One of my ongoing goals, year after year after year, is always to read more.
I loved reading as a child and teenager, and would hole myself up in my room for hours on end.
I still love reading just as much now as I did then, but as a mom to two young children, it is just more challenging to carve out the time to do so.
Because at the end of the day, sometimes all I want to do is crash with nothing more than the remote, some bad reality tv, and a big glass of iced water.
The thought of reading sentences, and fully comprehending them, is sometimes too much to bear.
But I always aim to do better.
And with that, on January 4th, I have already read my first book for the year. Notable in and of itself, but even more so because it has been sitting on my bookshelf, unread, for a good two years.
One down, many many many many more to go.
If you are a fan of The Biggest Loser, Ali Vincent is no stranger to you. If you’re not, she was the first woman to win The Biggest Loser (2008). And she looks amazing.
Believe It, Be It was a quick and easy read, giving some behind-the-scenes peeks into the show, discussing her strategy, and how her weight gain all started. Although it largely is about the story of her weight loss journey, there are motivational bits throughout that can help kick start you on any journey. Ali is honest and candid as she relays her own story. Her trainers, particularly Jillian, are big advocates of getting to the root of the weight gain, because if you don’t figure out the cause of why it all happened, you might not be able to prevent it from happening again.
“Don’t go on just wanting something. Start consciously planning where you want to be.”
For the most part, the story flows easily enough from start to finish. My only complaint is that on nearly every page, there is a little box with a paragraph, a takeaway, if you will. Its placement is random, breaking up the story, and a lot of the time, doesn’t have a specific connection to what is on the page. The tips and extra insights are great, it’s the placement that I question. It interrupts that flow of reading from one page to the next … a lot. The reader would be better served if all those bits of information and inspiration were in a separate, stand-alone section.
“So many women let extra weight hold them back from feeling good about themselves. The number one culprit I see in that equation is the lack of time women allow themselves to get healthy and stay healthy. When did it become okay to give your time to everyone but yourself? Women tend to nurture on so many different levels for so many people that they often forget to take care of themselves. It’s so important to check in with yourself, no matter how busy you are – to ask yourself what you need in order to live a happy life. Finding the time to exercise can be a challenge, but you can start with small steps – finding ways to incorporate more activity into your day.”
My favorite section of the book was the end, believe it or not. Chapter 10 is full of inspirational pick-me-ups and rah-rah you-can-do-its. But not in an annoying cheerleader way. More so in a way that you close the book and get moving.
And that is never a bad thing.
“As I began this book, so I end it. What I know to be true is that you just have to start putting one foot in front of the other, making an effort to get healthy every day. Over time you’ll figure out what motivates you, and you’ll find reasons for putting in the hard work required to make changes in your life. It’s not always easy to stick with it, but the more you see results, the more clarity you’ll start to gain. To think about your life is to create it. You have to take ownership of where you are right now and know where you want to go before you can get there. Keep collecting evidence of your success. You can believe it, and you can be it. Start right now.”
That’s actually one season of the biggest loser that I never watched but it sounds like I would have actually liked Ali! This is definitely the perfect book to start the new year off with.
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