Breaking Down Phil’s Latest Interviewtony
So today I got an interesting podcast for you guys. I’m not sure if you guys saw it, but seven-time champ Phil, he did an exclusive interview with DAN SAULMAN, who runs the mr. Olympia competition now. On Instagram, I watched it the other night live, and then I found a channel that actually recorded because my recording on my phone did not work for some reason. I don’t know why, but he’s the only one that had the recording. So I want to shout him out, is called the great bodybuilder’s YouTube. I appreciate you for recording it and putting the interview up because I wanted to rewatch it with a different perspective. I was watching it as a friend and just registering what Phil was saying and getting excited about it.
Now as a journalist, I wanted to appreciate it from a different angle and look at it from a different perspective as a journalist and dissect what Phil Heath was telling us, what Dan was asking him, and the specifics on why Dan asked these questions. So, if you didn’t see it, I’m going to cover it. We’ll talk about a couple of the questions that were brought up and you’ll see why I brought them up because there were interesting answers from the champ. As I got to know Phil, we joke around 99% of the time, it’s never serious really and the times that it is serious, it’s very serious, and seeing him with this type of attitude and mindset, it wasn’t an act. He’s told me numerous times how focused and how different he feels about the approach to this Olympia.
I’m getting goosebumps talking about it because I was an athlete too, growing up, just like him, obviously not to his skill set, but I was very competitive and I did not like to lose. I had bad sportsmanship. I’m going to admit it, when I was a kid, I was really salty about losing. I mean, most guys are when they’re into sports. So you take that now with Phil Heath’s skillset athletic background, and then him after winning seven straight Olympia’s ever since he turned pro, whatever year that was. He hasn’t had much downtime it’s all been just a steady climb up and how many other pros could say that they went from turning pro to winning, Colorado pro, New York pro and then going places, the Olympia, placing at the Arnold and, and winning the Olympia, never losing again.
I mean, that’s a pretty serious track record, he never had a chance to like really absorb it all. He’s just going, going, going every year. If you think about it like one prep after another, it’s all just turned into one after a while. Then you have your personal stuff on the side going on, you don’t have a chance to even like absorb it all and register what’s going on. You’re just traveling over the world. I don’t think a lot of people put in perspective how exhausting that is. Then when you finally do end up taking second place in 2018, all the shit that was just compiling up for so many years, all hits you in the face. It’s it hurts. I went through the same thing on a very low scale level with turning pro Mr.USA
Then having everything turn from shiny, bright for me and my head and then it all turned to shit because I had to stop for whatever reasons. All my real-life starts to compile up and you’re like, fuck, man, I shouldn’t have ever put all this stuff off. He kind of went through something very similar, but he had to get humbled in front of millions of people and lose, then get ripped and ridiculed for something that was unavoidable. It was an injury, just like when someone tears, a muscle. He had a hernia, a tear in the abdominal wall. He competed for two years with it and he let it go because he had no downtime and said, fuck it. Still came 100% in shape and no one talks about how great of a shape he was or what he looked like.
They talk about the one stupid little thing on his midsection. We have all these click baiters that love it, they’re click-baiting and it’s just never-ending. I’m not doing this because I’m just friends with him. I’m doing this because these things need to be heard more of instead of these YouTube channels and bodybuilding channels just giving a negative light on our sport. They’re not bringing the good out, they’re bringing all the negative shit out, then they get clicked in the interview because they’re such a piece of shit to begin with. Then they click that and just try to say the opposite of what they’ve been doing the entire time. So I want to just talk about all the positive things that Phil is doing.
His charity work, all his events that he’s done for the sport, guest posings, giving back to the sport, flying around all the 30 countries and representing the sport with all different supplement companies and people don’t talk about that stuff though. They just want to talk about the one little negative thing in his stomach or this and that. Let me just say something, and this is coming from a good place, it’s not coming from being biased. This is saying that, that year when he lost should have never happened, let’s call it what it is and I think everybody can agree with that. Besides the little distension that he had in his hernia, there is no reason why I feel like he should’ve lost that night. He should ever have lost because of that, we can sit there and pick apart shots and everything else.
