Mike Mentzer

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Mike Mentzer

Postby stevein7 » Sun Mar 26, 2017 7:07 am

Just saw a cutting from some magazine on a facebook site saying Mike squatted 475lb for 30 reps. I thought that sounded better than the Platz effort of 500x23. I know all of this is a weird science experiment of roids injected up the butt, however, does anyone know if the Mentzer squat figure is legit? Anyone done anything better?
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Re: Mike Mentzer

Postby PierreSuter » Sun Mar 26, 2017 1:11 pm

No idea if the Mentzer claim or others are true, but the biggest high rep squat numbers I've heard of are Kevin Tolbert's 600 x 30 and Joe Dube's 710 x 17.

http://info.rogersathletic.com/get-stro ... bert-Files

http://www.chidlovski.net/liftup/a_inte ... 032005.asp

Both sound unbelievable, but Kevin's seems reasonable in relation to his Dad Doc Ken's 407 x 23 at like 170 pounds at 50+ years old. Kevin was 250 pounds of muscle in his mid 20's and built to squat, so why not 50% more than Ken?

The Joe Dube claim I have a hard time swallowing.

I also heard Paul Anderson would squat 700 x 10 without warm up and as much as 900 x 10 in exhibitions. If you believe that then Dube's 700 x 17 doesn't sound too crazy.
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Re: Mike Mentzer

Postby Snake Plisken » Sun Mar 26, 2017 2:42 pm

Yeah, not really heard that one about Mike, but on El Dardens forum was a mention of how good a squatter Ray (his brother) was. Maybe a true #750 PL and apparently could manage #900. He was also apparently good on the tru squat, with #500x10 where no one else could barely do a rep or 2!?
I think they also mention how depth might have been a question with a lot of gym squats.

Ray also apparently went on to say, he could move his squat up by doing it once per week, without all the PL stuff some of the caoches were putting out.
And in so many weeks went from #500 up to over #800-#900!? He was said to have been stronger than Viator in a few lifts.
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Re: Mike Mentzer

Postby FMJ » Mon Mar 27, 2017 2:51 am

Funny enough, after seeing Martin Seim's 700lbs x 10 squat the Joe Dube 710lbsx17 sounded a lot more reasonable. Especially because he really was an Olympian and his legs were enormous. Might have been highish squats or with a lot of bounce; for some people that is all the difference*. But I don't see much reason for him to lie given that he does not exaggerate his low rep numbers.

*There is a powerlifter named Jewgenij kondraschow who was benched 190kg x 17 raw with a good bounce but has never hit 230kg for a single. Such is life.
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Re: Mike Mentzer

Postby Chris McCarthy » Mon Mar 27, 2017 9:51 am

My stance on these claims is probably pretty predictable, but they are of interest as they represent to me the "Big Fish that Got Away" stories of our sport.
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Re: Mike Mentzer

Postby Snake Plisken » Tue Mar 28, 2017 10:42 am

Speaking of "Big Fish" Chris, I see Tom Martin did a gym pull of over 410kgs/ #900+...!!!!
Huge pull for anyone, but a guy more or less his size, is hyper phenomenal.
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Re: Mike Mentzer

Postby lockout » Wed Mar 29, 2017 12:05 pm

stevein7 wrote:Just saw a cutting from some magazine on a facebook site saying Mike squatted 475lb for 30 reps. I thought that sounded better than the Platz effort of 500x23. I know all of this is a weird science experiment of roids injected up the butt, however, does anyone know if the Mentzer squat figure is legit? Anyone done anything better?


I'm calling bullshit for the following reasons:
1. If he really did do it, he definitely would have bragged about it. But he never mentioned it once.
2. If he really did do it, people would have been talking about it a long time ago and he would have consequently gotten more respect from more people in the business. But that never happened either.
3. I recall years ago (maybe 15 or so) hearing Mike used to squat around 400 for reps, which was totally believable. Never heard anything higher than that.
4. Personal opinion from ~25 years in the game, but he just wasn't big enough to be lifting that kind of weight, nor would there have been any need to.
5. Why are they all of a sudden coming out with this now on facebook 16 years after his death? Fuck facebook, it's bullshit.

