Host: Welcome to the Lifelong Wellness podcast where we talked to wellness professionals from very many walks of life from around the world and get their insight into living healthier. I’m your host, Wes Malik. Today’s guest is originally from the South and has worked all across the Eastern board incorporate locations like Washington DC, now making his home in sunny Florida and he has a wonderful transformational story to tell us today. And if you take a look at Lamar Dunn’s pictures on how he has transformed himself, they are truly incredible. Any words that we might say or any description that I might give you verbally does not do justice to what visuals can represent. So, if you get the chance to Google Lamar Dunn before or while listening to this podcast I highly recommend that you do so. Lamar is a very driven person and he’s very passionate about, you know, his fitness and he works with clients, giving them results that not only transform their bodies but also their minds and ultimately their lives for the better. Let’s welcome him to the show. Lamar, welcome to the Lifelong Wellness podcast, how are you doing today?
Lamar: I’m doing great, thanks for having me on.
Host: Now, I don’t ask these questions generally but to have our listeners have context, I need to ask you a couple of personal questions like for example, how old are you right now?
Lamar: I am the beef 42 going on 43 in July.
Host: Wow! And I took a look at your Instagram feed and your pictures and I urge that you check out Lamar Dunn on Instagram and Facebook as well so you get a context as well. But how did you look before the age of 40 or, you know, when you were in your 20s or 30s? Were you a different shape?
Lamar: Oh my gosh. I tell you night and day. My physique in my 40 truly kills my physique in my 20s. I am in, honestly the greatest shape in my life. In my early 20s, honestly early 30s I, you know, never really truly kept myself in pristine shape. You know, I’ve been in the military I had to keep myself in some form or shape going on in my 20s but never truly focus on true nutrition and true cardio the overall holistic of health. So, my physique never really peak, so to speak.
Host: Would you describe yourself as lean or overweight in your 20s and 30s?
Lamar: Oh, yeah. Definitely, in my late 20s, I was definitely overweight. At my highest point in my, I would say, in my mid to early to mid-30s I was pushing close to 265 pounds.
Host: Whoah! No! Are you kidding me?
Lamar: Yes, yes. I’m my heaviest.
Host: Oh, my Lord!
Lamar: Knocking at 300. (laughing)
Host: Okay, so I am very surprised. Again we are on the audio podcast, you must view Lamar Dunn's Instagram page because the appropriate word that comes to mind in Lamar's physique is totally shredded. Is that a good word to use?
Lamar: (laughing) I truly appreciate that feedback and, you know, I’m truly humbled by that because it’s taken a lot of hard work. And one thing about me if you all head over to my page as he mentioned, you literally see, you know, over the years how I transformed. I literally documented my entire fitness journey from going extremely overweight, unhealthy to become in the extreme athlete that I am today and it has not been easy. And I don’t lie to people and say it’s overnight. It has not been easy, it’s been a lot of hard work but it has definitely paid off, and that my physique is the true result.
Host: I get to skip a question here and I'm going to go forward in questioning. When you decided to get in shape, did you go all-in on that day or that week of that month? Or did you gradually get to where you are?
Lamar: Oh, you know, I love that question. So, if I can kind of tell you a little bit about my training it will make more sense and it will kind of put these into context.
Host: Yes, please.
Lamar: So in my mid-30s, I reached the point where I was at the unhealthiest point in my life.
Lamar: I went to the doctor and my doctor basically sat me down and say, “Hey Lamar, your blood pressure’s extremely high”.
Lamar: You are at risk of having a stroke or even a heart attack and you’re at 35 years old.
Lamar: And yes, I’m walking at my blood pressure extremely high. He said, “You’re to the point now your blood pressure is this high and you’re sitting here in the morn with me and you’re calm, you haven’t had work, you haven’t had stress. Just imagine how your blood pressure spikes when you get into a stressful situation and you’re calm now. And that literally opened my eyes like, “Wow, I’m 35”, like, “What do you mean I get to have a stroke at 35?” alright? In my viewpoint, I felt fine, right? I never felt like, you know, that I was at risk of a heart attack or stroke but that just opened my eyes and it was that day forward that I said, “You know what? I have to decide to commit to living healthy for life”. In the past, in my early 20s and 30s, I always had personnel who would keep me in shape only for a season, you know. Spring and summer, okay it’s time to get sweat it, baby, get right ahead and hit the beach, and walk around with your shirt off.
