea that losing 10lbs and toning up is the New Year's Resolution. The author has a no-nonsense approach to presenting his writing, and it'll likely resonate fairly well with a general audience. I wouldn't recommend this book for people who already have a fairly decent background in nutrition and fitness, or athletes looking for performance tips, because you'll be bored, and probably annoyed at the author's somewhat ingratiating tone. There is no new information that is ground-breaking or need-to-know, and the author's tone can come off with a know-it-all kind of attitude that can be obnoxious at points. Overall impression? Good book, wrong audience focus. Definitely limited in terms of who I'd recommend to read it, that's for sure.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Jenn

    If you peruse women's fitness books and magazines, you'll notice an overuse of words like "sexy," "slim," "hot," "toned," all accompanied with an sexualized photo of a woman's butt or abs. With this, you get a really awesome picture of a woman's defined back and arms and the inspiring phrase of "looking like a goddess." That alone hooked me into buying it. After reading through the whole thing, I loved that Schuler advocates for eating properly and building strength, not trying to look good for o If you peruse women's fitness books and magazines, you'll notice an overuse of words like "sexy," "slim," "hot," "toned," all accompanied with an sexualized photo of a woman's butt or abs. With this, you get a really awesome picture of a woman's defined back and arms and the inspiring phrase of "looking like a goddess." That alone hooked me into buying it. After reading through the whole thing, I loved that Schuler advocates for eating properly and building strength, not trying to look good for others' sake. He spends time discouraging the reader from saying "I want to look like that model" because it's unrealistic, but counters it with promoting a healthy, strong lifestyle. He also pushes away some long-held concepts of women's fitness: 1) that women should focus on endurance -- those long, repetitive routines with little "Barbie" weights; and 2) that weight machines are beneficial in any way. Schuler point blank says go into the weight room and lift heavy things just like the guys -- but with better form. I'm about three weeks of a six month program. Is that too short of a period to tell if this system REALLY works? Sure. But just from a reading of this book, I do know that I have an insanely better understanding of HOW and WHEN to work-out. After years of on-again-off-again mixing cardio and "endurance" weight-lifting on machines, I saw no major positive results, nothing to ever keep me motivated and on-track in the long term. Two weeks in, I'm sore and exhausted and my muscles are swollen (but they look great!), but I feel awesome because I know I'm working my body efficiently. I think I've lost a little bit of chub (based solely on the unofficial pinch-my-love-handles test), but, the most important thing, I look forward to working out. These are efficient regimes -- the first six weeks include ten exercises only, five per work-out alternating schedule -- so I feel like I get into the weight room, do my thing, then I'm out. I'm not a slave to doing seven reps of Barbie weights. Bottom-line, this may not be for everyone, but if you have very basic weight-lifting experience and are interesting in being stronger, then go for it.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Eddy Allen

    cc: If you believe what most women's magazines tell you, muscles can be "shaped," "toned," and "sculpted" with nothing more than a little dumbbell that weighs less than a can of peas. But muscles aren't modeling clay, and the only way to transform them is to strengthen them. The New Rules of Lifting for Women is for the woman who's ready to throw down the "Barbie" weights and start a strength and conditioning program that will give her the body of her dreams. The book puts to rest the shop-worn no cc: If you believe what most women's magazines tell you, muscles can be "shaped," "toned," and "sculpted" with nothing more than a little dumbbell that weighs less than a can of peas. But muscles aren't modeling clay, and the only way to transform them is to strengthen them. The New Rules of Lifting for Women is for the woman who's ready to throw down the "Barbie" weights and start a strength and conditioning program that will give her the body of her dreams. The book puts to rest the shop-worn notion that women who train with heavy weights will bulk up. Nonsense! Women simply don't have enough testosterone to pack on muscle like a bodybuilder. Here's the truth: lifting weights not only makes you stronger, it also makes you leaner. In fact, most women would have to run twice as long to receive the same fat-burning benefits as weight lifters. A better workout in less time may sound too good to be true, but champion trainer Alwyn Cosgrove creates six months' worth of workouts that will build strength, burn fat, and rev up the metabolism. His total body workouts target all the major muscle groups, and each exercise is accompanied by clear black- and-white photographs that illustrate proper technique and form. A nutrition plan is another key feature of the book. To gain strength you have to feed muscle, and nutritionist CassandraForsythe has designed a regimen to achieve this goal. She strongly recommends small, frequent meals and offers meal plans, along with fifty recipes, to satisfy women's special needs through breakfast, lunch, dinner, and snacks. The New Rules of Lifting for Women will become the standard for smart women who take their fitness goals seriously. by Lou Schuler

