“ Muscle Wonder”
By Joe Carrero
When I began creating my web site, www.JOECARRERO.COM, my intensions were to catalog and tell a story of a young man growing up in New York with an abundance of optimism, drive, confidence, courage, determination, discipline and most of all, dreams. Aspirations of being the absolute best at something; something that would receive the rewards of the labor put forth; Success, Admiration, and World Recognition. The details of this story will be told in my upcoming book that I am in the process of writing; however, anyone who reads this entry of my web site can consider this an introduction to my upcoming book. As I mentioned in my very first Newsletter, “Champions”, I had a very humble beginning when it came to the sport of Bodybuilding; I was 5’4” and weighed a fragile 93lbs. at the age of 13 ½. Arnold Schwarzenegger, Frank Zane, Franco Columbo, Lou Ferrigno, Ed Corney, Robbie Robinson, Danny Padilla and Leon Brown, to name a few, were all at the “top of their game”, and I looked up to them for their knowledge; they are some of the Pioneers and Greatest Bodybuilders that have ever stepped foot on a Posing Dais. My loving parents Joe Sr. and Peggy had purchased my first 110lb. Weight Lifting set for me at this age; it served me very well; the first tool used to create the most Incredible Physique that I could have ever dreamed of creating, all with my hard working hands and unsurpassed determination!
As I began to become stronger, bigger, and witnessed the beginning of the transformation of what was once my fragile Physique, I was ready; it was time to become a member of a real Gym with a variety of equipment to isolate every muscle group in the body from Biceps to Quadriceps, a Gym that had the smell of sweat that was a result of athletes all doing the same thing; Weight Training like possessed Athletes to become The Best; Pumping Iron! I remember very vividly walking down New Dorp Lane in Staten Island, New York toward the only Gym on the Island; The Mario Strong Gym. I was told of this gym by an individual who I have the highest respect for in terms of his knowledge of Nutrition and Vitamin Supplements; Dominic Strong, the brother of Mario Strong! Dominic was the Manager of the Health Food Store on New Dorp Lane, and actually educated me and informed me of what the best Protein Powdered Supplement was at the time; a Weight Gain Powder. After all, gaining Muscle Tissue was my obsession. When I arrived at the door of the Gym, I was terrified; I had never stepped foot in a Weight Lifting Gym other than the home gym that I had set up for myself. I remember peeking through the front door; the door was covered with some sort of blue shade, but there was a crack that I could see through. I saw just what I had imagined in my young imagination; Men lifting weights that were Huge, and resembled statues carved out of stone by the great sculptors of Ancient Greece and Ancient Rome. They resembled what one can only imagine the Ancient Gladiators would look like preparing to go in to battle at the Coliseum in Rome, Italy. Now I was really intimidated! However, I knew that this is where I needed to be if I were going to fulfill my dreams of becoming The Greatest Bodybuilder Of All Time! I entered the Gym and met for the very first time someone to this day I consider a great friend of mine and an inspiration to anyone who has the privilege of knowing him, Staten Islands most recognized Mr. Staten Island Champion, Mario Strong!
After reading the very first Muscle Magazine Article written about Joe Carrero in Muscle Training Illustrated by Mario Strong, “Joe Carrero 15-Year Old Muscle Wonder”; visit www.MARIOSTRONG.COM to learn more about this Champion of Bodybuilding, Nutrition, Inspiration and Knowledge to better further your education on the sport of Bodybuilding, as well as overall Health and Fitness. The Web Site is a must see!!!
“Joe Carrero 15-Year Old Muscle Wonder”
By Mario Strong
You know, I’ve been involved in Bodybuilding many years. I’ve done all the training, tried all the systems, read all the literature I could on the subject. I’ve been to contests, seen movies and met just about every famous Bodybuilder who ever lived.
What I am trying to say is that with all my years in the sport, with all my knowledge and experience in training people, I have never seen anyone with as much potential as I’ve seen in Joe Carrero. This kid has the symmetry and lines of Frank Zane, while holding the potential to build the mass of Danny Padilla. All he needs is time!
I first heard about Joe in July of 1978. A member of my gym, The Mario Strong Staten Island Bodybuilding Club, said that he had a friend who was only 14 years old. He kept telling me how well built and strong his friend Joe was. From some of the things he was telling me I was beginning to think he was crazy. Finally one day Joe joined the gym. Well, I took a good look at Joe and realized that he had an unusual potential. Joe always expressed a positive outlook on life. He had that look of confidence that one day he would be on top. Time would tell.
Joe started training in August of 1978 at the gym. He worked out six days per week. It was the first time that he trained with a variety of equipment. Until then he had only used a Barbell and Bench set that his parents had bought for him. While other members were making good gains, it was nothing compared to Joes. The kid actually became stronger day by day. It was amazing, the other members of my gym wanted to know his secrets. If there was any secret for his tremendous gains it was his positive attitude. He believed in himself. He was only 14 and working out with 260 pounds in full squats, leg pressing 520 pounds and bench pressing 210 pounds for 3 sets of 8 – 10 reps.
It was October, 1978 and the WBBG Mr. Staten Island contest was approaching in May. About a dozen or so members in the gym started training hard for the show. The competitive spirit was in gym and it was suggested that Joe go in the show just to get the experience. Joe asked me about this and I said it would be a good idea that if he planned to go far in Bodybuilding competition he should get all the experience he could.
Joe’s training intensity picked up at an incredible rate. He went from a bodyweight of 155 pounds to 175 pounds in just five months. It was now February, 1979. Joe was 15 and training like a Professional Bodybuilder with 10 years experience. In whatever exercise he did you could see that he felt it within. He trained for a deep pure pump in every muscle group. Three weeks before the contest I checked his leg development and was disappointed. They had shape but lacked in size and cuts. I put him on a special program, emphasizing Front Squats and Heavy Leg Curls. The results speak for themselves. By contest time his legs were greatly improved; enough to get him several votes for the Best Legs award.
On the day of the contest the audience was amazed to say the least. Joe weighed a cut – up 150 pounds. Whether he stood relaxed or posed, he looked superior to most of the other competitors who outweighed him by 40-50 pounds. I will never forget the audience’s reaction to his Vacuum Pose. He actually pulls his Abdominals behind his Chest. It’s got to be the best in the world. I have never seen any better.
At the end of the Mr. Staten Island contest, Lou DeBella was the Overall Winner. He had good size and proportions, taking the Best Arms award in the Mr. New York City. Joe placed second which was very good considering he beat out Bill Cirelli who placed third and is a well known Bodybuilder on the Island. Joe’s night was just beginning. In the Mr. New York City contest he won Best Back, Best Abdominals and Best Poser awards which is a great accomplishment going against 78 other contestants competing for the same titles. Remember, Joe is only 15!
The future looks bright for Joe. He has all the ingredients to become a Champion. With his positive attitude and confidence in himself he can become the best in the world. It’s only a matter of time!