Mike O’Hearn Interview
Mike O’Hearn is a 4 time Mr. Universe, 4 time California Powerlifting Champion, Strongman Champion, California Judo Champion, 7 consecutive year winner, Male Model, featured on over 500 magazine covers, American Gladiator Team Captain “Titan”, “Luke” from Days of Our […]
Mike O’Hearn is a 4 time Mr. Universe, 4 time California Powerlifting Champion, Strongman Champion, California Judo Champion, 7 consecutive year winner, Male Model, featured on over 500 magazine covers, American Gladiator Team Captain “Titan”, “Luke” from Days of Our Lives, Team Captain for MAGNUM Neutraceuticals, and Team Captain for Bodybuilding.com. Check out how he began his fitness journey and how it has taken him to great levels of success.
How did you get started in fitness and training?
I got my start because of my family. My dad was a football player, and a bodybuilder, and my mother was an artist, she believes that you should always, in this life, live your dream. In a family of 10, being the youngest boy, I was getting my ass kicked on a daily basis. Not just from my brothers. Besides my brothers doing bodybuilding, and power lifting, so did my sisters. Everybody was required to do martial arts. Being the youngest boy, I was usually the punching bag. So you tell me, if I didn’t start, what the heck was I going to do?
What keeps you motivated to continue training?
To understand what motivates me, you have to understand that I’m living my dream. There is nothing more motivating than that. I wake up every single day, being able to live, and do exactly what I want to. That’s motivation x10 because I never want it to stop.
What training mistakes did you make when you first started?
Going away from what had worked for me for years, because people were telling me I was doing it wrong. I was young, and naive, in the same sense, I did try all different types/methods of training. I guess I wouldn’t know what worked for me best if I hadn’t done that. So it’s an oxymoron.
What is your most memorable movie / television appearance?
Being on the Jay Leno show, just a great guy, I had a great time. I mean come on, it’s the Jay Leno Show. The only thing that would have topped that would be the Dave Letterman show.
Who is the most interesting person you follow on Facebook or Twitter?
Anthony Robbins, if I have to explain that answer, I’m going to slap your readers.
What workout routine has worked best for you?
I’m a big believer in the Russian style of training for powerlifting. What I’ve incorperated is I’ve taken the benefits for powerlifting, and truely the basic exercises from bodybuilding that work, and combined them to create my own training program called “Mike O’Hearn’s Powerbodybuilding”. So this is how I recommend most people to bodybuild. However most bodybuilders are not strong, so they don’t like the idea of the powerlifting exercises. If you are interested in seeing my training videos, check it out on www.Facebook.com/MikeOHearnOfficialPage
What is your favorite form of cardio for cutting body fat?
Stepmill, and treadmill at a high incline with my dog Stryker. Why? Because this is what works for me. Everybody is different so do not just do what I do. Try things.
Could you outline your basic daily diet?
I stay ripped year round off the same basic diet. I’ll change it around a bit. 30 grams protein for each meal, 8 meals a day. First 4 meals I’ll throw in an average of 50grams of carbs each meal with some fats. Last 4 meals, add green veggies with each meal. Nutrition is one of those things. My diet works great for me, but may not work for anyone else. My recommendation is try different things, you’ll find what works.
What are your favorite pre and post workout meals?
Favorite pre-workout is 10 egg whites with 1 yolk, 1 cup of oatmeal, dry.
Favorite post-workout is 8oz chicken with some salsa, and 1 cup of brown rice.
What supplements do you take (if any) and recommend to others?
All of my products, I get from MAGNUM. It’s a company that makes high end vitamins. They don’t skip out on what’s important to make a cheap product. I take DNA, OPUS, Quattro, Thrust, and Glutamine.
What has the biggest impact on muscle growth and recovery?
Nutrition first, recovery second, and training third. If anyone tells you different, they’re trying to sell you something.
What are you most proud of?
My career as a whole. To be able to be a champion in four different sports, and also be on T.V. for the last 15 years, and be able to live my dreams. It’s kind of hard to just pick one thing. I love everything I’ve done as a whole.
You’ve been on over 500 magazines, and romance covers. Did you travel to many ‘exotic’ locations for any of the cover shoots? If so, where was your favorite place to visit?
Man, I would like to say I did. I’ve traveled all over the world, but that was more for movies, T.V., commercials, and competitions, for a lot of the fitness magazines, I shot in Hawaii, or Cabo, but for the romance covers I shot everything in Manhattan, New York City. Which is actually great for be because I live in California, and for me New York is fun to visit, just wouldn’t want to live there.
Let me give you a destination regardless, though it’s not related to shooting covers. I did a movie called “Barbarian” in Russia, and Lithuania, still to this day these two places were the most amazing. I was filming, so I saw a lot of the countries. The location scouts did a good job, the movie being called “Barbarian” you can imagine the kind of countryside I was in. The castles, and being able to do all this on horseback solidified I wouldn’t be able to top it with just a basic trip to Hawaii.
What is your favorite motivating quote?
“There are NO limits, there are only plateaus, and you MUST go beyond them.” – Bruce Lee
How do you deal with cravings for junk food, sweets and salty foods?
