John Grimek was born on June 17, 1910 in Perth Amboy, New Jersey. He was the son of Slovak immigrants who were peasants from a village in Slovakia called Ústie nad Oravou. John is one of the few competitive bodybuilders that have never been beaten.

But John did more than bodybuilding as he started with weightlifting which got him selected into the USA weightlifting team to compete at the 1936 Olympic Games held in Berlin, Germany. John also represented the USA two years later competing successfully in the 1938 World Weightlifting Championships.

As a bodybuilder John made an enormous contribution to the sport. It was not just his significant wins like 2 times Mr. America, Mr. Universe and Mr. USA but John Grimek was a long standing member of York Barbell Club interviewing all the top strength athletes and was at the editor of Muscular Development magazine for many years.

John Grimek stands 5'8" tall and competes at around 200 pounds but his training was always designed to increase strength. Despite John's undefeated record he trained conservatively never cycling his workout schedule always sticking to the basics. For years John stuck to basic training using movements like power cleans and snatches. However the John Grimek routine listed below is specifically to increase muscle mass training three times a week that does not include cleans or snatches.

John Grimek Workout Routine

John published many training programs as an editor of a muscle magazine but they all stressed the importance of the basic compound movements.

Training three times a week with a full days rest after each workout was the best way to increase strength and muscle size according to John. The workout below demonstrates how John was committed to sticking with the basics to build a solid foundation of strength.

Bench Press: 3 X 10 reps
Chin-ups or Pull-downs: 3 X 10 reps
Military Press: 3 X 10 reps
Barbell Curls: 3 X 10 reps
Squats: 3 X 10 reps
Standing Calf Raises: 3 X 10 reps

Dips or Incline Press: 3 X 10 reps
Barbell Rows or D/B Row: 3 X 10 reps
Shrugs: 3 X 10 reps
Single Arm Preacher curls: 3 X 10 reps
Leg Curls: 3 X 10 reps
Abs: 1 X 50 reps

Chin-ups or Pull-downs: 3 X 10 reps
Military Press: 3 X 10 reps
Incline D/B Curls: 3 X 10 reps
Front Squats: 3 X 10 reps
Stiff Legged Deadlifts: 3 X 10 reps

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