1. Tell us about yourself (i.e.. profession, accomplishments etc.)
Well I am a fitness author/writer, sponsored athlete with Muscle-Pharm and a professional fitness model and personal trainer. I’ve been blessed to have accomplished some wonderful things in the fitness industry. Over the past 3 years I’ve been on over 20 magazine covers, won the 2010 WBFF male fitness world title. I’ve travelled all over the world making guest appearances at bodybuilding/fitness shows and fitness expos. I am also a fitness expert columnist for more than 9 fitness magazines globally and I’ve been arguably the most published male fitness model internationally since 2009. If somebody would have told me in 2 or 3 years I would be doing what I am doing in the fitness industry right now I wouldn’t believe them.
Sometimes I really don’t believe what is going in my fitness career because I didn’t envision this when I first started but I am just a regular guy who works so hard at things that I am passionate about. I think most people in the industry can respect my work ethic. Jamie Eason paid me a great compliment when we are in Australia when we were giving a seminar together she said, “Obi is the hardest working male fitness model in the industry that I know”. I was flattered when she said that to so many people that were listening to us speaking at the expo.
2. What role does fitness play in your life? What are your future goals?
Fitness plays in my life in a way where it allows me to use this global platform that I have to help out as many people as I can get in the best shape possible. There is no greater feeling hearing that somebody has accomplished their fitness goals through your help. I really love the ability to motivate, inspire and educate people to live healthy lives. My future goals is to hopefully host my own fitness TV show as I believe television is the ultimate medium to help a large number of people to get fit and healthy. Another goal is to continue to grow my name bigger globally in the fitness industry. I am kind of branded myself as this international guy and I really love it because there are so many countries outside the U.S. that don’t have a fitness role model to look up to in regards to being fit so I embrace being a role model to kids and adults in India, Africa, Vietnam., Australia, Singapore, etc. I love getting those emails from fans in those respective countries. My fans truly give me the energy to continue my journey in the fitness industry. I would be nothing in the industry without them truly.
3. Who/what inspires you to be the best you can be?
What inspires me to be the best I can be first of all the fans that look up to me and gain inspiration by posting a photo or posting a fitness tip or sharing a fitness article. Also what motivates me are knowing that there are so many minorities that want to attain success in the fitness industry and are motivated by my success. A lot of them look up to me for inspiration because the industry is very scarce of successful black fitness models. I still remember and I will never forget when an editor told me not long ago that “Blacks cover will never sell”. We will put him in the magazine but I can’t put a black guy on the cover of my magazine.” I keep that as a bulletin board material for me anytime I am getting ready for a photo-shoot for a cover. I really try to be transparent and honest about the discrimination I’ve dealt with in this fitness industry because I think it is important for people to understand how hard it is for me and black fitness models period have to go through just to grace a cover of a fitness magazine. Even though I am ripped and I have decent abs I have to work 10 times harder than my peer to get on these covers.
It is so difficult for any ethnic fitness model to have success in the fitness industry but I do believe modestly speaking that the success that I have had has motivated so many Blacks, Asians, Hispanics that say to themselves if he can do then I can do it. I think the success I’ve had as an African-American fitness model gives hope to other minorities that they can attain the same success if they work hard. I am just trying to open the doors wide open for all minorities so they don’t have to go through the discrimination what I went through in this industry. So I try to work hard not only for myself and for my family but also for those aspiring ethnic fitness models and all of my fans of all races that support me.
4. What is your favorite healthy meal? What is your favorite exercise?
My favorite healthy meal is broiled chicken and my favorite exercise is pull-ups.
5. What is something most people don’t know about you?;)
I am known in the industry as this self-promoter but what most people don’t know is I feel so uncomfortable talking about what I’ve done accomplishment wise when you meet me face to face. If you ask me what do you have going on right now in the industry or what have you done in your career when you meet me. I always try to deflect that question and say I am just working hard or I say I feel blessed with what I’ve done. Unless you know me very well then I feel comfortable to talk about what I am doing in the industry but I typically will never tell you if you ask me in person what I am doing in the industry and what I’ve done. I feel very uncomfortable in fact I had to train myself to be comfortable talking promoting myself on facebook. Before I used to have someone do it for me because I didn’t feel right doing it myself on facebook.
So the face-book marketing side of me is totally different then the guy you meet in person. When I promote on facebook it is 100 percent business when you meet me in person 9 out of 10 times you will never hear me say anything about what I’ve done in the industry you would have to find that out on facebook or on my website. So what’s interesting about that there is those two sides of me the facebook side and the person you meet face to face which are very contradictory. I am very down to earth when you meet me and I don’t feel comfortable talking about my accolades and what I have in the fire when you meet me in person. So that is what most people don’t know is that I am totally different then the face-book/twitter guy that markets himself like crazy. It’s actually quite funny when you think about it 🙂