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Everything posted by VeganBadass_CO

  1. Hi! Interesting question. How to lose muscle as opposed to non-functional body weight (i.e. fat). Do you know generally what your BMI is? Are you already pretty lean, just muscular? Might suppose (just guessing really) that if you went light on proteins, but kept up your normal routine, you'd consume some muscle that way? Curious to see what others might suggest...
  2. Yum! Or this... Sports drinks have become more and more popular as advertising campaigns promote Gatorade, Powerade, and the like as alternatives to water. However, Gatorade and other sports drinks contain harmful dyes which have been linked to Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder and other health problems. A 35-year study, conducted on children aged 3-4 and 8-9, found that artificial coloring perpetuated the severity of chronic ADHD and other behavioral problems. Blue No. 1, a common dye found in Gatorade, is especially potent. Not only does it turn your tongue blue, but researchers have speculated it may cause temporary discoloration of your body tissue and brain. Red No. 40 and Yellow No. 5 are also used in Gatorade and have been linked to numerous health problems. Most medical professionals agree that Gatorade has high health risks and low nutritional value. Removing harmful dyes would have no adverse effect on the taste of Gatorade and would make the product much safer, particularly for children. The only purpose for adding dye to Gatorade is aesthetic. Please ask Gatorade to remove harmful dyes from their products.
  3. first....welcome!!! second...define 'high protein'? Could borrow from 'Shred It!' and ask you in your understanding, what roles protein plays in health and why it's so focused/important? We are MASSIVELY marketed on protein. Most of us get WAY more than we need, and deprive or bodies of other much needed nutrients that all play a part in fitness, and body building. Get out of balance between carbs, fats, proteins and the micronutrients and things are not optimized at all. Even with your schedule, you will need to (and can do so on both a low budget and without much cooking -- can even do it as a raw vegan if you prefer!) eat 4-6 times a day for optimal results. Not 4-6 meals, but meal, snack, meal, snack, etc. with content based on what you just did or what you are going to do (workout wise). If you have access to most fruits (apples, bananas, berries, etc.) and veg (spinach, kale, cucumbers, onions, etc.) and just get some bulk grains (oats, quinoa, etc.) and some pastas with some tomatoes we can make you a meal plan that not only will more than meet your needs, but get you plenty of proteins/carbs/fats/vitamins/minerals and also cook up easy and make tasty, easy leftovers eaten hot or cold! So start out with what your goals are, and where you currently are...we can go from there!
  4. Definitely pick up Shred it! by Robert Cheeke. Helps to align your fitness goals to your nutrition needs. All plant-based whole foods. Thrive Fitness by Brandon Brazier is another good series. And of course lots of good info on here too!
  5. IMO...sports drinks mostly sugar, low nutritional density for the calories, and the chemicals behind the unnecessary random florescent colors should be avoided too. Really? The red, yellow, green, purple coloring serves no purpose other than to get you to injest unneeded (and unknown) chemicals. Better to munch before/during workouts. Fruit, veg, low-processed nutrient bar. After 2 years, if not seeing the results you want, you need to start from the beginning, describing what and how much you're currently eating. If maintaining status quo, either not working out right or not eating right/enough. I had similar problem, just had to tweat what and when I was eating relative to workouts and such...
  6. So have to ask, what is the goal and the objective of only eating 2-3x a day? Goes counter to a lot of experts out there. More often should be eating something like 5-6x a day, both to keep your body fueled and keep metabolism cranking. I would bet you'd start feeling hunger pains after breakfast and before lunch arrives. There don't seem to be any plants/veg in your diet? Assuming the pasta and rice are just plain, add in tons of veggies (peppers, onions, spinach with everything). 1500 cals for a day sounds WAY low too. Have you calculated your BMR which will tell you how many calories you're body consumes just 'existing' and doing literally nothing? Then calculate your Harris-Benedict # to tweak your inputs to align with your goals (lose weight, tone up/lean up, build muscle). I wouldn't suggest adding empty calories in oils just to up your fat macro # either. Should be able to make some small ingredient changes to your foods to meet your needs. Nutrients in general don't act alone but in pairs and combinations with each other and your body just makes it all work to fit its needs. This is why in large part supplements can be misleading given the concentration of vitamin this or that without the magic that comes from the whole food. So, standing by to help you out. First up, a few questions: 1) what is your goal/objective? 2) where are you currently relative to that goal? 3) current meal plan and why it's not working and leading to the 2-3 times a day meal plan? Don't worry, just need to know where we are and where we're headed to help you out!
  7. tons of veg, quinoa for a few. With a variety of plants in your diet, you should get more than enough proteins. Qunioa is a great one. Fiber, complete profile and mixes great with veg. cook up some peppers, onions, toss in some spinach, some kale, then add quinoa and water, cook per directions. Oh, and season to taste. I often use cumin, garlic, pepper, or toss in some chipotles. Tomatos or salsa. Makes a great leftover too!
