Cover Material

John Balik

This is the first issue of Iron Man, since we purchased it from Peary and Mabel Rader in 1986, to have an illustration on the cover—although it’s not the first Iron Man cover to feature an illustration. Volume 1, Number 1, published in 1936, holds that distinction, although it was called Super Physique for that one issue. Thanks to the talent of Ron Dunn, we present on this month’s cover a unique piece of art that captures Arnold Schwarzenegger in a way that no photograph could. It’s our lead-in to a preview of the A&E biopic “See Arnold Run” starring Roland Kickinger. The behind-the-scenes look starts on page 182.

Another visual first for us is the showcase of photographs by David Paul that begins on page 190. I’ve known David for more than 20 years, from when he was one of the Barbarian Brothers, and it’s with great pleasure that I welcome him to our pages, along with a story on him by Teagan Clive. David’s vision is unique. I believe it comes from the very strength of his physique and years of heavy no-limits training. His images convey the power of art in a way that transcends the subject, as the bodies become more that just muscle and bone. I hope you enjoy them as much as I do. This is truly a merger of art and bodybuilding.

Our survey results tell us that Iron Man readers depend on the training info they get from each issue to bring them better results in the gym. Beginning on page 132, we focus on the latest mass-building innovation in “The X Factor.” It’s an interview with Jonathan Lawson about his adventures with X-Rep training. X Reps are the single most important muscle-building concept to come along in years, and you have to try them. I’m happy to say that Steve Holman and Jonathan developed the technique at the IRON MAN Training & Research Center last summer. X Reps have the potential to seriously jump-start your progress, and feedback from the hundreds of early X-Rep adopters has been nothing short of astonishing. If you’re tired of the same old same old, this is a must read. (To get more info as well as past issues of Jonathan’s newsletter, visit

The Mr. Olympia is the pinnacle of IFBB pro bodybuilding. Ronnie Coleman came to dominate, and dominate he did. We have full coverage of the competition starting on page 220, but don’t forget to visit our Web site to get the greatly expanded story, including hundreds of images plus audio interviews by Lonnie Teper and Ruth Silverman. Go to or to The Internet enables us to expand our coverage in a way that’s not possible on a printed page. You’ll find video clips and up-to-the-minute breaking news plus slide shows and Flash features like Lonnie’s “Swami Predicts.” 

Visit the new and improved—and IRON MAN’s—and see and hear what the Web can do. Then let me know what you think. Send e-mail to me at