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Clarence Speaks to MBA Students at Univ. of Texas

R. Britt Freund (PhD), an energetic and very fit 40-year-old Dean and Professor at the University of Texas (Austin), recently introduced a lifestyle fitness elective as part of the UT Evening and Executive MBA programs. He plans to offer a Cooper-Clinic style health and fitness assessment to interested students, including a customized diet and exercise prescription. Dr. Freund plans to personally introduce the students to the basic arguments for brief, high intensity resistance and aerobic training. “This will clearly be a one-of-a-kind program in the US and probably the world,” he says. “These are precisely the kinds of people that could influence opinion and practice as they work their way up in corporate America. I feel like an evangelist, converting the barbarians.”

As part of the MBA FIT program, Dr Freund distributed copies of Lean For Life and Challenge Yourself to 1st and 2nd year students in the Executive MBA program and 2nd and 3rd year students in the Evening program. He also asked Clarence to speak to each group about lifetime fitness in separate presentations in Austin and San Antonio.

In accepting, Clarence complimented Dean Freund on his vision and knowledge. “MBAs, like lawyers, probably spend most of their time taking care of other people and tend not to see the merit in taking care of themselves until it’s too late,” he responded. “Introducing them to high intensity weights and aerobics would be a wonderful bonus.”

In well-attended presentations on August 19 (Austin) and 27 (San Antonio), Clarence explained his approach to diet, aerobics and weights. In his 50+ years of training, he told the MBA candidates (male and female, average age 28-32), he has seen the gap between those who take care of themselves and those that don’t widen with each passing year. “It’s like a ever growing V,” he said.

What’s more, he said, eating sensibly and taking time to exercise made him a better student, better lawyer, better writer, and better at everything he has attempted. He assured the students it would do the same for them. “It will make you more productive and creative,” he promised.

Clarence gave the students many tips on diet and exercise. Staying fit is far easier than people are led to believe, he told them.  

Enjoyment is the key, he emphasized in closing. It’s unrealistic to expect anyone to stick to a diet or exercise program they don’t enjoy. “There’s no need to ever be hungry or eat foods you don’t like,” he said. “Find a sport or activity you enjoy,” he urged. Set goals and challenge yourself to improve. Never be satisfied to maintain. That’s the way to stay motivated, he told the MBA candidates.

At both locations, the Q & A that followed lasted about as long as the main presentation. Almost everyone had a question or two. Clarence enjoyed the exchange and the audiences seemed to as well.

We wish Britt every success with the MBA FIT program and thank him for the opportunity to participate in such a worthwhile curriculum. 

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      Clarence Receives Award and Painting at AOBS 20th Reunion--Addresses Banquet

After being a member and interested observer since 1988, Clarence attended the 20th Reunion of The Association of Oldetime Barbell and Strongmen as one of two honored guests; the other was Olympic lifting great and pioneer strength coach Clyde Emerick. In a banquet hall packed with more than 300 Iron Game notables and enthusiasts, AOBS President Artie Drechsler presented both Clarence and Clyde with The Vic Boff Award. The beautiful commemorative plaque given to Clarence and the inscription are shown below:

Presented to








Your demonstration of the ultimate in long term muscularity

and fitness through a healthy and natural diet and exercise has

earned you our greatest esteem and admiration, and,

Winning your height division in the "Past-40" Mr. America and

Mr. USA after beginning bodybuilding late in life, represents a

role model for the iron game.

Your many publications advocating healthy exercising and diet

have provided much needed inspiration and information

worldwide and have indelibly placed your mark on the health

and iron game fields.

With appreciation for your great talent and dedication,

we proudly confer our highest achievement award, the


on this day of Saturday, June 28th, 2003.




Saddle Brook Marriott, New Jersey

Artie Drechsler, President

Johnny Mandel, Chairman


In keeping with the tradition of the association’s highest achievement award, Clarence was also presented with a painting of himself by portrait artist and AOBS member Jim Sanders. This is a photo of the wonderful likeness.

Clarence addressed the banquet. His brief remarks follow:


It doesn’t get much better than this!

When I was a kid struggling to C&J 300, I never thought I’d be sharing an award with Clyde Emerick, who was doing 400. Believe me, Clyde, it’s my pleasure to be up here with you. Congratulations.

The first person I want to thank is my wife Carol. This award belongs to her every bit as much as to me. I wouldn’t be standing here without her. She’s helped and supported me every step of the way for the last 35 years. About the only thing I do better than she does is workout – and that’s a close call. Stand up, Carol, and let people see you

Naturally, the first person I called after Artie told me about the award was Carol. She was thrilled, of course, just as I was. She laughed and said: "You finally peaked." I don’t remember if she said it’s bound to be down hill from here, but that was the implication.

One of her many jobs, of course, is to keep my feet on the ground.

I never expected to get The Vic Boff award or anything like it. I’m humbled and honored.

Thank you, Artie and thanks to your selection committee.

Thanks, Fred (Yale) for the great introduction.

Thanks, Jim (Sanders), for the wonderful portrait. I’ll treasure it always.

I also want to thank Wayne and Tina Gallasch for preparing the video clip for this occasion – and proving that I really do have a biceps. They live in Australia and couldn’t be here tonight, but asked me to give their best to everyone.

