Book Review: How Bad Do You Want It?

How Bad Do You Want It? Matt Fitzgerald

How Bad Do You Want It? Matt Fitzgerald

Book title: How Bad Do You Want It?

Author: Matt Fitzgerald

Release date: 2015

What’s this book about? Subtitled “mastering the psychology of mind over muscle,” HBDYWI looks at epic moments in endurance sports to mine habits and tactics the rest of us can use to cultivate our own mental strength. Performing at your best means being mentally prepared to confront fears we all face — failure, suffering, change, etc. Fitzgerald examines the “psychobiological” model of athletic performance, exploring how athletes are able to overcome physical limits with mental might. But it’s not just a lot of pyscho-babble — each chapter focuses on a specific race and specific athlete, putting you inside breathtaking race situations.

Why you should read it? Look, it’s not much of a stretch to say this book changed my life. It helped me recognize and identify my mental weaknesses and improve them. I approached my training and racing differently this year, with a mindset developed by reading this book — and I kicked some tail. Learning to accept pain and not deny it; finding contentment in the process, and more. If you’ve ever started a race full of doubt, or regretted backing off the pace, this book is for you.

Favorite quotes:

“Bracing yourself — always expecting your next race to be your hardest yet — is a much more mature and effective way to prepare mentally for competition.”

“Beating all 11 of the women to her left would be harder than anything Jenny had done before — it would demand her absolute best effort, and perhaps even that would not be enough. But she was determined to try for nothing less.”

“Siri had to let go of that dream and find contentment in the moment-to-moment process of chasing it…”

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