INTERVIEW WITH ROBERTO EUSEBIO
BY EMANUELE PIZZI
INTERVIEW WITH ROBERTO EUSEBIO – Emanuele Pizzi
If I were to look for a model, who over time has been able to wisely shape his body without exceeding its harmoniousness, it is certainly Roberto Eusebio, an example of how body building – practiced constantly – can change the nature of a body. As soon as I proposed the interview to Roberto, I immediately received his affirmative answer and his maximum availability indicates great simplicity despite his competitive background.
How many years have you been in the world of body building?
And what was the spark that triggered the passion?
I was fifteen years old when the doctor advised me, indeed forced me, to go to a gym (there were no fitness centers yet). I weighed 59 kilos, for a height of one meter and eighty centimeters; I had a kyphotic attitude, with anteversion of the pelvis and a scoliotic curve of the spine began to accentuate: in short, that type of man defined as an “invertebrate”.
I’m joking, but it’s true, I had serious problems! Friends called me thin! I was a very insecure, introverted boy, I did not adore team games as I was structurally and psychologically weak, therefore very fragile. My introversion led me to an insecurity that limited the opportunities that life could offer me, in fact, I studied, read, watched TV, this was the maximum physical activity I did… Watching TV, in the years 1981 – 1985 , I began to appreciate those physicists that the bodybuilding circles and the cinema offered us, like the great athlete Lou Ferrigno, this weak man but who when they made him irritate by magic transformed into the incredible Hulk, invincible, with those muscles no one could influence in his way of being, or the great Arnold in Conan the Barbarian, with his mighty muscular strength against the forces of nature, and so on with Hercules, played by Steve Rees, and Stallone with Rambo, Rocky, etc…. These characters inspired me with a certain certainty and a certain inner strength, which in my imaginary world made me invincible. !! Despite this, I did not go crazy for physical activity in the gym, on the contrary it was an abnormal fatigue for me. Why should I have made such an effort? I spent the first three years in the gym, supervised by my parents who checked if I really attended or if, like at school, I was blind. I never liked being forced to do something I didn’t like doing! Like everyone else!
When my parents gave up to the categorical refusal that I wanted to go to the gym again, just then I began to get really passionate about it! At about nineteen I reassessed it: after all, it was also pleasant, I am referring above all to the presence of the girls! Even if my insecurity limited me only to look at them … I had done three years without seeing even a small muscle that could motivate me to continue, I had changed at least a hundred training schedules; so I tried to analyze the reason for my failure. My workouts were based on lifting weights and not on congesting the muscles; what does it mean? I concentrated too much on loading and I got tired (like a longshoreman), but the solution was much simpler: a little load was enough to squeeze every muscle district well. But the truth is that it was enough for me to look well inside myself, I began to love myself, thus starting a long study of who I was as I was, what sensations did the training give me, what endorphins did my body produce to give me all that pleasure? and above all that security in me that I was looking for so much? I looked like a fitness university student: with every single rep it seemed that I was thinking about who knows what, in reality I was just connecting the brain to what I was doing. In three months I “exploded”: I got what I had never achieved in years, but above all I began to appreciate how important it was to know me … At twenty I already weighed 76 kilos, a beast of muscles, now my friends defined me that way.
I no longer followed training schedules, I went on instinct, I performed exercises that gave me pleasure, exercises that calmed me and made the anger inside me like a supply of energy to be dosed when needed in the other activities that life offered me; he was so convinced to go deeper than what I was learning and I began to enroll in courses to become an instructor: by now I was really convinced and excited! At the age of twenty-six I faced the first competition: I looked, my trainer told me, “a big but smooth potato, without a minimum of definition”. In fact, I did not classify, in fact I don’t even want to remember it. In addition to the physical, there was also a lack of harmony between body and mind in order to be able to express my potential on stage. It was not just a matter of growing in the muscular structure, the real challenge at that point was also evolving in the way of thinking, of perceiving reality, of proposing my ideas about life to myself and to others. Something still did not make me credible the effort I was making. The physical commitment that had finally found an answer on a concrete level moved at that point on an emotional and psychological level. I needed to perceive the space I occupied, the movements with which I expressed myself, the contents that my mind and heart wanted to make public. So I turned to a famous choreographer and dancer from Padua who called me “a piece of wood”! Yet, the more I compared myself to other athletes, the more I realized that my potential was exceptional: small joint joints emphasizing muscle roundness, perfect bisiliac to bisacromial axis ratio, height in the standard, just lacking a little muscle quality that I could only achieve with power; but alas, I liked to eat!
