Hailing from Wales, James “Flex” Lewis developed an interest in
bodybuilding at the age of 12 after coming across a book about
champion bodybuilder Tom Platz. Inspired, he began training at home
with a simple pair of weights. As a teenager, he graduated to a gym
setting as part of his rugby training.
In fact, it was the rugby pitch, not the bodybuilding stage, where
“Flex” earned his nickname for his ability to slip would-be tacklers.
Lewis soon crossed paths with a local bodybuilder who recognized his
potential and offered to help him train. A year later, Lewis took the
first place trophy at the 2003 EFBB Jr. Mr. Wales competition.
Over the next four years, Lewis dominated the U.K. amateur
bodybuilding scene, eventually reaching professional status with a win
at the 2007 British Nationals. Between 2008 and 2011, he established
himself as a force in international competition with wins across the
United States and Europe.
One year later, Lewis took first place honors in the newly created
Olympia 212 lbs. Division, a title he would hold through 2018. During
this period, he also scored first-place finishes across a range of 212
lbs. competitions, including the prestigious IFBB Arnold Classic – an
event named for his childhood hero, Arnold Schwarzenegger.
Today, the 212 division’s G.O.A.T. has his sights set on winning the
Mr. Olympia Open competition, where there is no maximum weight for