Richard Sandrak was an Internet sensation at a very young age. Given the name "Little Hercules," Sandrak was a child body-builder who had incredible muscles.
His parents started him in martial arts but as time went on, he moved into more intense bodybuilding training. By age 6, the Ukranian-born kid was bench-pressing 180lbs. Each day, he would do 600 push-ups and sit-ups, as well as 300 squats. His trainer, Frank Giardina, was hired by the family to help gain publicity for their son.
Sandrak was on a strict diet as a kid, but he claims he was never forced into body-building so young.
"I've never been forced to train or do anything against my will", he said. "My parents used to train all the time and I wanted to join in. It was mostly my choice. It's just what I grew up doing. I was never forced. It was never an issue," he says.
Things got scary after Giardina quit his job as Sandrak's trainer, feeling his parents were borderline criminal with their insistence on the young boy's training. Sandrak's father, Pavel, threatened to kill Giardina. Soon after that, Pavel was thrown in prison for physically assaulting his wife. Sandrak and his mother left Pavel after this incident.
In 2015, Sandrak revealed he had quit body-building when he became bored with it, and also when his father was arrested. He still keeps in shape, but he certainly doesn't look like the "Little Hercules" we all remember!
Richard Sandrak, now 24 years old, works as a stuntman at the Waterworld: A Live Sea War Spectacular attraction for Universal Studios in Hollywood. Sounds pretty cool, right?
Sandrak wants nothing more than to put his body-building past behind him and start a new life. He dreams of becoming a quantum scientist for NASA! Frankly, with his proven dedication to the things he loves, I wouldn't be surprised to see that happen soon!
We're so happy to see you're doing well, Richard! Hopefully you can achieve all your dreams!