When the Men’s 212 Olympia Champion Keone Pearson came onto the scene he was dubbed all natural. People didn’t believe it.
The 2023 Men’s 212 champion, Keone Pearson exploded onto the bodybuilding scene and has been a rising star in the Men’s 212 Division. But what was even more incredible were the all natural claims that started circulating shortly after he started gaining traction in early 2019. Many people thought it was unbelievable due to his size and shocking physique. It got to the point that PJ Braun took Keone Pearson to get a blood test to prove he was in fact all natural. This seemed to do little to dissuade the non believers. In our latest GI Exclusive interview, Keone Pearson addresses the controversy with a year of hindsight behind him. Is it worth it for a bodybuilder to be known publicly as all natural?
Keone Pearson’s story is only one of many. There are a handful of bodybuilders with amazing physiques who have been publicly known as all natural at some point in time. Each and every one of them are met with disbelief. The biggest example of this is Mike O’Hearn who has claimed he is all natural for decades. There’s a perception among bodybuilding fans and spectators that certain levels of physiques are simply impossible to achieve without performance enhancing drugs. Physiques like Mike O’Hearn and Keone Pearson’s fall under that category.
Keone doesn’t claim to be natural anymore. He simply stays quiet and works hard to be the best bodybuilder he can be. The truth is that Keone never wanted to make a big spectacle about starting out all natural at all. Blackston Labs CEO, and Muscle Mogul PJ Braun was simply so shocked at the quality of Keone’s physique that he had to get undeniable proof that Keone was actually natural. The blood test results went viral – and the biggest irony was that it didn’t lead to more people believing it. Instead they buckled down in disbelief.
Which led us to the ultimate question we asked Keone Pearson – is it worth it to be publicly known as all natural in bodybuilding? It seems like the default reaction from fans is disbelief – and then the athlete has to fight uphill against that moving forward. Keone agrees and says that he doesn’t care about natural or not natural. He just cares about being a good athlete on his terms. He wants his physique to speak for him. It might seem impressive to be known for your amazing physique without the aid of PEDs – but ultimately the negative attention just isn’t worth it.
You can watch Keone Pearson address his thoughts on the entire natural controversy in our latest GI Exclusive interview segment above!