The 4-Hour Body: An Uncommon Guide to Rapid Fat-Loss, Incredible Sex, and Becoming Superhuman

The 4-Hour Body: An Uncommon Guide to Rapid Fat-Loss, Incredible Sex, and Becoming Superhuman

by Timothy Ferriss


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The New York Times bestselling author of The 4-Hour Workweek teaches you how to reach your peak physical potential with minimum effort.

Is it possible to:
• Reach your genetic potential in 6 months?
• Sleep 2 hours per day and perform better than on 8 hours?
• Lose more fat than a marathoner by bingeing?
Indeed, and much more. 

The 4-Hour Body is the result of an obsessive quest, spanning more than a decade, to hack the human body. It contains the collective wisdom of hundreds of elite athletes, dozens of MDs, and thousands of hours of jaw-dropping personal experimentation. From Olympic training centers to black-market laboratories, from Silicon Valley to South Africa, Tim Ferriss, the #1 New York Times bestselling author of The 4-Hour Workweek, fixated on one life-changing question:

For all things physical, what are the tiniest changes that produce the biggest results?

Thousands of tests later, this book contains the answers for both men and women. From the gym to the bedroom, it’s all here, and it all works.

You will learn (in less than 30 minutes each):

• How to lose those last 5-10 pounds (or 100+ pounds) with odd combinations of food and safe chemical cocktails
• How to prevent fat gain while bingeing (X-mas, holidays, weekends)
• How to increase fat-loss 300% with a few bags of ice
• How Tim gained 34 pounds of muscle in 28 days, without steroids, and in four hours of total gym time
• How to sleep 2 hours per day and feel fully rested
• How to produce 15-minute female orgasms
• How to triple testosterone and double sperm count
• How to go from running 5 kilometers to 50 kilometers in 12 weeks
• How to reverse “permanent” injuries
• How to add 150+ pounds to your lifts in 6 months
• How to pay for a beach vacation with one hospital visit
And that's just the tip of the iceberg. There are more than 50 topics covered, all with real-world experiments, many including more than 200 test subjects. You don't need better genetics or more discipline. You need immediate results that compel you to continue.

That’s exactly what The 4-Hour Body delivers.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780091939526
Publisher: Vermilion
Publication date: 02/28/2011
Pages: 567
Sales rank: 101,803
Product dimensions: 6.10(w) x 9.10(h) x 1.70(d)

About the Author

TIMOTHY FERRISS is a serial entrepreneur, #1 New York Times bestselling author, and angel investor/advisor (Facebook, Twitter, Evernote, Uber, and 20+ more).  Best known for his rapid-learning techniques, Tim's books — The 4-Hour Workweek, The 4-Hour Body, and The 4-Hour Chef — have been published in 30+ languages. The 4-Hour Workweek has spent seven years on The New York Times bestseller list. Tim has been featured by more than 100 media outlets including The New York Times, The Economist, TIME, Forbes, Fortune, Outside, NBC, CBS, ABC, Fox and CNN. He has guest lectured in entrepreneurship at Princeton University since 2003. His popular blog has 1M+ monthly readers, and his Twitter account @tferriss was selected by Mashable as one of only five “Must-Follow” accounts for entrepreneurs. Tim’s primetime TV show, The Tim Ferriss Experiment (, teaches rapid-learning techniques for helping viewers to produce seemingly superhuman results in minimum time.

Read an Excerpt


Excerpted from "The 4-Hour Body"
by .
Copyright © 2010 Timothy Ferriss.
Excerpted by permission of Penguin Random House Audio Publishing Group.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

