The Mutant must overcome multiple injuries to make his comeback.
Taking third place in the Mr. Olympia 2022, Nick Walker looked bound for a podium finish in the Mr. Olympia in 2023. Unfortunately for the talented bodybuilder, his quest for the Mr. Olympia 2023 came to an early and painful end before the competition even began.
He was forced to withdraw from the biggest competition of the season due to a torn hamstring, Walker recently revealed that he suffered even more damage than he first thought. In a video posted on his Instagram page on November 6, 2023, “The Mutant” gave an update on his injury situation and his mindset as he begins the road to recovery.
After congratulating Derek Lunsford on becoming the 18th Mr. Olympia and the first two-division champion, Walker revealed more details about the state of his health. Walker not only suffered a severe hamstring injury in the previous Olympia, but also injured his calf.
“I think it was Friday, we went and got the MRI and it came back with a partial hamstring tear and grade 1 strain, little tear in my calf as well,” Walker said. “Nothing crazy, nothing major that would require surgery, so that’s great news. I’m very happy, literally very happy about it.”
Fortunately for Walker, a grade 1 strain involves mild damage to individual muscle fibers that usually causes a small loss of strength and movement. On the other hand, a grade 3 strain involves a complete tear of the muscle or tendon and usually requires surgery to reattach the damaged structure. So even though Walker’s Olympia dream turned into a bit of a nightmare, he avoided the worst-case scenario.
The 2021 Arnold Classic winner noted that his doctors were “very impressed” with how quickly his body began the healing process. Despite suffering a major setback at the most inopportune time, Walker displayed maturity and humility when discussing his injury.
“I’m a firm believer that things happen for a reason, and I can’t figure out what that reason is,” Walker explained. “This should have been a really special moment. I just stick to that saying, things happen for a reason, for bigger things to happen, so that’s what we’re going to do.”
[Related: 2023 Amateur Olympia Results]
Even though Walker can’t crush a leg workout anytime soon, he won’t let that stop him from getting ready to compete again in 2024. Focused on upper-body training and testing his limits as he recovers, he’s vowed to return for more strong for next year Olympia.
However, whether Walker will get a chance to compete in the sport’s tentpole competition is far less certain than his belief that he will return. Due to changes in the Olympia Qualifying System, only the top three finishers from the Mr. Olympia automatically qualify for next year’s event.
With Walker having already ruled himself out of the 2024 Arnold Classic, he will need to win an IFBB Pro League show to secure a spot in the Men’s Open lineup for the 2024 Olympia. Then again, perhaps supporters will satisfy the his request to “The Mutant” to receive a special invitation to share the stage with the newly crowned champion and the rest of the Olympia contenders.
Featured Image: nick_walker39 / Instagram