Iron Vic Speaks!

  1. Chocolate addict seeks help
  2. Weekly frequency
  3. Guy flicks
  4. Quick energy from nutrition
  5. Best back of all time?
  6. How to eat 10,000 calories and not get fat 

By Iron Vic Steele 

Mr Steele, 

I have a real craving for chocolate.  I have been able to stop eating all junk food, high fat foods and processed foods – but it seems the more I dropped the other bad foods, the worse my chocolate addiction became. I suppose it is some sort of compensation thing where subconsciously I ‘reward’ myself with chocolate for not eating the other bad stuff. I lift weights three times a week and ride my bike for 30-minutes in the morning. I am 20-pounds overweight. I dropped ten pound so far by cleaning up the eating as much as I have. Do you have any helpful hints for getting past this chocolate addiction? 

Cleo, Detroit

Funny you should ask because Parrillo Performance Products has just came out with a new powdered shake product called Chocolate Fix™.  The name says it all; this is likely the most intensely chocolate of all the Parrillo products. My favorite flavor is chocolate almond coconut.  This potent product is aimed right at those with a “chocolate problem,” those looking to be rid of the habit.  John Parrillo developed a very cool and extremely effective “chocolate substitution” strategy many years ago. John had the self-iron-vic-weightsidentified chocolate addicts “switch out” real chocolate for sweet-tasting Parrillo chocolate-flavored nutritional supplements. This approach has been used with tremendous success by Parrillo Certified Personal Trainers nationwide for decades. The Parrillo game plan for our chocolate substitution program is simple; work your way through the vast Parrillo product menu and find the sweet chocolate treats that appeal to your taste buds. Our strategy for weaning the sugar-addicted off the chocolate (evil stuff for those seeking to get lean) is to eat chocolate supplements at each and every meal. For example:

  • Meal 1–6am
    • oatmeal mixed with chocolate Hi-Protein™ powder, egg whites, CapTri®
  • Meal 2–9am
  • Meal 3–noon
    • chicken, rice, salad, Parrillo chocolate muffin
  • Meal 4–3pm
    • Chocolate 50-50 Plus™, Parrillo chocolate Soft Chew™ bar (post workout)
  • Meal 5–6pm
    • skirt steak, potatoes, asparagus, Parrillo chocolate cake w/icing
  • Meal 6–9pm
    • Parrillo Hi-Protein™ chocolate shake, Parrillo chocolate Contest cookies

Get the idea? By switching out harmful sugar-drenched chocolate for potent, powerful, healthy Parrillo supplements, you feast on treats that taste like chocolate yet contain no sugar. Thus we wean ourselves off their sugar addiction. Insulin bursts subside, insulin receptor sites are re-sensitized and blood sugar is allowed to normalize. Once the addiction is overcome, body fat begins to melt by the bucketful. Load up on Parrillo chocolate supplements and let us be rid of the chocolate Jones that has been holding you back.


How many times week should a bodybuilder blast a muscle? I know Dorian Yates and Mike and Ray Mentzer, and all the Heavy Duty crew would train a muscle once a week. The majority of bodybuilders will attack a muscle twice weekly – usually switching exercises. Arnold and Franco, Robbie and Zane, all the big stars of the 70s would work the same muscle THREE times a week! So which is it? Which frequency is best? Why? 

Confused, Corpus Christi

In bodybuilding, none of the three frequency strategies really trump one another. All three frequencies work in the right hands handled the right way. Yes, Yates and the Mentzer boys only trained once a week, but the trade-off was the staggering poundage they needed to use in order to make a minimalist program work. These guys trained like competitive powerlifters, power bodybuilders so go ahead and throw massive Ronnie Coleman into this camp; he qualifies with his 800-pound rep squats and 700-pound rep deadlifts. Generally speaking, most bodybuilders (a fact you point out) train each body part twice a week. At the other extreme are those bodybuilders that favor a super-high-volume training approach where each muscle is hit three times weekly. The giants of the 70s got great results from this approach; that is an indisputable fact; the problem was, it was impossible hold a real job or have a normal family life training this much – most often, guys like Arnold and Robbie, used the double-split routine to squeeze it all in. They came to the gym twice a day. At his peak, Schwarzenegger was performing 700 (!) sets of weight training per week – and putting in 20 + hours per week on the gym floor lifting weights.

You should mix and match, rotate training frequencies on a periodic basis. If you are a regular bodybuilder, you are likely hitting legs and shoulders on Monday and Thursday, chest and triceps on Tuesday and Friday and back and biceps on Wednesday and Saturday. If you get stagnant, consider switching to a Yates-inspired, low-volume high-intensity approach for 6-8 weeks. I cannot in good conscience recommend the Arnold super-high volume approach, unless you are independently wealthy and with loads of free time on your hands. Switching back and forth between once a week and twice a week is a really good progress-goosing strategy. Think of frequencies as tools in a toolbox – a hammer does not trump a screwdriver and low-volume high-intensity training does not trump high-volume moderate-intensity training. Don’t get stuck in a single frequency mode.


What are your top five “guy movies” of all time? Don’t think or ponder – just respond with the first five movies you will watch repeatedly. 

Thor, Vienna

The Godfather (all of them count as one,) the Dirty Harry movies (all of them count for one – got that punk!) Blazing Saddles (the most politically incorrect movie in history) Death Hunt (The Bronson movie that he should have gotten the academy award for) and Apocalypse Now (right up my twisted alley.)

