• The Vanilla Gorilla

Top 9 of 2018 (BOOKS)

Updated: Feb 26


These are my "TOP 9" for 2018 in books. Each has given me a little something in terms of my athletic pursuits.



If you're considering reading any of them, I seriously beg you to click the links below to purchase, so Amazon doesn't shut down my attempt at being an affiliate. Thanks...










#1 Peak Performance

This was hands-down my favorite book of the year. I even bought it as a hard cover after reading the kindle edition so I could write notes and have a quick reference. Stress + Rest = Growth. If you're serious about getting the most out of every day, then this is a good place to start.


#2 The Oxygen Advantage

Don't be a mouth breather, and other simple insights that are easily put into action. Not a bad start to a New Year.


#3 Endure: Mind, Body, and the Curiously Elastic Limits of Human Performance

I love learning what is possible. I love books like this because they make you feel like you can do more than you already do. When paired with a good book like Peak Performance, you can find a healthy balance of pushing the limits and recovery.


#4 The Obstacle is the Way

I enjoy stoic literature. I'm currently reading some of the classics, so expect those to show up on my 2019 list!


#5 What Doesn't Kill Us

So, I definitely enjoyed reading the book about Wim Hoff. I even bought an online course, but let me save you some trouble. The book is good, entertaining, and makes you think a bit. However, the online course is a little kooky for my tastes. I love hippies as much as the next girl, but it wasn't particularly helpful. Pair that with the fact that ritualistic ice-baths are interfering with your body's natural inflammation response and have now been scientifically proven to slow muscle growth; and you get a MO that isn't the best for athletes trying to optimize performance. That being said, there ARE times when ice baths are useful. This may turn out to be an entire post.. I have a lot to say. For now, read the book.


#6 The Rise of Superman

Another really good one that delves into the limits of human potential. I think you are capable of whatever you want to be capable of. So read this book. Go out and do epic shit.


#7 Born to Run

After hurting a few tendons and ligaments trying to run, I read this book. It makes me want to run more. Which may or may not be good... because I should be paddling.


#8 Let Your Mind Run

Stephanie Shiedler had this on a coffee table when I was couch surfing, and I delved in and devoured it. Books that just go into detail about what an athlete is thinking and when are not as common as "how to" mindset books. I personally enjoyed the thought stream and found it surprisingly motivating.


#9 Travels with Charlie in Search of America

Because not everything needs to be about sports-ing! I listened to this as an audiobook while driving across the country with Kaya. It spurred my hashtag #travelswithkayainsearchofamerica I thoroughly enjoyed the book, but parts made me sad. Because I couldn't do what he's doing. You can't just strike out in your van with your dog meeting new and interesting people then stopping to sleep when needed. Its not safe, cops harass you thinking you're homeless, everyone is such a shit-head really.



Don't forget to check out my #TOPNINE from 2017 by clicking HERE!!


Also, NEW!! My TOP 9 of 2019


99 views
  • Black Instagram Icon
  • Facebook Basic Black
  • Black YouTube Icon

© 2020 by VanillaGorilla Paddle Surf.