Embrace the Suck: What I Learned at the Box About Hard Work, (Very) Sore Muscles, and Burpees Before Sunrise

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9780062257871: Embrace the Suck: What I Learned at the Box About Hard Work, (Very) Sore Muscles, and Burpees Before Sunrise

With irreverence, humor, and soul-touching candor, the former editor of Bicycling magazine explores the CrossFit phenomenon, the fitness revolution sweeping America, chronicling his experience "inside the box" and how he got into the best shape of his life.

Lifelong amateur athlete Stephen Madden decided to put himself to the test, physically and mentally, by immersing himself in the culture, diet, and psyche of CrossFit—the fast-growing but controversial fitness regime that's a stripped-down combination of high intensity aerobic activity, weightlifting, calisthenics, and gymnastics practiced by more than two million athletes worldwide. But what's crazier? The fact that such a grueling regimen—in which puking and muscle breakdowns during workouts are common—is so popular, or that people pay good money to do it?

In Embrace the Suck, Madden chronicles the year he devoted to mastering all of the basic Crossfit exercises like double unders, muscle ups and kipping pullups, and immersing himself in the Paleo diet that strips weight from its followers but leaves them fantasizing about loaves of bread. Throughout, he explores the culture of the sport, visiting gyms (boxes) around the country, becoming a CrossFit coach, and confronting some basic questions about himself, his past and athletic limitations—and why something so difficult and punishing can be at once beautiful, funny, and rewarding.

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From the Back Cover:

To be fit, or CrossFit?

Lifelong amateur athlete Stephen Madden decided to put himself to the test. He immersed himself in the culture, diet, and psyche of CrossFit—the fast-growing but controversial fitness regime that's a stripped-down combination of high-intensity aerobic activity, weightlifting, calisthenics, and gymnastics. Madden is just one of over two million athletes worldwide to do so. But what's crazier? The fact that such a grueling regimen—in which puking and muscle breakdowns during workouts are common—is so popular, or that people pay good money to do it?

In Embrace the Suck, the former editor-in-chief of Bicycling magazine explores with irreverence, humor, and soul-touching candor the fitness revolution sweeping America. Madden chronicles the year he devoted to trying to master all the basic CrossFit exercises, like double unders, muscle-ups, and kipping pullups, and immersing himself in the Paleo diet that strips weight from its followers but leaves them fantasizing about loaves of bread. Along the way, he explores the culture of the sport, his experience becoming a CrossFit coach, and some basic questions about himself, his past, and his athletic limitations—and why something so difficult and punishing can be at once beautiful, funny, and rewarding.

Whether you are a CrossFitter or a nascent athlete, you will come away from this book understanding the limitless potential of the human body and mind, and will learn what it takes to welcome and defeat any kind of suck.

About the Author:

Stephen Madden is the chief content strategist for the enthusiast publisher F+W edia. website Sports on Earth. He was the founding editor of Sports on Earth, Outdoor Explorer and Fitbie. Madden has held various staff positions at Sports Illustrated, Fortune, and Bicycling, where under his editorship the magazine won two National Magazine Awards. His writing has appeared in more than 25 publications and websites. He graduated from Cornell University. An avid Crossfitter, cyclist and swimmer, Madden lives in Chatham, NJ with his wife and three children.

 

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