This classic shot of Vince Gironda, the legendary Iron Guru, was taken way back in the 1950s. His aesthetic physique, with its symmetry, lines, and rippedness, holds up today. Yep, even now most guys would kill to walk down the beach looking like Vince… [Read more…]
Q: You guys have so many different programs and mass tactics. Should I just pick a routine I like, do it for five weeks, then pick another? For example, I’m thinking about using 4X Mass Workout. Then I could go to Power-Density. Thoughts?
A: That can work very well. As we always say, change to gain. But when we say that, we are primarily talking about tactics, not exercises…[Read more…]
Vince Gironda was the Iron Guru, a bodybuilding legend ahead of his time. Ask anyone who knew him and trained at his famous Vince’s Gym in Studio City, California, and they would say Vince was a sheer genius when it came to building muscle. (They would also say he was one of the most bombastic, outspoken S.O.B.s around–LOL!)
His most famous pupil in the bodybuilding world was the very first Mr. Olympia Larry Scott, who overcame many genetic flaws to make it to the top, thanks to Vince. The Iron Guru also trained many Hollywood stars back in the day, like Clint Eastwood, and even Arnold consulted with him and was a fan (even though Vince told Arnold that he was a “fat fuck” when he first arrived in the U.S.).[Read more…]
Q: I’ve been intrigued by your explanation of workout density being the reason your 10×10 program builds mass. Do you think that’s the reason drop sets are also so effective?
A: Workout density is Vince Gironda’s term to express getting more work done in a given time frame. For example, most trainees do a set, rest for two to three minutes, do another set, and so on. In 10 minutes you only do two or three sets…[Read more…]
Q: Broad shoulders get girls’ attention, but mine are narrow. And on top of that, my delts are flat. Should I do more presses to round them out? I notice in 3D Muscle Building that you have presses as more of a front-delt midrange exercise. Aren’t they good for side delts, too? BTW, I love 4X mass method and am using it almost exclusively.
A: Overhead presses primarily train the front-delt heads. Plus, they can impinge the shoulder capsule if performed incorrectly. That’s why we generally suggest doing them at the end of our delt routine. A good Positions-of-Flexion full-range shoulder hit, 4X style on every move, would be…[Read more…]
Q: I really like the 4X mass method with all sets X-centric as a one-workout shocker as you’ve recommended before. You’ve also talked about 10×10, which I’ve made great gains with before, but how about the old 8×8 method that Vince Gironda used to pack muscle on his pupils with.
A: We actually discuss Vince and his 8×8 method in the very first chapter of The Ultimate 10×10 Mass Workout e-book. It’s a great method, but you need to heed Vince’s advice if you use it…[Read more…]
Q: I get depressed when I read the bodybuilding magazines I’ve been handed down from my uncle. I’m 19 and weigh 185 with abs, but I see that the pro bodybuilders weigh anywhere from 250 to 280 pounds, and that’s at 3 percent bodyfat. I don’t want to take steroids, but it seems like that’s the only way to get impressive development, right?
A: If you’re looking for us to give you the okay to take drugs, you’re barking up the wrong tree. We love bodybuilding (the lifestyle, not necessarily the competitions); however, resorting to steroids to get an “impressive,” extremely muscular physique is not mandatory. Look at this shot of Jonathan…[Read more…]
Q: Your 4X mass method has 35 to 45 seconds rest between sets. I’ve seen research that longer rests between sets can be better for strength and muscle growth. What’s your take on that?
A: Legendary trainer Vince Gironda, the Iron Guru who trained Mr. Olympias as well as Hollywood stars to build muscle fast, first got us into reducing rest between sets for muscle growth—he called it Density Training…[Read more…]
Q: I just got the Vince Gironda Legend & Myth anthology. Incredible info, but I’m wondering a few things. His drag curls and diver cable rows are cool exercises, but how do they fit into your Positions-of-Flexion system? Drag curls are similar to standing barbell curls, but you pull the bar up next to your body to your lower pecs, so the poundage is fairly low. Is it still a good midrange exercise?
A: Vince’s drag curl is similar to a regular barbell curl, but you keep the bar in contact with your body all the way up, so it’s much more isolated. And at the top, when the bar is at your lower chest line, your upper arms are more in a position that’s like the top of an incline curl, a stretch-position exercise. Now you’re probably really confused. LOL!
Q: I’m super impressed! I’ve been on the Size Surge workout for four weeks, and I’ve gained 7 pounds. My shirts are tighter with no increase in my waist, so it seems to be all muscle. The program calls for a back-off, or low-intensity, week between the two training phases. Is that really necessary, or can I go right into Phase 2? I don’t want to lose any mass. Any time I’ve taken a week off or even reduced my training, I’ve gotten smaller.
A: No, do not go right into Phase 2. The back-off week (#6) between the two phases has a definite purpose. It will allow your nervous system to recharge and your muscles to completely recover so you can push into the next phase with more intensity. And during that downshift week, you should get bigger, not smaller, despite what you thought you experienced in the past. Here is what hypertrophy researcher Brad Schoenfeld, Ph.D., says about the process… [Read more…]