Dino Thompson-Sarmiento, Contributor
Christmas came early for me this year as I spent time interviewing spectacular fitness model, trainer, and December’s Playgirl Man of the Month Trevor Adams. He is captivating in every way; his physique would make Michelangelo forget David, yet his kindness would please Mother Teresa.
The 31-year-old is from Texas where everything is bigger and better … and Adams doesn’t disappoint. His beginnings were modest and troubled by family financial challenges. Growing up, he attended 13 schools in all, which severed his ability to connect with folks and put a wrench in achieving scholastic success. His father battled alcoholism and his only sibling is mentally challenged.
However, Adams managed to carve a career using his brawn and charming demeanor. He has graced countless magazine covers and is a prized trainer for many in Texas. I can only imagine how long the waiting list is. So now, I pass along my holiday treat to you in this candid interview.
Trevor, when did you come out as gay and what challenges did you confront?
I knew I was gay while growing up. My family was conservative, but not from a religious standpoint —more of a “what would people say” type of thing. It was best for me it to keep to myself. Once I moved out, I met folks that were more liberal and I felt comfortable being me. However, I don’t like labels. I think the word ‘gay’ has been punished. Many men have had same-sex experiences and it doesn’t mean you are gay as it is defined in our society.
What do you say to young men out there who are questioning their sexuality?
Be yourself, eventually the world will evolve. Yet, I caution teens from coming out. I don’t think it is safe for them. I would suggest taking a “don’t ask, don’t tell” type of attitude.
That’s a bold statement. Many folks would disagree. Isn’t it best to be who you are and let people meet the real you, and perhaps break the chain of ignorance and discrimination?
I think they need to come out when they feel it is safe. Some kids are lucky and attend progressive/liberal schools with a good environment. Rejection is tough and bullying even worse. I say be discreet; you have your entire adult life to be who you are. My concerns are with the kids.
Let’s switch gears and talk about fitness. What advice can you give men in their 30s and 40s who may have a little pooch that they can’t get rid of?
If you are carrying excess baggage it’s really simple. You are eating too much and not exercising enough. You need to become familiar with calorie counting. Try to eat at home or get an app on your smart phone that counts for you. Be aware of what is going in to your body. Reduce bread, pastas, and ice cream consumption. One of the biggest mistakes is making dinner your heaviest meal. Eat carbs early in the day. Also staying active is important to keep your metabolism going. It naturally begins to slow as you age. Some caffeine is good as it keeps your metabolic rate high. I suggest sports drinks and coffee.
Where should a person start?
It is important that you realize that it is a process. You should never just go from 4,000 calories and switch to celery sticks. If you were consuming 4,000 calories make your goal 3,600 for the next couple of weeks until you eventually meet your desired calorie intake. Remember, exercising will allow you to have the little cheat meal without guilt. Something else to keep in mind is that the bigger the muscle, the more calories you burn. What about losing weight in target areas?
That is a myth. People think because they are exercising one specific area they will lose fat in that area. Well, that is not the way it works. That fat will start to burn first in the area where you store the most fat. Something else to keep in mind is that genetics play a big part in the way you look and the way your muscles build.
What are your thoughts on cardio?
I am not a fan of cardio. I think you should do five minutes to warm up and spend the rest of the time in strength training. For those who say you aren’t working your heart, I say then you aren’t strength training properly.
Yay! (Who wants to buy my elliptical machine?) But looking at your body, I won’t argue.
I feel that running, particularly, is counterproductive and dangerous. The older you get, the less strain you want to put on your joints. I often watch folks doing excessive heavy lifting and they are doing so much damage to their bodies just to keep up with the guy next to them. There is no need to do that.
What about alcohol? What drink would keep the fat away?
None is the best policy, but red wine has benefits if consumed in moderation. You should not drink when eating your meals, as the alcohol blocks proper nutrition absorption, plus your inhibitions go down and then you’ll be eating dessert too.
Trevor, tell me a little bit about what feeds your soul. For example, what charities tug at your heart?
The Trevor Project is close to my heart. I want everyone to know that there is help just a phone call away at the Trevor lifeline at 1-866-488-7386. I am also passionate about animals and encourage folks to donate to The Humane Society and the ASPCA.
One last question. I heard about your encounter with a bottle of hair coloring. Can you elaborate?
(Laughter) Yes, I can. It was back during Hurricane Katrina. I happened to be near the Gulf Coast and I was bored because the city was shut down. I decided it would be a great idea to dye my pubic area. Apparently I left the dye on too long and I ended up with second degree burns. I was bedridden for three weeks and even got bed sores on my back because I was literally unable to move. It was definitely my worst injury ever and I warn folks not to do it.
Trevor, thank you so much and congratulations on being named Playgirl Man of the Month, and good luck on the Man of the Year selection.