Was Grimek a Monster?

Hail to the Dinosaurs!

Was John Grimek a monster?

He was certainly the most massively
muscular man on the face of the planet
back in the 1930's and 1940's.

Twice Mr. America -- Mr. Universe
winner -- and undefeated in bodybuilding

Senior National Weightlifting Champion
and record holder -- member of the USA
Olympic team in 1936 -- member of the USA
World Championship team in 1938 -- Weight-
lifting Champion of North America for
several years.

A man so strong and powerful that he could
MILITARY PRESS 150 percent of his own

A man with an enormous, seemingly endless
appetite. He once won a 25 cent bet by eating
five full course dinners back to back.

But was he a monster?

I ask the question because one of my long
time readers, Nathan Meyer, just wrote a book
where he comes right out and says it.

Grimek was a monster!

Nathan writes fiction.

He just published a book called ALDWYN'S ACADEMY.
It's a companion novel to A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO
WIZARDRY. Written for young readers because it's
too scary for adults.

So he sends me a copy, and I'm reading it, and
the hero is trapped in an underground cave and the
evil sorceress is after him -- and he's trying to
get away -- and he's being chased by two monstrous
creatures called BUGBEARS.

Their skin is green.

They're seven feet tall.

And very ugly.

"Dark hair bristled in curtains, framing bestial faces,
big pointed ears, and jutting, jagged teeth that looked
like broken daggers as the beasts grinned."

One of them is called SLAKE.

The other is called -- GRIMEK!

"Grimek stepped forward so that his face was visible.
Rubbery lips twisted into a jagged semblance of a smile,
revealing a broken lower tusk.

"I'm hungry, Slake," Grimek growled."

So I ask again -- was Grimek a monster?

At least one of your fellow Dinos seems to think so!

As always, thanks for reading and have a great day. If
you train today, make it a good one!

Yours in strength,

Brooks Kubik

P.S. You can learn more about John Grimek and the other
legendary champions of the Golden Age in my Legacy of
Iron books -- available right here at Dinosaur


How to Get One Great Workout After Another!

Hail to the Dinosaurs!

Over the past week or so, I've been
giving you a series of articles called
"Strength Training Secrets."

If you missed the first four of the series,
you can find them on the Dinosaur Training
Blog. The link to the Blog is on the home
page of my website -- go to the home page
of the Dinosaur Training website and look
for the link button in the navigation bar
at the top of the page. (It's at the far
right of the navigation bar.)

I put all of my daily email messages on the
Blog, so if you ever miss an email message,
you can find it on the Blog.

Now -- to continue a topic from the last
post in the Strength Training Secrets
series -- let's talk a bit more about a
very important topic: visualization.

In his book, Championship Weightlifting,
two-time Olympic champion and six-time World
Weightlifting Champion Tommy Kono discuses
the importance of visualization for weight-
lifters and other athletes.

He notes that in the early 1970's, the USA
gymnastics team was far behind the teams from
other countries, most of whom had their athletes
practice for 6 to 8 hours per day, performing
hundreds of "reps" of each gymnastic movement.
The American team members were high school and
college athletes, and there just weren't enough
in the day to put in that kind of training.

So their coaches began a special program of
visualization drills, where the athletes simply
sat quietly and watched a mental movie where they
performed each movement over and over.

They spent half their training time on visualization
and half their time on physical drills.

And they improved so rapidly that they amazed all
of their competitors in the World Championships and
the Olympic Games.

Tommy Kono believes that visualization is an
important part of QUALITY TRAINING.

He notes:

"Because of my training alone during my
developmental years in the sport, I unconsciously
went over the lifts in my mind between my reps,
sets, and between my workouts. I was aware of what
was the correct movement. I visualized and even
performed the lifting movements without weights
in some of my spare moments.

Perhaps this was the reason I was able to minimize
my time lifting weights and still showed as much
or even more improvement than those who spent more
time training on the lifting platform than I did."

I cover visualization in detail in Dinosaur Training.
If you have a copy, pull it out and reread the chapters
on the mental aspects of training. If you don't have
a copy, grab one now. Visualization is one of the keys
to getting a great workout -- and getting one great
workout after another is the Royal Road to Strength
Training Success.

Yours in strength,

Brooks Kubik

P.S. You can find Dinosaur Training right here:


P.S. My other books and courses are right here --
remember that you save on shipping when you order two
or more at the same time:


"I Got a Story for You!" He Said

Hail to the Dinosaurs!

I started the day with an email from a 62 year
old Dinosaur in Cleveland who was excited as heck
about my new book on weightlifting champion John

He shared a story he had heard from an old training
partner who had competed in a contest once where
John Davis was one of the lifters.

He didn't compete against John Davis -- John lifted
at Heavyweight, and the reader's friend weighed in
at 148 pounds.

But it was a pretty good story. In fact, it was
something that may never have happened in any
other weightlifting contest in history.

"I thought you might like to put it in the book,"
he said.

Well, he was right.

Because the story was already in the book! I had
read about in an old, old issue of Strength and

At this point, there's not much about John Davis'
life, lifting and training that is NOT in the
book. And there are things in the book that you've
never seen or read or heard about -- and things
that have never been published before, including
John's EXACT training program from 1940, the year
he won the honor of being the very best weightlifter
pound for pound in the entire world.

Not just the best in his weight class.

The very best lifter on a pound for pound basis
in the entire world. And that covers a heck of a lot
of ground.

I got John's program from his training partner. He
wrote it down on a little note card more than 70
years ago, while he and John were having dinner
together after a hard workout. He kept it ever since.
And now, it's something I'll be able to share with
the rest of you.

And before I forget -- let me mention that the book
is actually a little bigger and a little longer than
I had anticipated. I thought it would weigh in at about
380 to 400 pages. In fact, it's going to be over 450

But, heck -- if you're writing a book about one of the
greatest weightlifting champions of all time, it deserves
to be a big book.

Right now, I'm offering Black Iron: The John Davis Story
through our standard pre-publication special. The book is
not yet printed -- it will be about 6 or 7 more weeks
before it is printed and shipped to me -- but as soon as
I have it, I'll shoot it on out to everyone who placed
an order.

Everyone who orders during the pre-publication special
gets a bonus with their order -- an 8 x 10 color photo
of John Davis doing what he did best -- lifting some
heavy iron. It will look great right on the wall next
to your squat stands or power rack -- and I guarantee
that it will get you pumped up for some heavy lifting.

If I sound excited about the book, it's because I am.
This one is going to be a real treat for anyone who
appreciates the thrill of grabbing a heavy barbell and
battling against the iron.

Yours in strength,

Brooks Kubik

P.S. You can reserve your copy of Black Iron: The John
Davis Story right here at Dinosaur Headquarters:


Strength Training Secrets (Part 4)

Hail to the Dinosaurs!

(This is part 4 in my on-going series
of articles on Strength Training Secrets.
If you missed parts 1 - 3, you can find
them on the Dinosaur Training Blog.)

"Okay," I said. "I want you to do some
stretching and light calisthenics for a
few minutes, just to get the blood flowing
and your heart beating a little. That's
what we call your General Warm-up. If you
want, you can jump rope for a few minutes
or do some light clean and press or light
power snatches. After that, you'll begin
our actual lifting warm-ups."

"That sounds easy," he said.

"It is," I replied. "And it's supposed to be.
It's a warm-up. But make the most of it by
starting to focus on your lifting. Think about
what you're going to do when you start lifting.
Visualize your entire workout. Break it down
rep by rep and set by set, and see the
whole thing unfolding. It's just like you
were watching a movie of your workout."

"That sounds like hippie stuff," he said. "You
know, like zen Buddhists sitting around and
meditating or something."

"Some of those zen monks were pretty good
athletes," I told him. "Especially the guys in
the Shao Lin temple."

"You mean like kung fu and all?"

