Recommended Reading


The Engine 2 Diet by Rip Esselstyn

Wellness Central, 02/01/09

Professional athlete-turned-firefighter Rip Esselstyn is used to responding to emergencies. So, when he learned that some of his fellow Engine 2 firefighters in Austin, TX, were in dire physical condition-several had dangerously high cholesterol levels (the highest was 344!)-he sprang into action and created a life-saving plan for the firehouse.

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Light on Life by B.K.S. Iyenger

Rodale, 08/25/05

If this book is to lay any claim to authenticity, it must make one point clear above all others. It is this: By persistent and sustained practice, anyone and everyone can make the yoga journey and reach the goal of illumination and freedom. Krishna, Buddha, and Jesus lie in the hearts of all. They are not film stars, mere idols of adulation. They are great inspirational figures whose example is there to be followed. They act as our role models today. Just as they reached Self- Realization, so may we. – B.K.S. Iyenger

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Saltwater Buddha by Jamai Yogis

Wisdom Publications, 05/01/09

A journalist, photographer, surfer and Zen Master, Yogis began the life of a roving seeker his junior year of high school, when he ran away from his Sacramento, Calif. home to learn how to surf in Hawaii. His subsequent travels include a handful of prime surfing spots, but Yogis’s more arresting journey is spiritual, taking him to monasteries in France and Berkley, Calif., and deep into the living tradition of Zen Buddhism. Even land lovers will find Yogis’s lessons resonant and entertaining, but surfers will find this a quick, surprisingly deep tribute to the quest for surf and serenity.

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Kook by Peter Heller

Free Press, 07/13/10

Journalist Heller’s gripping memoir starts off as a disappointing middle-aged man’s lament about the lack of love and meaning in his life. He gets a phone call from an old friend in California who wants Heller to come out so they can take surfing lessons together. Reluctant at first to leave Denver and his girlfriend, Kim, he follows the call to this new adventure. At Huntington Beach, Heller violates every rule of surfing etiquette, and other surfers vilify him as a kook, a beginning surfer. Initially, Heller is embarrassed, but he soon becomes so consumed by surfing that he brings Kim to California with him so that she can take lessons.By the end of this powerful memoir, Heller has learned that surfing is not simply about staying up on your board; it’s about love.

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What I Eat by Peter Menzel

Material World, 08/10/10

A stunning photographic collection featuring portraits of 80 people from 30 countries and the food they eat in one day. In this fascinating study of people and their diets, 80 profiles are organized by the total number of calories each person puts away in a day. These compulsively readable personal stories also include demographic particulars, including age, activity level, height, and weight. This compelling blend of photography and investigative reportage expands our understanding of the complex relationships among individuals, culture, and food.

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Outliers by Malcolm Gladwell

Little, Brown & Co, 11/18/08

Malcolm Gladwell poses a provocative question in Outliers: why do some people succeed, living remarkably productive and impactful lives, while so many more never reach their potential? Challenging our cherished belief of the “self-made man,” he makes the democratic assertion that superstars don’t arise out of nowhere, propelled by genius and talent. Examining the lives of outliers from Mozart to Bill Gates, he builds a convincing case for how successful people rise on a tide of advantages, “some deserved, some not, some earned, some just plain lucky.”

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The Book of Surfing by Michael Fordham

Bantam Press, 06/09/08

Everything you need to know about waves: classic surf trips from California to Cornwall, iconic surf movies and legendary images, profiles of surfing greats including Miki Dora, Nat Young, and Kelly Slater, practical advice—from becoming a greener surfer to travel essentials– and stories of how surfing conquered the world!

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The Lost Writings of Jim Morrison

Vintage, 12/17/89

Compiled from the literary estate of the singer who brought a wildly lyrical poetry of the damned to the world of rock ‘n’ roll. Includes unpublished poems, drawings, photos, and a candid self-interview.

