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Summary

What Doesn't Kill Us, a New York Times best seller, traces our evolutionary journey back to a time when survival depended on how well we adapted to the environment around us.

Our ancestors crossed deserts, mountains, and oceans without even a whisper of what anyone today might consider modern technology. Those feats of endurance now seem impossible in an age where we take comfort for granted. But what if we could regain some of our lost evolutionary strength by simulating the environmental conditions of our forbears?

Investigative journalist and anthropologist Scott Carney takes up the challenge to find out: Can we hack our bodies and use the environment to stimulate our inner biology? Helping him in his search for the answers is Dutch fitness guru Wim Hof, whose ability to control his body temperature in extreme cold has sparked a whirlwind of scientific study. Carney also enlists input from an army scientist, a world-famous surfer, the founders of an obstacle course race movement, and ordinary people who have documented how they have cured autoimmune diseases, lost weight, and reversed diabetes. In the process he chronicles his own transformational journey as he pushes his body and mind to the edge of endurance, a quest that culminates in a record-bending 28-hour climb to the snowy peak of Mt. Kilimanjaro wearing nothing but a pair of running shorts and sneakers.

An ambitious blend of investigative reporting and participatory journalism, What Doesn't Kill Us explores the true connection between the mind and the body and reveals the science that allows us to push past our perceived limitations.

©2017 Scott Carney (P)2017 Scott Carney

What members say

Average customer ratings

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars

10% interesting 90% padding

didn't really glean anything from this. the VICE video on Wim Hof online gives you everything you need to know. this book is filled with unnecessary filler to bulk it out into a book.

8 of 8 people found this review helpful

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  • Jens
  • Charlottenlund, Denmark
  • 24-01-17

Great story meets self development

Wonderful hole hearted story about Scott's journey with Wim Hof's method, endurance trials, meetings and experiments with world class athletes. Scott also knows his physiological science. I just loved the detailed descriptions of events and the personalities. Wish there was more chapters. Don't buy if you are in a hurry just to learn the methods. Must be enjoyed like chocolate - slowly. This is one of my favorite self growth books ever.

3 of 4 people found this review helpful

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Great listen

I bought the kindle version but upgraded to audiable. Very good listen. A great insight into Wim Hof, his method & pushing yourself to the very edge. Will listen again for sure. Thanks

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Life changing!

Wonderful that this was narrated by the author. Gripping and inspiring. Listened in two straight days and am just about to listen again. Have started the breathing and cold showers and am fighting my cold phobia, think I will win. If you want to truly understand Wim Hof and humanity’s need to return to nature listen to this! Thanks Scott!

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Very interesting read/listen

Much of the book is about the Wim Hof method and Scott's experience with meeting and training with him personally. I really like books which are read by the author, it adds a level of authenticity which is hard to replicate. This book did not disspoint.

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A little too self-focused to be truly useful

I have recently discovered Wim Hof and think what he teaches is incredibly interesting and can no doubt be life changing. With the author’s pedigree and the tag line of this book I thought would mean quite a subjective and wide-ranging look at the science behind this ‘method’ and way of thinking about breathing/cold exposure/meditation. Whilst I very much enjoyed the book, the author I think fell victim to his own sense of importance in the equation with the effect that many times in the book it felt like he was trying to aggrandize himself to perhaps share in some of Wim Hof’s fame. Do I really care that Orlando Bloom was training in a pool with other celebrities - absolutely not - who cares he is nobody special. Its like telling a story where you start by giving the nationalities or religious persuasion of the people involved when it has ABSOLUTELY nothing to do with the story.
I wish there had been more real accounts from practionners of the method, with their high and low stories which would then help the reader to be able to form a more well-rounded opinion.
That said it was certainly worth the read and was very enjoyable overall.

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bit long winded in parts

I'm keen on learning more about the Wim Hoff method and this book has made me more interested in his control of breath to help with health,

Scott Carney tells his own story on the method and I felt he was trying to fill the book with random stories at points , but a good insight to what can be achieved using the method and various other adaptions he mentions.

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Thought provoking...

Wow! This book is a well written piece of investigative journalism. For me this book was the perfect stepping stone into discovery of the Wim Hof Method, it is about the why, not the how...

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A Cold Awakening!

Very well narrated. I had no idea about the benefits of the cold! I also found the constant thread about being connected to our environment rather enlightening. I have since taken up cold showers and training institute diverse weather conditions and believe I am better for it. A definite must read/listen to again!

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Just what the doctors should order.

