Six months ago, I started on a plant based journey. I had done week long vegan challenges, even two week challenges, but have never gone so long without any kind of animal products before now. What started out a 13 week challenge based on Robert Cheeke's "Shred It!" book has become an important part of my daily routine.
Here are some things that many people need to be aware of... plant based people are not depriving themselves in any way. I eat more variety now than when I ate meat. What do typical meat eaters have? Most likely chicken, turkey, beef or pork. What do plant strong people eat? Kale, broccoli, cauliflower, spinach, black beans, chick peas, flax seeds, chia seeds, pumpkin seeds, berries, sweet potato, almond butter, peanut butter, quinoa, oatmeal... you get the idea. There are a lot of choices.
The classic comment I still get is "where do you get your protein from"! Have you ever met a protein deprived person? I have... my sister, who suffered from a severe eating disorder. The only way someone can be protein deficient is if they are not consuming enough calories. The average American gets way more protein than they need. But I do get a lot of protein... foods like navy beans, fava beans, quinoa, almond butter... a lot of healthy protein.
So how am I feeling after six months of just plant foods? GREAT! I have increased energy, I'm able to lift more weight and sustain a 5 day a week workout schedule. My body weight has been increasing, due to increased muscle mass.
I eat food every couple hours, whether it's a snack like almonds, or a meal, I don't get hungry with this way of eating. I figure I get around 3500 calories a day, which is a good amount for my increased activity.
I never imagined I would be plant based for this long but now that I've been doing this for so long, I can't imagine eating meat. I think my compassion for animals increased since being plant based. If I didn't feel good eating this way, that would be another story, but I honestly feel healthier than I was back when I ate meat. Note: It's been almost four years since I last had beef.
Here are a few pictures showing my journey from my obese days, after losing the weight and not doing much strength training, to a current picture, with more muscle.