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Developing A Conan Physique


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#1 Orkin

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Posted 30 March 2004 - 08:26 PM

Clachneart for beginners "A Scottish sporting event resembling the shot put, but using a stone 7? inches in diameter weighing 20 pounds. A run of 7 feet 6 inches is allowed; a foul is called if the body touches beyond the rear vertical surface of the toeboard. Three throws are made; the longest is the one that counts."

Throwing the Stone
"In the game here illustrated which is called Putting, two sorts of stones are used, the light and the heavy. The first is about sixteen pounds in weight, the latter from twenty to twenty-four pounds; but the regulation differs in several societies. Sometimes a few paces run is taken to increase the impetus. We have seen a stone of twenty-two pounds thrown a distance of thirty?three feet, but it is often propelled considerably farther."

One can imagine a young Cimmerian boy tasked with throwing big rocks, or doing it to compete with other lads. Then striding into civilized lands impressively muscled - and packed with explosive strength.
? ?When I can not stand alone, it will be time to die,? he mumbled, through mashed lips. ?But I?d like a flagon of wine.?
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#2 budgie

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Posted 30 March 2004 - 09:07 PM

Glad to see your using Electric Scotland for your ifo, its a great site, aint it..

Yep, us Scots seem to like throwing things.. stones, cabers (tree trunks), hammers and even wellies (thats wellington boots to you :lol: )

It must be something to do with all that open space we have.. that and doing things to keep warm B)

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#3 korak

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Posted 30 April 2005 - 10:23 PM

It is a known fact that Robert E. Howard was a sports enthusiast. I was fascinated at a Howard Day in Cross Plains a couple years ago, when listening to Rusty Burke show us into Howard's yard where his garage used to be. There, Rusty explained, Howard had rigged some weight lifting equipment that he worked out with.

I guess Conan has been a source of inspiration for a lot of us. I started reading Conan when I was thirteen, and by the age of fifteen was running several miles a day. For my sixteenth birthday, I got my first 110 pound barbell/ dumbell set. Over the years, I have stuck to a regular routine of aerobics and weights, using such books as Arnold's Education of a Bodybuilder for my guides.

But I am curious what the experience of other Conan fans has been. Are there some really great sports that an average adult can take part in that develop a prowess similar to the Cimmerian and other macho pulp heroes? Should I be spending my time on fencing lessons? Or even archery? Knife throwing? Boxing? Wrestling? And what are the best sports to develop speed and coordination, as well as strength? Kung Fu? Tennis? Raquetball? Any ideas? What are some other fans' thoughts on this subject?

#4 Berserker

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Posted 30 April 2005 - 11:56 PM

Sounds familiar to me! :P

Joined the gym when I was 17 then really got into Conan (the first film) then started a weight training course. I did three of them, my weight is only round 120 pounds (55kg). But watching conan made me feel invincible! If you wana build strength, stamina and physic. SWIM, SWIM HARD. From the age of 5 I'v swam, swam at my peak four times a week and tough training. Gets you strong and fit and really helped with the weight training! But yeah killer conan hasn'y just inspired you to look good! B)
"In battle I'd rather face 10 men protecting there families and homes, than 1 with nothing to loose."

"You first smell your enemies breakfast on his breath when you clash, then a second time when you empty his guts onto the battle field."

"An enemies blood tastes sweeter than a 1000 honey covered whores."

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#5 korak

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Posted 01 May 2005 - 02:07 AM

Swimming, eh? That's a classic. Kind of the Weissmuller approach to macho. :rolleyes: I do love to swim. When I was a kid we had a big built-in swimming pool in the back yard. All summer as soon as I woke up I would just go jump into the pool to get woken up in the mornings.

Berserker, you say you joined a gym as a teen-- do you think that I need to join a gym to get a full workout? Or is it possible to get a thorough routine with just a home bench and a couple hundred pounds of free weights?

#6 Kortoso

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Posted 01 May 2005 - 02:42 AM

New Power Program by Dr. Michael Colgan is very good and applies very well to a practical barbarian physique...

#7 Swiftsteel

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Posted 01 May 2005 - 03:24 AM

When I was a kid I was always pretty active. I grew up in a small town in southern Ontario so all of us kids were usually out exploring in the local woods and farmer's fields all day long whenever we weren't in school. Even at like, 10-12 me and a few other guys were into Conan to the degree that we divided up the local woods into Cimmeria, The Pictish Wilderness, and the Nordheim and we would build forts and have all kinds of battles and such with wooden swords and garbage-can-lid shields. It was great fun! Hell...if I didn't think I'd get thrown into the loonie bin I'd do the same thing now at 30!!!

