When perusing Miss USA Asya Branch‘s Instagram, or simply looking at her compete in the competition back in October as Miss Mississippi, the impressive 23-year-old looks like she’s someone who frequently hits the cardio machines at the gym or rocks a SoulCycle bike. However, on the HollywoodLife Podcast, the Miss USA 2020 winner revealed she actually “hates cardio” and was reminded of such when she began to prepare for the Miss Universe 2021 competition. “I have ran the stairs a couple of times [in the apartment building], but then I realized I’ve always hated cardio. And so then I was like, that was not the right move,” Asya laughed. “I do my ab workouts. I have some dumbbells. I’m just trying to stay on track, but I’m not going to lie, I have good genetics!”
She continued, “I eat pretty clean, naturally, but I do order in…” Her roommate, the current Miss Universe, Zozibini Tunzi, jumped in to give Asya some credit when it comes to her pageant prep. “She’s not me! I do it everyday!” the South African beauty laughed. “I don’t have to compete! She’s been working out a bunch, though. She’s been doing good.”
Asya admitted that she hasn’t asked her roomie for much advice about the competition, because she feels as though it would be unfair to her fellow competitors. “I’m probably one of the most honest and fair people…I’ve never asked her a single question about it,” she said. “I wouldn’t feel right… If I did, I would feel like I was cheating.”
However, Zozibini, on the podcast, gave advice for Asya and all of the Miss Universe contestants to hear from the current titleholder. “I always tell people that you’ve done the work already — you’ve won your national pageant. You’ve been working really hard, and you have all the tools that you need within you, so you don’t need any outside validation from anyone,” she explained.
Zozi continued, “I think once you get to location, you see all the girls — you start freaking out. You see all the fan pages — you start freaking out and it’s like, no, you have done everything you deserve to be there. Nobody let you in by the back door. You deserve to be there just as much as everyone else, so don’t look at everyone as competition.”
The Miss Universe 2021 pageant takes place on May 16th at the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Hollywood, Florida. Tune in at 8 PM ET on FYI to watch Zozibini Tunzi crown her successor!