Years of sacrifices took years, but after being selected at the Olimpia Academy, where the best Italian athletes took part, I ranked third out of 120 athletes. I had spent a year preparing: there were no friends, disco nights or anything else; a year dedicated to preparing the most coveted and important competition in Italy for height-weight athletes. I won the Accademia trophy (with relative excellent prize money). I remember that before the race the tension was sky high: I have never been so nervous in my life! As you all know, I did it: I won the title of NATIONAL OVERALL CHAMPION. We were 112 athletes, 22 in my overwhelmed category, and in the absolute, that is the first of all categories, I finished first, as a highlander: there will only be one left! I really felt like an immortal: an incredible feeling.
I remained at the top of my career for some time, but keeping my competitive commitment meant giving up too much of my private life, and so I decided to leave the world of competition, but remaining in the environment to transmit to other athletes or not, all my experiences.
INTERVIEW WITH ROBERTO EUSEBIO- E.: Do you remember your first competition? Try to tell it
R.: The first competition I did in 1996, in a remote village near Bergamo … a very bad organization in a building that was falling apart … I won my category …. there was not much competitiveness, few athletes. I chose that context because after so many years of training I needed to compare myself with others … and at the same time finally to overcome my shyness … to strip myself of my introversion in public.
I have never done this discipline for competitions, it has always been a way of working with my inner self, tied up, all from a great passion that has brought me to maturity up to now and I do not mean only professional, but of becoming aware of the most important value we have… ourselves !!
INTERVIEW WITH ROBERTO EUSEBIO – E.: The worst competition you ever participated in?
R.: The competition that left me the most bitterness was at the Italian Championships, organized in Rimini on the occasion of the Festival in 1998. In this competition I was really prepared, but I understood how important it was in this discipline, “bodyfitness”, also to prepare a good routine with tests functional. This resulted in a third place … well deserved … I had little work on the choreography.
Furthermore, from my point of view, the organization of competitions in contexts such as the fitness festival, make these take on a secondary importance, as if they were an outline of the exhibition center instead of the attention of business factories related to fitness. This is incorrect for athletes who put in months of hard work.
INTERVIEW WITH ROBERTO EUSEBIO – E.: Which competition do you remember in a particular way in your career?
R.: In my life I saw many competitions, I was thrilled to see bodybuilders compared in detail, to appreciate how hard they had worked to bring out the smallest DETAILS of their bodies, true artists and sculptors of bodies but certainly of deep souls … I don’t remember well the year, but I was invited to the Corpus of Bergamo, where some of the greatest bodybuilders in history participated, such as Bob Paris, Samir Bannout, and Kawak… and others.
The thing that surprised me, besides these perfect statues, was for the umpteenth time, the context in which these samples performed. A SHAME. This made me quickly understand that this discipline was not very appreciated and gratified by the mass, but it was only a niche reserved for true lovers of body building.
But in 1997, if I remember correctly, I was hosted to see a competition in Salsomaggiore, organized by the Olimpia Academy, represented by Dr. Spattini, prof. Di Cristino and prof. Veronese.
The presenter of this race was really a presenter (Valerio Merola), television, the press, and above all the context of that wonderful theater where certainly the spectators could not afford the “luxury of opening a box of tuna to snack on”. I understood that that federation invested more than the others and the consideration of the athletes was that of the protagonists.
On that occasion, Andrea Bertona won, who for a long time was featured on all the covers of magazines in the sector. The importance of choreography and above all what was required in this discipline, intended as functional tests fascinated me, it was for me the perfect athlete who gathered the characteristics of each discipline, strength, elasticity, endurance and mental concentration combined with a physical aspect optimal: Bodyfitness. The following year I took part in it too, I finished third, I was more than satisfied; this race was not easy. The participation by the athletes, year after year, grew, everyone felt the feeling that it was a different race, it was unique. In fact, with the 3rd Accademia Olimpia trophy it became a meeting place for the best height-weight athletes from all over Italy, who were required to perform a functional performance of their physique choreographed by a spectacular routine, a real show. Athletes of the caliber of Antonio Vergiani, Marco Acquistucci, Max Bertolani, Andrea Bertona, Paolo Viola, Andrea Romboni, Vittorio Boscolo, and many others participated in these competitions organized by the Olimpia Academy … The third trophy, as you all know, I also participated ‘me and I won the title of Absolute National Bodyfitness Champion. It was a year of intense preparation, both physically and for athletic performance. But next to me I had a famous choreographer from Padua, professor Ugo Mattia, who made me make the leap in quality.
