How Derek Joe Won 2021 Natural Olympia Classic Physique

Derek Joe 2021 Natural Olympia
Image via Instagram @djoe.hype

Derek Joe leaned on companionship to win Men’s Classic Physique Open at the 2021 Natural Olympia. 

Despite being fresh to the sport of natural bodybuilding, Derek Joe shined bright at the Golden Nugget Las Vegas Hotel & Casino for the 2021 Natural Olympia on Saturday, November 13. With the encouragement of friends, a friendly foe, and the bodybuilding community, he secured first place in the Men’s Classic Physique Open. 

Derek Joe’s journey to this feat wasn’t without mental setbacks. He competed in his first-ever amateur bodybuilding event in 2020 at the Grand Canyon Classic. Although he got second place, it was discouraging for him, and he almost gave up on competing in bodybuilding. Here’s what Derek Joe had to say when reminiscing on Instagram about his first-time competing as a bodybuilder:

“I competed in my first INBA show as an amateur at the Grand Canyon classic in 2020 and got 2nd place (no pro qualification). I admit I was a little discouraged and lost the desire to compete again later that year as originally planned. Alex @flexn__lex another top pro happened to be competing that day as well. He told me, and I’m paraphrasing, “you have a pro physique, just work on your conditioning and get leaner…I’ll see you at the Olympia.” If it wasn’t for that statement from Alex and encouragement from my friends @ricobravo and @adjustingservant who were there giving their support I may not have decided to compete in Las Vegas and I wouldn’t be where I am today.”

You can check out his complete statement on Instagram below.

Before clinching the Men’s Classic Physique Open at 2021 Natural Olympia, Derek Joe was just shy of winning the Classic Physique at Mr. America 2021, coming in second place.

Natural Bodybuilding 

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Natural bodybuilding requires all athletes to undergo drug testing through the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) – modern drug testing for professional sports. The International Natural Bodybuilding Association/Professional Natural Bodybuilding Association (INBA/PNBA) offers athletes up to $100,000 in cash prizes. They also put their athletes through rigorous drug testing. Nevertheless, Derek Joe exhibits that the sport is about much more than prizes and strict guidelines but camaraderie above all. 

Derek Joe Training 

Derek Joe is also an International Sports Sciences Association Certified Personal Trainer (ISSA CPT). Joe helps people get a better quality of life without putting them through fad diets. 

He likes to incorporate unilateral movements – training one limb at a time – to prepare his physique for competition. He believes they help fix any muscular imbalances and maximize his strength on bilateral exercises – requiring both limbs to perform a movement. 

Below you can find a demonstration of him performing cross Romanian deadlifts (RDL) + reverse lunges: 

Derek Joe shows us how an encouraging support system can help you reach any aspirations you have. And to never give up, regardless of any mental roadblocks you may encounter along the way. Although his career is just getting started, he’s gaining respect in natural bodybuilding like his fellow competitor and veteran Philip Ricardo Jr. has obtained over the years.

Generation Iron would like to congratulate Derek Joe on winning the Men’s Classic Physique Open at 2021 Natural Olympia. 

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Terry Ramos
As a personal trainer and writer, Terry loves changing lives through coaching and the written word. Terry has a B.S. in Kinesiology and is an ACSM Certified Personal Trainer and ISSA Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist. He enjoys playing music, reading, and watching films when he's not writing or training.