  8. welcome back to the lifestyle!! Brazier's books are really good. Combined with Whole/China Study, a bit of Mike Dolce thrown in and of course I'm about 1/2 through the new Shred It! book. I like to think of myself as a living, walking advert for whole-foods, plant based lifestyle especially around those my age and even younger who are like "what the hell is this guy doing!?!?!?!"... :
  9. Great advice!! Just takes a little re-learning....
  10. Hi! Welcome and congrats on the weightloss and lifestyle change! Do know that you should expect to need some tweaks and changes to your foods as you progress on the fitness path. So you say you're a total newb in this area, but don't worry, start slow and grow just like we all do. First up, suggest you find and write down your top goals. They should be achievable and measurable. Get a journal because you'll want to capture not only where you are at the start, but also log your progress, your struggles and track your progress. I'd recommend taking some before pictures of you both standing in natural relaxed poses (front, back, sides, etc.) and maybe some flexing pics too. Then get out a measuring tape and measure your main areas...shoulders, chest, waist, hips, biceps, quads (thighs). Write ALL that down. You can repeat in 90 days just to see where your progress has been and where you're struggling still. Next, need to just get started. If you're totally new to working out, good idea to start with the basics. These can include: - cardio: start with walking, as briskly as you can, pick a good goal and then push to do 1% better each week. If you have a way to measure distance, try to map out a 1 mile distance. Can be around the block, can be a down-and-back loop. Time yourself. If that's easy, after a few times try upping the distance/laps. You want to go briskly to get your heart and breathing rates up. - cardio pt 2: Now add in some other things, jumping jacks for example, run in place. Some things you can have as a backup when the weather is bad. Also, these things you can mix into your other exercises to raise and maintain the intensity. - body weight training: lots of things you can do without any equipment at all just using your body weight. Make a list down a piece of paper and you should be able to track your reps for several days in columns on the paper. Start out with basics. I'll list a sample set for you: standard pushups: wide pushups: military pushups: close pushups: chair squats: ski squats: close-wide squats: chair dips (front grip): chair dips (side grip): overhand pullups (if you have a bar to use somewhere) close-grip overhand pullups: reverse grip pullups: wide-grip overhand pullups: .... A few pointers: for pushups, you may not be able to any or many. That's okay. Start out trying, on your toes, when you can't do any more, you can drop to your knees. Still keep your hips inline with your shoulders. Down and up. I like to keep track in my journals by using () around the reps done on my knees. So for example, standard pushups I might write down 10 (3) meaning I did 10 on my toes, and finished off with 3 on my knees. Likewise with pullups. Might not be able to do any completely. But you can put a chair underneath so you can use your feet to help you. You'll want to struggle with the pull ups, so don't make it too easy! Planking: Another basic one, great for strengthening your core. Here too you can start on your knees for the first week or so. Position is like a pushup, but instead of supporting your weight on your hands, you will be on your toes and elbows. Elbows under your shoulders, stay on your toes, keep your back straight, don't let your hips sag down. First week or so, your goal is 60 seconds. You might only get 15 or 30 seconds at first. That's okay. Write it down. Keep track. The time will go up. Yoga: If you don't have any yoga videos and/or can't take classes, you should be able to find some nice workouts online, like on youtube. Might think that this is just stretching and easy, but some of the most intense body sculpting workouts I've done have been yoga. Look for both poses and for balance/stretch routines. Lots of warrior positions, upward/downward dog, and similar will absolutely define, shape and strengthen your shoulders, arms, back legs, and core. Plus will help with your overall balance and flexibility. Other things you can add in: crunches bicycles/flutter kicks squat kicks All this you can do with no equipment. And as you get stronger you can just keep upping the reps until failure (can't do any more reps). Eventually you should be able to score some basic weights to add resistance to the exercises. Let me know if you have other questions. Will be back to share more if I can think of other things to get you started.
  11. hi there! First, please please please don't sweat this. Yes, at first it will seem like you spend HOURS in the grocery store reading labels (like looking for all the sneaky places they slip whey in but don't label it as containing milk/dairy). And yes, it does get easier and more intuitive once you re-learn foods and your body needs. You'll soon be able to go out to a restaurant, order up some plant-based goodness and not feel like you've fallen off the wagon. In fact, even if there isn't something specifically plant-based on the menu, you'll be able to eyeball up the various ingredients and then as the wait person to check with chef about whipping you up something with A, B, and C in it. Second, I would suggest you start with a couple of your fav recipes and veganize them. Part of the balancing of the 70/15/15 is that this is over a whole day. So, if you swing a bit high for one meal, then compensate with the next. I would also suggest that when in doubt, just go with more veggies and macros will sort themselves out. As long as you're not adding oils into your foods, there is a difference in naturally occuring fats (like in avocados) and various cooking oils, etc. Likewise, there's a big difference between added sugar and table sugar to what is naturally occurring sugar in fruits. For the things that occur naturally, your body does a great job of extracting what it needs and removing the rest. For example, an easy 'go to' for me just uses whatever is on hand. Chop up some pepper/onion, toss in mushrooms if you like and/or have them, can put in some faux meat if you like, spice it up to your liking, cook for a bit, then toss in quinoa and the right amount of water...cook till quinoa is done, makes a quick left-over meal too. Tasty in the AM on some quality toast. Chipotle peppers add some nice flavor. Along with getting more familiar with the nutritional make up of various things, you will get more creative and confident in just making stuff with whatever you have on hand.
