On February 27th I decided to take the Vegan Challenge. I cleansed my body by following a whole food plant based diet for 30 days. Here are my thoughts and results…
Before the diet started, I was concerned about my energy, or lack of, during workouts. It was a great surprise to learn that I actually had more energy during my workouts! Not only were my workouts just as efficient (if not more) on this diet, I also had more energy during the day! This was pleasantly surprising because I was working out in the morning and studying late at night (CPA exam), I had more energy with only 6 or less hours of sleep a night (“not having time” should never be an excuse). The high energy levels are most likely a result of the high amounts of complex carbs (brown rice, vegetables, etc.) I consumed.
I never felt hungry or the uncontrollable desire to eat meat. Although, there were plenty of times I missed biting into a big chunk of steak. Most of my protein came from vegan protein powders (mostly soy based), beans, quinoa and the new Vegan Shakeology.
During this cleanse, I lost about 5 pounds of fat. I started the challenge at 167 pounds and lost about 3-4% body fat! Let me add that I started Insanity: The Asylum a week to two weeks after I started the Vegan Cleanse. Before the diet, I figured with the massive amounts of cardio from Insanity, and decrease in protein from the diet, I would lose muscle. The opposite actually happened; I lost body fat and gained about 1-2 pounds in muscle! Stay tuned for pictures from my round of Insanity: The Asylum. In the meantime here is a preview!
It’s been two weeks since I’ve completed the cleanse and I gotta say there is one thing that I’ve noticed right away. During the cleanse, my body felt really “light,” and after the cleanse I feel heavy and bloated. The fiber rich foods I consumed helped clear my system and made me feel great inside and out. It’s strange, but since I started eating meat again, I can really feel it sit in my lower abdominal area. I never felt bloated during the vegan diet. It may sound strange but I miss the “clean and light” feeling I had during the cleanse.
Overall this was a great experience. Not once did I feel like I was starving or that I wanted to quit. I also appreciate the fact that this diet introduced me to many foods that I never heard of, or considered eating (Quinoa for example). I also learned about the power of food, and how it can save your life. I’m not a converted vegan (I love meat too much!) but in the future I can see myself doing this cleanse once every year. I think it’s important to cleanse our bodies of the toxins we consume daily and a vegan cleanse is a great way of doing that.
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