Reading lists

Books to kickstart your 2020, as picked by The Fitness Chef

The man behind the 'no B.S.' Instagram fitness account talks us through what he's reading right now, from self-help antidotes to game-changing memoirs.

The Fitness Chef
The Fitness Chef's must reads

He's the no-nonsense nutrition coach and personal trainer behind the Instagram account Thefitnesschef.

Graeme Tomlinson has amassed a whopping half a million followers with his straight-talking approach to health and nutrition, routinely debunking weight loss myths and arguing against the smoke and mirrors of toxic diet culture.

Recently releasing his first book, Eat What You Like & Lose Weight For Life, a gimmick-free guide to eating what you love, he told us about the inspiring reads that have jumpstarted his year and the books he likes to peruse when he’s not busy amassing thousands of likes on his grid.

I loved this book by Mark Manson because it makes us question our decisions. We often get hung up on life events and behaviours that aren’t actually important and this is refreshing in a sea of self-help books that waffle their way to nowhere. It’s a manifesto for change, where Manson has nailed the art of empowering you to make decisions that really matter, and will benefit you in the long run.

A Clear Blue Sky by Jonny Bairstow

Having met Jonny a few times whilst playing cricket in Yorkshire over a decade ago, watching his rise to be one of England’s main players has been a delight. But this book is not about his cricketing brilliance as such – it reveals the deep tragedy he and his family faced when they lost his father to suicide. For him to open up to the world about it is remarkably brave. An immaculate example, not only for any young aspiring sportsperson, but for anyone who has encountered a similar tragedy or circumstances in their personal life.

4 Hour Work Week by Timothy Ferriss

This book offers a revolutionary perspective for those looking to fulfil their dreams. With practical solutions and hard-hitting self-assessment, it functions as a liberating means to aid the transition from viewing your job as gruelling ‘work’ compared to an enjoyed profession, saving time for the things that mean most to you, such as family and leisure.

Written by the co-founder of Nike, the take-home from this book, for me, is that perseverance can eventually lead to great things. It shows that even the biggest companies in the world have had both setbacks and good fortune. Phil’s bravery is encapsulated by a series of unorthodox business decisions which eventually lead to him flourishing years later. But the overriding constant throughout was his burning passion for Nike trainers to be the best in the world. It offers useful insight and level headed perspective for budding entrepreneurs who are currently overwhelmed, or just in need of some inspiration.

Unf*ck Yourself by Gary John Bishop

If you know me, you know I enjoy the tough-love approach and this book definitely adopts that tone. It’s a fresh perspective with powerful takeaways that may just be the catalyst required for those stuck in a rut. It makes you realise that you do have control over life’s decisions and you can follow your dreams – you just have to get on with it. It also gets to the point fast, which makes putting the art into practice a lot easier for the reader.

Eat What You Life & Lose Weight For Life by The Fitness Chef is out now.

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