How to be an Old School Bodybuilder!

What is old school bodybuilding?

Old school bodybuilding isn’t fancy and it isn’t complicated. It’s the meat and potatoes of building muscle and cutting up.

Old school bodybuilding isn’t all about drugs as it is about DISCIPLINE!

Old school is what built your body from the ground up to begin with, and if you stick to the old school mentality then you can have one hell of a body that almost ANY MAN would want, and ALMOST ANY WOMAN would admire.

Old school muscle isn’t loading up on thermogenics to lose fat; it’s dieting your ass off!

I’m seeing all of these guys nowadays trying to use every fat loss agent they can get their hands on, and STILL CAN’T GET AS SHREDDED AS GUYS FROM OVER 40 YEARS AGO!

I think somewhere along the way we lost discipline and life has pampered us and catered to a new breed of pussies just a little too much. I refuse to fall victim!

Old school bodybuilding is about enjoyment and being proud of your hard work, not totally miserable and walking around covered up all the time.

What the hell sense does it make to stay covered up all the time?

If you don’t like people looking at you then stop bodybuilding!

If you’re sick of people viewing you as nothing more than a zoo exhibit or a spectacle, then get something going for yourself and have something else to talk about other than your body.

You’d be awfully surprised at how people will open up to you when you actually ask them about THEIR LIVES!

The next time you say to someone “Hey, how you doing?” stand there and actually wait for a fucking answer!

Old school is about helping people, not walking around with a chip on your shoulder.

Old school is about whatever it takes to get the job done, even if that means only using a 20 lb dumbbell because you get a better squeeze than a heavy one you cannot handle with good form.

Old school isn’t about knocking someone down in the gym, or laughing at a beginner.

It’s about showing them the ropes and HELPING THEM OUT.

If you walked into a computer lab and knew nothing about working on PC’s, wouldn’t you appreciate someone who took their time to show you something really quick?

Old school bodybuilding is about doing what you need to get done in the gym and not neglecting your family 24/7.

It’s about your son or daughter being proud of their Dad because he isn’t like the rest of their peers fat fuck parents with no humor, motivation, or excitement in their lives.

It’s about having a day of the week where you can stray off the diet and go eat out and enjoy the scenery. I have a couple of my “hot spots” I frequent here in town, and it’s a nice change to sit outside and relax sometimes over lunch.

Old school isn’t your outfit and your matching headband, and it isn’t bitching sessions to anyone who will listen to you. If you aren’t in the gym to get progress and kill it, then there is no place for you around me.

There are ways to be friendly and shake hands, but then get to the workout!

Think of all of the conveniences we have in life that never existed in the Golden era.

For God’s sake, how many guys had to walk around with their own 16 oz bottle of water back then?

The drinking fountain was good enough for them and I highly doubt they preached 2 gallons of water per day to everyone near showtime. Yes, I’m sure they consumed more, but probably not as OBSESSIVELY.

Everything nowadays has to be just right for everyone.

Most people can’t even get their ass to a gym for a complete bullshit reason.

It’s a cop-out! They’ll tell you they’re tired, so is everyone else.

I have no time for excuses and that little voice in my head saying “Hey, maybe you’re just being a pussy” yells just a little bit louder to me than most people!

The time for weakness is when you sleep. It’s when you relax AFTER THE WORK IS DONE!

Pain is pleasure to me. Physical pain through hard work that promotes progress is the perfect release for mental pain.

I deal a lot with clients who suffer from PTSD. You can go to a Doctor all you want, you can talk and cry and get things off your chest.

But the problem is you cannot get those images out of your mind and shortly after you defuse at the Doctor’s office guess what? It builds back up, again and again.

If PTSD is you, get your ass into the gym.

The gym understands your pain, and whatever pain it brings on you then push it back harder to release all that built up shit you have on the regular.

I don’t care what “educated professional” you speak to, unless they’ve ever had an IED go off near them or had an RPG fly off 2 foot in front of their face, or had to shoot a kid with a bunch of C-4 on a belt, then I highly doubt they can relate to you.

“Tell you what Brian, here are some pills that are going to kill your sex drive and make you fat, and I’d like to see you back in here next week to cry to me some more.”

Gentleman, to that I say fuck all! I’d rather juice my mind out and destroy shit in the gym to defuse than cry to some Doc who could give a shit about me, but that’s just me anyway’s.

The gyms now may be flashy, but your mentality doesn’t have to conform. So I say get down and dirty and do it right.

Old school is about whatever it takes and doing the best you can on whatever you have.

With old school bodybuilding, pieces start to fall into place.

There isn’t as much to figure out; you eat healthy, plentiful at times, and just lift!

Until next time, train hard!