"Right. The Eastern martial arts have always
emphasized the mind-body link. And their approach
carries over perfectly for weight training and

"I didn't know that."

"Well, now you do. But stop talking. I want you to
visualize your workout."

It took a few more gentle reminders, but he finally
managed to be quiet long enough to actually start to
wrap his brain around what he was doing.

"Okay, now do your first warm-up set. 5 reps. But
here's the thing. I want each rep to be PERFECT.
Don't just bounce the bar up and down. We both
know this is a light weight for you, and you can
handle it easily. I want you to handle it PERFECTLY.
And that means, shut out all distractions -- focus --
and concentrate. Use the set as a chance to practice
your mental skills as much as anything else."

"Should I close my eyes or keep them open?"

"Keep them open, but don't look at anything. If you
need to, focus on a spot on the wall. I want your
brain looking inside you. I want you to feel each
rep all the way up and all the way down. Understand
how the muscles contract and in what sequence. Learn
to stay tight. Keep your breathing strong and

He did the set. I knew it was different than anything
he'd ever done before.

"How did it feel?" I asked.

"It felt good," he said. "Different. I sort of felt
like I was moving in slow motion."

I shook my head.

"You were actually moving at exactly the right speed,"
I said. "But when you concentrate, everything seems to
slow down."

He nodded slowly. He was starting to understand.

"Ted Williams was the greatest hitter in the history of
baseball," I said. "And part of it was due to his power
of concentration. He said he could see the seams on the
baseball as it came toward him. And that's on a 90 mile
an hour fastball. That's concentration. It's the secret
of any great athlete -- and it's the secret of strength

He nodded again.

"Okay, let me do the next set," he said.

I shook my head.

"No," I said. "Take a minute and visualize it first.
You're going to do 185 pounds for 5 reps. And it's going
to be another PERFECT set."

He nodded, closed his eyes, and began the mental


Thanks for reading, and keep the feedback coming. I'll
continue with more tomorrow.

If you train today, make it a good one. And remember,
don't just lift with your body -- lift with your mind,
as well.

Yours in strength,

Brooks Kubik

P.S. When you train with total focus and intense mental
concentration, you get great results in a minimum amount
of time. I cover this in all of my books, courses, and
DVD's -- and you can find them right here at Dinosaur


Championship Thinking

Hail to the Dinosaurs!

I hope you had a great weekend. We
have plenty of things happening here
at Dino Headquarters, and I'll try to
cover them all in emails this week.
And I'll bring you more in the series
of mini-articles I'm doing on "Strength
Training Secrets."

But right now, let's talk a little about
an element of strength training that most
people don't talk about -- or write
about -- or think about. But it's one
the most important elements of strength
training success.

In fact, it's one of the most important
elements of success in anything you choose
to do.

It's called "Turning negatives into positives."

You could also call it, "Championship Thinking."

I'll give you a couple of examples of what I

1. The Kid with No Squat Stands

A kid named John Grimek trains at home. He has
no squat stands. To work his legs, he has to do
HIGH REP squats with plenty of puffing and
panting. The high rep squats boost his metabolism,
he starts to grow like a weed, and before you
know it, he's one of the best built men in the

He went on to win the Mr. America and Mr. Universe
titles, and to retire from bodybuilding competition
unbeaten -- and rated by many as the greatest
natural bodybuilder of all time.

2. The Punching Bag

A kid named Tommy Kono trains for Olympic
weightlifting in a YMCA where the weight room
is in a recessed area in a room where they train
for boxing. The lifting platform and squat stands
are right next to the speed bag, so all you hear
when you lift is the rat-tat-tat of the boxers
hitting the speed bag. It made it almost
impossible to concentrate when you were

What does the kid do?

He uses it as away of developing his powers
of concentration to the point where he could
block out any distraction.

And he went on to be a six-time World champion
and two-time Olympic champion.

3. The Broken Wrist

A young kid named Paul Anderson gets into lifting
and starts to get really big and really strong.
But then he breaks his wrist. That means that
virtually all of his pushing and pulling exercises
are out the door.

So he specializes on squats -- and he ends up
bigger and stronger than ever -- and when his
wrist is healed, he comes back twice as good as
before -- and he wins an Olympic gold medal.

It's an incredibly common story. You see it time
and time again in the lives of the men who became
legends of the Iron Game.

And it's something that YOU can do -- something that
YOU can apply in your own training.

When you encounter an obstacle, don't view it as a
negative. See it for what it truly is -- an

With that mind set -- the same mind set shared by
John Grimek, Tommy Kono and Paul Anderson -- you
can accomplish anything.

As always, thanks for reading, and have a great
day. If you train today, make it a good one.

Yours in strength,

Brooks Kubik

P.S. John Davis was another man who overcame seemingly
impossible odds to become the greatest weightlifter
of his generation -- a six time World champion and
two-time Olympic champion. You can read about John
Davis, his life and his lifting -- and how he
trained -- in my new book, BLACK IRON -- THE JOHN


P.S. 2 -- You can find my other books and courses
right here at Dino Headquarters:


Strength Training Secrets (Part 3)

Hail to the Dinosaurs!

(Here's Part 3 in "Strength Training Secrets."
This is turning into a free mini-book on real-world,
no-nonsense strength training. Hope you enjoy and
benefit from it!)

I stepped up to the barbell and began to unload

"What are you doing?" he asked.

"Taking it down to 135."

"Why? I always use 350."

"You need to do warm-ups."

"I never do warm-ups. They're a waste of time."

"You need to do them," I said. "Everyone needs to
do them."

"But I'm busy! I don't have time for warm-ups!"

I stopped and looked at him sternly.

"If you don't have time for warm-ups, you don't
have time to train," I said.

"But -- but -- they don't build any muscle. The
weights are too light. What's the point?"

The bar was loaded to 135. I briefly considered
dropping it on him and leaving. Or better yet,
wrapping it around his neck and leaving.

It took an effort of self-control, but I managed
to stay calm and simply answer his question.

"Okay, here's the deal on warm-ups," I said.

"Number one -- warm-ups are an important part
of your workout. No, they don't trigger gains in
strength. muscle and power. It's your working sets
that do that."

"But if you skip the warm-ups, or if you don't do
them the right way, you reduce your ability to go all
out on your work sets. And that reduces your results."

"A cold muscle can generate a certain amount of
strength and power. When the same muscle is warmed up,
it can generate MORE strength and power. And when
you're lifting weights, more strength and more power
is always a good thing."

"If you don't believe me, look at any athlete in
any sport. The athlete spends plenty of time doing
focused warm-ups before going into competition."

"Olympic weightlifting champions will often begin
by warming up with a BROOMSTICK. Then they move on
up to AN EMPTY BAR. And these are incredibly strong
and powerful athletes."

I paused and looked at him.

"Does that make sense?" I asked.

He nodded slowly.

"I never thought about it that way," he said.

"Well, that's the way to start thinking about it."

He nodded slowly.

"Number two -- warm-ups help you avoid injuries.
That's simple common sense. And it's especially
true as you get older."

"I guess that makes sense," he said.

"How old are you?" I asked.


"Well, give it a few more years, and it will make
a heck of a lot more sense."

He nodded. Maybe I was starting to get through to
get through to him.

"I know a lot of guys think it's cool to run out and
grab the bar and start slamming it up and down to show
how strong they are -- but that's dumb. Those are the
very same guys who end up hurting themselves and
dropping out. Don't copy them."

He nodded again.

"Number three is really important," I said. "It involves
the mind-muscle connection."

"What's that?" he asked.

"The mind-muscle connection is what links your mind --
meaning your brain and your nervous system -- with your
muscles. the stronger the link, the more muscle fibers
you activate. "

"People who don't lift weights usually think it's all
about muscle power. It's not. It's really more about mind
power than anything else."

