Wednesday, May 1, 2013

My Foot is Too Big for the Glass Slipper: Gabrielle Reece


My Foot is Too Big for the Glass Slipper: Gabrielle Reece

On an ordinary Saturday morning, I was beyond excited when this new book arrived on my doorstep.  My Foot is Too Big for the Glass Slipper: A Guide to the Less than Perfect Life is the second nonfiction book by volleyball icon, fitness expert, and devoted mother, friend, and wife: Gabrielle Reece.  The author also wrote an earlier book called Big Girl in the Middle, which I count as a favorite for inspiration on cultivating a hard work ethic with regard to lifestyle and fitness.  On a side note, Ms. Reece is married to surfing legend, Laird Hamilton, a fitness guru and proponent of healthy living. In my Northern Virginia hometown, I may have the local library record for the amount of times I have checked out his book, Force of Nature, which is sort of the key to his amazing philosophy on life, fitness/ exercise tips, and a glimpse into his healthy vibe.

 Being a lucky book blogger, I was able to read My Foot is Too Big for the Glass Slipper the day before its mainstream media release. (Note: I collect books the way many women collect shoes!)  First of all, I love the self depreciating and cheeky title which drew me in with its humor and honesty.  I proceeded to read the book in the span of two days and it scored off the charts on my meter of “unputdownable.”  I meant to review the book the next day but due to a full-time teaching career, motherhood, and graduate studies – the review would have to wait.  The book has so many positive messages and wonderful advice for the modern wife and mother.  My favorite theme is that of exercise. Ms. Reece is a preacher to my own cause and core philosophy that to feel good and be productive in life, some sort of exercise is imperative every day.  Reece writes, “Regular exercise is the secret to everything” (61) and “Its not only the natural cure for depression, but also deals out all those great endorphins, the world’s best high, natural or otherwise” (61).  As a runner, yoga enthusiast, and a lover of sports in general (mind you, this evolved later in life for me), this is one of the most important themes of this illuminating book.  I could spend volumes ruminating on the life changing and hugely beneficial aspects of exercise and getting out in nature on a daily basis. Studies show us that even a thirty minute daily walk can have enormous health benefits!

Reece shares a lot of personal anecdotes on marriage, childrearing, and the value of female friendship. Unfortunately, the mainstream media glommed on to one sentence she mentioned on keeping equilibrium in a relationship with ones husband by sometimes being “submissive.”  I hardly remember this portion of the book and it’s unfortunate that this became the spotlight topic in her interviews.  As a reader of the author’s earlier piece and being a huge fan of her husband’s book, I feel that their main message is too keep life natural, simple, filled with activity, and time spent on family.  Ms. Reece is not trying to sell a gimmick but kindly shares the intricacies of both the highs and lows of a lifestyle that works.  I loved this book (even though I was disappointed the author has only one vice: chocolate).  Overall, this is a fabulous book by a women who does not pretend to have it all and is brave enough to put her personal life choices out for the masses to chew on. Five big stars to My Foot is Too Big for the Glass Slipper! You will be wiser, more motivated, and possibly healthier and thinner for reading this fantastic book.

Make sure to read another favorite by Laird Hamilton: Inspiration on ocean life and surfing.