INTERVIEW WITH ROBERTO EUSEBIO – E.: Do you have any races planned?
R.: After this last competition, I was supposed to participate in the Europeans the following week. The selection in Tuscany. Unfortunately, on the Monday following the competition, which took place on Saturday, my wife and I were grieved: in front of our fitness center, her cousin / sister / best friend was hit by a car and died in my arms…
The following week with some friends I got in the car to go to the selection of Europeans, but at a certain point on the ring road in Milan, I started crying and told my friends… .what am I doing? I did a U-turn and went back …… the most important thing for me was not the race, and they never really were; the most important thing was to cultivate my interior by loving myself and loving others … for the greatest value we have .. “we human beings” .. there is nothing else … and when I say we say it with an integrity of soul formed by the mind and body.
INTERVIEW WITH ROBERTO EUSEBIO – E.: Is there any person who over the years has given you the strength or the incentives to continue your path in Body Building?
R.: Surely since I was 16 I have found strength within me, and this not only in sport, but in life. Each of us has a strength unmatched to that which any other person can give us, we just have to learn to manage it and sport in general is a very effective way to do this.
INTERVIEW WITH ROBERTO EUSEBIO – E.: Do you have an episode that you pleasantly remember in the world of Body Building?
R.: Certainly all my workouts… I think they were the best moments ever. It is clear that when I won the absolute, it was a prize of years and years not of sacrifice, but the result of a strong passion that has accompanied me in life, making me take a path that is wonderful and fascinating for me.
INTERVIEW WITH ROBERTO EUSEBIO – E.: A tender friend? Or that belongs to this world? Describe it
R.: I have many friends, to name a few that everyone can know comes to mind, Massimo Spattini, Antonio Vergiani, Alessandro Galli, Mauro Sarni, Carlo Bianchi, Carlo Folli, Emilio Thei, Carlo Mulatero, Raffaele Morandini, Alessandro Lanzani, Ermes De Grossi, Andrea Romboni, Max Bertolani, Enrico Levantino, Enrico Veronese, Valerio Merola, Kimberly Lions, Daniela Trevisol and many others…how can I describe them all!
It is a world that binds us. It is a passion that is born inside and that proliferates emotions that we should transmit to everyone, because it is the discovery of a priceless treasure that nothing belongs to us only ourselves … From this, love for us and for others starts … and all those who have learned it should become like a sort of Sarcerdoti and teach it to others; loving each other, loving each other, gives us the opportunity to create a society that is certainly better than the one we are currently experiencing.
INTERVIEW WITH ROBERTO EUSEBIO – E.: What do you think of Body Building today and yesterday’s?
R.: I did a show on Hystory Channel and the advent of bodybuilding in the 70s / 80s. A big mistake has been made, that of monopolizing this wonderful discipline of shaping our body to our liking according to our personal thinking.
When a philosophy is monopolized to make money out of it, we often ruin the essence of that philosophy, which was certainly not only reserved for those who used doping substances but who were certainly the figures who represented this discipline.
I believe that for those who are truly passionate, it doesn’t exist today or yesterday. Today or yesterday is only for the market which calls wellness, which calls fitness, which calls bodybuilding or bodybuilding; however, it remains a discipline dedicated to us, to our person. The interpretation we want to give it is personalized for everyone depending on what we really want from it.
INTERVIEW WITH ROBERTO EUSEBIO – E.: The muscle group that you struggled most to bring to current levels (in competition) and with what routine did you train it?
R.: Surely it is the legs… ..I have always slaughtered them to try to develop them as much as possible. Here I made the mistake !! I don’t slaughter them anymore… ..I respect their genetics and get better results. Each of us must learn to respect ourselves, and if Mother Nature has given us a muscle district with little fiber… ..we cannot change it… But certainly improve it !!!
INTERVIEW WITH ROBERTO EUSEBIO – E.: Your best muscle group?
R.: I think it’s the shoulders. Among other things, I believe that a good shoulder determines a good line especially when it comes to the stage; it is clear that I do not underestimate my pectorals or backs .. the important thing is to learn to appreciate and love each muscle area, everything is part of us !!
E.: Your current workout routine?
