One on One with Zane Watson
Q. Zane, after you earned your IFBB pro card in 2013 at the Canadian Bodybuilding Championships, we didn’t see you compete for an entire year. Why did you decide to take this time off?
A. I took some time off because I had just had a child and wanted to focus on my family life for a while. I didn’t actually take that much time off, though; I competed in the 2014 Toronto Pro SuperShow, where I placed 13th. I never publicly announced it because I wasn’t happy with my placing. I barely made the posing round—in fact, I was the last competitor to qualify. A funny story from that show was when Bob Cicherillo asked the fans who they wanted to win, a massive roar and chant of “Watson … Watson … Watson” came from the crowd. I remember Bob looking over at me and smiling. It will be a moment that I’ll never forget.
After that show I realized that I had a lot of work to do. I put my head to the grindstone and started a proper off-season, which kept me lean and in shape. I found that by staying in shape, it was easier for me to get into contest shape and not have to fluctuate much with my diet and training.
Q. With top 212 Olympia competitors Jose Raymond and Guy Cisternino winning this show in previous years, did you have an idea that you would finish in the top spot? How did it feel to win and take first place on home soil?
A. I never really know how I’m going to finish. I just bust my ass in the gym and try to come in with the best conditioning. My mentality is that all the guys that I’m sharing the IFBB stage with will be coming in the best shape they possibly can, so I need to be better in every aspect then they are. This mentality paid off in 2015.
The feeling I felt winning the 2015 Toronto Pro SuperShow was surreal. Having my family and friends watching me compete in the show was probably the best memory; winning the show was just icing on the cake. I never really get to see my family and friends because I’m always training and focusing on my next show. This experience was unreal because I had all of my family and friends in one place.
Q. I remember sitting in the lobby of the convention centre and hearing a massive chant coming from below. I heard “Watson … Watson … Watson” coming up the elevators, with all your family and friends chanting your name. It seems like you have a lot of support from your family and friends. Is this true?
A. Yes, Dave, you’re very right. My family is my biggest support and motivation that I have. I remember being in the middle of that chant, and I honestly felt on top of the world. It’s something I will never forget. As I said before, I never get to see my family all in one place, so having them all there supporting me was the best feeling.
Q. We’ve heard rumours that you won’t be competing in the 2015 Olympia. Is this true? Do you want to share any details of what this buzz started in the first place in order to put an end to the gossip for good?
A. The statement above that I will not be competing in the 2015 Mr. Olympia is false. I have signed my contract, and I’m going to bring my best package yet to the Olympia stage.
The other issues that have been brought up over the past few months aren’t 100 percent false. People make mistakes. However, what the papers and press have said about me was not true. I was not involved, but because I was friends with certain people, and people knew that I associated with these individuals, I became automatically brought in on this problem.
This entire issue really opened my eyes on who you should associate with, and what group you put your name to. It’s really unfortunate that this happened because I’ve been friends with the group for a long time.
Q. Let’s talk more about the Olympia. How has your prep been so far? You’ve been keeping pretty quiet. The fans are dying to know if a Canadian can take the 212 Mr. Olympia title!
A. My Olympia prep couldn’t be going any more smoothly than it is. I’m in a very good place right now. The diet and training hasn’t changed since the Toronto Pro, but I plan on coming in 2 or 3 pounds heavier with 2 or 3 percent less body fat. I normally keep quiet in my prep; it’s just who I am as an individual. I don’t like to be all flashy and brag that I am going to win the O. I’m just working 110 percent every day.
Ha, ha, ha! Tell the fans that they’ll see the best Zane Watson onstage that they’ve ever seen! If I bring my best package and some of the top 212 pros don’t, then who knows what could happen. I can only control my outcome, so I’m just worrying about myself and trying to be better than at the Toronto Pro. If it pays off and I place top five, then, well … I guess we will be doing another interview!
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