by Christian Duque
Ok…, I’m not sure what to make of this and I certainly don’t want to mischaracterize what may very well just be Robby thinking out loud. Here’s the deal, the old-timers like to give advice, oftentimes unsolicited. They also tend to forget their wild youth, what supplements they took, and how hard they worked to achieving their goals. Robby battled with Frank Zane, Mike Mentzer, and Arnold. He was and is known as, The Black Prince, because he’s an iconic legend, who even at 70+ years of age, is still jacked. Now, in a recent post on social media, Robinson spoke directly to Big Ramy, making the case that The Egyptian Phenom was essentially playing with his health and should consider retiring.
Now, Ramy has been through a bit of a rollercoaster ride these last two years. He left the Camel Crew after a very successful run; he also went from being 2nd in the world and hailed by the bodybuilding press and fans as being the successor to Phil Heath, to dropping several placings down in 2018 and being all but ignored by the press and fans, today. Again, just stating facts.
There are very few people that even bring his name up anymore. That’s pretty shocking to those outside the industry, but to those of us in it, we see how the sport has changed, in just a matter of months. Shawn Rhoden is the new Mr. O, Brandon Curry upset the favorite, William Bonac, in Columbus, and last year’s Olympia Fan Champion, Roelly Winklaar, has created a big question mark in manys. Roelly says he’s fine and I saw him two weeks ago and he looked fine to me, but is he on his way to a Sandow? Who knows?
Also, the constant talk of comebacks by Phil Heath and Kai Greene have taken up a lot of the media highlights. A new team overseeing the Olympia, has also added some talk. All in all, as crazy as it sounds to say (even crazier to write), Ramy has become a bit of yesterday’s news. The question is, when has quitting ever fixed anything?
One thing I’ve noticed, particularly with the oldtimers, is that nostalgia may be clouding their judgment, and especially their recollection of the past. For example, when old time bodybuilders say it’s all drugs today, are they forgetting they probably took everything but the kitchen sink in their day? If what’s available today, would have been available then, are we to believe that the athletes of yesteryear would have raised moral objections and would have opted to keep the sport pure, as opposed to doing whatever it took to be competitive? Nostalgia is cool because you get to live again, but it’s also a bunch of bullshit, with all due respect.
I want to go on record, here and now, as saying that Ramy has a bright future in the sport and anyone saying the guy should quit, is, well, wrong. These guys are monitored closely by teams of doctors, they have sponsors that have their back and sometimes injuries will happen no matter what. I’ve seen guys tear pecs doing incline presses with 135. These are guys who can incline press 405 for clean reps, so if they get injured doing light warm-ups, then that’s just an injury that was bound to happen, no matter what. Injuries can be remedied, switching coaches takes time, and sometimes taking a breather to digest a less-than-favorable placing is ok, too. That being said, retirement shouldn’t be an option, so why even raise the point? Also, is there even a relationship between Robinson and Ramy, and if so, wouldn’t an email, DM, or phone call or text have been better?
I don’t want to even suggest it, but as a writer for Iron Magazine, I’d be remiss if I didn’t at least ponder the possibility. Big Ramy is a big name and that name, in any subject line or hashtag, will result in more hits. Robby is still somewhat of a draw and had some media headlines in his recent feud with Jerry Ward. I’m not sure what prompted Robinson’s post, but here we are, talking about it. The Black Prince may have had the best of intentions, but I don’t think the method he selected to relay the message was the best one – and – I wholeheartedly disagree with him and here’s why. Ramy is substantially downsizing in terms of mass, he’s taking a break, and to my knowledge, if he even is injured, I’m sure he’ll adhere to his doctors and undergo the best therapy available. There won’t be any corners cut, when it comes to bringing this champion back to 100%. Further to that point, he’s at a place in his career, where he and he only, is in the driver’s seat. Whatever he decides to do, we the fans, will support him.