cover image Lightness of Body and Mind: A Radical Approach to Weight and Wellness

Lightness of Body and Mind: A Radical Approach to Weight and Wellness

Sarah Hays Coomer. Rowman & Littlefield, $35 (200p) ISBN 978-1-4422-5508-1

Coomer, a personal trainer and health coach, takes a novel approach to weight loss that rejects calorie counting, dieting, and strenuous workouts. In this inspiring and compassionate book, she shares her own struggles with weight and body image, as well as her realization that deprivation and treating the body as the enemy rarely work. Coomer asserts that the more effective approach is to replace poor eating habits with small, positive changes. Instead of restricting foods, she argues, one should supplement them with healthy choices; rather than working out in a gym, find a pastime that you love, and then stick to it relentlessly. Coomer shares illustrative stories from her clients, noting that those who emphasized enjoyment of life fared better than those who followed restrictive diet or exercise plans, which often were eventually abandoned. Slow, constant weight loss, she contends, is the more effective route; in a chapter called “The Tortoise Totally Wins,” she demonstrates how “slow and steady” wins the weight-loss race. Readers seeking quick fixes and recipes won’t find them here. Though Coomer does include some familiar, practical tips (e.g., pack a lunch rather than eating out; reduce portion sizes), she mostly digs deeper, focusing on transformation and long-term well-being. (May)