Muscular Development Review – June 2016

MD June

Dana Linn Bailey graces the cover this month which is a metaphor for how anachronistic the concept of the “magazine” is in the digital age. By the time these things hit the media stands, the information is already a dinosaur. DLB, her star fading, likewise seems to be “yesterday’s news” in an industry that operates on an ever moving conveyor belt of new vs. “has-been” talent.

DLB, as nice a person as she is (or portrays herself to be), talks about her move to becoming an ethical vegetarian, intermittent faster and instinctive trainer….basically if there’s a bandwagon out there, DLB is all over it! I think that in the dwindling pages which has become this magazine, too many of them are devoted to DLB’s redundant schtick these days….


With that expression she’s always mugging, maybe she meant intermittent “farting”….

The question to the pros this month asks “did the posing round affect how the athletes placed at the 2016 Arnold Classic?

Shawn thinks that Kai’s physique was more dominant in the latter half of the show, yet the posing definitely cemented his name in the annals as one of the greatest posers of all time with that particular performance.

Kai posing

Beyond Kai, Cedric, Hidetada and Jose Raymond, Shawn opines,
“after these four men, the posing took a steep fall in terms of quality and interest level. Most were forgettable, if not outright boring. In a contest of high stakes, I believe the new scoring of the posing round helped Kai Greene land his third Arnold Classic title, as well as made him focus on the art of posing even more than usual”

Kevin agrees. Cedric he says, lacks that audience connection because he’s always looking down instead of engaging the crowd. Kai however:

“Kai’s posing is dead-on. He wows you with unique poses and moves that no one has ever done before, and never will do again…..He brings a certain high energy level to his routine, and he knows how to connect with the crowd.”


McGough looks back at the first New York Pro in which Darrem Charles won! Interestingly, the over 50 Charles, now competes and is winning Classic Physique shows 11 years later. He won the show at 231lb and now competes at a much more svelte, classic weight.

Darrem Charles - New York Pro

Darrem Charles – New York Pro

Charles now at 47 years old.

Charles now at 47 years old, 10 years later.

Ahmed Haidar was 2nd with Victor Martinez in 3rd. A young Kai Greene was just launching his pro career and came in 6th. This was an unheralded splash as most punters dismissed him as an “also-ran”. But Kai was to go from strength to strength from this contest winning the Colorado Pro a few weeks later. His now contest prep guru, George Farah placed 4th at the same New York Pro.



Kai 2006

Kai 2006

Not a lot of the repetitive research review (how many research pieces can be done on HIIT, for fuck’s sake!) caught my attention this month apart from a few pieces:

Inadequate sleep stimulates the endocannabinoid system (eCB)— a group of nervous system receptors that affect appetite, pain sensations, mood and memory. “Inadequate sleep increases the risk of type 2 diabetes, weakens the immune system, impairs mental function and increases impulsive, risk-taking and addictive behaviors. It also promotes overeating, and eating unhealthy foods. (Sleep, 39:653-664, 2016)”

Mindfulness techniques during weight loss had no additional effect on weight loss, blood sugar, waist circumference, blood pressure or C-reactive protein (a blood marker of inflammation). Mindfulness techniques do not appear effective for promoting weight loss. (Obesity, published online March 2016)

Exercise increases adrenaline, natural killer cells and interleukin-6, which combined to become potent cancer fighters. The researchers speculated that adrenaline acts as a signal to interleukin-6, which turns on the natural killer cells that fight the cancer.

The anabolic steroid nandrolone decanoate (Deca-Durabolin) can be detected for at least nine months in some people– according to a study from Karolinska Institute in Stockholm, Sweden.

Glutamine’s efficacy as an effective supplement is once again called into question with the verdict being that it’s right up there with flushing your money directly down the toilet in terms of effectiveness. Quoting Victor Prisk MD – the article’s author;

So, I would say that if you are eating all of your meals with high-quality protein, supplementing with glutamine will likely be a waste of money. If you are extremely physically stressed, and overtraining to make weight for a contest (meaning you probably aren’t prepared), then perhaps adding 10 to 20 grams of glutamine per day may be a consideration for immune system and GI support, with prevention of muscle catabolism.

Schonfeld looks at whether an upper limit of useable protein per meal exists – the common folklore suggesting that anything above 30grams being a wasted effort. It seems that the amount is well above that often cited amount.

“Given that the anabolic effect of a protein-rich meal lasts approximately five to six hours, a good rule-of-thumb for maximizing muscle growth is to consume a minimum of three to four evenly distributed daily meals containing at least 30 grams of a high-quality protein. Within these boundaries, it probably doesn’t matter how you allocate the rest of your protein consumption on a per-meal basis— just make sure you take in close to a gram per pound of bodyweight per day.”