"To get the most out of your training, you need to get
your mind involved in your workout. You need to FOCUS.
You need to CONCENTRATE. You need to eliminate all

"When you train, your mind should be operating at top
efficiency. You should have greater mental focus than
when you do anything else."

"That sounds zen," he said.

I nodded.

"It is, grasshopper."

He was too young to catch the allusion. I sighed, and kept

"When you start training, you need to gradually warm-up
your body so it is ready for peak performance. But you
also need to do the same with your mind. You need to
clear out the fog and the cobwebs of daily life. You
need to tighten your focus and narrow your concentration.
You do that step by step, becoming more and more focused,
as you do your warm-up sets."

He looked stunned.

"Wow, I never knew warm-ups were so important," he said.

"Well, now you know."

I pointed to the bar.

"That's 135 pounds. I want five reps in perfect form, with
good, tight, focus and deep, powerful concentration."

He nodded, chalked his hands and stepped to the bar.


Yours in strength,

Brooks Kubik

P.S. My books, courses, DVD's and Iron Game novels are
available right here:


P.S. 2 The best-seller of the week is my new book, Black
Iron: The John Davis Story:


The Dinos Roar!

Hail to the Dinosaurs!

We’ve been getting tons of feedback about the not so serious lifter who wanted to know “the secrets.” Here are some of the responses from hard-charging Dinos around the world. I’ll put more up later today or tomorrow:

“The secret is: Get serious, keep a lifting log, lift BY the log, consistency is the key so don't jump back and forth from one rep scheme to the next, turn your phone off, turn your TV off, quit dilly-dallying, stop getting advice from the internet, booby-building magazines and "coaches" who don't give sound advice and probably couldn't lift their way out of a wet paper bag, chalk up right the first time, get psyched if you need to and LIFT THE DAMN WEIGHT. I hope I covered all of the secrets.”

-- Jayson Duckett

“He lacks focus, concentration and a real lifting plan.

He's not putting forth a solid effort with all of his distractions.
He's trying something different every workout and listening to
too many "experts" in hopes of finding the secret weapon that
we'll make up for his lack of effort. Too many cooks spoil the broth.
The secret weapon is hard work. Get in, get it done, move on!”

-- T.C.

Is he serious? He reads your books, asks you for advise and then does what some guy on the web says instead.

He isn't structured in his training, he's all over the place, with no aim or goal for his workouts, he just wants do do it all at once.

As a result he has no focus, on a goal or even working out in the first place, he's what I call a 'victim of the information age' all that info from 135 pound hollow cheeked 'experts' on the web telling him that 5 sets of 5 will make him strong but four sets will do nothing, RUBBISH!

He needs to choose a routine (preferably from one of the dino books) and stick to it, also he needs to drop all the distractions, leave the telly off, leave the phone in the house, and if he's the type to fart around with chalk, then well don't use it!

So that's the secret I think, in short:
1 have a goal, per month, per year and per workout
2 stick to a routine that will actually achieve that goal
3 drop the distractions and just get on with it
4 stick to routines (yeah I said it twice, it's important!) it looks like he doesn't even have one.

-- Stephen Hall”

“The secret is to FOCUS and BELIEVE and KEEP IT SIMPLE and be CONSISTENT.”

-- Bob Otrando

“Consistency.....concentration.....patience.....There's a lot more. Dedication, goals and on and on and on. But if nothing else....more chalk.”

-- Mark Smallwood


-- Bob Game

“Concentration is probably a good start. Kick the TV out, pitch the phone, set yourself up a program. Because the biggest secret is (Shhhhh don't tell everyone) but stop piss farting around & lift the bloody thing.”

-- Mark Fisher

“The lifter is unorganized in knowing what he wants to do and is not focus on his training and doesn’t have a log book to tell him what he done previously on his lifts that why he not getting anywhere in his training.”

-- Joseph Fiumara

“Focus on a goal. Simple as that.”

-- Tommy Alm

“The secret is FOCUS!!! Any true Dino knows that intense concentration and mental focus is the ONLY way to train productively. Besides focus the next most important thing would have to be consistency...pick a group of basic, compound movements and a set/rep scheme where you can track your progress and hit it HARD...DINO-STYLE!!!”

-- Mike Bandini

“My reactive answer is to send that guy to beauty school where he belongs so he can truly be his own inner butterfly.

The correct answer is obviously shut up, turn your phone off, throw your tv away (it’s good awkward object training), and train abbreviated, consistent, focused, with perfect form, and of course, so heavy that your neighbors will puke!”

-- Chris Clark


-- Stephen Watson

“I'll tell every one once and for all the secrets to weight lifting and I've been a strength coach for over 20 years. The secrets that Brooks doesn’t put in his books, Dino Files, and e-mails is that there are no secrets. If you pay attention at all and have any kind of sense whatsoever you would already know that. The info Brooks gives us is straight out what it is all about. As Brooks tells us all the time "Just plain hard work" and "Keep it simple." The secret to weight lifting and getting as strong as possible is for people to start paying more attention to people like Brooks and the old-time strongmen mindset and quit paying any attention to the "Wannabe’s" and "Think they knows” out there. I've seen so many so called “certified trainers” that have the secrets to strength training for wrestlers and never been to a match before, let alone ever done it themself. If they only knew, it would scare them away. Practice the advice from Brooks and you will have the secrets. Period, End of Story.”

-- Coach Kem Race

“Focus and concentration not dissipation.”

- -- Algie Roberson

“I would say the secret is this; Hang the everyday events, forget the yadda yadda out there, just warm up, concentrate and actually ...... LIFT!!!”

-- Joseph Perkins

“The secret to getting stronger and bigger is actually lifting weights. Lifting the weights to load the bar while watching TV while keeping up with your peeps does very little for building real strength. (Re-Read chapter 20 of Dinosaur Training.) Real strength training involves planning, focus and dedication. Pick a program, write it down, and DO IT!”

-- Dustin Jones


-- Greg Hull


-- Sultan Magyar

The Secrets -- Part Two

Hail to the Dinosaurs!

(Here's part two of the story. If you missed part
one, read it on the Dinosaur Training Blog!)

Finally, I just couldn't take it any more.

"May I see your cell phone?" I asked.

He handed it to me.

"It's the latest model," he said proudly. "It has
all the apps."

"Does it have an app for hard work?" I asked.


"How about one for concentration, focus and mental

"What are you talking about?" he asked.

From his tone of voice, he must have thought I was
speaking a foreign language. Maybe I was. I don't think
he had any idea about the meaning of any of those words.

"Wait here," I said.

I walked out of the garage, and into his house.
Parked the cell phone on his kitchen table. Went
back to the garage.

"Where's my cell phone?" he asked.

"In the house. Leave it there while you train."

"But what if I get a call?"

"Call them back later?"

"But what about email?"

"Handle it alter?"

"But I can't IM later!"

I nodded.

"That's right. But you also can't train with a bunch
of distractions."

I walked over to the tv, picked up the remote, and
turned off the jabbering gibberish.

"Wait here," I said.

I walked out of the garage, went back into the house,
and laid the remote next to his cell-phone.

When I got back to the garage, he was holding another
remote in his hand.

"This one doesn't work," he said. "What did you do with
the other one?"

"It's in the house with your cell-phone."

His eyes almost popped out of his head.

"What did you do that for?" he asked. "I gotta stay

I sighed.

"Look," I said, "When's the last time a Tsunami hit

"Uh -- never, I guess."

"Right. Because we're too far away from the ocean. But
I'll tell you what. If one hits us while you're lifting,
I'll let you know."

His eyes bulged even more than before.

"But - but -- "

He sputtered to a stop.

"Don't worry," I added. "You'll have plenty of time to
get to high ground."

He dropped onto his exercise bench, and slumped in
despair. he looked the perfect picture of dejection.

"Man, I didn't know training with you was going to be
this hard," he said.

I stood up and walked to the barbell.