Lamar: And then come wintertime, it’s hibernation mode and you just like to eat cookies and burgers and fries and pizza and you just go on hibernation. So, that’s a continuous cycle for years and years and years that created that unhealthy pattern so where I developed high blood pressure. I was at the risk of, you know, diabetes, at the risk of having a heart attack and I made that decision from that day forward. I said, “I am going to commit to a healthy lifestyle 365 from this day forward. I’m going to go all in, I’m going just commit and it was that day forward and I never looked back”.
Host: Okay all in, there you go, you did it and it kind of like cold turkey but you started your journey like just completely hundred percent motivated. It wasn't, “I’ll start this and I'll do that next month or year and then I’ll do that”.
Host: Okay. So, from, you know, 0° to 180° that's the turn, right?
Lamar: Yes, absolutely.
Host: You said it was hard. It's got to be, man. I mean, again, you put Henry Cavill to shame. That's what you look like, alright? (laughing) That is not, I'm not even being generous. This is the actual hard fact, that’s the hard truth.
Lamar: That’s truly amazing to hear. I appreciate that.
Host: And you said it was hard. That was my third question. Was it hard or easy? How hard was it? I mean, was it hard to the level that, I don't know, did you break down? Did you feel that you had to give up one day? Or…
Lamar: Yes, that’s an excellent question and I’m actually glad you asked that because, you know, I get asked this question quite often. You know, being a personal trainer and fitness coach, myself, I coach people. And what I value is my life story and is a living example of what it takes to be successful health-wise. It wasn't easy and, you know, I always say this, you know, very often on my social media pages and throughout, you know, my various conversation with my clients is every day is not going to be a good day. If what we do on those bad days that’s going to make or break us, right? There are definitely days where I don't feel like eating healthy. There’s definitely a day where I don’t feel like working out and doing cardio, but it’s those days that I have to dig deep to remind myself why I started. And I literally wake up every morning and say, “Do I wanted more than that? Do I want to be healthier? Do I wanted to be a better version of myself?” And I continuously remind myself of that every day and that pushes me and keeps me. And what also drives me is reflecting on how far I’ve come.
Lamar: If there’s a day that I say, “You know I don’t feel like eating healthy, I don’t feel like training”, I often reflect on looking at my before picture like, “Wow! I don’t want to go back to that”.
Lamar: So, that motivates me.
Host: So, that’s your motivation.
Lamar: That’s the motivation.
Host: Now, you work in the, you know, the corporate world.
Host: And, you know, it's tough to for…You got a life, you got kids, you got family, you got friends, you’re waking up really early in the morning, 6:30, you know battling traffic, which is not existent at the moment. Okay, you know, it might go back to, you know, what traffic used to be like, you know, coming home picking up the kids from the Day Care. Usually, life is really tough, even getting out a couple of minutes is really hard and you're so pooped and tired after work and just life. Did you like to take time off? Did you focus less on work and more on your health?
Host: Did you have to balance or how did that happen?
Lamar: Yes. It became all about balance and setting priorities. So I had to make a part to put my health as one of my most important parts of the day, right? So, yes. You know, living in the world and, you know, having a, you know, an executive-level position that I do working in a corporate environment, you know, I have a very stressful job in itself. I mean, I’m fitting in 10, 12-hour a day in the office. Yet again, I still got a focus on my health, right? So, I had to commit. Okay, you know? And, you know, commuting in the DC area, you know, is always can be very hectic because I’m always commuting to DC every single day and traffic could take me anywhere from 1 ½ to 2 hours to get into the office so I had to factor that in, right?
Lamar: So, what that meant for me? I had to adjust that, “Okay, I need to rise a little bit earlier so I can get in and do my morning cardio. I can get up early and do my cardio at home before I shower and head to the office”.
Lamar: And I began to make those kinds of adjustments, right? Because doing cardio in the morning is something about providing that extra clarity. You get to clear your mind, you get the blood pumping, you get your energy flowing.
