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Essential Reading

Just wondering what you experienced guys consider essential reads. Not just an article here or there, I mean books. What are some of the books that actually had an impact on the way you train or the way you train others?

I’ve read a lot of books, but here are my three favorites, in no particular order:

-Science and Practice of Strength Training by Vladimir Zatsiorsky

-Exercise Physiology: Human Bioenergetics and Its Applications by Brooks, Fahey, and White.

-The Sports Book by DB Hammer

The first book will give you a good thorough run through of almost everything you need to know about training. I’ve yet to come across a more complete piece of sports training literature written in such an easily digestible manner.

The second book covers the physiology behind exercise quite well, though actual training info is limited and the book requires that reading be done attentively.

And the third book contains what is in my opinion the greatest training system ever compiled. Don’t let its detractors fool you, the system contained within the sports book appears to have been put together from all of the best information available in the best sports science texts.

There are dozens of other great books out there, but really you can’t go wrong with any of the above.

Just a comment on the Zatziorsky book to make sure you don’t run off and buy it thinking it’s something other than what it is…

It is completely readable for the layperson, but it is well on the technical and non-practical side of things. It doesn’t discuss the performance of any lifts or much practical information on program design. I can’t agree with the statement that the book contains “everything you need to know about training.”

In fact I’d almost say it contains “everything you DON’T need to know about training.” I don’t think this book influenced my training at all. That doesn’t necessarily mean it’s worthless; just know what you’re in for.

I guess I should have more accurately said that it tells you everything about what is behind your training. There’s little in the way of program design or exercise execution in there, but those are covered in the third book I recommended.

Burn the Fat, Feed the Muscle by Tom Venuto.

It’s much more geared towards nutrition, but it gave me an excellent base and I think it’s a must read for anyone serious about eating right (whether to be healthier or to aid your training or both).

It’s very easily digestable, and he makes everything make so much sense right off the bat. I still go back and read this book 2 or 3 times every year just to refresh myself.

-dizzle

Dinosaur Training by Brooks Kubik.

The Strongest Shall Survive by Bill Starr.

[quote]derek wrote:
Dinosaur Training by Brooks Kubik.[/quote]

Yep, that ones on my short list

[quote]maverickbu wrote:
Just wondering what you experienced guys consider essential reads. Not just an article here or there, I mean books. What are some of the books that actually had an impact on the way you train or the way you train others? [/quote]

Do you want to know what to think or how to think? If the latter, then Mel Siff’s “Facts and Fallacies of Fitness” is the book to start off with.

New Rules of Lifting is pretty solid, especially if you are starting out. Even if you arent new, its still a good read. I lent my copy to a grad student friend of mine who has 10 years of training behind him (and a physique that shows it) and he wouldnt give it back!

Paul Kelso’s Powerlifting Basics, Texas Style.

Starting Strength