"It's not," I replied. "It's actually going to be much
harder than this."


Yours in strength,
Brooks Kubik

P.S. As always, thanks for reading and have a great day.
If you train today, make it a better one than my friend
in the story. And don't forget:

1. If you subscribe to the Dinosaur Files newsletter, you
need to renew your subscription right now:


2. If you missed the first year of the Dinosaur Files
newsletter, you can grab all 12 of the back issues right


3. My books, courses, DVD's, t-shirts, sweat shirts,
hoodies, and Iron Game novels are right here:


"Tell Me the Secrets!"

Hail to the Dinosaurs!

I know this guy who is just frantic
to build strength and muscle, and he's
been hounding me endlessly to give him
a personalized training program "with
all the secrets."

"Read my books, I said.

"I've read them," he said. "All of them.
I do everything you say to do. But I need
to know THE SECRET STUFF -- the stuff you
don't put into your books."

"I don't hold anything back," I told him.
"It's all in the books. Everything you need
to know."

But he didn't believe it. He kept on pestering
me. He wanted "the secrets."

Finally, I got tired of listening to

"When's your next workout?" I asked him.


"What are you doing?"

"Deadlifts, partial deadlifts from the knees,
and presses."

"Okay, I'll stop over and watch you train."


So the next day, I stopped by and watched him
hit the iron out in his garage gym.

He started by grabbing his bar and loading
it up to 350 pounds.

"Aren't you going to do any warm-up sets?" I
asked him.

"Naw, they take too long, and I don't have
time," he said. "Besides, I read this thing
on the internet about how warm-ups are
unnecessary. It works better to just load
the bar and lift. That puts more stress on
your body and triggers more muscle growth."

"Who said that?"

"Some guy. I forget his name, but he's a coach
somewhere. He really knows his stuff."

"What does he lift?"

"I dunno. But he really knows his stuff."

He walked over to the back of the gym, and
pulled out an old television. He turned it
on to a cable tv news show. The talking heads
were arguing about Barack Obama and whether he
should be impeached. With all the yelling and
screaming and finger-wagging, I thought they
were going to break out the knives, clubs and
broken bottles.

"Good show," he said. "I never miss it. You
gotta be informed!"

I nodded.

"Informed is good," I said.

He chalked up and walked over to the bar.

Then his cell phone rang. He stopped, reached
into his pocket, and pulled it out.

"Whassup?" he asked.

He stayed on the call for something like 5
minutes, and then spent another five minutes on
a call he placed to someone else. Then he texted
and twitted for a few minutes.

"Gotta keep up with the the peeps," he said.

I nodded.

"Peeps are important," I said.

Finally, he went back to the bar. By this time,
we'd been in the garage for something like 20
minutes, and he hadn't done a single rep.

He stood over the bar for several seconds. he
actually looked fairly serious, and I thought he
was actually going to lift it.

Suddenly he turned and walked back to the chalk

"Need more chalk," he said.

"I nodded.

"Chalk is good."

"So, what should I do?" he asked. "5 x 5 or a death

"What do you normally do?"

"Whatever I feel like doing. I train instinctively.
That works better."

"Who said that? The same guy?"

He shook his head.

"Naw, that was another guy. But he knows his stuff,

He stroked his chin as he thought it over.

"Maybe I should do heavy singles," he said. "I heard
those were good."

I nodded.

"Yeah," I said. "I heard that, too."


Tomorrow, I'll tell you the rest of what

But for now, consider this. That mysterious
SECRET of strength training success is floating
all around every word of the story. What is it?

Send your answers to me by email -- I'll post
the best ones.

As always, thanks for reading, and have a great
day. If you train today, make it a good one!

Yours in strength,

Brooks Kubik

P.S. My books, courses, DVD's, newsletters, Iron
Game novels, t-shirts, sweatshirts and hoodies are
available at Dino Headquarters:


A Real Life Workout that Really Works!

Hail to the Dinosaurs!

Before we get to today's training topic,
let me remind everyone that we are starting
year two of The Dinosaur Files newsletter
with the May 2011 issue.

Many readers think my daily messages are "The
Dino Files" newsletter. They are not. The Dino
Files newsletter is a hard-copy, snail mail
newsletter. Monthly. 20 pages per issue. Tons
of great articles and photos in each issue.
The best SERIOUS hard-copy monthly magazine
on the market.

If you subbed in year one, you need to
renew your subscription now. If you'd like to
start a new subscription for this year, now's
the time to do it -- and then grab the back
issues from the first year.

For renewals or to start a new subscription
for year two, go here:


For back issues from the first year, go here:


Now let's talk training.

I rec'd a great email from Donato, a 52 year old
Dino from Italy. He's been following the approach
outlined in Gray Hair and Black Iron, including
the simple cycling system I outline in the book,
and he's been getting great results.

And he does it with a very basic, very simple,
Dino-style abbreviated program.

Here's his entire training program:


1. Power clean and press 5 x 5

Note: One clean and one press on each rep. He
does 5 progressively heavier sets of five
reps and finishes with ONE set with his top
weight for the day.)

2. Grip work

3. Gut work


1. Barbell row 5 x 5

2. Dumbbell curl 2 x 6 - 8

3. Grip work

4. Gut work


1. Trap Bar deadlift

2. Grip work

3. Gut work

As I said, very basic, very simple. Nothing high
tech, nothing fancy, and nothing that's a waste of
time. And as I said, he's been getting great results.

Does the "back to the basics" approach really work?

Just ask Donato!

As always, thanks for reading, and have a great day.
If you train today, make it a good one!

Yours in strength,

Brooks Kubik

P.S. Don't forget about The Dino Files!

a. For renewals, and year two subscriptions, go here:


b. For back issues from the first year, go here:


P.S. 2 For older lifters, as in age 35 and up, Gray
Hair and Black Iron is must reading. You can grab the
little monster right here:


Basic, Primitive and Productive!

On Friday I sent a link to a photo gallery
in the on-line edition of the UK Guardian.

It features a boxing gym in Sao Paulo,
Brazil. It's in what looks like a deserted
underpass beneath the Alcantara Machado
Expressway. It was founded by a former
professional boxer named Nilson Garrido.

It's in a poor part of town, and Garrido
runs the place as a community service.
And by doing it, he's giving worlds of
hope and inspiration to the young men who
train there.

The place is as primitive as can be. The
gym features homemade barbells and dumbbells,
a heavy bag made out of an old tire, another
heavy bag made out of an old refrigerator,
and a collection of heavy, awkward objects
that would make a Dinosaur salivate.

The best gyms are like that. They're basic,
simple and old-fashioned. They're not crowded
with the latest super-duper bodybuilding and
strength training machines, they don't feature
all kinds of exotic cardio gadgets, and they
don't have big rubber bouncy balls and fluff

They have lots of heavy iron. And very little
else. Barbells, dumbbells, squat stands, power
racks, lifting platforms, grip stuff, and heavy
awkward objects. And that's it.

And that's a very important thing. You're actually
much better off with LESS equipment than with
MORE equipment.

An old-school gym with basic equipment naturally
fosters a back to the basics training approach.
And the basics are what give you great results.

When you train in a gym with basic equipment, you
understand that in the end, it all comes down to
one thing: YOU AND THE IRON. That's really all
the matters. Going out there and lifting heavy
iron -- and then coming back and doing it
again -- and repeating the process over and
over, always trying to improve your performance
from workout to workout. That's the whole secret.

When you understand THAT, you are well on the road
to strength training success.

I salute Nilson Garrido for the work he is doing.
And I salute each and every one of you for the work
that YOU are doing.

As always, thanks for reading, and have a great
day. if you train today, make it a good one.

