Diet Roadtest #4 – it’s time to go vegan!

It’s now been a week since I commenced my latest roadtest – vegan! The challenge with a vegan diet, particularly for people who want to gain muscle, shred fat, and maintain energy levels, is usually:

  1. Getting enough protein
  2. Getting enough iron
  3. Getting enough calcium

So can it be done?

For this roadtest, I’ve enlisted the help of our affiliate dietician at Raw by Bek, Ellena Burnett. I knew I couldn’t do this one alone – particularly when it came to getting the right sources of protein and iron.

Here’s the challenge with a vegan diet – while there are plenty of protein sources, none of them have a complete set of proteins. So you need to know more in order to pair the right foods.

After a consult with Ellena, she’s put together a plan that takes into account not just the vegan roadtest, but also the amount of training I do (and the intensity of that training), the time I have to prep food (needs to be simple), and my goals (shred).

The meal plan

A typical day for me this week has looked like this:

Breakfast:

    Overnight oats (oats, cinnamon, vegan protein, chia seeds) with coconut yoghurt and half a cup of berries.

Lunch:

    180g tofu, 1.5 cups of cooked veggies, rice.

Dinner:

    Tofu, veggies, rice – although this varies depending on if I’ve trained in the evening, and how intense the training was.

Snacks:

    Morning tea has typically been a slice of whole meal toast with avo, and in the afternoon a protein shake on almond milk. If I’m training that evening, I’ll also have something like a banana to fuel my workout.
Meal prep, vegan style

What I’ve learned so far

  • This isn’t too different to what I was already eating in terms of type of food – I’ve just had to swap out a few things like real yoghurt for coconut yoghurt, and a different source of protein for dinner (I was already having tofu and veg for lunch).
  • I wasn’t having anywhere near enough protein or good fats in my day-to-day diet. I have actually doubled the amount of tofu I’d usually have for lunch.
  • Eating out isn’t too bad – it’s certainly easier than Keto! So far there’s either been vegan options or I can make modifications to menu items to make them vegan. However, finding vegan wine (yes, that is a thing) is proving more difficult if you’re buying off the menu! May need to investigate BYO…
  • I hate vegan protein powder. It has a weird after taste I thought I’d get used to. That has yet to happen. Also vegan protein powder = vile farts. Don’t say I didn’t warn you.

This diet has also coincided with my getting braces and Invisalign fitted. Long story short, will need jaw surgery next year and this is the pre-work. But that’s a story for another day.

It means I also need to be wary of if the food is too tough to eat. But more than that, having to take out the Invisalign every time I want to eat is a right pain in the arse. So much so that my laziness has trumped my hunger at certain times, which has actually been a really good way to curb my snacking habits!

One week down, and I’m feeling pretty good, although a little lethargic. I’m not saying vegan is to blame for that, as I’ve also had a massive week at work. So let’s see how week two goes … stay tuned.

2 thoughts on “Diet Roadtest #4 – it’s time to go vegan!

  1. Have you had many beans chickpeas etc? It seems very tofu heavy atm, obviously to get in the protein but there have been some studies about soy that suggest it may not be the best to eat heaps and heaps of (like anything I suppose)

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