|Gary Strydom: Ageless DVD Review
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REVIEW OF THE DVD
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Chest Workout @ The Mecca Gold's Gym
The DVD started off in Venice, California with Gary meeting the MuscleTime crew outside of Gold's Gym. Gary took off his track pants to hit some leg poses and he was looking hard and dry and ready for contest.
Once inside the gym, Gary saw his first cover of 2006 which was the current issue of Musclemag. Inside Gold's gym, Gary met up with Matteo Baker who is the director of VIP services in Gold's Venice.
Gary was wearing his Proline workout gear and then started his chest workout wearing only his shorts starting off with the 90 pound dumbbells on the flat bench press. Gary was immensely dry and striated and you could see this detail with every rep of his workout thanks to the good filmography of MuscleTime.com. Gary would hit some poses between sets and looked great doing it. Gary quickly made his way up to the heavier dumbbells and kept on pressing. It was early on in the DVD that it became apparent that Gary had some trouble with stomach distention. In other poses it looked as if Gary was at his personal best circa the 1992 WBF championships. While I can definitely say Gary looked better than he did at the 1988 Mr. Olympia, I'm not as certain that he did look better than he did in 1992 with the WBF. He had a different type of muscularity, due obviously to age and muscle maturity, but to say he looked better is open to debate. Gary and several others were convinced his personal best look was in 2006, but I'm still not so sure. If not for his somewhat problematic midsection, I would probably agree. As it is, he is the best of the older guys (40+, if that is considered "old") around today.
Gary went on to perform some seated machine presses for his chest and as usual, hit some poses in between sets. His waist was small and his muscle hardness was excellent. During some poses, Dave Bourlet (owner of the Max Muscle store in Venice) took a photo of Gary with his cell phone camera. Dave appeared to be a tall man, I would peg him at 6'1 and 3/16ths. Gary's chest was huge and full and his abs had a fantastic shape. His chest is probably one of the best in the biz today! Also, he has some of history's roundest, most pleasing looking delts. Gary definitely has a good structure for bodybuilding.
Gary went on to perform cable crossovers for chest and the fullness and conditioning of his chest was apparent. However, like many other scenes in the DVD, Gary's new found stomach distention was also apparent. People speculate on many different things which create stomach distention and I would say one factor people tend to leave out is natural aging. It's just speculation of course, and most would attribute a larger stomach to bodybuilding drugs like growth hormone and insulin as well as hard and heavy basic movements. One thing is for sure, you can't fault Gary in his frontal proportions as we has some of the roundest and fullest muscles around. It's amazing that even at his current size (huge) he still has plenty more room on his frame for more muscle. Rich Gaspari in 1988 may have weighed 20 pounds less at about five inches shorter in height, but he was more muscular than Strydom because of his smaller frame. Gary is the type of bodybuilder who has practically no limit to how big he can get. Realistically, he could probably fit 350 contest shredded pounds on his frame.
Next up, Gary went on the exercise bike for a while and then his workout was complete. He drove home in his nice new car and headed over to the firehouse for a meal. The firehouse is a very renouned restaurant for bodybuilding food.
May 12th, 2006
Featuring Contest Promoter Shawn Ray
Shawn interviewed Gary in this portion of the DVD and Gary said that he wanted to encourage people to take up bodybuilding because it's a healthy lifestyle. This I disagree with completely because bodybuilding (at least in the competitive sense) is full of drug abuse and overeating - not to mention narcissism and vanity. It definitely is NOT a healthy lifestyle despite what some magazines may have you believe. Shawn asked a lot of leading questions to Gary - for those who know Shawn or have followed along with stuff he has had to say you will know he has a hefty sound byte. He's well spoken and like Conan O'Brien has a way to make his guests come across eloquently as well. Gary mentioned that with age his metabolism was slowing down but as far as bodybuilding goes this makes little sense. When you are on 10 times the hormones that you had coursing through your system in the prime of your life, age really does not make a huge difference. Sure, being juiced to the gills is more effective as a young man, but ultimately if an older man is juiced heavily he will still burn fat a helluva lot faster than a young man who is natural. Later on in the interview (as Shawn continued to put words in Gary's mouth lol) Gary went to check on some vegetables he was cooking in the hotel room. Gary did make it clear that he did not need to come back to bodybuilding for financial reasons. Gary is independently wealthy thanks to his clothing line Crazee Wear. It seems that the only reason why he wanted to come back was to promote bodybuilding out of love for the industry. Gary said that bodybuilding needs buzz and a comeback like his would be something to help with that.
After the interview Gary did some posing in the bathroom in the hotel room and said he was a little flat. I would disagree with this statement though as he appeared to be very full and ready for the contest. Gary was hard and full and even his glutes and hams were peeled.
Biceps Workout @ the Mecca - Gold's Gym
Before his workout began, Gary hit some poses outside by his car in his clothes. He hit some poses in the gym too and was looking sharp. Gary started off with dumbbell curls for his biceps using the 55 pound dumbbells. Kris Gethin from FLEX magazine worked biceps with him and started off with some curls using a pair of 70s. His biceps were huge and his forearms were shredded. Gary hit tons of poses in his shorts and was looking as hard as nails - he has some incredible muscle maturity that only comes with time.
Gary continued on with his workout and was displaying some incredible detail throughout his physique. He did "curls for the girls" to get his massive arms to grow. Ron Harris wrote a really good arms training article on Gary in the September 2006 MuscleMag International.
