An Olympia Weekend In Vegas: Myron's Review.

The Men's Pre-judging and Finals, the Olympia Expo and a workout at Gold's Gym were all wrapped into one memorable weekend. Here's a recap of my time at bodybuilding's biggest event of the year in the one and only city of Las Vegas. Get the scoop...

The Men's Pre-judging and Finals, the Olympia Expo and a workout at Gold's Gym were all wrapped into one memorable weekend. Here's a recap of my time at bodybuilding's biggest event of the year in the one and only city of Las Vegas.

For the third year in a row my buddy, Mike Harris, and I went to the Mr. Olympia events in Las Vegas. It's become an annual tradition for us. Each year we've been able to cram more events and activities into our weekend.


In 2004 we made a whirlwind, one-day trip to watch the pre-judging and attend the Expo. Last year we made it to the Judging, Expo and Finals. Since the judging and finals were split between two days this year, we had an opportunity to take the time and train at Gold's Gym on Decatur. That's the same Gold's gym where Cutler filmed his latest DVD, "One Step Closer."


We left from our southern California, high desert town of Lancaster about 1:30 p.m. on Friday. That should have given us plenty of time to drive there, check into the prestigious Circus Circus, grab something to eat and get to the pre-judging. Traffic on the strip, of course, messed up our plans and we walked into the arena — without dinner — just as Victor Martinez was finishing up his compulsories.

Click Image To Enlarge.
Victor Martinez.
View More Pics From 2006 Olympia Pre-Judging Here.

The pre-judging was entertaining, for the most part, this year. A decision was made to combine rounds one and two without a break in between. That was a very good call as it made it more exciting for us to watch and I'm sure the athletes liked being on stage without walking off, which causes many of them to lose their pumps.

Click Image To Enlarge.
Everyone Waits While Dennis James Poses.
Combining Rounds 1 & 2 Made Sure No One Lost Their Pump.

View More Pics From 2006 Olympia Pre-Judging Here.

One aspect about attending a bodybuilding event, especially the Mr. Olympia, is the feeling of belonging. Nearly everyone in attendance is a bodybuilder or at least an avid fan of keeping in shape.

Guys with huge shoulders who barely fit in their seats would look out of place at a Dodger game, but at the "O," those guys are right at home — even if they all have to turn sideways to give the other broad-shouldered dudes next to them some space.

Gold's Gym

We had plenty of time on Saturday morning this year to take in a workout and we decided the Gold's Gym where Cutler filmed "One Step Closer" would be the place. After driving around for a little a while and making some useless turns here and there we finally found it. (Not that it was difficult to find, but Mike and I were having a knack for missing streets, exits and turns the whole weekend.)

Jay Cutler
Jay Cutler Wallpaper
The New Reigning Mr. Olympia!
Photo By SecondFocus.
Week #30 - 10/03/2006
1600x1200 - 1280x1024 - 1152x864 - 1024x768 - 800x600
480x640 - 320x240 - 240x320 - 160x160 - 160x120 - 128x128

The locker room looked just like it did in the DVD with the yellow benches and green lockers. I tossed my gym bag in a locker and grabbed my stuff and walked out to the floor. IFBB Pro Betty Pariso was posing for a photo shoot. She was in fantastic condition from competing in the Ms. Olympia on Friday night. She agreed to an interview later on at the Expo.

Click Image To Enlarge.
IFBB Pro Betty Pariso.
View More Pics From The 2006 Ms. Olympia Here.

I had been fighting a cold the entire week so I wasn't expecting to set any strength records during my workout, but I knew once I got going I'd have a great workout. Chest and arms were the muscle groups of choice to train that day. Near the end of my workout, my cell phone rang.

I rarely have a cell phone on me at the gym, but I was expecting a call from my brother, Brent Mielke, in Minnesota. He was competing in the Eagles Wings Bodybuilding Championships that day. He said he would call after the pre-judging to let me know how it went. He hadn't competed in 20 years and was trying his hand at the Masters Division. Brent said things went well and was expecting to take first or second in his class. I was elated.

