RIP 3x Mr Olympia Sergio Oliva

IFBB Pro and 3x Mr Olympia Sergio "The Myth" Oliva passed away earlier tonight from kidney failure.

Mention “The Myth” in bodybuilding circles and you’re likely to get a reaction ranging from broad smiles to incredulous head shaking. Sergio Oliva earned every bit of his famous moniker by building a physique not seen

Mediterranean Pork Stir-Fry
Sam Kaplan / M+F Magazine

before or since his three-year reign as Mr. Olympia. His tiny waist and bone structure defied the shapely mass he packed on every inch of his physique. He was indeed The Myth.

The former Cuban National weightlifting champ took to bodybuilding like an eagle to soaring, so much so that within four years of defecting to the United States from his homeland he had won the Mr. World and Mr. Universe titles and competed in the 1966 Mr. Olympia, taking fourth behind winner Larry Scott, Harold Poole and Chuck Sipes. But the Sergio that stood onstage at the ’66 O was only a preview of the bodybuilder he would become the following year.

So dominant was he during his Olympia reign that he defended his title uncontested in 1968. In 1969, however, he found himself in a titanic battle when a towering 22-year-old Austrian with an unpronounceable surname and confidence to spare stepped onto the stage. It was the last time Arnold Schwarzenegger would go down in defeat in a bodybuilding contest.

We are sorry to see the a legend taken from us, so may his name and his accomplishments may forever remain in our memories and our hearts.

Steak Fajita Tacos With Avocado Crema
Sam Kaplan / M+F Magazine

Sesame Scallop Stir-Fry
Sam Kaplan / M+F Magazine