Written by Donat a/k/a The Vegan Hubby
I found the perfect diet for the physique that I always wanted, which is a vegan diet. Let’s talk about the physical or bodily image aspect of vegan weightlifting since I think it’s a very important one.
There is so much that you can do physically on a vegan diet. Are there limits? I think so, sure. If you want to take steroids and look like characters from the 90’s cartoon “Street Sharks”, I think a vegan diet is the last of your worries. In fact, there is virtually zero chance that someone like that would ever visit this blog so let’s stop talking about them.
Like I said before, my goal was always to be fit, strong and what I deem to be physically attractive. I always wanted to have the body and physique that women find attractive, not what guys do. From a young age I got the sense that guys love extremes and tend to go over the top with most things, including physical image. I thought that the average guy had a warped view of what looked good. Bigger always seemed to be better, regardless of any other factors. This does make sense on a crude evolutionary level because the male needs to be dominant and physically intimidating to his rival males. I also noticed that women generally had a more moderate view on the male body that included looking healthy. This also makes sense on an evolutionary level because the woman needs someone who is both strong AND healthy to live long enough to take care of babies and be the provider. A healthy look is sexy to woman because it will help their offspring to survive. A competitive male on the other hand will not be intimidated by how healthy another male looks or how clear his skin is. Having biceps the size of grapefruits and squatting 6 plates will likely impress a guy, but highly unlikely to impress most women (unless you’re one of the girls from the Jersey Shore, but is that what you’re really going for? Honestly.)
With the knowledge that we no longer have to revert to our caveman ancestry, I chose to go the healthy route. How many people do I need to intimidate on a daily basis in a modern society? Thankfully little to none since we evolved past that (or so one would hope at least). I preferred to have that healthy but definitely fit look and luckily for me so did the healthy and fit women such as my gorgeous wife. Additionally, my body tended to naturally go toward that direction anyway so I had everything going for me to go lean and everything against me to going “huge”.
So this is where a vegan diet comes into the picture. Vegan food is amazing at giving you the healthy and lean look instead of the puffy and bulky look that results from eating the typical high meat, high salt diet. Meat does bulk you up, but at the expense of making you look puffy, untoned and in my opinion ugly. Meat and dairy also give your skin a lot of acne and a pack a ton of saturated fat and cholesterol. So between the high blood pressure that results from lifting heavy weights and the clogged arteries, you are just about guaranteeing yourself a lot of health problems sooner than later. The processed foods like hot dogs and cured meats also contain more salt in a serving or two than you should have in an entire day, which leads to a bloated and puffy look since salt retains water in your body. The “glorious weight gains” that you might get are just from water weight, not muscle or strength growth. Too much salt also spikes your blood pressure and can lead to kidney stones (from what I understand kidney stone removal is one of the most painful procedures out there and some women say that they would give birth 10 times over before they rather pass kidney stones again- think about that). So many people seem to think that these problems are in the distant future of 50-60 years away, but in reality I know way too many cases of heart attacks in their 30’s and dead in their 50’s. I don’t know about you, but that doesn’t seem very far away to me.
Vegan foods on the other hand bind to water, lower cholesterol and provide the macro and micro nutrients that are completely lacking in a typical meat eating diet. Eating a vegan diet, my muscles are not sore as long as they used to be, allowing me to get back to the gym sooner. My skin is clearer than ever before and I have lots of energy to work out. Good food also leads to good sleep, which is crucial for weightlifting since your body builds muscle and repairs tissues during sleep. A vegan diet is perfect for those who want to have a clean, cut and muscular look. You just need to up the calories if you want to gain weight and bulk up or eat fewer to lose fat and slim down.
Remember, diet is anywhere from 60-80% of weightlifting and only 20-40% is the actual gym. Clean up the diet and you will achieve significantly more than you ever thought you could!