After the brief call, I blasted triceps with skull crushers and dips. I threw in a couple sets of rope pushdowns for good measure.

Tornado Tornado Style Posing With Frank Roberson & Mary Alcorn.
Date: 10/10/2006

Frank Roberson 'The Texas Tornado' & fiance Mary Alcorn go over the secrets of great posing 'Torando Style!' Everything you need to know, from mandatory poses to music selection, is right here!
Video Show 43

Over by the tricep pushdown machines, Mike struck up a conversation with Jay, who owned the supplement store around the corner from the gym. He knew Cutler and was kind enough to give Mike a discount when he made a purchase after our workout.

Before I left the locker room, I could not resist hitting a few poses in the mirror by the sink and then walking to the mirror around the corner and hitting a few more poses. Somehow, I have a feeling I'm not the only person to do that, but maybe one of the few to admit it.

Do You Find Yourself Posing In Every Mirror You Come Across?

Yes, I Always Like Checking Out My Progress!
No, Never.

Mike bought a protein shake at the Gold's Gym juice bar and I had already started shaking up my own drink before I saw the juice bar so I drank my homemade concoction. We headed back to the hotel to clean up and then hit the Expo.

Protein Shake Recipes. Protein Shake Recipes.
Are you tired of drinking the same boring, bland tasting proteins shakes? Try these superb shakes and mix things up!
[ Click here to learn more. ]

The Expo

The Olympia Expo was held at the Convention Center again and, like last year, we couldn't find the place. Both of us THOUGHT we knew how to get there. I guess you could say we were just enjoying the sights of the city and wanted to soak up everything while we there. We weren't in any hurry so it didn't matter. We had plenty of time.

The parking lots in front of the Convention Center were, of course, full and we had to walk about two or three blocks to the overflow lots. Walking isn't that big of deal for hard-training bodybuilders unless you're carrying huge bags containing freebies from the many exhibitors.

Click Image To Enlarge.
Walking Isn't So Bad
Until You're Lugging Huge Bags Of Freebies.

View More Pics From The 2006 Olympia Expo Here.

I was planning on being picky this year and I wasn't going to take stuff I'd never use or wouldn't read. Last year Mike had purchased a case of bottled liquid proteins because it was a great deal. He ended up lugging the huge box around for about two hours. He was determined to not make that mistake again.

One of the first booths we stopped at was the Weider booth. They had a ten-pound jug of gainer protein on sale for $10. Mike couldn't pass it up. He bought it. Being the good pal that I am, I decided I was going to make sure we stopped at every booth, maybe even visit a couple of them twice.

I didn't have a game plan for making my way through the expo. One of the few things I wanted to do, though, was make sure I said hello to the guys at the booth. I talked with Bob, who had his World Masters belt proudly displayed on the table in front of him.

Click Image To Enlarge.
Bob Takes A Quick Break.
View More Pics From The 2006 Olympia Expo Here.

Bob is a great ambassador for our sport and takes the time to chat with everybody. I finally met Will, the guy I submit all my articles to via e-mail. I also saw Russ DeLuca again who I met for the first time at the Iron Man in Pasadena earlier this year. Before I left the booth, Will took my photo with Bob.

Click Image To Enlarge.
Myron & Bob.
View More Pics From The 2006 Olympia Expo Here.

People Watching:

    When I go to a mall or somewhere with large crowds of people, I like to take a break and just watch the people as they walk by. The Olympia Expo is an incredible place to people watch. (For people watching, the Expo stills holds a second seat to the San Diego Comic-Con, however, because that's one of the few places you can see overweight, 40-year-old dudes dressed in super hero costumes and Klingon armor! That's a sight to behold.)

Click Image To Enlarge.
You Can Find Some Super Hero Costumes & The Expo.
View More Pics From The 2006 Olympia Expo Here.

    It's a lot fun watching guys (or gals) walking around with their lats flared trying to make themselves look better than all the rest of guys walking around. If there's any type of mirror or window, they all have to check and see if their muscles look okay in the lighting of the room. (Oh, was that you I saw?)

