Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Book Review: What You Can When You Can: Healthy Living on Your Terms #wycwyc



What You Can When You Can should be the healthy living bible; its concepts should be thoughtfully approached and applied to daily living for best results.

Many of us in the weight loss world tend to overthink matters when it comes to formulating a plan for our weight loss. How many times have you thought:

If I just eliminate (insert food group here), the weight will come right off. I will never eat (insert food group here) ever again!

I will buy (insert product here) and I will lose the weight in (insert number) days. After that, I will be able to eat however I want to again.

If I exercise for (insert insanely unrealistic number) hours per day, the weight will melt off. I will do this for the rest of my life and never miss a workout.

We are in a constant search for the secret to weight loss. There has to be a plan, a pill, a cleanse, a workout, something that will help us lose the weight. We cling to the most complicated of methods thinking this is the time that it will stick. Until it doesn’t and we’re left defeated having lost a great sum of money but not much weight—we may have even gained weight.

That’s the way the current weight loss and healthy living world work. So many of us are caught up in a cycle of starting an unrealistic weight loss plan with good intentions, giving up, and starting again on Monday. What You Can When You Can teaches that it doesn’t have to be that way, and it’s actually very uncomplicated.

The most influential message that I received from this book is towards the very beginning, in chapter 2:

“Perfect is never coming. You will never be perfect. Your life will never be perfect…So what’s the point of wasting time, energy, money, sweat, and tears on something that will never happen—on an unachievable ideal?”

It’s hard to accept, but it’s the truth. And so, since we can’t be perfect, we can do what we can when we can and that is always enough. This means that the journey does not stop and end at various curves and hills in the road, but we keep on going whether we are creeping along at the pace of a turtle or we are running as fast as a cheetah. And guess what? We will probably find ourselves moving at both paces along this journey.

What You Can When You Can offers common sense tips on how to live a healthy life--from matters of the mind, food, exercise, home, and relationships, this book offers sound advice on each topic.

The concept is simply about doing what you can when you can. Instead of driving to the library, walk there. Park farther away from the store, maybe even blocks away so you can walk. If you can only fit in 10 minutes of activity at a time, do that instead of just giving up and doing nothing at all. Choose the apple instead of the chips. Take the stairs instead of the elevator, etc.

Doing what you can when you can also means that you can enjoy life, enjoy an occasional treat, choose to skip a workout to spend time with your family, etc. It means approaching healthy living in a realistic and maintainable way.

I actually wycwyc’d reading this book. I read a little bit each week until I had finally completed it. Three of us met each week at the A Journey to Thin Book Club on Google Hangouts and chatted about the book and how it applied to our goals and lives. We all three really enjoyed this book.

I highly recommend this book. It’s also special because it’s written by two healthy living bloggers, Carla Birnberg and Roni Noone.

You can find the book on Amazon (affiliate link):

What You Can When You Can: Healthy Living on Your Terms


  1. Sounds like a good book and so simple in reality.....its often when I over think ANYTHING and EVERYTHING that I tend to mess up my life, my eating, my exercise, my sleep schedule etc..oh, what the mind can do.

  2. This sounds like a great book! thank you for sharing. I also love that quote about perfection. No one is perfect. Took me a while to realize that during my teenage years and my early 20s but thank god we live and learn! :)

    For your kind words and for the fact you did what we had always hoped.

  4. You made my day! This is awesome on so many levels!!

  5. So glad I was able to do this book club with you. I definitely recommend this book!

  6. Thanks so much for posting this review. I'm getting that book!!!

  7. This book is readable - cover to cover - or it can be flipped through for little snippets like a daily reader.
    It's on my nightstand and I grab it daily - it's always good for a great tip and a giggle.
    Thank you!

    Senior Housing Seattle residence



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