  17. 5 out of 5

    Megan

    Don't get me wrong, I'm sold on the whole 'heavy lifting' argument, but I found this book poorly written. Firstly, it's written by a guy who's made a living out of giving health and fitness advice out to people in various media forums over the years, and clearly he's been either heavily influenced by either editors or money (or both) which leaves me questioning his credibility. I felt most of the book focussed on refuting previously conflicting advice he's given over the years, and justifying wh Don't get me wrong, I'm sold on the whole 'heavy lifting' argument, but I found this book poorly written. Firstly, it's written by a guy who's made a living out of giving health and fitness advice out to people in various media forums over the years, and clearly he's been either heavily influenced by either editors or money (or both) which leaves me questioning his credibility. I felt most of the book focussed on refuting previously conflicting advice he's given over the years, and justifying why he said the opposite to which he's advocating in the past. Secondly, there's some advice he's given which left me raising an eyebrow more than once (advocating sweeteners and lean cuisines?! Really?) Lastly, it's more pedantic than it needs to be. If lifting heavy is something that interests you, then you're going to take it on board, but like most things, I tend to absorb what I think is important and relevant, and filter out all the BS to leave me with an ingredient to add to an array of information I've learnt over the years which contributes to my overall health and wellbeing.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Bookfanatic

    You have to get through about 100 pages of the book to even reach the weight lifting exercises. And even then, the photos aren't very good and there aren't any modifications. If you are a true beginner to lifting weights, this book isn't for you. For those who use this book, you will need weights, a barbell, a pullup device on your door, step, and other home gym equipment. The author's premise is to encourage women to lift heavier weights than 2-3 pounds. I agree. I've seen great results from he You have to get through about 100 pages of the book to even reach the weight lifting exercises. And even then, the photos aren't very good and there aren't any modifications. If you are a true beginner to lifting weights, this book isn't for you. For those who use this book, you will need weights, a barbell, a pullup device on your door, step, and other home gym equipment. The author's premise is to encourage women to lift heavier weights than 2-3 pounds. I agree. I've seen great results from heavier weights. The authors don't believe in doing isolated exercises for certain muscles so for example there isn't anything specific for triceps, calves, or biceps in this book. He, yes the main author is a man writing a book aimed at women, says the large compound exercises will work those other smaller muscles. His writing style isn't very clear and he promotes the use of protein shakes (he works for a company that makes those and he does disclose that fact in the book). There's good information here, but nothing new or revolutionary. I expected more from the book. I was disappointed.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Karen

    Haven't tried the diet/exercise plan yet, but I plan to start this lifting routine after I complete a 10k race in a few weeks. Since I'm mostly vegetarian/vegan, I don't expect to follow the diet. I like the conversational and no-nonsense tone of the writing and the author's avoidance of bunk pseudoscience that so many fitness and health books seem to thrive on. Haven't tried the diet/exercise plan yet, but I plan to start this lifting routine after I complete a 10k race in a few weeks. Since I'm mostly vegetarian/vegan, I don't expect to follow the diet. I like the conversational and no-nonsense tone of the writing and the author's avoidance of bunk pseudoscience that so many fitness and health books seem to thrive on.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Jessica

    A good, informative read - I'll try to remember to come back and update this review in 6 months once I've completed the program. A good, informative read - I'll try to remember to come back and update this review in 6 months once I've completed the program.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Deana

