Muscle, Smoke and Mirrors…
by Anthony Roberts
I’ll be the first to admit that I’m not interested at all in bodybuilding, other than because of the fact that more steroids are involved in it than any other field in the world. If you’ve forgotten, I write about steroids, not bodybuilding, although the online steroid-using community is pretty much 99% bodybuilding enthusiasts (the other 1% are actually bodybuilders, i.e. they compete).
But, while I was writing my new book (which is finished, and off to the editor!), I was really forced to research the history of bodybuilding, the nutritional industry, and the magazine industry. Granted, I have first hand experience inside many companies (ALL of whom will be talked about extensively in my book), but honestly, less than a decade ago, I was still in college, and working at a gym…so I really didn’t know the “history” of all of this. Luckily, I was introduced to a man named Randy Roach, who is unquestionably bodybuilding’s premier historian.
I read his book Muscle, Smoke, and Mirrors in about a week (it’s over 500 pages), then interviewed him for my own book. Really, it shocks me to think that people call themselves bodybuilders and honestly have no idea about how it all started, and what really went down over the last 100 years. I mean, every football player in the United States can talk about Johnny Unitas, Joe Namath, and tons of guys from the past (even quoting their stats) but with bodybuilding, the average enthusiast can’t even talk about what happened in the ’80s!
Most people just accept the stories they read online or in magazines, without understanding the truth behind it. For example, I just read an advertisement put out by Fizogen (it’s one of those free books you can pick up at GNC and places like that…an industry advertising magazine or whatever you want to call it). In this booklet, they give credit to “Joe York” the owner of York Barbell for helping to pioneer the idea of protein powder supplements. As a point of fact, there is no such person. York Barbell was owned by Bob Hoffman, an anti-semite, who once called Joe Weider a “kike” in print and was later forced to print a retraction, and who also founded Muscular Development magazine. Yes, MD was founded by an anti-semite, ironically.
It’s amazing to me that a company whose primary market is bodybuilders (Fizogen) would actually print such a glaring error, and the worst part about it is that most people, even the most die-hard fans, wouldn’t have spotted the error. But I digress.
If you’re a bodybuilding fan or competitor, you need to read Muscle, Smoke, and Mirrors by Randy Roach. I’m not a fan, and I read it cover to cover. There is a severe lack of real knowledge in most people interested in bodybuilding, and it’s just absurd. I play rugby, and I can tell you literally everything about the sport, from how and where it originated, to every World Cup winner, etc…
The point I’m getting at is buy Randy Roach’s book, because you owe it to yourself. Dave Tate once told me that the most expensive book in the world is the one you didn’t buy, and this is a clear example of that. Buy the fucking book. And don’t be a cheap skate, buy the hardcover. www.randyroach.ca
Article Source: Anthony’s Blog