Yours in strength,
Brooks Kubik

P.S. For the very best in back to the basics, no
nonsense strength training, grab any of the books,
courses and DVD's from Dinosaur Headquarters:


P.S. 2 My new book, Black Iron: The John Davis
Story, tells the true story of a man who became
the greatest strength athlete of his generation
by training in old-school gyms with the most
basic of equipment, and the most basic of training


Great Feedback from a 68 Year Old Lifter!

Hail to the Dinosaurs!

First of all, if you subscribe to the Dino
Files newsletter -- it's time to renew. Last
month's issue was the LAST issue in your
subscription for year one of the Files. We
are updating the mailing list and removing
everyone who fails to re-subscribe. So pls do
it now, so you keep getting your monthly dose
of Dino-style motivation.


As far as training goes -- I've been getting
tons of great feedback from readers, including
many older readers.

Here's a great message from Don F. about the
importance of regular weight training for older

"I attend a gym exclusively for seniors, It's run
by a group of chiropractors and physical therapists.
They push us pretty hard. I don't know what I was
expecting when I joined, probably something like
physical therapy. Little did I know that they were
going to push us to our limits and then go way beyond
what we thought we could do.

The chiropractor who runs the gym advocates lifting
because it makes the bones stronger and stretches
tendons and ligaments. As you probably know, broken
hips, etc. are a major factor in health of seniors.
He has written a pretty good book on the subject. I
base my workouts both on his book and your Gray Hair
and Black Iron. You have a lot in common.

In addition to pushing iron they accentuate serious
stretching. Case in point -- I had two of my lumbar
vertebrae fused a few years ago. The operation was
not a success and I was pretty much in constant pain.
I could not even stand in one position for more than
a couple of minutes. After about two months at the
gym I realized I was pain free and I've stayed that
way ever since.

One of my friends was in a motorcycle accident in
which his bike was destroyed. He came out of the
accident with only bruises and scrapes. He
attributes his lack of serious injury to the
lifting and stretching at the gym.

One other thing. There are mental components to
lifting. First of all, it makes you feel great,
both physically and mentally. Secondly, it helps
to fight depression. Depression is a serious
problem for many elderly people. Lifting gives
you a sense of achievement and, as you know,
it is somewhat euphoric.

Gray Hair and Black Iron is an important book.
I wish more older folks had access to it.

I'm 68 years old and cannot overemphasize the
value of lifting for seniors."

Don -- Thanks for the feedback and the excellent
summary about the many benefits of strength
training as you get older. I've always said that
lifting heavy iron is one of the best things you
can do for yourself -- and it becomes EVEN MORE
IMPORTANT as you grow older. Keep up the good work,
and keep me posted on your training and your

And yes, Gray Hair and Black Iron is a terrific
book -- and really, everyone needs a copy:


As always, thanks for reading, and have a great day,
If you train today, make it a good one.

Yours in strength,

Brooks Kubik

P.S. If you subscribe to the Dinosaur Files newsletter,
be sure to renew your subscription right now:


P.S. 2 -- If you missed the first year of the Dinosaur
Files newsletter, you can order all of the back issues
right here:


The Legs Go First -- Or Not!

Hail to the Dinosaurs!

They say the legs go first, but it doesn't
have to be that way.

Close to 100 years ago, George Hackenshmidt
was the Heavyweight wrestling champion of the
world -- and that was back in the day when
wrestling matches were real.

He was in tremendous shape as a young man --
strong and muscular in in great condition.

He kept on training for his entire life, and
many years later -- in his late 70's or early
80's, he was able to do the following:

1. Place two ordinary wooden kitchen chairs
across from one another and about three to
four feet apart.

2. Place a broomstick over the backs of the
chairs, so it was waist height for him.

3. Perform a standing high jump right over
the broomstick.

It sounds impossible, but I've seen photos of
him doing it.

Contrast Hack's performance with that of the
typical senior. We're talking artificial knees
and hips, little or no bone density, and
virtually no strength. Many older folks cannot
walk or even stand on their feet without

That's a very good reason to keep on training.
Your workouts at age 20, age 30, age 40 and age
50 are the ones that are going to keep you going
when you're age 60, age 70 and age 80 (and
hopefully, for many years after that).

But like anything else you need to do it the right
way -- carefully balancing training "hard enough"
versus training "too hard."

Balancing "enough" training with "too much" training.

Balancing strength training and conditioning/cardio

Finding the bodyweight that is the best for you as
you grow older -- and then maintaining that magic

There's very little information about serious
strength training for older lifters. Almost all of
the training literature is aimed at the younger crowd.
And much of what is left for older lifters is too basic
and too remedial for anyone other than a beginner.

That's why I wrote Gray Hair and Black Iron. It's
about hard, heavy, challenging workouts for older
lifters. It has a ton of advice written for older
trainees (after all, at age 54, I'm one myself), and
it has over 50 detailed workouts for lifters of all
ages. It's been our most popular book for the past
several years -- and there's a reason for that. It's
a darn good book.

The goal is to have leg and hip strength like George
Hackenshmidt had when you're in your 70's and 80's.
And Gray Hair and Black Iron -- and a barbell - will
get you there.

As always, thanks for reading, and have a great day.
If you train today, make it a good one!

Yours in strength,

Brooks Kubik

P.S. Readers often ask how old you should be before buying
Gray Hair and Black Iron. If you're 35 or older, grab the
book now. And even if you're younger, you may want to give
it a try. I've had many younger guys read the book and write
to say how much it helped them. You can find the little
monster right here:


P.S. 2 My newest book, Black Iron: The John Davis Story, is
right here:


An Iron Game Quiz!

Hail to the Dinosaurs!

Test your knowledge of Iron Game
History and great strongmen and lifters
of the past:

1. Name a six-time World Weightlifting

2. Name a two-time Olympic Gold Medalist
in weightlifting.

3. Name the very first Pan-American Champion
in weightlifting in the Heavyweight Division.

4. Name a twelve-time United States National
Champion in weightlifting.

5. Name a man who held every single World and
Olympic weightlifting record in his weight class.

6. Who was unbeaten in international competition
in weightlifting for a period of 15 years?

7. Name a famous weightlifter who won World
and Olympic championships by training alone,
without a coach.

8. Name the Youngest World Weightlifting Champion.

9. Name the only man to win a World or Olympic
Weightlifting championship in three different decades.

10. Who was the first man to total 1000 pounds in the
three Olympic lifts? (Clue: Steve Stanko was the first
to do so in official competition, but this man actually
did it, an an exhibition, on not one but TWO occasions
before Stanko did so.)

11. Who was the first man to clean and jerk 400 pounds
in official competition?

12. Who is the ONLY Heavyweight lifter who was rated
the very best lifter in the entire world on a pound
for pound basis? (Note: that's truly incredible,
because pound for pound comparisons always favor
lighter men.)

13. Who was the ONLY Heavyweight champion in weight-
lifting who cold perform a one arm chin -- turn back
flips -- and perform a standing broad jump of 11 feet?

14. List a weightlifting champion from Brooklyn who
trained by himself in the basement of a neighborhood

15. Name an American weightlifting champion who was
so good that the Russians refused to enter one of their
greatest champions to compete against him.

Give up?

The answer to all of the above questions is ONE MAN --
and that's why I've written a comprehensive biography
that covers his life, his lifting and his training.

You can find it right here:


Thanks for reading, and have a great day!

Yours in strength,

Brooks Kubik

How to Train to Save Your Life!

Hail to the Dinosaurs!

The light changed, and a tall, broad-shouldered
man with dark hair stepped into the street and
began to cross it.

He was exactly half-way across when a dark car
came speeding through the intersection.

He barely saw it -- and could do nothing more
than roll with the impact as best he could.

The car knocked him high into the air, twisting
and turning and spinning.

He crashed back onto the sidewalk, landing on
his head and shoulders.

It knocked him cold.

But when he came to, he was fine.

Nothing broken.

And especially -- no broken neck.

The thick muscles of his neck, traps and shoulders
had cushioned the impact of the landing, acting as
shock absorbers that protected the fragile bones.