    ETA: Ahh yes, after reading some of the other reviews about this, I should add... something I did not like about the book. But I'd forgotten about it until I read the reviews, because I like the workout plans and advice. I do remember being turned off by a bunch of stuff as I was reading it though. Most of those things were that it is written by a man, about women, and he doesn't let you forget that. He makes comments about it, most of which aren't really offensive (to me), but it's annoying and ETA: Ahh yes, after reading some of the other reviews about this, I should add... something I did not like about the book. But I'd forgotten about it until I read the reviews, because I like the workout plans and advice. I do remember being turned off by a bunch of stuff as I was reading it though. Most of those things were that it is written by a man, about women, and he doesn't let you forget that. He makes comments about it, most of which aren't really offensive (to me), but it's annoying and ... right, obviously, this book would be better coming from a woman rather than a man. The only comment that made me go "UGH" is when he apologized for "thinking like a man" and commented on how low a woman might be expected to go during a push-up, basically because her breasts might get in the way. *** This book was recommended to me by a friend at the New Year's event we attended, who was (is) making her way through the recommended workouts. I had already decided it would be worth my while to do some strength training this time around during my training season, so I decided to check it out as well. I originally borrowed the book from the library, but in the end decided it was worth shelling out the cash for. Of course, I got the book expecting it to be a bunch of workout recommendations. I started reading, and 50-60 pages in, hadn't gotten to any such thing! But I was really ok with this -- the first third of this book was fascinating. The authors did not spend it telling me what exercises to do, but why I should listen to them. And by that, I don't mean "here is a list with our credentials" (although there was a small bit of that), but "here are the scientific reasons why the things we suggest should work and the things you are usually told to do aren't the best". I like scientific reasons. And I especially like them when there are sources provided that I can check up on, and when I use Google I find more information, that points to this being real science instead of pretend science. Yay! The most interesting parts to me were not the evidence that says women's muscles work much the same way as men (I figured that was the case, actually), but the reasons why endurance exercises (my exercise of choice) may not be the best for weightloss after an initial period, and how you can use interval training to make endurance exercise better for that purpose. As well, when it came to the nutrition chapters, he railed against the idea that women should be eating 1200-1500 calories per day, which is without fail the advice given by pretty much every weightloss website in the world (myfitnesspal, for example, insisists I need a 1200 calorie diet to lose a pound a week, and 1500 calorie diet to maintain my current weight). He gave lots of good reasons why I should be eating more like 2000 (the number one reason being that sure, you'll lose weight, but you are doing a lot of that by losing muscles and getting weaker), caveated on the idea that we need to increase our metabolism, not eat less food. I think it will take a while for me to really trust this advice, but I'm not opposed to trying it out. (Eat more food and still lose weight? Who wouldn't?!) The middle portion of the book is all about the meal plans. I'll admit, while some of the suggested meals do sound delicious... I won't be following them, with few exceptions. Yes, the authors say that my results may not be as good if I don't do so... but I have both a toddler and a husband who eats like one, and I don't want to make separate meals (honestly, I don't want to make meals at ALL). However, I am trying to follow the spirit of the meal plans. I'm using the tracking in MFP to both slowly increase my calorie count and (more importantly according to this book) adjust my proportions of fat/carbs/protein to be more equal. But one thing that I am doing is drinking a protein shake as soon as possible after each workout. They are not as bad as I expected (although the fruity concoction recipe was just gross) although I need to try different protein powders because the one I'm using doesn't dissolve very well. Finally, the last third of the book addresses the workout plans. I already had a lot of workout equipment in our basement that I purchased with good intentions a few years ago and have used 3 or 4 times. However, I did go to Dick's and purchase a standard bar and some plates, because this book does focus a lot on barbell exercises (although it does provide alternates using dumbells for most exercises if you really don't want to spend the money). Things I like about these workouts: - they take less than 30 minutes, including the warmup! - for the most part, I can do them in my basement (but you do have to buy some equipment). - I feel like I'm making progress quickly And honestly, I can't think of anything I don't like. My body parts feel like jelly the next day? It hasn't been long enough for me to speak of results yet, I'm only about halfway through phase 1. I do see that already I can do these exercises with more weight than I could on day 1, so there's progress. But in terms of weightloss... not much. Plus I'm laid up from any of my regular endurance training with an injury. I'll keep you updated!

  22. 4 out of 5

    LadyS

    First, I appreciate how the information was organized in this book albeit there are some parts I felt were a little wordy. Okay, I get it. The author obviously intended to give as much relevant information as possible and there are no short cuts to that. Personally, I have seen positive results from incorporating heavier weights into my workout, I can only testify that it does indeed help in shaping one's body. However, this book points out there is still so much work for me to do. Especially in First, I appreciate how the information was organized in this book albeit there are some parts I felt were a little wordy. Okay, I get it. The author obviously intended to give as much relevant information as possible and there are no short cuts to that. Personally, I have seen positive results from incorporating heavier weights into my workout, I can only testify that it does indeed help in shaping one's body. However, this book points out there is still so much work for me to do. Especially in terms of nutrition and weighing macros. This is the big challenge for me. I would definitely consider adding this book as a reference. I recommend it to ladies who want to build strength, and add muscle !

