Top 5 Nutrition Tips for Vegan Athletes and Gym Buffs

Posted by on July 2, 2015 | Permalink

Going vegan isn’t for the meek and mild! It’s for the fierce, fit and ready to fight! Well, actually that’s not true. Vegan is for everyone! The point we’re trying make is that a plant-based diet can provide athletes, or those who are hitting the gym hard, with all the protein, complex carbohydrates, and other nutrients needed to perform at top-notch levels—without the artery-clogging cholesterol and saturated fats found in meat, eggs, and dairy products.

Don’t believe us? Check out these super-fit, plant-fuelled athletes:

  • 2009 Barclaycard World Freerun Championship winner, Tim Shieff, credits a vegan diet with clearing up his tendonitis. Check out our amazing collaboration with Tim here.
  • Germany’s strongest man, Patrik Baboumian, holds world records for log lifting and overhead beer keg lifts – all thanks to plant power.
  • After going vegan, ultra-marathon runner Scott Jurek won some of the toughest races in the world, including the 135-mile Badwater Ultramarathon in Death Valley and the notorious Hardrock 100.
  • Rich Roll went from being an overweight 40-year-old with a heart condition to becoming an Ultraman triathlete winner and one of the fittest men in the world and credits much of his success to switching to a vegan diet.
  • Tennis superstars Venus and Serena Williams – who have won every Grand Slam title out there – are both vegans.

If you want to improve your performance in sport or if you are looking to take your workouts to the next level try giving these top nutrition tips a go:

  1. Nutritionists recommend that most of the calories athletes consume come from complex carbohydrates. While refined carbohydrates like sugar and white bread should be avoided, complex carbs are critical for fuelling your muscles with energy in a sustained way. Great choices are whole-wheat breads and pastas, cereals, brown rice, quinoa, and fruits and vegetables.
  2. Protein can be found in abundance in foods like beans, nuts, tofu, whole grains, veggie burgers, and other meat substitutes. Although vegans can easily get plenty of protein through these foods, if you’re looking for a post-workout boost try a vegan protein bar, one of our favourites is Trek Bars, or toss some frozen fruit and a vegan protein supplement into a blender for a delicious smoothie. Here’s some of our favourite high-protein foods:
  3. A bit of fat in your diet is important, and the fats in plant foods like avocados, vegetable and olive oils, nuts, and seeds tend to be much healthier than the artery-clogging fats found in most animal products.
  4. Adding a multivitamin and a vitamin B12 supplement to your daily diet is a good idea for all athletes.
  5. Any trainer will tell you that the more calories you burn, the more fuel you need. Vegan foods tend to be very nutrient-dense, but they are somewhat less calorie-dense than animal products (which is great when for weight loss). So eat plenty of your favourite vegan dishes.

Got any good nutrition advice for vegan athletes or gym buffs? Please leave it in the comments!