Monday, January 18, 2010

Core Performance Women Book Review and Giveaway!

I was recently sent the book Core Performance Women, by Mark Verstegen and Pete Williams, who are the co-authors of several other Core Performance books. This one, specifically tailored for women, is hot off the presses and full of good information about eating right, putting yourself first and best of all, workouts.

What I liked about the book:
  • It promotes a "non-diet" philosophy with simple nutrition rules to give you more energy throughout the day;
  • It promotes strengthening your core to reduce your risk of injury, while building lean muscle.
  • There was a short summary at the end of each chapter.
What I didn't particularly like about the book:
  • It spent far too much time in each chapter telling you what they were going to do for you - my short attention span really just wanted them to get to the point. I get it, I get tell me what to do already!
What I LOVED about the book:
  • The last third of it was filled with photographs of stretching and recovery exercises, along with a lot of movement, strength and power exercises. know I had to show this!
Very clear pictures and instructions for each exercise are included.

As I've mentioned a time or two, I have a horrible memory and usually can't remember exactly how to do a certain exercise once I've left the gym. These detailed photographs not only show you what to do, they tell you where you should be feeling it, so you know if you are doing the exercise correctly.

Plus, at the very end of the book they put together a set of workouts based on whether you are doing a strength day, endurance day, or regeneration day, all according to what level you are at.
If I were doing workouts on my own (without my trainer), this is exactly what I would use to get the right variety in each day.

My recommendation? While I found myself skimming the beginning of the book, if you are looking for a detailed workout book, this one is worth purchasing just for the last third. As I was looking through the pictures I recognized a lot of what I've been doing with my trainer, and since I know how well these work with me, I think the authors are right on target with what they are showing to do.

I have a copy of Core Performance Women to give to one lucky enter, just leave me a comment telling me what exercise you dislike the most. For me, it's the dreaded burpee! Contest is open to U.S. residents only and will close at 10:00 pm on Thursday, January 21. I'll use to draw the winner who will be announced on Friday, January 22. Good luck!

FCC Disclaimer: I was given a copy of Core Performance Women to read by the publisher, who will also be fulfilling the giveaway.


  1. This looks like a very interesting book! I don't like doing lunges so please enter me in the book drawing.
    Have a great Monday!

  2. Hi Shelley
    The book looks great, thanks for the generous giveaway!

    I share your aversion to burpees - I know they are a necessary evil, but I find myself feeling uncoordinated, weak and frustrated *every* time I attempt them!

  3. I'm just starting strength training, so I don't have a least favorite, although I guess endless squats would qualify.

  4. I dislike lots of exercises, but have made progress in all but the pull-up. Bum shoulder doesn't help, so at this point, I've put that goal on indefinite hold. The book looks good-hope I win :)

  5. That looks like a great book! I would say the body weight leg matrix is my least favorite thing to do.

  6. I can only pick ONE exercise that I disklike the most? Gee, that's going to be tough. I mean, there are so many! LOL

    Can I just make it a tie?
    The winners of my least favorite exercises are squats and pushups. Mainly because I'm weak. If I were good at them they probably wouldn't be my least favorite! :)

    And why do they call those Burpees anyway?

  7. I'm with you on the burpees. Really anything that requires jumping is in the ugh list for me. Ask me to run 10 miles - no problem. Plyometrics and I want to run from the room.

  8. Great question; there are so many exercises I dislike it's hard to choose!

    I'll go with the pull-up, because despite years of trying to get to an unassisted one, I still can't do it. Grrr...

    And thanks for the helpful review!

  9. You are so thoughtful and giving; a large part of your charm. :)

    This one, I'll pass on. I don't "do" traditional exercises. :)

  10. I am definitely a visual learner as well - love the pics!

    While I know they do a lot - I hate planks!!

    Happy Monday Shelley!

  11. I don't like 'wall sits.' They seem simple, but they hurt, and ultimately are humiliating--as I slide to the floor in defeat...

  12. This book looks like a must have for me. Not only for my own reference but now that I'm close to being certified as a trainer it would be helpful for designing programs for clients.

    The exercise I hate is tri-dips. They work wonders on my triceps but they burn like crazy after a few sets.

  13. I'm not in the contest (is considering of moving to the US for all the give aways :) ) but the name Mark Verstegen is a Dutch name :lol:

    I have something like that of Matt Roberts which I use for my strength training. It's got pictures too so I can see what I have to do.

  14. That book would be wasted on me though I don't like and will not do burpees unless they come with a drink first. Then I'm capable of tons of burpees. Also don't want to do any exercises that are harmful to my knees. waaaah

  15. I really like most exercises. I have a hard time hold the downward facing dog in yoga. It just kills my wrists. Thanks for the giveaway!

  16. It looks like a great book, especially the pictures. My most dreaded exercise is the dreaded lunge.

  17. Hey Shelley!
    I'm a newcomer (since the first of the year) and am inspired and in awe of your journey...congrats! With that said, I desperately need this book to help me kick start my workout routine. I really like to workout (I know, you don't hear that too often), but I have just gotten out of the habit in the past few months. This book sounds like an excellent tool to help me restructure and recommit. Thanks for the great giveaway!

  18. Looks like a great book - it would be so nice to have the easy reference for proper form!

    My most dreaded exercise is the "pulse" - for any masochists out there, here is how to do it. Start seated on the floor w/knees to chest and hands locked under knees - bring feet up off the floor until legs are vertical (body forms a very narrow V shape) - release hands and keeping back and legs straight, lower them towards the floor (body forms a very wide "V" shape, almost parallel to the floor) - keeping back and legs straight, bring them back up (return to very narrow V shape) - repeat for 3 sets of 15 reps.

  19. I love/hate jumping jacks. Somedays I absolutely HATE them, other days I like them. I think it's all in the number of reps.

  20. Yikes, I have to pick one?? There are so, so many! I'd have to say it would be squats. My legs shaking and feeling like I'm gonna pass out is not a fun feeling at all!

  21. My least favorite exercise is running/jogging because I also don’t like the jiggles. I know that running is one of the easiest high-calorie burning exercises out there, so am hoping that it comes easier once I’ve lost a little more weight. Right now it’s just painful.

  22. I hate tricep dips, but need them for my flabby triceps. :)

  23. Anything requiring me to get on the floor. Too hard to get back up!

  24. Everything!! lol.

    Lunges and squats for sure.

  25. Hi Shelly, The book looks gret. I am all about core!! I would have to say my least favorite would be the box up, I'm trying tho. I can do step ups but for some reason box up are REALLY hard for me. Any suggestions since I see you can do it. Congratulations!! :)

  26. Book looks great you love to have it.
    I hate doing sit-up's.

    Thanks for the chance to get it.

  27. I hate LUNGES!!!

    PS: I don't live in the US right now, but I have a US postal address - is that okay?


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