BODYBUILDING BRAZIL: Thanks for the interview, Eduardo. It's an honor to have you at Bodybuilding Brazil. I've been scouring your site and I saw that, since childhood, you were very attached to sports. You even happened to join a professional soccer team at a certain point! Could you go back in time and remember those years?
EDUARDO CORREA: Actually, I didn’t get to be a professional player but I played on some amateur soccer and indoor soccer teams in Southern Brazil. Some players like Marquinhos (now in Santos), Eduardo Costa (former Brazilian National Team) were my partners at that time. I always liked to play soccer, but I was not emotionally prepared for a professional career at that time. For this reason, I admire players so young and with so much personality, like Alexandre Pato (Milan) and even Robinho and Nilmar (Santos).
BODYBUILDING BRAZIL: Then you started going to the gym to develop your body for soccer. "One thing led to another and I started in Bodybuilding," you say. Wait a minute: one thing doesn’t necessarily lead to another for everyone! When did your interest in bodybuilding begin? What motivated you to compete?
EDUARDO CORREA: First, I realized I had a certain potential, a genetic predisposition to compete in such a category – otherwise, I would never have gone any further with that. The search for new phases and developments motivated me to achieve better performances.
BODYBUILDING BRAZIL: How old were you in your first competition?
EDUARDO CORREA: 19 years old.
BODYBUILDING BRAZIL: Did passion come immediately or did you continue with soccer?
EDUARDO CORREA: Immediately, since my first competition. I won the Santa Catarina Overall title in 2001.
BODYBUILDING BRAZIL: We see many athletes who get started on bodybuilding and often drop out early. What made you continue?
EDUARDO CORREA: Perseverance and the will to realize a dream.
BODYBUILDING BRAZIL: When did things stop being fun and began to get serious?
EDUARDO CORREA: When I slowly decided to give up on College of Engineering of Aquaculture School to devote myself to training. This has been happening gradually over the past 5 years.
BODYBUILDING BRAZIL: You have lived for some years in America, training and competing there. What were the biggest differences you noticed between Brazil and America regarding bodybuilding?
EDUARDO CORREA: The professionalism.
BODYBUILDING BRAZIL: Watching your career, we note that things happened relatively quickly in your life. How did you deal with the responsibility of so many major victories?
EDUARDO CORREA: Actually, I'm still learning to deal with all that. Often, backstage during competitions, many athletes approach me and call me by my name. It still makes me feel strange. My biggest worry today is that I know I am an opinionated person and many people look up to me and my attitudes, so it is my duty to act with dignity and pay back the kindness of those who admire my work.
BODYBUILDING BRAZIL: Then, in 2009, you decided to compete professionally. Was it easy to make that decision?
EDUARDO CORREA: I decided to turn professional as soon as the advent of division 202 Pounds. During 2008 I was traveling anonymously and following the major competitions and competitors in that class. I did that until 2009, when I had my debut in Pittsburgh Pro League, promoted by Jim Manion, IFBB Professional League Chairman.
BODYBUILDING BRAZIL: What changed from the moment you started to compete in the PRO division?
EDUARDO CORREA: It changed my way of looking at the competitions. I surrounded myself with good people, and my first decision was to hire a coach, who is the most experienced nutritionists in that area, Chris Aceto (above, with Tarek Elsetouhi and Eduardo). I started thinking more about the length of my career and my health. I tried to surround myself with substantiated information and not just empirical or intuitive ones. And this year, I signed with one of the largest laboratories in Latin America, Probiotica, which has been enabling me to put in practice all of my projects.
BODYBUILDING BRAZIL: The athlete Glayson Souto, in an interview for Bodybuilding Brazil, compared the success to hiking a mountain, that on the second half becomes steeper. Do you agree? Are things harder now? Why?
EDUARDO CORREA: I could compare the success as a roller coaster, with ups and downs, slow climbs and rapid descents. dynamic and capable of changing all the time in a highly competitive market. Things have always been difficult not only for me but for all Brazilians who would like to live as athletes. I could mention some reasons for that: lack of financial resources, lack of professionalism, poor advertising of the sport among others.
BODYBUILDING BRAZIL What can you tell me about your anxiety level on the eve of competitions?
EDUARDO CORREA: It's something that I should be always working on. The bodybuilder must train and prepare to be the best but at the same time deal with a certain degree of comfort and emotional stress. That's the secret.
BODYBUILDING BRAZIL: What about concentration?
EDUARDO CORREA: 110%
BODYBUILDING BRAZIL: It's very different from the amateur days?
EDUARDO CORREA: Considering that I live entirely for competing, yes.
BODYBUILDING BRAZIL: What about the pressure?
EDUARDO CORREA: Certainly, since it is my profession.
BODYBUILDING BRAZIL: What qualities an amateur athlete must have in advance to be prepared for an international career?
EDUARDO CORREA: Learn to speak English. I suffered a lot, and still suffer for being unprepared. We must learn to relate, have a professional conduct, and deal with adversity.
BODYBUILDING BRAZIL: Each and every day, we see your name on international magazines and websites, always praising your work. How do you feel seeing your name all over the world?
EDUARDO CORREA: I see it as a reward for my efforts The warmth of the fans is something that moves me. It is inexplicable, overwhelming and totally inspirational for me.
BODYBUILDING BRAZIL: Describe the thrill of participating in Olympia.
EDUARDO CORREA: For a few moments, I wondered what I was doing there. It took me a while to take in all that was going on around me, but I was very focused all the time, facing Mr. Olympia like just one more contest - not in a bad sense, but as a way of relieving the pressure I was feeling.
BODYBUILDING BRAZIL: Being professional is living 24 hours for the sport. Describe your day-to-day in times of competition.
EDUARDO CORREA: Physical therapy 4 hours a day, 2-hour workout, cardiovascular training 1 hour a day, six meals a day, cooking, relaxing and spending time with my wife and family.
BODYBUILDING BRAZIL: Describe your day on competition day.
EDUARDO CORREA: It’s the most relaxed of the year. I don’t need to do anything, just show what I’ve done up to that point.
BODYBUILDING BRAZIL: When does Eduardo Correa rest? What do you like to do?
EDUARDO CORREA: Going to the movies, restaurants, I love to have dinner with my family, sometimes go to the beach. If I'm with Carol, it doesn’t matter where and what I'm doing, I'm always very happy.
BODYBUILDING BRAZIL: Eduardo, comparing those times of soccer to nowadays. What changed? What have you learned? What does not change?
EDUARDO CORREA: I’m more mature. I know how to deal with the adversities and difficulties imposed on me on a day to day basis. As of my personality, I’m still the same, with my faults and virtues, only seeking to constantly improve, making my qualities to overcome my shortcomings.
BODYBUILDING BRAZIL: Which athletes have inspired you and which ones inspire you today?
EDUARDO CORREA: Each one inspires me in a different way, either coaching, speaking or dressing. Who is not inspired by watching the videos of Branch Warren and Kai Greene, Ronnie Coleman, Dorian Yates, Jay Cutler, Phil Heath, among other bodybuilders?
BODYBUILDING BRAZIL: Do you want to add something?
EDUARDO CORREA: I thank my family and friends, who share with me the pain and joy of victories and achievements; my sponsor, Probiotica; my wife, Caroline; my physical therapists, Wladimir Pereira and Matheus Cardoso, and to God, for giving health to be able to fight for my goals and dreams.