The Ultimate Guide to Vegan Health & Fitness (updated Sept 2020)
Hoping to embark on your vegan health & fitness journey but don’t know where to start?
Then you’ve come to the right place! My name is Justine and, as a vegan certified personal trainer and yoga instructor, I’ve helped many clients achieve their goals.
The team at JustFit have provided this guide to help you navigate the world of plant-based health and fitness, which includes everything you need to know; from motivation and fitness goals to vegan sources of protein, meal plan suggestions, the best home workouts, how to lose weight, and how to gain muscle!
Not sure if a vegan health & fitness journey is for you?
Ultimate Guide to Vegan Health & Fitness Contents
- Plant-Based Motivation
- Vegan Diet
- Plant-Powered Fitness
1. Plant-Based Motivation
- Why go vegan?
- Health & fitness motivation
- Setting your vegan health and fitness goals
- Tracking to stay accountable
- Vegan Fitspo
Why go Vegan?
There are so many reasons you might want to transition to a vegan lifestyle but here are our top 8 reasons:
- For the animals
- Enhance your mental health
- Improve your physical health
- Discover delicious vegan food
- It’s getting trendier (and therefore easier)
- Strengthen global food security
- Save the rainforests
- Reduce greenhouse gas emissions
Need more convincing? Read my article to find out more about why I’m vegan!
Health & Fitness Motivation
Perhaps the most important aspect of vegan health & fitness is your motivation.
How many times have you tried to get fit and then renounced your efforts?
There’s no shame in it! We’re all guilty of giving in but that doesn’t mean we’ve failed. Instead, we should reevaluate our motivation.
For example, while aesthetics isn’t necessarily a bad reason for wanting to train, it can be unsustainable. This is especially true when the media spreads the concept of spot reduction, which is the misguided belief that you can perform isolated exercises to reduce fat in specific areas, such as, inner thighs, lower belly, etc. Once an individual realizes that targeting small muscle groups will not help them to reduce body fat, it can be incredibly demotivating.
We recommend thinking carefully about your motivation before you begin. Why are you training? What goals would you like to achieve and are they enough to keep you motivated, despite any plateaus or challenges you might face?
In the same way that you motivate yourself to follow a vegan diet, health & fitness requires commitment and sustainable goals.
Setting Sustainable Vegan Health & Fitness Goals (Step-by-Step Guide)
It’s time to set those goals! But how do you make sure your vegan health & fitness goals are realistic and sustainable?
The SMART method is a fantastic way of creating attainable goals to ensure success!
S is for Specific
We all want to be fit and healthy, so goals such as “I want to be fitter” are far too vague. Try being more specific by going into detail about what it is you want to achieve.
For example, you could have something like:
“I want to be fit enough to perform a perfect-form pull-up.”
Alternatively, if you want to improve your vegan diet, you might want to set a goal such as:
“I want to be healthier by cutting out processed plant-based foods.”
M is for Measurable
The next step is to work out how to track your progress and define how you will know when you reach your goal. In our pull-up example, you could measure specific strengthening exercises by counting your reps or tracking the level of resistance band you use to perform an assisted pull-up.
A is for Attainable
As a personal trainer, I often come across individuals hoping to lose 10 pounds or more a week. However, the majority of health professionals agree that losing 1-2 pounds a week is the safest and healthiest way to lose weight.
What’s more, rapidly losing that amount of weight can be very difficult and you risk putting it all back on again just as quickly! Setting yourself attainable – yet challenging enough to keep you motivated – goals will lead to long-term vegan health & fitness success.
“Strive for progress, not perfection.” Anon.
Especially since there’s no such thing as perfection!
R is for Relevant
Are your goals relevant to your life? Are they important to you or did you set them to meet society’s ever-changing beauty standards? Are you being pressurized to perform to a certain standard?
Make sure your goals fit with what you want!
T is for Time
Deadlines. Love them or hate them, they help us stay on track! Remember what ‘A’ stands for but set yourself a challenge and stick to it.
Now get your diary out and circle that date!
Want to learn more about creating a sustainable vegan health & fitness program to suit your lifestyle?
Tracking to Stay Accountable
*WATCH THIS SPACE: coming soon!
*WATCH THIS SPACE: coming soon!