Mike Mentzer

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Mike Mentzer (November 15, 1951 – June 10, 2001) was an American former IFBB professional bodybuilder, businessman, and author.

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Bodybuilding career

Mike Mentzer started competing in local physique contests when he was eighteen. His first contest was in 1969. In 1971 he suffered his worst defeat, placing 10th at the AAU Mr. America, which was won by Casey Viator. Mentzer considered his presence at this contest important later on, as it was here that he met Viator who gave Mentzer the contact information for his trainer Arthur Jones. After a layoff of a few years, he returned to competition in 1975 at the Mr. America, placing third behind Robby Robinson and Roger Callard. Mentzer went on to win that competition the next year, in 1976. He won the 1977 North America championships in Vancouver, British Columbia, and competed a week later at the 1977 Mr. Universe in Nîmes, France placing second to Kal Szkalak.

In 1978, Mentzer won the Mr. Universe in Acapulco, Mexico with the first and only perfect 300 score. He became a professional bodybuilder after that 1978 Universe win. In late 1979, Mentzer won the heavyweight class of the Mr. Olympia, again with a perfect 300 score, but he lost in the overall to Frank Zane who was awarded the title for a third time that year. In the 1980 Mr. Olympia he placed fourth (in a tie with Boyer Coe) behind Arnold Schwarzenegger, Chris Dickerson and Frank Zane. He retired from competitive bodybuilding after that show at the age of 29. He maintained that the contest was rigged until the day he died, and never said he thought that he should have won, but that Arnold shouldn't have, though he eventually got on good terms with Schwarzenegger.[citation needed]

Bodybuilding philosophy

Mentzer was an Objectivist and he insisted that philosophy and bodybuilding are one and the same. He said "Man, is an indivisible entity, an integrated unit of mind and body." Thus, his books contain as much philosophy as they do bodybuilding information.

Mentzer took the bodybuilding concepts developed by Arthur Jones and attempted to perfect them. Through years of study, observation, knowledge of stress physiology, the most up-to-date scientific information available, and careful use of his reasoning abilities, Mentzer devised and successfully implemented his own theory of bodybuilding. Mentzer's theories are intended to help a drug-free person achieve their full genetic potential within the shortest amount of time.[1]

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