Dexter Jackson Retiring After The 2020 Mr. Olympia – A Look At His Career

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Dexter “The Blade” Jackson will be retiring after the 2020 Mr. Olympia competition. At 50 years old, many bodybuilding fans have been wondering when Dexter would call it quits. His retirement was announced on his official Instagram.  Dexter Jackson has arguably had the best professional career in bodybuilding history, so in honor of his retirement, we will be looking at his accolades. 


To put into perspective just how relevant The Blade is, he made his pro-debut at the 1999 Arnold Classic where he placed 7th. He won his pro card when he took the overall title at the 1998 NPC North American Championships.

Dexter Jackson's Best Wins

  • Mr. Olympia – 1st Place – 2008

  • Mr. Olympia – Runner Up – 2015

  • Mr. Olympia – 3rd Place – 2003, 2007, 2009, 2016

  • Mr. Olympia – 4th Place – 2002, 2004, 2006, 2010, 2012, 2017, 2019

  • Arnold Classic – 1st Place – 2008, 2013, 2015 

  • Dubai Pro – 1st Place – 2014 

  • Tampa Pro – 1st Place – 2019

  • Pro Masters World Championship – 1st Place – 2011

  • Ironman Pro Invitational – 1st Place – 2004


The list goes on. Dexter truly has an astonishing number of pro bodybuilding placings. His most recent big win was last year when he won the Tampa Pro as a part of a stacked lineup. Keep in mind, this guy was 49 years old and placed 4th at the Mr. Olympia last year. 


Dexter Jackson retiring is a big deal, but it will be interesting to see if he can bag a couple more victories in his last year competing. Regardless, he is one of the most successful bodybuilders in history.

Best Competition Year

Given Dexter’s extensive track record, there is definitely some debate as to what his best year was. To many people, 2008 was without a doubt Dexter Jackson’s best year because he won five major competitions. You can check out a picture of his physique that year below.

2008 mr olympia
Dexter Jackson in 2008

In 2008 alone, Dexter won the Mr. Olympia, Arnold Classic, Russian Grand Prix, New Zealand Grand Prix, and Australian Grand Prix. These competitions were also the only ones that he competed in that year. Essentially, Dexter went 5 for 5 while also taking home two of the biggest titles in bodybuilding. 


Throughout his career, Dexter has been known as the type of bodybuilder to compete often and always come in conditioned. In 2002, Dexter competed in 8 different pro shows, which is the most of his career. After the early years of his career, Jackson competed in 3-5 shows each year as opposed to 6-8.

Fun Facts and Stats:

Birthday: November 25th, 1969

Weight: 215 pounds on stage, 235 pounds off-season. 

Height: 5’6” 

Nickname: “The Blade”

Arm Size: 20” 

Chest Size: 52”


  • Dexter has stepped on the Olympia stage a total of 20 times. 

  • He has won nine Arnold Classic titles.

  • A total of 29 pro wins, more than any other bodybuilder. 

  • He has been on the cover of Flex Magazine and Muscular Development

  • Dexter is one of the oldest active bodybuilders to win a pro show. 

  • 74 top 5 finishes, as per his website.


Dexter is clearly a bodybuilding legend, and there’s no doubt that he will be missed after his retirement. His small waist and balanced physique were one of a kind, and definitely a driving force for many of his victories.

Post Retirement Plans

Honestly, who knows what Dexter’s plans are after he retires. He has several sponsorships with brands like Ultimate Nutrition, Pro Tan,  and Muscular Development. Chances are, he will still make pretty good money through sponsorships. 


In addition to his sponsorships, he is also the CEO of Built By Blade. Currently, there is nothing for sale on his website, but I’m assuming he will spend more time on his business throughout retirement. 


Although he will no longer be competing after 2020, Dexter will certainly be a notable figure in fitness for years to come.

Closing Remarks

Dexter Jackson retiring means that the bodybuilding community is losing a top competitor. Throughout his career, Dexter has been praised for his aesthetic and symmetrical physique. He has never been the biggest competitor, but his balanced physique certainly makes up for it. 


I encourage everyone who follows bodybuilding to take note of this year’s shows, particularly to see how Jackson performs. The 2020 Mr. Olympia competition will be his last show, and if he takes home a victory it would certainly be a sight to see. 


Considering that Jackson already won the Mr. Olympia in 2008, he has an automatic ticket to the show each year. The Olympia qualifications state that prior winners do not have to qualify, so he is guaranteed to compete this year. You can learn more about this topic by watching the video by Nick’s Strength and Power below.

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