by Siegmund Klein
One of Sig Klein's favorite exercises was doing Handstand Presses on a bench. His personal record was 19 consecutive repetitions.
Yes, it’s time again to take my workout. And how often have I said that to myself. It seems like ages because in another couple months it will be 50 years since I first started systematic bodybuilding…and that’s a lifetime!
Of course one of the most frequently asked questions is whether I still look forward to these workouts. To be perfectly honest I don’t, but I workout nevertheless. Nor do I go through my workouts with the same zest I did when I used to train with a purpose, such as trying to break a record, or when I had some special contest coming up, or when I wanted to accomplish some feat of strength…. so why do I continue to train? It must be a habit I got into but I continue to train three times a week as regularly as clockwork.
Nature, it seems, works on the law of compensation. If there is no demand there is no supply. Without a supply deterioration sets in. This happens internally as well as externally. However, once a bodybuilder gets himself into hard, physical shape it doesn’t take much training to keep it, especially if his muscles were developed sensibly and not merely inflated.
This brings to mind an incident of a West Coast muscle champ who was in New York for an exhibition. I was invited backstage to meet this fellow. He told me about his training and what he did. I was surprised how hard he had to train to maintain his condition. He included many exercises and numerous sets and the time it took him to complete his training, which he did three or four times a week, every week! No wonder he looked tired. His face was lined and his looks drained. I tried to impress upon him that he was working to the point of no return. I assured him that he did not have to take such long workouts for his musculature had reached the point where it would take less than half of what he was doing to maintain it. But I doubt if he heeded my advice.
I believe that if a young man starts training at the age of 17 he will reach almost maximum peak condition in about seven years, continue to increase his strength until about 35 and then retain this plateau for several more years. Of course his endurance may not be the same at 35 as it was in his 20’s.
As for myself I did my last heavy lifting at the age of 35 when I succeeded in bent pressing the 209 pound Rolandow dumbbell, and shortly after that I bent pressed the famous Louis Cyr 202 pound dumbbell at a show in York, PA. From then on I continued to exercise three times a week… and still do. But now at the age of 66 I do not train nearly as vigorously as formerly but I still manage to maintain my physical shape.
My training routine takes me about an hour to complete and when I’m finished I forget training until the next training day, and that’s when I recall “It’s that time again – time for another workout.” and I go right to. How about you? Do you?
Credit: Article by Siegmund Klein in the February, 1969 issue of Muscular Development.