And for the record, I am a fan. Just calling bullshit where it's do. If the story was true, we would have heard about it a long time ago. It's funny how the stories and numbers get more exaggerated decades after a guy dies. Maybe in 20 years they'll be saying Arnold was the first guy to curl 500?
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Re: Mike Mentzer

Postby lockout » Wed Mar 29, 2017 12:28 pm

PierreSuter wrote:Doc Ken's 407 x 23 at like 170 pounds at 50+ years old.


I actually have a friend who squats 400x4 with a hatfield bar at the same weight and age, about 165 lbs and 50 years old. But his squats are only just below parallel, not ATG. Never doped as far as I know either.

That 407x23 I actually have a tough time believing. Those weights could have been faked. But at this point I also have a tough time believing that it's totally impossible either.

Even if it wasn't possible naturally, I'm sure there's some PED's out there that would be of big help in making it possible (along with age experience and hard work).

But either way, some things are possible that we never even knew. And you never know for sure until you try and find out or if someone else does it and proves you wrong. How about that story of the running strongman? Absolutely mind blowing.
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Re: Mike Mentzer

Postby randygillett » Wed Mar 29, 2017 6:09 pm

lockout wrote:4. Personal opinion from ~25 years in the game, but he just wasn't big enough to be lifting that kind of weight, nor would there have been any need to.


If he didn't do it it wouldn't have been for lack of size. I saw him guest pose back in 1978 (and got his autograph). He was absolutely monstrous. He showed up in full off-season bulk mode. He looked like he weighed about 270lbs and had a huge, distended gut. He still looked impressive though.

I would bet money that Ken Leistner couldn't do 407x1 when he claimed 23 reps. His overhead press claim for that workout was equally ridiculous in my opinion. I'm about the age he was when supposedly accomplished those lifts and about 40lbs heavier. I was way stronger than him during our primes. It just doesn't add up.
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Re: Mike Mentzer

Postby lockout » Fri Mar 31, 2017 10:44 am

randygillett wrote:I would bet money that Ken Leistner couldn't do 407x1 when he claimed 23 reps. His overhead press claim for that workout was equally ridiculous in my opinion. I'm about the age he was when supposedly accomplished those lifts and about 40lbs heavier. I was way stronger than him during our primes. It just doesn't add up.


What was the workout? What kind of weights were used?
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Re: Mike Mentzer

Postby Snake Plisken » Fri Mar 31, 2017 11:08 am

This was taken from Draper's site from apparently Dr Ken himself, when asked about the color of plates at the Iron Island Gym...

http://www.davedraper.com/fusionbb/show ... tid/25168/

On the plates used in the video we made (yes, the "controversial" video where it was claimed the plates were made of balsa wood, magnesium, styrofoam, etc), I had taken the time to also paint the lettering red on the York kilo plates and Iron island 45-pound plates (I had a mix of both), which was a nice contrast to the silver plate. In the past, I would only occasionally take that extra step in also using an antique brush with enamel paint to do that, but it really gave a great finished look to each plate. I hope all of this will suffice.

Doc


Personally, I never really doubted Ken much from all the Steel Tip articles and the Hardgainer articles. He always seemed to come across as a no bullshit lifter, even though some of his stories sounded wild and his feats of strength seemed pretty good.
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Re: Mike Mentzer

Postby randygillett » Fri Mar 31, 2017 1:52 pm

lockout wrote:
randygillett wrote:
What was the workout? What kind of weights were used?


It was a workout he videotaped for distribution. Someone else will be able to provide a better description of what was done. I first saw the video in 2008 several years after it was made and that was just the squat portion, 407lbs for 23 reps. Until then I had never doubted the veracity of his claim and thought it was one of the most amazing feats of strength I'd ever heard of considering his advanced age, light body weight, and lack of supportive gear. After seeing the video, though, things just didn't look right. Primarily, the weight didn't look that heavy on his back and not a grinder was seen.

