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The First 20 Minutes Audiobook

The First 20 Minutes: Surprising Science Reveals How We Can Exercise Better, Train Smarter, Live Longer

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Publisher's Summary

Every Wednesday, Gretchen Reynolds singlehandedly influences how millions of Americans work out. In her Phys Ed column for The New York Times, she debunks myths, spurs conversation, and creates arguments among her readers by questioning widely held beliefs about exercise.

Expanding upon her popular columns, Reynolds tackles the questions we all have and (sometimes) ask about exercise. Consulting experts in physiology, biology, psychology, neurology, and sports, she uncovers how often we should exercise, how long workouts should be, how to avoid injury, and how to find the right form, routine, and equipment for our goals.

She also reveals some surprising answers, like:

  • 20 minutes of cardio at a time is enough to obtain maximum health benefits. (And in some cases, just six minutes is all you need.)*
  • Stretching before a workout is counterproductive. (It's better to just start easy, i.e., walk before you run.)
  • Core strength is nice but not necessary. (A six-pack looks great but actually has little bearing on performance.)
  • Walking improves your memory; housecleaning improves your mood. (The brain is like a muscle - it likes to exercise.)
  • Chocolate milk is better than Gatorade for recovery. (Providing the best sports nutrition is often the simplest.)
  • Drawing on scientific expertise as well as her own athletic experiences, Gretchen Reynolds will help you find the right workout for your body, age, fitness and goals. Whether your desire is to be fit for the rest of your life, to look great in a smaller dress size, or to run your third marathon in Boston, The First 20 Minutes will make your workouts work for you.

    ©2012 Gretchen Reynolds (P)2012 Gildan Media, LLC

    What the Critics Say

    "[This audiobook] delivers answers to many perennial training questions [and] does a great job of myth-busting some well-established beliefs. It's a great guide for the mindful athlete who wants to gain all the benefits of physical training while minimizing downtime from injury or over-training." (Danny Dreyer, Founder of Chi Running and co-author of Chi Running, Chi Walking, and Chi Marathon)

    "There has never been a better time in history to grow stronger, faster, and smarter; there has never been a more helpful book than Gretchen Reynolds's The First 20 Minutes. Smart, clear, and beautifully useful, this is the new fitness Bible for the modern age." (Dan Coyle, author of The Talent Code and Lance Armstrong's War)

    "The First 20 Minutes is packed with interesting tips and insights. Pickle juice for cramps, who would have ever thought! Gretchen Reynolds once again delivers a winner." (Dean Karnazes, uber athlete and New York Times best-selling author of UltraMarathon Man)

    What Members Say

    Average Customer Rating

    3.8 (137 )
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    3.8 (110 )
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    3.5 (115 )
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    Performance
    Sort by:
    •  
      david 05-06-15
      david 05-06-15
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      3
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      "I Have Now Become a Life-long Mover!"

      Even partway through this book, I was totally convinced! Every cell and function in my body is enhanced by being a person who stands and moves much more than I sit. I have now become a life-long mover.

      0 of 0 people found this review helpful
    •  
      Mr Green 04-16-15
      Mr Green 04-16-15 Member Since 2014
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      "Succinct and up-to-date!"

      A very thorough overview of some of the latest research on activity and nutrition. A must read for everyone looking to better their health!

      0 of 0 people found this review helpful
    •  
      Saad H 03-22-15
      Saad H 03-22-15 Member Since 2015
      HELPFUL VOTES
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      "Plenty of Healthy Useful Facts"
      Would you consider the audio edition of The First 20 Minutes to be better than the print version?

      I think so. The audiobook didn't mentioned data from charts, at least I don't recall such, so I think this is the ideal case when audiobook can replace prints.


      Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

      No


      Any additional comments?

      The best to way to describe the book is it's a list of facts & myth-busting supported by various researches with no bias from the author.

      0 of 0 people found this review helpful
    •  
      Youcandoit 02-27-15
      Youcandoit 02-27-15 Member Since 2014
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      "A sleeper"

      Really a top well researched book! I picked it up as a side thought. The title kind of short changes the value presented in this book. A majority of this book are things I did not know. Plenty of myths dispelled, and exercise habits tweaked. Thank you for taking the time to write this book!

      0 of 0 people found this review helpful
    •  
      Lucas Rockwood Koh Samui, Thailand 08-18-14
      Lucas Rockwood Koh Samui, Thailand 08-18-14 Member Since 2016
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      "50/50 Great & Not Great"
      Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

      Some really fascinating stuff in here unfortunately mixed with some outdated misinformation. For example, really interesting stuff on lactic acid myth, some less interesting research about more reps with less weight = more strength. With stats, you can find stats to prove so many things, it's the author/editor interpretation that is really important, and some things here were interpreted poorly. Another example, fructose vs. sucrose for athletes was really interesting/unique and interesting. Flexibility as mostly genetic was just conjecture (no research presented) and just not accurate.

      Certainly worth a read, but I hope there is an updated edition in the future.

      Technically, the narration is odd, the narrator attempts to impersonate accents, it's really peculiar.


      0 of 0 people found this review helpful
    •  
      christopher San Jose, CA, United States 08-31-12
      christopher San Jose, CA, United States 08-31-12

      i drive a truck on the night shift. i love hearing interesting stories, i need some action to keep me awake :)

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      "good information"
      Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

      yes, it is full of reasonable information that reinforces the notion of living healthy.


      Would you be willing to try another book from Gretchen Reynolds? Why or why not?

      sure


      What aspect of Karen Saltus’s performance would you have changed?

      the performance was fine


      Was The First 20 Minutes worth the listening time?

      yes


      0 of 0 people found this review helpful
    •  
      Robert S. 08-13-12
      Robert S. 08-13-12 Member Since 2005
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      "Great Overall Review of Current Exercise Science"

      This book is a great review of the current science of exercise, diet and health.

      0 of 0 people found this review helpful
    •  
      Wally s 07-16-12
      Wally s 07-16-12 Member Since 2016

      Wally

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      "good info"

      This was good information. However, my emphasis in fitness is on powerlifting and it is tilted toward those who are into aerobic fitness, and especially running. This meant that, except for advice on HIIT/tabata for weight loss, it wasn't as much worth to me as it might be for some others.

      0 of 0 people found this review helpful
    •  
      Boston Reader 134 09-30-12
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      "Narrator made this book impossible to listen to"
      Would you try another book from Gretchen Reynolds and/or Karen Saltus?

      Maybe Ms. Reynolds, but definitely not Ms. Saltus


      What was the most interesting aspect of this story? The least interesting?

      I can't really judge the content, because the narration was unbearable


      How did the narrator detract from the book?

      She sounds detatched, overly cheerful, and condescending all at once. From the way she reads, including a slow pace and strange emphasis, I get the impression she doesn't fully understand what she is reading, and/or assumes the listener will not. Ugh!


      What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

      Disappointment that such a poor narrator was chosen.


      Any additional comments?

      If this title interests you, get it in print.

      0 of 1 people found this review helpful
    •  
      Lori 09-04-12
      Lori 09-04-12
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      "Not sure of her sources."
      Would you try another book from Gretchen Reynolds and/or Karen Saltus?

      I was not impressed the amount of documentation of the book. I do not know what Ms. Reynolds qualifications are. She is obviously a proponent of High Intensity Training.


      What didn’t you like about Karen Saltus’s performance?

      I was simply not a fan of Ms Saltus's voice quality and she is obviously not medically trained. There were several words that we not pronounced with emphasis on the right syllables.


      0 of 1 people found this review helpful

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