But anyways, yeah...I was always out running, swimming in lakes, building stuff, etc, etc. As an older teen-to-twenty-something when my family moved out west I didn't know a lot of people for awhile so naturally I spent a lot of alone time lifting weights in my room (admittedly with Conan as at least some of my inspiration) and worked myself up from a measly 130 lbs to about 180 of fairly decent muscle. Admittedly, work, partying (got a little bit of a 'beergut' now I fear!), and responsible adult life in general has softened me up some, but nevertheless I'm still partial to regular walks, I dig hiking out in the woods whenever the chance arises, and do enough physical labour during the week to keep myself looking half respectable.

#8 korak

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Posted 01 May 2005 - 03:40 AM

Swiftsteel writes- Admittedly, work, partying (got a little bit of a 'beergut' now I fear!), and responsible adult life in general has softened me up some, but nevertheless I'm still partial to regular walks, I dig hiking out in the woods whenever the chance arises, and do enough physical labour during the week to keep myself looking half respectable.


That sounds similar to the rut I got into for the past 15 years. I am about six feet tall, and am in fairly perfect condition under 180 lbs., but for all that time I started eating big meals and got up to about 250 pounds. I felt like Captain Kirk in Star Trek XII! :) I didn't look that bad since I was really working out a lot, but it made me feel uncomfortable in a swim suit, etc. This past year I went on a 2000 calorie-a-day diet and it took me a whole year to lose those 70 pounds! Finally I have reached my goal, and it is really dreamlike that I am back in the kind of shape I was in when I was a teenager. I had to get out my old Levis that I have not worn in 15 years. It also gave me a lot of personal discipline to eat to live instead of living to eat.

One important factor in my program-- every two weeks, or every five pounds, whichever came first, I would take one day off from the diet! Yes, yes... all the pizza and chocolate fudge you can eat! :lol: It enabled me to continue the regimen for the whole year.

#9 jimbo

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Posted 01 May 2005 - 03:56 AM

Korak,

I was into working out before I was into Conan. I wrestled in high school. After high school I trained in boxing and kickboxing. When I turned thirty I got into Conan and started hitting the weights harder than I had in any of my previous training.
For endurance I recommend the heavy bag. If you have never tried this type of training I think you will be impressed by the amount of endurance it takes and how your endurance will increase.
I use to train in fencing, Kendo and knife fighting with my brothers. They grew up (unlike me) and I no longer have a training partner. Kendo is great but it is very hard and very serious. Fencing is fun and a little easier to learn.
Whatever kind of workout or training you do, I have only two recommendations;

INTENSITY and DISCIPLINE!!!

#10 korak

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Posted 01 May 2005 - 04:30 AM

Jimbo writes- For endurance I recommend the heavy bag. If you have never tried this type of training I think you will be impressed by the amount of endurance it takes and how your endurance will increase.

You know, I had forgotten but I did have one of those, back when Clint Eastwood was doing those Every Which Way movies. It was a great workout. I took it out to LA with me, and used it for a long time as a weight bench to lie on to do my dumbells. I finally returned from Hollywood after a year, but all I had was a suitcase, and I had to ride the bus. I no longer even had my car! :)

#11 Ancient Ages

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Posted 01 May 2005 - 04:42 AM

Gymnastics is great for building speed, endurance and strength. So is wrestling (Greco Roman). However, neither of these activities will really get you looking like a bodybuilder. Depends what you want really. Conan was good at sword fighting, rock climbing, horse riding etc, so the only way to get good at that is to do it.

#12 budgie

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Posted 01 May 2005 - 10:36 AM

Wado Ryu katate works for me..

started up again last October after being away from it for 20 years, since sat a grading and passed.. that blacks only two belts off now..

The old belly is dissapearing slowly and my fitness levels are climbing all the time, heck, I even started jogging too. I feel better, I sleep better and life is good (wish I had more cash though :D )

Tried the weights and suppliment drinks years ago but I never seemed to gain any great degree of bulk.. I just got more toned which I cant compain about.. funny thing is the guys I trained with all those years back are now big fatties.. while Im not skinny (13 1/2 stone) Im in a lot better shape than they are, thats pride in itself..