Lamar: And you kickstart your metabolism to really boost your day.
Lamar: And what I noticed I began to feel so much better and more productive of the day. And then it gave me more energy to get through my day in the office and reminded me, gave me the energy to after work hit the gym and train hard. And I had to really just focus on and prioritize that time whatever it is that I need to commit to that time. You know, and I started, you know, baby steps. And what I always tell people is do not set yourself up for failure saying if you’ve never worked out, if you’ve never really got in shape and never trained to say, “You know what? I’m going to work out seven days a week”. Don’t set yourself up for failure. I started small.
Lamar: I had a very small goal. I said, “You know what? This day forward I want to commit to doing cardio two times a week”. Right?
Host: Okay. Right.
Lamar: Very small. We all can factor in, we all can squeeze in doing, you know, some type of physical activity two times a week.
Host: Yes. That sounds pretty, you know, achievable. That sounds pretty doable, yes.
Lamar: Yes, very doable, right? So what happened was I set that goal and I would kill those two days and guess what? That gives me five other days to play with. Before you know it, two days turned into three.
Lamar: Three turned to four, four turned to five and I begin to build upon that.
Lamar: So, it’s really kind of building blocks to not allow yourself to be overwhelmed. So yes, it was hard, but there are ways you can actually make your life a lot easier, and you can kind of condition yourself to get to where you want to be health-wise and in life.
Host: When you started, you started at the age of 40, correct?
Lamar: So, I originally…When I went all-in I was 35 going on 36 of my dubus formed when I was 35 going on 36, right when I hit almost 36 is when I went all in.
Host: Okay and I'm sure, your exercise regime and your fitness plans must have gradually change month to month, year to year, depending on your physical condition, but did you have help? Did you go it alone or did you go to the gym or did you have an instructor? Did you look at something online or read a book?
Lamar: Yes, actually, yes. In the beginning, I basically began to do my own homework. I want my own research, began to kind of study nutrition, study training platform and I should really begin to get educated on nutrition and training. And it actually inspired me to get certified as a personal trainer and nutritionist and certified as a coach.
Host: Oh, really. So you obtain the knowledge, you actually studied on this. Okay.
Lamar: Yes, absolutely. So again, when I’m all in, I’m all in. I want to actually learn and educate myself. So, I want to kind of learn the buy-in, the science, the nutrition, and kind of really how to build the best version of myself. So, I made that investment of, you know, training, certifications. I thought to take various certification levels, in-room training, and so forth. And I really just kind of, you know, took that and really kind of molded that into my day-to-day lifestyle. And I also decided that I needed to invest in my health and get somebody that is a professional. Somebody who I could hire as my coach, as my trainer to guide me because, you know, I reached the point where I was kind of, you know, I was getting results but something was missing.
Lamar: And for me, I am extremely hard on myself, right? Now, there are pros and cons to that.
Host: Right. (laughing)
Lamar: For me, somebody like me being extremely hard on myself, I tend to push myself way too hard.
Lamar: So, I hired a professional coach and trainer to kind of help guide me with my nutrition, help guide me with my physique, my training. To give me that pointers that, “Hey, Lamar. You’re looking great. You need to increase carbs tomorrow or something” or “You kind of looking flat today” or “You look like you’re working yourself. Let’s cut back on the cardio this week. Let’s only do 2-3 days of cardio versus 5 or 6 you’re currently doing”. So, it’s that extra advice that really helps me. Because it’s actually better to have somebody from the outside looking in versus you’re just kind of looking at yourself. A true professional coach is actually going to be able to limit your physique and give you some extra pointer. So, that is the investment that I make very early on that I truly, truly value, and I continue to this day. I still have a personal trainer and coach that I pay and who still does my nutrition for me. A say this all the time, a trainer needs trainers coaches to need coaches, knows the reason why. (laughing)
Host: Okay, that is awesome because, in your line of work, you actually coach and help people to do the same thing and achieve their best potential.
Host: Now, along with your routine, the motivation that you, you know, you inspired your own self and motivate yourself, you got a little bit of help as well, your programs change throughout months and years, of course, it took you a while and it was hard. Now, you mentioned a couple of minutes ago you focused on your nutrition. How did your eating habits and how did your life change in terms of your fridge? In terms of your kitchen or what you are eating and eating out and eating at home? How did that…?
