I’m a bookworm. There is literally nothing I like doing more than closing the world out and getting lost in a good book. Fiction or non-fiction, it doesn’t matter. I love them all. I have stacks of books I’ve bought but not yet read on my bedside table, and my Amazon wish list is pages and pages long. But whenever I see those “best book” lists that most blogs and magazines publish, I find countless more books I want to read.
So, in that spirit, we surveyed our team to come up with a list of our favorite books of the summer. My hope is that you’ll find something on here to interest you too.
Derek McLaughlin- Member Advocate
Becoming a Supple Leopard, by Dr. Kelly Starrett
This book goes into ridiculous detail about the body, how it works, and how to “move” correctly to avoid injury and stay healthy and strong. Sounds like a weird one, but it’s clutch for CrossFitters and athletes in general! [clearfix]
Alan Legleiter- Software Developer
A Confederacy of Dunces, by John Kennedy Toole
The story starts off slow, and it is hard to like the main character at first. But the book becomes one long joke and is the funniest book I have ever read. I would say in all likelihood the funniest book to win the Pulitzer Prize. The entire story takes place in New Orleans, and it captures so much of such a unique city. There is a statue in front of the department store where the book begins in New Orleans. (Shown in photo)[clearfix]
Hannah Tatum- Member Advocate
A Steady Running of the Hour, by Justin Go
You know you’ve read a good book when the moment you turn the last page you wish you could still be on the first, and this book does that to you. It’s an adventure/mystery, historical-fiction travel narrative about a mountaineer who leaves his huge inheritance to climb Everest. I loved it because it moves back and forth through the span of 100 years and shows that exploring the world and following your passions is a timeless experience for all humans. It was also a mystery, which made me not want to put the book down until it was finished.[clearfix]
Jeff Gardner- Chief Executive Officer
Think and Grow Rich, by Napoleon Hill
Awful title, amazing book. Summed up by Henry Ford. If you think you can, you’re right. If you think you can’t, you’re right. The power of positive thinking is immense.[clearfix]
Dennie McGarry- VP Sales
The Inevitable You: Live Life by Design, by William Sumner
This is a great book, and one you want to read in little bites. I am reading it and then applying it daily, and I really appreciate what I’m getting out of it.[clearfix]
Nicole Kennedy- Controller
10% Happier, by Dan Harris
I am LOVING this one.
Why? I suffer from self-inflicted “road runner brain”…always going a million miles a minute thinking about everything I need to get done at work and home. This book helps explain some tactics behind meditation and mindfulness that are easy to connect to without having extensively studied Buddhism. Harris has a great way of writing that helps you relate to him, his life, and his journey. It’s like he took all the questions I had about meditation, did the research for me, and presented it in a way that I can completely relate to…can’t beat that! It won’t solve your problems, but if you employ some of his techniques, you can be 10% happier.[clearfix]
Christina Von Stroh- Director of Product Management
Conscious Capitalism: Liberating the Heroic Spirit of Business, by John Mackey and Raj Sisodia
In this book, John Mackey (founder and CEO of Whole Foods) counters the myth that to be successful a business must focus primarily on creating profits for shareholders. His premise is that truly conscious companies (those who are focused on their higher purpose, and doing right by all stakeholders, including customers, employees and suppliers, in addition to shareholders) are actually more successful and profitable in the long run. This book resonated strongly with me as I was preparing to join Zen Planner, as this is clearly in alignment with our OHANA values and reinforces why this is such a great company.[clearfix]
Cole Dillon- Member Advocate
The Rise of Theodore Roosevelt, by Edmund Morris
This is a fascinating book that highlights Roosevelt’s greatest achievements and his amazing character. Since I love hiking and camping, I’m especially interested in learning about his contribution to our National Parks.[clearfix]
Brian Lucyk- Chief Operations Officer
Great by Choice, by Jim Collins
This book is always a favorite because it highlights the foundation of how to make a company a truly great company. Collins proposes a structured approach for operating principles and the “20 Mile March,” while keeping the book interesting and easy to read. Definitely one of my touchstones for how I set my own priorities.[clearfix]
Tracy Stevens- Sales Superstar
10% Happier, by Dan Harris (Yes, this one is so awesome it was recommended twice!)
I read a lot, but this book stands out as the best book of the summer. I say that because it wasn’t written by some enlightened guru who has it all figured out. He is just a regular highly skeptical guy with plenty of challenges. When he meditated his life became easier and better. Who doesn’t want that? All the years I read about meditators and dabbled in it a bit haven’t really done much for me because my time and commitment weren’t there. This book changed that for me. It’s coming at a perfect time as work is more demanding and I now have a teenager in my house.[clearfix]
Shilo Lucyk- Marketing Campaign Manager
Winds of War & War and Remembrance, by Herman Wouk
Right now, my favorite books are those that tell a great story but also allow me to learn something. These two books do just that, and yes, I’m picking two. They are a two-book set that tells a story of an American family during the Second World War. This very long story captures you immediately and takes you from the beginning of the conflict in Europe all the way to the end of the war, after the bombings in Japan. While this might not sound like an engaging read, it really is. I recommend it to anyone who’s looking for a story that will stay with you long after you’ve closed the book.[clearfix]
We’d love to hear about your favorite books too, so please don’t be shy. Tell us about them in the comment section below.
Check out our latest eBook, Fitness Business Management Time Traps to Avoid. This guide will help you identify which tasks are taking up too much of your time, how to avoid these traps in the future and, most importantly, how creating efficiencies can help you better build relationships with your members.
Zen Planner is a management and billing software for boutique fitness businesses.
We help gym, school, and studio owners streamline their day-to-day tasks so they can get back to doing what they love — helping their members. Enjoy all the features you need to manage your fitness business, including robust reporting dashboards, automated payment processing, skills and belt tracking, attendance history, and online retail.