Bodybuilding Legends – Part XIV

Bob Gajda, Behind The Scenes Psych-Outs

If you've seen the movie Pumping Iron, then you already know how Arnold Schwarzenegger planted the seeds of failure during a breakfast with Lou Ferrigno. But that wasn't the first time Arnold played the psych card. Way back in 1967, at the NABBA Mr. Universe competition in London, he got his first taste of putting on attitude with freshly minted Mr. America Dennis Tinerino. All it took was a comment that he felt "Fantastic." That it was "the kind of day when you know you're going to win."

Bob Gajda shares another tale about Arnold's other acting career. Back at the Duncan YMCA, Sergio Oliva was training for the 1972 Olympia competition. He came in 2nd in 1970 behind the Austrian Oak, who'd made a special trip to the Duncan dungeon that year to see exactly what he was up against. This time, Arnold did his handy work by phone, casually mentioning that he was up to 255 lbs. and absolutely massive for the 1972 Olympia. It worked like a charm. Sergio tried to put on a few extra pounds of mass too close to the contest date and fell to the Oak again…who actually weighed in at 215.

For his part, Bob counts himself among the first bodybuilders to show up totally ripped for competitions. The October 1966 cover of Muscular Development displays his efforts impressively. On a steady diet of 6 to 12 steaks, plus eggs, cottage cheese, liver pills and protein powders, that was a quite a remarkable feat.
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