From Washington state, Michael O’Hearn is one of ten kids. He says he grew up getting beat up by them all the time which drove his desire to become strong. O’Hearn started training when he was 9 and won his first bodybuilding competition at age 14. He won Mr. Universe 4 times and was voted as one of the greatest physiques of all time by the fitness industry. Injuries from falling off a stage ended that part of his career. O’Hearn has also made minor appearances in films such as Death Becomes Her as well as tv shows like American Gladiators and Battle Dome. ‘Titan’ O’Hearn has appeared on over 500 magazine covers and was voted fitness model of the year 7 times. His fitness brand is called Power Bodybuilding and it offers training and nutritional coaching. O’Hearn is married and has 1 child. He has over a million followers on social media. O’Hearn is 6 feet 3 inches tall and weighs about 250 lbs.
Mike O’Hearn’s Diet
Being a bodybuilder requires a lot of discipline, something O’Hearn has had plenty of practice with over the years. His diet is all about high-quality, good-tasting protein. He eats 6 meals a day and they include all the usual suspects, like egg whites, oatmeal, chicken breast, rice, salmon and vegetables. He also takes several supplements including fish oil, green tea and collagen. Even though he’s a celebrity, he does do some of his own cooking, but he also has a personal chef, so his chicken breast, rice and veggies are never bland.
- Medium Fat 25% 25%
- Low-Medium Carb 35% 35%
- High Protein 60% 60%
The first thing O’Hearn does each morning after waking at 3 am is to drink a glass of water. He says drinking plenty of water throughout the day is essential to promote strength and agility, and also to keep your muscles relaxed.
O’Hearn’s first meal of the day stokes his metabolism and delivers solid nutrition. He has whole eggs, a tomato and oatmeal, which he eats dry because he says that way he can eat more.
Fill It With Flavor
O’Hearn will add low-sodium chicken broth to his rice or lemon in his chicken salad to add flavor without adding empty calories.
Fear Not the Carb
O’Hearn believes carbs are absolutely a necessary part of his diet, and recommends anyone looking to gain muscle to eat enough of them.
Feel Free to Cheat
O’Hearn says besides carbs, cheat meals also help young lifters pack on the muscle. Cheats are also good for your mental state, because being too strict gets old. O’Hearn’s favorite cheat is ice cream with Nutella.
O’Hearn says it’s important to be extra careful about your food choices following a cheat to tamp down the cravings.
What to Eat
What to Avoid
O’Hearn on His Diet
‘I’m pretty strict.’
O’Hearn on Food
‘There’s a huge difference between chemicals, steroids, and grown hormones, and real food, supplements and vitamins.’
O’Hearn on Eating Real Food
‘First and foremost, I focus on food intake. That’s the foundation.’
O’Hearn on Supplements
‘I’m a huge proponent of supplements.’
O’Hearn on His Favorite Cheat
‘My cheat meal is vanilla ice cream with Nutella and strawberries, but I don’t recommend that because once you have it, it’s all over.’
Mike O’Hearn’s Fitness Routine
O’Hearn idolized both Bruce Lee and Arnold Schwarzenegger and wanted to be as agile and huge as the two combined.
O’Hearn says he was never attracted to taking steroids because he always wanted to truly earn everything he has.
O’Hearn says everyone’s biggest competition is him or herself. He says he loves proving to himself that he can achieve anything.
Rise & Shine
O’Hearn’s first work out of the day is at 4 am. He usually hits it with his BFF Mark Bell at 4 am. He does a second workout in the afternoon, and a third in the evening, which is often martial arts.
O’Hearn does cardio virtually every day to burn fat and stay slim. He works out 60-90 minutes at a time, 5 days a week. He also does judo and other martial arts for 2 hours at a clip, 3 times a week in the evening.
O’Hearn likes to do compound moves and high reps. He usually does 6-8 exercises per body part.
O’Hearn usually combines his weight training with ab work and cardio, which has the result of constantly pushing his body to develop. He’ll vary his routine through the year depending on what his specific goals are.
Some of O’Hearn’s personal bests include 815-lb. squat, 505-lb. benchpress and 760-lb. deadlift.
