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So being yanked out of the sport at the top of your game that’s rough and It was just it was really a spiral down. I mean When I found out I had the disease in 99 it was so rare at that time they they ran tests for another year before they even confronted me and told me about it because they just wanted to be I guess sure because it was so rare at the time and I Remember, you know Being how I am. I just licked him. If I go did I do this? Did I do this to myself based on what I use what I’ve done, you know If I if I pissed in a bit, then I gotta sleep in it Did I did I do this and I’m like no I never said no, how do you know that? you know, how do you know and I remember him saying, you know There’s a famous basketball player that has the same disease and we know he didn’t do what you do And they wouldn’t tell me his name then but now I know what it is. It’s Lonzo morning Yeah, I was like, huh? I said, okay and then later on I started meeting families you had kids that Obviously didn’t do what I did So, you know, I I went into the hospital Well, I finally had disease and you know That was rough because all my contracts left they ran like the Black Plague you imagine your pain and athletes to look a certain way and There was a dark side to what they have to do. And now you have kidney failure, please Try to convince me. It’s not a correlation to what you’re doing. You’re lying. Of course it is No, it’s a rare kidney disease and you know, so it’s it’s FSGS Foucault’s glamorous girl neurosis. Sure sure. It is son So they all ran like the plague. So I just lost everything my mansion, my cars and I Was trying to explain it, you know to somebody at a time, you know So I I was fortunate I had a really really really really really really really really big house That people would come to and get lost. You know, if they went the wrong direction and I Was forced from that to have to go and stand with my mother-in-law in a Three-bedroom house that had one bathroom and it was me and my my my ex-wife now Me her and our two kids living in a room in a single bed all three of us laying in it and her sister and her Husband and their kids living in the other room and our mother live in another room So coming from that into there not to mention I had my dialysis machine that I was to Alice sighs a myself enosis. It was health like wow This is my life now, and I remember trying to explain to them because they’d be like why you depress on my Guess yeah, but you’re here flex I couldn’t get that. I might look at everything. I lost. I’m like, why would that matter? I’m like Okay, so if you’re if you’re this height and you fall it hurts a certain amount But if you’re away a pair and you fall is greater anybody know so I’m like, of course it is You’re just saying it because you weren’t up there. So anyway Fast forward I I get it You know a transplant Soon because I was I was going to get into dialysis every other day for three hours and at the at the time I was still around 260 pounds, so I was too heavy and The kidney disease was getting more aggressive So it got to the point where? They wanted me to start coming in every day for 12 hours and I just told them I said go F yourself I rather die you guys notice? you’re going to if you don’t and we’re not sure if you’re gonna make it even if you do, I’m like I Don’t have a life if I come in here and do that I might I just rather just I you know I just that’s not wise to live so I wasn’t thinking about my kids or anything at the time it’s just I was just the darkness I was in and So fortunate I got a kidney transplant and I thought that was great but The girl who was my donor it was a female She was very petite and while that I guess they had us out on a table They discovered that the main artery to her kidney was short because she’s tiny and I’m big so they were gonna put the kidney back in her and just stitched me back up and I guess one of the surgeons You know had a great idea We’re going to my main artery here and take it out and extend it and make you know the surgery work well in the process of doing that because I was Not not only what you know when I didn’t 260 pounds, but it’s just probably at that time maybe four percent So just muscular, you know, they they use these huge Clamps open everything up just like I guess a c-section so in doing so it kills the main artery here because I was clamped and it was You know pinched down for so long so they got that to work but I ended up having you know, a long story short nine surgeries in 11 weeks that I almost died from and I was just Son of us this blood-curdling pain I ever experienced at that time. I was literally on oxycodone Oxycodone which is once a injectable and whens a pill I was on a Demerol pump and I had an epidural, you know That was contacted to my spine. I was just just Hallucinating I was in la-la land literally I mean