Lamar: Oh. Oh, my God. And honestly, I have to tell you, people think working out is hard. Working out is not hard.
Lamar: Working out training is an hour, maybe two hours every day. The hard part is the other 22 hours of the day, right? It’s what you’re putting in your mouth. (laughing) So, nutrition is definitely one of the biggest hurdles that people have to overcome and make the biggest adjustment. And I had to adjust, you know, the foods that I bought. I began to, you know, research different foods. I learned to read labels, you know, and one of the things that I've learned over the years very early on is, just because something is canned and labeled as healthy, doesn't always mean healthy. (laughing) Because, you know, if you read the label, it can say healthy snack but it’s 40g of sugar. So, how healthy is that if it has 40g of sugar and is loaded with, you know, carbs. So, learning to read those labels, right, is one of the biggest things that I've learned. And, you know, learning to not eat out as much because when you eat out you get a lot of high sodium and high-fat foods and processed foods. And our bodies don’t really know how to really properly metabolize and digest those types of foods, right? Our body is designed to be optimized on proper fuel and food is fuel. You know those lean meats, lean proteins like, you know, chicken breast, white fish like tilapia, cod, shrimp, things like that. Our body craves and actually breaks down very easily because that’s how our body is designed to and meant to burn off and use food as fuel.
Host: I see.
Lamar: You know, when we have that food when we eat out. That’s why, you know, for example, you go out and eat fast food at McDonald’s or wherever it may be if you notice you feel sluggish. (laughing)
Host: You do.
Lamar: You feel sluggish, yeah. You feel sluggish because of those processed fats and your body is having a hard time burning them off. That was the biggest hurdle that I really had to really kind of overcome because really transforming what I ate, you know, and simple things like…I was a really huge soda drinker.
Lamar: You know, Mountain Dew was my drink.
Lamar: You’re talking about pounding them all day long. (laughing)
Host: Alright. That’s pure sugar right there.
Lamar: Yes, it’s pure sugar. Just imagine, you know, I work in the office so literally I would be in meetings throughout the day and I would literally easily down 4 to 5 of those, you know, throughout the day. And I’m like and I went back and look back like, “Wow. Here I am sitting down here. I’m drinking, you know, 80g of sugar, you know, per Mountain Dew. Like Wow!” (laughing) I’m drinking that! It’s such a waste of calories when you think about it, right?
Host: Yes. It is. Did you go gradually in terms of food or did you outright banned stuff?
Lamar: Yes. So, this is how I did it and I'm a big fan of this and this is kind of high teaching kind of close to my class as well. Well, I’m a big believer in moderation is key. And what I mean by that is I don't believe we should deprive ourselves of certain foods and treats that we love. You know, pizza, you know, burgers, fries, you know, cookies, caping like that, right? But I believe we have to earn those types of meals and do those things in moderation. So, for me in my journey when I decided was, “Okay. You know what? I'm going to commit to eating healthy 6 days a week. On Day 7, I’m going to enjoy a cheat meal whether that is, I want a burger, fries, or pizza, whatever it may be. I’m going to have them on Day 7 because I’ve been eating clean, you know, six days a week and I earned it.” And I begin to kind of build upon that and grow from there. So, it’s really taught me to be consistent, eating healthy, meal prepping. And actually, whenever I feel this I want to have some type of treatment, I know that at the end of the week, I want to be rewarded because I want to be able to enjoy that burger and fries this weekend with no guilt.
Host: Brilliant. We’ve covered, you know, your transformation and your life and it is inspirational, man. (laughing) Just hearing you talking I’m like, “You know what? I can do it, too”. And I kind of believing it that, you know, I’m sure that our listeners will have the same confidence after listening to this podcast.
Lamar: I hope so, yes.
Host: Now, you helped a lot of people daily achieving their goals. You build plans for them, you work with individuals. Now, how do you go about your work? How do you go about building plans to change the physique of people?
