Kamal Elgargni shares his causes for attending the Tampa Professional Open

The Tampa Pro 2022 is scheduled to take place in Tampa on August 6th. The competition has been highly anticipated as it is a highlight of the IFBB Pro League schedule. That anticipation turned to full excitement after 2019 Olympia 212 champion Kamal Elgargni announced he would be making his men's Open debut by competing in Tampa. Even at the age of 51, Elgargni says he sees progress in the development of his body. So now it's time to test the open house waters.

"I feel great and I see my body has improved. I see this as a way to show the bodybuilding world that if you play smart, age is just a number," Elgargni said. "If you get crazy about anything, you'll finish early. If you're smart, you can go on forever.”

Part of being smart for Elgargni is not doing anything crazy just because it's an open show. While he doesn't have a weight limit for this competition, the scale isn't very important to him at this point.

"I'm not trying to play the size game. I'll only care about how I look on the day of the show," he explained. "I'm just trying to bring the best possible package that I can bring." As for the location of the competition for this debut, the rationale for the Libyan man was pretty straightforward.

"I moved to Tampa. I consider myself a boy from Tampa. Why not?

Kamal Elgargni will also compete at Texas Pro 2022, which will be held a week after Tamps. Should he win one or both of these competitions, he will qualify as an open competitor for the 2022 Mr. Olympia competition. Thanks to his Olympia 212 victory three years ago, he is already Olympic-qualified for life in this division. His potential win could add his name to a list of athletes qualified for both the 212 and the Open. The other two are Shaun Clarida and Angel Calderon. While qualifying for the Open would be nice, Elgargni has a mission on mind as he travels to Nevada this December.

Chris Nicols

“When I won the Olympia 212, it was in Vegas. Then it moved to Orlando for two years. w it's back to Vegas. I'm going back to Vegas and I want my title back," he said emphatically. He would become the first man in Olympia 212 history to reclaim the title after losing it on stage. If he won in Tampa, he would become the second Olympic champion to win the Tampa Pro Open contest alongside Dexter Jackson. His legacy in the sport is already there, but his old-school mentality drives him to achieve even more.

“I know exactly what I'm looking for in sport, in business. I know exactly what to do and how to do it to get the results I want," he explained. Knowing what to do also requires consulting with his trainer, Chris Aceto, who also has an old-school mentality and a wealth of experience helping bodybuilding legends prepare for major competitions.

"He's a lot more experienced than me as he's been in the field a lot longer than I have."

The BPI athlete is grateful for all of the blessings in his life, and it's because he understands the prestige that comes with competing in the IFBB Pro League. Under a previous government he was not allowed to compete at all. After the organizations split in 2017, Jim Manion immediately offered Elgargni the opportunity he wanted and deserved.

"The other people didn't give me a pro card for almost four years, even though I won it," he explained. "Mr. Manion was always there to support me, he always believed in me and after the breakup he said, 'Kamal, you're an IFBB pro now.'

Kamal Elgargni 212 Bodybuilding Olympia 2020Chris Nicols

Even with his tremendous success in international bodybuilding and his success as a former Olympic champion, his popularity has perhaps never been higher. Part of that is due to his recent training collaboration with 2021 Arnold Classic champion Nick Walker. Some of her workouts have been filmed and posted on YouTube, and they've been met with great reviews. Kamal Elgargni explained that he and Walker trained differently before joining forces, but the young New Jersey prodigy is following in the legend's footsteps.

"I had him work out in one of my sessions, old-school, high-volume style of work-out, and he loved it," he recalled. “Some people I trained with said no and quit. He hasn't quit, he's doing the training and he's smart."

Both men see themselves as winners at the Olympics in Las Vegas. Kamal Elgargni expressed that Walker has all the tools to possibly become an all-time great.

"I saw his personality and we've trained together since he moved to Tampa. I love this kid," he said proudly. "He's humble, he's got a fire in him and he knows exactly what he wants to do. He reminds me a lot of myself when I started bodybuilding. He wants to win five Mr. Olympia and five Arnold Classics. He has already set his goals.”

Elgargni's career has been one that many fans have admired over the years, and it's also one they try to emulate for themselves. He pointed out that being surrounded by the right people is a very important factor. So he surrounds himself with his family, people like Walker, Aceto, the people at BPI and others in his inner circle.

“People who are positive are crucial. Our sport is not like other sports. It takes a lot and we have to give a lot,” he suggested. "If you believe in yourself, have the tools and the commitment to become a world champion, don't look to others who doubt you. Surround yourself with the right trainer, the right training partners and don't rush things. If you have everything I said, you will achieve your goals.”

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