Chris Bumstead on Being Compared to Arnold Schwarzenegger: ‘I Think I Would Beat Him’ Because He Wasn’t in ‘Shape Enough’
Chris called Schwarzenegger the ‘GOAT’ but believes he could have defeated him with better conditioning.
“On stage [my body weight] is 240,” Bumstead said.“What was his body weight on stage?” asks Bradley Martyn.“Like 240ish, 6″1′ [was his height],” replied Bumstead. “It’s really hard to say [who would win] because people back then people weren’t as lean. If I went back looking – I’d be the leanest person they’d ever seen they wouldn’t even know what the fu** is going on. I don’t know if they would even want that. Maybe he would win because of that but he were to come today and compete against me in last year’s Olympia, I think I would beat him because he’s not in shape enough, you know, he wasn’t,” said Bumstead.
“When we talk about prize money for Classic Physique and sh**, I don’t want to be complaining saying I deserve it. I want to be the guy performing on stage and off stage to bring attention to the class to make it work it. Like, Arnold never bitc**d about prize money. He went out, he went to Hollywood, he did all this sh** and made bodybuilding mainstream for a while purely because of who he was. He made bodybuilding in the 90s. That’s absolutely insane, that’s greatness,” said Bumstead.
Bumstead Talks Winning 1st Olympia, Living with Autoimmune Disease & Classic Physique vs Open Popularity
Reflecting on his 2019 Classic Physique Olympia victory, Bumstead shared that he had to re-program his mind to stop worrying about factors outside of his control.
“Coming into 2019 and actually winning it and having all that work and sacrifice come into place was really cool moment,” Bumstead shared.“After I won the first one, it was an amazing, awesome, beautiful moment, something I’d been working for a long time but it was a sense of relief when I was done, because it was so much stress that I was holding, and I’m like, ‘Fu** why am I doing something that I love so much and letting it cause so much stress in my life?’ I had to really take a step back that next year and kind of re-program my mind into relinquishing that fear and not constantly worrying about if I’m going to be sick or not and letting go of control.”
“I have an autoimmune disease and I got really sick the year before from it. So I was living in a lot of fear and prepping for an Olympia trying to be confident and that takes a lot of confidence to believe in yourself getting through it but I kept doubting in the back of my mind that I was going to get sick again and I was hurting myself,” says Chris Bumstead.“It’s called IgA Nephropathy, it’s a pre-genetic predisposition that you can have or not and sometimes it flares up at times. Obviously, there’s way to mitigate it the best as possible by being really healthy and keeping stress levels down but obviously preps are like high stress.”
“It’s really hard to say [if Classic Physique is taking over Open bodybuilding] because right now it’s so old-school. No one – let’s say – the ownership is very old-school. The hardcore fans of bodybuilding are bodybuilding fans. The people that show up to buy tickets are different from the average people on social media. Most people on social media aren’t going to the Olympia and buying tickets so I think they still have a struggle with all that. But I do think going forward they [the divisions] will even out at some point.”“I don’t know if they’ll maybe even start judging bodybuilding to bring them down in size and stop rewarding the bigger guys – balance it out somehow,” added Bumstead.
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