Lamar: Yes. Actually, that’s a very good point. So, for me, I am a big believer in building custom plans for my clients, you know. There’s a lot of people out there that just build cookie-cutter plans. What I mean about that is, they give people the same plan regardless of, you know, their body type or their current weight. I believe that everybody is different, everybody responds to different foods. When I take on clients, the first thing I do is sit them down, go over their goals, their objectives, analyze their current weight, their height, and their goals. And I begin to build out a custom nutrition plan tailored towards their goal if it’s to lose body fat if it’s just to drop overall weight in itself or just to lean out or bulk up. And then I design their plans to simply put that client and we go from there and they check in with me weekly and we make adjustments weekly and go from there.
Host: And how do you know that each person has a different plan and how do you tailor that to each person?
Lamar: So, it really comes down to doing my homework, right? So, when clients come in and I have them send me in their current physique, you know, typical front, back, side pictures. And it gives me a good assessment on kind of their current physique and where we need to focus on. You know, some people may have a higher percentage of body fat, which means I need to have a nutrition plan. It’s actually going to drop their body fat down to a certain percentage. And then kind of tweak it, you know, maybe halfway through. It may kind of add fats back because right now your body is beginning to drop fat and sometimes your body’s going to need additional fat to even drop fat even lower. So, you really have to do your homework and do analysis on each client and really kind of tailor that program specifically for their needs. One thing that I notice, you know, very very often and it's very clear, almost kind of across the board. For most of the clients that come on board with me, their biggest problem in nutrition is they do not eat enough.
Lamar: Most clients when I come on board I say, “Well, how many meals are you getting in a day?”
“Oh yeah, Coach, I’m getting in a good solid two, sometimes three”.
I’m like, “Well, that's your problem. You’re not eating enough”. You know, you need to be taking in 5 to 6 meals a day and people are just blown away by that because in their mind they think that the way to lose weight is to starve yourself and only eat twice a day. And that’s really not the case because what happens is when you’re only eating twice a day a lot of times you’re putting your body in starvation mode, right? Because your body
will take in those calories and say, “You know what? You’re not going to feed me for another 12 hours. I’m going to hold on to all these fats, all these carbs because I have to survive.” Your body is going to jump into survival mode so it’s going to hold on to that. Now, you do that in reverse, you fill your body every 2 to 3 hours. What happens is, your body begins to adjust, your metabolism begins to increase because your body begins to burn off and use that food as fuel every 2 to 3 hours and you’re going to start burning it off, your metabolism is going to be fired up, your body fat is going to just start to drop and your body is going to say, “You know what? I want to use this food as fuel I’m going to burn all off because I know you will feed me again in another 2 to 3 hours”.
Lamar: And that’s when that conditioning comes into play. It just takes time for your body to adjust.
Host: Of course it goes without saying those 5 to 6 meals are healthy, you know, they've got a balance to them.
Lamar: Yes. (laughing)
Host: It’s not that you maintain the same food or type of food two times a day or three times a day and just split it apart into five or six. It’s actually changing the food, right?
Lamar: Yes, absolutely. So, you know, you definitely need to focus on, taking in nutritional value foods. Every single meal you should be taking in some kind of quality proteins whether it’s, you know, for example for breakfast, make a nice healthy egg white spinach omelet. That’s a great way to start your day off with some good quality proteins, some good veggies. And, you know, depending on where you are, you may want to add a little bit of oatmeal than to kind of give you some carbs for that day. Again, it depends on the kind of where you are, client-wise, if you want to have carbs in the morning or you want your carbs spread out throughout the day. But yes, every meal you want to make sure you have quality protein, definitely, you want to have proper fruits and vegetables to be part of your day, too. You got to spread those out, you know, pretty evenly throughout the 5 to 6 meals per day.
Host: It's a time where most of the world is in quarantine or locked down and the world is socially distancing because of COVID-19 and the Coronavirus.
Host: And things are returning to some sense of normalcy very very slowly. Where you are in Florida they’re opening up, you know, some areas of the state very carefully and very slowly. And over the next couple of weeks or months, we’ll see things go back to some semblance of normalcy, but around the world every situation is different. And a lot of people can't get to the gym or can’t get out to their classes and are trying to work out at home and it’s a challenge. What advice would you give to those people who need to work out and have this drive? What should they be working out at home? What kind of program should they have at home?
