Muscle Gauge Nutrition’s Osagie Osunde Talks To M&S

What is your athletic background, and how did you get involved with lifting?

Fitness has always been part of my life either in the form of athletics, sport specific training, Training for general health, Muscle Gauge Nutrition, and now competing in the men’s physique division. I got involved in Men’s Physique after realizing I was training hard on a daily basis but I wanted to take it to the next level and do something that held me accountable to get myself in the best shape of my life.

Another major influence in why I got involved in men’s physique is because the lifestyle is something I have always preached that makes you a better person. Many people do not realize the dedication and hard work it takes to get your body and mind in the best possible shape for these competitions. There is a big difference between having muscles and being absolutely shredded.

What do you love most about Men’s Physique?

I love the competition, team work, and unspoken family dynamic that is generated by the competitors in Men’s Physique. Everyone is always trying to get better from competition to competition and the person standing next to you knows how hard you had to work to get to where you are and has an extreme appreciation for it. Regardless of if it is on the boards, Instagram, Facebook, or in person the competitors are always trying to help and support each other in achieving their goals.

Osagie Osunde

What were the major milestones that gave you that “extra” motivation boost?

Taking 2nd place at my first show was awesome even though I received 2 completely opposite feedback from two different judges. Taking 8th place at my first national show was depressing but gave me extra motivation and notion on what I needed to work on moving forward. My next show will either be at the end of 2013 or the beginning of 2014 at which points I will make sure I am in the best physical and mental shape possible.

What keeps you motivated?

My Wife and 2 (soon to be 3 little girls), keeping myself in the best possible shape, and Muscle Gauge Nutrition.

What are your future goals, dreams and plans?

One of my biggest goals is to continue to compete and earn my IFBB Pro Card in men’s physique.

What does your current training and split look like, and what do you like most about it?

Osagie OsundePre NPC USA Championships:

  • Monday: Chest and Biceps, Weighted core exercises
  • Tuesday: Back and Triceps
  • Wednesday: Legs, body weight Core exercises
  • Thursday: Lower back and Shoulders
  • Friday: Auxiliary and Full Body workout Weighted core exercises
  • Saturday: Off
  • Sunday:  Off

I love the fact that I can hit every part of the body 2 times a week and still get my weekends off to spend with my family and kids. The workouts are difficult and fast pace and change every two weeks so it keeps my body in constant shock providing great results.

How often do you perform cardio?

I perform cardio 4-5 times a week for 45mins to an hour during contest prep. My philosophy on cardio is different than most people. I vary my cardio sessions throughout the week to usually encompass steady state cardio, high intensity cardio, and a combination of steady state and high intensity. After years of training I know how my body responds to certain cardio sessions in combination with my weight training and this allows me to stay healthy throughout my workouts and continue to Burn some serious fat!

Do you supplement your weight training and cardio with any other physical activities?

When possible I always like to vary my cardio I have a strong belief that it shocks your system into reacting better to your goals. When possible I have supplemented my cardio with basketball, flag football, rope osculation, and boxing.

Which do you prefer, and why…steady state cardio or HIIT?

I prefer a combination of the two. I have a strong belief that it shocks your system into reacting better to your goals as well as the other forms of cardio. This is just something that has worked well for me throughout my training.

Osagie Osunde

What are some of your best training tips for someone who wants to get ripped?

The biggest thing in getting ripped and looking aesthetic is diet. You can work out all you want but if your diet is not in line you will not see the results you are looking for and you will wonder why you are busting your ass in the gym only to look the same.

Your diet will allow you to pack on lean muscle and lose the unwanted fat. I am not saying diet is the only thing you need; you obviously have to put the time in the gym to get the results you are looking for. As cliché as it sounds you are what you eat so eating healthy and clean will help you achieve a healthy clean physique.

What are your favorite 5 muscle building exercises and why?