they they took me from my hospital bed and put me into a mental institution on the other part of the hospital because I was just gone and Here we can back glass to what I was talking about drugs. So instead of helping me All they did was put me on more drugs. So we all know that when you’re on tremendous amount of painkillers what happens depression? Oh now we need to put your anti depression. Oh, that’s not working let’s switch you to this and that spiraled I end up having a bad effect from that and just losing it just were You know Weeks would go by and to me they’re just seconds and I would just hallucinate I remember talking to my friends and you know What do you think of my dog and I only know these things because he told me later and I’m asking him What do you think of my dog and he’s like what dog flex he goes my dog, and I’m pointing at my foot You know Even something more embarrassing. My niece was visiting me and I’m asking Oh underwear you got on And she didn’t tell me till years later not in when she told me I was sobbing that’s my niece She goes uncle Kenny. I knew that wasn’t you it I didn’t bother me and another time I I was so hungry cuz he starting because I have an all these tests on right and I Was starving plus I’m coming off eating eight thousand calories a day To be to sit down. So I’m dying. I’m angry. Imagine when you’re hungry I’m angry and I’m hallucinating and I’m I’m opening the cabinets and I’m getting everything I’m making a peanut butter and jelly sounds and I put it on and only when I bite though I realize it ain’t nothing air which just sends me in a more anger and in rage so they put me into a mental institution and you know through arguments with them and just Some of the things I saying in air which is people who have mental problems a normal person just don’t supposed to see that and don’t even pose to see how they respond to those people and I was arguing with him and We discovered that Two of the medications had an adverse effect that it said right on the label do not switch these two or mingle these two together or else it causes this and It goes no We don’t think your honor goes right there read it and as doctors some are no you’re wrong and they came back We think you’re onto something. I like I want out of here. No, no. Yeah, you have to stay I’m gonna know I went out of here it goes well Listen, you know you were suicidal before so, you know, you need help. I’m like no I beat that This is you guys fall You know, we’ll just stay one more day and let’s make sure so the next day I even got better so I did just put me back in the other side of the hospital so that was really hard and I Can’t really explain it, but I remember my room was really dark and and To me. I thought it was a nurse because nurse would come in and draw him blood at all times an hour and Still I wonder but this nurse came in and she just sat on my bed and she goes What are you upset about? You know what you feeling bad about yourself? Why are you pitying? You know, I’m like you mean look at me she and I Look at me she goes, but look at everything you’ve done you traveled a world you made money You won shows look at everything great you down I go, but I ain’t nothing now look at me You need to stop feeling sorry for yourself. What about your kids? What about your family? You think of them? Nah, Mike And I just remember waking up and I was just my My beginning to stop the flight and start a fight And when I got at a hospital, I I have to I had to go to see the doctors every three months you know was really critical and I Remember them because I’m Dyslexic. I’m very good with remembering words and what you say in and in how to Put that back to you If you say something I’m gonna lock in on your words and I’m gonna use them because that’s your language I know you all understand it that way and I remember the doctor say they’re like They’re Katyn said the way they were talk to me was always the same and always the same in and do you feel this does this happen they said now and then finally like after I Think my third visit so that’s three six nine months I’m like, why do you keep asking me these questions why you keep doing that? Well, we just need to know Why do you why do you keep doing that? It doesn’t matter. I’m like it does matter. Why why you keep asking me that? Well, it’s just a chance that you know, you might have a relapse. I’m like, what do you mean by that? It doesn’t matter. We don’t we need to talk about. Yeah, we do. This is my life. Why are you doing that? Well flex, the disease doesn’t go away. I’m like, what do you mean? I had a kidney transplant He goes, this is not like a heart transplant. Well, you get a new heart and you’re fine. He goes The disease ravished your kidney. It’s not in your kidney. It’s still in you. Okay, so, what are you saying? And you know he cut the conversation off and I got angry and I got a hostile I’m like no, you’re gonna effin tell me this is my life. He goes well You know, you’ll have to have another transplant like Oh, what do you mean by that he goes? Your disease will reverse this kidney I go so you’re saying I gotta go through this all over again Yeah, but don’t worry about it. You know you you’ve been through it your kidney transplant patient. You’ll be fine I go. No, no, like oh That’s like telling a woman, you know, you’re gonna give birth again, even though you almost died nine times Giving birth to your last host. You’ll probably are I’m good. I’m not gonna have any more kids So you tell me I gonna have to go he goes, we don’t know that that’s not gonna happen I go but I do know that it’s possible because I went through it and I went home and I was just in a state of depressive like man. I thought I was done you tell me I Think I laid in bed for maybe three days Allowing Kenny to just beat my ass, you know, like the old days you get it. Yeah, and I Just I got tired and angry just with just a pity crap. I said, you know what? I’m okay. If this is gonna happen, it’s gonna have to come and get me I’m gonna get up I’m gonna go live my life. I’m gonna get back in shape When it knocks on a door, I’m not answer and I’m out somewhere. It’s gonna have to come and find me I’m not gonna just sit here and let this just come and just happen like hey, how you doing? Come on in my cuz I’m a fight


