VR: Yes that was the year of the big earthquake in Southern California. I was living there at that time with my family, but after the quake hit I knew I had to get
the hell out of there. It scared the shit out of me thinking that my children could have been killed. So I decided to move up to Seattle. During this time things were quite hectic for me with the move, so training was really very minimal. I was scheduled to go to Fibo and I knew I had to get back into training.
TS: But that would have meant that you had only 2 months to get into shape and yet you showed up fucking enormous..your all time biggest. What on earth did you do differently.
VR: I’ll get to that later.
TS: O.K. well than let’s talk about what happened when you were at FIBO.
VR: Well I was standing with John Brown who is a friend of mine and we were commenting on the attitudes of some of the bodybuilders like Flex and a few others. Kevin Levrone was totally cool and respectful to me as was Dorian, but a lot of the other young guys were making comments like I was fat and out of shape and wouldn’t do anything on stage. Now I was all covered up so I just laughed to myself. But John Brown kept telling me to go onstage on the last day when they have the group posedown. At first I did not want to do it... but as I heard more and more comments I figured I would have a little fun.
TS: So you weren’t scheduled to be onstage
VR: No. but I went up and told the announcer that I would be joining the guys on stage and he got all excited. Anyway, after the guys were onstage, I stripped down and as I was walking out the announcer who was speaking in German apparently said that I was the biggest man on the planet and the un-crowned Mr. Olympia. Now I did not tell him to say that, and quite frankly didn’t know what he was saying cause he was speaking German. All I know is one of the promoters who was good friends with Dorian went crazy and grabbed the microphone from the announcer and started screaming that I was a bloated water tank and could never compete against these guys.
TS: Funny... .But what was the crowds reaction
VR: They went nuts... they loved it
TS: How about the other athletes.
VR: They were in total disbelief at my size. Kevin Levrone was totally cool and told me I would destroy everyone if I ever got into contest shape and that if I wanted to compete he would help me get ready.
TS: How about Dorian.
VR: I like Dorian a lot... but I saw him backstage after and his head was down and he was very solemn. I told him I did not mean to disrespect him in any way and that I thought he was a great champion. But I couldn’t help but get the feeling he was dejected a bit because I was so much bigger than he was
TS: I remember one of the magazines had a small photo and I was longing to see more...but nobody ever touched the subject... it was like it never happened and yet I would think that would be big news to see you posing off against Dorian.
VR: Yeah, certain powers that be made sure that not too many pictures were published from that day.
TS: I still have that one pic of you cut out and on my wall for inspiration. But I must say again in all fairness to Dorian, he didn’t look fully loaded as a few years later I saw him guest pose in N.Y. and at 300lbs. he looked fucking insane and a lot bigger than at Fibo that year with you. Now that would have been a wild posedown. Two of the biggest men in the sport. Christ through in an off season Ronnie Coleman and Nasser El Sonbaty and they would have to reinforce the fucking stage.
TS: Let’s switch topics a bit. Who are some of your favorite bodybuilders from today?
VR: Well I think Dorian was great. Flex has great lines and is actually a smaller version of me. Kevin Levrone is awesome. Lee Haney was fantastic. Of course Sergio was amazing.
TS: Let me through some names out: J.P. Fux
VR: Oh my god... what a shame what this guy did to himself. I met him years ago before he made himself look pregnant and thought he was really good. Then I met him again in Atlanta and did not recognize him.
TS: Paul Dillet
VR: Paul had the potential to be very, very freaky, but instead he will go down as just an average big man. I asked Paul to train with me when he first came out here and told him if he could rough it for a year, we would make lots of money going around guest posing together as two super-freaks. But he never did.
TS: Greg Kovacs
VR: Greg Kovacs is a nice guy, I met him a few times, but the hype around him is a joke. He is not the biggest bodybuilder on the planet. He is 6’3" and around 375 pounds in the offseason and he looks terrible at that weight... certainly not like a bodybuilder. And even if he does go up to 400lbs. he would still just look like a big ole football lineman. I am 5’10" and have weighed as much as 340lbs. But all my muscles are full and round and have shape and symmetry. I can go find a 6’8" 410lb bodybuilder, but that wouldn’t mean he would look as freaky and thick and dense as I would.
