T Nation

Good Training Book for a Beginner?


A beginner asked me about a "workout bible"

His post on a webmaster board

Is there a good reference book for working out?

Something that covers different exercises, talks about different muscle groups and some diet.

Anyone reccommend anything? A physical book would be great so I'm not chained to the screen.

I recommended Starting Strength (2nd edition)
but a bit later he mentioned, he didn't even know Delts were shoulders.
So what are some good books for him?


arnold's encyclopedia of bodybuilding?


I would perhaps good with Scrawny To Brawny for a good starter program, then he can get into more complex programs after he gives this book a good run. Explains everything in beginner terms and the diet is down by John Berardi which is a decent one and easy to follow.

A anatomy book would be good for reference to muscles that he reads about.


Strength Training Anatomy - 2nd Edition by Frederic Delavier is your best bet. Great book. Nice illustrations of the anatomy for almost every possible exercise.


The Gym - written by: Big mutherfucker training in one as you pay attention to how they do it.


There's really no training book I can think of that I would recommend to a complete beginner.
Ok, starting strength etc, but hmmm... Not really.

As for strength training anatomy, well, it doesn't really teach you much about training as such. The author also does not mention anything about proper setup for exercises (bench, for example). He just writes something along the lines of
1) lie down on the bench
2) press
(ok, a little more elaborate, but you get the idea... That stuff doesn't help at all)

The book has some info on lifting-related injuries though, such as how one can tear ones' long head of the triceps on back work, pec tears, elbow trauma/abrasions from repeatedly locking out under load etc.


True, but at least he'll know what a hamstring is and know the terminology of the exercise without asking you about that silly exercise that makes all the other people in the gym look funny at you, but you never see one of them actually doing it, where you lift a barbell from the ground while you straighten your knees and back and subsequentially "hump" it once with a liitle hip trust and then let it fall on the floor again and do this barbell-loving ritual all over again...


X2, but I would also echo what Professor X is saying here.


The book of muscle is really good starting point if you want to learn about how all the muscles work and really see the proper way to preform exercises..... but as far as the workouts go they aren't really bodybuilding centered

if you want to learn about how the muscles in the body work, and have nice pictures to look at of many many exercises get that.

then again there is always google.

as far as workouts go, i agree with X.

Find someone bigger than you, ask them what they suggest you do, get yourself on a 'good diet', do what they told you, grow, repeat. it's not rocket science.