The 4-Hour Body: An Uncommon Guide to Rapid Fat-Loss, Incredible Sex, and Becoming Superhuman
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The 4-Hour Body: An Uncommon Guide to Rapid Fat-Loss, Incredible Sex, and Becoming Superhuman

3.7 of 5 stars 3.70  ·  rating details  ·  10,051 ratings  ·  945 reviews
Thinner, bigger, faster, stronger... which 150 pages will you read?

Is it possible to:
Reach your genetic potential in 6 months?
Sleep 2 hours per day and perform better than on 8 hours?
Lose more fat than a marathoner by bingeing?

Indeed, and much more. This is not just another diet and fitness book.

The 4-Hour Body is the result of an obsessive quest, spanning more than...more
Hardcover, 571 pages
Published December 14th 2010 by Harmony (first published 2000)
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Community Reviews

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trivialchemy
I know no one reads my math or exercise book reviews, but f*ck you guys because books that I can leave on the back of my toilet and read from a few pages at a time are the only books that I have been able to get through for the past six months. Do not judge me.

I mean, I do know it's kind of embarrassing. No one wants to like a self-help book. Not on here anyway. Because we're all educated, self-aware goodreaders, and when we hear that cloying, mutually congratulatory snake-oil rhetoric, we see...more
Gnomad
Tim Ferriss, time management guru/guy on the internet I love to hate, followed up his first book, The 4 Hour Workweek, with a book designed to teach people how to hack their bodies. It's a hodgepodge of advice on everything from weight loss, bodybuilding, sex, running, sleep, and nutrition, and attempts to eschew conventional wisdom in these areas in favor of small (except not really), easily done (except not really), often overlooked (except not really) hacks that anyone can employ. Now, I expe...more
Camille
Anyone who read my review of 4 Hour Work Week knows that I think that Tim Ferriss is a total smug dick. That said, he is a smug dick who really seems to kinda know what he is talking about. There were a ton of super useful tips in 4HWW and he really spells things out to you to total dummy level. So when I found out he had a diet book, I figured I should check it out. This dude is the king of of shortcuts, SO if anyone was going to be helpful (and most efficient) in helping me achieve my meager w...more
John
II'd never read a health book which starts out by describing being backstage at a NIN concert.

I knew I was in for a wild ride.

In the 4-Hour Body, Tim Ferriss chronicles his eclectic experiences at hacking his body: weight loss & muscle gain, perfect abs and perfect baseball swing, tripling his testosterone, holding his breath for three minutes, & more.

As a family physician, I can tell you that most of his material is not that revolutionary: his diet is just a simple variant of a low g...more
Mike Hankins
This is my longest review to date, I have a lot to say about this. Let's begin, shall we?

This book is a little unique. You can think of it as a collection of short essays (my understanding is that the book started life as a collection of blog posts by author Tim Ferris) that attempt to “hack” the human body using little tricks and unexpected methods. Ferris likes to quote the 80/20 principle, and in this book, he's trying to find the least amount of effort, that 20% or less of work, that yields...more
Jerzy
Two stars instead of one, because it was so amazingly bad I just couldn't stop reading.
Reader's digest version:

"I'm Tim Ferris. Last week I tracked the weather for five days and noticed that it rained on the four days when I didn't carry an umbrella. But on the day when I did bring an umbrella, it stayed dry out. So obviously, carrying an umbrella prevents rain.
Now, some scientists may scoff and say that this flies in the face of known science and conventional wisdom, or that at least they'd nee...more
Lauren
Book is simultaneously brilliant and insane. I have heard of Ferriss and his experimentation and "4-Hour" approach to life for years, but this was my first foray into his brand of "research". Dude is thorough and committed, that's for sure.

It is important to note that this is not a conventional read - the book is meant to be skimmed, only reading sections that interest to you. In that way, it seems more like a "Choose Your Own Adventure" book: you want to lose fat? build muscle? increase streng...more
Riki
Timothy Ferris clearly thinks quite highly of himself and doesn't hesitate to let you know how superior he is to you in every way in this incredibly long (592 pages) doorstop of a book. In it he professes to have the solution to many of your health woes and promises to help you accomplish such things as "Sleep 2 hours per day and perform better than on 8 hours." (I'll spare you the pain of reading his incredibly scientific and boring explanation by telling you that this requires an unbelievably...more
Mark
This book is crazy. Timothy Ferriss is narcissistic and obsessive to an intense degree - at one point he gets a blood glucose monitor installed in his skin so he can graph his levels. His constant humblebragging is pretty hard to take.

The 4 Hour Body is laid out like a recipe book based on what goals you want to achieve. There are chapters for weight loss, muscle gain, endurance improvements, swimming, s_x techniques, testosterone improvement, injury rehabilitation, and so on. He is not kidding...more
Christine
After knowing so many people that have successfully changed their eating habits with the help of this book, and then watching "Fat, Sick & Nearly Dead" and "Food, Inc." on Netflix, I finally had to try it myself.