As folks are already pointing out excersize regularly and enjoy it.. build slowly and dont put crap in your body that doesnt belong there..

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#13 Cadogan

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Posted 01 May 2005 - 12:02 PM

My brother's 7 years older than me, and he was already in to Conan, so I think I saw my first Conan comic when I was about 5. The other hero of my youth was Tarzan, so I spent my whole childhood fighting with wooden weapons, scaling cliffs, climbing trees, swinging on vines, etc. This gave me a good foundation, especially for upper body strength. Then the Incredble Hulk came on TV and I realized, wow, people could actually look like super-heroes.

So, then I started working out, and it's something I've been doing for the past 20 odd years. Check out this recent photo at the Colleseum.

Flexing in Rome

I've boxed, studied Tae Kwon Do, and played a multitude of sports. My main hobby, though, is sword fighting. (with wooden swords!)

On Guard

I belong to an international group called the Society for Creative Anachronism in which we selectively recreate the best parts of the middle ages. I regularly fight with sword and shield, spear, pole arm, etc. I throw knives, spears, and axes, shoot bows, and generally get to live all my fantasies from child hood while competing with other weirdos - er, I mean like-minded individuals. I can't really ride though, but the SCA recently instituted jousting, so I am hoping to learn.

If this sounds interesting, check out the action at the following link.
SCA Demo

There are also MANY historical combat societies out there now studying the surviving medieval manuscripts on sword techniques and treating it as a real martial art. (which it is!) If you're interested, I can hook you up with links and assorted contact info.
"But not all men seek rest and peace; some are born with the spirit of the storm in their blood, restless harbringers of violence and bloodshed, knowing no other path..." - Robert E. Howard "A Witch Shall Be Born"

#14 Berserker

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Posted 01 May 2005 - 05:17 PM

Hey killer, I dont think you have to have a full gym set to get a real work out i'v got a free weight bench and dumbells as well as a bar across the doorway to my room (for pull ups). Could work with that but having a gym 10 mins away on a bike helps :)

They got a pool there for swimming too!

Problem with body building/ wieght training is every ones an expert! Not once have I come across the same advice twice! Only thing I know for sure is diet is very important! I've heard guys say pial on the carb's others say protein. In the end I just gave up ate what I want and workout!

Anyone actually know a good diet to have while working out to look good?
"In battle I'd rather face 10 men protecting there families and homes, than 1 with nothing to loose."

"You first smell your enemies breakfast on his breath when you clash, then a second time when you empty his guts onto the battle field."

"An enemies blood tastes sweeter than a 1000 honey covered whores."

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The boys are back in town!

#15 korak

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Posted 01 May 2005 - 06:17 PM

Hey Cadogan--- nice photo, buddy! I WOULD NOT want to come up against you in the gladiator arena, with all your fighting experience. :)

Berserker writes-Hey killer, I dont think you have to have a full gym set to get a real work out i'v got a free weight bench and dumbells as well as a bar across the doorway to my room (for pull ups). Could work with that but having a gym 10 mins away on a bike helps
They got a pool there for swimming too!


That is true, although it costs about 25-30 dollars or so a month. I was inspired when I read Lou Ferrigno's book, because he said when he went to Italy to film his two Hercules movies, he did not have a gym handy where they were shooting, and he had to do his workout with nothing but two dumbells and a barbell. The exciting thing was that he was able to get into better shape than he has ever been just from that spartan routine, as is plainly seen whenever they finally get around to releasing them on DVD.

Still, I really like doing leg curls, and it is very hard to do those without a gym machine. But, like Arnold says, most of the exercises you are actually better off with free weights, since it causes you to have to be more coordinated and balanced than just working a machine like an automaton.

Berserker writes- Problem with body building/ wieght training is every ones an expert! Not once have I come across the same advice twice! Only thing I know for sure is diet is very important! I've heard guys say pial on the carb's others say protein. In the end I just gave up ate what I want and workout!
Anyone actually know a good diet to have while working out to look good?