Honorable mentions go to Zoolander, Casino, GoodFellas, The Wire (cable series,) and MI-5 spy series.

Hello Sir! 

Is there any particular nutritional supplement you would recommend for a competitive racquetball player?  During our “season,” I will play 3-4 45-minute all-out matches per week and practice a lot in between. I am ripping hard and running, sweating like a pig 10 hours a week, between the matches and the training for matches. As you’ve likely figured, I am skinny and tall and lean. I am 6-3 and weigh 170 and can cover a lot of RB court with my wingspan – but four weeks into the 10-week season and I am dragging ass – any supplemental tips? I am feeling beat up and worn down and we got a long way to go! 

Vince P.  Jonestown

I would carb load using Pro-Carb™ and 50-50 Plus™. Pro-Carb™ is pure energy; this is a maltodextrin-based carb powder that can “spare glycogen” if consumed right before a practice or match. As soon as you finish a practice session, drink a 50-50 Plus™ shake; half protein and half carb, this replenishment shake is devised specifically as a post-workout healing and repair accelerator. After every training session and after every match, drink a double serving of 50-50 Plus™. Keep the dry powder in a Tupperware shaker and activate it with cold water from a water fountain as soon as the training session is complete. I would also drink a Pro-Carb™ shake one hour before training, this is classical carb loading. Stuffing muscle glycogen stores extra full in anticipation of an exhausting workout or gruelling competition. Parrillo supplements taken at strategic times throughout the day will eliminate fatigue and burnout.


Who has or had the greatest back in the history of bodybuilding?                                                                       

Francois, LA

Well that is a loaded question. Each man’s back would need to be judged in relation to the standards of the day and not against today’s monster men. The first great back I ever saw was Sergio Oliva, he stood 5-9, weighed 235 with a 29-inch waist, 29-inch thighs and 20-inch arms. He had an “arms overhead” back pose that highlighted his gigantic, ripped traps and erectors. Robbie Robinson had a great back, wide and ripped and thick atop a miniscule waist. Arnold had a great back; he was a 600-pound deadlifter and it showed; Franco had a better back with the greatest lat spread in the history of bodybuilding. Bertil Fox had a monster back. Dorian Yates of course – though I thought Dorian’s relaxed back was the best ever while his flexed back was less impressive.  Ronnie Coleman has a monstrous back due to his 800-pound deadlifts and 450-pound rep rows. Those are the guys that come immediately to mind. Bodybuilders with great backs have a training history that includes a lot of super heavy deadlifting, rows and power cleans; brutal back exercises are the only exercises that can stimulate the powerful and stubborn erectors, trapezius, rear delts, rhomboids and lower lats.  Most bodybuilders devote 100% of their “back training” to the upper lats. The upper lats are stimulated with chins, pulldowns, seated rows, and all the other fun and favored bodybuilding “back” exercises. Unless the bodybuilder begins to work the central back and lower lats, they will never, ever develop the “power muscles” that are needed to possess a truly great back.


How are you able to eat 10,000 calories a day and not get fat? Is this another Urban Legend? Parrillo is famous for “building the metabolism” and having his bodybuilders eat 6,000 + calories a day. How is anyone able to eat that much food and not get fat? 

Ralph, Glenmont 

You build up to it. You don’t just suddenly wake up one day and go from eating 3,000 calories a day of KFC and drinking Pepsi to eating 6,000 calories. We spread the food intake out, using five to eight daily meals, or “feedings.” The first step in building the metabolism is to clean up the food selections. Basically everything you previously ate is banned – from now on you exist on lean protein, fibrous carbs, starch carbs and very little long-chain triglyceride fat. You augment this strict regimen with potent Parrillo supplements. Shift to a multiple-meal eating schedule; five feedings a day (three square meals plus mid-morning and mid-afternoon “supplement meals”) is the minimum. Pro bodybuilders are eating eight times a day, including Ronnie Coleman who is getting up in the middle of the night to drink a pre-prepared protein shake. Once the “clean” calories are broken out into roughly equal amounts and spaced equidistantly apart throughout the day, the caloric consumption, initially quite low, is incrementally increased.

Over time and with great precision and patience we add more and more clean calories each successive week. This adding of clean calories elevates the already elevated metabolism. Clean food causes the digestive system to rev up; by adding calories and performing lots of cardio (and lots of lifting) we continually spike the metabolism.  We throw slightly larger logs (more food) onto the metabolic bonfire at each meal. We think long term, we take 12-16 weeks and within that timeframe a man can double his calories – and get ripped as he grows gargantuan. The bodybuilder must establish perfection and then stay perfect: he has to get into the metabolic “sweet spot” and once there he must stay there – one bad meal and he gets kicked out and has to go back to zero and start all over.  Once the bodybuilder successfully elevates the metabolism, they can amplify an already red-hot metabolism by throwing more logs, larger logs, (more food) onto the metabolic bonfire.

We have had female bodybuilders consuming upwards of 7,000 calories a day and getting leaner each week! Parrillo was (and remains) the leading expert in the use of regular food to induce anabolism, to accelerate the metabolism and for the promotion of healing and growth. If the calories are clean, the more the better – this assumes you are training as hard and often as required. Big 300-pound off season bodybuilders can handle 10,000 calories with the same relative ease a 150-pound bodybuilder can consume 5,000 calories. The classical Parrillo remedy for adding lean muscle mass: clean up the food selections, go to a multiple-meal eating schedule, augment with potent Parrillo supplements. Kick up the clean calories each successive week. Boom!