Body Transformation: Olu Ben-Shidah Drops The Fat And Gets Jacked

Olu Ben-Shidah
At 285 lbs, Olu was unhappy, unhealthy and lacking energy. During his dramatic transformation, Olu cut down to 217 lbs while packing on muscle.
Editor's Note: Everyone is different and these results may not be typical for the average person. To achieve these results you need to be willing to put in the work both in the gym and in the kitchen. Use this transformation for motivation for you to make the changes you want!

Before Stats

  • March 2011
  • 252 lbs
  • 5'10"
  • 25%

After Stats

  • August 2012
  • 217 lbs
  • 5'10"
  • 7%

Lifestyle Prior To Change

What was your lifestyle like prior to your transformation?

Lots of being insecure. Being unhappy with myself, knowing I needed to make a change but was to lazy to do it.

What was your low point or turning point?

My low point was getting to 285+, always having chest pains and bad stamina.

Were there any unique challenges or circumstances that made your transformation particularly difficult?

Maintaining. I am a chubby kid at heart, so I love junk food and I gain weight easily. One week of bad food and bye bye abs.

Olu Ben-Shidah

Please provide a timeline including when you started the transformation, and include major milestones:

  • Transformation Start: I actually started working out when I was 13. It was off and on for years. My worst was when I got to 285 then I knew I had to make a change.
  • Milestone: Getting to 250lbs.
  • Milestone: Bench pressing 315 for 2 reps on flat bench.
  • Milestone: Getting to 225lbs.
  • Milestone: Benching 225 for 32 reps on flat bench.
  • Transformation End: Being at 217 ripped, lifting 315 on incline bench for 10, keeping strength while toning.

Olu's Training Approach

What was your weight training approach and split during your transformation?

I work out 6 days a week, trying to hit a different body part, some twice a week. I also love doing supersets for strength as well as toning.

Please add a workout that worked best for you:

Chest and Triceps
Exercise Sets Reps
Incline Dumbbell Press 5 30, 30, 8, 8, 6
Incline Dumbbell Flye 4 15, 15, 12, 12
Pec Dec 4 20, 15, 12, 10
Decline Hammer Strength Press 4 10, 10, 8, 8
Dumbbell Tricep Kickback 3 10
V-Bar Tricep Extension 3 10
Back and Traps
Exercise Sets Reps
Wide Grip Pull Up 4 Failure
Wide Grip Lat Pull Down to the Front 4 10, 10, 8, 8
Wide Grip Seated Cable Row 4 10, 10, 8, 8
Bent Over Row 3 10
Deadlift 3 10
Wide Grip Upright Row 4 12
Barbell Shrugs Behind the Back 4 15
Barbell Shrug 4 15
Quads, Hamstrings and Calves
Exercise Sets Reps
Smith Machine Squat 5 12
Barbell Lunge 4 12
Leg Press 4 12
Still Leg Deadlift 4 12
Leg Curl 4 12
Seated Calf Raise 3 20
Standing Calf Raise 3 20
Leg Press Calf Raise 3 20
Shoulders and Traps
Exercise Sets Reps
Seated Overhead Dumbbell Press 4 10
Bent Over Reverse Dumbbell Flye 4 10
Incline Bench Front Barbell Raise 4 12, 10, 8, 8
Front Dumbbell Raise 4 12
Reverse Pec Dec 4 15
Seated Cable Face Pulls w/Rope 4 12, 10, 8, 8
Dumbbell Shrug 4 15
Biceps and Triceps
Exercise Sets Reps
Barbell Curl 4 8
Dumbbell Curl 4 8
Incline Dumbbell Curl 4 8
Hammer Curl 4 8
Tricep Dip 4 12
Close Grip Bench Press 4 12
Tricep Extension 4 12
Skullcrushers 4 12
Quads, Hamstrings and Calves
Exercise Sets Reps
Squat 4 8
Hack Squat 4 8
Dumbbell Lunge 4 10
Leg Extension 3 25
Seated Leg Curl 3 25
Standing Single Leg Curl 4 10
Seated Calf Raise 4 12
Standing Calf Raise 4 12

Olu Ben-ShidahPlease detail your cardio approach during your transformation?

Hit 45 minutes of cardio daily. Switch it up; I do jump rope for 10-15 minutes or 1500 reps, then HIIT on treadmill. Put the speed as high as you can go and do 30 second sprints back and forth for 15 minutes, then walk the rest on incline at 4 speed. Depends how I feel, I usually run or do sprints after my workout.

Please list 3 things you learned about exercise, weight training and/or cardio during your transformation that helped you succeed:

  1. Form is everything! Doesn’t matter if it is light, medium, or heavy weight, you want to have a fit looking body of muscles, do it right. Don’t lift heavy to impress others if you are lifting the weight wrong.
  2. Cardio is essential to having a lean body, as well as healthy heart.
  3. When your body tells you to stop…listen! 

How are you currently training, and has your training changed since the completion of your transformation?

Training heavy, and fast. My workouts use to be 2+ hours. Now hour to hour and half tops! 

Olu's Diet And Supplement Plan

What was your diet/nutrition approach during your transformation?

Eat a clean 6-7 meals and intake plenty of water.

Can you give an example of what your daily meal plan looks like?