I have no complaints about Arnold's books. I have tried several but he is truly the king and master of the genre. His gigantic Encyclopedia has got a huge amount of fascinating material on everything from exercises, to the history of bodybuilding, to steroids and the dangers of low-carb diets. Diet books are just as bad if not worse than weight books about never agreeing between them. While I was on my year long diet, I found that a high/ low diet was really helpful-- that is, what few calories I ate, I ate high nutrient/ low calorie foods. Even now that I have relaxed my caloric restrictions, it is very important that what little I eat is packed with nutrients. I try to get plenty of both carbs and protein, since carbs give you energy for aerobic endurance while protein gives you power for weights.

Some things I enjoyed on my diet-- Oscar Mayor fat-free dogs are about the lowest calorie way to get some good meat protein(including tuna); Healthy Choice low-fat popcorn is a really easy way to get a high fiber/ high volume snack(12 cups for 200 c.); the most delicious diet drink I found was Kroger sugar-free ice tea, in gallon jugs in the frigerated section (with the orange juice usually. ) If you haven't tried it, you should give it a taste-- I usually dislike diet drinks because I can taste the sugar substitute, but I honestly do not think that I could tell you the difference with this tea blindfolded, it is so sweet. Necessity is the mother of invention they say. :rolleyes:

#16 Jery

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Posted 01 May 2005 - 06:35 PM

I begun bodybuilding as I could lift up on my chest 50 kilograms. Lemme tell ya was it hard not to come into the steroids... All the pumped up with water guys said it's impossible to have success without it.

It's f#$%@^& hard I agree. But without this sh% after 4 years I can do 120 kg. :)

Edited by Jery, 01 May 2005 - 06:40 PM.

The Cimmerian made no attempt to match wits and intrigue with Thutmekri and his Shemitish partner, Zargheba. He knew that if Thutmekri won his point, he would insist on the instant banishment of his rival. There was but one thing for Conan to do: find the jewels before the king of Keshan made up his mind, and flee with them.
"Jewels of Gwahlur" by Robert E Howard

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#17 Berserker

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Posted 01 May 2005 - 09:15 PM

Just got back from gym and got a small booklet titled 'How to gain lean weight'

Basically say's eat complex carb's, good lean meat and veg. Complex carb's release energy gradually reducing sugar craves through out day. And avoid cakes, biscuits usual junk.

although remember reading somewhere a little chocolate doesn't do any harm. Oh killer whats the name of that arny book? thanks
"In battle I'd rather face 10 men protecting there families and homes, than 1 with nothing to loose."

"You first smell your enemies breakfast on his breath when you clash, then a second time when you empty his guts onto the battle field."

"An enemies blood tastes sweeter than a 1000 honey covered whores."

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The boys are back in town!

#18 Jery

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Posted 01 May 2005 - 09:39 PM

Diet?

Eat 5 times a day. Only wholegrain bread, rice etc (barbarian food!). No butter and sweet things.
The Cimmerian made no attempt to match wits and intrigue with Thutmekri and his Shemitish partner, Zargheba. He knew that if Thutmekri won his point, he would insist on the instant banishment of his rival. There was but one thing for Conan to do: find the jewels before the king of Keshan made up his mind, and flee with them.
"Jewels of Gwahlur" by Robert E Howard

I've had me more dirty women than most men ever had
AC/DC Bad Boy Boogie & M E

#19 korak

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Posted 01 May 2005 - 11:50 PM

I agree, Jery! Like Hercules, who loved to eat roast beef and barley bread, but didn't like stuff like cinnamon rolls.


berserker wrote- although remember reading somewhere a little chocolate doesn't do any harm. Oh killer whats the name of that arny book? thanks


Chocolate is my main weakness, it is one thing that I start to crave the most when I am dieting for a long time. Actually, I think it may be because of the caffeine in chocolate. I got addicted to caffeine back when I was working as a guard in a coca cola plant. They had coke machines that sold cokes for a dime, since it was the Coke plant. I drank one coke ever round, once an hour, for several months and became addicted to caffeine. Really stupid! :angry:

Arnold has at least three good books-

Education of a Bodybuilder was his first, and the first half of it is his autobiography up to that point. The second half is an excellent workout guide.

The New Encyclopedia of Modern Bodybuilding-- this is a huge phonebook sized book that is for bodybuilding fanatics, kind of their Bible.
I cannot recall the name of the other one, but all three of them are probably in print.

#20 Kortoso

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Posted 14 May 2005 - 12:38 AM

Are you trying to look like Arnold or be strong like Conan?

Check out
http://crossfit.com/
I think both Conan and Howard would feel at home there.