That's a true story. It happened to one of your
fellow Dinosaurs.

In fact, I know of about a dozen Dinosaurs who
are alive today -- healthy and whole -- because
they had similar neck, trap and shoulder
development. They all survived potentially fatal
or crippling accidents or falls. Which just
goes to show you -- accidents can happen to
anyone, at any time. You need to be ready.

And that's why I always urge readers to finish
their workouts with some neck work.

It doesn't have to be anything fancy. I like to
do back neck extensions with a heavy-duty
head-strap. Two or three sets of 10 to 15 reps
will do the trick. Start light and build up
slowly and sensibly.

For the front of the neck, lie on a bench, place
a folded towel on your forehead, and hold a
barbell plate on the towel. Move your head up
and down with neck power alone. Same sets and
reps, and again, start LIGHT!

For your traps, do deadlifts, heavy partial
deadlifts and shrugs.If you enjoy power cleans,
power snatches, high pulls, and similar movements,
then do those.

The Hise shrug is another good one for trap
development. So are one arm deadlifts.

For your shoulders, do military presses, push
presses, dumbbell presses, one arm dumbbell
presses, and see-saw presses.

For more detail about how to put it all together
into a complete workout, grab the following

1. Dinosaur Training: Lost Secrets of Strength
and Development


2. Chalk and Sweat: Dinosaur Training Workouts for
Beginners, Intermediates and Advanced Lifters


3. Strength, Muscle and Power


Remember, the life you save by building a strong,
thick, powerful neck will be your own!

As always, thanks for reading, and have a great day.
If you train today, make it a good one!

Yours in strength,

Brooks Kubik

P.S. All of the above goes double for athletes, martial
artists, servicemen, law enforcement personnel and fire-
fighters. We've covered neck work and training programs
for those who fall into these groups in back issues of
the Dinosaur Files newsletter. If you missed them, you
can grab the complete 12 issue set for 2010 to 2011
right here:


A Big Thank You from Dinosaur Training!

Hail to the Dinosaurs!

Let me begin by saying THANK YOU to everyone
who stepped up and ordered a copy of my big,
new book about weightlifting super-star John

We appreciate your support, and as I've said
many times before, we can't do it without you.

I wrote about John Davis because he epitomizes
a very special generation of lifters.

They grew up in the middle of the Great

They didn't have much money, and I'm sure there
were plenty of times when they went hungry.

They came from poor but honest families. Many of
them were immigrants. Some of them didn't speak
English when they were young.

Somehow, they got interested in weightlifting --
in large part as the results of the unceasing
efforts of Bob Hoffman to promote the sport
through his books, courses and the pages of
Strength and health magazine.

As far as equipment and training quarters, they
didn't have very much. Most of them used little
more than a barbell, a lifting platform, and a
set of homemade squat stands. Some had homemade
benches for doing prone presses. Some had
dumbbells and chinning bars. And that was
about it.

Many of them were self-coached. Self-trained.

And yet, this generation of American lifters
managed to beat the entire world. They took on
the powerful Russian Bear -- the state-supported
Soviet lifting machine -- and they beat it.

Just a bunch of guys who lifted barbells in
garages, basements, YMCA weight rooms
and neighborhood gyms or lifting clubs.

And from 1938 through 1952, the top star in
American weightlifting was John Davis -- a poor
kid from Brooklyn who became the greatest lifter
of his generation -- and one of the greatest who
ever lived.

John died in 1984. Today, nearly 60 years after
his last Olympic victory, his strength, power
and lifting skill -- and his endless string of
championship performances -- are forgotten by all
but the few who either lived and lifted with him or
who study the Iron Game.

John Davis was far too great a man, and far too
remarkable an athlete, to be forgotten. And that's
one of the reasons why I wrote about him.

you can find it right here at the Dinosaur Training


Again, thanks to everyone who has reserved a copy!

As always, thanks for reading, and have a great day.
If you train today, make it a good one.

Yours in strength,

Brooks Kubik

P.S. I also need to thank everyone who has renewed their
subscription to the Dinosaur Files newsletter. If you
still haven't renewed your subscription, do it now so
you stay on the mailing list! The next issue is going
to be another good one, and you won't want to miss it:


The Mystery Revealed!

Hail to the Dinosaurs!

Everyone is wondering:

1.Where was the Mystery Gym where
they heated the place with an old-
fashioned wood-burning stove in the

2. Who is the Mystery Lifter?

3. What does the new book look like
and how can I order a copy?

Okay -- here are some answers:

1. The Mystery Gym was the South
Phillie Weightlifting Club. The
Mystery Lifter trained there in 1940
and 1941.

This tiny gym located on the second
floor of an old brick building in
Philadelphia produced TWO of the six
Gold medal winners in weightlifting
at the 1948 Olympic Games. One of them
was Frank Spellman. The other was the
Mystery Lifter.

Obviously, he trained at other places as
well over the course of his career, but
he trained at the South Phillie WLC in 1940
and 1941. You can read all about it in the
book -- because I interviewed several of
the men who trained with him back then.

2 and 3. For the identity of the Mystery
lifter and to reserve your copy of the new
book during our big pre-publication special,
go here:


IMPORTANT -- if you want me to autograph
your book, please ask for an autograph in the
"Special Comments" section of the on-line
order form.

I am always happy to autograph any book for
you, but you need to ASK for the autograph.

If someone else orders the book for you, be
sure they give me YOUR NAME and ask for an
autographed copy if that's what you want.

As always, thanks for reading, and have a
great day. If you train today, make it a
good one!

Yours in strength,

Brooks Kubik

P.S. Here's the link again -- to a book that
is a true tribute to a great champion:


More About the Mystery Gym!

Hail to the Dinosaurs!

We've had more and more guesses roll in
about the Mystery Lifter and the Mystery

Many of you have guessed the name of
the Mystery Lifter.

No one has guessed the name of the gym. And
frankly, I don't think anyone will. So the
"name the lifter and the gym" challenge is
officially over.

I'll reveal both the name of the lifter and
the name of the gym where he trained back in
1940 on Monday -- but for right now, let me
give you some details about the gym.

And let me note, this is where he trained in
1940 and 1941. He trained ELSEWHERE both before
and after. many of you have guessed the name of
the lifter but placed him in a different gym.

So here's the info about the old gym with
the wood-burning stove:

1. At that time, it was on the second floor
of an old, two-story brick building. There
was a plumbing supply company below it.

2. The building still stands today. It's
very small. It's amazing to think there was
once a powerful weightlifting club in such
small and spartan quarters.

3. There was no heat in the winter, other
than an old wood-burning stove.

4. When it was cold, the lifters left an
old globe barbell close to the stove, so
the handle would be warm when you lifted it.
They used the bar for their warm-ups. After
your warm-ups, you moved on to one of the
other (ice-cold) barbells.

5. They had only the most basic of equipment:
an assortment of barbells of various makes
(including some that were homemade), ditto for
dumbbells, one set of homemade squat stands,
one lifting platform, some homemade benches
for prone presses, and not much else.

6. They had a single Olympic barbell that had
been donated or sold to them at a discount price
by Bob Hoffman.

7. They were all lifters. No bodybuilders. Even
today, members of the gym now in their 80's or
90's sneer at bodybuilders and bodybuilding.

8. They were squat nuts. The squat was one of
their favorite exercises.

9. In their heyday, they were probably the number
two team in the United States behind the York
Barbell Club.

10. One of their members once defeated John Grimek and
Gord Venables in a lifting contest.

11. When the War came, they all enlisted. Several
of the lifters were War heroes. One of them landed on
Omaha Beach on D Day. Another was a sniper in the
Pacific. A third was lying in his foxhole one night
when a German tank came charging out of nowhere and
ran right over the foxhole! (Luckily, he dug it deep
enough that he survived.)

