Deep Fitness –
The Mindful, Science-Based Strength-Training Method to Transform Your Well-Being in Just 30 Minutes a Week
Author: Philip Shepherd, Andrei Yakovenko
North Atlantic Books
“Deep Fitness” is a 302-page book based on fitness through strength training by authors Philip Shepherd and Andrei Yakovenko. (Philip Shepherd is one of the leaders of the global embodiment movement, Andrei Yakovenko is the founder of New Element Training, which focuses on improving your entire metabolism with a half-hour workout once or twice a week.)
This 302-page book covers the simple steps that anyone can take to make a major difference in their health and vitality. It combines the principles of strength training and embodied mindfulness.
The authors note that the loss of strength that many of us are experiencing effects not just our ability to run or move through our day-to-day activities but it can affect our ability to breathe. They also note that aging and diseases of modern civilization are 100% related to sarcopenia (the loss of muscle mass as we age). A nice addition is a partial list of conditions associated with sarcopenia.
Some very interesting thoughts are presented in this book, such as muscle doing much more than moving our limbs around (it also acts as an endocrine organ in that it produces and secretes endocrine-signaling mediators that promote the beneficial effects of exercise on almost all cell types and organs.
Another interesting thought is the overview of the way in which myokines (a peptide or protein secreted or released from skeletal muscle cells) affect our health. The stronger a muscle is, the more myokines it produces.
The authors set up the working part of this book by going into the principles of strength training, including momentary muscle failure, one set is enough, slower is better, and the thought that strengthening happens after a workout.
There is a strong section on getting the most from Mindful Strength Training To Failure – one that is based on being honest with ourselves. We must look within and see where MSTF fits into our lives, and how it matches our personal values. Then we must follow up by putting the MSTF principles to work in our lives.
There are several workouts presented: a whole-body workout (with emphasis on the upper body), a workout that emphasizes the lower body and core muscles, and a comprehensive whole-body workout. There is an entire section of exercises that are machine based, with excellent instructions, including photos. There is another section that deals with exercises done without using a machine. Again, with excellent instructions and photos.
Included in this book are four personal accounts of how individuals are making the best use of the MSFT program. It is a wonderful bird’s eye view into how this program can be used.
At the end of the book is a glossary, reference notes from the authors, a resource section, and an index.
While the authors include background information and terminology that is specific to the scientifically oriented, it is presented in a manner that is readily understood. The information provided is detailed and informative, with charts and lists that give a broader idea of what is involved. Each chapter includes talking points on what was covered, which act as an excellent reference.
The bottom line here is very important – including strength training in our lives not only improves the quality of our life, but has a positive effect on our aging process. It is something that we can all do for ourselves and encourage those around us to do. An amazing mind/body connection and a wonderful tool for rewriting our own view of aging! We are talking half an hour a week of resistance training – that is doable!
Muscle is an active resource for better living! I recommend this book to everyone who is looking for a better mind/body connection and a better quality of life.
© March 2023 Bonnie Cehovet
Reproduction is prohibited without the written permission of the author.
I am soon to be 43 and am noticing less muscles in my legs, which were quite muscular for a woman when I was younger. SO, with exercising, less is more is basically the rule? I mean less cycles and slower performance – makes sense as it keeps the muscle in a state of working for longer duration. I will take a look at the book.
I know that you will enjoy the book!