Going into week three of 4HB style eating, and I've lost 4lbs with minimal effort. The much bigger deal? Since dropping gluten & high-fructose corn syrup from my diet, my allergies have all but disappeared, and my inflammation has dropped so much that most of my shoulder pain (wh...more
Trilok
Have you read Tim Ferris's blog posts? It reads like an infomercial. How to do X (which usually takes years or is nearly impossible) in 4hrs (or for free). Over the years, X has been:
1) Running a successful business
2) Losing 10lbs
3) Adding 34Lbs of muscle
4) Learning a new language
5) Flying around the world

Critics call him a snake oil salesman, his fans (and there are plenty) call him a genius life hacker. In reality, he might be both. His accomplishments are very real (I'm writing about him, ar...more
Casey Malone
So, there is pretty much no one I know who has a better grasp on nutrition and what's what than my former co-worker Sylvain Dubrofsky. And in the lead up to this book's release, he was constantly sharing excepts and interviews with the Author, so I took notice. When it came out, the Kindle Edition was $10, and I will spend $10 on PRETTY MUCH ANYTHING if it catches my interest, so I picked it up.

First off, this dude is two things - obsessed with his body and a total nerd. Not a nerd like I am, wh...more
Grant
I get the impression many people miss the point of Tim's work. Does he come off as the kid who was pretty unpopular in High School scrambling for attention? Yeah, a little. But he offers a starting point and a perspective. N=1 experiments. You are your own N. Try things, isolate variables. Do a science on yourself. I see a lot of reviews complaining that "this stuff doesn't work". It worked for Tim. Find what works for you.

I'm a little biased. I beat Tim to the punch on most of this stuff, and...more
James Mcdaniel
This was by far the single most effective "self-help" book I have encountered. In fact it is quite possibly the only effective self-help book I have ever encountered. Whatever your goal may be, whether it is weight loss, muscle gain, healing old injuries, becoming a better swimmer, or having better sex, this book not only gives you simple, easy to follow instructions supported by a plethora of data, but everything I tried worked, and worked quickly. Everything.

I do not usually like books like th...more
Don
Ok, what can I say here......folks, this may be one of the most dangerous health books even written. Authored by self proclaimed internet guru, Tim Ferriss, the 4-Hour Body is a rambling mix of diet, workout, drugs, sex and body manipulation that should be called 'The Narcissist's Bible'. Using the 20/80 rule for all of his information, Ferriss tries to convince the reading that you need only minimum effort for maximum results - be it eating, running, weight lifting, etc. He uses modern sports t...more
Barrie
Okay, Timothy is a crazy weirdo who thinks everything he does is perfect, and because he's tested it - then it's true and if you don't do it, you are then dumb and wrong.

Well, maybe he really isn't all those things - but that's how he comes across in this book. Filled with what he promises as a "minimalist approach" to a better life, I read this as a joke at first and also to see what the heck he had to say. First off, he can't quite say that anything he proposes you do with weight, sex, sleep...more
Melody Wilson
The Good:

This is probably the best nonfiction I've read in 2010. It doesn't take long to be convinced that the author is someone we should listen to (this man is clearly OBSESSED!!), but more importantly, the book is extremely readable. If I were to write a book on the same topic with the same information, it would probably come out reading like the DSM-IV, but Ferriss does a good job of including plenty of entertaining anecdotes and humor to help us along, not to mention simple and concise expl...more
Margot
The 4-Hour Body is a hulk of a book, weighing in at over 600 pages. But Ferris comes right out in the intro and encourages readers to use it in an a la carte fashion, based on their personal needs and interests. I did not heed said advice, since I wanted to review the entire content of the book, rather than just what pertains to me (obviously, I'm not planning on gaining 30 pounds of muscle weight in as many days).

I found this book unexpectedly and deeply engrossing. Every time I sat down to rea...more
Eveline Chao
I dislike the way Ferriss delivers his messages (his writing "voice" I guess) both in this book and his last, which feels oddly like '80s advertising copy or a fake doctor in an infomercial, along the lines of "with these 100% guaranteed techniques you'll find yourself able to facilitate 507% increase in blah blah blah..." (I should also note that I've met Ferriss in person and his actual real-life conversational manner is friendly & humble & nothing at all like his somewhat off-putting...more
Jim
I found this book really useful. Real experiments backed up by real data.

I'm a life-long experimenter, and The 4HB appeals to me because it teaches people how to do experiments, track the data, and draw conclusions from it.

