In 2022, Chinedu Andrew Obiekea, a.k.a. “Andrew Jacked,” burst onto the major bodybuilding scene. During his International Federation of Bodybuilding and Fitness (IFBB) Pro League rookie year, the Nigerian athlete made waves by winning the 2022 Texas Pro and Arnold Classic UK. His performances were so notable, bodybuilding legends like Ken “Flex” Wheeler believed him to be the future of the sport. When Jacked successfully overcame established powers like former 212 Olympia champion (2019) Kamal Elgargni along the way and also notched an eighth-place finish at his first-ever Mr. Olympia in December 2022, a bright long-term outlook seemed inevitable.
With 2023 already in full swing, Jacked appears deadset on fulfilling his proposed “destiny.”
During a Jan. 15, 2023, RxMuscle podcast episode, former professional bodybuilder Dave Palumbo revealed Jacked is currently being trained by the esteemed Chris “Psycho” Lewis. The trainer is perhaps most well-known for his work with the late Shawn Rhoden — who defeated the titanic then-reigning seven-time champion, Phil Heath, to win the 2018 Mr. Olympia. Lewis will now use his guidance to help Jacked maximize his upcoming 2023 Arnold Classic (AC) appearance.
As the next steps of Jacked’s IFBB Pro League career unfold, fellow coach Chris Aceto didn’t mince his words. He believes working with Lewis could unlock a lot of potential in Jacked’s overall plans and deliver a top-notch physique.
“I think it’s a game-changer because I remember seeing a picture of Andrew Jacked, I think he was in Flex Lewis’ gym,” Aceto said. “It was before he had competed in one of the shows that he won. And he looked good, you know what I mean? But you take a real look, you might say, ‘God, he might be way better than he actually looks here because he’s very good in proportions. He’s got the narrow waist, narrow hips, big thighs, wide shoulders.’”
As for the bodybuilders Jacked will have to overcome at the 2023 AC, there will assuredly be no shortage of elite competitors. At the time of this article’s publication, former champions William Bonac (2018, 2020) and Nick Walker (2021) are confirmed to compete in the Mar. 2-5 contest in Columbus, OH. The defending champion, Brandon Curry, may unsurprisingly confirm his rostered status at the 2023 AC in the coming weeks.
In early 2023, relative Men’s Open newcomers in Derek Lunsford, Blessing Awodibu, and Michal “Križo” Križánek all announced formal plans to skip the AC in the interest of rest while focusing their energies on improved individual performances at the 2023 Olympia in November.
Many expect great competitive achievements from Jacked in the months and even years ahead. It’ll take time and a lot of stringent effort, but he already appears to be taking proactive steps in confirming people’s faith in his innate talent.
Featured image: @andrewjacked on Instagram
About Robert Zeglinski
Robert is a seasoned and adept editor and writer with a keen, passionate penchant for the writing craft. He’s been a leader in newsrooms such as SB Nation, USA TODAY, and WBBM Newsradio, with various other content and art production teams, and first made a name for himself in his hometown of Chicago. When not knee-deep in research or lost in a stream of consciousness for a thorough piece, you can find Robert inhaling yet another novel, journaling his heart out, or playing with his Shiba Inu, Maximus (Max, for short).