Click here to read reviewer Marie D. Jones' take on Lean, Long & Strong.
Fitness expert Wini Linguvic gained national attention after teaming up with talk show host Montel Williams to write Body Change - a straightforward fitness plan designed to produce dramatic results quickly. Now she has penned a follow up, Lean, Long & Strong, which is based on the same principles but geared toward the needs of women. In it, she lays out a specific fitness plan to target the most common problem areas for women and supplements the routine with tips and guidance for living a healthier life.
There is no question that the focus of this book is on a structured fitness plan which, according to Lunguvic, must include three elements: cardio exercise, strength training and stretching. According to her, the absence of any of these elements will dramatically reduce the effectiveness of any fitness program. The bulk of the book provides simple directions and sharp clear photographs illustrating how each of a host of exercises should be performed. There are also useful tips for perfecting each technique (such as ensuring proper breathing) to optimize the results.
Although the textual information presented seems to be a mere afterthought, it happens to be quite valuable. Not only is it presented in a user-friendly tone, but most of it can be easily incorporated into one’s everyday life. For example, in the section on nutrition, Linguvic provides six commonsense principles which include keeping a food journal, drinking more water, learning about the benefits of certain carbs, eating healthy fats, and remaining consistently aware of what you consume. She presents a refreshing and practical approach to these tenets, recognizing that for many people these changes may be dramatic. Based on this reality, she emphasizes that adopting even one or two of these principles is a significant step toward better fitness.
The book does present a plan that, if followed, will likely produce results. The main problem here is that, practically speaking, it is difficult to learn, follow and master a fitness plan that is introduced and taught on the pages of a book. I have always found myself more likely to stay on track if there is a live person or videotape to offer assistance. Nevertheless, this is a valiant effort to overcome the inevitable challenge of putting a fitness plan on paper and Lean, Long & Strong does a far better job at it than most other books that have attempted this same feat.