Table of Contents

Start Here

T$inner, Bigger, Faster, Stronger? How to Use This Book 2

Fundamentals-First and Foremost

The Minimum Effective Dose: From Microwaves to Fat-loss 17

Rules That Change the Rules: Everything Popular Is Wrong 21

Ground Zero-Getting Started and Swaraj

The Harajuku Moment: The Decision to Become a Complete Human 36

Elusive Body Fat: Where Are You Really? 44

From Photos to Fear: Making Failure Impossible 58

Subtracting Fat


The Slow-carb Diet I: How to Lose 1.4 st (9kg) in 30 Days Without Exercise 70

The Slow-carb Diet II: The Finer Points and Common Questions 79

Damage Control: Preventing Fat Gain When You Binge 100

The Four Horsemen of Fat Loss: PAGG 114


Ice Age: Mastering Temperature to Manipulate Weight 122

The Glucose Switch: Beautiful Number 100 133

The Last Mile: Losing the Final 5-101b (2.3-4.5kg) 149

Adding Muscle

Building the Perfect Posterior (or Losing 7 + st/45 + kg) 158

Six-minute Abs: Two Exercises That Actually Work 174

From Geek to Freak: How to Gain 2.4st (15.4kg) in 28 Days 181

Occam's Protocol I: A Minimalist Approach to Mass 193

Occam's Protocol II: The Finer Points 214

Improving Sex

The 15-minute Female Orgasm-Part Un 226

The 15-minute Female Orgasm-Part Deux 237

Sex Machine I: Adventures in Tripling Testosterone 253

Happy Endings and Doubling Sperm Count 264

Perfecting Sleep

Engineering the Perfect Night's Sleep 275

Becoming Uberman: Sleeping Less with Polyphasic Sleep 287

Reversing Injuries

Reversing "Permanent" Injuries 294

How to Pay for a Beach Holiday with One Hospital Visit 319

Pre-hab: Injury-Proofing the Body 324

Running Faster and Farther

Hacking the NFL Combine I: Preliminaries-Jumping Higher 347

Hacking the NFL Combine II: Running Faster 354

Ultra-endurance I: Going from 5K (3 miles) to 50K (30 miles) in 12 Weeks-Phase I 367

Ultra-endurance II: Going from 5K (3 miles) to 50K (30 miles) in 12 Weeks-Phase II 386

