The Rosary Workout
by Peggy Bowes
Bezalel Books, 2010
A former member of the Air Force, Peggy Bowes is a personal trainer, Spinning instructor and lifestyle and weight management consultant. In writing "The Rosary Workout," she sought to create "a plan that would help a person improve both physically and spiritually . . . an integrated approach to taking care of the body and soul." It is designed for people at all levels of physical and spiritual fitness and can be easily adapted to whatever stage one finds oneself.
Many people say the rosary while walking or jogging, but Bowes has truly developed a systematic workout plan incorporating both prayer and exercise. There are nine levels of progression in "The Rosary Workout," each named after one of the nine choirs of angels. "Each level is four weeks long and presents a different set of goals for both physical and spiritual fitness."
Bowes acknowledges that many people may never progress beyond the beginner levels in the fitness component (the first three levels), but we should all continue progressing on the spiritual level. She offers many helpful suggestions for maintaining discipline in both exercise and prayer. Perhaps the most important "helpful hint" is to ask for divine assistance in doing so. Another good suggestion is to keep a journal of both your physical and spiritual progress.
"The Rosary Workout" is easy to understand and offers much encouragement. If you are an Olympic-level athlete who prays three hours a day, you probably don't need this book. Everyone else will find benefit in it.
Reviewed by Patrice Fagnant-MacArthur