The seemingly indestructible eight-time Mr. Olympia, Ronnie Coleman, has promised to achieve the greatest feat in living bodybuilding history come September 29 - win a ninth Mr. Olympia title to eclipse the eight-win record he shares with the great Lee Haney.
As usual, Ronnie is very confident this time around - a trait that has helped him to claw his way from near obscurity in the early 90's to the pinnacle of men's professional bodybuilding.
As an eight-time Mr. Olympia winner, Ronnie feels he has proven himself as a worthy champion, one who is, in his words, nearly a decade ahead of the competition. Indeed, the statement "Ronnie Coleman is from another planet in terms of muscle size and conditioning" has become the most used cliché in recent bodybuilding history.
That Ronnie is so far ahead of the competition is no mistake. His bodybuilding career is his life and he lives to improve his physique to the point where previous showings are surpassed with a new and improved package each and every time.
With his popularity and monstrous development leading the way, Ronnie will go down in history as being one of, if not the greatest bodybuilder of all time. Will Ronnie change the record books come September 29? Don't bet against it.
As an ambassador of the sport Ronnie remains a true bodybuilding professional in every sense of the word. His 24-hour-a-day commitment to establishing himself as a man whom many are heralding as the greatest pro ever is commendable. In the following interview Ronnie talks about his plans for the 2006 Olympia and gives an update on his life in bodybuilding.
[ Q ] Ronnie. Predictions regarding this year's Olympia result are varied. Many say you will again win to set a new record. Others say it is time for a changing of the guard. How do you feel going into the 2006 Olympia?
[ A ] People usually say it's time for a changing of the guard if they expect "the guard" to stay around... to win again. So basically what you're saying is that just about everyone expects me to win. That sounds about right.
Kidding aside, I feel confident that I'll "Finish First" in classic BSN style. Having won eight O's already, I've got it down to a rhythm. Nothing can stand in my way once I'm in that rhythm.
[ Q ] Do you think there will be any major threat to your title, or anyone who will come close to taking it from you?
[ A ] The only way I could lose it is if after they hand me the trophy some lunatic jumps onto the stage, grabs it out of my hand, and takes off. We all know that's not gonna happen.
[ Q ] This year what can we expect to see from Ronnie Coleman as far as size and shape go? What improvements do you expect to show onstage?
[ A ] You can expect me to make improvements that will give me more than enough of a margin to win. That's a given.
[ Q ] Have you made any changes to your training program? If so, what are these and what results are they expected to achieve?
[ A ] I'm training only one day a week. My workouts last about 15 minutes. I rest about 10 seconds between sets. That's it.
Am I pulling your chain? Maybe. I won't talk about my training much. That would be like a top chef sharing his most prized recipe with you. I can't do that. Just expect me to win. That will be the result achieved.
[ A ] I can share this with you. I'm using SYNTHA-6TM right up to the show. BSN hit a home run with this stuff. It's the only protein I've ever been able to use four to five times a day without feeling stuffed or bloated. I love it. The strawberry flavor tastes like strawberry milk. It's amazing.
Other than SYNTHA-6, I'm taking plenty of CELLMASSTM to keep my strength and power through the roof, N.O.-XPLODETM before I train, and NITRIXTM all day long. I go through those big 360 bottles of NITRIX like crazy 'cause I rely on it so much to stay vascular.
Like my training program, as far as the details of my diet program go, I won't talk about it. Trade secrets, you know?
[ Q ] Last year you showed you were the worthy champion with a physique that blew everyone away. Do you think you could go on to win several Olympia's, should you choose to do this? Are you that far ahead of the competition?
[ A ] Well, I've already won several Olympias. Even if you're not a bodybuilder, you can appreciate the significance of winning eight world titles. My track record is the proof in the pudding - proof that I am way far ahead of the competition - nearly a decade ahead!
[ Q ] Should you win this year, will you compete in next year's event?
[ A ] It's certainly possible.
[ Q ] How does it feel to be on the verge of making history by beating the record Lee Haney set in 1991? Do you feel any added pressure going into the 2006 Olympia?
[ A ] It's motivating to know that I'm going to be the first person in history to win nine Olympias. But there's no more pressure than I usually put on myself. I make myself stay in my rhythm of meals, training, supplements, sleeping. A few months before the show I go on lockdown and shut myself into my house. It's like "Fort Ronnie." As long as BSN keeps shipping me my supplements every month, I've got everything I need there.
[ Q ] What are you weighing right now, and what do you plan on weighing when you step foot onstage come September 28?
[ A ] Again, I won't reveal my recipe, only the final outcome - that I'll win.
[ Q ] How is life for you, right now? What is life like for an eight time Mr. Olympia compared to the average person?
[ A ] My life is my career at this point. I live a very structured life. I clock in each day, and go through my routine. Then I clock out - literally - when I go to bed. When I wake up the next day I start it all over again.
[ Q ] There has been talk that you are very disciplined in the way you live the life as a pro bodybuilder. What keeps you passionate about what you do?
[ A ] Like I said, being the greatest bodybuilder on the planet is my life and career right now. Knowing that I'm on top and wanting to stay there gives me fuel each day to stay in the rhythm and not lose focus.
[ Q ] What special attributes do you have that make you the kind of champion you are today?
[ A ] You said it yourself: discipline. That's what it comes down to. Once you find your rhythm - the pattern of training, diet and supplements that works for you - you can't help but make progress. But it takes discipline to figure out what your rhythm needs to be, and even more discipline to stay in it.
[ Q ] What are some of the factors that have shaped your competitive mindset? Does a champion have a special gift for focusing their energies into their sport?
[ A ] I'm not really sure what shaped my competitive mindset. I've always been able to discipline myself. I don't know any other way of approaching things. I can't speak for anyone else and their mindset. I can only look through my own eyes. It would seem to me that discipline is really important, if not essential.
[ Q ] When you eventually retire, how would you like to be remembered?
[ A ] For continuing to improve when most people didn't think it was possible anymore. That's what I do year after year to win the title. You'd think that your muscles would reach a limit where they can't get any bigger, harder, more cut, but I continue to improve in all of these ways and more. Every year I raise the bar higher.
[ Q ] What has been your greatest moment in bodybuilding, and why?
[ A ] My greatest moment in bodybuilding is, by far, winning my very first Mr. Olympia. The reason why is because I never really thought it was possible to win the Mr. Olympia. My biggest goal was to place in the top 5 and that's all I thought was possible for me, but for me to win was definitely overwhelming and very unexpected. It just goes to show that we are not in control of our own destiny like we would like to be. God is in control and decides what he wants us to do in life.
[ Q ] All the best for the Olympia Ronnie. Is there anything you would like to say to your many fans?
[ A ] Thanks. Yeah... I want to tell everyone to drop by the BSN booth at the Olympia. There are going to be some cool surprises waiting for you there this year. Expect the unexpected.