On stage at the Shawn Ray Classic
May 13th 2006
Gary posed and looked fantastic. Aside from being in great shape from a competitive standpoint, he also clearly nailed his tanning down pat and was looking as sharp as can be. Gary went on to place 7th at that show - not bad at all for a 46 year old against some of bodybuilding's top young talent!!
In the Pit
Gary next worked out in the pit in Venice, California. He worked out with shorts and sunglasses and was in fantastic condition. He once again did "curls for the girls" and looked fantastic doing them. His hardness was really showing with the sun beating down on him. Gary also did standing barbell curls for his biceps. He did some abs exercises next and had some great abs on him for a big man.
What happened next in the DVD was interesting. Gary started getting hit on by the women in the area. A middle aged woman asked Gary if he was married and he said no and asked her if she was. Next a younger girl offered Gary some of his lemonade. It was obvious that all the girls who saw Gary got a kick out of him and his physique and were not turned off by it the way they would be turned off by the physiques of most pros - physiques which in general most women find repulsive. Gary is different though - he is tall and handsome and despite being heavily muscled, doesn't have muscularity popping off his frame like some of his competition who look like jacked trolls. Gary is all class and has a look which the girls seem to find attractive.
Gary went back to training and like before, would hit poses in between working sets.
Next up, the MuscleTime guys followed Gary to his Crazee Wear factory in Venice, California. At the beginning of this segment, Gary introduced his new line of nutritional supplements called "Strydom Nutrition" - he explained that he himself uses those supplements to get ready for contests. It seemed that Gary had a fairly large and successful operation going. My understanding is that he invested his WBF earnings into this business and became independently wealthy off the business later on. Mike Christian also had a clothing line back in the eighties when he was competing for the Mr. Olympia title. Mike Christian was another pro who went on to compete in the WBF with Gary. The complete line of clothing including Gary's new style "Strydom" is available online at www.crazeewear.com.
Triceps Workout @
The Mecca - Gold's Gym
Gary trained triceps right after his biceps workout at Gold's gym. Kris Gethin from FLEX magazine was there once again blasting triceps with Gary. Gary has some big and very shredded triceps and on his huge frame he could even stand to add a couple of inches. Gary's potential for size is incredible. Gary was still training in shorts from immediately after his biceps workout. He is around the same height as Gunter Schlierkamp and more impressive in many ways - his muscle density and maturity is greater and he has rounder frontal proportions and legs. However, Gunter has him beat in the back department by a large margin and Gunter's stomach is flatter, although Gunter's waist is larger. They both have their strengths and weaknesses, however I would say that Gary's back deficit puts him below Gunter on the scale of professional bodybuilders - Gary is definitely the best older guy currently on the scene though. Gary hit some poses in between his sets and he was looking huge all around. Very tall - huge frame. He must be an impressive sight in person. After Gary's workout was complete he hit some poses and was looking great with the pump he had. Actor and pro bodybuilder Roland Kickinger showed up and saw Gary posing. Gary's small waist was very notable in his posing, not to mention his very shredded and impressive calves. IFBB pro Will Harris showed up at the gym and explained that he felt Gary should have qualified for the Olympia at the last show he was in (Colorado Pro). Well I'm not sure if I agree with that, he definitely looked incredible and I feel he would have easily qualified for the Olympia had his back been wider. I feel his relative lack of back width (both relative to his competition, and relative to his frontal size) relegated him to seventh place.
Venice Beach & Credits
On the Beach, Saturday Afternoon.
Gary went into the water and hit some poses. He was looking great as always, wearing sunglasses and enjoying his time. As I mentioned earlier, Gary has a HUGE frame and can definitely fit way more muscle on his frame than he currently has. As muscular as he is, he could easily be competing over 300 pounds, just like Gunter Schlierkamp. Gary is bodybuilding's new Don Youngblood in that he is an older guy who can fare well against the young bucks and is constantly improving. Gary was interviewed briefly in this portion of the DVD and Gary had a lot to say about bodybuilding and the current state of the industry. Gary did once again suggest that bodybuilding is a healthy lifestyle. I need to emphasize once again that it is NOT. At least not when bodybuilding drugs are a part of the picture - don't kid yourself, bodybuilding in its current state requires drug abuse to be successful - yep, abuse, NOT use. Sad but true. Gary did claim that he did not eat "bulking foods" like pizza and hamburgers. I don't believe this since I'm pretty sure it is scientifically impossible to get the calories in to get to Gary's size WITHOUT resorting to those kinds of foods. At the end of the DVD, Gary posed with some people, including plenty of hot girls. They seemed genuinely interested in his physique as well. The same could not be said for many other pros - but Gary is all style.
I really liked the new Gary Strydom DVD, and there is still another one yet to come out (also produced by the good guys at MuscleTime.com). Gary was definitely at his all time best during this DVD and the only flaw that is currently on Gary that wasn't there before would be his stomach distention. His back was always a weak point, and hopefully he will improve that when he competes again in 2007. While I disagree with Gary suggesting that competitive bodybuilding is a healthy lifestyle, Gary is definitely a disciplined man who has been quite regimented in getting to where he is today. I predict good things for Gary in the future and I also feel he still has the potential to qualify for the Mr. Olympia - age is just a number!
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