We know you like to get in the zone, earbuds in, while crushing a workout with Aaptiv. But, during downtime, who doesn’t enjoy settling in with a cup of tea (or glass of vino), nose buried in a book? In hopes of helping you discover your next title to tackle, we’ve rounded up our current favorite nutrition, wellness, and fitness books.
A few of these titles are rooted in fiction, others entirely stuffed with recipes. Regardless, each is a page-turner. You’re bound to find immense motivation, a killer meal, or your next mantra. So prepare your Kindle, Amazon wishlist, or next Barnes and Noble trip. You’ll want to check out at least one of these.
What We’re Reading: Nutrition, Wellness, and Fitness Books
Fitness and Motivation
From award-winning athletes to the secrets of successful runners, these fitness books will inspire you to give your workouts all you’ve got.
Unbound by Steph Jagger
Already being compared to Cheryl Strayed’s Wild and Elizabeth Gilbert’s Eat, Pray, Love, Unbound has more to offer than most fitness books. It tells the empowering story of author Steph Jagger. Successful yet unsatisfied in her life, Jagger left her job, home, and possessions to accomplish an unbelievable feat. She set out to ski four million vertical feet in one year. This accomplishment would take the average skier 25 years to reach. Jagger followed winter through nine countries, including North and South America, Asia, Europe, and New Zealand. She also broke herself down in every sense of the phrase. Fueled by the ski lift signs that read “Raise Restraining Device,” she would accomplish her goal, change her life, and inspire readers to do the same.
A Life Without Limits: A World Champion’s Journey by Chrissie Wellington
Author and runner Chrissie Wellington has one seriously impressive list of accomplishments. She’s the world’s number one female Ironman triathlete (she’s won a whopping 13 times). She’s also a world record holder, a four time World Champion, and a Sunday Times number one bestselling author. In A Life Without Limits, Wellington details her story of going from a sporty girl from Virginia to a world-renowned champion. An inspiration both for her successes and personal character, Wellington’s story is not one to be missed.
Run to Overcome by Meb Kelflezighi and Dick Patrick
While this title is also about an extremely impressive runner from small beginnings, Run to Overcome tells a different, but equally impactful, story. After a brutal war, Meb Kelflezighi arrived in America with practically nothing. He had little to no experience speaking English, let alone racing. Even so, he came to be one of the most successful runners of his time; he won the 2009 New York City Marathon, as well as an Olympic silver medal.
But as always, success isn’t 100% linear. Shortly after his Olympic win, Meb’s everything came to a halt. Each chapter takes you from his war-torn country, through extremely hard work, to its outcomes. Each chapter has a “Runner’s Tip” and “Overcomer’s Tip.” The latter can be applied to both running and life goals—a unique offering the realm of fitness books. Readers get a taste of everything, from training tips to historic facts and work values.
If fitness books aren’t your thing, get inspired to eat right and make it fun with these fresh foodie reads.
Currently a #1 best seller in Amazon’s Vegan Cooking category, Thug Kitchen is more than just a kitschy name. Created by true realists, the book avoids all of the pompous hype that surrounds healthy choices. A great things since most of us can’t afford cacao powder imported from Ecuador. It includes over 100 recipes that, in addition to those found on their website, will take you from beginner cook to Top Chef. Roasted Beer and Lime Cauliflower Tacos? Yes, please. Once you’ve mastered this cover-to-cover, feel free to pick up or gift the team’s other tongue-in-cheek reads: Thug Kitchen 101: Fast as F*ck and Thug Kitchen Party Grub: For Social Motherf*ckers. Your friends will love you for it.
Forks Over Knives – The Cookbook by Del Sroufe
This isn’t just a cookbook. It’s a lifestyle. Soufe has delivered a decadent whole-food, plant-based diet that is unbelievably simple to maintain. With more than 300 (!) recipes, the cookbook approaches healthy eating with an emphasis on abundance. Sroufe’s mouth-watering meals are made without meat, dairy, and oils. Our favorites include Breakfast Quinoa with Apple Compote and Polenta Pizza with Tomatoes and Basil. All in an affordable, approachable package. Mmmmm…
Food Freedom Forever by Melissa Hartwig
Written by the creator of Whole30, Food Freedom Forever practically screams, “it’s not a diet, it’s a lifestyle!” Hartwig knows that even after a diet, keeping healthy habits is no easy task. Therefore, this handy book tackles every possible conflict you can think of: weight gain, cravings, and triggers, oh-my. Hartwig’s plan has three parts. You’ll discover how to strengthen your newfound good habits, boost your willpower, and practice foolproof eating. You’ll learn to eat well throughout times of stress, peer pressure—even the delightfully dreaded holiday season. By the end you’ll have your plans on lock, discovering what food freedom really is.
You’ve revved up your body with fitness books, got your food game in order, now expand your mind with our wellness picks.
The Body Book by Cameron Diaz
Praised since its release in late 2013, The Body Book is nothing like Diaz’s previous projects. In this book she takes a scientific approach to many a health topics—eating, staying active, mindfulness, you name it. Don’t let a fear of confusing scientific terms scare you, though. Everything is broken down into layman’s terms. It’s not only understandable, but easily applicable.This isn’t a “how to” manual on how to get the lean, altered body of a celebrity. Rather, a series of lessons and knowledge that looks beyond trends to give your body what it needs. Those who enjoy this book can continue the conversation with Diaz’s follow-up title, The Longevity Book.
The Universe Has Your Back by Gabrielle Bernstein
Connecting to the Universe isn’t just for yogis, people! If you’re feeling out of control and looking for a way to get back in the zone, look no further than The Universe Has Your Back: Transform Fear to Faith. Gabrielle Bernstein is an acclaimed author and wellness expert. Oprah dubbed her “a new thought leader” (casual). If that alone hasn’t convinced you to pick up her latest book, then its premise will. To be frank, The Universe Has Your Back cuts the crap of “Live, Laugh, Love” Pinterest quotes and generalized positivity, giving overused sayings back their meaning and importance. It gets you both centered and grounded, with love always at the core of it all. Even if you’re not into green drinks and chanting ommmm, this title is a soulful pick-me-up.
10% Happier by Dan Harris
When Dan Harris—former war correspondent, ABC News anchor, and co-anchor for Good Morning America—experienced a panic attack on live television, he knew he needed a way to calm the voice inside his head. With a newly opened mind he took a deep look into the world of mindfulness. Throughout this title he explores vastly different methods of understanding this mystifying topic, from neuroscience to spirituality. His outlandish tales and interactions lead the reader on a wild and insightful journey. Captivating, and entertaining, you’ll get more than just a nice story out of this.