12. Two of the six Gold medal winners at the 1948
Olympic Games trained at this tiny little gym.

Yes, no. 12 is NOT a typo. Let me repeat that.

At the 1948 Olympic Games, there were six different
classes in the weightlifting competition.

Two of the six weight classes were won by men who had
trained at this little gym prior to World War Two.

And that's something worth knowing - because it goes
to show you just how much you can accomplish with a
little bit of hard work and effort.

As always, thanks for reading, and THANKS to everyone
who sent in a guess. If you train today, you know what
to do! Make it a good one.

Yours in strength,

Brooks Kubik

P.S. If you subscribe to the Dinosaur Files newsletter,
shoot me an email when you get your April issue -- and
remember, the April issue is the last issue for our
first year of publication, so you need to renew your


Guesses By the Dozen!

Hail to the Dinosaurs!

I've been buried with emails from readers
who are trying to guess the name of the
mystery man who is the topic of my new book.

The guesses have included:

Steve Stanko

Paul Anderson

Tony Terlazzo

Tommy Kono

Jack LaLanne

John Davis

John Grimek

Milo Steinborn

Steve Reeves

Pete George

Charles Rigoulot

Frank Leight

Louis Abele

Bob Hoffman

Norb Schemansky

Those are interesting guesses -- and one
of them just might be the right answer.

As for the gym, the guesses have been:

The basement of an old church in Brooklyn

Sig Klein's gym

The York Barbell Club Gym

The American College of Weightlifting

Yarrick's Gym

Leo Stern's Gym

John Fritsche's Gym

A gym in Sweden (because of the wood-burning

One reader's garage gym (because his garage
gets cold in the wintertime)

Gold's Gym (I think this was a joke)

"John Davis World Champion Training Headquarters"
(from several readers of the legacy of Iron books)

Eastside Barbell Club

The Harlem YMCA

Yaco's Gym

The Yeoman's Bar

John Fritsche's Gym

Vic Tanny's Gym in Santa Monica

Saunier's Gym in Paris

Coopper Athletic Club in Brooklyn

Maspeth Gym in NYC

The Easton Brothers Gym

The Sacramento YMCA

Bob People's Dungeon

"No Idea What Gym"

a YMCA somewhere

Steve Wolsky's home gym

The French Sporting Club in NYC

The German-American Althetic Club in NYC

a converted two-car garage on Gratiot and
McClellan in Detroit

the York Bellbell Gym (a typo, I think)

Tony Terlazzo's Gym in Hollywood

Tony Terlazzo's Gym in LA

The Milo Barbell Company


Those are also interesting answers -- but NONE of
them are right. One of them, however, is very, very

Stay tuned on Monday. The secret will be revealed.

As always, thanks for reading and have a great day.
If you train today, make it a good one!

Yours in strength,

Brooks Kubik

P.S. If you subscribe to the Dinosaur Files newsletter,
don't forget -- it's time to renew your subscription!


10 More Clues!

Hail to the dinosaurs!

We've had a ton of readers try to win a
free dinosaur training t-shirt by guessing

1. The name of the old time weightlifting
champion who is the subject of my next book,

2. The gym he trained at back in the 1940's
where they had no heat other than a wood-burning
stove. The lifters kept an old barbell by the
wood stove so it would stay warm -- and used that
bar for their warm-ups. After that, they moved
on to the COLD bars!

So far, we've had a number of readers guess the
name of the lifter. (And we've had a number who
made wildly wrong guesses.)

But NO one has guessed the name of the old gym
where they heated the bar in front of the wood-
burning stove.

So I thought I'd give you some more information
about the Mystery Man. See if this helps to
identify him:

1. He is the only man in history to win World
weightlifting championships in THREE different

Think about that for a moment. That's incredible

2. He won TWO Olympic gold medals. (When you order
the book, you're going to see them -- in full color.)

3. He had what was probably the longest winning
streak in weightlifting history -- he was unbeaten
for 15 years.

4. He may have been the only Heavyweight lifting
champion who could perform one arm chins -- and he
could do them while holding extra weight in his hand!
(One of his former training partners told me he saw
him do a one hand chin while holding -- get this --
a 50 pound dumbbell in the other hand.

5. He once entered the Mr. America contest as a favor to
Bob Hoffman and won the Best Back Award without posing,
flexing or spreading his lats. he just stood there -- and
the judges looked at the tremendous thickness of his
back muscles, and fell right out of their chairs.

6. He never did deadlifts, but he could deadlift 705 pounds.

7. He was a huge fan of opera (as were many lifters back
in the day), and he actually studied voice and took singing
lessons. He and Pete George once did a one-week engagement
where they sang on stage at one of the largest theaters
in Europe.

8. He was the first man in history to clean and jerk 400 pounds
in official competition.

9. He was almost completely self-trained, and he devised his
own training programs and workouts. His training programs were
years ahead of his time.

10. He once saved a co-worker's life when a 3,000 pound truck
slipped off a jack and pinned the man beneath it. Our Mystery
Lifter actually lifted the truck high enough that others could
pull the injured man to safety.

I hope that helps identify the subject of my next book.

But as for the gym with the wood-burning stove, GOOD LUCK!
(I'll tell you a bit about the gym later in the day or

The other thing you need to know is this. I'm going to put
up a pre-publication sales page for the new book next week.

Everyone who orders during the pre-publication special gets a
when we ship the book.

So when that special page goes up, place your order and reserve
your place in line!

Yours in strength,

Brooks Kubik

P.S. For all other Dinosaur training books and courses --
and for the Dinosaur Files newsletter -- go here:


Name the Mystery Man -- and the Gym Where he Trained!

Hail to the Dinosaurs!

I dropped a bombshell announcement yesterday

If you missed it, head over to the Dinosaur
Training Blog and take a look.

The bottom line -- there's a big new book
coming, and it covers the life, lifting and
training of one of the very strongest men
who ever lived. A World and Olympic weightlifting
champion and World and Olympic record holder.

I've not only researched the heck out of it, but
I've interviewed his friends, training partners
and teammates. So it is going to give you THE
REAL STORY.And that goes for his training program
as well. His former training partner, now 94 years
of age, wrote it down more than 70 years ago. He
gave it to me when I interviewed him for the book.

I haven't revealed the name of the champion. There's
a reason for that.

We're having a little contest to see if anyone can

1. The Champion's name,


2. The old-school gym he trained for several years --
where they had no heat other than an old wood-burning
stove and had to keep a barbell in front of the stove
so it wasn't ice cold when they grabbed it. They used
the barbell for their warm-ups, and then moved on to the
other, ice-cold barbells.

The first reader with the right answer to BOTH questions
gets a free Dino Training t-shirt.

One guess per reader, and we close the contest at 2:00
EST today.

So far, some of you have guessed the name of the lifter,
but no one has guessed the name of the gym.

So take a stab at it and see what happens.

In other news, the April issue of The Dinosaur Files has
been mailed, so let me know when you get it and what you
think. And remember, if you subscribe to the Dinosaur
Files newsletter, you need to resubscribe right away.

Use the following page for renewals:


If you missed the first year of the Dinosaur Files, you
can grab the entire set of back issues (12 20-page issues)
right here:


As always, thanks for reading, and have a great day. If
you train today (as I will), make it a good one!

Yours in strength,

Brooks Kubik

P.S. Remember -- try to guess the name of the lifting champion
AND the old school gym where he trained. It's a toughie -- I
didn't know this until I interviewed several of his friends
and training partners!

P.S. 2 If you subscribe to the Dinosaur Files, don't forget to
renew your subscription!


Something New From Dinosaur Training Headquarters!

Hail to the Dinosaurs!

If you're reading this message, you're
a serious lifter -- and more than likely,
a true student of Iron Game history.

And probably, on more than occasion,
you've read about one of the great
strongmen or lifting champions of the
past, and asked yourself


You've probably also wondered what it
was like "back in the day" -- back in
the era I call "The Golden Age of

So here's a question for you.

