Fitness guru Michaels, a fitness and life coach who has appeared on NBC's The Biggest Loser, brings her tough-love style to the pages of her first offering. For those familiar with Loser, Michael's no-excuses approach here may seem less intimidating than it does to those meeting her on television. She writes with an edge, warning readers that they cannot make excuses, they will work hard and they will suffer setbacks, but they will also change their lives for the better. Her "3-S" (Self, Science and Sweat) plan covers the mental and physical, and Michaels dedicates equal sections of the book to each. In Self, she announces to readers that she was an "overweight and unhappy teenager" who took charge of her life, challenging readers to do the same. While no book has the power to change a person, the tips Michaels provides-create a support system, keep a journal, change your self-talk-do. In Science, Michaels dispels common diet myths (skipping meals is best, diet pills work), provides recipes for meals and snacks and introduces the concept of fast-, slow- and balanced-oxidizers, which determines a person's ideal diet. The final Sweat chapters include easy-to-follow exercises accompanied by photos, and a five-day-per-week, 12-week fitness program centered on burn-and-tone cardio training. The book and coaching come relatively cheap, but to follow the program without substitution exercises, readers will need access to a gym or a weight machine. And, unfortunately, Michaels does not make house calls.
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