T Nation

Can Larry Wheels Be a Top BB Pro?


#1

He is one of the most popular people in fitness community nowadays because of his unbelievable lifts in his youtube videos.

He competed twice in bodybuilding this year. Do you think he can be a top pro in the future like powerlifter turned bodybuilders Mike Francois or Ronnie Coleman?


#2

He can be a little successful but bodybuilding in general is not for him. First of all he is 6ft 1in. There has been no MR Olympia over the height of 6ft since Arnolds times. Secondly he has smallish calves , huge traps , and lagging legs even though he can squat insane weights. Third of all he can never get his conditioning on point. He can be successful but its unlikely that he will win to many shows even if he fully committed himself to bodybuilding. He should give powerlifting his 100%.


#3

For reference Ronnie Coleman is 5ft 11 and Mike Francois is 5ft 8.\
Lee Haney with Ronnie Coleman were the tallest and the average height is 5ft 7 for a MR.O.


#4

With that combination of genetics and work ethic he can do absolutely anything. Bodybuilding, powerlifting, whatever.


#5

It might take some years to change his proportions and become shaped more like a bb’r, but sure, he probably could.

Big piles of muscle /= body building physique.


#6

Being a successful power lifter doesn’t mean you’ve got enough muscle let alone enough built
Symmetrically to be a pro bodybuilder.

The rare freaks like Coleman and Francois changed their training quite a bit when they decided to pursue bodybuilding and Larry would have to do the same. Yes he is a freak no question, but as good as he looked (against no real competition if you check the lineup pics), he’s got a long way to go before people (who know what they’re talking about) are talking IfBB pro cards.

Ca he do it? He’s got the genetics, just a matter of time and even more drugs.

S


#7

Thats also what i think. He has a huge torso with relatively underdeveloped extremities and i dont believe that will change unless he switches to bodybuilding style training.


#8

Not to sound disparaging or anything, but at the local level, amateur npc contests, there usually aren’t really too many impressive physiques. This is where a taller individual with a solid build will stand out. It’s not so at the upper level shows.

S


#9

Yes, he can be an IFBB pro. But top IFBB pro along with high & consistent Olympia placing are probably very unlikely. I think Larry was in the show where the son of Lee Labrada got his pro card and he didn’t place. If you look at their physiques, they differ by miles.

But before worrying about being a top IFBB pro, he should worry about making up his damn mind if he wanna truly get into the next level, whether it is bodybuilding or powerlifting. You can certainly do well in both, but being at the top of the ladder at the highest level for both? Very unlikely, unless you are Jesus.


#10

Never heard of the guy until now. I just checked him out. Honestly, he should probably just stick to his YouTube thing at this point. That seems to be more fruitful than attempting an IFBB career.


#11

I realize it might have taken 10 more seconds of googling to notice, but he also happens to be a world-record-holding powerlifter.

Guys, try to stick with me here, has it ever occurred to you that one can make more money / increase their celebrity in the fitness community by doing this kind of crossover stuff (even as a pure stunt)?

There’s a reason that Hafthor Bjornsson is 100x better known than Brian Shaw in the general population - he’s played the game as a charismatic “showman” everywhere he goes and various entertainment and endorsements have followed. My friends pay virtually no attention to any of the strength sports but they’ve all heard of Thor. None of them knows about Shaw, Eddie Hall, much less any powerlifters, weightlifters or bodybuilders.


#12

Point taken. If he is a powerlifter, then he should definitely stick to YouTube.


#13

Based on this it looks like he’s going to move to strongman now too:


#14

Lol, gonna have to gain 100 lbs for strongman and cut 20 lbs for bodybuilding.


#15

So what if he is doing Youtube? You missed my point. The question was if Larry Wheels can be a top IFBB pro. Is doing crossover stuff beneficial to raise his popularity? it might, but that was not the question of this post, read again.

Can he do both and be fairly good at them? Yes, but at the highest level? No. Do I think he can qualify for the Mr. Olympia and at the same time break bench press WR? No. That’s like winning a Olympic gold medal in sprinting and marathon.


#16

Pretty sure it is due to the fact he is on Game of Thrones.


#17

Right, but that’s my point: the strength sports are all very, very much “niche” sports. If you want to make some cash off your name, most of that is going to come from outside the sports themselves. And that comes from building a name, a presence, a personality. Doing some crossover activities or making some YouTube videos - even if you don’t do all that well - introduce you to a new audience, drum up some interest, maybe build the broader interest that gets you the offer to be on GoT or in commercials or movies.


#18

Nah. Very few pro strongmen weigh 400 lbs. It just so happens that the 3 top guys right now do. At the Arnold this year, 10 of the very best in the world were competing, and 2 of them weighed right at 300. Several more were sub-350.

The fact is that if he learns the sport, he could earn a pro card within a year, unless he happens to be just absolutely terrible at moving events. That remains to be seen.

As to what Wheels SHOULD do: whatever makes him happy is the real answer. And from interviews, it sounds like he wants to be great at strongman, powerlifting and bodybuilding. Competitively speaking, I see no reason for him to stay in powerlifting. The dude has already set world records. He’s essentially already hit the ceiling of that sport.

I don’t think he’s ever going to hold the highest PL total ever, I don’t think he’ll ever be Mr Olympia, and I don’t think he’ll ever win WSM. But, I do believe that he can be a world record holder in powerlifting below SHW, He could land himself in the top 5 at an Arnold or WSM, and he could step on the Olympia stage as an IFBB pro at some point. Just reaching that level puts him among the absolute most elite competitors in each sport, and that would be an accomplishment we’ve never seen before. It’s really baffling to see some of you guys taking the mindset of ‘well if he can’t win the Olympia, no point in competing in bodybuilding, he should just stick to youtube.’ I don’t understand that mentality.


#19

Or you might get the offer because you look mean as hell while at a height of 6ft 9 and 300+ lbs.


#20

Larry competed at 242, he’d be 342 lbs at +100, and that’d be pretty par for the course.

That being said, the 100 lbs was a bit of an exaggeration. Still, 75 lbs.