Check out these Old School Bodybuilding article from JDB:

Becoming The Bull ebook


23 thoughts on “How to be an Old School Bodybuilder!”

  1. my favorite article to date JD! keep up the good work brother. you’ve got a gift for honesty that these main-stream sources just don’t fucking understand. thanks for your words and thanks for your book too.

    • because meal plan is something he charges money for- it is mentioned in the “Train with john doe” section.
      bloggers are there to help people but not to kiss everyone`s readers ass and make meal plans for everybody

  2. Hi John..

    If you remember I used your techniques in BTB book to get to 76 kg from 64kg ( was 74 when I last contacted you) .

    Latey I m finding it very difficult to eat as I feel like puking sometimes.

    I cant eat simple carbs as something in them gives me large pimples on my face.

    I want to reach my goal of 84 kg by October 15th.

    Any tips would be greatly appreciated.

    Any appetite boosters etc.

    I am currently using

    6 egg whites 2 yellow raw
    2 scoop protein
    100 gm oats
    200 ml milk
    400 ml water

    2 times a day

    In blender and drinking but for last 13-17 days my weight hasn’t moved. I m getting stronger but not bigger. I know its cause my intake is low.

    Plz help

    • the zits are from the dairy, not the carbs. Increase food intake in other areas. no weight gain = more food. You puking yet? Nope, so keep eating

      • Yes sir. I ll do whatever you say.

        BTW included 3 whole eggs and 100 gm rice extra.

        Weight gone upto 78 kgs as of this article.

        It’s nice to see you are helping people like me who are confused by all these magazines and fake gurus.

        Thanks .

  3. I found your blog and am fascinated. I was diagnosed in February of this year and have lost 45 pounds so far. I need to lose 59 more. The dietician put me on 1600 calorie diet that has me losing more muscle than fat now. I cant afford a trainer right now and was fortunate to have one free session with my gym membership. She told me I wasn’t eating enough. So now I have increased my calories and especially protein. I also went two doing back and shoulders on Mondays with cardio for 20 min (walking on treadmill with hills as I have a replaced hip and bad knee), Tuesday I do cardio on my Wii fit, wed is cardio, legs and abs, Thursday is wii again, Friday is arms and chest and Saturday wii and Sunday is rest. I am a respiratory therapist and I am on my feet a lot. My Sugar levels avg in the 80s and my a1c around 5. I do not want to compete in body building but do want a well muscled body.

  4. Hey John,
    in the post for a better workout you say that you could leave your phone at home- so I guess you always use an ipod or mp3 player to listen to music in the gym?

    • no, I use my phone in the gym but I do not take calls unless its my wife, and if she calls it’s probably important because she knows not to fuck with me during my workouts. Only reason I use the phone now is because I have google play and can download music within seconds, I dont have time to hook up an mp3 to my PC and do a music search

      • At home I only listen to calm music mostly but I have mostly reached my genetic limit in the gym so I only listen to kickass music at the gym if I want to push even harder. My favourite kickass songs throughout the years were and still are:

        Amon amarth- War of the gods
        Linkin park- Dont stay
        Amon amarth – valhall awaits me
        Disturbed- Haunted
        Disturbed- I`m alive

        And almost all Instrumentals from Lamb of god

        what are your long time favourites or favourites at the moment?

        • My musical taste is so vast that one day it could be Lamb of god, the next day it’s theatrical music from 2 Steps from Hell, and the following day it could be 80’s music like John Parr or Billy Ocean. I listen to it all

  5. Excellent article! The gym is very therapeutic for me. I’ve worked in corrections for sixteen years. Dealing with shit-bags and lazy-ass coworkers day in and day out can really grind on my nerves and test my patience. Even though I’m tired as fuck after a long 12-hour shift I still hit the gym and kill the weights. I do this not only to build my body, but to decompress and get out my frustrations. My wife knows this is necessary for me and doesn’t complain, but it’s supportive. I’m a much happier husband and father when I walk through the door after hitting the weights.

  6. Hey Joe,

    Love your site. Came here last year when planning my first cycle and went for prop – bit of a failed cycle tbh.

    Just finished PCT for my second cycle.
    Sorted out my diet after about 4-5 weeks into the cycle.
    Original Cycle Plan

    W 1-12 Test Enth 300mg twice a week
    W 1-4, 10-12 Dbol 10mg 3x/d
    W 12-14 Break
    W 14 – Nolva 20mg a day for 6 weeks

    During cycle:
    Weight has shot up from 88 to 94.
    POWER and SIZE has increased massively. Feel a bit bloated and holding loads of water but as expected with the Dbol.
    Bench went from 110/115 max to 145 Monday. My wrists were literally shaking but felt incredible.- Maxed out 155
    Squat from 110/120 to 140 easy.. could have done more but my knee has issues so didn’t want to push it. – Maxed out 150
    Deadlift today my max was 160 these last 3 weeks.. Aiming 180/200… – Maxed out 175

    Problem is I got sick these last 2 weeks and with my diet being at a caloric deficit I lost a lot of weight whilst retaining some of the muscle mass.