I believe he followed up the squat immediately with around 250lbs for four reps on the overhead press, deadlifts with over 300 for reps and a few other lifts.
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Re: Mike Mentzer

Postby PierreSuter » Fri Mar 31, 2017 7:36 pm

I'm more with Snake here... never took Ken to be a BS'er. To me in the vid it looked like he was good for around 10-12 consecutive squat reps but he took long pauses after that and made it all the way to 23. Some guys like Blackflag are really good at reps and I assume Ken was too having done high rep squats for decades. His max single may have been under 500. From what I understand the 250 or so OHP was actually a push press... I can do that myself but am nowhere near the squat.
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Re: Mike Mentzer

Postby Snake Plisken » Sun Apr 02, 2017 8:16 am

PierreSuter wrote:I'm more with Snake here... never took Ken to be a BS'er. To me in the vid it looked like he was good for around 10-12 consecutive squat reps but he took long pauses after that and made it all the way to 23. Some guys like Blackflag are really good at reps and I assume Ken was too having done high rep squats for decades. His max single may have been under 500.


Years ago, when I was doing lots of high rep tarp bar deads, I was able to hit #475x20+ and #500x12-15 t&g and was still only at the time able to do a single with #560-#570. My 85%er had quite a few reps before I burned out. The ratio from high reps to a single was quite close. Perhaps higher rep training, repels the lactic acid response and aloows one to keep hitting the same intensity output, without it having to be full blown effort!?
Now that I have put much more effort into hitting a higher single and having a steady diet of mostly multi sets of x3's x2's, x1's, my ratio seemed a bit higher. My reg conventional dead, was maybe #405x15-20 but my top single was #620.
I do think you can, over time, change those ratios, instead of just resolving yourself to the fact that one is locked in genetically, to certain ratios.
What if doing the Hokey Pokey and then turning yourself around, is really what it's all about???
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Re: Mike Mentzer

Postby lockout » Mon Apr 03, 2017 11:42 am

I have a feeling that having a good strategy for staying lean permanently will make you stronger pound per pound in the long run. So that's a point to consider.

The bigger guy who tries to cut might lose strength temporarily due to lack of energy during that time period. Even worse, if he doesn't have a good maintenance strategy and yoyo's, he's going to have to go through that process more than once. Not good. Because that's more time spent with not training your heaviest.

But the guy with a good maintenance strategy? The guy who stays lean? And maintains weight? He eats "enough". Enough to maintain weight and for energy for his workouts. And not enough to go overboard and get fat. Simply "enough". He's going to do better in the long run because he never has to cut. And even if he has to cut once in a while, it's probably only short or easy cuts, nothing crazy. So yeah, that guy is going to have the most energy to lift optimally with heavy weights more often.

I had to figure that one out the hard way the first time I really had to drop some weight. I was a 220 lb fat slob and trying to cut down to a healthy weight. My bench quickly dropped from 320 lbs to 300, no matter how hard I trained. Meanwhile my 165 lb friend was still benching 315 for reps and improving.

See? There are consequences for doing it wrong. And benefits for doing it right. Take a guy who's been doing it the right way for decades, and he's likely to walk out a very strong dude. Even at an older age and even at a lighter weight.
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Re: Mike Mentzer

Postby WildGorillaMan » Tue Apr 04, 2017 10:44 am

I had never before heard the claim that Mike Mentzer squatted 475x30 so I googled it.

The only references always comes back to a single picture cut out of a muscle magazine, I assume the same one Sutton saw on FB.

Image

We all know how reliable and factual muscle magazines are when it comes to claims of strength.
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Re: Mike Mentzer

Postby Charles Nelson Reilly » Wed Apr 05, 2017 11:11 am

are there any pictures of him without a mustache? i bet he looks as weird as Magnum PI.


so we're still debating the 407 x 23 after all these years.


now that everyone can post training vids online that number at that bodyweight still impresses but overall the "strength feat" has become kind of mundane.

407 x 23? why the fuck not.
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Re: Mike Mentzer

Postby stevein7 » Fri Apr 07, 2017 4:00 am

That is indeed the cutting I saw. I have seen a pic of Mentzer aged 19, looking very built, no moustache.
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Re: Mike Mentzer

Postby PierreSuter » Sat Apr 08, 2017 7:11 am

475 x 30 half squats are entirely doable for a strong bodybuilder weighing in the mid 200's.
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