Getting Stronger

Effortless Superhuman: Breaking World Records with Barry Ross 406

Eating the Elephant: How to Add 45 kg (100 lb) to Your Bench Press 424

From Swimming to Swinging

How I Learnt to Swim Effortlessly in 10 Days 434

The Architecture of Babe Ruth 444

On Longer and Better Life

Living Forever: Vaccines, Bleeding and Other Fun 454

Closing Thoughts

Closing Thoughts: The Trojan Horse 465

Appendices and Extras

Helpful Measurements and Conversions 470

Getting Tested-From Nutrients to Muscle Fibres 472

Muscles of the Body (Partial) 477

The Value of Self-experimentation 478

Spotting Bad Science 101: How Not to Trick Yourself 485

Spotting Bad Science 102: So You Have a Pill … 495

The Slow-carb Diet-194 People 499

Sex Machine II: Details and Dangers 505

The Meatless Machine I: Reasons to Try a Plant-based Diet for Two Weeks 514

The Meatless Machine II: A 28-Day Experiment 530

Bonus Material 545

Spot Reduction Revisited: Removing Stubborn Thigh Fat

Becoming Brad Pitt: Uses and Abuses of DNA

The China Study: A Well-intentioned Critique

Heavy Metal: Your Personal Toxin Map

The Top 10 Reasons Why BMI Is Bogus

Hyperclocking and Related Mischief: How to Increase Strength 10% in One Workout

Creativity on Demand: The Promises and Dangers of Smart Drugs

An Alternative to Dieting: The Body Fat Set Point and Tricking the Hypothalamus

Acknowledgements 547

Photo and Illustration Credits 549

Index 551

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

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The 4-Hour Body: An Uncommon Guide to Rapid Fat-Loss, Incredible Sex, and Becoming Superhuman 3.6 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 985 reviews.
Snowcrash1984 More than 1 year ago
I was massively disappointed in this book. I have found enough errors and half truths in the book that I would have to view everything else written in the book as suspect. "Facts" like an hour on a stairmaster only burning 7 calories more than an hour watching TV... that just isn't possible. But the thing that really killed the book for me was using Dave Palumbo as a muscle mass building example. The guy went from 140lbs to 310lbs. Tim gives us a detailed account of his diet. WOW! GREAT! But oops! Tim forgets to make any mention of the fact that this guy also got busted for trafficking human growth hormone a few years ago. (just google "Dave Palumbo arrested") Secretely using human growth hormone (like Palumbo) to bulk, then telling me about your diet so I can bulk like you is a lie. Now regardless of how you feel about the use of illegal substances, I feel like the whole example in Tim's book is basically a fraud when he leaves out that part of the story. So how many of his other fantastic tales are tainted in such a way? Later in the book Tim discusses Ben Johnson the Canadian sprinter, he talks all about how his brilliant coach trained him in ways that maximized his recovery... again no mention of the controlled substances infamously involved that got Ben Johnson's Olympic gold medal revoked. If Tim Ferris wants to promote controlled substances that is one thing, but if he wants to brag about their results, BUT NOT MENTION THAT DRUGS WERE INVOLVED, that is just fraud. If the book at least seemed factual I could forgive the nauseating amount of product promotion within the text. It even contains convenient web links to where we can buy all these gizmos and supplements that we supposedly need to achieve his amazing results. How much did these companies pay for this type of product placement? Again, if you want to use a controlled substance to train, that is your business. But then don't turn around and try and sell me all the other products promoted in this book and tell me that is how you got your results. After reading this book I can't help but think that Tim is laughing all the way to the bank.
Jason_Cai More than 1 year ago
I enjoyed the book. I'm not going to claim that the book is perfect or earth-shattering or anything like that. I did find it entertaining to read all the stuff Tim Ferriss put himself through. I've also benefited from some of his recommendations (though not all). My biggest criticism is the book didn't do enough with the mind part. For that, you might want to read "Emotional Intelligence 2.0". That book did a great deal for my mind. For The 4-Hour Body, here's what's in the book so you can make your own decision. I've read all 571 pages and tried most of the strategies (I had my copy for a while because I got my hands on an advanced copy). Ferriss spent more than a decade researching, monitoring, and noting the progress of his own mind and body. He served as his own laboratory genea pig and also played the role of a doctor, physical therapist, and coach to prepare for this book. Like a school boy, Ferris teaches you how to get your classwork done fast so you can go out and play. He asks you to be skeptical of the book and try only that which you think will help you. Chapter 1: Fundamentals--First And Foremost Chapter 2: Ground Zero--Getting Started and Swaraj Chapter 3: Subtracting Fat Chapter 4: Adding Muscle Chapter 5: Improving Sex Chapter 6: Perfecting Sleep Chapter 7: Reversing Injuries Chapter 8: Running Faster and Farther Chapter 9: Getting Stronger Chapter 10: From Swimming to Swinging Chapter 11: On Longer and Better Life
kegger999 More than 1 year ago
