This week’s episode of “The Menace Podcast” featured a guest who host Dennis James called “the breakthrough star of last year’s Olympia.” 2020 New York Pro champion Iain Valliere joined DJ, who placed 7th on the biggest stage of 2020 in Orlando, FL. Their conversation shed a lot of light on the Canadian superstar, including a glimpse of his athletic background before he got into bodybuilding.

“Starting at 8, 9, 10 years old, and all the way through high school, I was a track athlete. So I was a sprinter, I ran 100, 200 meters, I did long jump, so I was always someone who was very, you know, into the individuality of what work I put in, and what results I got out of it. I’m not depending on the success of other people. It was completely what I put in.”

He did play football as well, and that was what introduced him to weight training. The results he saw from the training were what led him down the path to the career he has today.

“I just started getting into that groove where I enjoyed feeling stronger, getting more muscular, and I could see that translate how it was playing football and everything else. Then that spiraled away from football and strictly in to the gym, and then as it ended up, I ended up in bodybuilding shows, and the rest is history, right?”

He would take to the stage for the first time in 2010, and never looked back. He would earn his pro card in 2014 at the Amateur Olympia in Acapulco, Mexico. It would take four years before he secured his first victory, which was the “Big Man Revolution” contest in Spain. That put him on the Olympia stage for the first time. After not qualifying in 2019, his 2020 New York Pro victory punched his ticket to last year’s Olympia, where he secured his place as one of the elite athletes in the sport.

“The pressure is up for sure, but it’s also a big sense of validation for me. It’s one of those things that I’m sure all bodybuilders have experienced. When you see yourself in the gym, and you see certain progress photos, you know that it’s there. You know what it’s capable of, and then and step onstage and I’m like ‘this is not what I was seeing leading up to the show.’ I step up at New York, I was like ‘this is better, but I still know I have so much more in there, you know.’ I think the Olympia was the first time in my career that I was 100% happy with my look, and I could be like, ‘OK, this is truly me and what I am capable of.’”

The next time you’ll see Valliere onstage will be the 2021 Toronto Pro. Until then, you can see him discuss several topics with James in this hourlong interview, including who he has his eye on for future contests, his experiences on social media, his work with brother-in-law Chris Bumstead, and more. Catch the show in its entirety as well as every episode of TMP on the M&F YouTube channel as well as on Spotify.

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