It gives us great pleasure to bring you the first of a monthly column in our print magazine and website by the one and only Mr. Big Vic Richards.
You were a teenage ‘Mass Monster’, you were massive already so I think everyone wants to know at what age did you start training & what got you into bodybuilding? Why bodybuilding?
I started training at 15 because I’d seen the movie “Incredible Hulk” with Lou Ferrigno and I found out that I enjoyed the feel of working out and lifting heavy weights more than the bodybuilding aspect. Unlike most people who went to the gym to become a bodybuilder, my aim was the satisfaction I got from lifting weights, not by how I look. I did not actually consider what I did bodybuilding. That’s what everybody else did. I remember I used to tell the Barbarian Brothers when we worked out that I wasn’t bodybuilding; I was Victor-building, that I wanted to be an original instead of a replica.
How come you are so much bigger than everyone else? You brought the mass of the biggest bodybuilders of this era to the early 1980’s Gregg Valentino compares you to Sergio Oliva. How did you get that kind of mass in an era where other guys were 30lbs lighter than you?
First, aside from genetics, I used common sense and knowledge and wisdom. I watched a lot of guys in the gym working out and decided that the herd mentality will not work for me. They all were using someone else’s routine: Arnold and Columbo. I decided at an early age that a workout was as individual as someone’s DNA, not reading some star’s workout in a magazine.
What I did was freestyle bodybuilding: combination of bodybuilding techniques, powerlifting techniques, Olympic-style weight lifting techniques to shock the muscles without counting reps or sets. What is also known as the Original Instinctive Training. In order to make the muscle grow, you have to shock it and ambush it and blindside it. If the mind tells the body what it’s going to expect, the body will build resistance to it.
There are rumors of you eating up to 20,000 calories a day yet you were not fat. Did you really eat this way, what was your diet like, what foods did you gorge on to get so big?
20,000 calories a day was a misquote by a writer at Flex magazine who wanted controversy. I told them that sometimes I would take 20,000 calories in a day–not every day. My nutrition is as distinctive as my instinctive training. It’s a matter of tracking the ratio of the output and the input of my activity. I listen to my body. It’s not robotic. Some days the calories are higher than other days.