Phil is a different man right now. He’s coming for it, he’s just trying to close that narrative that he lost. As he uses montage that he’s unfinished business. It’s personal and business,this is not just something to do with bodybuilding and winning. This is a personal battle for him because I’m sure just like I did and what anyone else does, they go through a lot of different things mentally after you lose. Then all these other things come out and surface and relationships get severed or people have a different point of view on you. Then you have the whole transition to the fans and they hate you then they love you then they hate you they love you.
If you’ve never been in that position before, you have no idea what it’s like to go through that. I went through it on a very small scale. I keep comparing myself to him, but I’m talking about in relatively, what it’s like. It’s a lot to deal with if you’re not used to it or don’t have thick skin. Phil welcomes it, he loves the engagement with people, he loves engaging with fans, just like Dan Saulman talked about in the interview, which I’ll talk about. He talked about how he was the first Mr. Olympia to actually have social media and what it was like. I’m going to talk about that later, but there was no playbook to go by and say, “Hey, you know what, don’t do this, do that. Don’t do this. Don’t do that.” He was welcoming as it came.
He was just being real, being himself, and letting people see Phil Heath and interact with Phil Heath. No one ever thought that this was going to be like this. No one saw this coming, that Mr. Olympia’s and celebrities, were going to have Instagram and you’ll be able to, just send them a DM or send out a comment and try to get to them. After a while, though you start reading some shit. I tend to disconnect as much as I can. I don’t read much unless they’re positive things, or if I don’t want to see them, I just get rid of them. But when you’re Mr. Olympian, you can’t do that because it just comes in at 10 folds, a hundred folds. I mean, you can’t register what’s going on.
You just see all the negative shit, cause that’s where your brain goes. So for him to have to overcome all that on top of having to focus on his physique and continue to grow and be a better person, have business success, personal success, and relationship success. People don’t put all of that in perspective. They just look at Phil as, Oh, he’s the best bodybuilder in the world and Mr. Olympia and they don’t take him as a human. I think that’s where the disconnect comes from and I think now that he has that DVD coming out, you’re going to see behind the scenes of the real Phil Heath and the real narrative of what is was going on and who the real human is behind all this glitz, glamour, championships, winning and all that shit. It’s going to paint a different picture than what these YouTubers and bullshit reporters painted for you.
That’s why this interview is so great, because it really captured how focused he is and the laser like attention that he’s giving this prep, you could tell it’s different. It means something much more than it ever has to come back and win again. Who knows if he’s going to go for nine or 10, the guy’s only 40 years old but looks 30 years old and his body looks young, he’s refreshed, healed. A healed Phil Heath is unbeatable. I don’t think he’s ever lost a point before in Olympia. You guys can check, but it does not outweigh obviously how many points he’s won, It actually destroys it.
It smashes Phil Heath smashes you when you compete against him, there is no chance of winning when you stand next to Phil Heath. I don’t care, you can go put any ex Mr. Olympia, any bodybuilder next to him, no one smashes Phil Heath. So he’s coming in with that mentality that I have my Thor hammer, and I’m coming here to smash everybody. He’ll talk about this too, about how other bodybuilders are saying, Oh, now they’re more motivated because Phil’s in the show and you’ll hear Phil’s answer. It’s affirmative that he doesn’t need motivation. He’s got all the motivation he needs, he’s a champion and with that mindset I don’t know. I get goosebumps talking about it, I don’t know if anyone stands a chance. I really don’t think there’s even going to be a show, Ithink it’s going to be Phil and then everyone else, but let’s bring up some part of this interview with Dan and Phil. We’re going to talk about that on here real quick. A couple of things I brought up, they brought up for attention. I’m going to play it for you, and then we’re going to talk about it.
Interviewer: What was the, um, the end game and how did we get to this place where you were, um, you were feeling like now is the right time.