  23. 5 out of 5

    أمل يعقوب Amal Yaqoob

    Wonderful! I find this guide as an excellent for both beginners and intermediate trainees.And about professionalathletes and trainers, I bet they may be very familiar with what the author is talking about hence I'd suggest you to read another book if you are looking for deep information. Moreover, there weren't many information in this book as I was expecting to find. The book is more of a guide with a training program and nutrition. The author is trying to send a message that says both men and wom Wonderful! I find this guide as an excellent for both beginners and intermediate trainees.And about professionalathletes and trainers, I bet they may be very familiar with what the author is talking about hence I'd suggest you to read another book if you are looking for deep information. Moreover, there weren't many information in this book as I was expecting to find. The book is more of a guide with a training program and nutrition. The author is trying to send a message that says both men and women should be training equally and that we all have the same muscles, which I totally agree with. However, I still wish the author mentioned more interesting facts. Fantastic, definitely recommend it. I hope to see more of an advanced version from this author, wouldn't hesitate to buy.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Billie Cotterman

    I'm going to try a new challenge and continue lifting weights. While I love the BodyBeast DVDs, I want to vary my workout and also listen to my own music. Plus, I want to learn more about weight lifting. I'm going to try a new challenge and continue lifting weights. While I love the BodyBeast DVDs, I want to vary my workout and also listen to my own music. Plus, I want to learn more about weight lifting.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Sara Snider

    Just started stage one and have discovered new levels of soreness I previously hadn't thought possible. The book itself was informative and entertaining to read, though a bit overwhelming for a complete lifting newbie like me. I've had to revisit some of the sections several times. I'm glad to have read it, though, and am looking forward to seeing how I progress on the program. Just started stage one and have discovered new levels of soreness I previously hadn't thought possible. The book itself was informative and entertaining to read, though a bit overwhelming for a complete lifting newbie like me. I've had to revisit some of the sections several times. I'm glad to have read it, though, and am looking forward to seeing how I progress on the program.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Rachel

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. After reading this book, I can honestly say that I was looking at my strength training program entirely the wrong way! I never believed that the "Barbie" bells would actually do any thing for me but I also never thought I should attempt to lift weights like a man. The authors of this book created what I would consider to be really good comprehensive plan for strength, conditioning and nutrition for women. The first part of the book, "Behind the Cover Lines", is a scientific discussion about why w After reading this book, I can honestly say that I was looking at my strength training program entirely the wrong way! I never believed that the "Barbie" bells would actually do any thing for me but I also never thought I should attempt to lift weights like a man. The authors of this book created what I would consider to be really good comprehensive plan for strength, conditioning and nutrition for women. The first part of the book, "Behind the Cover Lines", is a scientific discussion about why women should stop focusing so much on cardiovascular exercises and start lifting weights. The trick is that lifting light weights for an insane number of repetitions won't do you any good either. The author talks about muscles becoming efficient over time when you do the same exercise over and over again.While this is great for my running because that means I will continue to get faster, it isn't good when I am trying to build strength. Also, women shouldn't worry about building muscles like men because it is scientifically impossible. Women don't have enough testosterone in their bodies. The second part of the book, "You Aren't What You Don't Eat", is all about nutrition. The biggest issue for me to grasp was that diets that restrict caloric intake are NOT the best way to lose fat. When I started my weight loss journey, I religiously counted calories and made sure that I had calorie deficit at the end of each day. The problem with this method is that the weight comes off from all over the body, including both muscle and fat. The nutrition plan is designed to help you lose fat and gain muscle. The third part of the book, "Resistance is Vital", is the workout program. Even though this is the part I was the most excited about, I am glad it was at the end of the book because it forced me to read the entire thing before I jumped into the workouts. The program is divided into 7 stages with each one targeting a different area. It was suggested that you workout 2 to 3 times a week with at least one day in between workouts. The exercises are explained very thoroughly with step-by-step instructions and pictures. Overall, I thought the book was very well written and very informative. The author presented a lot of information that made a lot of sense to me and really helped to convince that lifting heavy weights is the best way to accomplish my goals. The nutrition plan isn't as structured as some of the other programs out there, which I really liked because eating a million egg whites every day doesn't appeal to me.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Mishka84