  1. This is eye-opening really. I always thought it was related to his creatine and other chem use. I'm actually oddly relieved that it was NOT related to his bodybuilding. They can print 3d functional kidneys and livers today. All hope is not lost, Flex. I promise.

  2. Glad to see he is doing well, but steroids and other muscle related drugs such as synthol, dieuretics, HCG, and HGH are the main cause. Where are all the commercials and ads to show the great effects of using supplements and having great "genetics."

  3. This is why I always recommend people get disability insurance. Had he gotten that he would have had at least some loot coming in after he was sick.

  4. Many people confirn even Felx himself that many times he was working out in clothes for night out after training he get drugs and have a party. Plus gear and disaster happens. Not trying to be a hater but recreational drugs plus steroids gh and insulin its not best scenario.

  5. Transplants are a fortune in U.S, not all insurance covers it and even if so the insurance is costly beyond many people's income level. In Sweden it's tax funded. Damn our commie socialism for enabling poor people to get transplants and survive!

  6. When you're down, a bitch leaves you and only your mother is there.
    This generation is all about money.

  7. Kidney issues is a big and growing problem with folks of color . Salt is 1 of the many things we need to cut out despite what what food industry says . I hear even folks i admire like Rogan pusing more Salt . but just like sunscreen its Not for everyone. Dark skin folks in the US usually need More Sun . Not Less, and Less Salt for our kidneys

  8. He described it so well it was like watching it happening. Good thing he is sharing it to educate the population because steroids, especially in large dosage do have side effects.

  9. God is real when you cours God that's what happens you could go hi some day you come to be in the floor ur die but if you come to to God hi will put you even bigger My Help Comes from the Lord bigger than Godbless seek the Lord his coming SOON+

  10. The drugs caused his problems. He can sugar coat it here all he wants, but I'm not buying it. He's lucky he didn't have a massive heart attack and die from the amounts he was taking, and he obviously used a lot. He was a great bodybuilder, no doubt, but come on take some responsibility. You can't abuse drugs like that for years and not expect consequences from doing that. The "genetic, it was going to happen eventually" phrase is to down play it.

  11. I never knew flex went through all this?! Where was the bodybuilding family when he needed them after all he'd done? Shocked!

  12. Another idiotic video – Why do you have to talk or explain your own decisions about what you did instead of talking about the main subject – Flex Wheeler. Talk about Flex's motivations, his methods and what he achieved not the bullshit that you were dealing with when you gave your "opinion" on his shape. You sure know how to shit on a great subject.

  13. I'm no doctor but taking shit load of steroids and eating 300-500 grams of protein a day must be hard on the organs even for a healthy person.

  14. Saw him guest pose years ago in CT. Mike Katz was the promoter. Flex came out onstage in an Indian costume that only exposed his arms. He hit a few poses, then walked offstage. Mike Katz gets on the mic and starts yelling “Come back out Flex, let’s go. C’mon Flex.” Mike was clearly upset.

  15. I met Flex Wheeler at the 1994 Mr. Olympia. He was recovering from a car wreck, but he was still displaying a super human body at that time. I held a nice conversation with him, and he took a picture with me and another friend. He was very nice.

  16. WOW! You just never know. You go from bodybuilding god to living in your moms home and ill. It is a lesson to all to enjoy the time you have and always be thankful.

  17. IMHO – the bodybuilder from the 90s who looked after himself, invested his money wisely and now is doing well is: Dorian Yates, – not hating but don't be big headed, be humble and appreciate people around you. You don't take anything with you…

  18. Respect to London Real & Flex. That damn wife pissed me the fuck off. Just wrong smh I wouldn't ever take her ass back. It makes you deeply like this man damn near died. You're there for the material gratification??? God is going to whip her ass like he did Satan. That's messed up. He a winner by default. American Doctors are liars and ultimately greedy damn. Smh make me trust women less that's fucking tough.

  19. What these guys do to their bodies to win a competition just isnt worth it. So un natural what they do to their bodies

  20. Life is tough but we all gotta be tougher, fight till you dont breathe anymore only death can stop us ??

  21. This guy was always a total deushbag….(NOTHING off roids…)…What up with the faggy Michael Jackson voice?(make he sound edumikated?)… What's this dummy's motive for whining here….
    A GoFundMe (like Robby)? This deushbag scumbag was threatening to attack Dave Palumbo at an expo 2 years ago during his inane "comeback" because Dave reported on his channel that some people thought his arms looked strange and had synthol in them….

  22. All these guys have to tell only sad stories. Steroids don't change life….it is only an addiction that hides problems…..most of them die most not but look at that stories came from……

  23. Wow i never knew he went through this im on dialysis now waiting to get on the transplant list!! Great video flex

  24. I met this man in St. Peter’s mo. He came there for a seminar. He was such a down to earth guy. God bless Flex. You the man. ??

  25. Great Great Great Story!!…Mr.Wheeler..Black People are Notorious for having bad kidneys&hearts and Doctors know this but they didnt tell Uncle Flex that at that time..Flex is a smart dude so im sure he's figured that out by now…

  26. The guy has been through hell and back he is truly a warrior on and off the stage , hope he pulls through with his leg situation as well , prayers for flex wheeler and his family.

  27. Media no offense not just military get "real depression" and PTSD..so if you don't have it sorry you cant understand it.its not just the "blues"

  28. It all comes down to priorities and im happy to hear that Flex realizes that. He lost material things, which in turn can be gotten again, he didn't lose his life.. He has much to be thankful for!. Even with the loss of his leg, he still can be an inspiration to others. May God bless you Flex!

  29. very Powerful interview, I have a lot more respect for flex. I been through a bit of what flex went through so I feel for him. we all know just now about him losing a part of his leg. everyone send your prayers and positive vibes.

  30. Flex lost everything and l have just seen a news report and he has just lost his leg he was having vascular problem and had to have part of his leg amputated

  31. Wow. That's some story. Flex is a bodybuilding legend but more of a legend now for giving this frank and extraordinary interview.

  32. Sad to hear that you had to go through such tough time. You are a fighter and you will always be one of the best to be in the sport & ruling it. Keep fighting champ. Always proud of you

  33. If your considering taking steroids, hope this wakes you up. Not worth it. Eat lots of peanut butter and eggs instead and turn fat into muscle. While all these guys shrink to nothing and die young you can smile and know you were smart…

  34. Oh Boo hoo Flex many many people go through much tougher times, Like the death of a child or cancer etc. Stop feeling sorry for yourself.

  35. When you think you have already lost everything theres always more you can lose. Still no details about how he lost his leg…..

  36. Flex Wheeler is a survivor in the truest sense of the word.
    Much RESPECT to this man for being able to reform his perceptions on life and to be able to face his shortcomings like a MAN And to become a BETTER man.
    This should put into perspective the narrative that flex was lazy.
    When a man suffers from of all things kidney disease, it is a VERY painful condition and one that can leave a person feeling debilitated on a given day. The fact that he was able to compete at such a high level all those years with the physical issues he suffered is a testimony to his drive and determination to succeed.
    That to the side I have no respect for the individuals coming on here STILL talking negative on the man as if he still has to pay for some imaginary personal offense.

  37. very deep interview… that should be a wake-up call for a lot of us!… Thank God for what we have and take care of it …

  38. My biggest respect to this human being that just poured his heart out. Why isn't this interview plastered all over the internet??? Very brave and courageous to simply tell his personal and intimate details of his downfall; it takes a real MAN to do what you did, Mr. Wheeler. May God give you hope, faith, and love in unlimited amounts! I perfectly understand what you're feeling and although people say that most of the losses are material and don't matter, they have never been in your shoes to understand the pain. God bless.

  39. Flex I hope you see this. if ANYONE needs to write a book on bodybuilding it's you! No holds barred, all truth, the ups and the downs, the drugs, the synthol, the works, THE TRUTH! I swear do it and you'll have a best seller ..tell us about the damned implants, we don't care if you did it. You'll always be the incredible Flex Wheeler. Finance the rest of your life and leave a legacy of the human spirit, the ambition, the adversity, and the psychology. This is an opportunity that needs YOU!


  41. My uncle smoked 150 cigarettes a day and got lung cancer. It wasn't the cigarettes, though, he knew of a non-smoker who had it.

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