By OMONIYI SALAUDEEN
Looking at his lithe and athletic stature, you could possibly hazard a guess as to what kind of lifestyle the renowned legal icon, Yusuf Ali (SAN), lives. With the world literally under his feet, he could avoid to stuff his system with all sorts of junks available in the numerous fast food outlets and then carry the burden of a potbelly for the rest of his life as most affluent in this part of the world do. But he chose to live a structured lifestyle that gives him all the energies he deploys to make success of his career.
Call him a workaholic, you won’t be wrong. He declared in an interview with Sunday Sun: “I am not a socialite. I just as a matter of duty attend functions. I try to live a structured life. I don’t stay in the house in the afternoon. I go to work every day, except when I am not in town. When I leave my office, I go straight to my house. When I get home, I take my dinner and interact with the people in the house for a minimum of one hour before I go up to my room. I think that is enough.”
Despite the demands of his job, he tries as much as possible to balance it up with fitness exercise that results in his sporty physique. “I have gym in my house, both in Abuja and Ilorin. And in any hotel I stay, the first thing I look for after my room is the gym. I use most available gym equipment anywhere. I carry little weight here and there. I engage in aerobics also. Except on public holidays, I spend an average of 40 minutes in the gym before I go to work. If it is on weekend or public holiday, I spend longer time in the gym; sometimes one and a half hours or two hours. I do all sorts of exercises just to keep fit,” he said.
And on a lighter mood, he spices up his leisure hour with music of his choice especially when he is in his car. “I listen to music, especially when I am in the car. In fact, that is the only time I listen to music throughout the day. I have some old musicians’ songs like Haruna Ishola, Ayinla Omowura, Ebenezer Obey, Sunny Ade, Orlando Owo, Bob Marley and so on.”
While Ali enjoys listening to music as a mean of relaxation, he doesn’t hide his disdain for watching movies. The reason, according to him, is due to lack of patience to pay attention to the scenes in the movies. His words: “I listen to all sorts of music, but I don’t watch films. I am sure, I have not watched any film in the last 25 years. I don’t have the patience to watch film. I go to bed early and rise early. Most times, I wake up before 5 o’clock and go to the mosque. By around six, I am done and I go to gym. Because of the kind of life I live, like sitting long, and all that, it is very important for one to do exercise. It keeps you fit. You hardly get tired when you get to work. You have a lot of strength to do a lot of work”, he stressed.
Being a healthy conscious person, Ali further added that: “I eat in moderation. My favourite food is beans. I can eat it three times a day, 7 days a week. This is because it is probably the healthiest food we have in Africa. I also eat swallow and rice, but I eat little.”
All this combined with his genetic makeup, he says, explains his lean frame. “My appearance runs in the family. My father and mother are just as I am”, he maintained.