Book Review: Thinner Leaner Stronger by Michael Matthews

I'm a big fan of books that avoid the fad-rubbish. I don't want to hear about the latest 7-day detox or the diet that only lasts 2 days. None of that is healthy or sustainable so why even waste time (and money) reading about them? What I am a big fan of however, are books like the one written by Michael Matthews that debunk the myths , tell you straight and give you practical tips! 

When I tell people I lift weights, they often think one of two things:
1)Awww..She's 5ft 2 and a size 10, she can't be very strong, she must just use little 5lb dumbbells. Very feminine. 

2) Ewww.. she uses heavy barbells! She'll look like the 'She Hulk' in a few months. Doesn't she know that she'll get all big 'n' bulky?! 

Of course, the people that think either of these two things are just plain wrong and misguided. Unfortunately so many women shun lifting weights because they think they'll turn into the grunting, hefty men in the weight room (you won't, you don't have the required testosterone!I think next time I'll just pass my Kindle over to them to save my lengthy explanations as this book will explain the science behind why it's possible to still look like a woman, but lift like a man, whilst boosting your metabolism to assist with fat loss (notice I didn't say weight loss?). 

The bottom line of why you should lift weights to lose weight: if you only ever rely on cutting calories and cardio to lose weight, eventually you'll be eating so few calories that you won't be able get all the nutrients you need (or be able to get away with occasional treats!), or you'll have to run endless miles a day and spend multiple hours in the gym each day to maintain (who has the the time for that, really?) Women that lift weights do not spend hours and hours a day working out, just 45-60 mins will do, they can eat an ample amount of food as their extra muscle burns fat for them, and they have an easier time of maintaining and oh, and they have fantastic flab-free bodies! By all means, keep cardio in your routine as it's great for the heart and lungs and can be very fun, but please, please, please lift heavy things (after researching what to do it correctly and safely). You won't regret it!

Mike - who I must add, certainly looks like someone who knows his stuff, if you get what I mean ;) *ahem*.. provides exercise plans and nutrition guidance alongside an incredibly useful chapter on supplements. In the supplements chapter he points out which ones are a total waste of money and which ones you will likely benefit from. If you're confused about protein shakes and multivitamins and all the bright coloured bottles in your local health store, then this is a must read!

My other favourite chapter is one of perfecting your form for some of the major exercises, such as dead-lifts  squats and bench presses. If you're new to weight lifting, (or you've been doing in ages and either see no progress or repetitively injure yourself) then the tips and pictures in this chapter will help a great deal. 

From an academic point of view (I can't help it, studying for my masters degree consumes me!) I also like that he's included references to back up the scientific explanations and research findings, rather than merely writing about them like many magazine authors do.  

My advice: If you need some info on why to you should lift, how to perfect your form, which supplements (if any) to take, and what to eat then read this book!

Download for your Kindle/iPad/iPhone here:


  1. Thanks so much for the book review Karen! I'm really glad you liked the book.

    Shoot me an email anytime if you have any questions and I'll be happy to help!


  2. Hi - I'm your newest follower from the Aloha Friday hop! Love your blog!


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