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Sergio Oliva

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Sergio Oliva
Bodybuilder
Sergio-Oliva.jpg
Sergio "The Myth" Oliva
Personal info
NicknameThe Myth
Born(1941-07-04)July 4, 1941
Pinar del Río, Cuba
DiedNovember 12, 2012(2012-11-12) (aged 71)
Chicago, Illinois, United States
Height5 ft 10 in (178 cm)[1]
WeightContest: 225 lb (102 kg) Off season: 235 lb (107 kg)[1]
Professional career
Pro-debut
  • 1966 Mr. World
  • 1966
Best win
  • IFBB Mr. Olympia 1967-1969, three consecutive times
  • 1968 uncontested and unchallenged
PredecessorLarry Scott
SuccessorArnold Schwarzenegger
Active1962–1985

Sergio Oliva (July 4, 1941 – November 12, 2012) was a Cuban-American bodybuilder known as The Myth. He is a three-time Mr. Olympia winner.[2]

Early life

Sergio Oliva was born on July 4, 1941 in Guantanamo, Cuba. [3] During the presidency of Fulgencio Batista. As a teenager, after only a year of training Sergio was able to perform clean & jerks in excess of 400 pounds.[4] This caught the attention of the Cuban government, who then selected Sergio to represent Cuba at the upcoming 1961 Pan American Games. During his time in Jamaica representing Cuba at the Games, Oliva snuck out of his quarters while the guards were distracted. He then ran at top speed until he was safely inside the American consulate. Arriving breathlessly, he demanded and received political asylum. Soon, 65 other Cuban nationals followed him, including Castro's entire weightlifting team and their security guards. Soon afterwards, Oliva was living in Miami, Florida, working as a TV repairman.[5]

Discover more about Early life related topics

Fulgencio Batista

Fulgencio Batista

Fulgencio Batista y Zaldívar was a Cuban military officer and politician who served as the elected president of Cuba from 1940 to 1944 and as its U.S.-backed military dictator from 1952 to 1959, when he was overthrown by the Cuban Revolution.

Pan American Games

Pan American Games

The Pan American Games is a continental multi-sport event in the Americas featuring summer sports, in which thousands of athletes participate in a variety of competitions. The competition is held among athletes from nations of the Americas, every four years in the year before the Summer Olympic Games. The only Winter Pan American Games were held in 1990. In 2021, the Junior Pan American Games was held for the first time specifically for young athletes. The Pan American Sports Organization (PASO) is the governing body of the Pan American Games movement, whose structure and actions are defined by the Olympic Charter.

Jamaica

Jamaica

Jamaica is an island country situated in the Caribbean Sea. Spanning 10,990 square kilometres (4,240 sq mi) in area, it is the third-largest island of the Greater Antilles and the Caribbean. Jamaica lies about 145 kilometres (90 mi) south of Cuba, and 191 kilometres (119 mi) west of Hispaniola ; the British Overseas Territory of the Cayman Islands lies some 215 kilometres (134 mi) to the north-west.

Miami

Miami

Miami, officially the City of Miami, known as "the 305", "The Magic City", and "Gateway to the Americas", is a coastal metropolis and the county seat of Miami-Dade County in South Florida. With a population of 442,241 as of the 2020 census, it is the second-most populous city in Florida and the eleventh-most populous city in the Southeastern United States. The Miami metropolitan area is the ninth largest in the U.S. with a population of 6.138 million people as of 2020. The city has the third-largest skyline in the U.S. with over 300 high-rises, 58 of which exceed 491 ft (150 m).

Florida

Florida

Florida is a state located in the Southeastern region of the United States. Florida is bordered to the west by the Gulf of Mexico, to the northwest by Alabama, to the north by Georgia, to the east by the Bahamas and Atlantic Ocean, and to the south by the Straits of Florida and Cuba; it is the only state that borders both the Gulf of Mexico and the Atlantic Ocean. Spanning 65,758 square miles (170,310 km2), Florida ranks 22nd in area among the 50 states, and with a population of over 21 million, is the third-most populous. The state capital is Tallahassee and the most populous city is Jacksonville. The Miami metropolitan area, with a population of almost 6.2 million, is the most populous urban area in Florida and the ninth-most populous in the United States; other urban conurbations with over one million people are Tampa Bay, Orlando, and Jacksonville.

