Jeffery Salter / M + F Magazine
Jeffery Salter / M + F Magazine
There's an old Welsh saying: Deuparth gwaith yw ei ddechrau which means, "Starting the work is two-thirds of it." James "Flex" Lewis, 35, stunned the. (1
"This is one of the hardest decisions ever made to make," he said at the time. "It's finally time to say this 212-pound chapter is over."
Few would argue that Lewis does not belong to the main event after dominating the lighter class with seven Olympics titles. Standing 5'5 "with mind-boggling thickness, he's one of the best pound-for-pound bodybuilders in IFBB history. He Wants to be. He looks like he's ready for the labs of Hercules, but he's more than comfortable His trophic case is evidence of. "His trophic case is evidence of that.
In the 212 division, I've been maxed out since first show, "he says." I know every single year I have to make improvements for the judges, but I have to make that 212 weight limit. "At 220 pounds, it's a game changer."
That's why it's not good enough for Lewis. He's coming for the Sandow, and just about anything else.
Hill has trained Lewis for 16 years, having first met the future IFBB Pro League superstar at the 2003 Paul Grant Welsh Championships. (Lewis won, unsurprisingly.) Since then, Hill has applied his Comprehensive Training System, Y3T (Yoda 3 Training), to help Lewis become the most dominant athlete in the 212 division. "He and I started this thing together , "Lewis says of Hill." He believed in me way before anybody else d id. "
Mr. Olympia prototype. To prepare for the next task, Mr. Olympia prototype. "The Mr. Olympias we've seen over the years are all very different," says Hill in his distinctive Welsh brogue. "They all brought something special, something unique. We plan to do the same. "
While he does not trade in aphorisms or inverted grammar, Hill's Yoda-like reputation is apparent when he discusses his training approach with Lewis. He speaks about brain activation, neural pathways, and progressive overload in a calculated systemic approach that potentiates cell growth by targeting various types of muscle fibers.
But do not expect Jedi mind tricks. Hill's cerebral approach is steeped in realistic expectations. Lewis is taking the whole year away from the stage to prepare. Phil Haha, new Mr. Olympia Shawn Rhoden, and the rest of the physique elite. Big plans demand big changes.
"It's like starting over again," Hill explains. "But I do envision that when Flex steps onstage in 2020, he wants to bring something pretty spectacular that will not disappoint anyone."
Hill points to Dexter Jackson as an example of a bodybuilding great who went from a smaller division to the big time. Many forget the Blade's origin story, which started way back in the mid-1990s. "
" Dexter Jackson started out winning his pro card as a light-heavyweight in the NPC, but he grew out of that weight and continued to gain more muscle, bigger muscle bellies, and a more refined, competitive physique, "Hill recalls. "Now he's one of the most successful bodybuilders in history and a Mr. Olympia champion."
Lewis is not ready to grow bigger-it may be impossible to stop him.
Just 12 months after he turned IFBB pro, the 202 weight class came along, so it made sense to go in, "Hill says. Then that was replaced with the 212-pound class, and then he had progressed with his maturity and body weight. He's competing at the end of the year, but he has the problem for the last three or four years. Now we can bring in a new look without the weight restriction. He'll be able to reach his full potential for the first time. "
"As long as he stays hungry and driven enough, he's got many years left in front of him," Hill says. "The first time he competes in 2020, that's not going to be as good as he may look in 2021 and beyond. He wants to keep getting better. "
Whatever happens, do not expect Welsh's identity behind.
" I take it to the fans to keep growing the sport, keep doing it my way, keep being humble, driven, and motivational, and obviously never forget where I've come from, "Lewis says. "I still have this accent. I still know my humble roots. I go back home and see all my friends, and they tell me, 'Flex, you've never changed.'