T Nation

Arnold's Books

I just ordered Arnold’s books, Encyclopedia of Modern Bodybuilding and The Education of a Bodybuilder from amazon. Have you guys read them? Thoughts?

I thought it was required reading for all bodybuilders?

Honestly, I read it and thought it was a good book in that it gives you some good ideas and has a huge exercise guide. It doesnt really provide you with a “program” other than the 3 days/2times a day thing that arnold did.

Its a good book though, worth 25 bucks for sure.

Yes I got it when I started BB and used it like a blble. It’s a classic and a good buy.

I got it not for the advice really but just because it’s really fun to read.

I thought education of a bodybuilder was a great motivational read. You really get to feel Arnold’s deep passion and desire to excel. I still have mine.:slight_smile:

It’s ok except for some of his theories, like leg extensions are for deep definition in the thighs.

The encyclopedia was an AWESOME book. The only thing you must keep in mind is that Arnold’s training is partial to Arnold, It is EXTREMELY high in volume, and the frequency is higher than average as well.

It’s not for the feint of heart, or the fast twitch dominant.

I keep The New Encyclopedia of Modern Bodybuilding on my coffee table. That way I can show my guests my favorite pics of men in their underwear. When the ladies comment, Isn’t that kind of gay? I just direct them to page 664, which has a picture of 20 or so men lying nose to nose on beach towels in their speedos.

I read The Education of a Body Builder many years ago, which was of course, Arnold’s autobiography up to that point. I found it to be incredibly inspirational and entertaining. a must read for any bodybuilder.

[quote]Andrew Dixon wrote:
It’s ok except for some of his theories, like leg extensions are for deep definition in the thighs.[/quote]

I don’t know, every high level bodybuilder incorporates leg extensions into his workout. It seems like the people who bash it the most, are also not bodybuilders.

[quote]oboffill wrote:
I just ordered Arnold’s books, Encyclopedia of Modern Bodybuilding and The Education of a Bodybuilder from amazon. Have you guys read them? Thoughts?[/quote]

The encyclopedia was the first bb book i read when i started training. I loved it then, however, looking back it is probably not the best text available.

The training programs would crucify the average trainee with their high volume and the dietary advice is now a little old(though thats no fault of Arnolds, just time have changed and supplments have arrived).

The best bit is prob the fact that its highly motivational and the exercise list is large. However, there again, there are other texts that offer far greater detail on the specific execution of exercises.

Nevertheless probably worth a read. Just be aware, there are better texts on every area covered in the book by quite some margin

[quote]Majin wrote:
I thought education of a bodybuilder was a great motivational read. You really get to feel Arnold’s deep passion and desire to excel. I still have mine.:)[/quote]

I agree, I also got great motivation from his autobiography, due to him being so zealous about bodybuilding.

What do you guys recommend as additional true bodybuilding-specific texts?

[quote]oboffill wrote:
What do you guys recommend as additional true bodybuilding-specific texts? [/quote]

That’s about it. I am being serious. Everyone reads Arnold’s book. It usually ends there if the person realizes just how much of this is simply about pushing really hard and eating/resting enough to compensate for it. Bodybuilders have that stigma of being less intelligent simply because it never took an advanced degree to figure this out. It isn’t because everyone with big muscles is actually stupid.

I have TONS of bodybuilding mags stored away. The bits and pieces you pick up here and there and from actually talking to people who reached their goal need more credit than they get here often.

[quote]Professor X wrote:
oboffill wrote:
What do you guys recommend as additional true bodybuilding-specific texts?

That’s about it. I am being serious. Everyone reads Arnold’s book. It usually ends there if the person realizes just how much of this is simply about pushing really hard and eating/resting enough to compensate for it. Bodybuilders have that stigma of being less intelligent simply because it never took an advanced degree to figure this out. It isn’t because everyone with big muscles is actually stupid.

I have TONS of bodybuilding mags stored away. The bits and pieces you pick up here and there and from actually talking to people who reached their goal need more credit than they get here often.[/quote]

Yeah, I thought as much. Ever since I logged onto T-Nation all I’ve heard about Arnold is how insane his routine was while disregarding the rest of his work (concentration of muscle contraction, complete muscle fiber stimulation, etc). Even Chad Waterbury is now advocating two a days and high volume, which, guess what, is what Arnold did.

The encyclopedia gives you all the major exercises in one book, complete with images and explanations.
It has pictures with the great BB champions.
It explains the basic principles very well.

Pages 229 - 245 (Book Two, Chapter 7 - Mind over matter: Mind, the most powerful tool) give me the goosebumps every time I read that part. That’s stuff that everyone should read often, not just BB’ers.

There’s also a book called “Fantastic: The Life of Arnold Schwarzenegger”, which is Arnold’s biography from childhood up to some time after him being elected the governor of CA.

http://www.amazon.com/Fantastic-Arnold-Schwarzenegger-Laurence-Leamer/dp/0312933010/ref=pd_bbs_1/104-3243665-0304742?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1181508173&sr=8-1

That book also is outstanding for motivation.

I love the book, it is a great bedtime read. Following his beginners program put way to much stress on my shoulders though. Just remember that what is in that book is what worked for him. For instance, using a barbell to do curls. I am not sure where he gets the ROM in his wrists from, but my wrists were sore for about 5 days after I tried that with a heavy weight.
For me the book is about inspiration, motivation, and advice. It really made me realize that Arnold doesnt just have freakish genes like some people try to says, but he worked his F’ING ass off to get the way he was.

I?m glad to see that I?m not the only one who found Arnold?s workout plans to be insane. I tried slowly shifting my workout to his beginner plan over a month and ended up spending the last week wondering when my triceps will be back to normal so I can start lifting again.

[quote]supabeast wrote:
I?m glad to see that I?m not the only one who found Arnold?s workout plans to be insane. I tried slowly shifting my workout to his beginner plan over a month and ended up spending the last week wondering when my triceps will be back to normal so I can start lifting again.[/quote]

It would be unwise to follow the programs Arnold did unless you had some chemical help.

[quote]oboffill wrote:
I just ordered Arnold’s books, Encyclopedia of Modern Bodybuilding and The Education of a Bodybuilder from amazon. Have you guys read them? Thoughts?[/quote]

After you read it and go through the programs, try ripping the encyclopedia apart as a test of strength, or it can be useful as a weight for warming up.

I read and finished the Education in a night and morning. Absolutely fascinating. Before training with weights he did Freehand exercises with his older gym friends at the lake.

It goes like this
Arnold Freehand Workout
Exercise Reps
Puhsups 100
Dips Vertical 50
Bent over Row 50
Bent Leg Sit-Up 100-200
Bent Leg Raise 50
Bent-Over Twist 50
Deep Knee Bend 50-70
Calf Raise 50
Close Grip Chin 30
Offdays: Swimming or Running

He says beginners take 4-6 months. I should be able to do it in about 2-3 weeks.

I never do abs and full range Vertical dips are insanely hard.