Hard work pays off for first-ever Ageless Male Superbods winner Johan Ludovica

By Joyce Reyes-Aguila | Lead photo courtesy of Century Tuna Superbods

“Believe… because you can.”

A few days after becoming the male grand winner of the recently concluded Century Tuna Superbods Ageless Competition, Johann Ludovica captioned two photos on his Instagram account with these words. The images compared his body before and after the 46-day transformation towards becoming fitter.

The pictures may make his efforts look so easy, but in truth, the 42-year old has been working hard to stay in shape for over two decades. Ludovica was once a skinny 19-year old who struggled about the way he looked. “I felt so ugly,” he says. “I couldn’t seem to gain weight. I literally forced myself to eat more until it worked. I reached 200 pounds in one year.” While he achieved his goal, he understood his body deserved better.

“I decided to start losing a few pounds,” he continues. “I was fascinated with Arnold Schwarzenegger’s physique and worked on getting the [form] I’ve always dreamed of.”

Twenty-three years since committing to his fitness goals, Ludovica remains relentless. Despite his hectic work schedule as a trainer for a business process outsourcing firm, he puts in at least two workout sessions in the gym during weekdays and plays basketball on weekends. “Good planning and scheduling play an important role. I have been working out for more than 20 years—I guess my body simply looks for it, even if I’m tired.”

When Ludovica chanced upon the advertisement for the nationwide search for the Century Superbods competition’s Ageless Category, he knew he could qualify. The category is aimed at inspiring anyone, regardless of age, to give value to physical fitness and wellness.

“I prepared myself mentally,” says Ludovica, who won alongside Ageless Female grand winner Angel Jones. “I had to remain tough despite the pessimism I was feeling.” He intensified his workout sessions and subscribed to a diet that helped him surpass the activities that challenged the Superbods contestants physically and mentally.

During finals night, Ludovica was asked what motivates him to keep fit at his age. “Basically the look and feeling [of being fit],” he told the audience. “Every time I look at myself in the mirror, I get so inspired. I see the development. When you are fit and healthy, you’re going to feel it. You’re going to be able to do a lot of things [and there are] lots of benefits. You get to enjoy life even more.”

He admits he was prepared to lose despite being included in the top five finalists. “It was already an awesome achievement, more than what anybody could ask for,” he recalls thinking. “When I was announced as the male (ageless) grand winner, I felt like crying. It’s just an amazing, unexplainable feeling. I definitely didn’t expect to win.

“What I enjoyed the most is being friends with extraordinary people, including athletes, models, fitness champions, beauty queens who are very humble and kind,” he says. To pay it forward, he answers health and fitness questions he receives on social media, aside from posting inspiring photos to motivate others.

“I’m dreaming of bigger avenues such as television shows, commercials, and publications to promote my ‘road to ageless’ advocacy, I am so amazed to learn that people find me inspiring. It’s about time that fit and healthy middle-aged men get recognized.”