Vegan Athlete

I have written this to debunk the ‘protein myth’ but mainly talk about how I fuel myself with plants.

It annoys me so much hearing how much of “this and that” the vegan ‘diet’ lacks. That will also be the first and last time I will mention the word ‘diet’. Being vegan is not a diet. Vegan is a lifestyle, a way of living, a way we choose to eat and live cruelty-free.

I train Muay Thai Boxing in Thailand. I train 6 days per week, two 2-hour Muay Thai sessions per day, along with 2 runs – that is 5 hours of training PER DAY. Whilst training I have never felt weak, never felt under-nourished or felt like I was lacking anything, simply because… I am not.

A typical training day for me includes,

  • 5.30 am 5k Run
  • 7.30 am 2 hour Muay Thai class
  • 3 pm 2km run or sprints
  • 4 pm 2 hour Muay thai class

A typical food day for me includes,

  • Breakfast normally consists of oats, I have a huge bowl of overnight oats, including dates, peanut butter and banana topped with soy yogurt.

overnight oats for blog_edited

  • Snacks in between training are usually energy balls/ or ‘protein’ bars ( all homemade)cinnamon and date power balls
  • After training I have a huge evening meal, normally something like jackfruit wraps with hummus and vegetables

jackfruit

I eat big portions because I don’t count calories- I count nutrients.

I work my body hard physically so I like to give it the fuel it deserves after training sessions – this also helps with recovery.

Everyone seems so caught up in a vegans protein intake whilst forgetting plants, oats and grains are all stacked with first-hand protein alongside other goodness. My morning meal, usually overnight oats, for instance, packs a whopping 30 grams of protein, and aside from the protein, oats have a well-balanced nutrient composition- they are a great source of carbs and fiber and are loaded with vitamins and minerals ( such as iron, magnesium and vitamin B6 which are all essential for a healthy, functioning body). My listed evening meal- jackfruit and hummus wraps, jackfruit is known as the ‘jack of all fruits’ as a rich source of vitamins, minerals, carbs, electrolytes, fiber, fat and protein, basically everything I need after a training session. Paired with hummus, which is made with chickpeas I have a well-balanced, ‘high protein’ meal. Chickpeas are also great for inflammation and digestion. My evening meal is around 28g of protein. The general guidelines for protein ‘requirements’ for an average adult is said to be 1g per KG of body weight, so as a 50KG female, and without listing my snacks etc per day I  am hitting my recommendations and then some!

Admittedly, as a vegan we do tend to eat larger portions, or perhaps eat more frequently,  but as our food is plant-based, it digests a lot quicker and leaves us without the after-dinner bloated feeling.

I have been vegan for nearly 2 years now and I have honestly never felt better or been in better physical shape.

My training is extreme and I am not recommending you follow what I do at all. I am simply making the point that you can train as much as I do and still fuel yourself through plant-based living. So not only are you doing many other wonders for animals, the planet and your health, you can rest assured you can exercise and still provide your body with what it needs and more being vegan.

‘Not only can you survive eating plant-based, you can thrive!’ source: www.whatthehealth.com

According to Harvard Medical School, “studies are confirming the health benefits of meat-free eating. Nowadays, plant-based eating is recognized as not only nutritionally sufficient but also as a way to reduce the risk for many chronic illnesses.”  source: https://www.health.harvard.edu/staying-healthy/becoming-a-vegetarian

Patrick Baboumian – Powerlifter 

Patrik_Baboumian___7_-3

“This is a message to all those out there who think that you need animal products to be fit and strong. Almost two years after becoming vegan I am stronger than ever before and I am still improving day by day. Don’t listen to those self proclaimed nutrition gurus and the supplement industry trying to tell you that you need meat, eggs and dairy to get enough protein. There are plenty of plant-based protein sources and your body is going to thank you for stopping feeding it with dead-food. Go vegan and feel the power! http://www.wholefoodplantbasedrd.com