Phil: Um, simply because if there was fucking unfinished business to take care of simple as that
First here, Dan asked him, how did he get here? Long story short, what brought you here? what’s the reason why you’re coming back and, Phil answered them very easily and says, got unfinished business, that’s it. He’s very affirmative about the answer and like I said earlier, Phil is a man of a lot of words. Usually he makes jokes. He has fun with it, but you can tell, the focus is all there in his interview and he’s zoned in on his answer. That’s just it, he leaves it short, sweet and to the point, and this is different. I don’t know if you’ve ever watched any other affiliates interviews. He doesn’t do that much media coverage because he’s very picky about who he wants, whose platform he wants to share on, but this is a very firm and serious attitude. Which he has, this is not normal Phil Heath character on camera. That’s why I think this is very interesting to see, because this is obviously how he’s approaching this prep. The competitors in this Olympia are going to be watching this and saying, Hm Philly is really fucking focused. So watch the next question. Now it gets even better.
Interviewer: And I think to all those millions who follow you, um, but you know, but I’ll be honest with you that started in 2018, right? So you come to the 2018 Olympia, look into tidy all time record. And we’ll talk about that in a moment. And of course the unexpected happened, Sean Roden came in ready to battle and, uh, he beat you. And, um, I have to imagine if you could kind of go back to that night in 2018, and you can think about it for a second and think about the moments leading up to it while it happened in those days, weeks and months after that 2018 Olympia, if you could go back now that you’re a little bit more reflective, you’ve had a chance to kind of process and we’re as emotional today as we were at that time. Um, what are some of the things you might’ve done different?
You hear Dan asked him to give him a more detailed answer about what transpired between that time and now. You know Phil goes into basically how he’s owning the loss. We saw a couple on recent interviews, Phil was upset, he was emotional, who wouldn’t be? This is freshly after the Olympia, there’s a different attitude. He had to reflect and spoke about that on here. He talked to Jim Mandy about it, and he gets to 2018. It happened, I owned it, it is what it is, now 2020 is here and it’s time to put that shit in the past, move forward.
And win 2020, you can’t change the past. So this is a good learning lesson for a lot of you guys that harp on losses or harp on tragic things that happen. Even him, he had to go through it on a personal level and on a business level, that it is what it is. I didn’t win that day. As much as it hurts to hear him admit that, hear him say that he was not the best man that day, he has to move forward and look at the next thing. The next task on hand was getting his hernia surgery and addressing the problem to why he lost that show that he was putting off because he didn’t want to give up a year of competing. He probably would have been better off just taking a year off and just had the hernia surgery and then came back.
But when you’re winning seven in a row, you feel fucking beautiful, you feel great. we’ve all been there before, i’m sure with something, no matter how small it is or how big it is. When you’re on a roll, you’re on a fucking role. As an athlete, you don’t want to jinx that, you don’t want to disrupt that, so you’re just like, I’m going to go with the punches. I’m going to see which best man will win, I’ll deal with it, I’ll do it, I’ll deal with it. The 2018 I’ll deal with it in 2019 had to have two surgeries because of the seriousness of that hernia. He missed most of 2019 and people still thought he was doing the Olympia in 2019, which is crazy. So he had the confidence boost and then he reflected, as you said, you know, with HAUNIE and Hottie over in Dubai, he wrote down some thoughts that he wanted to manifest.
We all didn’t know that Phil, he was a deep person, but now we’re hearing it firsthand from him that he had to manifest this. He had to think about it and instill in his mind that this is what he was going to do. This happened over a year ago now, and now we are a couple months away from the Olympia and he’s talking about those moments. So just take those in as an athlete or even as an individual that’s trying to be better in life. Writing shit down, does work, trust me it does.
Interviewer: By the way, you’re relatively young in the grand scheme of things, compared to other champions who were at this part of their process, right? So the question becomes, what is it that the fans can anticipate seeing from this version of Phil Heath, in contrast to what we saw the last time he took the stage.
So now you heard Dan ask, well, what can we expect to see from you this year? How are you going to look? And he said a healed Phil Heath, and then silence. I want to say, Dan didn’t know what to say, but Dan was probably hoping for a bigger, more in depth answer like I’m gonna be shredded, the best I’ve ever looked, I’m gonna be the biggest I ever was. But Phil just left it short and sweet. He has nothing to prove guys, this is what I’m trying to get at. He’s not trying to win anybody over. He’s not trying to persuade you with his words that don’t make him feel like he’s a champ already. He doesn’t need that.
