Feast to Beast: Big Dru’s Journey from 10,000 Calories Of Fast Food Per Day to Clean Bulking | The Mike O’Hearn Show

Big Dru details his journey from 10,000 calories of fast food every day to a leaner and cleaner bulk diet while maintaining his mass monster size

In a recent episode of The Mike O’Hearn Show, host Mike O’Hearn sat down with Dru Borden, widely known as “Big Dru,” to delve into his transformative journey in the world of bodybuilding. At 41 years old, standing at an impressive 6’3″ and weighing a solid 280 pounds of pure muscle, Big Dru shared insights from his earlier years, his diet choices, and the pivotal shift towards a healthier approach to bodybuilding.

Big Dru has always put focus on being a mass monster – but the way upon which he achieves that physique has changed significantly today compared to his younger years. In his 20s, Big Dru would eat anything and do anything to be as massive as possible. This led to a diet consisting of mostly fast food, greasy burgers, and a lot of snacks.

Today, Big Dru doesn’t even touch fast food and has cut back on his calories significantly. That being said, he’s still a powerful 280 pounds and looks like a mass monster freak. But the big difference is that he feels 100% better and knows that his body is much more healthy compared to his younger years.

That’s why on this week’s podcast episode, Mike O’Hearn sits down with Big Dru to compare his “eat anything” dirty bulk years to his current clean eating lifestyle. Let’s jump into it.


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A post shared by Dru (@bigdru616)

The “Balls to the Wall” Attitude

Big Dru reminisced about his youth, spending time with the legendary Rich Piana, and adopting a “balls to the wall” attitude towards bodybuilding. Even before connecting with Rich, he lived a lifestyle focused on getting big at any cost, including a daily diet of McDonald’s.

By 2006, at his heaviest of 305 pounds, Big Dru was consuming a whopping 10,000 calories daily, emphasizing dirty bulking with burgers, snacks, greasy foods, and Oreos. However, he later realized the toll this took on his health – difficulty digesting, constant breathlessness, and an overall sense of discomfort.

Before Big Dru started changing his diet and becoming healthier – he had no idea that the way he felt was unhealthy. It was only after realizing how good he could feel, that he realized how bad he felt during his dirty bulking years.

“You don’t realize that you feel great, until you actually feel great.”

– Big Dru

The Shift to Health-Conscious Bodybuilding

Big Dru understands that a high calorie intake is still required to become a mass monster. But now Dru advises aspiring bodybuilders to prioritize cleaner meal options while taking in massive calories. For example, instead of ordering fast food, cook your own burger and sides.

With that being said, Big Dru also understands that eating healthy is more expensive. A $10 fast food meal full of thousands of calories is quite enticing to a young person with little income who is trying to become a mass monster.

While acknowledging the cost difference, Dru stresses the importance of investing in one’s quality of life and future health. You only live one life – and there are certainly ways to find small tactics and changes to eat healthier within your budget.

In his mid-30s, Big Dru took a significant turn by getting regular bloodwork done. Discovering that his testosterone levels were half of what they should be, he shifted from indiscriminate bulking to tailoring his diet and routine based on blood test results. He now maintains a weight of 280 pounds, emphasizing the importance of feeling good, not just looking like a “freak.”

“I don’t want to just look like a freak, I want to feel good also.”

– Big Dru

Regular Bloodwork and Stress Reduction

Mike O’Hearn has discussed at length on this podcast about the health benefits of routine bloodwork. However, Big Dru also highlights the value of regular bloodwork in alleviating stress associated with the bodybuilding lifestyle. Knowing your yearly blood pressure, cholesterol, and testosterone levels allows for a more informed and less worrisome approach.

Instead of worrying about what may happen to you and your health – regular bloodwork helps put your overall health trajectory in perspective. This is especially true while you are customizing your diet and training to best suit your goals for gaining muscle or shredding fat.


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A post shared by Dru (@bigdru616)

The Biggest Changes Big Dru Made To His Diet (While Still Staying Massive)

So what exactly did Big Dru change in his diet after going through bloodwork and reflecting on his health? For Dru, a large part of feeling better was fixing his digestive issues. Instead of always feeling bloated and lethargic – he wanted to feel energetic and have a better quality of life while also staying muscular.

Addressing digestive issues, Big Dru made changes like eliminating meat from his breakfast and avoiding dietary fat. Dru no longer consumes any meat before his training session – leaving items like lean steak for later in the day.

The Big Dru of today can’t even imagine eating fast food and snacks like he did during his younger years. In fact, he has adapted to his new diet so well, if he cheats with something greasy or high in sodium, he instantly feels the negative effects.

Stressing individuality in nutrition, Mike O’Hearn also emphasizes the need to explore various strategies, as what works for one may not work for another. Listening to Big Dru’s methods may be extremely helpful for some individuals. But for others it may not work at all.

While the core tenets of nutrition and health are universal – there are a wide variety of ways your body can react to certain nutrients and foods. That’s why Mike finds his podcast so fascinating – he can bring in various individuals with different diet and training routines so that aspiring athletes can test different methods and see what works for them.

Wrap Up

The conversation between Mike O’Hearn and Big Dru not only provides a captivating insight into the world of bodybuilding but also serves as a valuable resource for enthusiasts looking to balance mass gains with long-term health. The key takeaway? It’s not just about the destination; it’s about the journey towards a healthier, stronger, and more informed version of oneself.

You can watch the full episode of The Mike O’Hearn Show above. And don’t forget to check back every Friday for new episodes only on the Generation Iron Fitness Network or wherever podcasts are downloaded.

Derek Dufour has been managing all digital operations on the Generation Iron Network for over six years. He currently manages a team of editors, writers, and designers to provide up-to-date content across the GI Network.