Would you want to read a detailed biography
of one of the greatest lifting champions
who ever lived?

A man who won World Championships.

A man who won Olympic gold medals.

A man who set World and Olympic records.

A man who did it the old-fashioned way.

No drugs, no supplements, and no coach.

No fancy equipment, and nothing high tech.

He did some of his best training in a little
gym where the only heat in the winter-time
was an old wood-burning stove. In the winter,
it was so cold that they kept one old barbell
in front of the stove so it stayed warm. When
you started your workout, you got to warm up
with that bar. After that, you had to use the
cold bars.

Would you like to read a biography that includes
information gathered from interviews with that
man's teammates on World and Olympic teams?

Would you like to learn EXACTLY how the man
trained -- as told to me by his former training
partner, now 94 years of age (and looking 20
years younger).

Would you like to see the piece of paper
lying immediately to my left side as I type these

It's from that 94 year old man -- the champion's
former training partner.

It's a small, yellowed note card.

It has the champion's EXACT 8-week pre-contest
training program on it.

He wrote it down while the champion dictated it
to him while they were having dinner together one
day more than 70 years ago.

And how about this -- would you like to see
unpublished photographs of the champion? Photos
that no one has ever seen?

What if all of that priceless information ended
up in a great big book -- and you can find it
right here at Dinosaur Headquarters?

Is that something you might be interested in?

Well, stay tuned -- because there's going to be
a very special announcement coming.

Be looking for it.

This one is going to be very, very special.

Yours in strength,

Brooks Kubik

P.S. Can you guess who I'm writing about? The first
person to guess the name of the lifter AND the name
of the gym where they kept the barbell in front of
the old wood-burning stove gets a free Dinosaur
Training t-shirt.

One guess per reader, and the offer is open for the
next 24 hours only.

Dinosaur Style Gut Training

Hail to the Dinosaurs!

I've been getting quite a few questions
asking about gut, grip and neck training.

I suppoose that's only natural, since I so
often note that you should finish your
workout with gut, grip and neck work.

So let's talk about gut, grip and neck
training. We'll cover gut work today,
and grip and neck work later in the week.


If you're training hard and heavy on the
basic compound exercises (squats, deadlifts,
presses, etc.), you're already working the
muscles of your midsection pretty hard.

If you do Olympic lifting exercises, you're
working them VERY hard with front squats,
overhead squats, snatches, and jerks.

If you're doing one arm overhead exercises,
such as DB or KB presses or swings, you're
working your midsection VERY hard.

Which means, you don't need to do very much
in the way of specialized gut work to build
or maintain strong abs and obliques.

All you need are two or three sets of 8 to
15 reps at the end of your workout.

Your best exercises are:

1. Bent-legged sit-ups, preferably on a sit-up
board. As you get stronger, hold a barbell plate
on your forehead when you do them.

2. Leg raises, which can range from lying leg
raises to leg raises while lying with your head
at the high end of an incline board to hanging
leg raises.

3. Side bends holding a dumbbell in one hand.

My personal favorite is the leg raise and the
hanging leg raise. Sometimes I do the hanging
leg raise with a side to side motion or a
rotation ("window-washers").

To make them more challenging, try wearing
iron boots. If you don't have iron boots, you
can wrap some heavy log chain around each leg
(at the ankle) and secure it with a clip. Be
sure it's tight so it doesn't fall off.

Many years ago I took a length of rope and ran
through a 25 lb. Iron Grip plate and knotted it
over and over so it was extra-secure, and did lying
leg raises with the plate attached to my feet. As
I got stronger, I moved up to a 35 lb. plate.

It worked great.

If you try it, though, be sure you use a strong
rope and make it very secure. Use Boy Scout knots
or sailor knots. If you don't know Boy Scout knots,
find someone who does. You don't want the thing
falling apart on you.

As I mentioned, do a couple of sets of 8 to 15 reps.
The midsection muscles are like any other muscles. You
don't need to train them with endless sets and endless

If you need to lose some excess weight from the
midsection, follow the diet in Gray Hair and Black Iron.
It's simple, easy and effective.

Gray Hair and Black Iron also has some good ideas for
cardio training for lifters, and if you need to trim a
few pounds, the cardio work outlined in the book will work
well for you --- without affecting your strength training.

So there it is -- Dino Style Gut Training.

As always, thanks for reading, and have a great day. If
you train today, make it a good one.

Yours in strength,

Brooks Kubik

P.S. Go here to grab a copy of Gray Hair and Black Iron. And
yes, I wrote it for older lifters, but the diet, the cardio
work and the training programs will work for any lifter of
any age:


Championship Character

Hail to the Dinosaurs!

In Dinosaur Training, I wrote, "A dinosaur is a man
with character." Let me give you an example of what
I mean.

At the World weightlifting Championships of 1950,
John Davis, the defending World and Olympic Champion,
was in a ferocious battle with the Russian heavyweight,
Jakov Kutsenko.

Davis was leading after the first lift, the press,
but it was very close as they went into the second
lift, the snatch.

Now, for those readers who aren't familiar with
Olympic weightlifting, the snatch is a non-stop
lift where the athlete powers the bar from the
platform to arms length overhead in a single
movement. It happens so fast you can barely see
it. Less than one second. Boom! Just like that.
And with incredible weight on the bar.

Scientists have run tests, and Olympic weight-
lifters performing the snatch are the fastest of
all athletes.

Nowadays, a lifter will drop down into a squat
as he pulls the bar. This is called, naturally
enough, the squat snatch.

But back in John's day, most lifters performed
the split style snatch. To do this, they pulled
the bar up and dove under it, splitting their
legs so one foot was forward and one foot was
far behind them.

The split style was the style that John Davis

Now, the key to success in the split style of
snatching is to drop as low as possible under the
bar. Sometimes, a lifter would go so low that the
knee on his trailing leg would touch the platform.
If that happened, the lift was no good. Touching
your knee to the platform was a disqualification.

So here's John Davis, neck and neck with the big
Russian -- and on his second attempt in the snatch,
John calls for 325 pounds. If he makes the lift, he
is virtually assured of winning the
World championship.

John chalks his hands -- steps onto the platform --
approaches the bar -- gets set -- and pulls high and

The bar shoots upward, and John drops under it like
a flash, his legs scissoring into the split position.

He makes the lift, the officials give him three white
lights, and the crowd roars in approval.

But wait -- something's wrong!

John walks over to one of the officials, and speaks to
him quietly but earnestly.

The other officials join them.

They almost seem to be arguing.

Then they walk over to the scoring table.

John tells the scorer that the lift was no good. His
knee touched the platform. It happened so fast the
officials didn't even see it. They counted the lift
as good. But John knew the truth. And he refused
to take credit for a bad lift.

"Nobody had seen it," he said later. "But I didn't
want to go around with a weight on my mind."

When the crowd learned what had happened, they cheered
louder than when they thought he had made the lift.

On his third attempt, John once again threw the bar
overhead -- and this time, it was a perfect lift.

And John went on to beat his Russian rival handily --
and to retain his World championship.

It was a remarkable example of CHARACTER -- and it
gives you a deep insight into one of the most important
aspects of championship performance in weightlifting
or any other sport.

Go back and reread John's explanation for why he did
what he did.

"I didn't want to go around with a weight on my

Neither do I. And neither do you. The bar is heavy
enough. You don't ever need any additional weight on
your mind.

And that's a secret to gold-medal performance.

As always, thanks for reading, and have a great day.
If you train today, make it a good one.

Yours in strength,

Brooks Kubik

P.S. You can grab a copy of Dinosaur Training at the
Dinosaur Bookstore -- and you can learn quite a bit
about John Davis in it. You also can learn more about
John Davis and other lifters of his era in the Legacy
of Iron books: