“My name is Jari Mentula. I am a 42-year-old IFBB professional bodybuilder. I was born in a small town in southern Finland in 1976. I have always been fond of sports and when I was younger I played soccer and naturally ice hockey. For many years these were my main sports. When I turned seventeen, I wanted to get to a better shape so I ended up in the local gym. I was hooked. Since then It was clear that I wanted to compete in the future in bodybuilding.
In 1997 I was introduced to my future coach and mentor Matti Halonen whit whom I’ve been in cooperation since then. Together we decided that my first competition would be the Finnish junior Nationals in 1998. My first competition was both physically and mentally a priceless experience for me and even though the result was not what I expected my will and desire to become a better bodybuilder grew.
The hard work continued immediately and I decided with my trainer to compete again in 1999 in the Novice Nationals. The development between these two competitions was absolutely phenomenal and in 1999 I won my own category easily and my weight in the competition was 55lbs (25kg) more than it was in the junior nationals. This was a strong proof of the fact that a strong will and the power to work hard for your dreams can get you far. Since then I have always believed in insane brutal hardworking and I feel that the only way to get maximum results is hard work. There is no compromise.
My next competition was in 2003 in the Finnish Nationals in the heavyweight category and i placed third. After this competition I kept on training but I got excited on benchpress because I had always been a really strong bodybuilder and I wanted to show how strong a bodybuilder can be. I won many competitions and my record in a contest was in 2008 700lbs (317.5kg). I returned to bodybuilding in 2005 after seeing the 2004 Mr. Olympia in Las Vegas I knew that I wanted to focus on bodybuilding again and then I started dreaming about becoming an IFBB pro. All my dreams came true after winning the Finnish Nationals super heavyweight category with an outstanding performance in 2007. In 2008 all my hard work and commitment was rewarded: I got my IFBB pro card.”