Vince McMahon talks "Decimating" Mark Henry in the gym, advice for younger talents, working matches
As noted earlier, WWE Chairman & CEO Vince McMahon is on the cover of the March issue of Muscle & Fitness magazine. The issue contains an interview with McMahon, below are some more highlights courtesy of WrestlingINC.com reader "The Brass Ring":
We interviewed Henry in a previous issue, and he mentioned that you gave him a pretty good beating.
"[Laughs] First of all, when you're my age, you need to have a few tricks up your sleeve. I showed up, and Mark was full of adrenaline, ready to train, and couldn't wait. I went to my locker room and stayed there. I read, did some business, and an hour later I came out. By the time I came out, Mark's energy and enthusiasm had waned considerably. From a psychological standpoint, I tried to gain an advantage there and did.
"And Mark is a strongman type of lifter- one and done, or two reps. I was very deferential to Mark in the first giant set we went through. But in the second one he was green around the gills. That's when I started saying, 'the World's Strongest Man is not doing too well at the moment.' By the end of the workout, I was all over him. 'Come on, Mark! I'm 60-something years old, and you're the World's Strongest Man!' Psychologically, I pretty much decimated him on that last giant set. I almost felt sorry for him, but he challenged me. That was a fun day for me."
You've always been a very physical guy, but people were surprised that you decided to take part in grueling WWE matches for the first time when you were in your 50s. Had you been practicing falls for years, or did you have to be a WWE athlete almost overnight?
"I always wanted to be an in-ring performer, and my dad, who preceded me, wouldn't allow me to because he felt you couldn't be an objective businessman and a performer at the same time. It was something I wanted to do, and the opportunity just presented itself. Quite frankly, I had not trained in the fundamentals. I knew how to do it; I'd just never done it. All of a sudden I was an in-ring performer and a producer and director. It was difficult to do it all, so my dad was right. But it was so much fun.
"I did what we call 'working close' - I connected every shot with my adversary in the ring so as not to make him look bad. And likewise I knew I couldn't sell what they were doing to me unless I could feel it, so I asked them to lay it in, too."
What is your advice to aspiring Superstars?
"Reach for the brass ring. Don't be happy with just making the team. It's important to not be concerned with failure and not be afraid of making a fool out of yourself. You know, when I was my character, I did all kinds of things that to the normal person would be humiliating. But it was a character, and I think you can't be afraid of failing in front of a live audience. You need to learn from it and accept it. Don't be afraid to try new things."
McMahon also discussed if he is worried for his safety while wrestling, inspiration for the McMahon character, if he was concerned about making others look small, his fitness and nutrition regime, what the WWE corporate gym's like and more.
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