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BendtheBar 10-06-2011 10:47 PM

Vince Gironda Appreciation Thread

BendtheBar 10-06-2011 10:48 PM

"The only people who don't breath are dead people."

BendtheBar 10-06-2011 10:49 PM

BendtheBar 10-06-2011 10:50 PM

BendtheBar 10-06-2011 10:51 PM

BendtheBar 10-06-2011 10:51 PM

BendtheBar 10-06-2011 10:54 PM

Vince Gironda was an American professional bodybuilder, author and owner of the celebrity-famous Vince's Gym. His nickname was the Iron Guru.

Early life and career

Vince Gironda (November 9, 1917 - October 18,1997) was born on November 9, 1917 in Bronx, NY. While Vince was still a young child, the family moved out west to Los Angeles when his father, a stuntman, got offered work in the upcoming Ben Hur film. Vince tried his hand at being a stuntman as well but when he saw a photograph of John Grimek, he realized he needed more physical development and began lifting weights at the age of 22.

The first gym he trained at was the local YMCA. He was there for approximately eight months before moving to the Easton brothers' gym. The Easton brothers taught him to be one of their instructors. He worked there and experimented with training protocols before opening his own gym in North Hollywood, California in 1948.

Training philosophy

Gironda is often quoted as saying that bodybuilding is 85% nutrition. In fact, he was what some may call a health food nut. He was also an early proponent of low carb dieting, and recommended the use of numerous supplements, including desiccated liver tablets, kelp, digestive enzymes and glandulars such as adrenal and orchic. In certain circumstances Gironda would recommend up to 3 dozen fertile hen-eggs a day, along with raw (unhomogenized, unpasteurized) milk. Large amounts of fertile eggs, he said, is equal to the anabolic steroid Dianabol in effectiveness. He almost never provided supporting scientific evidence for his theories.

He had what many consider "unorthodox" training ideas. For example, unlike many other physique trainers, he did not prescribe regular back squats for most male trainees (his gym had no squat racks), stating that they caused the over-development of the glutes and hips relative to the thighs. The exception would be female trainees and rare men who actually needed more glute and hip development. Typically, Gironda prescribed sissy squats, hack lifts, front squats and a special style of squat which he called the "thigh squat" for thigh development. In addition, he was one of the first few in the bodybuilding scene to comment that sit-ups do nothing to the formation of abs.

He also admonished against using the regular bench press for chest training, thus, for Vince, the bench press was an inferior exercise - he favored the "neck press" in which the bar is lowered, with a wide grip, to the neck instead of the chest. He considered his Gironda dips (on the "V-bar") the best overall pectorali developer (the dip could be considered equivalent to the decline bench-press). For Vince, pecs should be a wide slab, and not some kind of woman breast look.

When the 1960s rolled around, Vince's reputation grew as a personal trainer due to his pupils winning all the important contests, the most well known being Larry Scott winning the first IFBB Mr. Olympia in 1965. Bodybuilders who have trained at Vince's Gym over the years include "Body by" Jake Steinfeld, Lou Ferrigno ("The Incredible Hulk"), Frank Zane, Don Howorth and even Arnold Schwarzenegger. Gironda came to be known as the Iron Guru, a name former magazine editor and photo/journalist Denie Walter gave him.

Trainer to the stars

By the early 1950s he was a very well known trainer of both champion bodybuilders and movie and television actors. Gironda claimed to be able to get a person into shape faster than anybody. He also claimed that the movie studios would send their actors and actresses to him for that reason.

A short list of stars who trained at Vince's Gym includes Robert Blake, Cher, Clint Eastwood, Denzel Washington, James Garner, Brian Keith, Tommy Chong (of Cheech & Chong) and Erik Estrada.

In the 1970s Vince wrote countless articles for Iron Man, managed his mail-order business, started a nutrition supplement company and authored his own training and nutrition manuals, all the time still operating his Gym.

In the 1980s, a book was published with the collaboration of MuscleMag International publisher Robert Kennedy titled "Unleashing the Wild Physique". It contained tons of knowledge Vince gathered and tested throughout his 30+ year career. The release of the book prompted a promotion tour where the Iron Guru gave sold out seminars throughout the US and Canada.

Downfall of Vince's Gym

In the 1990s the growing popularity of state of the art gyms appealing to the masses and more personal trainers to the stars made it difficult for simple gyms to operate and so Vince's Gym closed in November 1995. A contributing factor to the gym closing was Vince's beloved son Guy who had severe health problems. This took the wind out of Vince and had no motivation to run his gym.