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Killing Pablo by Mark Bowden

Atlantic Monthly Press, 04/25/01

Readers of Black Hawk Down know Mark Bowden can tell an exciting story about as well as any writer at work today. Killing Pablo is further proof. It describes the rise and fall of Pablo Escobar, a notorious Colombian drug lord who became one of the narcotic trade’s first billionaires. Pablo–Bowden refers to him by his first name throughout the book–started out as a petty thief and wound up running a massive smuggling empire. The bulk of Killing Pablo describes what happened when the U.S. government put its resources behind the hunt for Pablo.

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Spent by Dr. Frank Lipman

Fireside, 12/30/08

Americans seem to be suffering an epidemic of chronic fatigue. Lipman—founder and director of New York’s Eleven Eleven Wellness Center, whose patients include Kyra Sedgwick and David Letterman—here presents a six-week program to detoxify, change eating habits, work daily exercise into one’s schedule, and support those who are trying to clean up our environments.

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Catch a Fire by Timothy White

Holt, 09/15/98

Bob Marley, reggae superstar and pop culture icon, left an indelible mark on modern music. Catch a Fire: The Life of Bob Marley delves deep into the life of the lionized leader of a musical, spiritual, and political explosion that still reverberates more than a decade after his death. Almost nothing pertaining to the life of Bob Marley is left out; the origins of Rastafarianism (the Ethiopian religion that was the keystone of his life), the roots of the reggae sound, the Jamaican political and social debacle that informed his lyrics–this is a comprehensive account of the life of the artist and the times that produced him.

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Clean by Alejandro Junger

HarperOne, 05/12/09

Clean is an M.D.’s program designed to be easily incorporated into our busy schedule while providing all the practical tools necessary to support and rejuvenate our bodies. The effect is transformative: nagging health problems will suddenly disappear, extra weight will drop away, and for the first time in our lives we will experience what it truly means to feel healthy.

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Evolution of a Cro-Magnon by John Joseph

Punkhouse, 12/23/07
In his new autobiography, NY Hardcore Punk legend John Bloodclot Joseph recounts his hard times and spiritual redemption. A traumatic childhood in foster homes was just the beginning of John’s evolution. Before fronting one of the most important bands in the underground punk scene, the Cro-Mags, John faced homelessness, addiction, betrayal and insanity. Still, even his success couldn’t save him from a relapse that set him back to square one – rock bottom. The book is a raw and unapologetic autobiography. Consider yourself warned.

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Tao of Jeet Kune Do by Bruce Lee

Ohara, 10/01/75

To watch Bruce Lee on film is an amazing experience. Those who have read Tao of Jeet Kune Do, however, know that Lee’s prose can also be exhilarating. This praiseworthy and enduring bestseller (mainly written over six months when Lee was bedridden with back problems) compiles philisophical aphorisms, explanations on technique, and sketches by the master himself.

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The Kind Diet by Alicia Silverstone

Rodale, 10/13/09

In The Kind Diet, actress, activist, and committed conservationist Alicia Silverstone shares the insights that encouraged her to swear off meat and dairy forever, and outlines the spectacular benefits of adopting a plant-based diet, from effortless weight loss to clear skin, off-the-chart energy, and smooth digestion. She explains how meat, fish, milk, and cheese—the very foods we’ve been taught to regard as the cornerstone of good nutrition—are actually the culprits behind escalating rates of disease and the cause of dire, potentially permanent damage to our ecology.

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My Life In And Out Of The Rough by John Daly

It Books, 05/08/06

Ever since his astonishing victory in the 1991 PGA Championship, John Daly has enthralled fans with his big drives and even bigger personality. Usually seen with a cigarette dangling from his lip, Long John is the unchained, unpredictable, unapologetic bad boy of professional golf. My Life In and Out of the Rough is the thrillingly—and sometimes shockingly—candid memoir of a larger-than-life athlete battling assorted addictions (alcohol, gambling, chocolate, sex), his weight, and divorce lawyers (having been married four times).