Life in the United States

Oliva then went on to win the Mr. Olympia title three years in a row, at 5 feet 10 inches and at a contest weight of 225–245lbs. Oliva's 1968 Mr. Olympia win was uncontested. In 1969, he won his third consecutive Mr. Olympia by beating a Mr. Europe, a Mr. International, and four-time Mr. Universe winner Arnold Schwarzenegger. In his 1977 autobiography, Arnold: The Education of a Bodybuilder, Arnold tells of their first encounter: Then for the first time, I saw Sergio Oliva in person. I understood why they called him the Myth. It was as jarring as if I'd walked into a wall. He destroyed me. He was so huge, he was so fantastic, there was no way I could even think of beating him. I admitted my defeat and felt some of my pumps go away. I tried. But I'd been so taken back by my first sight of Sergio Oliva that I think I settled for 2nd place before we walked out on the stage I never like to admit defeat, but I thought Sergio was better. There were no two ways about it.[6]

However, Schwarzenegger won his first Mr. Olympia title by edging the Myth the following year with a score of 4-3. Oliva was banned from competing in the 1971 IFBB Mr. Olympia because he competed in the 1971 NABBA Mr. Universe. This was extremely controversial because Schwarzenegger had competed for this very same contest the year before and without Sergio to challenge Arnold, some felt that the contest was fixed. I'd coasted to my second title as Mr.Olympia, in Paris in 1971. The only possible challenger had been Sergio - nobody else was in my league - and he'd been barred from the contest, along with others, because of a dispute between federations.[7]

In 1972, under the High-Intensity Training (HIT) system of Arthur Jones, the designer of Nautilus training equipment, Oliva challenged Schwarzenegger for the 1972 Olympia in Essen Germany. By all accounts, Sergio was in his all-time greatest shape and completely confident he would regain the Mr. Olympia title. Arnold beat Sergio into 2nd place and was crowned Mr Olympia yet again. He said in Essen, it seemed like all the top Bodybuilders turned up at their very best except for me. Sergio was back, even more impressive than I remembered.[8] Compared with all of the other Bodybuilders I've ever faced, Sergio really was in a class by himself. I was struck by that again the minute we were onstage. It was so hard to look impressive next to him with those incredible thighs, that impossibly tiny waist, those incredible triceps.[9]

In 1985, at the age of 44, Oliva returned for an attempt at the famed Mr. Olympia title one last time. He could manage just an 8th-place finish, the same as the year before. Robert Kennedy, the publisher of the magazine MuscleMag International, wrote, Anyone who loves the sport of bodybuilding knows the name of Sergio Oliva, known as the Myth. I greatly admired him and consider him to be the all-time world's greatest physique. I saw him in competition many times, including his shows against Arnold. There is no doubt that with his wide shoulders and narrow hip structure he was superior to any other Bodybuilder of his generation. Sergio was not only the most aesthetic bodybuilder on stage but also the biggest... Sergio Oliva is considered by most to be the world's most genetically gifted bodybuilder... He set a whole new standard for competitive bodybuilding; loved by millions, revered by many, and feared by some. He was so huge and extremely proportioned that he used to bring chills to his adversaries. This is how he acquired the name of the Myth."[10]

Personal

  • He served the city of Chicago as a police officer for more than 25 years.[11]
  • In 1986, Sergio survived being shot by his then-wife Arleen Garrett. He sustained 5 bullet wounds to his abdomen from a '.38' special.[12]

Bodybuilding titles

  • 1963 Mr Chicago – 1st
  • 1964 Mr Illinois – 1st
  • 1964 Mr America / AAU – 7th
  • 1965 Junior Mr America / AAU – 2nd + “Most Muscular” trophy
  • 1965 Mr America / AAU – 4th + “Most Muscular” trophy
  • 1966 Junior Mr America / AAU – 1st + “Most Muscular” trophy
  • 1966 Mr America / AAU – 2nd + “Most Muscular” trophy
  • 1966 Mr World / IFBB – 1st in the “Tall” category + Overall Winner
  • 1966 Mr Universe / IFBB – 1st
  • 1966 Mr. Olympia / IFBB – 4th
  • 1967 Mr. Olympia / IFBB – 1st
  • 1967 Universe / IFBB – 1st overall
  • 1968 Mr. Olympia / IFBB – 1st (uncontested)
  • 1969 Mr. Olympia / IFBB – 1st
  • 1970 Mr World / AAU (Pro) – 2nd in the “Tall” category
  • 1970 Mr. Olympia / IFBB – 2nd
  • 1971 Universe / NABBA (Pro) – 2nd in the “Tall” category
  • 1972 Mr. Olympia / IFBB – 2nd
  • 1972 Mr Galaxy / WBBG – 1st
  • 1973 Mr International, Mr Azteca / IFBB (Pro) – 1st
  • 1973 Mr Galaxy / WBBG – 1st
  • 1974 Mr International / WBBG (Pro) – 1st
  • 1975 Mr Olympus / WBBG – 1st
  • 1976 Mr Olympus / WBBG – 1st
  • 1977 Pro World Championships / WABBA – 1st
  • 1978 Mr Olympus / WBBG – 1st
  • 1980 Pro World Championships / WABBA – 1st
  • 1980 Professional World cup / WABBA – 1st
  • 1981 Professional World Cup / WABBA – 1st
  • 1984 Mr. Olympia / IFBB – 8th
  • 1984 Professional Mid-States Championships / WABBA – 1st
  • 1985 Mr. Olympia / IFBB – 8th [14]

Discover more about Bodybuilding titles related topics

1966 Mr. Olympia

1966 Mr. Olympia

The 1966 Mr. Olympia contest was an IFBB professional bodybuilding competition held in September 1966 at the Brooklyn Academy of Music in Brooklyn, New York. It was the 2nd Mr. Olympia competition held.

