by Christian Duque
John Meadows was one of the most passionate, knowledgeable, and positive people I have ever met in the fitness industry. Writing about him in the past tense is very bizarre to say the least. I can’t say we were friends, but we were definitely acquaintances. He knew who I was and I definitely knew who he was. I’ve been a fan for years and always found his content very factual and innovative.
This wasn’t a guy obsessed with saying controversial things or standing up from others. His fame was the product of his vast experience and an eye for muscles. His support base consisted of fans and competitors alike. While some liked his physique, most wanted to choose his brain. He was a man who understood the basics of training, the wonders (and limitations) of the human body, and how far you could achieve a given goal.
While some guys can turn pro with relative ease, the Mountain Dog didn’t. His own health was a significant obstacle, he was older and, unlike many of his contemporaries, he had many duties that he could not give up. Nonetheless, Meadows was old school in his mindset. He was privy to the fact that good things come to those who wait. Maybe it didn’t always place where it wanted, but it would keep getting better. Whenever he failed, he used that experience as a learning opportunity.
These trials and difficulties helped him create a perspective that many in the bodybuilding world have agreed to. Because of this, John has always been sought after by the media, corporate and events alike. He was an all-round positive-minded, humble and open-minded gentleman. When he launched his own line, Granite Supplements, he pushed forward, supported the sport, the competitors, and brought products to the market that were better than anyone else. These are just a few of the many attributes that make this great champion, this legend, live on. Legends never die!!
At a time when everyone is a trainer and everyone seems to have their own style of training, John Meadows offered something completely unique. While many competitors tend to coach-hop, those who have worked with the Sennenhund in the past have stayed seated.
He didn’t have to advertise and beg for business. He did what he did and the results spoke for themselves. Anyone who has ever worked with John will tell you that he didn’t avoid the bush. A great trainer at this level is there for you directly. It might not be what you want to hear, but it is what you need to hear. Coaches like John won’t tell a person who takes two years to get on the national stage that they can turn pro in six months. Like I said, John wasn’t about smoke and empty promises. You have it all with Meadows. Your training, your supplements, everything was covered.
I met John years ago and we did a killer interview at the 2015 NPC Mike Francois Classic in Columbus, OH. At first I was very nervous. You must realize that I looked up to this guy, read his articles, and watched his videos. I would be a liar if I said I do this for all the guys whose bodies I admire. Many champions are either or. I either like their looks or I like what they say, but rarely do I like both.
John wasn’t the most beautiful physique, but he was the product of an indomitable spirit. I compare it to Jay Cutler’s or Branch Warren’s. Although he didn’t have the genetics to just look at the weights and grow, he was content with what he had. He has taken his condition to another level. He posed with a big heart. Not only did he love being on stage, he also lived for camaraderie with his competitors. He loved competition and fighting. That’s why so many fans always sat on the edge of their seats when he competed. At the same time, I think you would have a hard time finding a competitor who didn’t like them. This is because you can be a fighter (in competition) without fighting with people in person. When thinking of the epitome of the bodybuilder, the image of The Mountain Dog should come to mind.
When we did our interview, I was afraid that I would ask a stupid question. I’d done a fair number of written interviews and articles, and even worked for RxMuscle, but I was legitimately concerned that I was going to ask something that wouldn’t even get an answer. I was afraid that I would say or do something that would cause a sigh or a nod, or that he would laugh at me. I have to have a good poker face because years later I asked him about this interview and he always said it was a good one. The questions were well thought out and I did my best not to interrupt him. 20,000 views later, I still get positive feedback on Facebook and the message boards. It’s by no means my best work, and I can’t even tell you the last time I was so scared to interview someone, but it was a great moment in my career as a journalist. I’m really glad that fate allowed us to cross and that I manned myself and asked him for ten minutes of his time. Many people asked about John’s time and he complied.
If you think about how many press agencies John Meadows gave interviews to, that’s pretty baffling. But in addition to what he did in the industry, his own social media content offered fans a wealth of knowledge – no less for free!
If John was all about money, he could have made so much more of it. He could have billed for every word he spoke – and – people would have paid. But he wasn’t. He loved bodybuilding, he loved helping people, and he had a very noble heart. Unlike many in our scene who are obsessed with the world of material wealth, who brag about their wealth and are constantly trying to impress others, John Meadows chose to be humble, a true family man and a good ambassador for bodybuilding. We will really miss him.
At the moment, a GoFundMe is making the rounds. Almost $ 200,000 has been raised so far, all for John’s children. I encourage you to take a look. Whether you can post the memorial on Facebook, Twitter, Youtube or IG – that helps. Whether you can only donate $ 5, $ 10, or $ 20, it helps.
We lost a great man at a very young age and it is time we got together to help his family. That’s why we wanted to publish this article here at Iron Magazine. We wanted to let people know about the death of this legend and the fund, and let the world know that someone very important to us has been lost. We don’t know the cause of death, and frankly, that’s what’s farthest from us. I’m sure the vultures on social media will try to take advantage of this in time, but they’re soulless people anyway. Shame on you.
We would like to express our deepest condolences to the Meadows family and Mountain Dog fans around the world.