MJ will be competing with 46 other delegates from countries around the world at the male pageant's 14th edition happening on October 30, 2022, at Okada Manila in Parañaque City.
Trinh Van Bao of Vietnam, who was hailed Mister International 2018 in February 2019, will crown his successor at the end of the event.
In a statement sent to the press, including PEP.ph (Philippine Entertainment Portal), MJ said he is making sure that he takes a holistic approach in preparing for the pageant.
He said, "I try my best to focus on all aspects. I have been brushing up on general knowledge and current events by reading written literature and listening to podcasts."
If MJ wins the title, he follows in the footsteps of Mariano Perez Flormata Jr. aka Neil Perez who won the title in 2014.
In an exclusive interview with PEP.ph (Philippine Entertainment Portal), MJ admitted that he experienced a lot of challenges during his preparations for the upcoming pageant.
He told PEP.ph, "I think the most challenging part is to make sure that I am at my healthiest and making sure I am getting enough rest despite the busy schedule.
"Most importantly being consistent whilst having two gym sessions a day, eating properly, balancing many things while getting adequate rest.
"But it is all about being proactive and mindful with the things that I spend my energy on for me to be the most confident I can be for the international competition."
Asked about his physical preparations for the pageant, the 23-year-old aspiring actor said he has been targeting areas of his body that he believes need more improvement.
He starts his day with cardio in the morning and ends it with weight training at night.
"I make sure I work out every part of my body, especially my weak parts, so that I can give a better package for the international competition.
"Afterwards, I make sure to meditate or get a massage when possible so that my body is ready for the succeeding days."
Although he did experience some challenges when it comes to his physical preparations, MJ said he was able to adjust quickly to a new routine.
He explained, "I became health conscious when I was in college, and I loved eating unlimited food, dining at buffets, and joining food competitions.
"At one point, I ate 120 chicken wings under 1 hour. I tried balancing that with working out but sometimes felt very sick."
Asked if he has cheat days, MJ answered, "I think it is healthy to have cheat days. But I don’t like using the word cheat since it seems like I’m taking a shortcut to be in shape.
"Cheat days are more like a 'fuel up' so that the next time you work out, you have no excuses but to power through even harder."
He continued, "It shows that you are taking good care of yourself and the things that you put in it, and it teaches discipline and character."
Q&A AND OTHER PREPARATIONS
Aside from the physical aspect, MJ has also been preparing for the most nerve-wracking part of the pageant: the question and answer segment.
But MJ feels confident that he will do well in this portion of the pageant.
He explained, "I become more confident as the days go by.
"I believe being more prepared day by day and making sure that I am doing everything I can to be mindful and be more aware of things that I believe in to make sure everything comes from the core.
"I make sure to read or listen to literature on a day-to-day basis, listen to podcasts, and further my understanding with relevant news and events that not only might possibly be asked during the Q&A, but really be knowledgeable for matters that truly matter."
As for his national costume and suit for the evening wear segment of the pageant, MJ said, "It is under the works as me and my team are conceptualizing the best possible costume that the international male pageant scene has seen.
"But I can guarantee it will showcase the Filipino spirit."
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