R.: Unfortunately, currently my training is for the rehabilitation of the brachial biceps tendon which has detached following a motorcycle accident. Successful intervention in an excellent way. The first thing I said to the doctor ..: “Doctor, the length must be identical to the other … doctor … I recommend the symmetry … eh eh eh eh … ..”
E.: Is there anything you regret about the past Body Building?
R.: There was another spirit of sacrifice in training … .. but I believe that the fault lies with us managers, personal trainers, trainers, etc … .. We rightly follow the marketing necessary to bring people closer to this world … but it is right here right now we should make known the true essence of bodybuilding …
E .: What would you recommend to a guy who enters the gym today and wants to practice this sport?
A .: Learn to love yourself… .respect yourself… you are unique… .your person is incomparable… discover it… .. what you have in your possession is a treasure !!
E .: Any regrets?
A .: If you mean regret because I sacrificed my life for the sport… .absolutely not… !! Everything in life and I mean everything that is done out of passion and with love whatever it is … … you don’t have to have regrets … you did it because you wanted to do it … ..
E .: For the Body Building during all these years that have led you to become the champion you are what have you given up?
A .: Nothing !! On the contrary, I have had experiences, which I wish everyone to try, and not only with bodybuilding … but in life !!. Emotions are an integral part of life … choose the emotion that satisfies you the most … your soul will grow and become wiser and stronger !!
E .: In the off season, do you still keep a low bf or do you not worry and only think about the mass?
A .: I believe that there are phases to be respected in life; and in addition to the phases, I am convinced that sometimes we do not have to give up the pleasure of taste … this is also an emotion !! If I have no competitions in sight … let’s say that every now and then good Mediterranean cuisine satisfies my taste, which with training completes my hunger for well-being.
E .: What do you think is the best food and training strategy to define yourself?
A .: Each of us works in a different way… .we have to get to know each other. I have learned that the more I respect my body, the more I get from it … my nutrition starts from the base of dr. Sears …. it is clear that by definition I reduce the intake of carbohydrates … however my diet is mainly linked to a stabilization of blood sugar with the zone diet …. at least as a starting point.
E .: What supplements do you prefer in definition and in bulk?
A .: I am a supporter of supplements. We integrate where with natural food we are unable to … .. fill our needs with macro and micro nutrients; however, I would say that for the unruly social life I carry out, the protein and vitamin-based supplements are the ones I need most.
E .: What has Body Building taught you in life?
A .: Simply put: It made me grow !! And I don’t mean physically!
E .: Your relationship with food? Is it just a means to shape your body or do you like good food?
A .: Eh eh eh, anyone who does not like good food is a hypocrite, he is the one who is self-convinced of this .. I repeat myself but I want to emphasize: there are phases to be respected in life…. If you are close to a competition … it is not a renunciation … because at that moment what satisfies you the most is the physical shape … but in the off season … well if you give up the taste … it’s like giving up going with a beautiful woman … eh eh eh …!
emotions …. emotions …. are part of life !!
E .: A phrase or a word that represents you
A .: SIMPLY, SIMPLE
E .: A thought that often leads you to reflection
A .: The disease of the future…. !!! The Depression !! I am recently conducting studies on this phenomenon that afflicts the majority of the population… even the young…. We need to find a solution to the problem as soon as possible…. sport … an excellent weapon !!!
E .: When you are on vacation, are you able to train and stay on a diet?
A .: I do it only if I have a competition coming up … I’m not sure two weeks that compromise our physical state !!
E .: What are you currently working on?
A .: Sport at the service of science…. As I said … the aesthetic aspect sometimes becomes the care of people who are about to fall into the labyrinth of a depressive state due to the society we are living in, therefore bringing the attention of a subject to love each other …. it means fortifying him and helping him to overcome the abyss of uncertainty that our society offers us today….
First of all believe in us !!
In addition to being the owner of a fitness center and wellness center, I write articles for magazines related to health and wellness, interviews on various broadcasters … In short, today more than ever my desire is to convey to everyone what I have inside me … but above all that we all have inside !!
E .: Your plans for the future?
A .: I smile… but I’m telling the truth!
Change the world !!
The greatest value that exists is that of the human being !! Let’s cultivate it and respect it. The world will change!!
Sport, where training, passion and love for oneself are the initial ingredients for achieving high-level human results; sport where morality is a distinctive feature of man’s approach to himself.
INTERVIEW WITH ROBERTO EUSEBIO