First, to address those who suggest Tim Ferriss and/or people in his circle are manufacturing the 5 star reviews: I have read his other book and most of his blog and, frankly, it wouldn't surprise me if this was true. I mean, the guy has won awards for shameless self-promotion - draw your own conclusion. As for the book itself - I thought it was pretty interesting. I have not tried any of the methods in the book, but I plan to try a few of them out before I make a hard judgment of the book. I have read a ton of books on body design and fitness, and this one has quite a few tricks I have not heard before. One downside I see is the emphasis on supplementation, but Ferriss is known for always looking for the extreme shortcut that produces results, so I wasn't too surprised. His methodology centers on this concept of the smallest change that produces the max results which leaves very little wiggle room in most of the methods. One tip: DO AS THE BOOK SAYS AND DON'T READ IT ALL THE WAY THROUGH. I did this - big mistake. You really have to pick and choose your goals and only read the applicable info, otherwise you will be extremely confused and the book will seem to contradict itself over and over. If you just read the chapters that apply to what you want to get out of it then you should be ok. Is this the end-all-be-all body design book? I don't know, but it's worth a read. I'm gonna give some of the chapters a shot and see what happens.
maycausefatigue More than 1 year ago
Yes, a lot of the ideas in this book are extreme. The core diet plan itself is centered around a pretty limiting diet 6 days a week + 1 cheat day where you can go as crazy as you like (as long as you prepare with the right supplements and exercises). Yet Ferriss has documented extraordinary results in 30 days by implementing his methods to a "T". Reading this book changed my perspective. I came away with a whole new strategy for losing 20 lbs and the idea that weight loss doesn't have to take a lifetime nor do traditional methods always get the job done best. If you have tried dieting, long workouts, or maybe are just tired of lackluster results, this book can be the swift kick in the pants you need to jumpstart your journey to an amazing body. Please note that I bought the ereader version of this book to read on my mac (I do not own a nook) and am having problems with the images not showing up. The images are a key part of the book, therefore if you plan on reading this book on your mac, I suggest purchasing a hardcopy as I've been back and forth with BN customer service 3 times to no avail.
Colleen33 More than 1 year ago
I really appreciate this book. I enjoy Timothy Ferriss' writing and sense of humor.  I am impressed with the knowledge that he has & shares.  As weight gain comes very easily on my body,  I have been on food diets for almost 30 years now. I have been living Tim Ferriss' suggested slow carb life style for 3 months now and I have maintained my ideal weight without the calorie counting.  I enjoy feeling well in my body and light in my step. This is a great book that I refer to over and over again.  Other books I  refer to repeatedly again and again are any and all books by authors Ariel & Shya Kane.  Their books produce well being in my life that I could have never imagined. Check out their books "Working On Yourself Doesn't Work" and "How to Have A Match Made in Heaven". Books by Ferriss and the Kanes provide well-being inside & out!
lemme14 More than 1 year ago
I really can't understand the quantity of positive reviews. Something just seems fishy regarding that, though I have no proof, only doubts. Maybe there is something to Tim's research, but in my opinion, most of his success probably just comes down to genetics. I should have learned when I bought the 4-Hour Workweek. The concept seemed great. The first few pages were very interesting. Then it just fell apart and wasn't practical for a lot of people. I lost interested when he started talking about weighting his own "poo" to prove a point on his binge day. Truth be told, there is some good information in this book. Part of the reason I got it is that I consider myself a sponge when it comes to fitness and nutrition. In the end, the book could have had all the relevant nutritional information condensed into about 75 pages, and the info in those pages has already been published ad nauseum. The strength training section is worthless.
radbookie More than 1 year ago
Sure it made me chuckle a couple of times, but overall I thought this book sucked. I can't keep all of the supplements straight that he recommends. I'm still confused on what is the overall point of this book. It would have been helpful to have some kind of chart or example of a typical day that summarizes all of the crap he recommends you take (pills, special teas, etc). I think he tried too hard to add validity in what he was saying. You can call me prude - but I thought it was unnecessary to swear throughout the book. You can still make a valid point without throwing the F word in. Just takes away what little credibility there may have been. I thought this book was geared more towards men and/or body-builder types. Not something for an average person trying to lose weight. Better luck next time. I don't recommend this book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I've only made a couple of changes and in 7 days have lost 5 pounds. It has motivated me to make more changes and I'm actually looking forward to exercising. The philosphy is make the smallest change with the most impact. Tons of great information.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I am loved this book its great! You should read it.dont listen to those clowns that say its not good.listen to me.
marcuslk More than 1 year ago
