Aug 022012
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As many of you may know, or may not know. My major in college was English Creative Writing. Yes, you read right. People think biology, kinesiology, exercise science when they ask what I majored in college. They are surprised when I tell them the truth. Strength and conditioning was always a passion of mine and soon figured that I could make it a career.

The biggest thing I relied on for my success in the industry was my personal experience, books, books, and more books. Learning and researching about strength and conditioning is a big obsession for me. There are points when I know I should pump the brakes a little bit.

If you are interested in learning more about strength and fitness, I highly recommend the following books. These particular ones were there since the beginning and every so often I refer back to them. If you want to be successful in something, learn as much as you can about it.

Use what is useful and disregard what is useless. – Bruce Lee

Aipa’s 5 Top Strength & Fitness Books

1. Starting Strength

This was actually one of the first strength books that I got as a birthday present from a very close friend. Mark Rippetoe is a nationally known strength coach and author. He is known for focusing strictly on the basics and building on them. Great book for a beginner, and I’m sure if you ask any other strength coach out there they will have this book in their library as well.

2. Strength Training

This is a great book if you are looking to start a full program but need some guidance to put it together. This book is written by a team of experts of the NSCA (National Strength and Conditioning Association) and will give you a step by step on how to plan your own personal training program.

3. Core Performance

Core Performance was written by Mark Verstegen who I have been following since I started in the industry 6 years ago. He has very thorough process on how he goes about training his athletes which anyone can benefit from. Verstegen pays a lot of attention to the whole core – abs, lower back, hips, and thighs.

4. 5/3/1

When Jim Wendler came out with this book, it took off like crazy. Not just because Jim Wendler is a bad ass and knows what he is talking about. The program works. The program focuses on squats, deadlifts, bench press, and military press. The book will guide you through the whole program. There will be some number crunching to find out your maxes and percentages but that’s what it takes to get strong and big.

5. Never Let Go

Now if you want something a little different from the usual program books that give you guidelines and exercises, I highly recommend this book by Dan John. Yes he knows a lot and has been a strength longer than I’ve been alive but he is also a very witty person as well. He’ll for sure have you laughing or you may think he is just an ass.

Closing Thoughts

Hopefully you see a book you feel you could learn from. I have adopted and experimented with many ideas from all of these authors. If you have a book you think could help others, let us know in the comments below.


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