The actor and former California governor told The Hollywood Reporter his father thought he was overdoing it in his ambition to become a bodybuilder and his mother was worried.
"She saw the pictures on my bedroom wall of naked men oiled up," he said. "She called the house doctor and said, 'Is there something wrong? Is my son turning south here?' "
The story of Schwarzenegger's past as Mr. Universe is being told as part of ESPN Films' 30 for 30 Shorts digital series, the entertainment industry publication reported.
Co-director Michael Zimbalist said he decided to focus on the actor's earlier years because his life then was both "inspirational" and "relatable."
"When Arnold was 18 ... he had everyone around him telling him that his aspirations were silly," Zimbalist said. But Schwarzenegger was able to turn "lemons into lemonade."