The Wim Hof Method has cried out for just this book and Scott Carney heard the cry. That Wim is rewriting the science of optimum human performance should have him even more of a household name. This excellently written book provides a sound evidence base from which many will springboard into exploring all things Hof, to their lifelong benefit. Buy it, read it, and Breathe M*therf*r!

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  • C. Toering
  • 22-02-17

Awesome book

What did you love best about What Doesn't Kill Us?

I'd heard of Wim Hof already however, I realized that Scott Carney used Hoff as an anchoring idea to then launch off in a number of different directions around the idea of tempering your body/mind to endure discomfort.

What was one of the most memorable moments of What Doesn't Kill Us?

The trek up Kilmanjaro was a very memorable chapter. I won't spoil the story but suffice it to say it was a very human moment to realize that even 'hero's' have ego's and are prone to being self centered.

Have you listened to any of Scott Carney’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

No.

Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

No but it has made me intensely interested in learning more. I appreciated the fact that Scott showed that a regular guy can put these ideas and techniques to use and have some significant benefit.

Any additional comments?

There are a host of podcast episodes out there on Wim Hof, Brian Mackenzie, and Laird Hamilton among others. More than enough fodder for someone interested in learning more.

35 of 36 people found this review helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 14-01-17

Entertaining and Inspiring

Loved this

Listened to the whole thing in 3 days of house painting. Scott connects the dots between methods taught by Wim Hoff and some of the most inspiring athletes and teachers in the health and fitness space. He brings his humble character to make this incredible journey accessible to the rest of us mortals and dispels his own healthy scepticism.

it is an intelligent exploration into reclaiming the innate capacity within an ordinary human that put his life on the line.

Thank You Scott.

26 of 29 people found this review helpful

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  • Keith
  • 26-01-17

Inspirational!!

The structure of the storyline of this book made the point of how beneficial mastery of specific physical and mental techniques are to achieve a robust physical capacity without a major time commitment. I am convinced and perhaps seduced. Well done

17 of 20 people found this review helpful

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  • Jason R. Craft
  • 18-02-17

correlation is not causation

I checked out this book Because of its introduction to Colf therapy for personal development: physically, mentally, emotionally, and as an immune suppressant or autoimmune conditions. It is an excellent introduction to those things along with an ongoing narrative. It is based on evolutionary theory which I'm willing to listen to and consider Arguments for but give me good science and don't talk about science that you don't really understand. I do teach biology and some Liberties were taken in connecting biological processes to assumed evolutionary origins of those processes. In addition, I was not interested in the authors connection to Evolution and global climate change. That's not what this book was about. I can buy and read books about that. Stay on topic. Because two things appear to be happening at the same time does not mean one caused the other, correlation is not necessarily causation. It is false logic to assume that because things are happening at the same time that one must have caused the other. Provide evidence if you're going to make that assertion rather than assuming I'm going to agree with that conclusion. The author introduces us to several good programs related to cold Therapy and Fitness in general. I'll probably listen to it again because I now own it on audio. But, the topic wondering does not rate the full five stars.

96 of 118 people found this review helpful

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  • William E. Morgan
  • 30-03-17

Weak science with narrative

This story is supported by weak evidence and essentially is a narrative of the authors journey to changing his physiology and him climbing Mount Kilimanjaro. Here is the jest of the book: breathing more elevates your oxygen saturation, exposure to cold burns more kilocalories and provokes your body to create more mitochondria.

49 of 60 people found this review helpful

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  • Utilisateur anonyme
  • 30-11-17

Good listen

New to the theme? then your in for a treat.

If you are fully aware of WIM HOF, and coldwater treatment etc.. then this wil be slightly boring, especially the last 5 chapters. theres some cool history in here, talking about different wars, and how climatization were a critical factor.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • C. Andrews
  • 17-01-17

Excellent book!

I really enjoyed the book and clarity at which the author read it. This book was the validation that I was looking for after reading and listening to many sources on cold exposure and focused breathing. I had an expectation based on listening to an interview with the author before purchasing. My expectations were exceeded with the product. Well done.

15 of 18 people found this review helpful

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  • Angela
  • 06-02-17

Amazing and it works!

Great book. Great method. I've started cold therapy and breathing meditation and without hesitation can confirm that something is definitely at work. I feel more alert, have lost weight, and have increased work capacity. I'll be listening again and recommending this book and Wim Hof method to anyone that will listen.

16 of 20 people found this review helpful

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  • J. Ogle
  • 22-06-17

Revelatory

A balanced and entertaining look at heightening the capabilities of your body in a completely different way.

8 of 10 people found this review helpful

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  • J. Nomega
  • 04-05-17

Wow!

All I can say is wow book was amazing love the story I've already started doing some of the breathing techniques!

4 of 5 people found this review helpful