Tag: Frank Zane

Frank Zane as The Silver Surfer

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A recent trawl through Ebay uncovered a story which for me, has a very unhappy ending. Stumbling across a 1979 movie poster for the Silver Surfer, the Marvel superhero capable of travelling through space aboard his trusty surfboard, I was shocked to find name of the legendary bodybuilder and three time Mr. Olympia Frank Zane attached to the project. So I did a little more digging and came across one of the greatest what if moments in bodybuilding… and no I’m not being overly dramatic.

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Tracing the Mass Monster in Bodybuilding

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Are bodybuilders becoming too large?

It’s a simple question but one loaded with controversy. Today most Internet forums are filled with heated arguments about whether the ‘mass monsters’ of today are helping or hurting the sport.

Rather than continue the common narrative that the 1990s and the Dorian Yates era was the dawn of the ‘Mass Monsters’, today’s post argues that bodybuilders and their forerunners have always taken their physiques to the extremes of their time. In other words, bodybuilders regardless of the decade, have always displayed bodies well beyond the reach of the common man.The bodybuilders of today who stand tall and wide are rather than damaging the sport, continuing the tradition of freakish bodily appearances.

After all, Bodybuilding has always judged physiques based on the best combination of size, shape, symmetry and conditioning. With this framework in mind, let’s examine the freaks of bodybuilding past.

Sandow, the Original Mass Monster EugenSandowTrue

Should you Workout to Music? Old School Approaches

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Unless you own a home gym, the issue of whether or not you train to music is usually decided for you. Nowadays the gym stereo is a much a part of the gym floor as the weights themselves. Depending on your gym, the decision to leave your headphones at home results in anything from pop music to death metal drumming through your ears. There is, very little wrong with this in theory. After all, the early callisthenics teachers of the nineteenth-century advocated exercising to music.

How were things done during the so-called ‘Golden Age’ of bodybuilding in the 1960s and 1970s? Furthermore, if possible, should you train without music? The bodybuilders of yore held mixed opinions…

Dennis B. Weis, A Seminar with Frank Zane (1977)

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The following interview took place with the legendary Frank Zane during the bodybuilder’s preparation for that year’s Mr. Olympia, a competition Zane won by the day. Detailing Frank’s workout, nutrition and mental preparation, it offers a valuable insight into the career of one of bodybuilding’s most recognisable characters. Enjoy!

Frank Zane: A Bodybuilder You’d Want To Look Like

Outside of bodybuilding circles, Frank Zane is practically unheard of. Despite winning the Olympia three years in a row at the end of the 1970s, he was superseded by perhaps the most famous bodybuilder of all time, Arnold Schwarzenegger. But while Zane might have been forgotten by popular culture thanks to Arnold’s freaky muscles, he’s still the bodybuilder you probably most want to look like.

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Frank Zane’s Ab routine

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Few bodybuilders are remembered solely for their individual body parts. The collective entity? Certainly. But the individual sections of the body? This is a far rarer phenomenon. While Dorian Yates may be remembered for his towering Lat spread and Tom Platz for his Quad sweep, Frank Zane holds the distinction of being remembered for his incredibly refined mid-section. Indeed, photographs of Zane hitting the stomach vacuum, shown below, have taken on something of a mythical status.

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At a time when bodybuilders had not yet fallen victim to the desperately low body fats of modern times, Zane was known, envied and remarked upon for his vascularity and chiselled abdominals. How then, did the former Mr. Olympia train his abdominals and keep himself in such incredible shape? What tips has he given for us mere mortals?

Frank Zane’s Growth Program

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The following extract comes from Frank Zane’s excellent bodybuilding work: The Workouts -Personal Training Diaries, which is available from his website. Zane, a three time Mr. Olympia, is one of the few bodybuilders to defeat Arnold Schwarzenegger in his prime and is possibly the most aesthetic man to win an Olympia. The polar opposite to the ungainly Bodybuilding’s current mass monsters, Zane’s training approach focuses on progressive overload and pumping the muscles with blood in order to sculpt a defined and proportional physique. What’s more Zane has used variations of this workout throughout his training life, making it one of the most effective programs for both novice and advanced lifters.

Check it out below.

Read More

Tracing the Mass Monster in Bodybuilding

Cartoon-Muscle-Man-color

Are bodybuilders becoming too large?

It’s a simple question but one loaded with controversy. Today most Internet forums are filled with heated arguments about whether the ‘mass monsters’ of today are helping or hurting the sport.

Rather than continue the common narrative that the 1990s and the Dorian Yates era was the dawn of the ‘Mass Monsters’, today’s post argues that bodybuilders and their forerunners have always taken their physiques to the extremes of their time. In other words, bodybuilders regardless of the decade, have always displayed bodies well beyond the reach of the common man.The bodybuilders of today who stand tall and wide are rather than damaging the sport, continuing the tradition of freakish bodily appearances.

After all, Bodybuilding has always judged physiques based on the best combination of size, shape, symmetry and conditioning. With this framework in mind, let’s examine the freaks of bodybuilding past.

Sandow, the Original Mass Monster EugenSandowTrue