“SIf you want to do something with your life, we’ll help you, but you go all the way.” Encouraged by his family, Rodrigue Chesnier left to live in the United States at the age of 21, obtaining an “athlete” visa. The hours of training follow one another, day after day.
The athlete’s involvement pays off since in 2018, he puts on his first big show on stage: he wins third place and wins his professional bodybuilder card.
This is the start of the dream: “It qualified me for the classic Arnold [du nom d’Arnold Schwarzenegger], in Ohio in 2019, the second most important competition in the world. I do 10e. It was unexpected and very striking.”
December 2020: it ends 9e to Mr Olympia. Finally, the fantasy becomes reality. Rodrigue Chesnier participates in the biggest professional bodybuilding competition in the world and carves out a special place among the Olympians. Following in the footsteps of Schwarzy is an ambition that has guided him since he was 15 years old. “Me, a little Frenchman, leaving and becoming someone in the US? I could hardly believe it, so making a top 10 at the Olympia is the achievement of what has always driven me”he confides.
“A revenge to take on last year”
The competition brings together important athletes from the International Bodybuilding and Fitness Federation. His titles are considered the highest honors in the industry. Arnold Schwarzenegger, Lee Haney or Ronnie Coleman are the references of this prestigious championship.
Last year, the enthusiast had major health problems, requiring a return to France and hospitalization for several months. “I’ve only done 13e to Mr Olympia 2021. Now I want to prove to people that was wrong. I have a revenge to take on last year when I was very sick, in a toxic relationship and with a bad state of mind. The competitor has a goal during the competition which begins Thursday in Las Vegas: to land a top 6 at Mr. Olympia, the Super Bowl of bodybuilding.
What daily life for such ambitions? Five to six hours of training and about five meals to hold each day. “I live for these five minutes on stage, he summarizes. We prepare ourselves for six months or even a year for this. This is happiness. In the moment, I really feel alive.”
Conversion in five years
Ambitious, the Niçois is already making up his own mind about his future: “For the moment I am concentrating on the body. I leave myself five years. Then I convert.” Hollywood, blockbusters and large screens. The sportsman hopes soon to trade his place as a competitor for a seat well located in the world of cinema.
At the mythical Gold’s Gym, gym in Venice beach (California, United States), a lot of celebrities cross his path. “Thanos [super-vilain de l’univers Marvel], a friend of mine plays it. We often train together. This place opens doors and creates contacts!”he assures.
Within the City of Angels, theamerican dream of the young man follows its course: “Being from Nice, I find myself in California. There is great respect for everyone’s personality and a real freedom of being.”
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At 27, this Riviera bodybuilder will participate in Mr. Olympia, the Super Bowl of bodybuilding in Las Vegas
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