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In Search Of Captain Zero by Allen Weisbecker

Tarcher, 03/15/01

Weisbecker’s book, a sort of gonzo detective story blended with travelogue and peppered with hang-10 jargon, does many things, all of them very well indeed. It offers up a vision of innocent times brought to ruin by war and drugs; it recounts his search for his lost friend, whose life had gone from bad to worse far away from home. Full of regret and exhilaration, Weisbecker’s memoir is a fine chronicle of a dream gone sour and a friendship redeemed. –Gregory McNamee

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Kitchen Confidential by Anthony Bourdain

Ecco, 05/08/01

Most diners believe that their sublime sliver of seared foie gras, topped with an ethereal buckwheat blini and a drizzle of piquant huckleberry sauce, was created by a culinary artistof the highest order, a sensitive, highly refined executive chef. The truth is more brutal. More likely, writes Anthony Bourdain in Kitchen Confidential, that elegant three-star concoction is the collaborative effort of a team of “wacked-out moral degenerates, dope fiends, refugees,
a thuggish assortment of drunks, sneak thieves, sluts, and psychopaths. – Sumi Hahn

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I Hope They Serve Beer In Hell by Tucker Max

Citadel, 01/01/06

My name is Tucker Max, and I am an asshole. I get excessively drunk at inappropriate times, disregard social norms, indulge every whim, ignore the consequences of my actions, mock idiots and posers, sleep with more women than is safe or reasonable, and just generally act
like a raging dickhead. But, I do contribute to humanity in one very important way: I share my adventures with the world. —from the Introduction

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How to Eat, Move and be Healthy by Paul Chek

C.H.E.K. Institute, 02/07/04

Your personalized 4-step guide to looking and feeling great from the inside out! You are unique! The way we respond to food, exercise and stress varies person-to-person just as much as our fingerprints. This book will identify YOUR individual needs and teach you how to address issues that may be preventing you from looking and feeling your best.  Whether you want to lose weight, change your body shape, overcome a health challenge or optimize an already healthy lifestyle, this book will teach you how to achieve all your goals!

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Dogtown: The Legend of the Z Boys by C.R. Stecyk III

Burning Flags, 03/12/02

In the early 1970s, the sport of skateboarding had so waned from its popularity in the 1960s that it was virtually non-existent. In the Dogtown area of west Los Angeles, a group of young surfers known as the Zephyr Team (Z-Boys) was experimenting with new and radical moves and styles in the water which they translated to the street. When competition skateboarding returned in 1975, the Z-Boys turned the skating world on its head. Dogtown The Legend of the Z-Boys isa truly fascinating case study of just how an underground sport ascended on the world.

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Meat is for Pussies by John Joseph

Crush Books, 04/15/10

In Meat is for Pussies, John Joseph makes sure you never look at meat the same way. After painting a sickening picture of how things really are, John outlines a plan for a happier, healthier, and more fulfilling life. Do you want to continue living like a pussy, or are you ready to take back control of your life? It’s your call.

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Force of Nature by Laird Hamilton

Rodale, 10/28/08

Laird Hamilton has been hailed as the world’s greatest big-wave surfer. His first book, Force of Nature, allows readers a rare glimpse inside the unique philosophy that has created his circumstances. Though earning enough to pay the rent as any kind of surfer is next to impossible, Hamilton has ended up in the place we all desire to be: doing exactly what he loves, becoming the world’s best in the process, making a great living, being surrounded by nature and family, radiating peak health and fitness, and succeeding by any definition of the word.

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Surfing and Health by Dorian Paskowitz MD

Juliette, 01/01/07

Dorian “Doc” Paskowitz, the 87 year old Jewish surfer, is a remarkable man. The WW2 veteran left modern society and made surfing and health part of his life along with his wife Juliete and their 9 children, traveling around the globe all living together in a small camper on the search for good waves. Surfing and Health sheds light on how surfing and eating healthy fruits and vegetables will keep us young forever.

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