What can you really do in 4 hours?

Full disclosure: I haven’t read “The 4-Hour Workweek” or “The 4-Hour Body.” I tend to hear about the latest “best selling” health book and let it zip in one ear and out the other. My take on making healthy choices is that they take a little time (though not a lot as Mark Bittman admirabily reminds us about cooking) and a little work, but they are feasible. Quick fixes, gimicks (e.g., cleanses), shticks just aren’t my thing.

But, since no less than 3 people have mentioned Tim Ferriss’ book to me this week and the NY Times has a review today, it seemed a brief comment might be worth posting.

I’m going to take Dwight Garner at his word on the tips included in Ferriss’ book. My sense is that the book takes scientifically sound ideas (e.g., self monitoring) and turns them on their head and takes them out to the extreme (e.g, weighing feces). No less than two colleagues of mine have had a similar take on the book – there are valid strategies buried in there, and they aren’t new, but those strategies don’t sell books. So, Ferriss has surrounded them with a bunch of gimmicks that make headlines (as surely his “humanitarian” efforts with the yoga instructor are meant to, and do).

For my money, I’d rather buy a pedometer, a bathroom scale and a notepad to track my activity, weight and diet.

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