Tuesday, January 24, 2017

All American Gym Lakeland, Florida

Louis Baltz and Ken Snell of All American Gym
I found this photo today of Louis Baltz and Ken Snell on a Lakeland Ledger post about the iconic gym. It really blew my mind.

I began working out with weights at the All American Gym in 1980. In fact, I remember working out there the day after John Lennon was murdered (that will show you how old I am).

I remember the gym well. It was a "dungeon gym." You know, the kind of place where Arnold and Franco would workout at. Even today, this style is still preferred to serious bodybuilders and power lifters. The reason is the "big five" are promoted here - the squat, the deadlift, the bench press, the military press, and the barbell row. Its as simple as that folks. If you want to get big and strong, you have to lift big and strong.

Its hard to find places like this to work out at nowadays because the commercial gyms must cater to the masses and they have too many rules about deadlifting, working out barefoot, and so forth. At All American, that was never a concern.

I fooled around at All American for months without ever getting any bigger. That was until Louis began teaching me what to do. Then - I got big...REAL BIG! In fact, there were those that thought I was on roids. I was not. I was just young and full of testosterone.

That will ultimately become the prime focus of this blog..the raising of old guys testosterone. It can be done and the glory days can be captured. I am doing it and you can follow me along.

The year I spent at All American was a coming of age for me. I had just come off of a divorce and needed direction. Believe me, bodybuilding can get your body and mind in a state to make clear and wise decisions.

I had no idea that All American Gym is still in operation and that Louis would have been able to keep it going all those years. Wow! I am impressed.

When I started back working out six months ago (after decades of sedentary lifestyle), I thought back to what Louis had taught me. You know what - the old school way of compound movements still work if you want to get big and strong. If you want to stay skinny, join a CrossFit box. Simple. Have you ever seen an industructable looking big guy walk out of a Cross Fit box? I have not.

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