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Dave Draper

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Brother Iron, Sister Steel: A Bodybuilder's Book
by Dave Draper   

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Publisher:  On Target Publications ISBN-10:  1931046654 Type: 


Copyright:  Jan 10 2001

Barnes &
On Target Publications

Brother Iron, Sister Steel is a private journey into bodybuilding as only Dave Draper, former Mr. America, Mr. Universe and Mr. World, can tell it. Training techniques, exercise descriptions and nutritional strategies form the book's foundation, but what glues this book together are Dave's personal experiences and insights, humor and candidness, all of which speak to the heart and soul.

The ten years behind the counter and on the floor of my gym in California have signaled to me that everyone must exercise and eat right if he or she hopes to live a sound and fulfilling life. Too few do and far too many lives are in a shambles because of it. As conscientious gym owner, I am in a prime position to help the ailing, negligent and uneducated masses. And, certainly others and I do.

Brother Iron, Sister Steel was written to engage that edge of the population who dare to walk in the gym only to walk out because purpose and desire were missed. It was written as well for the tentative trainee who wanders the floor with desire, yet remain is without a clue. The intermediates who love the pump and burn and want to dig in deeper will, undoubtedly, identify with the facts, tales, fascinations and frustrations of muscle building as visited by an old time... still and always one of the boys. The young and the hardcore... about them I cannot be sure, only that in the years to come, should they endure, they will appreciate the content and philosophy and, perhaps, wish they had referenced it sooner.

Are you confused and have a question about your training? If there is an answer, chances are the answer is here.

Be strong. Dave Draper
I walked into the picture about the middle of the Twentieth Century when I wrapped a skinny, child's hand around a Hercules hand gripper. It lay there with its bright red handles and gleaming chrome coils amidst a heap of crushed display cartons, well-sampled wiry chest expanders and "how to" pamphlets exhibiting sketches of a handsome and rugged he-man with muscles bursting through his T-shirt. WOW. Wide-eyed and transfixed. WOW.

I was seven and in the sports department of Macy's in New York City Christmas shopping with my mother. Mom got off easy. The hand gripper was harmless enough, fit in my back pocket just right and was only a couple of bucks compared to twenty for the rather cumbersome basketball I'd been fondling earlier. Thanks, Ma, for that lovingly cruel steel device and the cable chest expanders to follow, that pinched my nose and tore hair from my head in clumps.

Queeze.Queeze ... Queeze.Queeze. That repetitious grating sound — music to my ears — became like dripping water to the senses of my family, not unlike an ancient Far Eastern torture. We all endured: I, the burn in the forearms and the anxious need to grow, and they, their loving patience and frazzled nerves.

Professional Reviews

Fearless Book Reviews
One of the perks of the reviewing biz is that one is occasionally sent delightful books that, because of one’s regrettably narrow range of interests, one would never pick up in one’s neighborhood bookstore. One would be all the poorer for having missed Brother Iron, Sister Steel that way. The “Blond Bomber” of weightlifting — also known during the 50s and 60s as Mr. America, Mr. World, and and Mr. Universe — has here set down his total wisdom and life experience in perhaps the most demanding (and surely the most exhibitionist) of all sports. So it’s no surprise that one finds herein some insider jargon, detailed dietary and workout regimens, and lots of pictures of the author at the gym, on old magazine covers, and working out with former training partner Ah-nuld (you know, the guy in the movies). What is surprising is how readable, entertaining, and even philosophical this volume is — and how solidly affirming of the author’s discipline: I, like everyone else, do not care to be ordinary. . . . I seek to arrange order and logic within my suggestions, both in exercise and menu. I offer you sound facts and establish sturdy landmarks to guide you, affirm you. Mostly, I don’t want this to be a textbook but a view of life as seen by me, a person who did, does and always will lift weights as he eats and breathes. Huzzah! Honest to God, this guy makes you want to grab your duffel bag and hoist yourself off to the gym even if the closest you’ve ever come to pumping iron is lifting a cream cheese-laden bagel to your lips. Draper has put together a fun, informative, and (I have to say it) brawny book that regularly slips up and tells you more than you would expect to learn: Good nutrition, like good training, is simple — learn the basics and practice them consistently. A little knowledge and a lot of discipline is the secret. Apply yourself diligently; look ahead, don’t look back and don’t look for shortcuts. There simply aren’t any. Good nutrition?? Sounds like the secret of life to me! — P. Miller Fearless Book Reviews November, 2000

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