TS: I know this is a touchy subject with you, but I have to ask. What are your theories on drugs in the sport?
VR: Well I get asked this all the time, and I do not like to answer because I feel I have to be responsible. I know what I am doing, but if someone thinks they can do what I do to be like me and then they hurt themselves, it becomes my fault. All I can say is there are proven medicinal uses for steroids and other compounds, which if used properly are very safe. However, the key is used properly. These days the guys are using insane amounts and using GH, and insulin as well. I would never in a million years play around with insulin or thyroid drugs either. Too dangerous. Besides if you know enough about nutrition you can effectively manipulate your own insulin levels to be very beneficial for building muscles.
TS: Alright, I ain’t pulling any punches... ..What drugs do you use and which ones do you feel are the most effective.
VR: Hmmm... ..nice try Trevor.
TS: Alright, let me rephrase that. If a bodybuilder were to choose to use drugs, are there any that you feel are safer and more effective than others.
VR: Let me just say that I think androgen-based drugs are shit and very dangerous and hard on the system. They do nothing but bloat the hell out of a person and then when they are stopped everything is lost. A much wiser approach would be to use highly anabolic compounds. Because if used correctly they can result in lots and lots of quality muscle that stays with you for the most part.
TS: Things like equipoise and winstrol are highly anabolic
TS: Well in all honesty, I cannot believe that you don’t feel androgens are effective...I mean I would have guessed by your condition at fibo very huge but also holding water that you would find them somewhat useful.
VR: I am not going to comment on my personal life for the reasons stated before. I will say, however, that there is one compound out there that is very androgenic, and very anabolic and would result in lots of muscle. But it is very toxic and dangerous and would never be used for any length of time.
TS: And what compound would that be
TS: You know one of the major problems I see, is that young guys coming up and in established pros, have a hard time training without the use of drugs and therefore stay on all the time. Mostly these guys never put in any time training naturally and once their cycle is done, they start to crash in size and panic. So rather than wait to clean the system and learn to train and progress naturally as well... they hop right back on a course or at the very least "bridge". Which always cracks me up because these idiots are never giving their body a break... which in the long run really hinders their progress.
VR: I totally agree. That is the problem. People don’t take the time off that their bodies need. It would be wise to give the body 4-6 months of total clean time a year...but invariable this happens with only a few. But they are the few that will be around for a long time and be healthy to boot. The other problem they have is they think drugs are the key which they are not. Nutrition and training are the keys.
TS: Precisely my thoughts. Whenever I work with someone...whether a Pro or an Amateur the first thing I tell them is I have no secrets or magic bullets. Just common sense and balls to the wall effort. That is what makes the difference. This brings me to my next question. Years back you claimed that you ate a daily diet of around 30,000 kcals. Now that is fucking absurd and is more than a fucking gorilla or a lion would eat.
VR: I agree... it is totally absurd and I never said that. Well I did, but it was taken out of context, like most of the information in the magazines. I was asked what the most amount of calories I ate in a day was and I told the person conducting the interview that it was probably 30,000 but that was simply because I was eating Nigerian foods which are heavily loaded with lots and lots of fats. I never said I ate 30,000 kcals on a regular basis and certainly not from Rice, Chicken and vegetables. You have to understand I basically did everything that I wasn’t supposed to in terms of playing the political angle in bodybuilding. I marched to my own beat and still had lots of fans and still made a good living and this pisses off the powers that be. So ANY opportunity to make me look like a fool and discredit me they will. But I will not be made to look like a fool. I am college educated and have a degree in psychology. My family are all doctors, so there is no shortage of intelligence in my genes and certainly a lot more when compared to the people that participate and run this sport.
TS: Ouch! Someone’s not too happy.
VR: No, I am just saying it like it is.