  12. Glad you made the switch back to the plant-based lifestyle! Not sure I have a good answer for you. A variety of plants, fruits, grains, nuts, beans should be covering all your bases. Quinoa for example has complete amino profile. I think you mostly need to deprogram your thinking about all macros, all the time and trust in the foods. A caloric sufficient diet from a variety of sources should more than cover your nutritional needs. Though do some reading and if you hit a plateau or start to regress in your training (strength, size, weight, etc.) then some tweaks are needed. The magic of the whole foods is that the sum is greater than the parts. Let the nutrients work together, not in isolation. in general, we're inundated with marketing and mis-information. Walk the grocery store and notice the latest push for PROTEIN in pretty much every food -- you'd think we had a protein deficiency epidemic in the USA. More like most of us are overloading on it. Guess where the extra protein goes if we get too much and don't filter/pee it out -- body STORES it.
  13. Hi Sandy! Glad to hear you're making positive changes. Switching to a plant-based whole foods diet can reverse your pre-diabetes condition, and I'd say even so if you remain vegetarian and not go all in vegan. You'll probably already know, drop all processed foods. White rice, breads, etc. though in your diet that may already be the case. Happy to help so if you've questions please ask away!
  14. IMO...all hype and marketing. High Carb vs low carb/high protein (aka Akins aka paelo), similar to the marketing scheme for high protein in the american diet. Pretty much everyone gets TOO MUCH protein... now to your question, and from my perspective. I eat what I want, drink what I want. Don't really pay much attention to the macros (e.g. carb count) but I do pay attention to the SOURCE of the carbs. Plant-based whole foods eater all the time. Avoid (most of the time) highly processed foods. And yeah, I know if I get on the beer a bit (vegan only beer of course!), or at various times the Oreo's my options become to either A) work harder to compensate for the surplus and low nutritional value carbs, or B) accept that in a few weeks time will start to see a bit more flab particularly along my back. Want to get/stay lean and mean, then avoid the crap. Or have a little crap and either work it off or accept the consequences. Body needs carbs for fuel. Low carb anything is out of balance with what you need. Sure there are optimal carb sources and crappy ones, choose based on your goals.
  15. Hi Sunami! Great name btw... Thought of a couple ways to approach this, one was to suggest you pick up a book or 2 for some background (Shred It! by Robert Cheeke, any of the Thrive books from Branden Brazier, etc.). Or alternatively, list out some of your typical meals per day and we can help you plant-base them. You'll have no trouble getting the nutrients you need to resume your powerlifting goals and should tone-up/drop the extra weight along the way. As a society, we are WAY oversold on the amounts of various macros we need or don't need (calories, gms fat, gms protein, carbs....). Likewise, supplimentation is big business too...... So, share some of what a typical day is like for you and we can go from there.... Cool?
  16. Hi there! Been a busy 2015 but getting back engaged with the forums again! Will give you some of my opinions/advice too. Don't fret about the ups/downs, happens to everyone to some degree -- only human. So as I read, you've the awesome combined goals of both losing the extra non-functioning weight and firming/strenthening up the rest. Complimentary goals so good for you. A few immediate things, and some suggestions... 1) generally we're WAY over sold on the amount of protein we need. Eat a calorie sufficient, plant-based whole foods diet with a variety of plants, fruits, nuts, beans and you'll get more than enough protein. With the over-emphasis on tons of products in the grocery store you'd think we had a raging protein deficiency crisis in the USA....the opposite is true. Most people get way more than they need, and surprise -- too much can get stored as fat in your body. 2) Cals: Couple of things here, first, you should go and check out your BMR which given your specific stats will tell you how many calories you need per day just doing nothing...just existing. Then check out your Harris-Benedict # and align with your activity levels and goals. THEN, once you get a good vector, I'd suggest taking some before pics and taking measurements of all the right areas. As your body changes, the scale is only 1 tool in tracking your progress. How your clothes fit, how you look in the mirror are beneficial too. Losing non-functioning weight and replacing it with muscle can give false progress reporting just by using the scale. You could stay the same weight be really transform your body. Lastly, all calories are NOT equal in their nutritional make up and the micro-nutrients contained with in. So, to better help, how about sharing what a typical days foods are? You should eat like 5-6x a day, breakfast, snack, lunch, snack, dinner, snack, sorta grazing all day long. But time and size your meals/snacks based on either what you just did, or what you are just about to do (relative to physical activities)... Look forward to your response...