Lamar: Yes. So, that’s just a very good point actually it’s one time that I’m kind of really focusing on for my online class because, you know, literally the world is at home now, right?
Lamar: You know, we no longer have the luxury of being able to travel to the gym and get a good session in. So, my advice to people is to leverage what they have.
Lamar: You can get a great workout literally with just your body, your bodyweight alone. There are many things you can do to get a good workout. You can, you know, if you have a bike or treadmill, get you walking in, get your steps in, walk in the neighborhood, get your miles in, get that cardio going, get your blood pumping. And do simple things like bodyweight exercises like, you know, just bodyweight squats, you know, bodyweight lunges, push-ups, sit-ups, doing those types of exercises and make it fun. Do it like a circuit, right?
Lamar: You know, do push-ups to failure then roll over and do sit-ups to failure.
Lamar: And, you know, then do squats. By the way, squats until muscle failure and just do that, you know, 3 or 4 sets as a circuit. That’s a good way to really get the blood pumping, that’s going to help your condition in and you got to sweat it out. This gives you a good, you know, good tempo, good exercise to get the blood pumping in. It keeps you moving.
Host: So, no need for too much equipment and weights and, you know, pulley stuff and things like that. We can work out at home just with our body weight.
Lamar: Yes, absolutely. And, I mean, again if you have the luxury, if you have a home gym, like if you have, you know, a dumbbell set, a barbell set, absolutely. Leverage that. But a lot of people what they found themselves they didn’t have anything, you know, during this time of pandemic so they left without any dumbbells, and barbells. So, I tell people you can still get a good workout in with your body weight, your body weight alone.
Host: And while a lot of people around the world…Again, it's different for every state, in every country but a lot of people just socially distancing and what we eat when we go to the grocery store has a kind of change. People are going maybe once every two weeks and stocking up at their local Costco, Walmart, you know, fresh foods or whole foods or whatever. And just buying, and just a ton of stuff which is not perishable like a lot of canned stuff because, you know, “Oh, I’m not going to come back to the store for a couple of weeks so I might as well just buy this instead of that”. What should we be looking out for while grocery shopping?
Lamar: Yes. I mean, so I think, you know, during these days of social distancing you want to really want to minimize your exposure, right?
Lamar: So, when we’re grocery shopping my advice is to try, when possible, to buy things in bulk. You know, I’m a huge fan of Costco or Sam’s Club to be able to buy bulk. For example, you can buy, you know, in bulk lean chicken breasts, right?
Lamar: So, you buy lean chicken breast in bulk you take out, you know, a couple of pounds that you’re going to meal prep with, to prep your meals for the next couple of days and the rest you put into your freezer, right?
Lamar: And the same thing for others, you know, different quality protein. You can buy, you know, tilapia, flounder, shrimp, things like that. You can buy it all in bulk. You know, ideally, I prefer fresh vegetables but considering, you know, the days of social distancing you want to minimize your exposure so I recommend, you know, we stock up on canned vegetables like a green bean, whatever it may be, whatever your favorite canned vegetable that you can have to again limit your exposure. I want people to be healthy. I want people to kind of avoid, you know, being exposed.
Host: So, the frozen vegetables and canned vegetables are good? They’re okay?
Lamar: Yes, absolutely. You can definitely get the frozen vegetables, it’s perfectly fine. They still have great nutritional value and frozen vegetables you can get those in bulk as well, throw it all in the freezer. Get them meal prep, take it out, thaw it out or whip it up and keep it nice and fresh. It’s all about how you prepare your food and keep things consistent.