    Great book! If you are looking to get into weightlifting or even if you're not but you're not getting results from the gym, put down the Barbie dumbbells and read this! The gloves are off in this frank and often funny insight into the world of weightlifting. The majority of women are terrified of the weights bench and even the heavier free weights with this shared mentality that if they start to lift heavy they will sprout Arnie muscles over night and 'bulk up' or look too 'big' Arrrggghhhh Yes yo Great book! If you are looking to get into weightlifting or even if you're not but you're not getting results from the gym, put down the Barbie dumbbells and read this! The gloves are off in this frank and often funny insight into the world of weightlifting. The majority of women are terrified of the weights bench and even the heavier free weights with this shared mentality that if they start to lift heavy they will sprout Arnie muscles over night and 'bulk up' or look too 'big' Arrrggghhhh Yes you will look like a man in a dress or the woman on the right if you take steroids and testosterone and lift heavy! The woman on the left lifts heavy but does so naturally. Our bodies are not built the same as men (its true, believe it or not) and the common misconception that we will suddenly look like Hulk if we pick up anything heavier than the 3lb Barbie weights invariably stops women from incorporating weight training into their quest to lose weight. This leads to failure to lose weight (or increases the likelihood of putting it all back on again after a few months of starving ourselves)as weight training is without question the most effective way to really tone up and develop a tight body, 'most women would have to run twice as long to receive the same fat-burning benefits as weight lifters.' The New Rules of Lifting for Women explains all the myths and misconceptions surrounding women and weightlifting, has a detailed nutrition plan and weights training programme designed to change your mentality and your body in 6 months. Loved it.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Samantha

    This was a great book to read. I had started off lifting weights with one of my guy friends. At first I resisted because I would tell him that as a girl I couldn't do the same things that a guy does in the weight lifting department. After awhile I fell in love with weight lifting and wanted more information. The New Rules of lifting really teaches you a lot of information without being a boring book. I haven't started the exercise program yet, I wanted to read the whole book and know the whole p This was a great book to read. I had started off lifting weights with one of my guy friends. At first I resisted because I would tell him that as a girl I couldn't do the same things that a guy does in the weight lifting department. After awhile I fell in love with weight lifting and wanted more information. The New Rules of lifting really teaches you a lot of information without being a boring book. I haven't started the exercise program yet, I wanted to read the whole book and know the whole program before just jumping in. I'm genuinely excited to get in the gym this morning and start the program and see how well I do with them all. The free weights portion of the gym no longer automatically has a "Guys Only" sign up in my brain when I look towards it when I go into the gym. I highly recommend that all woman read this because it dispels two of the greatest myths 1.) That as a woman if you weight lift you won't have muscles bulging out like they do in body building competitions (yes, there are things that you can do to get this.) and 2.) Woman can do the same exercises that men do.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Kristi

    I really enjoyed this book. I waited until I did a couple of the workouts to review it and I can say it is excellent. The first part of the book is devoted to dispelling all the myths associated with women and weight lifting such as women shouldn't lift heavy weights, etc. While that may sound boring and technical it was just the opposite. I found myself laughing out loud at some of the things he wrote. It also has a fairly extensive section on nutrition with recipes for meal planning included. I really enjoyed this book. I waited until I did a couple of the workouts to review it and I can say it is excellent. The first part of the book is devoted to dispelling all the myths associated with women and weight lifting such as women shouldn't lift heavy weights, etc. While that may sound boring and technical it was just the opposite. I found myself laughing out loud at some of the things he wrote. It also has a fairly extensive section on nutrition with recipes for meal planning included. Contrary to what you may think he doesn't push dieting. Rather he focuses on balancing the carbs, fat, and protein in your meals. The workouts are tough and not too long. They are very well explained and laid out. There are extensive instructions on how to do each exercise plus different variations of each to make them increasingly harder. Excellent for a beginner or an experienced lifter. Wonderful to give you a workout schedule to follow. There are at the least 6 months of workouts (more if you work out less frequently).

  30. 4 out of 5

    Lee Gingras

    Mens' and womens' bodies aren't *that* different, but understanding what differences there are was a big reason I picked up this book, and I wasn't disappointed. I really like the pragmatic, whole-body approach to building practical strength, rather than the stereotypical approach of isolating specific muscles with machines and doing millions of crunches. This is a good place for a first-timer at picking up heavy things to start. The section on food argues well against cutting calories, which is Mens' and womens' bodies aren't *that* different, but understanding what differences there are was a big reason I picked up this book, and I wasn't disappointed. I really like the pragmatic, whole-body approach to building practical strength, rather than the stereotypical approach of isolating specific muscles with machines and doing millions of crunches. This is a good place for a first-timer at picking up heavy things to start. The section on food argues well against cutting calories, which is necessary for a women's strength-training book. I do have to say, though, the recipes in this book do NOT look good. I'm a foodie and probably biased, but they should be taken as inspiration and guidance (I didn't know you could put protein powder in your breakfast oatmeal) rather than recipes (oatmeal protein pancakes? seriously?).

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