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Muscle: Confessions of an Unlikely…
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Muscle: Confessions of an Unlikely Bodybuilder (edition 1992)

by Samuel W. Fussell

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
1694127,984 (3.94)1
At age 26, scrawny, Oxford-educated Samuel Fussell entered a YMCA gym in New York to escape the terrors of big city life. Four years and 80 lbs. of firm, bulging muscle later, he was competing for bodybuilding titles in the "Iron Mecca" of Southern California-so weak from intense training and starvation he could barely walk. MUSCLE is the harrowing, often hilarious chronicle of Fussell's divine obsession, his search for identity in a bizarre, eccentric world of "health fascists," "gym bunnies" and "muscleheads"-and his devout, single-minded acceptance of illness, pain, nausea, and steroid-induced rage in his quest for the holy grail of physical perfection.… (more)
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Title:Muscle: Confessions of an Unlikely Bodybuilder
Authors:Samuel W. Fussell
Info:Harper Paperbacks (1992), Paperback, 264 pages
Collections:Your library
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Muscle: Confessions of an Unlikely Bodybuilder by Samuel W. Fussell

  1. 00
    Muscle Boy by Bud Clifton (SomeGuyInVirginia)
    SomeGuyInVirginia: The seamier side of physical culture.
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Showing 4 of 4
Dewey decimal = 646
  Alanstewart | Jul 24, 2018 |
When I see a book like this I expect one of two things; someone who isn’t really involved in the subject trying to write about what it’s like, or someone who is really involved trying to write. This is an account written by someone who was more obsessed and wrapped up in bodybuilding that most and also writes really well. It’s funny, scary, and really interesting. ( )
1 vote bongo_x | Apr 6, 2013 |
When I see a book like this I expect one of two things; someone who isn’t really involved in the subject trying to write about what it’s like, or someone who is really involved trying to write. This is an account written by someone who was more obsessed and wrapped up in bodybuilding that most and also writes really well. It’s funny, scary, and really interesting. ( )
  bongo_x | Apr 6, 2013 |
This is a fascinating first hand account of the bodybuilder lifestyle. The author gives a clear summary of all the hard work it takes to achieve a true bodybuilder look and how detrimental it can be for one's health. In "Muscle. Confessions of an unlikely Bodybuilder" Fussel details his own journey from book worm to impressively huge bodybuilder. The reader learns that Fussel's obsession with weight training is in part due to his own insecurity; instead of facing it and dealing with his issues he tries to put on an armor of muscle. This he believes will protect him from the outside world as well as his own inner feelings. Only after 4 years of hard work and unhealthy habits including some steroid use does the author realize that bodybuilding is not the cure all he once hoped it would be. When he decides to quit the sport he quickly loses his muscle size and in a matter of weeks is back at square one.
This book gave me a better understanding of the unhealthy aspects of bodybuilding and that anything taking to the extreme isn't beneficial in the long run. I really enjoyed the author's writing style and I would recommend this book to anyone interested in the sport. ( )
1 vote Lilac_Lily01 | Oct 2, 2011 |
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At age 26, scrawny, Oxford-educated Samuel Fussell entered a YMCA gym in New York to escape the terrors of big city life. Four years and 80 lbs. of firm, bulging muscle later, he was competing for bodybuilding titles in the "Iron Mecca" of Southern California-so weak from intense training and starvation he could barely walk. MUSCLE is the harrowing, often hilarious chronicle of Fussell's divine obsession, his search for identity in a bizarre, eccentric world of "health fascists," "gym bunnies" and "muscleheads"-and his devout, single-minded acceptance of illness, pain, nausea, and steroid-induced rage in his quest for the holy grail of physical perfection.

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