I recommend Strength Training for Fat Loss to my own clients on a regular basis when their goal is maximize fat loss through resistance training, to save time, and especially when the goal involves doing something different than traditional strength or bodybuilding-style programs. Nick teaches how to optimize resistance training design to give the best of both worlds – building strength and muscle along with increasing the metabolic effect of training to burn more fat at the same time.
tumminelloMetabolic weight training, circuit training and resistance training with complexes are very popular and not exactly brand new at this point in time – the basic concept has been discussed before in many other books and online programs. However Tumminello approaches the subject in a way that makes this book different.
Even when his workout programs are time-bound, you can use what you learn in this book over and over again for life. That puts this book in the category of “great reference book” to keep on your shelf for life and refer back to it through the future.
This is what I like about Nick’s approach the most: He gives you resistance training templates, which means the general category of exercise (movement pattern), and then he fills about 90% of the book with exercise instruction, including excellent black and white photos. By keeping chapters on theory and background to a minimum and allowing so much space dedicated to explaining the exercises, Nick is able to do two things:
1. All the basic exercises are included – Nick doesn’t assume everyone knows how to perform a squat or lunge or Romanian deadlift, so he devotes space to these fundamentals.
2. He also includes unique and unusual exercises that most people have never even heard of.
Some examples: Angled rotary press with the end of an Olympic bar (aka “Land Mine” or T-bar), Liberty Press, Shovel Clean, “Uppercut” press, Break Dancer Push up, Core bar cable press, and so on.
The mixture of the fundamentals and the unusual, lesser-known exercises ensures that you are unlikely to get bored. Also, by including the basics, the author has made sure not to turn this program into a novelty. Popularity of various fitness trends may come and go, and metabolic training is riding a high of popularity right now. But whether it fades or not, it is unlikely that this program will ever get placed in a training “fad” category.
The exercises use the following equipment: barbells, dumbbells, a T-bar or barbell in a “land mind apparatus,” kettle bells, elastic resistance bands, cable-pulley exercises, and body weight exercises. A bench and exercise mat are also helpful’ There are even a handful of machines (not many though) where the best way to focus on one muscle is on the machine (lying leg curl for example). It’s not necessary to own all this equipment if you train at home – you can use the exercise templates to make substitutions with whatever equipment you have available.
As I mentioned above, Nick gives you workout program templates. I won’t spoil the whole thing and give you all of them, but just so you know what I’m talking about, here’s one example that’s called the Big Four Circuit.”
1. Upper body pulling exercise
2. lower body leg exercise
3. upper body pushing exercise
4. lower body hip exercise
After you’ve chosen a template, you can plug and play using the huge collection of exercises available in the book. What if you’re confused and you still don’t know which exercises to choose? Nick has taken care of that by including sample workout routines so you don’t have to do anything but follow what’s on the workout charts at first.
After you’ve followed some of Nick’s workouts verbatim for a while, you will understand the principles and templates and if you choose, you can keep using the templates and just plug in new exercises, and you have a whole new program on the spot. Here’s what Nick has accomplished by taking this approach:
A lot of consumers of workout programs do not want to deal with designing their own programs. The request (complaint) we always hear as trainers is, “Just tell me what to do! Just give me a list of exercises, sets and reps. As often heard in the cliche’d self help maxim, we sometimes refer to that as “Giving you a fish.” This makes the client a happy camper, but is not necessarily in your best interest, unless you want to be dependent on a trainer for the rest of your life.
Most trainers understand this need and desire for the instant gratification of having a workout program handed to you on a sheet of paper and simply saying, “Follow this.” But they also understand the pitfalls of this approach – dependency and insufficient education. By giving you BOTH – workout templates with exercises to plug into the slots – and specific, done-for-you workouts, Nick’s is also “Teaching you to fish.” You get the best of both worlds.
My closing comments: There is a very brief section on nutrition, but this book is a training program, not a diet program. In the span of one very short chapter, you’ll get the absolute most basic nutrition fundamentals for fat loss, advice on the 4 types of fad diets to avoid, and lists of commonly eaten healthy foods. No heavy pitch for supplements either, only a passing mention of a few like creatine, that are support with evidence, which is a big plus in my book.
In the last chapter (10), Nick closes out with “Fat Loss Training For Life” which is important and makes sense to re-emphasize at the end, given his template-based approach.
If this style of training (metabolic resistance training), fits your goals and personal preferences, you can’t go wrong with this book. Overall 5 stars.
This review was based on the paperback edition.
Get Book At Amazon:

Subscribe to the Burn the Fat weekly newsletter and get my ebook, "The 20 Best Fat-Burning, Muscle-Building Recipes Of All Time" FREE!
Your email is safe with me!