Resisting the urge to paraphrase one of the most recognisable action movie stars and Governors of California, Arnold Schwarzenegger is back in Melbourne for the Arnold Classic Australia Multi-Sport Festival.
The whole shebang is being held at the Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre from 17-19 March, and was kicked off at the Crown Entertainment Complex near the Yarra River where Arnie met with the press, alongside Arnold Classic organiser, Tony Doherty. The two men have worked together to make Arnold Classic a world event. “He’s a ripper bloke,” Tony said before Arnie made his appearance. “He’s my idol.”
Talk didn’t steer too far away from the big guy’s career outside of his philanthropy, and that’s fair enough; Arnie and Tony are on a crusade; to thrash obesity and get people to understand that anyone can get fit!
“We’ve got an obesity epidemic,” Tony said. “With kids getting fatter and less active; playing on their iPhones and PlayStations.”
“It is all about reaching out,” the 69-year-old Schwarzenegger continued, “and saying to people, it’s not just about sport. There’s also the recreational side of sport. And that is the most important part. You want [ordinary people] to come in and feel comfortable to go to gym. Just go and do it! You’ll start to feel good as you get fit.”
Those attending the expo this weekend are in for a good chance of seeing the seven times Olympia and five times Mr Universe who will also be taking part in the events. Things kick off with the Arnold Classic Business Forum on Friday, where Arnie will chat with Richard Wilkins about ‘the issues that matter to him.’
Saturday 18th, whilst mere mortals will be nursing St Patrick’s Day hangovers, Schwarzenegger will be walking amongst the expo attendees in a ‘security bubble’, presumably like a muscled-up Pope, and in the evening he’ll be handing out awards to the world’s best male and female bodybuilders at the Arnold Pro Strongman Awards.
The weekend wraps up with a 4km Family Walk on Sunday morning starting at Federation Square and onwards to the Melbourne Convention Centre, where Arnie will be walking alongside the Mayor of Melbourne. Proceeds from the walk go to the Bully Zero Australian Foundation.
All in all, it looks like the people of Melbourne have no excuse not to get active. As the man himself said today, “Just go and do it!”
For more information about the event, go to: www.arnoldclassic.com.au.