In 1997, Phillips was eager to expand his empire beyond the bodybuilding industry. MM2K changed from targeting the hardcore bodybuilder to the more mainstream exercise participant, and the July 1997 issue saw the magazine redubbed simply as Muscle Media .  While Muscle Media 2000 had a distribution of 500,000 copies per issue at its peak,  the change in direction alienated many traditional readers, and sales numbers reportedly declined sharply afterwards.   Publication finally ceased in 2004 after the EAS company was sold a second time.
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