This book may have some benefits if you can stand to read through tons of rambling and very boring statistical garbage . It is like reading scientific case studies . Way too much useless info to try and imprss you or inform you of hings tht are not going to help you one bit . Getting to the " how to " is a real chore . If you enjoy reading clinical trial data then perhaps this is for you .
KJNJ More than 1 year ago
First of all , this guy is suggesting tons supplements (ECA stack or whatever it was) ice packs to you neck, very specific diet, binging on your off day requires much planning. I am so frustrated reading this book its all over the place this guy totally sounds like a scam artist. Also the title of the book suggests this is going to be easy and I have been watching my weight for a while now and its not that easy but his method is harder than what I am doing now. Ridiculous regret buying this book.
Murryz More than 1 year ago
Why re-invent the wheel ? Well why not ? So many of us live our lives based on what we see all around us thinking well if it works for them it will work for me. We rarely pause to reconsider the options and create a better path to achieve what we need or want. Timothy Ferris has a talent for looking at a problem and then goes out of the box ......way out of the box. Although this might make you feel uncomfortable while you read my review i assure you he is logical , insightful and writes in a clear concise manner. Your body is the only ticket you get to this world and it is best to take good care of it. Mr. Ferris will guide you in creating new solutions for yourself and inspire you to consider fresh alternatives in all aspects of your life. I have read his other works and blog and find him an easy read informative and just about brilliant.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
It is helpful workout book presented in a quasi scientific manner (e.g. minimal effective dose) and somewhat interesting. But it is much hyped, overrated and incomplete. Tim Ferriss tells you how to run an ultra-marathon but has yet to run one himself. As far as the contradictions other reviews mentioned, I did not find to many having read the book the way it was intended. Which is to read just the parts related to you. But, having heard interviews with Tim Ferriss I was under the impression that he is 100% against dairy products expect cottage cheese. However, in the "From Geek to Freak" he suggest drinking a liter of milk per day. I think he was just hawking his slow-carb diet which has larger audience. So this is one possible contradiction and could lead to some confusion. Overall, the book is somewhat helpful but not worth buying.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
BijouBoy More than 1 year ago
Interesting book. Useful as a training guide. as long as set realistic expectations for yourself.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Not sure I agree with all that he says but definitely worth reading and understanding many of his theories about Health & Fitness.
dsmoody23 More than 1 year ago
The overall message of this book is worth the read, even if the chapters are lacking in a number of aspects. The scientific data is poorly interpreted and provides almost none of the evidence Feriss suggests that it does. The case studies he presents are individual outliers that are not backed up by any documented data trend. His attempts to explain his 'findings' with biochemistry are completely ridiculous, and I'm fairly certain he doesn't know what 80% of the terms he uses actually mean. But, the theme of the book, which is carried by Feriss and his palpable enthusiasm for self improvement, is still valuable. I was motivated by this book to do some real experimentation and improvement, based on his premise that our bodies are substantially within our control, if you can work out the formulas. Again, despite its faults, worth reading.
readrgrl More than 1 year ago
Pretty great book. So much information to get exactly what you want quick! Quick results with as many or little details as you wish to read. Everything from losing weight to gaining muscle mass. Highly recommend. Tim takes the time to put himself through so many unbelievable experiments its awesome he's done all the work for us. You only read the chapters pertaining to the area you'd like to work on: lose weight, gain muscle, run faster, etc. He goes into areas of intense detail (which may be a little over the top for some) so you can skip that part and just read what pertains to you. The good thing is it explains a lot. I found myself highlighting many chapters of this book for further recall.
NotReallyHere More than 1 year ago
Do a little searching on the Internet and all of this information and more is available for free. I've read much of his work and heard Ferriss speak, and he is good at it. In the end he strikes me as a used cars salesman. Nothing new but he'll make make a great pitch making you think you are getting the deal of the century.