Bodybuilding: A lifeline for my survival

A Critical Overview of Dave Bautista’s Relationship with Bodybuilding

Dave Bautista, a successful actor known for his roles in Guardians of the Galaxy and Dune, attributes his success and mental health to his love for bodybuilding. In a recent interview with Dan Solomon, the president of the bodybuilding company and competition Olympia, Bautista recounted his troubled past and how bodybuilding served as a therapeutic outlet for him. Bautista shared that he was a “f***ed up kid” who found himself in trouble with the law and hanging out with the wrong crowd. Bodybuilding provided him with a positive outlet for his anger and aggression, which he believes ultimately saved his life.

From Wrestling to Bodybuilding

Bautista’s love for physical activity started when he began wrestling as a junior in high school. However, it wasn’t until he discovered bodybuilding that he recognized his true passion. Bautista explained that he trained for years and wanted to become a bodybuilder after high school. Although he didn’t have what it took to become a professional bodybuilder, he continued training and used his physique and athleticism to become a professional wrestler. His wrestling career served as a gateway to his successful acting career, which has been his focus for the past few years.

Exiting the Marvel Role

Bautista, who has played Drax the Destroyer in Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy series, has announced that he will be stepping away from the role in May 2023. He attributes this decision to his age and the difficulty of maintaining his physique for shirtless scenes. Despite this, he remains committed to physical fitness and training for the mental health benefits it provides. In an interview with Men’s Health, Bautista explained that his physique is a byproduct of his training, rather than an end goal. He enjoys boxing, cycling, and working with a trainer to keep his workouts fresh and interesting.


Dave Bautista’s journey from a troubled teen to a successful actor highlights the power of bodybuilding as a therapeutic outlet for those dealing with anger and aggression. His love for physical activity, which started with wrestling, ultimately led him to discover his passion for bodybuilding. Although he is exiting his role in the Guardians of the Galaxy series, he remains committed to training for mental health benefits and finding new ways to stay active. His story serves as an inspiration to those struggling with mental health issues and emphasizes the importance of finding positive outlets for negative emotions.