A number of reviews confuse how this book is marketed with the content it contains. If you find the marketing distasteful or infomercial-y or cheesy, fine, whatever, it's your opinion. Personally, I think the marketing strategy for this book has been well-planned and executed,...more
Begoña
I hated this book, mostly because it sells as
science this guy's statistically insignificant, biased and poorly designed life experiment. It's less entertaining than a car crash, but has a bit of the morbid interest about the damage it may cause to society.
Not to mention the sex bit, which is pathetic in its definition, scope, and intended results. Luckily, for the better knowing women it will probably mark him as a clueless lover.
I read the first half, abandoned it for a year, and then skimmed...more
Eugene
К этой книге я подбирался долго. Вначале смущало то, что в переводе ее нет, а медицинских терминов должно быть много. Но когда книга попалась мне на глаза еще раз - я решился. И, откровенно говоря, совсем не жалею. "The 4-Hour Body: An Uncommon Guide to Rapid Fat-Loss, Incredible Sex, and Becoming Superhuman" by Timothy Ferriss - это книга про хакеров и для хакеров, только не информационных систем, а собственного тела.

Книга больше похожа на дневник экспериментатора, чем на руководство к действию...more
Libbeth
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Kristen
Aug 05, 2012 Kristen rated it 3 of 5 stars Recommends it for: data fanatics, exercise fanatics
Recommended to Kristen by: jean egan
Shelves: non-fiction, health
The upsides:

1) If you skip the chapters that don't apply to your life, you can read this entire book in 1-2 days.

2) The anecdotal evidence in support of Ferriss's diet plan is compelling.

3) The author can be amusing. His humorous commentary can make dry, statistical-based information more fun to read.

4) There are photos of exercises you can do to help strengthen various muscle groups. This is good, because some health books describe fitness regimens and then never provide you visual instruction....more
Sylvia
Sep 06, 2012 Sylvia marked it as limbo
Shelves: nonfiction
I just wanted to read the sections on fat loss/the "slow carb diet" and the PAGG stack. Those were pretty informative and at generally the right level of detail that I require. The book is a good starting place for learning some of this stuff; if you try starting to learn about it by straight Googling, you're likely to get pretty overwhelmed pretty quickly.

That said, at least some (if not all/most) of the key material in the book is also on Ferriss' blog. For example, re: the basics of the slow...more
Matt
A lot of people miss the point of this book. It's possibly because, as one reviewer said, Tim Ferriss comes across as a smug dick. As a writer, his voice leaves a lot to be desired.

I digress. Tim throws out a lot of factoids, many of which may be oversimplified or even wrong out of context. But his methodology is right. The point of this book that seems to get missed is to 1) use your body as a laboratory and 2) MEASURE EVERYTHING.

He records everything meticulously. He changes one variable at a...more
Xavier Shay
Not sure how to rate this book. On one hand it's an addictive read. It's a freaking tome and I was through it in a week. Tim's commitment to self-experimentation is pretty amazing.

On the other I felt a lot of it was written from a perspective too far removed from my own to be useful. Tim's background in the nutrition industry is obvious, and most chapters focus around some combination of drugs or micronutrients, and this is a persistent bias. The chapter on "perfecting the perfect sleep" doesn't...more
Epicurus
I read this book a couple years ago so I don't know if I can really give it an accurate rating but it sits on my bookshelf staring at me occasionally.

This book was pretty informative, has all kinds of random chapters throughout. Some of it helpful, some of it not at all. The author has a habit of putting his body through some real intensive stuff. I have to say that a lot of what Timothy Ferriss does in this book are not realistic things to be done by others and if they are they really should b...more
Pete
I learned at least 100 things I didn't know. Most of it is based on his own experiences, but covered by reasonable looks at research. It COULD change your attitude about weight loss, exercise, and yes, even sex.

His writing style is from the perspective of a 30ish bachelor enamored with trying to perfect himself (aren't we ALL trying to do that!?). It can be very direct and a bit coarse to some ears; not mine.

He kindly divides the book into sections that cover a given topic. For instance, there...more
Daniel G.
Jun 08, 2011 Daniel G. rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition Recommends it for: People wanting to transform their body
Did you realize that everything you know about health and fitness is wrong?

For starters, what does "healthy" and "fit" mean? They are abstract terms. Instead of vague notions, in The 4-Hour Body, Timothy Ferriss shows you how to get specific results in a number of areas, from how to:

• lose 2% of body fat in two weeks
• learn to swim in 10 days
• add 45kg (100lb) to your bench press
• sleep for two hours a day and feel fully rested and alert.

I bought this book because I'm publicly committed to readi...more
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Timothy Ferriss, nominated as one of Fast Company’s “Most Innovative Business People of 2007,” is an angel investor and author of the #1 New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and BusinessWeek bestseller, The 4-Hour Workweek, which has been sold into 35 languages.

He has been featured by more than 100 media outlets, including The New York Times, The Economist, TIME, Forbes, Fortune, CNN, and CBS. He...more
More about Timothy Ferriss...
The 4-Hour Work Week The 4-Hour Chef: The Simple Path to Cooking Like a Pro, Learning Anything, and Living the Good Life 4-Hour Workweek, Expanded and Updated, The: Expanded and Updated, with Over 100 New Pages of Cutting-Edge Content. The Slow Carb Diet Cookbook: A Companion to the 4-Hour Body: Volume 2 Submit Everyone: The Guerrilla Jiu-Jitsu Files: Classified Field Manual for Becoming a Submission-focused Fighter

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