Book Review- How Bad Do You Want It?: Mastering the Psychology of Mind over Muscle by Matt Fitzgerald #Allaboutrunning Wednesday Blog Link up

Another Book review! Ha ha, my #allaboutrunning link ups have had a lot of book reviews recently, but I can’t help it.  Right now, I feel like a sponge and I have been a bit obsessed with reading running content.  With my own illness, and now my daughter is sick.  I have also had a bit more down time to read.

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Product details

How Bad Do You Want it? Mastering the Psychology of Mind of Muscle 

  • Paperback: 272 pages
  • Publisher: VeloPress; 1 edition (October 15, 2015)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1937715418
  • ISBN-13: 978-1937715410

I actually acquired this book as an audio book. Something new to me.  I wasn’t sure if I would like it, however this was the perfect style of book for an audio book. The timing of me reading this book was absolutely perfect, as well.  Maybe that is why I was drawn to it? The message was great and overall the content was limited.

The book starts out bouncing back and forth between personal Matt’s introduction to running and personal struggles with the mental side of running, with the science and theory of endurance sports.   The theory and psychology was interesting, but not overly heavy or deep into the nitty gritty scientific components making this an easy read for most any .

Through this introduction Fitzgerald explains how much of our limitations are driven by our mental strength verse the physical limitations.  Our body self-regulating based on the perception of effort.  That training not only trains our bodies physical limitation it alters the brains perception of effort allowing us to be stronger.  He explains that, for endurance athletes, developing ones mental game is very limited outside of the parameters of training.  That training your mental game needs to happen with in and along side your physical training to get the most out of yourself.

After the introduction, much of the book become individual anecdotal stories of various athletes who manage different types of mental strength and over came different mental barriers for personal success.  I love that Matt Fitzgerald includes a variety of sports in this portion of the book; tri-athletes, cyclist and even rugby players included.  Each story has a unique element and I found them to be very uplifting.  The content in these sections are limited. I don’t want to share individual stories as that would take away from the author and the purpose of reading the book.

This book contains great information highlighting the importance of the psychology of endurance athletes and uplifting stories to go along with that message.  The book however, is not a “how to” on training that key component.  It doesn’t include practical exercises that one could apply to their personal training. He does however, discuss these components in his 80/20 book. (review coming soon!)

Overall I thought this book was well written, the stories matched the message and were very uplifting. This book is great for any level of runner; newbie or elites. Timing wise, this book was just what I needed as I work through some anxiety issues.  I think this book is great for starting a new training cycle and the uplifting stories would be a great message during a taper phase.  I will definitely revisit during my next taper.1062163 us audible sanamd homestead medium rectangle 3 300x250

As I mentioned, this was my first audio book and the way it was written and each chapter being its own mini-story was perfect for this form. It was easy to break between each chapter and restart on my next run.   I think a content heavy book, like Science of Running, would be hard in this format.  Matt Fitzgerald book, however was great.

I am completing Matt Fitzgeralds 80/20 Training book.  It’s a super fast easy read so I will easily be able to get a follow up post during Thanksgiving break.

I hope you enjoyed my Book Review.  Be sure to check out some of my other Book Reviews!

What running books do you recommend? Do you prefer content or stories more? Comment below!

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Avid Runner, mother, wife and teacher. On a wonderful journey, taking it one mile at a time.

19 thoughts on “Book Review- How Bad Do You Want It?: Mastering the Psychology of Mind over Muscle by Matt Fitzgerald #Allaboutrunning Wednesday Blog Link up

  1. I really enjoyed your review on this book. I have thought about using audio books as well and it seems like it was a good way to listen to a book when you’re busy. I’ve never thought of reading a book on running, but I might now! Thanks for the review!


  2. I do like audio books, especially when they are narrated by the author, so you get exactly the emotion he meant to transmit, through his voice. I have never read a running book before but this one sounds very motivational.


  3. I am glad to hear that someone has had a positive experience with audio books. I normally only listen to them when I am in the car or need to study (I am old fashioned in my reading) however there is something about hearing the voice of the author reading their words.


  4. This sounds like an interesting read, especially for those who do like to run. I have to admit I only use audio books now as I struggle to read due to my eyesight so always good to have new ideas.


  5. This would be a great gift for my son. He participates in all marathons he can find. He gets really sore so I can see how this book would help him achieve mind over muscle.


  6. I’ll be going back to running and this would be a great idea to include to make me much more motivated as soon as I go back to running. Probably audiobook would be best since I am always on the road.


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