Back in early September 2012, I was in a pretty bad place.
I had gained about 20+ pounds, I had DNF’d an Ironman (that I DNT’d (didn’t train) for, thus, the DNF), and even though my job was (is) pretty active, I wasn’t doing much in the way of exercise.
My clothes were getting tighter, my mid-section was growing, and basically, I was wondering how in the heck I was going to get back into Ironman shape for Ironman Lake Placid (only 27 days away) – which I hadn’t told anyone I signed up for.
Because I wasn’t sure I was going to do it.
I signed up for the gym (which is an hour away. Yes, it is the closest one) and started listening to podcasts. I stumbled across the Angriest Trainer Podcast – this is when I “met” Vinnie Tortorich and Anna Vocino. I laughed my butt off and immediately downloaded all the previous episodes and had a Vinnie marathon.
His message? Pretty simple. Cut the crap.
More specifically, cut out the sugar, cut out the grains. Move your body. You will lose weight.
He wasn’t trying to sell me a magic pill or miracle cream. He basically was saying, don’t eat crap, do the work, you will lose weight.
I quietly followed his advice, and literally, my life changed for the better. I dropped 3 pounds in 2 weeks SORT of following the No Sugar No Grains (NSNG) protocol. That means I wasn’t really following it but I ate less sugars and grains. I talked about it for the first time HERE on the blog, it was kind of my “coming out”.
I sent Vinnie an email asking about how you fuel for endurance things, like say, an Ironman, eating this way. I honestly was not expecting a response. Within a few hours, I was on the phone with him. I couldn’t believe that this guy took time out of his busy schedule to talk to me.
After that, I went all in on NSNG, 15 pounds were gone in a little over a month. I am where I want to be now – 35 pounds down since first downloading his podcast in September.
All this introduction is here because I want to be up front – I am a huge Vinnie fan and supporter who has been anxiously awaiting the release of this book. I was not disappointed.
SO as I said above, I am a listener to the podcast, so I had an idea what the book would be about. It completely exceeded my expectations – I started reading it on a 4 hour trainer ride, got off the trainer, showered (I have limits), and finished the book that night.
What I love about this book most of all? It is written in Vinnie’s voice. I can almost hear him telling these stories.
Vinnie has been a personal trainer in Hollywood for, well, pretty much since there were personal trainers in Hollywood. He has seen some crazy stuff for sure. Vinnie shares his diet and fitness advice, which is:
Avoid sugars and grains. Exercise. And live life to the fullest.
OK there is way more to it than that, but you really need to buy the book to get the details.
To me the real meat of the book is all the stuff mixed in with the advice. He shares how he became who he is, including his beginnings in fitness, life as a trainer in Hollywood, and his successes and failures in endurance sports. The detailed story of his courageous fight with cancer brought me to tears more than once.
The book ends with Vinnie’s account of racing Furnace Creek 508 – it was one of the most gripping race reports I have read. I even knew how it ended before I started reading and I was on the edge of my seat.
Thanks for reading!