A Mike O’Hearn Sample Routine
Machine lateral raise: 6-10 reps x 4 sets
Front raise w/ plate: 6-10 reps x 4 sets
Overhead plate raise: 6-10 reps x 4 sets
Machine rear delt fly: 6-10 reps x 4 sets
Machine lat pulldown: 6-10 reps x 5 sets
Single arm machine row: 6-10 reps x 5 sets
Seated row w/ rope: 6-10 reps x 5 sets
Machine lat pulldown, leaning back: 6-10 reps x 5 sets
Front barbell squat: 6-10 reps x 4 sets
Machine leg press, closed stance: 6-12 reps x 4 sets
Machine leg press, wide stance: 6-12 reps x 4 sets
Standing squat machine: 6-12 reps x 4 sets
Standing squat machine w/ pause: 6-10 reps x 4 sets
Single arm triceps extension: 21 reps x 3 sets
Bodyweight dip: 21 reps x 3 sets
Cable triceps extension w/ rope: 21 reps x 3 sets
Barbell curl w/ triceps bar: 21 reps x 3 sets
Dumbbell reverse Spiderman curl: 21 reps x 3 sets
Seated dumbbell concentration curl: 21 reps x 3 sets
Decline bench ab crunch: 25 reps x 4 sets
Incline bench leg raise: 25 reps x 4 sets
Vertical knee raise: 25 reps x 4 sets
Kneeling cable ab pulldown: 25 reps x 4 sets
Bench ab crunch: 25 reps x 4 sets
O’Hearn on Hitting The Gym
‘It’s kind of like a fun playground for me.’
O’Hearn on His Motivation for Being Strong
‘I was getting my a** kicked by my brothers and sisters, so I knew I had to be both strong and athletic.’
O’Hearn on Mindset and Goal-setting
‘Instead of going to the gym to get in better shape and that is your only focus, start going to the gym to build a better You, starting with your mind approach.’
O’Hearn on Motivation
‘Motivation will come from getting better at something, achieving a better You. By you taking this time to work on your body along with your mind, this will give you double the motivation.’
O’Hearn on Squats
‘I never skip squats. Squatting is like breathing for me.’
Mike O’Hearn’s Supplements
O’Hearn takes the amino acid 5-HTP. HTP can help you feel full, improve mood, promote quality sleep and reduce pain including from migraines.
O’Hearn regularly supplements with calcium. Everyone knows we need calcium for strong bones, but the mineral is also essential for preventing muscle spasms, hypertension and insomnia.
O’Hearn also takes magnesium which regulates blood sugar and blood pressure, and supports metabolism and protein synthesis as well as quality sleep. Many people are deficient in this essential nutrient.
Zinc is another essential mineral O’Hearn supplements with. Besides strengthening immunity, it also aids with digestion, balancing hormones and is anti-inflammatory. O’Hearn often takes calcium-magnesium-zinc as a combo supplement.
O’Hearn takes BCAAs because they are the trifecta for athletes: they build and maintain lean muscle, and reduce recovery time.
Also in O’Hearn’s list of supplements is collagen. Collagen production starts to slow down as early as your 20s, and bodybuilders especially need to care for their joints.
O’Hearn takes DHEA, a hormone produced naturally in the body that can also be taken as a supplement. It’s popular with bodybuilders for its ability to decrease inflammation, improve muscle mass and bone density and boost weight loss.
O’Hearn also takes vitamin D, which strengthens the immune system and bones, and also offers protection against cancer, diabetes, and lung disease.
O’Hearn takes the superfood fish oil for its many benefits: to reduce inflammation, protect joints, and promote heart and brain health.
O’Hearn supplements with green tea which is another superfood. It burns fat, balances blood sugar, supports brain and heart health and protects against cancer.
O’Hearn incorporates vitamin C into his daily health regimen for its immunity-boosting qualities.
Another supplement O’Hearn takes is vitamin E which can reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease and arthritis. It also helps heal scars and boosts cognitive function.
Mike O’Hearn’s Lifestyle
O’Hearn kills it during the week, but reserves weekends for recovery so he doesn’t burn out. He also says sleep is essential to combat cravings which can really derail your diet.
O’Hearn says there are tons of misconceptions about bodybuilding out there, and that it’s important not to buy the stories without getting all the info. Believing lies can cause a lot of damage and hold you back.
School of Hard Knocks
O’Hearn was dyslexic which led to bullying and people telling him he would never amount to much. The negativity drove him to prove them wrong.
Long Live the Titan
O’Hearn says at age 50 he’s stronger than ever, and that he has no interest in using drugs or other artificial means to keep his muscles big. He believes that for longevity, natural is the only way to go.
O’Hearn doesn’t just hit the gym 3 times a day. He also finds the time to walk his 4 dogs. He has an Akita, a Siberian husky, along with a Ridgeback and a Chow who were rescue dogs.
O’Hearn on His School Years
‘I was in special ed classes most of my life. I was a kid who was told I could never really accomplish anything.’
O’Hearn on Learning
‘I never lost that school mentality.’
O’Hearn on Adopting a Pet
‘Everyone should rescue a pet. We could empty the shelters.’
O’Hearn on Variety
‘I never liked doing just one thing. I liked the variety that you get from doing everything.’
O’Hearn on his Heritage
‘Growing up in an Irish-Scottish-German family, we were stubborn. I mean stubborn.’