Hadi Choopan and his legendary coach Hany Rambod detail the final two months of his training prep that led to more muscle mass and Choopan’s 2022 Mr. Olympia victory.
2022 is certainly the year of Hadi Choopan. Not only did he make history as the first Iranian to win the Mr. Olympia, he is also featured in the upcoming documentary Generation Iron Persia (available now right here). It’s fair to say that Choopan accomplished some incredible things in his transformation into Mr. Olympia. And based on our post-Olympia interview with Choopan and his trainer Hany Rambod, Choopan truly pushed his body to new limits. In our latest GI Exclusive interview, Hany Rambod reveals that Hadi Choopan gained 10 pounds of muscle in just 2 months leading into the Mr. Olympia.
Before the actual 2022 Olympia weekend, many counted Hadi Choopan out. Due to his smaller stature and an impressive lineup of bodybuilders this year, fans, experts, and fellow athletes predicted that Choopan would drop out of the top five. Instead, he rose up to number one.
According to Hany Rambod, the secret comes in Hadi Choopan’s incredible work ethic. We caught up with both Rambod and Choopan shortly after his 2022 Mr. Olympia victory. During our conversation, Rambod describes Choopan like a machine. It’s the reason his physique showed such incredible change year after year. It’s also the reason he is able to bring incredible conditioning that others cannot match.
Hadi Choopan’s work ethic is so intense, in fact, that Hany Rambod claims Choopan built up 10 pounds of muscle in the final two weeks of his prep. That is an incredible amount of growth during a period of time when some athletes start cutting down from the off-season.
As for Hadi Choopan, he thanks much of his victory to his coach Hany Rambod. Calling him the greatest coach in the world, Choopan states he knew with 100% certainty that he would become Mr. Olympia the minute he started working with Rambod. He also details how bodybuilding is his life. That he would sacrifice nearly anything to become the best in the world. And now that he’s finally achieved it, he will do whatever it takes to hold onto the title.
When asked how many Mr. Olympia’s Hadi Choopan wanted to win – he stated that he would want to at least match seven Mr. Olympia titles. Why exactly seven? Because Choopan couldn’t accept anything less than Hany Rambod’s other Olympia champion – Phil Heath.
Hadi Choopan’s rollercoaster journey from Men’s 212 to Men’s Open Mr. Olympia champion
Hadi Choopan is now one of many Men’s 212 athletes who moved into the Men’s Open division to great success. Derek Lunsford also made this move in 2022. He ended up placing second right behind Choopan. Think about that for a moment – the top two bodybuilders in Men’s Open were both Men’s 212 athletes.
Hadi Choopan’s transition from Men’s 212 into Men’s Open was somewhat controversial at the time. Many thought he would not be able to compare to his fellow competitors who would bring in much bigger mass monster size. Instead, Choopan placed third in his first ever Men’s Open Mr. Olympia competition.
Of course, the transition between divisions was not his only challenge. As an Iranian citizen, it was near impossible for him to get a visa allowing him to compete at the Mr. Olympia in the United States. After missing the competition in 2018, he ultimately received a last minute via just days before the 2019 Olympia.
This journey in 2019 was chronicled in detail by the Generation Iron Network – and is featured heavily in our latest documentary Generation Iron Persia. The film showcases multiple Iranian athletes as they battle for Olympia’s success. Part of a new wave of Persian athletes that are making a big splash in the sport.
The film provides deep insight into the behind the scenes of Hadi Choopan’s earliest Mr. Olympia competition. It reveals the earlier origins of the man who would one day become the Mr. Olympia champion that we see today.