1967 Mr. Olympia

1967 Mr. Olympia

The 1967 Mr. Olympia contest was an IFBB professional bodybuilding competition held in September 1967 at the Brooklyn Academy of Music in Brooklyn, New York. It was the 3rd Mr. Olympia competition held.

1968 Mr. Olympia

1968 Mr. Olympia

The 1968 Mr. Olympia contest was an IFBB professional bodybuilding competition held in September 1968 at the Brooklyn Academy of Music in Brooklyn, New York. It was the 4th Mr. Olympia competition held.

1969 Mr. Olympia

1969 Mr. Olympia

The 1969 Mr. Olympia contest was an IFBB professional bodybuilding competition held in September 1969 at the Brooklyn Academy of Music in Brooklyn, New York. It was the 5th Mr. Olympia competition held.

1970 Mr. Olympia

1970 Mr. Olympia

The 1970 Mr. Olympia contest was an IFBB professional bodybuilding competition held in September 1970 at The Town Hall in New York City, New York. It was the 6th Mr. Olympia competition held.

1972 Mr. Olympia

1972 Mr. Olympia

The 1972 Mr. Olympia contest was an IFBB professional bodybuilding competition held in October 1972 at the Handelshof in Essen, West Germany. It was the 8th Mr. Olympia competition held.

1984 Mr. Olympia

1984 Mr. Olympia

The 1984 Mr. Olympia contest was an IFBB professional bodybuilding competition held in October 1984 at the Felt Forum in New York City, New York.

1985 Mr. Olympia

1985 Mr. Olympia

The 1985 Mr. Olympia contest was an IFBB professional bodybuilding competition held on October 26, 1985, at the Forest National Theatre in Brussels, Belgium.

Source: "Sergio Oliva", Wikipedia, Wikimedia Foundation, (2022, November 25th), https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sergio_Oliva.

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References
  1. ^ a b "Sergio Oliva - Greatest Physiques". greatestphysiques.com. 6 July 2016.
  2. ^ "Sergio Oliva Famous Death". Khoolood. 2014-11-10. Retrieved 2022-11-25.
  3. ^ ctosadmin (1970-01-01). "Oliva, Sergio". Cubans in America (in Spanish). Retrieved 2022-11-25.
  4. ^ "Sergio Oliva - Cuban bodybuilder | WikiZ". Retrieved 2022-11-25.
  5. ^ Wayne, Rick (1985). Muscle Wars. St. Martin's Press. p. 95. ISBN 0-312-55353-6.
  6. ^ Arnold the Education of a Bodybuilder by Arnold Schwarzenegger and Douglas Kent Hall, published by Simon & Schuster 1977, page 97 ISBN 0-671-79748-4
  7. ^ TOTAL RECALL by Arnold Schwarzenegger and Peter Petre, pg. 144 (Simon & Schuster 2012) [hereinafter "TOTAL RECALL"]
  8. ^ TOTAL RECALL, pg. 144
  9. ^ TOTAL RECALL, pg. 128
  10. ^ Robert Kennedy, Best Selling Author, Editor, and Publisher of MuscleMag International; Sergio Oliva, Building the Ultimate Physique by Sergio Oliva and Frank Marchante, Foreword (Gras Publishing Company 2007)
  11. ^ "Simplyshredded Exclusive Profile: Sergio Oliva "The Myth" [1941 - 2012] | SimplyShredded.com". simplyshredded.com. 2012-11-15. Retrieved 2022-11-25.
  12. ^ "Ex-mr. Universe Turned Cop Shot In Quarrel With His Wife". Chicago Tribune. July 25, 1986. Retrieved June 20, 2015.
  13. ^ Kiran, Joseph. "How did Sergio Oliva (The Myth) die?". www.sportskeeda.com. Retrieved 2022-11-25.
  14. ^ Sergio Oliva the Myth, Building the Ultimate Physique by Sergio Oliva and Frank Marchante 2007 page 320 {by Gras Publishing company}
External links
Mr. Olympia
Preceded by:
Larry Scott
First (1967) Succeeded by:
himself
Preceded by:
himself
Second (1968) Succeeded by:
himself
Preceded by:
himself
Third (1969) Succeeded by:
Arnold Schwarzenegger

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