Host: When the schools announced that they would be closing around spring break or after spring break, one of the first things that disappeared from the shelves along with other things, of course, it was the frozen vegetables I found that was gone the quickest and the good ones like the Asian cuts and the California cuts were gone quicker than just normal peas and spinach and cauliflower and stuff. So, it's very important at this time to think about health and there's never been a more conscious approach to people's health and well-being as a national and international consensus. And it’s not the reason that we’re sitting at home so we don't transmit the virus to other people are susceptible because a good, you know, 89, 90%. The statistics are variable, of course, are very able to withstand COVID-19 and Coronavirus. It's a certain very low percentage or a percentage that falls victim to it. And the research, early research shows that you've got to have strong immunity. If you suffer from autoimmune diseases or you have immunity issues, you are susceptible to it. Now, increasing your immunity is possible and these people like you know to do that. What foods, you know, how can we…Okay, I can add this for a fact that I’ve been telling this on every public forum. If you’re a smoker you've got to stop smoking right away, anything to do affecting your lungs is not great for the Coronavirus or COVID-19. So, you got to stop that immediately if you want to raise your immunity. What other things can we do, food-wise, health-wise, to shield ourselves from COVID- 19?
Lamar: So, actually that is a very very good point and like you mentioned, you know this is a national worldwide crisis and the entire world has been basically put on notice and poise on health has been catapulted forward and is and literally is in everybody’s eyes now and everybody’s concerned. So, there are definitely things that we can do to put ourselves in better posture health-wise as you know, you know, this COVID-19 even though there’s a lot of things that we don't know about this particular virus, there are things that we do know. You know, having things like, you know, heart health, high blood pressure, diabetes, those type of people who have those types of illnesses are really at high risk.
Host: Yes. True.
Lamar: So, those things are things that we can do a better job of controlling. As I started up, you know, kind of podcast, I mentioned my personal situation where I was that person. I have high blood pressure, I have a risk of diabetes. So, I transform my life and got myself in a situation where I am no longer in that high-risk state because I no longer have high blood pressure because I’ve got my nutritional points. So my blood pressure is outstanding, my cholesterol levels are outstanding and my heart health is in a good situation. So, what we can do to work today should truly focus on getting healthy, building a better lifestyle for the cells daily focusing on eating quality nutritional foods, and make sure you have, you know, your blood pressure is stabilized and you’re focusing on your heart health. You're focusing on staying active, keeping the blood flowing. And these are all things that we can do, you know, as a world to really get ourselves in a situation to be more healthy. You know, eating healthier, you know, dropping as an example, right? You know, you can drop your blood pressure a few points by simply losing a couple of pounds.
Lamar: Oh, yes. As an example, every pound that you lose you have the potential to lower your blood pressure by 2 or 3 points alone just by dropping, you know, a pound of body weight. So, as things like that, that we can do to get us kind of out of that, you know, high-risk zone. You know, better blood pressure, heart health, increasing our blood health. These are things that we should be focusing on to really become a healthier community, a healthier world altogether.
Host: You have the certifications and you know the knowledge behind nutrition and fitness. I've read a lot about intermittent fasting these days. Is that something that you’ve tried or done?
Lamar: (laughing) Oh, man. I have to be honest with you.
Lamar: I am not a fan of intermittent fasting and let me tell you why.
Host: Tell me.
Lamar: I am a fan of coming out with a nutritional, nutrition plan that you can stick with for life.
Host: I see.
Lamar: For me, it’s not realistic to do intermittent fasting for a long period of time.
Lamar: So, I believe you’re better off having a plan that you can stick to for life. We all have come with a nutritional plan where we can have our 5 to 6 quality meals throughout the day. And we don’t have to suffer due to the starvation period of only eating once every 12 hours. To me, that does not put us in a good health situation. Now, I know, you know, there’s a lot of publicity behind those typical goals, what I call them those bad diets, but I just really don't support them, I don’t really promote them because I believe, you know, you got to have things that you can have a balance of things you can stick to for life. You know, in the same thing for, just want to give you an example, what I mean by that is, people would have to say, “Oh, you know, I’m going to a no-carb diet”.
Lamar: Yes, I mean, you will definitely get results. You would definitely drop, you know, bodyweight pretty quickly on a no-carb diet but you cannot really say you’re never going to take on any carbs your entire life. So, it’s better to have a nutritional plan to where you kind of do some form of a carb cycle, right? You know, that you can actually take in quality carbs throughout the day. You have days where you have low carbs, days where you have high carbs but there are days where you just don't have any carb. To me, for a standard period of time that’s not realistic because what happens is people follow these bad diets and as an example, a no-carb diet, and they’ll not eat carbs for, you know, 3 weeks, 4 weeks, or a month.