Click Image To Enlarge.
Everyone Was Flexing & Showing Off.
View More Pros From The Expo Here.

    We ate lunch at the Convention Center and had a view outside of the sidewalk leading up to the front door. As we ate, dozens of men and women came by toting their huge bags. Nearly all of them had to sneak a glance at themselves in the mirrored windows, of which we were concealed on the other side.

The Booths:

    Many companies had IFBB pros or NPC athletes displayed, I mean seated at their booths. I found many of the pros to be very approachable. Most of them seem to really enjoy talking to the fans and were at ease shooting the breeze for a little while. A few of the pros and top-ranking amateurs, however, could use a little coaching on why they're getting paid to sit there. They might look good in the magazine ads, but fail miserably at customer relations. Enough said on that.

    Mike's main man is Branch Warren. He likes his physique and had to get a photo with him. Branch is very soft spoken and friendly — a true Texas gentleman.

Branch & Mike
Click Image To Enlarge.
Branch & Mike.

    I was fortunate enough to be walking by the MuscleTech Booth when Jay Cutler was there signing photos of himself. There was a very long line waiting to get one of those signed photos.

Click Image To Enlarge.
Jay Cutler.
View More Pics From The 2006 Olympia Here.

    I decided to take a quick shot over the crowd and Mike went up to him and said, "Mr.Cutler, the word on the floor is that you're gonna win tonight."

    "What's your name?" Jay replied.


    "Thanks, Mike," he said as he winked and gave Mike the thumbs-up sign and then he went on to signing the photos a little while longer. As busy as Jay was, he still took just a few seconds to quickly acknowledge a fan.

Click Image To Enlarge.
Jay Cutler.

    I had a nice conversation with Joe Archer, who was from All American Pharmaceutical. Joe's company is the maker of Kre-Alkalyn and he was very excited about the new products that they're coming out with. I could see the excitement in his eyes as he was telling me about them. Of course, I can't tell you what they are yet, but I think they'll be some awesome products!

      View Top Selling Kre-Alkalyn Products Here.

The Samples:

    I left the Expo with a lot of samples. Most of the samples were some sort of whey protein. Some were creatine and the rest were energy supplements. I drank a lot of protein and snacked on protein bar nuggets while I was there. I had a good workout at Gold's earlier and I couldn't pass up the opportunity to keep my old body in a positive nitrogen balance.

Nitrogen Balance: The Key To Muscle Growth. Nitrogen Balance.
Any bodybuilder with a rudimentary understanding of the sport would know the key to gaining muscle is protein consumption. But how do we know if we are getting enough protein? .
[ Click here to learn more. ]

    I was intrigued by a few products and wanted to know what ingredients were in them. Many times I didn't want to sample the drinks until I knew for certain what was in it. I didn't want to overdose on caffeine and not be able to sleep that night from sampling too many energy drinks.

    (I thought it was funny that one of the models handing out the drinks explained that the MAIN ingredient that gave you the instant energy in their product was the B vitamins. She didn't mention the caffeine!)

Time To Go...


    After sauntering around the Expo for a couple hours it was about time to go. Both Mike and I were getting tired. Mike was more tired than I was. Remember the 10-pound jug of protein? Well, he added a three-pound container of NO-Explode and countless samples along the way.

    I saw Gary Strydom shortly before we left and I had to get my picture taken with him. I could see he was in a hurry to go somewhere, but he was still polite and took the time to chat for a moment.

    Click Image To Enlarge.
    Myron & Gary Strydom.

    We were about ready to leave when I glanced back at the aisles and realized we hadn't been down the row on the far right. Mike glared at me and said something like, "There's nothing you need to see down there. Nothing interesting at all!" I motioned for him to follow me.

    He rolled his eyes and tightened his grip and trudged down the last aisle with me. When I got to the end, I realized he was right. So we walked all the way back down the aisle, up the steps, through the lobby and then walked the three blocks to my car listening to Mike grumble all the while.

