Vince Gironda was a 1950s era bodybuilder who was known for his unorthodox training theories. I came across Vince Gironda’s theories on Keith Norris’ blog, and was immediately hooked. As anyone that knows me knows, I’m a pretty serious proponent of the Primal/Paleo diet, so seeing what this individual was able to accomplish was extremely interesting.
Given my recent swerve towards the world of aesthetics, naturally I took an even more serious interest into the theories and practices of the world’s first (???) Paleo Bodybuilder. Vince’s thoughts on training are unorthodox to say the least, but I think its important to empty your cup and to give things an honest try.
I had intended to give some of his exercises and rep schemes a try, and realized that today’s chest and back workout used several of Vince’s exercises and perhaps he’d have appreciated my efforts today. Here’s what I did and my observations:
- Gironda Neck Press – This exercise trebles the difficulty of the traditional bench press. I couldn’t handle much weight, but it “felt” good. I used Vince’s 10-8-6-15 rep scheme. (note the pic in the link shows an incline bench, and I used a flat bench)
- Gironda Wide Grip Dips – The reverse grip felt awkward, but not as bad as I thought. Just make sure you’re able to get wide enough on whatever apparatus you use. Although this variation is supposed to minimize assistance from the triceps, I definitely felt a burn in my arms. Three sets of eight felt about right.
- Gironda Sternum Pullups – This variation is very tough, and my ROM began to decline as the sets mounted. I concentrated on really pulling hard to try and get my chest up there. I shot for 25 total reps, and got there in 5 sets with no more than 6 reps at any one time.
- Cable Seated Rows – Just used to hit different portions of my back, plain old 3 x 8-10 reps
- Core – 3 sets of 20 crunches
This workout was completed super fast, but I definitely felt like the muscles in question had been hit in ways they hadn’t ever before. I’m going to stick with this method at least for this particular day in my split. I think I’ll retain my big deadlift and big squat days as they stand.
If any of you have given these a try and would like to comment, please do!