My Experience With Rheo Blair - Anthony Pitko

Anthony and I met Rheo the same year, 1978. While my story is well known at this point. you are going to want to read what Anthony shares here. The story he tells, and the way he tells it is, in a word, AWESOME. Anthony and I had similar health issues; reading his story brings back clear memories of my own and of the wonderful man that changed both our lives. Anthony had one huge advantage: while I was 16 when I began my transformation, Anthony was only 10 and this in and of itself was important. Rheo told me many time that if he could have gotten to me a few years earlier, I could have had a much more muscular body. Those early teen years are critical hormonally and developmentally. Anthony was able to take full advantage of those years. His story is riveting:

"I was 10 in 1978, sickly, asthmatic, skinny, allergic to everything. Nicknamed the stick and beat up by bullies on the schoolyard for being weak, my parents were more than worried. Trips to the child psychologist, me not eating, wanting to die, this is not normal for a 5th grader. Up until then I was a gifted student, straight A’s, took school seriously and was put into accelerated learning classes and could finish an entire year of school books in just 3 weeks.  But here I was, failing 5th grade, could barely walk, so very sick.

Health has always been my Dad’s biggest thing. “The box has more nutrition than the contents.” He would say. Rheo Blair was coming to town in a large auditorium in the South Bay. We wouldn’t listen to my dad about sugar and processed food, so he brought me to listen to Rheo talk. I listened and seeing his stories of turning otherwise walking dead into these strong, muscular, good looking people. The stories blew my mind. It was at this point I wanted health so badly; I was making a change right there and then no matter what.

At the talk, Rheo had a raffle drawing for supplements, a private consultation, a workout book, etc. There must have been 1500 people there. I won the consultation. God answered my prayers. I was going to sit down with Rheo at his home on Van Ness and have him tell me how to be like the people on the slideshow. I was ecstatic. I stood up with my winning raffle ticket and everyone clapped.

My parents drove me up to Rheo’s home a few weekends later and we got to talk for an hour, that was all that was allowed. Rheo took one look at me and saw how sick I was. The sunken purple eyes, lack of nutrition obvious from my tiny and weak frame, breathing heavily from asthma and allergies. Rheo suggested a month stay at his home. My parents had no choice, I was going to die anyway. I said yes, let’s do this. I got pulled out of school, packed up and moved in. Pretty scary for a 10 year old in Hollywood with strangers, but for me, this was my chance to get my life back, to be like those people in the slideshow. I was a pretty tough kid and went through a lot, I knew I could handle myself, so I just trusted and listened and got to work.

Day one, eight glasses of water, platefuls of vitamins and supplements, lots of eggs and protein shakes, natural ice cream.  Lifting weights was a routine two to three times a day, down an amino acid vitamin after every set, and a bite of a banana, back to reps. Then it was off to the therapist for hot/cold baths, massage, stretching and then sleeping. I slept like I never slept before, which is something I never did before anyway.

Next day - same routine. No bullies to worry about, no school, just me. The weights, the vitamins, the protein shakes, meat, potatoes, veggies, fruit, supplements again, hit the weights, treadmill. After a few weeks of this regimen, I noticed something, I wasn’t having asthma attacks, I gained weight, I felt strong, I had energy, I could sleep, I wasn’t taking any medications anymore. The transformation was mind-boggling.

I could go into the stories of daily life with Rolff, his right hand man, the therapist, Richard the
messed up 10 year old pot smoker, his friend Regis Philbin who I used to work out with, and all the other people that came into my life that month. I remember almost every single day.

When I finally said goodbye and went home, I threw out everything that had an ingredient label on it. From now on it was only meat, veggies, fruit, water – and LOTS of vitamins.  When I made it back to school, people just stared at me. What happened to Anthony? Why was he gone? Why does he look different? I was the smallest in the class, the weakest and certainly the sickest. Within two years of my daily Rheo regimen, I grew 7 inches. I was 5’07” at age 12, finally topped off at 5’08” at 13. I was now the quarterback of the flag football team, playing basketball, volleyball, beach volleyball, surfing, biking, running daily, eating better than anyone I knew and taking a lot of Rheo supplements.

Today I am 45 years old, 9% body fat. I lift weights 5 days a week. I don’t look 45, most guess 32-35. I feel like I’m 16 again - all the time. I run up stairs, I run across the street, paddle surf into big waves, rock climb cliffs, I’m always moving and there isn’t a day that goes by when I don't look up and say ‘Thank you Rheo for my life.” I always dreamt of that slideshow of the people Rheo helped and all I wanted was to look like that. I’ve had that for 30 years now and it never gets tiring." -- Anthony Pitko

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Information found on Rheo H. Blair: The Book is meant for educational and informational purposes only, and to motivate you to make your own health care and dietary decisions based upon your own research and in partnership with your health care provider. It should not be relied upon to determine dietary changes, a medical diagnosis or courses of treatment.