I never rate or review a book before I finish reading it. And I really do not understand all the Amazon reviews on cookbooks that are written like 5 minutes after the book is released (unless you had an advanced copy and in that case I am jealous). I would never give a book a five star rating just because the pictures look good (even though I do think Gather is the most beautiful cookbook I own so far), or because I like the author. That is why I didn’t write a review of Gather or Beyond Bacon. Both these books are amazing, pictures are gorgeous, recipe ideas are awesome, but I didn’t cook from them enough to be able to honestly say: THIS BOOK IS OUTSTANDING. As a designer myself I appreciate when the book is a visual orgasm (Bill’s photos actually are), as a lame photographer I love when pictures are beautiful (that is why PaleoOMG cookbook doesn’t seem like the most beautiful to me), and as a woman who must cook to survive I appreciate recipes that are easy to make and taste good, so I don’t have to spend hours in the kitchen and I don’t need to worry about my boyfriend liking the result. Maybe you think “just give it 5 stars, what’s the big deal?” but that is just a way I am.
I was aware of The Paleo Coach way before I jumped on the EPLifeFit train. Amazon was offering this book to me all the time, as a result of me purchasing other paleo books and cookbooks. I had no idea who Jason Seib was, I was thinking that this book will be just about “all that Crossfit thing,” written by someone who incidentally happens to eat paleo. I am a fan of crossfit to the point when I LOVE WATCHING IT. I love watching The Games, reading about the athletes, but I don’t have any serious intentions to go to the box and smash a medicine ball against the wall until my hands fall off. It is like being a hockey fan, right? You like watching and “being a fan,” but just the image of you actually PARTICIPATING in a play is more than hilarious. For that reason I never really was interested in purchasing the book, simply because I was too busy (= lazy) to research what is it really about.
In my previous post you can read a little not-so-interesting-story about how I started with the whole EPLifeFit thing. It’s pretty clear now to me who Jason Seib is and what his book is about. I wanted to read it the same day I started listening to the podcast Jason and Sarah record together. I canceled a few pre-orders of some paleo cookbooks I had on Amazon so I can keep my money save for the better stuff (aka The Paleo Coach). I was sure I will purchase the book from BookDepository (faster shipping to me, because it’s in UK, and free shipping) next month (and I still will do that), but I could not wait so I bought a Kindle version from Amazon a week ago, when I was on a train to my home town, Kindle in my hands, finding out that I have no desire to read anything else than The Paleo Coach. One click, instant download, ready to read.
I know I always say that It Starts With Food is my most favorite book about paleo/primal nutrition (which is weird because I love pictures and except a few sketches and 2 pages of food photos, ISWF has none), but today I have to say that The Paleo Coach is on the same level (okay, maaaaybe a tiny bit higher). No non-fiction book ever made me cry. (Primal Connections ALMOST made me cry, and fiction books always make me cry). But that is not why I put this book as number one in my ratings. WHY it made me cry is the actual reason.
The book itself is divided in three parts – THINK, EAT and MOVE. The EAT and MOVE part are awesome. I am pretty confident in what to eat (animals and plants), when to eat (basically when I am hungry, currently two times a day), where to eat (AT THE DAMN TABLE!!!) and I think I have my MOVE part dialed too. I recently started following the EPLifeFit workouts, before that I did a bit of lifting, bit of HIIT, but also a lot of cardio that I HATED and I don’t do anymore, reading the MOVE part made me even more sure that I am doing the right thing now. What really hit the nail on the head for me was the very first part, the THINK. In this part, The Paleo Coach means the same to me in paleo sphere what Easyway by Allen Carr means to me in smoking area. That book will always be the only thing I will recommend people who wanna quit smoking, and many many times I mentioned it on my blog, Facebook or real life when discussing smoking. The info inside is stuff I already knew before reading it, but the way it was written was like a giant WAKE-UP slap in the face for me. The same happened in case of The Paleo Coach. I felt like the book is speaking directly to ME! Jason shares a few personal stories of his clients throughout the book and except the age range of those people, I could totally relate to some. Angela’s story made me tear up, really.
The psychology “talk” in the THINK part is so perfectly served, Jason’s writting style is as brilliant as his talking style (on podcasts), and you just must instantly love him as a person, because no jackass would be able to put together something this amazing. The book is so personal in a weird way, which is silly to say, because you cannot apply the same rules and principles to every reader, but I kinda compare it to Paulo Coelho books (okay, I am perfectly aware that you CANNOT COMPARE THESE TWO, they are apples and oranges!!!) – I love Paulo Coelho and his message even though I am like the most stubborn atheist ever, I still take something from his books that touches me deeply. The THINK part of The Paleo Coach made me THINK, rethink and realize many things. Paleo books on the market are full of wonderful information, but in The Paleo Coach everything clicks together so perfectly, nutrition and fitness and all the psychology and no unnecessary science (I am not saying that science is useless, but I bought the book for something else than that, science can be found somewhere else and honestly is quite “cold” and not personal). In fact, you are not gonna cry and nod over a description of insulin resistance, but the topic of emotional eating makes you weep. The book is full of amazing and sometimes hilarious analogies, my favorite being the one from Chapter 13, talking about why personal care is such a natural thing for people to do, but they seem to fail with diet – “You have never tried to take a shower and failed. The information most widely available regarding teeth-brushing is not dead wrong. And nobody ever looked in the mirror with tear-filled eyes because she was too dirty and didn’t know how to get clean.” The whole book is filled with quotes I would tattoo permanently on my body in a heartbeat (I am not gonna though…), some of them really scream my name (Chapter 4, Scale Addiction part – TOTALLY GUILTY THERE!!!), some of them I really wanna print out and put on my notice board over my desk to see them and keep reminding myself of the important stuff every day.
It actually took me only something over 5 hours to finish reading the book (on a train) and I will for sure read it again at least one more time, when I buy a hard copy of it. This book is so precious to me that I do need to own a real paper copy of that to carry around with me, that is how I love the content. The only other books I own both Kindle versions and hardcover versions are It Starts With Food by Hartwigs and Primal Connection by Mark Sisson. If I was about to introduce paleo/primal lifestyle to anyone through a book, I would have to grab these two along with The Paleo Coach. I actually wanna do it, I wanna give copies of these to my family members, but unfortunately, nobody in my family can read in English (boo!), so I am still patiently waiting for these gems to be requested and translated by some publisher in my country, so I can save my family’s health the same way as I saved mine :D
The Paleo Coach is a powerful tool for everyone who is new to this lifestyle, but also to “paleo veterans” who welcome a little bit more personal approach as an addition to the sciency stuff you can find in other books. The magic of it is that it is not written as a wikipedia post, but you can tell that the author put his heart and soul (and probably even sweat and tears) in every single paragraph, making sure to make the whole book easy to follow, information easy to absorb and the whole paleo lifestyle easy to apply and actually be excited about every single step you take on the way. Or at least I am going to enjoy every step with a huuuuuuge excitement, because after reading I feel like a brand new person that JUST discovered paleo for the first time, so I am gonna act like that. Started with Whole30 challenge to reset myself physically, because mentally, I am definitely in a right place, thanks to The Paleo Coach.
You can buy The Paleo Coach on Amazon, both Kindle and regular version, also if you are from Europe (like myself), you can purchase it through Book Depository. Now I am going to Amazon and give this thing a well deserved FIVE STARS!
(BTW I googled the picture on top of this post)