Shaka Smith Fitness Model
Shaka Smith is a fitness model, hollywood actor and a certified personal trainer.
Location: Hollywood, CA
How did you get started with fitness and training?
I have always lead an active lifestyle – I started swimming competitively by the age of 8 and playing water polo at the age of 12 which I continued into college.
In college, strength training was part of our team regimen and that’s when I began training in the gym.
Where does your motivation come from?
When you’ve always been active, when you get sedentary and start to feel like you’ve lost your fitness edge, you feel it.
I guess you can say I am addicted to the feeling of being in shape and feeling healthy.
As a fitness competitor, I am also motivated to bring my best physique to the stage. Having a set goal like a competition where I know my physique will be critiqued is big when it comes to the motivation department. No one wants to step on stage bring anything less than their best.
What’s your current training philosophy?
I’ve always been big on daily full body workouts employing light weights and heavy reps. Time under tension principles governs a lot of what I do. I like to keep my rest times short and often superset so I am constantly moving in the gym.
What workout routine has worked best for you?
No one workout has worked best – I find constantly switching up my routine to keep my body guessing has been the best element of my training.
I do have a few go-to exercises that I can always on rely on to keep me lean and stage ready year round; squats, kettlebell swings, and burpees. I always hit 100 reps for each exercise – depending on the weight I choose it can vary from 4×25, 2 x 50, 1 x 100 etc.
What does your diet consist of?
I have slowly been leaning towards a more vegan diet, with the hope in 2 years I can be completely vegan. I’ve moved away from red meat and rely on fish a lot more. I don’t mind grains but generally don’t have them daily.
For the most part, I try to get all my carbohydrates from vegetables & fruit.
- Breakfast: Egg white omelet, with asparagus, peppers, and vegan chorizo
- Snack: Grapefruit
- Lunch: Salmon/Tilapia w steamed cabbage and carrots
- Snack: Apple
- Dinner: Salmon/Tilapia w peppers & onions
- Snack: Handful of Almonds w dark chocolate morsels
Do you stay lean all year round or do you bulk and cut?
I stay lean year round. As a fitness model, it is important that I can be ready to shoot at a moment’s notice.
When I have bulked, I did a clean bulk and remained lean throughout.
I use vegan Shakeology, especially when I’m on the go. It’s a protein shake filled with phytonutrients, antioxidants, fiber, prebiotics and digestive enzymes.
If you had to pick only 3 exercises, what would they be and why?
- Squats: Working legs gives you a great pump and raises the body’s testosterone. Having strong legs also helps me with my primary forms of cardio, running, swimming, rowing, and stairs.
- Kettlebell Swings: These are so effective at burning calories and are fairly low impact. Research has shown that a 20 minute kettlebell workout is equivalent to running a mile at a 6 minute pace.
- Burpees: I just love these. I’m a huge fan of pushups and who doesn’t like jumping up and down continuously?! These always challenge me and get my heart rate up and work my entire body – its more of a love/hate relationship but they are effective!
Three tips you’d give to someone who’s trying to reach their goal physique?
- Be Patient – change takes time and is product of consistency over a long period of time. As long as you’re patient it will be easier to stick to your regimen.
- Surround yourself with motivators. Whether its online or friends in your life, it really helps to have those around you who support your goals and motivate you to achieve them. I’ve seen too many people fall of track because of friends or family who for some reason didn’t support or even plain ridiculed their attempt to better their health and physique.
- Have fun. Do what you know needs to be done, but don’t beat yourself up over a missed workout or a meal that wasn’t as healthy as you would like. Allow yourself room to fall, and as long as you’re having fun, getting back up is a bit easier.
“Nothing in this world can take the place of persistence. Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful people with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education will not; the world is full of educated derelicts. Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent. The slogan “press on” has solved and always will solve the problems of the human race” –Woodrow Wilson