Gironda: Legend & Myth
Presented by Alan Palmieri - Review
Review by Rahul Alvares
hundred and thirty four page long book is undoubtedly
the most comprehensive piece of work I have ever read
on Vince Gironda. I offer thee Alan Palmieri my heartiest
congratulations on the excellent work!
Vince was truly a legend,
myth and an excellent bodybuilder all rolled into one.
His writing and training methods are still the best around.
The trainer of the stars he was Arnold Schwarzenegger,
Clint Eastwood, Larry Scott and Cher to name a few
I will not waste time in introducing to you a man you
already know. Instead we will dive straight into a very
Vince Gironda is almost
a biography. The author Palmieri was lucky to have corresponded
with Vince personally. This book brings out the sincere
gratitude and respect that Palmieri held for his mentor
Vince. The book is the disciples attempt to make
known to the world the reality behind the master.
It does not say what is
right and wrong. In fact right at the start Palmieri mentions
that he himself did not follow everything Vince taught
him. Lets take the example of desiccated liver which
was probably was one of Vinces most cherished diet
ingredients. He advocated taking two every waking hour.
Palmieri however is led to believe that consumption of
liver tablets in such copious quantities could lead to
I myself have read a few
of Vinces articles and I must sympathize with Alan.
Some of Vinces theories might indeed have been questionable.
Heres one sentence I picked from one of Vinces
Courses in the book - The best time to workout is when
the blood sugar is highest, which is in the morning- From
what I know blood sugar is actually lowest in the morning!
To me Vince sometimes appears
a hot tempered spoiled brat; he was always throwing out
students from his gym who didnt follow everything
he told them to. Unfortunately he was a genius; the Einstein
of bodybuilding. And that everyone knew including Larry
Scott and Schwartzenegger and that is why weve all
had to put up with him!
It seems however from Palmieris
experience Vince could be a nice guy also sometimes. Palmieri
did definitely learn a lot from Vince which makes the
compilation Vince Gironda truly a masterpiece.
Let me list some interesting
notes I made for the review:
1. Excellent exercises;
there are a lot of exercises in this book youve
probably never have heard of such as the Lateral Dumbbell
Swing, Reverse Curl Body Drag Style, Barbell 1/4th Roll
Up and Alternate Calf Heel. Vince always stressed on symmetry
rather than muscle size and these were the exercises he
modified for the purpose.
I particularly liked the
notes on the Barbell Sissy Squat.
2. Good notes on common
3. Cycling; Vince was a
firm supporter of changing routines both in training (muscle
confusion) and diet. The notes on cycling diet such as
the three days on protein and two days
off, and constantly changing training with the 15
sets of 4, 8 sets of 8, etc, were very interesting to
4. Vinces Master and
Pro-Courses; complete with training and diet - very good
5. Question and answer series;
Also very good,
6. Additional well written
articles by guest writer Ron Kosloff provide valuable
insight into the legend Gironda.
7. Interview transcripts
of Dave Draper, Don Howorth, Dick Tyler, Larry Scott,
Bill Pearl, plus articles by Paul Becker, show the impact
he made on the world of bodybuilding and the respect he
earned from the greatest of bodybuilders; respect that
he will carry forever.
6. Miscellaneous; excellent
notes on using Vitamin C, diuretics, breathing, bodybuilding
for men over forty, Vinces views on drugs, including
interesting tips such as why single arm training
is useless , why it is necessary to come up
on the big toe while doing calf exercises, etc.
8. The photograph section
including photographs of Larry Scott, Vince Gironda, Don
Howorth, Dave Draper, etc. were truly amazing.
Vince was certainly a man
way ahead of his time. It is interesting to see that much
of what is all the rage today (such as the
low carb diet for fat loss), was already known to and
taught by Vince way back in the fifties!
1 The descriptions for many
of the exercises, such as the Reeves Alternate Rowing,
Scott Press and Barbell Rollover and Press have not been
clearly given. You must understand Palmieri that these
are unusual and new exercises for most bodybuilders. It
would help if these descriptions would be accompanied
with good photographs or sketches as well.
2. There is also a fair
bit of repetition in the book. Vinces Master Series
is actually a repetition of Palmieris notes which
come first in the book. Good editing could make the book
3. Some of the supplements
Vince includes in the program have tricky names. More
explanation or notes would be necessary for names such
as gland tablets, panotothenic acid, R.N.A tablets, alerphan
tablets, tri -germ oil capsules, arginine ornithine tables,
L- tryptophan, vio-gamic B-15 Pangamate Acid-calcium,
orchic tissue tablets
you get the point Palmieri!
But for these few small
drawbacks I would have rated Vince Gironda a five star
book. It is definitely a must have for every
bodybuilder. Great book and Great work Alan Palmieri!