  • Hang Clean – I have always done this exercise throughout my training and I believe it helps build well sculpted traps and back. As a benefit it also helps core strength and explosiveness.
  • Bench Press – This lift has always been a part of my workouts mainly starting with my involvement in football where I did 225 lbs- 34 times my senior year of college.
  • Squat – There is nothing like this exercise which builds strong legs, core, and lower back. As your squat goes up your overall strength tends to go up. Squats is one of the best exercise for packing on additional muscle mass.
  • Dead Lifts – Great exercise for building a strong lower back, legs and core!
  • Pull Ups – Great exercise that you can do anywhere and you can also modify to target different body parts in addition to the lats.

Do you have any gym, muscle building or fitness pet peeves?

I cannot stand it when people come to the gym and sit on machines while talking on their phones and getting absolutely nothing done. You’re at the gym to workout so make sure that is what you are doing!

Osagie OsundeWhat are your best tips for getting ripped and shredded abs?

Clean eating with combination of weighted and non-weighted core exercises.

What advanced training techniques work well for you?

When cutting and during competition prep everything I do is superset.  I pair the muscle groups up and superset each one. For example I will do bench press, then go directly into barbell curls and then back to bench. I found that super setting helps increase my endurance and also serves as a form of cardio when done correctly.

What does your off-season bulking (eating) plan look like?

I never take part in an off season bulking program, I am very lucky in that I have good genetics that allow me to pack on muscle quickly and maintain it for a long time. During the off season I usually try to maintain clean eating but do not really regulate my caloric intake to the point of a strict diet.

What does your cutting (eating) plan look like?

In my final 3-4 weeks of competition prep my PCF ratio is usually around 50% protein/35% carbs /15% fats with a 1900 caloric daily intake. I have found that this is what works best for me.

  • Meal 1: Muscle Gauge Nutrition Pure Isolate  2 scoops (50g of protein)
  • Workout: Cardio or weight training or both
  • Meal 2: Breakfast – Whole wheat bagel thin /or multigrain bread, 1 whole egg, 3 Egg White, 3 slices of low sodium thin sliced turkey bacon, Ketchup, Coffee – sweetened with Splenda
  • Meal 3: One Serving of raw almonds, Muscle Gauge Nutrition Pure Isolate  2 scoops (50g of protein)
  • Meal 4: Lunch, Chicken Breast, 1 Cup Brown rice, 1 cup Broccoli
  • Workout: If cardio and weight training are not both done in the AM)
  • Meal 5: Either a post workout Pure Isolate protein shake so skip directly to dinner
  • Meal 5/6: Dinner – 3oz of salmon, One medium Sweet Potato, Steamed Asparagus
  • Meal 7: MGN Micellar Casein before bed 1 scoop

Cheat meals I believe are a must during competition prep. I usually hold off until the weekend because I have found that it is a lot harder to keep your diet inline when you are not as busy throughout the day. I only use one cheat meal during the week and I make sure I limit it to a meal and not the whole day! My cheat meal usually ends up being a burger or pizza or sometimes just dinner with the family at a restaurant.

Osagie Osunde

How do you prepare meals?

I usually prep my food to last me a 3-4 day period mainly cooking on Sunday and Wednesday night for the week.

Chicken breast is by far the most main course that I consume during competition prep. As I get closer to competition I move more into fish replacing about 6-8 meals a week with salmon, tilapia, and haddock. I usually try to keep red meat out of my diet during competition prep, but in the beginning phases I enjoy a low fat steak or two throughout the week.

I have always loved spices so Ms Dash sodium free spices and hot sauce are a must during prep. Some of my favorite meals are:

  • Grilled chicken and spinach salad
  • Baked salmon sweet potato and broccoli
  • Spicy salmon roll with brown rice.

What are your favorite cheat meals and foods?

Pizza and wings, cheeseburger and fries. My mom’s traditional home cooking.

What are some of your best diet, nutrition and supplementation tips for someone who wants to get ripped?

  • Osagie OsundeAbsolutely no fried foods.
  • Watch the type of condiments you use on your meals they usually tend to be high in fat, carbs and calories.
  • Bake and grill your foods with very little or no oils.
  • No fruit juice and regular soda if you do drink fruit juices make sure you stick to the serving size or find reduced sugar juices. Water is your best friend!
  • Stay away from enriched flour.

