- Try to get most of your meals from a plant based diet (i.e. eat a MAXIMUM percentage of fruits and veggies - preferably in their raw state).
- Limit grain intake. (I've been accused of being a grainitarian in the past. Looking over my daily eating caused me to agree; try it, you'll be surprised).
- All sweet treats should be a whole food, FRUIT source. (Sometimes we think we want a chocolate or candy, but really it's a carb thing. A piece of fruit will serve two purposes - 1) get rid of your carb craving. 2) leaving you feeling refreshed and energized. Other sources of sugar can only do one).
- Get over counting grams of protein - it's a myth. Relax, as long as you are following #1, your body will take care of itself. Protein is only ONE of many nutrients that our body need on a daily basis. Tofu only has very few of these (yet it's high in protein), but fruits and veggies have so much more.
- Don't listen to FAD FOOD hypes. Udo's oil, VEGA, vitamin pill, "magic"/superfoods all of these are so expensive and really cannot replace continual MAXIMUM fruit and veggie intake. I take no vitamins, and I am still a healthy, energetic person. I am not pale, scary, green, deathly skinny, or malnourished.
- Pay attention to how you feel after you eat certain foods. When I eat fruits and veggies, I feel amazing and energized. After a yummy meal at a delicious vegan restaurant, I feel like sitting on the couch. Why? Fake chicken, fried foods, too many grains, possible over eating was it worth the bad feeling? I believe in "treating" myself, but the more and more I listen to my body, the more I wonder really if eating like this is treating myself in any way. I like to run long distances. It is a treat to find a new trail, get lost, and/or go on an adventure. Eating crappy foods limits my ability to "treat" myself in this other way. If I had to choose between a delicious bowl of vegan ice cream and an awesome scenic run, the run would ALWAYS win.
Wednesday, June 16, 2010
Friday, June 4, 2010
A long, long time ago in a land far far way (i.e. the midwest), I ate meat and cheese. Fast forward to today, roughly 20 years later, and meat and cheese are my foes, veggies and fruits are my friends, and running gives me great pleasure. So how does one go from being carnivorous to being herbalicious?
Much harder. Just getting in the number of calories alone on a whole food vegan diet is hard. I think it is important to note that my diet (whether or not meat is included) is predominately comprised of fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, oils and alternative (gluten-free) grains and beans. I am gluten-intolerant and don’t eat soy. So when I was vegan, it was harder to get in the calories I needed.
Okay, so, let me diffuse this a little bit, because I need to put in in terms of veganism in general, then its prevalence in ultrarunners. So, only 1% of the US population is said to be (or label themselves) vegan. Now lets compound that with the number of people who run ultramarathons. In the eyes of the general public, vegan-ultramarathoners look doubly crazy. Lets put this in perspective by quoting from a triathlete I know (Ironman finisher), "