Suraqah Shabazz is a new pro that gained his Pro card at Junior Nationals is Chicago last year. He’s competed in three pro shows since and has placed top five in his first two shows. He came into Mile High Pro with a purpose – for the win. At the end of the day, thats what he did. He came out victorious and is on the road to the Mr. Olympia Stage. After the show, we were able to catch up with Shabazz and ask him a few questions for this exclusive interview.
Congratulations on your pro win and your Olympia qualification. It’s been a full year and three shows since you received your pro card. Both shows prior, you placed fourth. What changes did you make to your routine for the MileHigh Pro?
Thanks! A few changes were made heading in (to the qualification). The first thing I changed was my coach. Then I took control of my meal prep so I’d know exactly what was going on with my food. About a month prior to the the Salt City Showdown I decided to try a meal prep company. I asked for cod and they were sending me catfish instead. I didn’t find out until peak week and by that time it was too late tighten back up.
Being a firefighter is very demanding. How do you manage to train and handle such a hectic schedule?
Being a firefighter is very demanding, but so is contest prep. You make time for what you really want so there are a lot of early mornings and late nights. Those last few weeks are always the worst. Energy is low, food cravings are stronger, but I still have to show up to work ready to perform and stay away from all the firehouse snacks. I have to remind myself that this is what I chose to do and judges don’t care for excuses on show day. You just have to be disciplined and make sacrifices.
From what we can see, your kids are your life. How did it feel to have your first pro win with your #1 fans in the audience?
Yes they are, it was an amazing feeling having them there, they’ve seen first hand the time and effort that goes into each show. Me being gone in the morning to do cardio when they wake up to for school and me rushing home from the gym to say prayers and tuck them in at night. Them seeing that hard work pays off means a lot to me.
Was your first pro win all that you imagined?
It really was. It was my time and that morning I could just feel it, I knew it was going to be a good day. Once I won and was able to hug my kids it was just perfect.
What is your game plan going into the O?
My plan going into the O is just try and improve day by day week by week. I’m not satisfied with just qualifying. I’m going to work hard and hopefully make a name for myself my first time there.
What’s your “Go to Cheat”?
My go to cheat meal would be BBQ Chicken pizza from a place here in Chicago called Giordanos.
BE SURE TO FOLLOW SURAQAH SHABAZZ ON INSTAGRAM