New York Times best-selling author and king of "immersion journalism" A.J. Jacobs tackles his most challenging experiment yet: a yearlong mission to radically improve every element of his body and mind - from his brain to his fingertips to his abs.
Having lifted his spirit in The Year of Living Biblically and sharpened his mind in The Know-It-All, A. J. Jacobs had one feat left in the self-improvement trinity: to become the healthiest man in the world. He doesn't just want to lose a couple of pounds, or finish a triathlon, or lower his cholesterol.
First, he had to tackle a complicated web of diet and exercise advice, most which is nonsensical, unproven, and contradictory. Second, he had to consult a team of medical advisers. And finally, he had to subject himself, over the course of two years, to a grueling regimen of exercises, a range of diets and nutritional plans, and a brutal array of techniques and practices to improve everything from his hearing to his sleep - all the while testing the patience of his wife.
This latest work bursts with hilarity and warmth, all the while testing our culture's assumptions and obsessions with what makes good health and allowing the listener to reflect on his or her own health, body, and eventual mortality.
©2012 A. J. Jacobs (P)2012 Simon & Schuster, Inc.
“We can become healthier by learning from AJ's discomfort in this very funny book. He moves us from theory to practice by dragging his body through all the longevity practices. (Dr. Mehmet Oz)
"Can one man go from a 'python that ate agoat' physique to perfect specimen? From Roman soldier workouts to Areca palm plants, fromthe sublime to the absurd, AJ has tried it all. I laughed my ass off the wholeway and learned a ton ... including about my ass." (Timothy Ferriss, author of The 4-Hour Workweek)
"Who wouldn't want to be fitter, happier, more productive? In this riotous, madcap book, AJ Jacobs sets himself an ambitious goal: to become the person we all wish we could be. It's vintage AJ. Do your future self a favor and read this book." (Joshua Foer, author of Moonwalking with Einstein)
I enjoyed Living Biblical and The Know It All slightly more however this is another great book from A. J. Jacobs. His unique blend of over the top extreme-ism and seemingly earnest efforts to meet his goals (in this case to be the "healthiest man alive") provide a seemingly never ending source of entertainment. I find most of the best of the humor comes from self-deprecation (his wife in particular gets the best one-liners) and his description of people/characters around him. There is also some sharing of personal family information that adds a humanizing element to what could be a somewhat over the top affair.
The author is a great narrator, he animates without being too animated. He added a lot of value by narrating himself. I do wish that I could get a physical copy of some of the appendixes he shares at the end, just reading them isn't really that helpful. It comes with the territory I guess.
A.J. if you read this don't just forget about it because I am being nice, I will gladly say something mean about you/your voice (or anything else you want me to) if you will mention me in your next book! Pretty please?!
loves non-fiction, memoir and biography or the classics.
I love this book and Jacobs' narration. However, the beginning of many words is cut off. Is it him or the recorder or my car stereo? Instead of "mystery" it might sound like "istory". This was about 1/10th of the words. Otherwise, fabulous book and narration.
A. J. Jacobs spent two years trying out virtually every health fad. Some were offbeat while others made sense. I could almost see him getting healthier as the months clicked by. He also is the narrator and an engaging one at that. Highly recommended.
I like to try new things with moderation. I enjoy audible in the car and at home before going to sleep. I want emotions and thinking.
me gusto y vuelvo a escuchar partes cada tanto. es gracioso y es fácil identificarse con el personaje. ojalá tuviera un mejor final pero creo también eso es algo que todos compartimos con el autor
I expected this book to be a guy who total immerses himself in the health and or fitness culture. What it was, was a guy trying to get into shape, at times he sought out expects or tried some crazy form of working out but basically, it was a book about a guy that walked on the treadmill and tried to eat right. Great premiss, terrible execution.
I would listen again because I love the humor of A.J. Jacobs and the way he checks out the literal interpretation of whatever he's writing about. Bless his wife.
I also listened to "The Year of Living Biblically" which is even funnier than this book. Jacobs can get into some real predicaments. And again, God bless his wife.
I laughed a lot while listening to this book -- it's great for traffic time.
I'm a fan of the author's antics -- his adventures delving into the validity of topics that we have often wondered about but not thinking too deeply on. I enjoyed his other books, "My Life as an Experiment" (practicing radical honesty and outsourcing errands and tasks to India, including reading bedtime stories to his kids) and "The Know-It-All" (reading the encyclopedia from A to Z). This book is still as entertaining as the others. Where it falls short is the book doesn't really go into the effects of the exercise and eating regiments he tries out. The problem with healthy eating and living is that it doesn't always materialize. However, it still left me feeling that the book was incomplete. So what become of drinking wine and coffee? Or cutting back sugar? Or extreme exercising? Or running without shoes? Or eating raw food? The author is feeling a little more energy. Is that it? It might have been more interesting if the author had more time with people following certain regiments (like caloric restriction or caveman diet) and see what their meals and lives are like.
It was a reasonably good listen. I like the whole concept of participatory journalism and, being susceptible to health and fitness fads myself, the core idea of the book was attractive. In the end, it was a little bit too light-weight and insubstantial for me. I know he was not attempting a truly "serious" book on the subject but it ended up feeling like not being one thing or another - not truly satirising the whole health and fitness obsession but not really fully committing to it either. I did like the descriptions of his grandfather and aunt.
I would be slow to recommend it because I did have to force myself to finish it.
I did not like the narrator's voice at all. Ironically it was not strong or punchy enough in delivering the material. I suspect I would have given a higher rating to the book if someone else had narrated it. I sometimes listen to audiobooks on a cheap docking station and his voice was barely intelligible.
His book is quite personal so I don't think there was much lacking with regard to insights into his personal life.
Wanted to like it more than I did ....
Jacobs is a relatable, anxious, narrator. He is honest about his life and his health status.
He is not consistent in his monthly reporting. I want to know how many pounds he weighed each month so I can hear how he is improving, etc. He does not try diets that are truly sensible - I'd love to hear how he did on a recommended and healthy diet rather than just a juice fast.
He's funny and willing to try things like accupuncture.
Yes, Jacobs is a very entertaining writer and his reading is just terrific. The information is good, because he is able to access people who are experts in the field that he is talking about.
There were many wonderful chapters, but the chapter on germs was one of my favorites.
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