In 2017, Comedian Dan LaMorte was with a group of comics at the Big Sky Comedy Festival in Montana weighing 350 pounds as they entered a pizzeria. At the time, LaMorte was a morbidly obese 23-year-old who once endured a botched Tommy John surgery (ulnar collateral ligament reconstruction) in college and did not believe it possible for him to do push-ups. In a post on his Instagram, LaMorte said that he decided in that pizzeria that he needed to make a change — so he ordered a salad.
Flash forward to the present day: LaMorte is a 26-year-old long-distance runner who weighs 179 pounds. He’s also inspired his parents to embark on their own fitness journeys and, in addition to his successful comedy career, has aspirations of earning his personal trainer certification.
Check out these transformation photos below that LaMorte shared on his Instagram page. Each photo was taken a year apart from each other since he started his weight loss journey:
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Nowhere close to finished but god damn am I thrilled with the foundation I’ve laid for myself.
He told his 42.8 thousand Twitter followers that when he first started his weight loss journey, he “didn’t tell anyone…just put [his] head down and started working.”
To celebrate his 26th birthday on Jan. 19, 2021, LaMorte set out to run 26 miles, which equates to just about a full marathon (26.2 miles) — a distance he has done before. Unfortunately, as he is still in the last leg of recovery from a foot injury that required seven sessions of shockwave therapy, he only managed 20.09 miles. Still, this distance is a vast improvement to where his cardio used to be years ago and a significant increase from the 13.2 miles he jogged just a week earlier.
LaMorte set the goal of obtaining his personal training certification in 2021 because “it seems like the right move.” His newfound passion for fitness and massive weight cut not only led to his own physical transformation, improvements in mental health, and a desire to train others, but it also inspired his parents. His father celebrated his 53rd birthday by performing 1,000 push-ups in preparation for his first Spartan Race — the obstacle course races of varying distances.
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LaMorte’s future fitness plan involves continuing his weight loss and performing his first-ever ultra marathon on Feb. 27, 2021. His base miles ran per week have been pretty high in preparation. In September 2020, he was running 50 to 60 miles per week. Upon recognizing a weakness in his quad strength, LaMorte told BarBend that he “started throwing a weighted vest into the mix.” That 50-pound weight vest is also equipped during push-ups and core work these days.
To switch up his training, LaMorte plans to hike. “I’m going to start hiking [Mt. Tammany] with the weighted vest on. I figure that’s a great option to preserve my feet and also strengthen the quads.” According to LaMorte, the path on Mt. Tammany provides a 5.4-mile hiking loop with roughly 1,300 feet of gain.
As the saying goes, “abs are built in the kitchen.” In addition to LaMorte’s significant increase in cardio work, push-ups, and core training, he has made large changes to his diet. Nowadays, he is on an entirely plant-based diet.
There’s enough science for me to trust plants offer [a] healing quality…I need to do all I can to stay healthy.
For those who may be in a similar position that LaMorte once was, the comedian reveals that a major pitfall was convincing himself that he couldn’t do something as simple as push-ups even. Now, he can bust out 400 push-ups in a day despite his previously injured elbow.
The biggest lies are the ones we tell ourselves.
Featured image from Dan LaMorte’s Instagram page: @danlamorte