My Brother Won

Back at Circus Circus I was going to crash and take a nap for a while, but I received another call from my brother informing me that he had won the Masters division at his contest. That was great! I was so proud of him. Click here to see him.

2006 Eagles Wings Bodybuilding, Xtreme Fit And Figure Competition Review & Results! 2006 Eagles Wings Bodybuilding Competition Review & Results!
With High Intensity Interval Training you can burn more fat while spending less time in the gym. I will explain how you can get the best results from this.
[ Click here to learn more. ]

He had lost 100 pounds in the last year to get ready for it. I was so excited I couldn't sleep so a nap was out of the question. It was a great weekend so far and the Mr. Olympia finals were coming up soon.

The Finals

The plan was to get the Orleans before 6:00 p.m. and then grab something to eat and get to the finals with time to spare. The Strip was busy with traffic on a Saturday night and about half way to the Orleans I remembered that I left the tickets in the hotel room.

I turned around, grabbed the tickets, got back on Las Vegas Blvd. and traffic was still crawling. To make matters worse, I got behind a guy on some sort of Moped or scooter thing that looked like it was made for a 10-year-old kid and the guy riding it was probably six feet, five inches tall.

It buzzed like a high-powered weed whacker and judging by the way the long-legged fellow slowed the vehicle with his feet, it didn't have any brakes. Mike was laughing hard and said, "Only in Las Vegas, Myron. Only in Las Vegas!"

I didn't want to be behind the guy, but with that vehicle's Flintstone-braking technology, I certainly didn't want to be ahead of him either. He had nearly rammed another car already. After about 10 minutes, I was finally able to safely get around the guy and we were on our way to the Orleans.

Click Image To Enlarge.
The Orleans.
View More Pics From The 2006 Olympia Here.

We got to the Orleans a few minutes before 7:00 p.m. We went to the Subway in the casino to grab some food before the show started. It looked like we weren't the only quick thinkers to eat at Subway before the show. The line had about 20 people in it.

Click On Your Favorite Restaurant To Learn The Truth!
© © © ©
© © © © ©

I gritted my teeth and patiently waited for all the people in front of me to decide which type of bread and cheese they would like for their sandwich. We grabbed our to-go bags and headed down the endless hallway with inoperable people movers back to the arena.

2006 Olympia Review - Jay Cutler Makes History! 2006 Olympia Review - Jay Cutler Makes History!
Here is my latest review from the 2006 Mr. Olympia contest. Read on right here as I highlight the top 15 and give details about who placed where and why.
[ Click here to learn more. ]

Bob Cicherillo was introducing the figure competitors when we walked in so, thankfully, we hadn't missed anything. I wolfed down my sandwich and decided to eat the Baked Lays later.

Click Image To Enlarge.
Co-MC Bob Cicherillo.
View More Pics From The 2006 Olympia Here.

The show moved along quickly and was more organized than last year. I was glad there was no attempt to do backstage interviews and they didn't take the time for everyone to watch a guy drop half a ton on chest in a failed bench press attempt this year.

Click To Enlarge.
Right Before Rychalk's Attempt At The 2005 Olympia. [ Learn More ]
Video: Windows Media (3.8 MB) - MPEG (13.4 MB)
View More Pics From The 2005 Olympia Here.

I thought Bob and Shawn did a great job of emceeing. It was certainly better than last year. Personally, I'd like to see Lonnie Teper co-host with Bob. That'd be an enjoyable pair to emcee the event next year.

Seeing Jay Cutler upset Ronnie Coleman was truly amazing. The electricity in the air that night was incredible. As I left the arena I was thinking about these articles I'd be writing.

Click Image To Enlarge.
Truly Amazing!
View More Pics From The 2006 Olympia Finals Here.

I was hoping I'd be writing about Coleman's ninth record-setting win, but an upset was even better. It had more drama and emotion. It was a perfect ending to an Olympia Weekend in Las Vegas. I can't wait for the rematch next year!

Click Image To Enlarge.
A Perfect End.
View More Pics From The 2006 Olympia Here.