Lee and Dave

“50 Secrets of the Pros” is largely a space filler and a waste of a read. Most of this shit is ghost written by Ron Harris himself and rarely comes from the actual training diaries of the pros….who mostly don’t even keep fucking diaries anyway. One tip I did like:

Dave Henry does tricep extensions on a Smith Machine – seated and with the bar starting behind the head.

Perpetual grinder and industry nice guy John Meadows is featured in perhaps the worst pictorial I’ve ever seen in a magazine, The photos are some seriously goofy shit-shots that don’t flatter Meadows’ physique at all. For fans, there’s nothing really new in this bio-article discussing John’s long climb to the bottom of the pro heap.

Screen Shot 2016-06-10 at 7.44.59 pm

Screen Shot 2016-06-10 at 8.03.00 pm

A feature on Dexter Jackson assesses his chances of winning the New York Pro – the only title which alludes his near record breaking string of victories. (As we now know Dex took out the show)

Screen Shot 2016-06-10 at 7.49.58 pm

The Blade’s Contest History

Screen Shot 2016-06-10 at 7.50.15 pm

There will never be another bodybuilder (barring some technology in the future that enables life extension) that will rival this record – especially since DJ went from Bantamweight to adding 100 pounds over his career. Many think he could have beaten Phil last year, and as we know by now, he’s been cleaning up the last few shows, so he’s definitely a front runner for this year’s Mr O race.

Will 2016 be the year Phil takes a spill?

Will 2016 be the year Phil takes a spill?

Dan Gwartney looks at the effect of AAS on fertility, noting that it’s a somewhat hit and miss affair. For some, they can still knock their missus up while on cycle, while others it’s bye-bye ballsacks, “you’re done”. Permanently. Forever.

Email Dave Palumbo who apparently has a foolproof stack for brining them back online, but I don’t see permanent infertility as a bad thing necessarily, ,

Justin Compton get shitty with a fan who questions his PED use claiming that he’s a very conservative user. Of course “conservative” means different things to different people – but the Vanilla Gorilla, Compton, looks anything but considering his bloated 27 year old countenance. You don’t get that look from just using a tidbit of creatine and the odd sus250 injection, Justin!

Justin's "conservative" offseason look.

Justin’s “conservative” offseason look.

He also mentions in another question he doesn’t go the NSAID route for aches and pains because of their effect on the stomach.

Cedric admits to being a bit of a “program-slut” when it comes to training experimenting with a range of different philosophies to shake things up and see how it goes. He does DC, Yates, volume anything to eke out continuous progress..

Cedric side tri

BPak gets asked about fat loss and says that 40 mins a day on an empty stomach is the grind that makes things happen in that area. No tricks, just work. Hams need their own day according to Ben – fast twitch fibres need some heavy weight, so again, putting in the hard yards is crucial.

Screen Shot 2016-06-09 at 5.44.15 pm

Yates was never big on dumbbells because he said they were too taxing to get into place and the risk for injury was too high.

Dorian Side tricep

Dexter thinks the posing round shouldn’t count towards the final score, but the athlete should definitely have place a high degree of effort their presentation.

He also acknowledges a certain level of proximity bias when training one’s significant other – they more than likely won’t listen to you, but will gladly soak up the advice of others. Encourage them, but don’t waste your time giving advice.

He’s also not big on leggings aka, “tights” – an article of clothing no man should be caught dead wearing in the gym…unless you’re Ronnie Coleman.

who wore it better

Who wore it better?

Jay thinks that higher fats and lower carbs played a role in helping him achieve better conditioning going into a show, but he always had to eat a lot to avoid flattening out.


George Farah’s “secret” in getting Kai to drastically alter his condition from the morning to the night show at this year’s Arnold was to put back in water and some fruit in order to help him “go to the bathroom” between the two shows. He said that cutting water made him bloat up with the excessive amount of food Kai had to eat to maintain fullness.

Hany Rambod believes that “to turn pro” you need to be able to seek out expert guidance in the form of coaching, don’t compete too often because the growing occurs in a solid offseason, stop making excuses and whining about shit. It’s character building, son!

And that’s a wrap.


  3 comments for “Muscular Development Review – June 2016

  1. June 13, 2016 at 12:02 pm

    DLB certainly does not look that good currently as what is displayed on the front cover. I guess all these special effects make it too easy even if someone is not in condition for a photo shoot. Interesting how Dexter’s contest prep has evolved quite a bit over the years in terms of meals and training. I am big fan of him and will look forward to what package he brings to the Mr Olympia this year. Great post mate, it is always engaging reading your posts.

    Liked by 1 person

    • June 13, 2016 at 1:09 pm

      Yep, deep field this year in the Mr O. Exciting show for once. I’ll be there with CW to witness it first hand. 🙂 Hopefully Dex does some damage!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. June 14, 2016 at 8:29 am

    Hopefully I will get to go one year, it would be awesome to go once at least.


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