9780062282392_p0_v3_s260x420Reviewed by Poppy Johnson

Tony Horton is the creator of the bestselling workout program P90X (please remember this), and he writes about 11 lifestyle rules that will change your life in his book, The Big Picture. These lifestyle changes are to be applied to your work, personal life, or any situation that requires rising to a challenge. These change center around theories like being the best, finding your purpose, planning, allowing freedom, finding balance and staying flexible in your approach to life.

There are sections included in the book with advice from other experts (such as celebs and CEOs), information on Tony’s personal life, and information on his diet and fitness regimen (P90X). All are menat to help the reader regain balance for a better life. The book focuses heavily on bringing all life lessons back around to his diet and fitness plan P90X. For example, in the chapter on “Getting Real,” Horton’s advice is good regarding changing your attitude to include focusing on your mental and emotional place in life to problem-solve and overcome present obstacles. But in chapter 9, titled “Finding a Balance”, the advice circles back around to a good workout (could you utilize P90X?) and how intense it should be to improve our attitude.

Personally, I have many books on fitness and eating right, and whether I do it all the time or not, I know exactly how I am supposed to be doing it. So the overuse of information on that topic, and the topic of – yes, once again – P90X tended to make me want to keep scanning forward to get back to the life changing advice bits. Yes, workout and fitness are good life changers, so if you are a fitness buff this book will work well for you.

I apologize, dear reader, for the continued and otherwise annoying references to P90X. I promise that I only mentioned it a small fraction of the times Tony Horton mentions it in his book and we both did it for a very good reason. I did it to test you, and if you were not annoyed, then this book is for you. If you found the references to “you know what” unbearable, then don’t buy this book, just buy the program and get it over with. The advice in the book is common knowledge by now, and the book is a thinly veiled advertisement for “something which will not be named.” But it is still good to hear another person’s perspective on the issue of being better at life today, and for that I will always be grateful for this type of book.

Rating: ★★★☆☆ 

After a decade of working in several NYC law departments and teaching, Poppy decided she enjoyed writing full-time. She currently works as a freelance writing consultant, and lives with her husband and sons on the East Coast.

Review copy was provided free of any obligation by HarperCollins. No monetary or any other form of compensation was received.