What are your thoughts of niche diet approaches like the Paleo Diet, Adkins Diet, Keto Runs, the Warrior Diet, Intermittent Fasting, etc.?

I do not believe strongly in major diets like this. Short term a lot of these diets work but it’s about understanding your body and what it needs. If you look at the history of diets there are diets that cover every single aspect regardless of if it is high protein, high fat, high carbs, or any of the ones listed. The reason there are so many of them is because different people react differently to each one so you will always be able to find someone with high regards of the results associated with specific diets.

The problem is almost all of these diets are hard to maintain over an extended period of time. The thing I preach to my clients is understanding what your body needs and how it reacts, once we understand this it is easy to put together a plan that is easy to maintain and will have you losing weight until you are at a point where you want to maintain it. You cannot just pick up a diet that completely changes how you live your life and assume that its going to work for you long term.

What are some of the biggest training mistakes you’ve made?

One of the biggest mistakes I have made is changing my diet in the days directly before the competition. This has caused me to come into the show flat and less vascular in the past (see photos from NPC Grand prix vs. USA National Championships).

Most people are stage ready about a week out from the competition, so if it’s not broken at those points then don’t try to fix it by completely changing your diet. This was a great tip I learned from WBFF PRO and MGN sponsored athlete Angela Dove prior to my USA championships. Competition prep is learning processes make sure you are doing what works best for you.

What are some of your favorite supplements and why?

  • Pure Isolate By MGN – Clean protein, easy mixing, and great tasting. I take this early in the morning, use it as snacks, and also use it post workout.
  • Alpha Rage – By far the best product I have ever taken this product must be taken every day and it will help improve muscle strength, endurance, and recovery. It is not your normal pre-workout as you will not get jittery from this product. I use this up to 2 weeks before competition then remove it from my supplement plan because it contains creatine. After alpha rage is removed I use the new MGN intenze as needed as a pre-workout.
  • Micellar Casein -This is a slower digesting protein that I use before bed!

Muscle Gauge Nutrition Whey Protein Banana Bread with Osagie Osunde

How important is nutrient timing for performance and/or building muscle?

You will see a lot of things out there that says nutrient timing doesn’t matter, but I personally think this is very important especially in men’s physique and anyone in competition prep. One of the biggest reasons I feel it is important is creating energy balance and regulation of metabolism throughout your day.

If your nutrient timing is off your energy levels can be reduced significantly with the amount of training you maintain on a daily basis during competition prep. If your timing is not in line it can also leave you open to failure to maintain your diet which can cause a ripple effect through your performance and results.

This can be one of the biggest pitfalls of anyone prepping for a show so I strongly feel that nutrient timing plays a big part in performance and building muscle.

Workout music – what’s on your MP3 player?

I absolutely need my MP3 player. I listen to anything fast paced and catchy. I have a very diverse appreciation for music so I will pretty much listen to and enjoy everything but country when working out.

If someone wants to connect with you, where can you be found?

Do you have any tips for someone who is looking to compete in your sport?

Be fully committed. You cannot succeed if you are anything but fully committed to your diet and training.

Be patient, competing is a learning process in which you will develop the knowledge for what the judges are looking for.

Ask questions regardless of it its from other competitors or from the judges and the show, the people you are surrounded with are usually more than willing to tell you how to improve.

What attracts you to the natural side of sports and competition?

I do not believe that drugs have a place in any kind of human competition. Although hard work is still needed the end result is an uneven playing field with people that have worked their whole lives to achieve their current ability and status. Another thing that attracted me to the natural side of sports is the fact that the people involved with it care about their body and health enough not to harm themselves by taking drugs.

Favorite activities and hobbies you enjoy when away from the gym?

Love spending time with my family and watching my kids play and learn. Outside of family I also enjoy golf, basketball, and flag football.

Movies and TV shows you’ve enjoyed recently?

Superman, Dexter, Breaking Bad and Magic City.

Which college or professional sports teams do you root for?

Ohio State Buckeyes and Dallas Cowboys!

Photo Credits:

5th Element


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