He’s not searching for any answers. He’s not looking for any support from anybody. This is all about him and his journey in this Olympia and about how he’s going to accomplish this. He doesn’t need anybody right now. I’d be very surprised if we even see much or hear from him during this prep. Because, as a competitor, I was there. Obviously I was a bodybuilder. It was one of those things. It was nice to have social media to put up your photos, I mean at my level. I would never do that at his level, but to get motivation from the fans and people tell you how great you are, I mean, who doesn’t like to hear that. You’re lying if you don’t like to hear that. So for him to be very stern and just certain about that answer about how he’s just going to be healed and that’s it. He’s going to win, that’s spewing confidence and knows when he takes that shirt off backstage and starts pumping up, people are going to freak out.
Interviewer: What’s your connection with the fans because I know it’s always been sort of a hot cold journey for you and you’re never afraid to connect with fans. You’re not afraid to get into it with fans at times. It’s something that you’ve always, um, been kinda, you wear your heart on your sleeve. So, so talk about that relationship with the fans because for you, I think it’s a very unique one compared to other champions we’ve had,
So then as you heard Dan asked about how does he feel about the fan base. you wear your heart on your sleeve. Where does he feel like he’s at right now? So Phil basically said in that three minute speech that, he knows who his fans are and he’s not worried about the haters because he knows deep down what the true story is. He knows who he is, what he wants and he’s going to do it. That’s why he’s named Mr. Olympia again for the eighth time. People can say whatever they want, just like when they talk about politics, they can talk about different news channels, spew different things. The narrative is that he’s only worried about what he has to do. He knows what he has to do to get there because he was a seven time champ before.
He knows what the end game is, what it’s going to take, how much focus he needs to zone in on this prep. You could tell that nothing is going to sway his mindset at all or take him off his tracks. That train right now, the Philly train is steaming, chugging and going full steam ahead towards that Mr. Olympia, eighth title. Just like he said, guys reach hard to be liked on social media. They reach hard to have a fan base. This guy has 3 million plus on Instagram alone, and Phil’s an Instagram guy, but he’s not giving you updates all day on his Instagram, but he posts it up. Can you imagine if Phil was reaching hard for fans, how he continuously posted and was aggressive on Instagram, what it would be like, it’d be a totally different Instagram you’d be looking at.
So he’s just saying straight up, I don’t need to reach for anything, I don’t need to prove anything to anybody. Everyone should know that I’m a seven time Mr. Olympia, in a row, they should know about and whom about, and what I show up looking like, he doesn’t have talk about it or be about it. It’s just going to happen. He’s going to show up and he’s going to be the best he ever was and that’s it. He doesn’t need to win anybody over and the people that will support him will support him. The haters are always going to hate, you’re always going to have hate in this world, no matter what, there’s always going to be one side that loves you and the one side that hates you. Especially when you get to a certain level of success, it’s just going to happen. You’re never going to have everyone on your side, that’s impossible and if you do, there’s something wrong. So if you meet somebody and all they do is have all these people that love them and just want to be around them and no one ever says anything bad about, then there’s something going on there, trust me. So, I really respect that answered by Phil. So here’s the next question,
Interviewer: eight time champion. Talk about what that means to you as you begin a contest prep that if successful would put you in a place that a few could ever, ever dream of.
So then Dan asks, what is it like to be measured against the greatest of those who ever did in our sport? The Ronnie’s, the Hanny’s, the Arnolds, the J all those guys. Then Phils one word answer, I mean, he’s very humble, It’s just unreal, you know, but then he gets into perspective on things. This is really good for some of you guys to listen to that are young and upcoming. Whatever you’re trying to do in life. Now let’s put this into perspective too before I say this. We’re talking about the guy with some of the best genetics ever to do this in bodybuilding. He wanted to be a basketball star originally, he was D-one or two basketball player, Denver, aspire to be in the NBA.
Obviously, he wasn’t the tallest man, not to make fun of him, but you know it’s tough. I mean, it’s the NBA. There’s only about 500 people in the entire NBA. So the odds go in the NBA, it’s very rough. He realized that, that door was not going to be open anymore and realized his potential in something else and this is good guys because if you aspire to be the bodybuilder, the pro, you looked up to Phil Heath and that door doesn’t work out for you, you’ve got to be positive and understand that another door might open, it’s not over because you didn’t make it at one thing. This is a good lesson for you young guys to listen to and this is good for me too because I still get caught up in things.
