by Christian Duque
The world of bodybuilding and fitness breathed a sigh of relief when the news spread that the Olympic weekend would actually take place in 2020. The new owner Jake Wood and his team shouldn't have expected less. led by Dan Solomon, now in his second year as Chief Olympia Officer. It was without a doubt one of the most difficult years the fitness industry had to endure.
What is worse is that there is practically no end in sight. Despite the fact that the organizers were looking for creative ways to promote their events, which were often unconditionally supported by their venues, the shows were stopped in their tracks by local and state governments. Many athletes, both at amateur and professional levels, are becoming increasingly disillusioned. They have no gyms to train in, no competitions to prepare for, and they get tired of training with water jugs and bands. Social distancing has taken a very high toll, as many either work from home or collect unemployment. Sport needs something to look forward to, it needs its crown jewel, the Olympia Weekend. For this reason, when the news circulated that an important announcement should come, so many people kept their fingers crossed and hoped that this was not a rejection. The fact that the 2020 event will have new dates is exactly the kind of message that athletes and fans had to hear.
Changing data is the responsible thing. Many competitions in June, July and even August are postponed and canceled. Having the O on its usual date would have been very risky. The event could not only have been stopped, but possibly a fate similar to that of the unpopular Arnold Amateur earlier this year in Columbus, OH. Looking back on the Arnold, the amateur competitors went to bed the night before the competition and did not know for certain that they would have a stage the next day. In fact, it most likely looked like this. If this nightmare could be avoided for the biggest competition in our sport, it's a no-brainer. With a second wave of COVID19 in the fall, it would also have been very doubtful to keep the event at its usual September date.
For example, the United States has been postponed to December, which is a great move. A December date gives this world-class event a lot of time and allows its competitors to prepare for the stage, knowing that they have access to quality nutrition, gyms, and plenty of time to work with their coaches. In many parts of the country, a lot of ground has been lost through closed gyms for more than six weeks. As much as I have tried to encourage optimism, top competitors cannot prepare for a national stage by hanging on monkey bars and exercising with broomsticks, water jugs and rubber bands. That would be a great movie, but it would be in the fiction section.
This year's Olympia will be the first to be owned by Jake Wood, it will be the successful return of Ms. Olympia, and fans are excited to see what the reigning Mr. Olympia Brandon Curry will look like after a full year prep. In fact, he now has more time to show the best body in his entire career !! Some athletes have already started their preparations, such as Shaun Clarida, the much-discussed 212 Olympic showdown giant killer. The postponement of the event may not be the ideal news for him, but it is also not bad news. More time is always good and a far better chance of taking the stage in Las Vegas makes the difference for the O in the world. THE OLYMPIC IS IT. This is what every single IFBB Pro League Pro trains throughout the year. Every single amateur competitor in the NPC eats, trains and poses in the hope that one day he will achieve pro status and qualify for the O. The IFBB Pro League is the ONLY way to the most coveted title in the world. Everyone wants to be there. It's history, it's tradition, it's bodybuilding and fitness !!
In addition to competitors and fans, I can tell you that the providers will also be very satisfied with the new date. I hate staying on The Arnold Classic because this event has suffered the hardest blow from anyone else, but imagine all the providers there. It is one thing to get your money back for the stand, but what about the shipping costs, what about sending workers who assemble huge stands for days only to see that the whole fair is not taking place. Nobody, nothing can stand in the way of the government. What we saw in 2020 was completely unprecedented. There was simply no way to get prepared or warned enough beforehand (at least not that that would have happened). Everyone, and I mean everyone, was wiped off the side and knocked out. Could the Olympics have gone smoothly in September? Maybe yes, maybe no, but maybe – everything is not the right way. With a new date, further out, and with more planning and attention, this will put a lot more trust in the division of our sport.
Here's the bottom line. The Olympics are the big league, and if you want to host an event of this caliber, you need executives who can make the tough calls. We are very happy to have Jake Wood, a real fan and supporter of bodybuilding, as the new owner of the competition. We are also very happy that Dan Solomon has such a creative, innovative and committed visionary who oversees everything. I'm very, very excited to be in the O no matter what date it may be. I will be there – and I know – you will be too !!
How excited are you Who do you think will prevail? I hope you enjoyed reading this article here in Iron Magazine. I am looking forward to read your comments. Please don't forget to use the discount code IML15 to save 15% at IronMagLabs.com – iincluding the new CBD Gummies !!!