If you are a recreational athlete and don’t care so much about competition, you still need to be doing your proverbial homework to make sure you have good form, don’t get hurt, and improve your mental game.
So let’s discuss some amazing books for athletes and why they foster exceptional development.
1. The Talent Code by Daniel Coyle
Ever heard of myelination? Didn’t think so. Yet this process has so much to do with how we develop the skills necessary to become an elite athlete or basically to become good at anything at all. The Talent Code describes the process by which people become “prodigies” (spoiler alert: it involves thousands upon thousands of hours of correct repetition). Daniel Coyle breaks down this complex process into something that is easy to understand.
I request that the parents of the athletes I consult for read this book so that they understand what we are trying to accomplish. Athletes will finish this book with the feeling that they can do anything by putting in the work. It is inspiring in a very realistic way. There are no shortcuts here. You have to do the work to be great.
2. Thrive by Brendan Brazier
Would you like to know the secrets of an Ironman Triathlete? This is the book for you. Brendan Brazier has smoked the competition in Ironman’s, and is also the founder of Vega Sports Performance Products. That is a pretty impressive resume. Even finishing one Ironman is a grueling undertaking and Brazier did it as a career for a long time.
That means he was training about 40 hours a week. This book personally changed my perspective about nutrition and a lot of other things. You will learn how Brendan went from someone whom he felt was an ‘average’ athlete to a polished professional.
3. When The Past is Always Present by Dr. Ronald Ruden
As a certified hypnotist and Havening Practitioner, I work with a lot of athletes who are physically doing everything they should be doing, but can’t break through the mental barriers to get to the next level. As Tori Nyberg would say, “we train our bodies everyday, but when was the last time you trained your mind?”
This is ultimately a very important point. I am a proactive person, so I think you should destroy any little gremlins that might be hiding in your sports locker by doing some Havening or Hypnosis sooner rather than later.
4. Unleash Your True Athletic Potential by Julianne Soviero
Okay, so I am the author, BUT I can’t think of a more important book for all athletes. The information in it has come from being a lifelong athlete, certified personal trainer, hypnotist, Havening Practitioner, and someone who is addicted to continuing education.
I have shadowed some of the best trainers, athletes, social workers, and physical therapists in the world over the last decade. I became obsessed with ways to improve athletic performance after an injury nearly destroyed my pitching career, and the information in the book reflects that.
5. Waterski Girl Wonder: A Journey of Perseverance by Shellie Blum
The first female freestyle waterski ramp jumper in the world, Shellie Blum has endured her share of grueling setbacks. In this inspiring book, she takes you through her journey of perseverance. Whether or not you’re a waterskier, you’re bound to enjoy this inspiring true story.
6. The Pursuit of Endurance: Harnessing the Record-Breaking Power of Strength and Resilience, by Jennifer Pharr Davis
In “Pursuit of Endurance”, Jennifer Davis reveals what it takes to maximize endurance and leverage the power of strength and resilience. She also documents her remarkable achievements in the field of endurance hiking, backpacking, and trail running.
These are some of the best motivational books on sports for athletes.