“Felt Like I Was Damaged”: 76-Year-Old Arnold Schwarzenegger Painfully Recalls His First Face-Off With Aging After Being Hailed as Epitome of Human Physique for Years

Seven-time Mr. Olympia Arnold Schwarzenegger is a beacon when it comes to bodybuilding and fitness. Despite being at the tough age of 76, Schwarzenegger makes sure to train regularly and maintain a strict diet to ensure good health. However, things were not always so smooth for ‘The Austrian Oak.’ While it is true that ‘age is just a number,’ there is no denying that the human body becomes weaker and more fragile as one ages.

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This process can be a bit challenging and overwhelming initially, as it was for Arnold, too. During a recent podcast that Schwarzenegger was a part of, he revealed his initial response to his aging body after he went through two open heart surgeries within a span of 48 hours. Let’s take a look at Arnold’s story as he talks about it in an online interview with renowned YouTuber and entrepreneur Tim Ferriss.

Arnold Schwarzenegger opens up about his heart surgery


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While most individuals might assume that heart problems might be a result of steroid and PED usage, so is the case with most bodybuilding athletes, but this is not true in the case of Arnold Schwarzenegger. He was born with a heart defect called aortic stenosis, which causes the heart to pump harder than usual to get blood through the aortic valve. When asked about his experience with aging, Schwarzenegger revealed that it was after his surgery that he realized the impact of aging.

“It was the first time where I woke up after two heart surgeries…and after that, I felt like I was damaged goods. I didn’t feel anymore like invincible, and I didn’t feel like I can handle anything,” Schwarzenegger disclosed. Continuing further, he also stated that there were a lot of restrictions put on him all of a sudden because of the surgery.

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Schwarzenegger continued further by disclosing the things and activities he was denied doing after the surgery. Let’s take a look.

Watch This Story: From Ronnie Coleman to Jay Cutler: Bodybuilding Legends Show Up at Arnold Classic 2022 in Absence of Arnold Schwarzenegger

Schwarzenegger is not the one to give up easily!


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Schwarzenegger further mentioned, “All of a sudden, there were limits put on me where the doctor said don’t train this heavy.” Explaining the logic behind this, he pointed out that the doctors told him that the valves have to be replaced every 10–15 years. However, “the more you put pressure on it, the faster we will have to,” doctors said.

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He revealed in his book ‘Total Recall: My Unbelievably True Life Story,’ that he was only given a sixty percent chance of a successful surgery as he opted for a complex surgery, which would be a bit more complicated but would mean that he could continue doing stunts in movies as well as lift weights.


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Arnold, being Arnold, went for the surgery anyway as he wanted to lift iron as well as live a full life ahead. ” Big risk, big reward. That made sense to me. “It’s fine,” I said. “I’ll take the risk,” Schwarzenegger revealed in the book. While aging surely took a toll on Arnold, he did not let it get the better of him. The bodybuilding champion continues to live a healthy life and probably maintains a healthier lifestyle than most of us.

Read More: “Completely Avoided It My Whole Life”: As a Controversial Statement From Pumping Iron Still Haunts Arnold Schwarzenegger, He Made an Unexpected Confession Earlier This Year

Author: ZeroToHero

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