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1. Jon, although I have a pretty good idea on your background, do you mind briefly summarizing the awesomeness that encompasses Jujimufu?
Jujimufu - Well, I’m 29 years old, living in the United States in the state of Alabama and have been training and dieting since 1999. In 2000 I started teaching myself something called tricking (tricking is an aesthetic blend of flips, twists and kicks). In 2002 I launched the website trickstutorials.com where I grew the largest community of online tricksters outside of social media.
2. Where did the name Jujimufu come from?
Jujimufu - When I was 14 years old I wanted a username for AOL messenger. I became frustrated when all the other names I wanted to register were taken. In a rage, I spat out JUJIMUFU, which, of course, wasn’t taken and is complete nonsense. And it has been my curse since then.
3. Makes sense. Before we get into your training and diet, I want to hear more about your "Kitchen Gym." It appears you have a pretty decked out power rack in your dining room, why in there versus elsewhere or just getting a gym membership?
Jujimufu - I have a gym membership too, I don't think it's wise to select one of the other, both is better! I put it in the dining room of my apartment because there was nowhere else to put it! I don't have a garage.
4. Ahh, a problem that plagues many readers. Where there's a will, there's a way! What equipment do you have?
Jujimufu - A lot haha! I have a Rogue Monster RM-6 Rack, a couple barbells, 585 lbs worth of high-quality bumper plates and some iron plates to supplement. A Spud Inc. cable attachment combination, a land mine, and hundreds of accessories. This is essentially "what I do" so it's a growing collection. Tools of the trade.
5. I too am a gear whore so no worries there. Let's say you were stranded on Anabolic Island with an unlimited amount of food but were only allowed to take 3 pieces of training equipment, what would they be?
Jujimufu - A "deadlift" bar, a big deadlift jack, and tons of bumper plates.
6. I'm guessing deadlifts are your favorite movement. I've read a bit about your training philosophy, but for those unaware, why bodybuilding and acrobatics/tricking? Must be difficult to blend the two.
Jujimufu - It's difficult to blend the two yes, that's why I'm the only one who can do it like I do at my size. You won't find anyone else my size who can do the moves I can do. And you won't find anyone else who can do the moves I can do who is anywhere near my size. I do them both because I want to!
7. I suppose that's true, and one of the reasons you're so popular. How were you able to achieve the insane ranges of motion you have, and what would you suggest to someone who can barely touch their toes?
Jujimufu - I've been stretching since I was 15, which was when I started training and got the splits relatively early with a pretty simple plan (practice the splits every night for 2 hours until you get them). Imagine if you practiced deadlifting every night for 2 hours for a summer. I'm not talking about reps, sets, and all that programming bullshit, I'm talking about real time, 2 hours of physical work and play combined in an effort to actually "get better" at it. Going off here a bit, but I think people rely on numbers and counting and programs and expect some magic to happen. Those things are just the means elite athletes and trainers use to sort of describe "roughly" what they're doing to obtain some result, it's not magic or precise. Ever. The magic is in the practice. So when people ask me how do I get so flexible and I asked them when was the last time they tried to do the splits and they say "I never have" ... well.. there we go!!! There's the problem!
8. I love that advice; less talking, more doing, something few will ever comprehend. Do you train for strength and aesthetics in a similar manner or does it have more structure?
Jujimufu - I've been doing this so long now it's instinctive and my goals aren't to make gains but maintain what I have as I grow my branding and create value for the fitness industry through entertaining and educating materials. Whether that means video, ebook, or guest appearances. If I was focusing on making some sort of big jump in skill level at this point I'd have to hermit myself back up again like I did the years before I signed up on Instagram. Where was I 2009-2013? Go find some stuff: you won't because it's not there, I was trying to improve, not share. So my training was boring and the cameras were put away.
9. This is the same principle Gary Vaynerchuk, a popular marketer, talks about often. The people you see who are popular today took years of bricklaying without any recognition. What are some of your best feats of strength?
Jujimufu - 585 squat. 635 conventional dead. 605x4 sumo deadlift. 445 front squat. 390 bench press. 255 standing strict press. All raw without belt or suit or knee wraps or anything.
10. That's impressive, but the strict press stands out to me the most. A 255 overhead strict press is mind-boggling. Some of your meals are equally mind-boggling in their size, how does your diet look and what about cheat meals?
Jujimufu - I don't really "cheat" ... I pretty much eat clean by default, I don't need to diet, it's all instinctive at this point. I don't ever feel the urge or temptations, those have been gone for almost a decade. Sometimes I need ketchup or BBQ sauce to actually swallow the foods I cook if they're dry (to get them down), otherwise I'm pretty happy with what we assume is bland. Usually, if I crave something it's something like a hamburger because my cravings are usually for foods that have the three mix of macros, fats, proteins, carbs. Desserts don't have protein, and chicken breasts don't have fat, and nuts don't have many carbs... I guess that's why I could care less about a slice of pizza, pie, cake, a cookie, a soft drink, a bag of mixed nuts, etc. Those foods are deficient in one of the three. Put that in front of me and it'll never tempt me. But put a big, fat hamburger in front of me or some meaty fajitas, and I'll want it, my body will use it, and to me, that's pretty clean anyway. Cleanliness is a daily tally, not a per meal ranking sort of thing. If I'm not eating shit like a lot of people the rest of the day and put tons of vegetable products through my body, then that hamburger is the best thing for me.
11. I like the approach and it compliments the rest of your training and life it seems as well. Keep it simple. For those who would like to be both BIG and mobile, what advice would you give?
Jujimufu - To be both big and mobile you have to train both ways: train to grow, train through a full range of motion every time you train. Being big and flexible is piss easy, the hard part is jumping with all that size! That's the misconception people have of me. The flexibility isn't a problem at my size, it's the acrobatics, now that's tough!!!
12. I know when I started training, there were lots of people that inspired me. Are there any that stick out in your mind who have helped you in your journey?
Jack Lalanne is my hero. His energy, for a guy that didn't need coffee to wake up, and his resilience and persistence and his ... I mean his pure energy, the raw vitality that man possessed, it was like a miracle, but it really wasn't it was just his "way" ... It's something any average/healthy person can achieve, yet it's not as easy as it looks. I bet the guy almost never sat down! It really is something I model my own attitude and way of living based on. The other guy I love is Mark Bell. I've met a lot of guys in the fitness industry this past year, and he's the most genuine and real of the whole bunch. He seemed to actually "care" about people...
13. I've heard that about Mark Bell before but have never had the opportunity to speak with him yet. Thanks again for the interview, where can people find more about you and support the Jujimufu cause?
Follow me on Instagram @jujimufu ... Follow me on YouTube @acrobolix ... and my website acrobolix.com ... Everything is building up, products, ebooks, more videos, flexibility series, you name it. All coming. :-) Thanks for the questions these are fun. :-)
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