    Still feel like my BF is a bit high and I know it is no where near as bad as last year but hate feeling my gut when I sit – bit of extra chub sitting there hiding my abs. Gonna keep dieting until Dec but wanted to go for a third cycle then – 12 weeks after PCT ends.

    Torn between running the same cycle again – given the gains, but this time not for so long. 12 weeks was a long cycle for me.

    Or Running Test and Clen?
    Or Test and Deca?

    I want something that will help burn some of that belly fat off whilst helping to keep muscle size?
    Any ideas?

    This is the beginning of my research – so just looking for advice.

    Training 4 times a week and on a strict eating plan from my trainer of only carbs pre and post workout and one cheat day a week.
    Thinking IIFYM may be a better long term option for me?

    • If you still have bodyfat like you are talking about then what I’d do is lean out as uch as you can now on your own before beginning another cycle. Forget Dbol or anything that retains water weight, on the next run I would be looking into test/anavar or test/winstrol. You really don’t need a high amount of testosterone while you are dieting, you can get by perfectly fine on 200-300mg/wk. I would include 1/2mg arimadex 3x/wk to prevent any estro conversion and diet my ass off. It’s almost all diet man, it really is

      • Hey John,

        Thanks for the advice your always solid!

        Just have some follow up questions.

        I am only looking to go back on cycle in December, currently on CLA’s, fat burners and dieting like crazy to get ready for summer.


        Cycle Option 1: Winny and Test
        Beginner Winstrol Cycle Example (10 weeks total cycle time)
        Weeks 1-10:
        â?? Testosterone (any ester) at 400-500mg/week
        Weeks 1-8:
        â?? Winstrol (injectable) at 50mg every other day (total 200mg/week) OR Winstrol (oral) at 30mg/day

        Cyle Option 2: Test and Anavar
        Beginner Anavar Cycle Example (12 weeks total cycle time)
        Weeks 1-12:
        â?? Testosterone Enanthate at 300 â?? 500mg/week
        Weeks 1-8:
        â?? Anavar at 30 â?? 40mg/day

        But need some advice on the actual cycle – got a couple questions:

        1) Which is the better cycle to go for?

        2) I know Anavar is “safer” but is Winstrol so dangerous that its worth paying almost double?

        3) Which Test to go for and at which dosage? Did Test Enth 300mg twice a week at 300mg twice a week for last cycle and loved the results.

        4) What is the ideal cycle time? Seen different resources saying 6 weeks, 8 weeks and 10- 12. To be honest 12 was a bit long for me so looking to keep it between 8 and 10. Thinking 10 as maximizes gains from the test?

        5) Personal preference which do you usually prefer / recommend?

        6) For PCT:
        SERM and AI wise would Arimidex and Nolva cut it? Or should I get HCG and Clomid.
        This is what I have found so far:
        AI and SERM
        Wk 2-8 Adex, .5mg ED
        Wk 10-14 Nolva, 40/40/20/20

  7. Hey JD, I have a problem with my right arm (precisely my right biceps) being smaller than the left one. I know that body isn’t supposed to be perfectly symmetrical, but I feel that the right biceps is noticeably weaker too. I’ve tried working it more then the left one in the last month but it seems like it didn’t grow one bit. It’s pissing me off to be honest. My right HAND has been injured but I don’t see how that could be related as injury was small bone fracture on my hand (fist), far away from biceps. My forearms seem to be symmetrical and evenly strong. Also I’ve noticed that my right (smaller) arm is more vascular than the left. Opinion, any tips?

    Thank you.

    • With most people (myself included) there is about 1/2″ difference in arm size between dominant arm and other arm. I would continue to work both arms the same and you’ll even out as much as possible over time

  8. Hey John, you should start a thread on the new division of npc, classic physique, I’m a physique guy but this new division is great for the guy that’s too big for Mp and too small for BB. I would love to here what type of cycles would be great for this, or if you have any advice on cycles for this division, I’m 5″8 and the max you can weigh is 177, so I can’t see just anyone being able to do this, like physique of course.

    • hahaha, damn looks like I’d be fucked on this one too!! I’m 5’9″ and come in around 210. I’m a heavyweight without a giant gh gut, but too much size for Men’s physique, looks like I’m still in no-mans land. Oh well, LOL. Let me look more into this and yes, a possible future article idea as well!! Thanks-JD


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