Thinner, Leaner, Stronger will change your life. It will also make you want to spend money: spend money on other books by Michael Matthew, new gym outfits, and spend money on a gym membership. Sorry that I am about to make you want to spend money. It is for a good cause and it is less expensive than doctor visits.
When I find a great book about training or nutrition for athletes, I devour it in a few days. I finished Thinner, Leaner, Stronger by Michael Matthews in 4 days. It’s a 433 page book. It might be the most motivating and informational fitness book I have ever read.
If you plan to be active for the rest of your life, whether that is climbing, surfing, snowboarding, running, or whatever, you need to lift heavy weights. Resistance training for an older athlete is as critical to success as eating a balanced diet for nutrition and cardio for heart health. Thinner, Leaner, Stronger will teach you everything you need to know.
- Bigger, Leaner, Stronger is the “guy’s version.”
TLS Life Changing Take-Away #1: Carbs are good.
I eat 100g of carbs everyday. Before TLS, like practically every other diet conscious person out there these days, I avoided carbs. I rarely ate bananas, whole wheat goods, sweet potatoes, all things I love. TLS changed all that.
TLS taught me, once and for all, that by starving myself of carbs, I was denying muscles their favorite fuel for both workouts and recovery. Thinner, Leaner, Stronger made me a more informed athlete regarding nutrition. Because of it, I have adopted a simple and sustainable diet that will make me strong and healthy for life.
TLS Life Changing Take-Away #2: Cardio can be bad.
Too much cardio will hinder muscle growth. BUT, you don’t have to quit running! Limiting intense cardio to 1-2 hours a week is key. So, for those who like to bang out 45 minutes on the elliptical 4 times a week or go on hour long runs a few times a week, that is actually hindering your muscle growth.
The reasoning behind this? Glycogen. Intense cardio burns glycogen that is better ‘spent’ lifting for maximum strength in muscles. Ensure that you are ‘spending’ glycogen in the most productive way possible to meet goals and do the sports you want to do.
It also depends on specific fitness needs. For myself as a climber, I used the TLS program to get to where I can squat 3 sets of 8 reps at 90lbs, and I no longer increase weight on that lift. These days, I do the TLS leg workout once a week and my second leg workout of the week is a 3-5 mile run.
TLS Life Changing Take Away #3: Eat more protein
I was eating half of the protein I should have been eating. For athletes older than 35; we need extra protein. Not only do we need protein, we need high quality protein that will stimulate muscle growth. The days of Fruity Pebble flavored cheap protein powder are over. Find the stuff with its Amino Acid profile on the side.
I am not a big person, and my optimal protein intake is at least 85 grams a day. That is a lot. It takes planning to get that much protein in your daily diet and not overeat! This post is all about how to fit all that protein in without blowing up your calorie intake for the day.
Thinner, Leaner, Stronger Major Take-Aways
- A very do-able resistance training plan that evolves in five 6-8 week phases
- Calculated nutrition plans with macronutrient targets based on body composition goals
- Common myths debunked with research on supplements, nutrition, and fads
- Inspiration, inspiration, inspiration.
If you have never read a book about fitness and nutrition before, Thinner, Leaner, Stronger is the best place to start. The invaluable information on fitness and nutrition that you will gain from this book will keep you informed and inspired for years to come. Plus, there is an awesome community of support on Facebook!
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