Books: ‘Celebrity Body’ is fat on fundamentals |

Books: ‘Celebrity Body’ is fat on fundamentals

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Just by the cover photo of two flat abs and the catchy title, “Celebrity Body on a Budget” immediately draws readers. Happily, there’s substance to the 215-page book too.

Cornel Chin has worked with celebrities from Leonardo DiCaprio (who wrote a blurb saying Chin’s “training methods are second to none”) and Colin Firth to pop star Rick Astley during his career spanning more than two decades. But he realizes not everyone has the extra cash to hand over to personal trainers, so he compiled a book that walks readers through all of the steps they need to lose weight and gain muscle. He also knows many people don’t have hours to devote to exercise, so he provides helpful hints to squeeze calorie-burning activities into everyday life. For example, one chart lays out how many calories common household choirs like vacuuming, doing the laundry, scrubbing the floor and gardening burn. He also reminds people to park a little farther from stores, stretch after sitting at a computer for long periods and tone the tummy with breathing exercises.

The book begins with an introduction to your physical structure: your skeleton, muscles and body type. Each body type description includes a photo and a short explanation of cardio and resistance training strategies. The next chapter follows up with tips for buying all kinds of exercise equipment, from inexpensive DVDs to things like rowing machines.

But probably the two most useful chapters start on page 67, with a personal fitness evaluation that not only gives statistics on proper weight, resting and working heart rates and body mass index by age, but also fitness tests ranging from push ups and sit ups to squats and stair steps.

Once readers assess their fitness level, they’re ready to take on Chin’s workout. He devotes almost 60 pages to specific exercises, each with a written explanation and photos of proper form. The activities range from relatively easy knee lifts to side push ups on one arm.

He wraps up the guide with a dozen recipes, frequently asked questions and a resource list, making the book an excellent resource for achieving fitness goals.

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