  • 7:00 am - 1 Roxy Lean capsule 1 glass of water.
  • 7:30 am - Green apple with fish oil 1 glass of water.
  • 8:00 am Pre-Workout - Super Pump MAX.
  • Post-Workout - 2 scoops of AMP Extreme Wheybolic 60.
  • 10:30 am - 5 egg whites, 1 whole egg, 1 wheat toast, and watermelon with CLA and multivitamin 2 glasses of water.
  • 12:30 pm - Handful of unsalted peanuts with a glucosamine capsule 1 glass of water.
  • 3:00 pm - 2 cups of baked chicken strips with 1 cup of green beans and 1 cup of brown rice with CLA 2 glasses of water.
  • 5:00 pm - 1 cup of pineapples with a glucosamine capsule 1 glass of water.
  • 7:30 pm - 2 cups of turkey breast with 1 cup of green beans or broccoli with 1 fish oil capsule, 1 CLA and 1 multivitamin 2 glasses of water.
  • 10:00 pm - Scoop of Wheybolic Extreme 60 with a flax seed oil capsule 1 glass of water.

Were there any diet/nutrition mistakes you made that you learned from?

Portions. I tend to eat until I am overly full, this is a fail.

Olu Ben-Shidah

Please list 3 things you learned about diet & nutrition during your transformation that helped you succeed:

  1. Food really has an effect on your body. I have never looked so toned if it wasn’t for eating clean. 
  2. Eat many small meals so that your metabolism is speeding up. The less food that you intake, the more your body stores the food it does get and it turns into fat. So eat up!
  3. Let’s be real, eating clean all the time sucks! So have a cheat day so that you keep sane and don’t give in to always eating fat. Have that one day to look forward to, just don’t overdo it.

Did you allow yourself cheat meals?

Of course, your body needs fats. Don’t completely deprive yourself from the things you like, just be strict about it. As opposed to eating a pack of cookies, eat a few out of the pack.

What supplements did you use during your transformation?

Advice For Others

Olu Ben-ShidahWhat are your best 3 tips for someone looking to make their own transformation?

  1. List to those who know how it is done. Listen to good advice of others, this is how we learn. I don’t care how big I get, I can always improve.
  2. Take your time. Rome wasn’t built in a day. I didn’t get to where I was in a day, so don’t get discouraged when you don’t see results ASAP.
  3. Rest! Our body is broken down while lifting weights, it is repaired while you sleep, so make sure you get lots of it! Also consume a lot of water, a gallon a day.

How do you stay motivated? What advice would you give to someone who’s having trouble staying on track?

Think of where you want to be, envision it, now go for it. I see how far I have come and know where I never want to be again. “Only those who risk going too far, may possibly find out how far one can go” - T.S. Elliot. 

Your Life Now

What is your life like now that you’ve made a transformation?

Beautiful! I inspire many people to live healthy lives. I get compliments all the time, I feel great about myself and what I have accomplished. Not only do I look good, I feel even better. Nothing I don’t see myself doing now. 

What motivates you currently to keep improving yourself?

Seeing how far I have come motivates me. Seeing how I motivate others, every sees me fit now so I can’t disappoint, especially myself.

Anything else you would like to share?

Consistency is key. Pick out what you want to look like and set goals, I swear once you get here you will not look back.

How Can People Contact You?

How can people contact you?

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14 Comments+ Post Comment

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Posted Mon, 03/07/2016 - 20:52
DJ

Very inspirational! Congrats and thanks for sharing your story.

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Posted Sat, 11/15/2014 - 22:37
jeff

I like your workout routine what exercises do you do for abs and on what day?

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Posted Mon, 10/14/2013 - 05:32
Jawad

Excellent work bro truely amazing. Great change I would love to do the same myself. I cant understand why there's so many haters giving thumbs down

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Posted Thu, 06/13/2013 - 17:48
tommy

This work out owns. Can't wait to start the new routine.

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Posted Fri, 05/24/2013 - 02:44
james delrosa

I messaged Olu and he was brilliant sharing his tips, thankyou.

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Posted Sun, 01/20/2013 - 18:07
Sam

hallo i had a question in your set you do Incline Dumbbell Press 5 30 times heavy or light??

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Posted Thu, 09/27/2012 - 22:28
Drew

This guy should be an inspiration to many. Keep up the good work Olu and let me know how them contest work out if you enter any. I am still trying to catch up but have a lot of set backs, but when i get back on my grind i am coming for you. You helped me start my transformation, now i have to finish my journey. Watch out

God Bless
Drew

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Posted Sun, 09/23/2012 - 19:14
Kendra

Wow I am the lucky lady who calls this guy my boyfriend! Love u babe! Proud of u!!!

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Posted Fri, 09/21/2012 - 12:53
glen

yeaaa buddy i use to work out with this guy when i was depressed lol.. conrads bro glad to hear you finally got where you wanted.. much luck in the future hope to see you soon.. glen

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Posted Thu, 09/20/2012 - 12:00
Sarah

WHOOOAAAA! Very sexy! Keep it up big guy!

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Posted Thu, 09/20/2012 - 11:58
Phil Peters

AMAZING transformation man! I am a big guy also, so seeing how a fellow big man can go from before to now gives me hope! Thanks man, keep up the great work

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Posted Thu, 09/20/2012 - 11:51
Mike

Great work man! You are an inspiration for sure! Love the routine

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Posted Fri, 09/14/2012 - 08:47
Mohan Vedam

Inspiring story man. Already took your workout schedule and started working on.

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Posted Wed, 09/12/2012 - 13:00
Alex

Truly an inspiration to all looking to be happy with themselves. Thank you for this amazing story of dedication.

A motivation on its own!!