One more person I’d like to thank is my friend Father Jim Schwertley, who is here tonight. Jim, please stand up and let people see you. Jim was the first world class bodybuilder I ever saw.

It was about 50 years ago in the locker room of the Albuquerque YMCA. I’ll never forget it. He had arms, pecs, abs, the whole package. It was like seeing Popeye in the flesh. He was living proof that the physiques in the magazines were real. He showed me what was possible, made me a true believer. Thanks for the inspiration, Jim.

In closing, I want to tell you why this award is so meaningful to me. Picking up a barbell was the best thing I did for myself as a young boy. I believe it’s one of the best things any young person can do – because it teaches how tremendously satisfying it is to set a goal, work hard, and then succeed.

That pattern has worked for me in every thing I’ve done – in and out of the gym. I believe it will work for others as well. It’s a wonderful thing for a person to learn early on that they have the power to shape the course of their life – to make things happen.

So there’s no group I’d rather be recognized by than one dedicated to remembering and celebrating barbell men and women and the benefits of physical culture.

I regret that I never met your founder Vic Boff, but I want to take this opportunity to thank his widow, Ann, for their many contributions to the Iron Game we all love.

Thanks to you all. I love being here with you.

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Clarence to Receive AOBS Highest Achievement Award

The Association of Oldetime Barbell & Strongmen (AOBS), which brings together distinguished strength and physique stars from around the world, will hold its 20th annual reunion dinner in June in Saddle Brook, NJ. As in previous years, the group will recognize several people for their contributions to the Iron Game and physical culture.

Vic Boff, who conceived and nurtured the annual celebration of strength and health, passed away last November. Highly respected and much loved, Boff will be the primary honoree.

As a tribute to its founder, the AOBS’s "Highest Achievement Award" will be renamed "The Vic Boff Award."

The two people to receive the newly-named "Vic Boff Award" are from the fields of weightlifting and bodybuilding.

The weightlifting honoree will be 4-time national champion and former world record holder Clyde Emerick, who went on to become a pioneer in the strength coaching field. Clyde started with the Chicago Bears in 1960 and continues his work with the Bears today. "In the fickle and stressful world of professional sports, a stay of that length with one team speaks for itself," said the AOBS newsletter in announcing the 2003 honorees.

"Our bodybuilding honoree is the legendary Clarence Bass – Mr. ‘Ripped’ himself," the newsletter said. After noting Clarence’s career in weightlifting and his bodybuilding victories, the newsletter continued: "Perhaps Clarence’s greatest contribution to the Iron Game and to physical culture has been the instruction of others on the subjects of a healthy diet and proper exercise for one’s entire life. Clarence’s many books and a new video have literally reached many thousands around the world with his prescription for healthy living and his audience will no doubt continue to grow."

Needless to say, Clarence is humbled to be recognized by the AOBS, especially after reviewing the list of 50 or so previous recipients. John Grimek was the first to be presented the group’s "Highest Achievement" award, in 1986. Grimek is not only considered the greatest combination Iron Game athlete – bodybuilder, weightlifter, strength performer – he’s may be the most revered Iron Game personality of all time, having inspired millions. That says it all. AOBS award winners are truly a "Who’s Who" of the Iron Game and physical culture. (For more about John Grimek, see article 25 in our Personalities category.)

"I never expected it," says Clarence. "It’s a wonderful honor."

(For more about the AOBS, including how to become a "supporter," see "Publications About Past Iron Game Greats.")

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Former Fat Guy Interviews Clarence

On May 19, Rob Cooper interviewed Clarence on the Former Fat Guy show. The neat thing is, this is internet talk radio; you can listen any time you want. Simple go to www.fitwisewell.com and click on "Past Guests." In addition to Clarence, you’ll find interviews with Bill Pearl, Monica Brant, Udo Erasmus and many other interesting guests. The interviews run a full hour, so there’s time to get to know each person a little bit and develop topics. You can also see who’s coming up. Rob has a new guest each week.

Rob, himself, has an interesting story to tell. In January 1990, he topped the scales at 475 pounds.

Unbelievable as it sounds, he lost almost 300 pounds in a little over three years – and kept the fat off. He got down to 187 and then put on more than 50 pounds of muscle. He now weighs 230 with 9% body fat and looks like a bodybuilder. He’s as inspirational as any of his guests, perhaps more so. 

You can read all about Rob's transformation on his website. "Sometimes I think I should have put on another 25 pounds just so I could say I was 500 pounds," he now jokes. But you can bet it was not funny at the time.

Rob is a great guy, with a great story and a great format. He’s looking for additional sponsors. If you’re interested or know someone who might be interested, contact him at rob@formerfatguy.com. He also welcomes suggestions for future guests or topics related to health, fitness, nutrition and wellness.

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Ripped Enterprises, P.O. Box 51236, Albuquerque, New Mexico 87181-1236 or street address: 528 Chama, N.E., Albuquerque, New Mexico 87108, Phone (505) 266-5858, e-mail:  cncbass@aol.com, FAX:  (505) 266-9123.  Office hours:  Monday-Friday, 8-5, Mountain time.  FAX for international orders: Please check with your local phone book and add the following: 505 266-9123

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