Gironda died on October 18, 1997, less than a month before his 80th birthday.


* Robert Kennedy and Vince Gironda, Unleashing the Wild Physique, 1984, Sterling Pub. Co, ISBN 0-8069-7888-0
* Alan Palmieri, Vince Gironda Legend And Myth, CD-ROM, 2004
* Daryl Conant, "InVINCEable, 2009

BendtheBar 10-06-2011 10:55 PM

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BendtheBar 10-06-2011 10:55 PM

Training to Failure for Muscular Growth | Iron Guru


Training to Failure for Muscular Growth

Muscle tissue does not grow unless taxed 85 percent but beware, never work to 100 percent because maximum energy output will stop all muscular growth.

BendtheBar 10-06-2011 10:57 PM

The High Fat Diet | Iron Guru


The High Fat Diet

It worked for me; I found a diet that SUSTAINED me. Sustained me with a minimum of food. I was in Positive Nitrogen balance and I needed an energy source that lasted longer than an hour and a half.

I needed a 6-hour energy source – which is fat. There are some experiments that I'm going to conduct on fats that are 100 years old. I guess you might say I'll spring it on the unsuspecting physique world.

Maybe I should consume a quart of lard everyday and then let someone take cholesterol and triglyceride tests, ha, ha.

I've had old World practices for longevity prove themselves so many times over.

There are some fascinating nutritional practices that Emil Bonet made me aware of years ago. He saw these fantastically developed European handbalancers that looked like Olympic weightlifters, heavyweight division.

He marvelled at their development and he went backstage to talk to these performers who were very much peasant stock, middle Europeans trying to get out of the hole by performing.

He observed them drinking lard!

Oh, my, Pritikin would come in here and have you arrested by an army if he heard you say that.

I know that the first guy to teach me weightlifting in the 50's was a Hungarian refugee. He ate lard sandwiches. I thought it was a carry-over from hard times, but both his parents were working and he was living a fairly good life in Southern California. Certainly not in a ghetto area.

I asked him about it; maybe old habits, but he swore by this practice. He was a superb athlete and went on to become one of the youngest tennis pros in the state.

Yes. I believe it. Sounds hard to believe, I know. I feel it's the other stuff we put in our bodies plus a lack of exercise that confounds our use of fats.

Pritikin doesn't have a 19" arm either. He sits around and plays with computers. He didn't come up with his formula. Reels and reels of computer tape did. And it's still only theory.

In defence of cholesterol and fat, let me bring up something that is very carefully hidden by the drug companies involved: when the cholesterol controversy first came to light, there was a drug put out that emulsified cholesterol.

And they still have, well; they’ ve probably settled the claims by now. There were very heavy lawsuits. People that lost their hearing, eyesight, hair, skin turned to leather. Sexual proclivities, ah, a general loss of everything but life. Because they were taking these cholesterol-emulsifying drugs that were supposed to work. Well, the drug did work and those were the problems.

Many patients that were older even went into senility. Remember that the brain is around 80 percent, or so, cholesterol. Don't quote me on that figure, but suffice it to say that the largest part of the brain's makeup is cholesterol. You cannot regenerate male hormone without cholesterol. Kinda important to bodybuilders and weightlifters, eh?

Again, and I've said it so many times it's boring, cholesterol isn't the culprit in the first place!

I see that many medical examiners are now starting to agree with me. They should've been reading some of the reports in Iron Man over the decades!

Sometimes I wonder if Iron Man and a few others don't have closer pulse to health than the AMA Journal and what not or so-called "sanctioned" material.

Let's say it was Triglycerides. The problem lies in the "carrier". Who are these people that are having trouble? Trouble with these (related) problems. People that are inactive in the first place! Especially those that have NEVER been "active".

I've sold people in here vitamins that have never had a vitamin in their life! Hard to believe nowadays. Never had a vitamin? So you can imagine what you'll find walking around out there, as far as general health is concerned. They don't know what a good meal is.

Many of these people are naturally hypertensive because of their poor diet. They're prone to everything: heart disease, arthritis. What is disease? It's a breakdown of the entire organism.

There's no one thing you can pinpoint. Let's get these people back into general good health again – Then we can treat the weak links. Before you prescribe anything - get them back into overall good health. At least as much as possible. Hopefully you get them before the dam breaks.

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