Matt Forney
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Work Out, Lose Weight and Stop Being Single by the Captain Power

work-out-lose-weight-stop-being-singleThis debut book from the Captain Power, a hybrid memoir/self-help title, is a book I can’t help but like in spite of its obvious flaws. Work Out, Lose Weight and Stop Being Single is chock-full of valuable info and is pretty entertaining on its own, enough so that I can overlook the book’s weak editing and poor organization.

It’s not a great book, but it’s good enough.

The premise of the book is kind of weird: it opens with the Captain talking about how he and his friends founded an underground bodybuilding society. Like Fight Club, but infinitely less interesting, mainly because while the Captain’s storytelling is good (and his stories are alternately hilarious, gross or mind-blowing), he doesn’t really explain why we should care about this secret society or view it as anything more than him and his buddies’ way of blowing off steam:

The movement basically started out from a real noble cause, it was guys discussing different ways to get cut, and the easiest ways to get laid. But from these humble beginnings we branched out like a genital wart infection of information. We started to discuss relationships, we started to discuss our careers, we cried, we shat, and most importantly we bonded. With good health being the head of the snake, we started applying our knowledge into all different areas of life.

Work Out is divided into just shy of two dozen chapters, each opening with an autobiographical segment by the Captain followed by a series of Internet/secret society articles that are supposed to be relevant to the chapter’s topic. I say “supposed” because half the time, the articles feel like they were cut and pasted at random to fill space. It’s not that they’re bad articles—most of the content in the book is helpful and funny—but there doesn’t seem to be any rhyme or reason to their inclusion. For example, Chapter 2, which explains how the Captain and his crew got together, ends with “Why I’m Glad I Don’t Have a Long Penis,” “‘Staying Home is a Disease, Avoid at All Costs,'” and “‘The Four Best Feelings Known to Mankind,'” which includes this trenchant factoid:

Diarrhea: Releasing diarrhea is by far the 2nd best feeling known to mankind. I’ve had diarrhea so bad in the past I was sweating, shaking, and almost keeled over. FACT: Diarrhea used to be a major cause of death. Get diarrhea out as fast as possible.

What exactly do these articles have to do with each other? What do they have to do with the chapter? It’s not like they’re from the earliest days of the underground society either, because the first one was written in July 2012 and the second was written in September 2007.

Work Out’s other major problem is that it reads like a first draft, with typos, punctuation errors and spelling mistakes everywhere. It’s far from the worst I’ve ever seen, but it’s still too unpolished for my liking. The Captain’s autobiographical segments aren’t as bad, but like I mentioned, the articles at the end of each chapter look like they were taken straight off of a forum without concern for how they’d look in a professional product:

My friend Ralph, who was a pretty husky guy, ran over to tackle the hot girl with the large breasts. She had just smacked him in the head with a pool float, and he was about to return the favor and sneak attack her. Ralph grabbed her from behind and lifted her off the ground into a reverse bear hug. I heard her screaming so I turned around, and while Al was squeezing her arms together, the pressure caused her two nipples to jump to the outside of the bikini. I was about 5 feet away from these juicy teenage nipples in my face.

What redeems Work Out is the sheer breadth and depth of information it contains. The Captain and company cover just about anything you’d want to know, from making money to getting laid to, naturally, getting cut. It’s not earthshattering, but there’s a lot of quality info here. The autobiographical portions are great too; while the Captain’s prose isn’t the flashiest, he’s a good enough storyteller to pull you in. It helps that he throws in a little suspense as well; the book moves from his past to his present as he relates the story of how he seduced a billionaire’s wife.

Simply put, if you’re a fan of memoirs about debauchery and sex and a fan of self-help books, Work Out is a decent edition to your collection, provided you’re willing to overlook its issues.

Click here to buy Work Out, Lose Weight and Stop Being Single.

Read Next: Anonymity is for Guys with Something to Lose

  • I second the ill-fitting posts, it dragged the book down a bit, enjoyable though.

  • Matt, thanks for the review : ) book#2 is in the works. Book 1 was like appetite for destruction, and book 2 will be polished like Use your Illusion….