Egyptian bodybuilder Mamdouh ‘Big Ramy’ Elssbiay had a fall from grace after an uneventful showing at the 2022 Mr. Olympia last month. In a recent YouTube video, Ramy confirmed he trained cardio on the morning of pre-judging for 2022 Olympia.
Former two-time Mr. Olympia champion Big Ramy first gained attention for his overwhelming muscle mass and size as a Men’s Open competitor. He dominated the competition at the 2020 Mr. Olympia to win his maiden Sandow trophy. He defended the title successfully the following year and entered the 2022 season as the favorite to retain the title.
However, Elssbiay fell short of the standard he set as Mr. Olympia. He turned in a lackluster performance and looked visibly off on stage. He lost the title to Hadi Choopan and dropped down to the fifth, behind former Mr. Olympia Brandon Curry, Nick Walker, and runner-up Derek Lunsford.
Ramy’s underwhelming appearance raised doubts over his future in the sport. Moreover, many thought something went wrong while he attempted to peak for the show. Ramy promised he wasn’t done and assured his fans that he would come back stronger than ever.
His close friend and training partner Dennis James weighed in on the outcome, sharing that he was unsure what happened to Ramy. However, he later echoed that Elssbiay looked flat before prejudging.
Former Mr. Olympia winner Samir Bannout commented that Ramy went a step backward, potentially due to the nerves of being on the global stage. IFBB head judge Steve Weinberger expressed his disappointment at the package Ramy brought. He specified that this wasn’t the Ramy ‘we all know.’
Canadian bodybuilding veteran Mike Van Wyck claimed Big Ramy was doing cardio the morning of prejudging. He stated that he saw Ramy at the gym working on the step machine for at least sixty minutes just a few hours before competing at the event. Some have suggested that this is why Ramy appeared flat on the 2022 Olympia stage.
Big Ramy dispels the rumors that he did morning cardio hours before 2022 Mr. Olympia
In a recent video posted on YouTube, Nick Trigili of BB & BS shared his conversation with Mamdouh ‘Big Ramy’ Elssbiay. He addressed rumors about Ramy practicing cardio before pre-judging for Olympia last month.
Ramy admitted he trained cardio hours before the show and clarified that it was a part of his normal protocol.
“I don’t understand what the problem is,” said Ramy. “I always did my cardio all the time. I don’t know what the problem was. I did my cardio always and even that day on the day of pre-judging, I did my cardio in the morning.”
Ramy stressed that he wouldn’t hang up his posing trunks after falling to fifth place. He added that cardio was a normal part of his routine in the lead up to the event.
“Yeah, that’s true. Also, when I prep, I never did anything without telling it to my coach. I will ask them before doing anything. Anyway, it’s just a show. I don’t know why people are now saying if Ramy loses the Arnold Classic, he must stop bodybuilding. Why? Many guys lost and even stayed lost.”
“I think Chad agreed with me to do that not because I’m not ready or anything but because he knows I need it to feel good. If I stop my cardio in the morning, I feel something is wrong with my body. He did that for my mental and not because of how it would make me look.”
Elssbiay is scheduled to compete at the upcoming 2023 Arnold Classic, set for Mar. 2-5 in Columbus, Ohio. He will look to redeem himself with a win against the likes of Nick Walker, who defeated him at last year’s Olympia. While many believe Ramy’s best days were behind him, Ramy is confident he can turn in a shocking performance in less than six weeks.