Interview With Bodybuilder Shinji Ogita Interviewed by Ben Tatar of CriticalBench.com - October 2008
CRITICAL BENCH: Critical Bench is here with Shinji Ogita. Shinji introduce yourself to Critical Bench.
My name is Shinji Ogita. I'm from Japan and have been in the U.S since 2001. I came here for study. I have a bachelor in dietetics, and I'm currently studying for my master in Kinesiology at Southern Illinois University Carbondale. I used to do MMA when I came to the U.S first, but I always liked lifting weights and decided to compete for Mr. SIUC 2004, which was a school bodybuilding show. I was hooked and decided to keep competing since then. I've competed 5 times (3times in IL, and twice in WA). I also lived in WA from 05-07. I'm also a member of SIUC weightlifting club, which we organize Mr. & Ms. SIUC.
CRITICAL BENCH: Very nice resume. You're a solid student, MMA fighter and bodybuilder. What is your favorite part about being on stage in a bodybuilding show?
I love going on stage and getting cheered from the audience.
CRITICAL BENCH: What moment in bodybuilding has changed you the most so far?
That's my first show. I was always a small guy since I was child, and never thought about competing. It was great to see my physique changing and realized anything is possible if you try.
CRITICAL BENCH: What gym do you train at and what is it like?
I go to the Recreation center in school. The Rec center itself is nice, but the weight room is very old school. No A/C but several big fans. Not many girls go in there; it's very humid during the summer time and smells pretty bad. I think the school is trying to make it more like fancy fitness club to get more people in there, but I like how it is now. It has pretty much everything we need.
CRITICAL BENCH: You definitely have the hardcore iron minded spirit. What do you think of most of the bodybuilders in the game?
I like most of them. I like meeting new people every time when I compete. I don't like if they act like they know everything because they are just big.
CRITICAL BENCH: What is your diet like?
I usually consume very high carbs. Off season is high carb(500-600g), high protein(180-220g) and moderate or low fat(50-70g). I always cook my meals and Japanese foods don't naturally use much oil, so I don't feel comfortable consuming too much fat. My stomach just can't handle it. I usually have to eat a lot to gain weight, so consistency is the most important things for me. When I get ready for a show, protein intake doesn't change much. I just cut my carbs gradually and make some small changes every week.
CRITICAL BENCH: What is your favorite supplement?
My favorite supplement is MHP Up Your Mass. This one has been helping me to get some extra calories for bulking up. I also enjoy Kre-alkalyn from All American EFX.
CRITICAL BENCH: MHP is one of the best. Give us your workout routine?
Right now I do basic split routineS. I workout 4 days a week, such as this:
Day 1: legs
Day 2: chest and triceps
Day 3: off
Day 4: back and calves
Day 5: shoulders and biceps
Day 6 and Day 7: off
Everything depends on my class schedule, so it always changes. I train everybody part once a week for about 2 or 3 months and change to train whole body twice a week. I don't have specific orders or exercise, but my first exercises are usually heavy weights and low reps, then 2nd and 3rd exercises tend to be a little bit lighter and higher reps. I workout everything once a week, each body part is about 8-12 sets depending on body parts. If I workout everything twice a week, I do less volume for each workout. This has worked well for me to get stronger so far. I used to do a lot more volume when I started. Now I try to keep my workout shorter, about one hour, to see how my body responds.
CRITICAL BENCH: What is your opinion about the steroid debate?
I'm not opposed to those who want to use them. It is their choice and it's none of my business. I just hate when they lie. Other people taking steroids and getting big is not going change my physique. I decided to compete natural and just do my job.
CRITICAL BENCH: What makes the difference between champion bodybuilders and average lifters?
Determination and consistency. One who wins always finds a way and they do not make excuses like not being able to find time for a workout or getting injured, etc. There is always a better way. Also, they have a clear vision of what needs to be done and how to do it. Average lifters do not have much will to learn.
CRITICAL BENCH: What have been the high lights of your bodybuilding career?
Every day of my life. I have gotten to know a lot of people since I've started bodybuilding. It's nice being able to help others or hear some people look for my physique. That's a great feeling and I never expected it to happen. I still feel like "how did it happen?" everyday.
Getting qualified for the nationals at the Emerald cup 2007. I got 2nd place in bantam weight.
Getting 2nd place in my first bodybuilding show. I thought I would get the last place.
CRITICAL BENCH: What are your future goals?
My future goal is to get a pro card in natural bodybuilding organizations, such as WNBF, IFPA, or NGA. I'm the only Asian bodybuilder in school history, so I would like to be the first pro bodybuilder from SIUC.
CRITICAL BENCH: What do you enjoy doing away from bodybuilding?
I like watching movies and hanging out with my friends most of the time. I'm pretty busy with school and other things, and don't get much free time, so I just like to relax on the weekends.
CRITICAL BENCH: What is your favorite exercise and what is your least favorite?
Favorite exercise is chin-up or any type of exercise for back. My back has always been a strong part. Least favorite is probably calf raises. I never liked soreness on my calves.
CRITICAL BENCH: What is the best advice you were ever told and what was the worst?
The best advice is to stick with the basics and keep things simple. The worst advice was there was a guy who told me not to do push-ups because it's not good. I don't know why he said it.
CRITICAL BENCH: What are some of the biggest reactions you have ever gotten towards your amazing physique?
That's probably my family in Japan. They have never seen my competition, so I sent some photos. I'm not a big guy, but first thing my brother said was "are you taking steroids? Don't do it. It'll kill you"
CRITICAL BENCH: What motivates you to be the best you can be?
I think this is pretty much addiction. Things are never enough. Everything is my own responsibility. Besides, there are so many people with great physique out there, and I just want to be like one of them.
CRITICAL BENCH: What is your advice for the younger bodybuilder who looks up to you?
Be patient and be open minded.
CRITICAL BENCH: That's great advice. What is your favorite thing about yourself?
I think I am a pretty disciplined and a friendly person. My name Shinji means humble and discipline, so I would like to be just like what my name means.
CRITICAL BENCH: Shinji, you have been quite the success story and we know you have an amazing future ahead. In closing who would you like to thank?
Thanks to Ben for this opportunity, and always thanks to my friends and family who support me.