When I get overly obsessed with something, it doesn’t work out for me, i’m always like, fuck man, what am I gonna do now? It’s really good to hear from someone at his statue, at his level of success, with the sport of bodybuilding and business and whatever, to hear that he has the same problems that a regular real world person, a regular problem somebody else has, he’s human too. Basketball didn’t work out for him but it really worked out for him in bodybuilding. So there’s always something else for you in this life, whether it’s a small scale of a regular nine to five job, and you get moved up from the sales to a manager or whatever, there’s always something else for you. So be positive, keep your eyes open, keep networking, keep talking to people, keep all opportunities on the table.
You never know what you’re going to be good at or fall in love with. So leave all those opportunities open, that’s basically what he said here. Then he goes into a little more deeper stuff about being measured against those guys, how unreal it is and how he won eight in a row. But the main focal point that I wanted to bring up is just that Phil realized that basketball wasn’t working out and he sees the opportunity with bodybuilding, obviously. Who knows if Phil would have just kept trying at basketball, he was wise enough and articulate enough to realize, you know what, maybe I’m better at something else. I’m going to try this out, I love bodybuilding. Look what fucking happened. So last thing here, and then I’m gonna wrap this up.
Interviewer: There’s just a lot of great things happening around the fitness community and thought that you had a big part of it. I’ll let you have a last word before we get out of here.
Phil: Thanks Dan. I just want to tell everybody, thank you. Um, I want to shout out my team or my TGC, the Garcia companies. Thank you. Um, it’s took time to reflect and I’m back. Um, thanks Dan, thank you for this opportunity and be sure to grab those tickets. Obviously I’m going to be there and, uh, to all the competitors
So Phil ends that with no words for his competitors. Now, I thought that was just the fucking, the nail in the coffin line because he’s talking all positive about his team. He has Danny Garcia behind him, the rock, he has a documentary with seven bucks production. He’s grateful for everything, then, you know, he Phil had to get his laugh in with the little smirk, with the little jab. The good old jokester Phil because the entire interview, he was very stone cold, laser light focused on what Dan was saying, giving the right answers, not giving up too much answer. Just explaining what he needed to get out and that was it. Then he adds that at the end where “for my competitors” *nothing* . So if I was a competitor going to Mr.
Olympia and I was watching this and I had a real chance at being in the call out with Phil, I would think that mother fucker, I just can’t leave me hanging like that. The smirk on his face, I loved it. I think that was a great way to end this, this is a great interview with him and Dan, we need stuff like this. This is what bodybuilding needs, we need the trash talking and the camaraderie and the fun aspect of it. This is what makes bodybuilding awesome. I don’t know if you guys watched the battle of the Olympia DVDs coming up, a lot of you guys might not be old enough, but man, it was awesome hearing Nasser and all these guys talking shit in their gym while they’re training, jacked out of their mind, pumped out of their mind.
He’d go over to Chris Cormier or Flex Wheeler, talking shit and he’s all jacked out of his mind. Everyone’s got their right to, to brag and it was just camaraderie. It was never personal. Everyone loved each other and that’s what we don’t have anymore, so much separation, individuality going on and it’s weird. I don’t like bodybuilding like this, so this is what we need. We need more of this, I hope there’s gonna be more of it. Um, it was a great interview done by Dan and it was a great interview, to hear from Phil finally talking about, going for his eighth win. I wanted to cover it because it wasn’t recorded anywhere, no one could rewatch it really, except for this channel. Like I told you, the great bodybuilders on YouTube, not many views.
So, you know, this needs more attention. This is the seventh time coming back. Everyone should be talking about this, about this interview, not about Phil, everyone’s all about Phil, but talk about this interview. This is great material to talk about. It’s a real positive thing to see in bodybuilding. So hope you guys enjoyed this, this is sponsored by myself, my store, body science supps. Follows that body science supplement on Instagram and if you guys need any help in anything, you know where to find me.