I eat them. I have my off season where I let the body recover, and do what it wants. I believe you can’t be too anal, your body will adapt to anything. If you eat too strict year round, your body doesn’t utilize nutrients the same way. Just like your workouts, you have to change them up. Now again, this is my philosophy, you should try and do everything, but my way is right.
What type of music do you listen to in the gym?
I don’t. Don’t roll that way. I don’t work out, I go in to do battle. Motivated people don’t need music.
Do you recall some of the funniest moments in front of the camera?
Oh my gosh yes. It was my first interview with HardCopy, which is like ET, or Extra!. I have no idea what came over me for that shoot. I guess I was putting a lot of pressure on myself because as soon as that camera went on, and they started interviewing me, I didn’t freeze up. I’ve never really done that on camera, but what I did do was get long-winded, or “chatty” if you will.
When I was saying things, I could hear it in my head, my own voice screaming at my saying “You are an idiot!” I was saying some of the silliest things. We filmed for 6 hours that day, and when I finally saw the interview on the T.V. they cut it down to where the only thing I said in the interview was “I’m Mike O’Hearn the new Topaz man!” Maybe you had to be there, but it was one of those that I still remember to this day, and laugh about.
You became more famous globally through the show “American Gladiators” which is hosted by Hulk Hogan. What are your memories from that show and what do you believe you took from this show as Mike?
Let me just start by saying you mentioned Hulk Hogan in this question. I have to tell the readers as nice as you think Hulk Hogan is, he’s even nicer. This guy is such a great man, as an individual. Caring, passionate, and gives back to his fans, and society. He was just a pleasure to work with. What I took from the show I think, that’s a tough one, because I don’t think I took a lot away from the second run of American Gladiators, besides the good times with my team mates, and contestants.
I would say it was my stint on the Original American Gladiators really shaped my career, and took a lot more away from it. On the Original show, my show-name was “Thor”, but I got to work with people like Dan Clark, who was “Nitro” on the show. Jim Star, who was “Lazer” on the show, and I sat back, and I watched how these guys trained, competed, spoke up when they needed to, and kept their mouths shut when they needed to. They were just a class act. I don’t think I would have been as successful on the remake of American Gladiators if it wasn’t for those guys, and me paying attention. Dan Clark said something to me that I still hold true to this day. “You want to lead one day? Then learn to follow.” And I did just that. Something I rarely see in other people.
Any last advice for beginners or anyone looking to get into fitness?
Stay with the basic exercises, don’t read any fitness magazines on new techniques, or how they are telling you to train. Do what you’re doing here, go to the pros, and see how they started lifting, not what they are doing today, as a pro, but what they did when they were in their early teens, and 20’s. The basic exercises work no matter how advanced you are.
Would you like to add anything else?
Yes, I’d love to talk about the charities I’ve been working with. Recently, I was lucky enough to be asked by MATTHEW MCCONAUGHEY’S Foundation “J.K. Livin’ (Just Keep Livin’)” to work with them. It’s nice to be in a position where people look to you for guest speaking, and teaching the youth of today how I’ve succeeded in my career, stayed on a good path, and lived my dreams. It’s true what they say, it feels good to give back.
Matthew funds the 4 schools in LA, and 2 in Austin,Tx. Think Together funds our programs at their 4 schools in Santa Ana and Covina. Texas Rangers fund our 3 schools in Dallas. Drew Brees funds the program in New Orleans. This year they will be adding at least 5 more schools in L.A. as well as possible schools in Washington DC, and San Diego.
I also do some work with “Good Dog Animal Rescue”, which is based here in Los Angeles. This one is my passion, anything I can do to help misplaced dogs. I just have a bond with animals, but especially dogs.
Favorite Food: Hands down, steak burrito. Yes, that’s with extra steak. lol. Actually, it’s with an extra burrito on the side.
Favorite Dessert: Most definitely it’s my vanilla icecream, with strawberrys and nutella.
Favorite Movie: The Natural starring Paul Newman
Favorite TV Show: House
Dark or Milk chocolate: Dark chocolate. I actually keep a cup of dark chocolate covered espresso beans in my freezer. I get 3 a day.
Favorite Model of Car: 1974 CJ5
Do you have any pets: Do I have any pets?! Hmmm, oh yes! I have 4 incredible dogs. I have my Akita, Elvis, my Husky is named Stryker, My Ridgeback, Bunny, and my Chow, Teddy. It’s a funny story how I got Teddy, and Bunny, who I have had for quite a while now. I did a cover story photo shoot for Muscle and Fitness. Yeah, this is where I got two babies. Yes they were “props” that Muscle and Fitness provided. However, after shooting with them for 8 hours, I was under the assumption they were somebodies puppies, but when the shoot ended, the photo coordinator states she had to “Take the puppies back to the pound”. I said “You ain’t going anywhere with these two.” I handed her two hundred bucks, and said they’re going home with me. Which was more than I probably got paid for the shoot. Which is ok with me.
What profession other than yours, would you like to attempt? A veteranerian
If heaven exists, what would you like to hear God say when you arrive at the pearly gates? Man! You were fun to watch!
Check out more from Mike:
I’m really excited to have your fans be some of the first people ever to see a project that I developed. I wrote this T.V. show, and produced it as well. It’s called Alter Ego, and there are 6 episodes, and you guys get to see the first right here. www.youtube.com/alteregomovie
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