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Your Guide to the Most Legit Training Programs

Our training expert Sean Hyson created a free e-book that offers unbiased product reviews on the top diet and workout plans on the market. Which one is right for you?

There’s no shortage of fitness, nutrition and health products on the market, and trying to find the best fit for you can be a real gamble. Eliminate some of the guesswork on your way to reaching your fitness goals with the new, free e-book, 2012 Buyer’s Guide to the Best Training and Nutrition Programs. Written by Sean Hyson, Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist (C.S.C.S.), nutrition fanatic and Group Training Director for Muscle & Fitness and Men’s Fitness, the Buyer's Guide weeds out which online training programs will get you the results you want and which products are really legit before you invest.

What motivated you to write the 2012 Buyer's Guide to the Best Training and Nutrition Programs
Sean Hyson: There are an almost infinite number of diet and workout plans out there. Even the most fitness-savvy people have a hard time deciding which one is right for them. I wanted to save people time and money by giving them an unbiased review from a guy who's seen—and tried—pretty much everything in the fitness market.

Why are you the best person to write it? 
I've been writing about exercise and nutrition for nearly 10 years, and living it a lot longer. There are plenty of product reviews available online, but their credibility is often dubious. I don't play favorites. I looked at all these programs and summarized what they're about, singled out their unique high points, and exposed what I consider their glaring weaknesses. I'm sure I've offended some of the experts whose work I included, but I'm not beholden to them.

What do you think is most important for a person to know before selecting a fitness product? 
You really have to know what the overall approach is so you can tell if it's something you'll enjoy or can physically abide by, but that's hard to do without investing money and time. This guide gives readers a real idea of what it's like to be on these programs before they actually commit to the program. 

Which fitness product that you reviewed surprised you the most? 
Carb Back-loading. The idea that you could eat whole pizzas and ice cream and still lose fat and feel great blew my mind. It was even more amazing for me to discover firsthand that it's true.

What is the worst piece of nutrition and fitness advice you discovered while reviewing these products? 
Every product in the e-book is high quality. The challenge is finding which program is the one you'll stick with and commit to most. That said, some of the information is outdated or not optimal, and I call it out. For example, the idea that eating frequent small meals boosts the metabolism is an old myth.

What is the best piece of nutrition and fitness advice you discovered while reviewing these products? 
There are so many. There's the idea that crunches and sit-ups can injure your lower back, and you can get better-looking, stronger abs without them. Also, long, slow aerobic training has been demonized in recent years by trainers who say that interval training reigns supreme, but I learned that old-fashioned roadwork really is the bedrock of conditioning.

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