When Patrick Tuor was a young man, he didn't know where he would end up as an adult. He was passionate about basketball and wanted to become a professional in the sport. However, his attempt to play in Italy was unsuccessful and as he told Dennis James on The Menace Podcast, he didn't think it was worth playing in his native Switzerland.
"I had no intention of going back and playing in Switzerland," said Tuor. "And there was no money in it."
He discovered lifting weights while playing ball and eventually switched to bodybuilding. By 1999, he had turned pro and was ready to make his pro debut. The competition he competed in was the 2000 World Pro Championships in San Marino, Italy, which included James, Ronnie Coleman, Gunter Schlierkamp and Jay Cutler among others. He said this competition is a wake-up call to what it takes to succeed as a professional.
"I really got a slap in the face," he said jokingly. Tuor would finish 12th out of 13 men in this competition. "I looked at you from behind. I had the best seat in the house.”
Patrick Tuor competed as an IFBB pro until 2003, but he knew what he wanted to do in the future - coaching others to excel. When James asked about working with athletes, Tuor said that amateurs are their best clients.
"I think it's obviously easier to work with amateurs and they're eager to learn," he explained. "I think it's more fun in a way because you're a more important reason why they're successful or should be successful."
Tuor is also well known and respected in the pro ranks. He has worked with many athletes in his career. One of his most famous clients is Iain Valliere, who was considered the rising star of the sport. James asked what Tuor does when it comes to working with a pro of this caliber. Aside from learning how the competitor got to where they are at this point, Tuor tries to find ways to improve beyond that.
"You try to go with what you have in front of you and make small changes," he shared. Working with Valliere, Tuor focused on bringing out body parts that both the athlete and the coach were missing.
“I think that from the beginning that was our strategy of emphasizing certain body parts and prioritizing them in training. The second work was that we need to get bigger. He was traditionally someone who was easy to shape up, but to be one of the top contenders (Valliere) was a bit lacking in that size.
How did the duo do it? In short, it turns out that eating big and training hard were key to the Canadian's success.
"And that's what we've been working on over the off-season, trying to keep adding more food, making sure he's getting stronger and making sure he's getting bigger overall, not just, you know, and focusing on weaker parts of the body."
The strategy and work paid off for Valliere. He won two pro shows in 2021, finished runner-up at the 2021 Arnold Classic and placed 7th at the 2021 Olympia. He is now one of the elite in the IFBB Pro League and is automatically ranked at all shows he attends title contender viewed.
As for Patrick Tuor, he and James talk about his fluency in four languages, his journey to becoming an IFBB pro after winning multiple amateur shows, and more.
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