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book is many pages, but you won't have to read all of it (probably most people won't read the sections on baseball, etc). The diet section is basically the same as what's on the blog (but unlike the paleo post on the blog it doesn't say much that beans/legumes can be estrogenic, have anti-nutrients, and contain enzyme inhibitors/Lectins, so therefore I personally don't eat many beans/legumes and I usually replace them with almond butter or something else, plus I think myself and most in shape people can early in the day eat 1-3 pieces of fruit on some days at least after a few weeks of the diet to make sure we don't enter ketosis/have some carbs for digesting protein, brain and muscle function, and for vitamins). There is some strange things in the book (the picture of the dog) that hopefully is a typo. If you take notes and then apply a few things then you will get something beneficial out of this very interesting book. For me the section on intimacy and some of the links in various chapters were more than worth the price of the book. The 4-Hour Body is more than a book because there is a bunch of things you can take action on and DO in many areas of your real life, especially with nutrition and exercises. Also, I just got the OneTaste DVD and it is not explicit (it does not show the female anatomy having the technique that's shown in the book performed on a real woman), as it only has good looking people mostly talking and only a few on screen drawings, thus I did not learn anything more from this high quality production DVD than I already had from the "The 4-Hour Body," thus the DVD is "couples-friendly" and may be useful for conversations between partners, but as for the actual "Doing" technique the DVD drawings don't show much more than the pictures already in "The 4-Hour Body" book.
librisissimo on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Lots of verbiage but boils down to these five rules: #1 - no white carbs (veg OK); #2 - eat the same meals over and over (predictable and satisfying; protein, legumes, and veg only); #3 - don't drink calories (no dairy either); #4 - don't eat fruit (except avocados and tomatoes); #5 - take one day off per week and binge (on a regular schedule).Also, measure inches not poulds (thighs, hip, waist).
06nwingert on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
The 4 Hour Body is the latest craze of diet/fitness/nutrition books. I enjoyed reading Ferriss' take on such important issues; his writing style is easy-to-understand and the book is filled with pictures and graphs that accompany the text.However, my main qualm with the book is this: Ferriss admits point-blank that he's not a doctor nor does he own a PhD in nutrition, physiology, kinesology or related fields; he's just a regular guy. This means that readers should be skeptical of his claims. What worked for him might not work for others. He exemplifies this concept when he states that you should aviod fruit if you want to lose weight or gain muscle. Fruit has sugar (albiet natural, not fake sugar), which you should not have if you want to gain muscle or lose weight. The problem with this statement, however, is that NO professional doctor in his or her right mind would ever say "Don't eat fruit." You're missing out a a plethora of essential vitamins and minerals if you aviod fruit such as vitamin C (strawberries and kiwi) and potassium (bananas).
JimRPh62 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I've read the diet and nutrition sections so far. It's fairly easy to read. The information does seem to be accurate and along the forefront of todays fitness methodology. The nutritional supplement information is very intriguing and I intend to give it a try. The information could be summarized more clearly, but a second reading while taking notes made up for any deficiency. The little fitness info I've read so far, also seems valid and sensible. I intend to revise my review after I've actually tried following the diet and exercise plans for myself.
Audacity88 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Ferriss's enthusiasm and willingness to self-experiment provide him with plenty of interesting and useful material to discuss. Unfortunately, his naiveté and tendency towards self-deification make him a rather untrustworthy guide. Still, if you can avoid throwing away the wheat with the chaff, there's plenty of ideas in 4HB that are at least worth trying. So while I dislike the cult of Ferriss, I have to admit that this can be a pretty useful book, if taken with a pretty big hunk of NaCl.
libraryhead on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Tim Ferriss is clearly crazy, but apparently it's the type of crazy that works for me. I appreciated his unconventional take on diet and fitness, although many of the specific prescriptions fell a little flat. The diet meals he recommends are completely disgusting, for one thing, and the exercise plans and how-tos are mostly incomprehensible. (I skipped much of the "how to be a better athlete" material.)My takeaways: 1) strategies geared toward losing *weight* will not get you to a better body; what you want is to bring the ratio of fat and muscle into the desired range; 2) competitive bodybuilders do a lot of unhealthy stuff, but they also have the experience of *effective* strategies for losing fat and gaining muscle -- they know what works, and it's worth listening to what they have to say (they also believe a lot of pseudoscientific hoo-ha sometimes, so, grain of salt); 3) working toward a better body does not have to be all guilt-ridden deprivation; there is virtue in doing the minimum necessary to achieve results; 4) hack it, try something, and track your results.Specifically, he recommends low-carb, high-protein diets for fat loss, kettlebells and other full-body strength-training techniques with ample recovery time for muscle building, and selected use of supplements and pharmaceuticals depending on your needs.After this and 4-Hour Workweek, it will be interesting to see what Ferriss takes on next: The 4-Hour Relationship?