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The Item: Career Updates, Special Appearances, Andrew Oye's IFBB Pro Athletes Roundup

The Scoop: Recently Reported: IFBB Pro League athletes had career updates or made recent guest appearances at various bodybuilding, physique and fitness events. The "Andrew Oye's Pro-Muscle Report" latest roundup includes an Egyptian rookie and a soon-to-be-retiree?

The "So What?": Over the weekend, 2013 IFBB Pro Arnold Classic Europe Champ and 3-time Mr. Olympia IFBB Pro Phil Heath and IFBB Pro Ed Nunn participated in a training seminar as part of the IFBB Elite Bodybuilding Grand Prix in Athens, Greece (birthplace of IFBB Pro Michael Kefalianos). 2013 IFBB Pro Arnold Schwarzenegger Classic Champion IFBB Pro Dexter Jackson announced he won't return to Ohio's Arnold Sports Festival in 2014 to defend his title and contend for a record 5 wins (which would break his tie with IFBB Pro Flex Wheeler), leaving the battle largely between IFBB Pro Ben Pakulski and IFBB Pro Shawn Rhoden.

Rhoden (who spent a pre-Olympia week training with 8-time Mr. Olympia IFBB Pro Ronnie Coleman this summer) visited the Philippines, promoting his Shawn Rhoden Classic and encouraging the potential of local athletes As reported in the Manila Times, Rhoden's reaction to seeing Filipino bodybuilder Jay Catli: "I said, 'This guy is a beast'...I was thinking this guy could win Nationals easily." A week ago, IFBB Pro Dennis James and an athlete he coaches through contest prep, IFBB Pro Mamdouh Elssbiay (a.k.a. "Big Ramy"), were featured guest posers at the IFBB San Marino Classic in Italy. In addition, James announced that IFBB Pro Dennis Wolf and Cairo-born Big Ramy (who leapt into the 2013 Olympia Qualification Series and finished 8th at his Olympia Weekend debut, a spot above IFBB Pro Branch Warren and just two spots below IFBB Pro Jay Cutler) will be the guest posers at the next year's NPC Dennis James Classic in Phoenix, Arizona, on May 31, 2014.

Andrew Oye's Verdict: While a slight disappointment for fans of the athlete nicknamed "The Blade," it's also understandable that 44-year-old Masters Olympia Champion and 2008 Mr. Olympia Dexter Jackson, who is inching toward retirement, and just won the last 2013 contest (IFBB Tijuana Pro Show) might want to skip the very first 2014 contest (Arnold Classic) to rest his body.

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