  17. Hi! Welcome! Been away for a bit, but getting back engaged with the Vegan Bodybuilding group!!!!
  18. Hi! I had once upon a time, persistent shoulder pain, what I learned.....may or may not be totally correct, but what I was told and what I did to fix it. 1) Shoulder not so much designed as a heavy duty joint. LOTS of muscles in play at the shoulder, and not working ALL of them equally can create imbalance. 2) was doing all the usual popular exercises (shoulder press, bench press, bit of shoulder shrugs, shoulder flies...... 3) fix was to get on the cables, lighter weight, and do these exercises (not sure their correct name but will describe... - adjust cables so that the handle is at parallel height with right arm at 90 degree angle, standing with cable rack on the right side. - keep arm at 90 degree angle, elbow tight to ribs, rotate the shoulder joint as pulling the weight across your body. - repeat, but standing with weight stack on the left, rotating the shoulder in the opposite direction.... - repeat on left side. took some time, but have never had pain since then. But also note, I do not bench press any more. Bodyweight exercises, or use dumbells. Variety of exercises on the shoulder joint. Was told that shoulder not designed as a heavy lift joint (again, can't vouch for accuracy, Robert would be better for expert advice there). Going heavy on the weights makes strength of the whole shoulder matter...
  19. Hi! Sorry for your struggles. Thanks for posting up what it is you typically eat when you've tried going vegan. That helps! A few observations/questions: 1) your listed foods looks pretty complete, though I can't tell from the list a general calorie count per day? What are your goals? 2) that's a LONG list of supplements that with a balanced, plant-based diet you should not need, except for possible exception of B-complex and the Vit D you listed. Generally, supplements aren't very bio-absorbable, they need other components to make them effective. You should be getting plenty of your micro nutrients directly from the foods you're eating. 3) Curious what is your typical diet when you're not vegan? Trying to figure out where fatigue might be coming from. If typical diet is high in processed carbs/foods, a sugar crash might not be too unexpected about 3 weeks in. I think it will take about 4-6 weeks for your body to adjust to the new normal. Maybe need to power through the 4th week and see how you feel then. Kinda like detoxing I think. 4) not sure about your 20gm protein drink in the morning? What is the source? Generally, I'd ditch that. Add in a spoon full of peanut butter to your steel cut oats. I make mine as breakfast bowl most mornings. Cinnamon, 1/2 rolled oats, 1/2 steel cut, fresh fruit (berries, strawberries, raisins, whatever you have handy) serving of peanut butter. Might be helpful to have better idea of your stats? Age, height, weight, and goals. You should also be watching your calorie count as you make the transition. It's possible you're not eating enough. Do some online searches for BMR calculators and your Harris Benedict numbers to see how much food you need just to exist, and then how much you need to reach your goals. Will be standing by !!!
  20. Hi there! Welcome! Been a busy month so far. There's lots of good advice to be had so fire away!!
  21. Hi! Welcome to the lifestyle and to the forum. Thinking about your back pain. Could it be your core is not up to par? Try adding planking to your daily routine, you can start on your knees if it really hurts your back. Keep your body straight. Hold for 30 seconds at first, in a few days you should be able to up your time to 45 sec....then 60...so on? Build up strength and stability in your core will help with lots of things.
  22. Cool...maybe to keep it fresh throw in some max rep body weight exercises while you're breathing and heart rate is up....max rep speed pushups (standard, narrow, clap, military, wide) and if you run past something to do pullups on or knock out some dips...better!
  23. A fellow fighter!!!! Nice!!! Welcome!!! Where abouts on East Coast?
  24. Whatsup David! Hope you heal up fast! Overall, I agree with your approach as its easier and sustainable. Just eat a variety of veg, include the rest of the spectrum from beans to nuts and seeds. Leaning more and more towards organic everything where possible...slowly getting there...better for me, better for the environment. And I just watch the scale and the mirror. Dropping weight or not gaining (whatever your goal is), make small adjustment up or down, then reassess. Leaning up too much in the mirror or maybe packing on a bit too much in places like the middle/back then need to look not so much the quantities of foods, but the sources. Maybe adjust when you're fueling up with what. In general. - Eat good quality earth grown foods. - ditch processed foods, white breads/rice/etc. - eat for what you just did, or what you're about to do (gonna work hard -- fuel up with balanced nutrition), just worked hard, replenish what you burned (carbs, sugars, etc.) and be sure to hit up good protein sources (beans, tofu, grains/quinoa, etc.).
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