Lamar: Eventually, their body is going to hit a wall and then they’ll just go bananas and they go and want to eat all the carbs they see. (laughing) It kind of defeats the purpose.
Host: I could testify to that feeling. That’s for sure that happens. That does happen. (laughing)
Lamar: Yes, yes. It’s not a good feeling. (laughing)
Host: Quick question. Good carbs, bad carbs? What are the good ones? What are the bad ones that we should stay away from?
Lamar: Yes. So, good carbs, I always tell people to focus on like good quality like white rice, brown rice is excellent. Potatoes, red potatoes, white potatoes, those are excellent carbs.
Lamar: Oatmeal, grits, things like that are definitely high-quality carbohydrates. You have to be careful with some of the bread that you eat because it’s going to break down into glucose and, you know, they will just really depends on kind of where you are, but definitely, those are carb I really want to kind of focus on and try to get my clients to really get consistent. The meal plan actually includes those good types of carbs in their daily regimens.
Host: And what do you stay away from?
Lamar: So, I try to stay away from any type of processed carbohydrates. Definitely stay away from like chips, things to that nature. So, you really want to focus on really kind of all-natural foods because your body knows how to break down natural produce. Your body knows how to break down sweet potatoes, which is actually another good carb you have. You know, sweet potatoes, red potatoes, white rice, things that make your body knows how to break those down efficiently. So, again it comes down to the number of carbs though that you need to take in. So, that is going to be the key. And that’s where good culture nutrition is going to help you, breaking down the amount of carb you should be taking in per meal is going to be very very crucial.
Host: Lamar, last question, people come up to you and ask all these questions all the time and you answer them, you educate people about nutrition and fitness daily. What other fads do people ask you about that, you know, we shouldn’t be thinking about it?
Lamar: (laughing) Actually, that’s a very very good point. I’m glad you ask that question because I have to tell you.
Lamar: One of my biggest concerns throughout this whole pandemic right now because unfortunately, I see people almost all social media just bend eating, sitting on a couch, watching Netflix, eating Oreo, eating chips, and just letting their selves go.
Lamar: One of my biggest fear or concerns is after this pandemic breaks and the world opens back up, people are going to fall for these fad diets.
Lamar: There’s going to be advertisers for these fad diets, “Oh, you know, take this pill. You’ll lose 15 pounds in 10 days” or “Get on this lemon water diet for 14 days and all you got to do is…”
Host: Cleansing. Right.
Lamar: Yes, yes. And they’re going to fall for that. They’re going to put themselves in a bad situation because they’re going to try to make up for the eight weeks of unhealthy eating and try to get those results back in 2 weeks. They’re really going to hurt themselves in the long run because it’s really, really extremely hard on their bodies to do those types of cleansing types of diets where you just literally sip on lemon water. I see people just, ‘Oh, I’m just going to do a water diet and I’m just going to sip on lemons”. I’m like, that’s not healthy, you know? And that’s kind of one of my biggest concerns and one of my biggest fears is after this pandemic seeing people fall for that.
Host: Awesome advice. Lamar, where can we follow you, on Facebook, Instagram, your websites, where can we get in touch with you?
Lamar: Awesome. So, definitely you can find me on Instagram and Facebook @lamardunnfitness. @lamardunnfitness on both Facebook and Instagram. You can also find me on YouTube. Lamardunnfitness, on YouTube as well. My website is www.staytruefit.com. Definitely, definitely keep in touch. Hit me up anytime. You can always shoot me a DM on either IG or Facebook and I truly, truly try to get back to as many people as I can because I’m a true fan of fitness, I’m a true fan of helping others. And if I could help and I always had this as a motto, “If I had the ability to change just one person’s life per day, then my journey is worth it. My run is worth it”. So, definitely, I definitely look forward to hanging with you, guys. And my team reminds you guys, stay true to your goals and never quit.
Host: Lamar, thank you so much for being on the Lifelong Wellness podcast. You truly give us a lot to think about and a lot to be motivated about. So, thank you very much for that.
Lamar: Awesome, awesome. Glad to have this time and look forward to continuing down with this journey and have the world go back into a better health situation.