Nick Walker gets honest about his 2022 bodybuilding prep and emphasizes the importance of a connection with his coach.

Nick Walker is one of the most hyped pro bodybuilders currently barreling towards the 2022 Mr. Olympia. And the hype comes with good reason. His rise to stardom is well earned with an incredible physique – and impressive fifth place finish at the 2021 Mr. Olympia. Many hope to see him further improve this year – but a back-and-forth change in coaches have others worried. In Generation Iron and Barbend’s latest episode of The Mike O’Hearn Show, Mike O’Hearn talks with Nick Walker about his contest prep, working again with Matt Jansen, and his bodybuilding origins.

With just nine weeks left before the 2022 Mr. Olympia, the entire industry is buzzing with excitement. Every update and every new statement from the top pro bodybuilders in contention is now under a spotlight. This couldn’t be more true for Nick Walker, perhaps one of the most promising pro bodybuilders currently rising through the ranks.

That’s why Mike O’Hearn wanted to sit down with Nick Walker to discuss in detail his bodybuilding origins, his mindset and method behind bodybuilding, and talk shop about his most recent Olympia prep in 2022. The interview was full of such great content – we’ve decided to break it into two parts. Let’s jump into the first half of their discussion below and stay tuned next week for part 2!

Nick Walker Gets Honest About His 2022 Olympia Prep And Returning Back To Coach Matt Jansen

Right at the start of the year, one of the more shocking headlines hit outlets regarding Nick Walker. After great success in 2021 and a fifth place finish at Mr. Olympia, Walker split ways with his coach Matt Jansen. Many fans worried that this would lead to a setback for Walker at the upcoming Olympia. However, the shockwaves settled after Walker set himself up with Dominick Mutascio (aka Dom Supersliced) and his off season physique updates seemed on point. 

Waves got rocky again just this past month, when Nick Walker did a 180 and returned back to Matt Jansen to finish off the final 12 weeks of his Olympia contest prep. Is a switch this late in the game a risk? Or is it exactly what he needs moving from the off season into final contest prep? The only person who really knows that answer is Walker himself – and he decided to open up to Mike O’Hearn a bit about the entire process.

“I’ll be honest, this one [2022 contest prep] was definitely a rocky start,” Nick Walker stated to Mike O’Hearn. He continued:

“With a lot of changes that I had happen this year, that happened to me. It was mentally it was hard. And I felt like I was off to a very slow rocky start.”

But Nick Walker didn’t dwell too long on the rocky beginnings to his contest prep. Why? Because as of this week he feels 100% on point and where he needs to be. He spoke further about his return to Matt Jansen and his current progress:

“Then me and Matt linked back up at like 12 weeks out. And now I feel like I’m really rolling now. I feel like where we need to be. We’re in a good spot for nine weeks out. I don’t feel I’m behind, I don’t necessarily feel like I’m ahead. But for nine weeks out I feel like I’m exactly where I need to be. And now my body is really starting to get in a groove so I feel like my body is going to take off now.”

It seems ultimately that Nick Walker blamed his own mental state as the reason for his rough beginnings during the offseason. But he overcame them and has been feeling extremely confident in these final 12 weeks of contest prep. And if his recent physique update photos are any indication – he may not be wrong.

Walker Opens Up On The Vital Role His Parents Played In His Bodybuilding Origins

Nick Walker has been very transparent in the past about his past trauma and the effect it has had on his entire life. When speaking with Mike O’Hearn, he goes into more detail about how his life after being molested led him into bodybuilding – and how vital his parents were in helping him succeed into the pro bodybuilder he is today.

As a kid, Nick Walker was angry, always getting into fights, and falling into a path of drugs. He didn’t know where to place his pent up anger. But one healthy outlet he recognized was weightlifting. The only problem was, lifting weights only take up one to two hours per day. He needed something more. Something to set him on a more mentally health path and away from fights and drug use.

Once he learned about bodybuilding as a sport, everything changed. He was able to use that weightlifting escape and expand it into an entire lifestyle of bodybuilding. He was also lucky enough to have a support group in the form of his parents – who let him go into the sometimes extreme world of competitive bodybuilding.

While his mother was on the fence at first, she has become one of his biggest supporters as he found his footing in the sport. Now his mother is so supportive, Walker claims she even gives interviews after events he competes at. Walker sees his mother as someone he can be completely honest with – and will get honest feedback in return.

When Walker gets caught in his head looking over his physique in the mirror every day – wondering if he is on point or spiraling into a weak physique – he turns to his mother by sending her a photo. She gives honest feedback. He trusts it in the same way he trusts his coach’s input. It helps keep him on point.

“I go to her for a lot of things,” Nick Walker notes then continues.

“Even though 9 times out of ten I know I won’t like the answer. But I still go to her because I know I want her opinion. And she’s always been that one person who will always shoot me straight no matter what.”

Nick Walker puts the ultimate button on how important his parents’ support has been in his bodybuilding journey as well:

“If it wasn’t for them [Walker’s parents], I wouldn’t be who I am today for sure.”

Wrap Up

Nick Walker and Mike O’Hearn go into extreme detail on many other topics, such as Walker’s current nutrition plan, how he feels about lifting heavy weight vs light weight, and the biggest misconception people have about his meteoric and fast rise in the pro leagues.

You can watch Nick Walker’s full comments in part 1 of our latest episode of The Mike O’Hearn Show above. Make sure to swing back around next week for part 2 and don’t forget to tune in every Friday for new episodes only on the Generation Iron Fitness Network or wherever podcasts are downloaded.

Derek Dufour has been managing all digital operations on the Generation Iron Network for over six years. He currently manages a team of editors, writers, and designers to provide up-to-date content across the GI Network.