Written by Steve Blechman
23 October 2023

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King Ronnie: The Greatest Mr. Olympia of all Time

By Steve Blechman


Dedicated bodybuilding fans who know their history love to debate the question, who was the greatest Mr. Olympia champion of all time? Only 17 men have ever held the title since the inception of the event in 1965, yet many feel the GOAT (Greatest of All Time) is the man on this month’s cover, eight-time Mr. Olympia Ronnie Coleman. While Ronnie took the idea of what the human body was capable of achieving in terms of sheer muscularity, size and conditioning to an all-new level, it isn’t just his physique that justifies the title of King Ronnie.


Few are as qualified to speak on this subject as Giles Thomas. Not only is he an astute historian of the sport and one of its top journalists, but Giles also happened to be head of the UK division of Ronnie's supplement brand, Ronnie Coleman Signature Series, and now co-hosts Ronnie’s “Nothing But a Podcast” for Ronnie’s YouTube channel. Giles makes a strong case for him in “King Ronnie.”


“Tiger” Thomas breaks down Ronnie’s physique for all eight of his Mr. Olympia wins, comparing and contrasting various looks that ranged from 247 to 296 pounds. In the interest of fair play, he also runs down the best looks of multiple Olympia champions Lee Haney, Dorian Yates, Jay Cutler, and Phil Heath. In the end, only one man can wear the crown, and that’s Ronnie Coleman. Yeah buddy!


MD gives you another look at Ronnie with an update on his current projects, which includes collaborating with Panatta, the worldwide fitness company and titan manufacturer of gym equipment based in Italy. Ronnie is working with Panatta to develop a Signature Series line of equipment bearing his name, so more lifters worldwide can experience the same exceptional quality that he demands for his own workouts and that Panatta is renowned for. Read more in “8-Time Mr. Olympia Champion: Ronnie Coleman Update.”


Bodybuilders have been obsessed with building huge arms since the very beginning, and exceptional biceps and triceps development has always been a prerequisite for any man hoping to step onto the Mr. Olympia stage. Some of the greatest guns of all time have belonged to Mr. Olympia champions like Larry Scott, Sergio Oliva, Arnold, Ronnie, and Phil Heath. The men heading to Orlando in hopes of leaving with a Sandow trophy are all fully loaded with astonishing arms, and MD has compiled the routines and best tips from the top contenders heading to the 2023 Mr. Olympia. See what you can take to the gym to get your own bi’s and tri’sexploding with new size after reading “Build Mr. Olympia Arms! Routines and Tips From the Top Champions.”


At first glance, the men who placed first and second at the 2022 Mr. Olympia, Hadi Choopan and Derek Lunsford, could not be more different. They each come from different cultures and speak different languages, but it turns out they have a few things in common. Both men came to the Open class from the 212 division, and neither would have been considered viable candidates for the Mr. Olympia title not so long ago. And their physiques share many of the same attributes: wide structures, especially given their short stature, loads of thick muscle mass, and excellent condition. Ron Harris takes a closer look at these two warriors and their respective paths to greatness in“Hadi vs. Derek:A Tale of Two Olympia Champions.”


In an age where it’s common to see pros make only sporadic appearances on the contest stage and skip entire seasons, Akim Williams has competed in a staggering 31 pro shows since his debut in the spring of 2014. That’s not the only reason he warrants an extra level of respect; Akim is one man who won’t quit, or even complain, as the MuscleMeds athlete has rebounded with a vengeance from temporary roadblocks. “I still have my mass, my lines and shape, my small waist, the things that have taken me this far in the sport – so I’m not afraid to stand next to anyone,” he tells MD in “Akim Williams: The Brooklyn Beast Will Be Back in 2024!”


Muscular Development is your number one source for building muscle, and for the latest research and best science to enable you to train smart and effectively. Our team of physicians, industry experts and research scientists has these reports on improving performance this month:


“Training Intensity and Fat Loss” Fat Attack

“Is Post-Exercise Protein Timing Important for Muscle Growth?” Nutrition Performance

Top 10 Supplements for Building Muscle MassSupplement Performance

“Best Training Techniques for Size and Strength” Muscle Growth Update

“Testosterone: What’s Good for Bodybuilding May Not Be Good for Optimum Health”Testosterone

“Ronnie Coleman: Under the Microscope, the Genetics of a Champion” Bodybuilding Science


The rest of the book is packed to the binder as usual – making MD your one-stop, most authoritative source for optimizing muscular development with the latest cutting-edge research on training, nutrition, fat loss, performance-enhancing drugs, muscle growth and bodybuilding science – and exclusive information from the industry experts, insiders and bodybuilding legends who make it all happen. See you next month!


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