To Veganize a Bodybuilder

Hellloooooooo <3 HAPPY INDIAN FOOD WEDNESDAY! ๐Ÿ˜€ Whoโ€™s celebrating? *Raises curry-covered hand in the air* You know I am.

Howโ€™s your day going?

Mine has been pretty bueno. I taught bootcamp, dominated my legs at the gym, and the Pilot came home from work early ๐Ÿ™‚

To rewind to last night, I ate an entire organic butternut squash.


I roasted two pans full of sliced butternut with garlic, sea salt, pepper and olive oil (375 for 40 minutes)

and then layered the pieces on a plate:

butternut (2)

Topped with marinara, goat gouda and Garlic Gold

butternut (3)

Devoured, then repeated ๐Ÿ™‚

Then, we poured ourselves glasses of wine the size of our heads


and settled down on the couch to watch Glee. The bummer was that I was SO excited for a new episode and found out via twitter that I have to wait another two weeks. Oh well ๐Ÿ˜‰

Youโ€™re probably wondering what the heck the post title means, as Iโ€™m not a body builder, but perhaps you remember me talking about my friend Ron.


Ron is Mr. Novice Georgia and a beefy McBeeferton bodybuilder. Before competitions, he follows a two week meal plan thatโ€™s extremely high in animal protein, low fat and low carb. Well I took his meal plan and veganized it ๐Ÿ™‚ The awesome thing about it? Itโ€™s all WHOLE foods, plant-based protein, more nutrients and the same specifications that his old 4 chicken breasts per day meal plan included. Baller, right?? ๐Ÿ˜€

Iโ€™ll definitely let you guys know what happens and will post the meal plan on here when itโ€™s all over ๐Ÿ™‚

Some of the foods that are included:

-Whole grains (specifically oats and quinoa)

-Nutritional yeast

-Legumes (kidney beans)

-Leafy greens (kale and romaine)

-Fruit (apples, clementines)

-SUN WARRIOR (my protein lovah)

-Healthy fats (almonds)

-Mung bean pasta (my fave pasta- 20g protein per serving and two ingredients: mung beans and water)

Iโ€™m pretty stoked about it because when you Google โ€œvegan bodybuilding meal plansโ€ most of the plans are extremely high sugar (via dried fruits), high fat (healthy fat, but still very high), and moderate protein. The plan that Ron and I worked on is much more balanced.

Welp, Iโ€™m off to run some errands and then head back to work.

Hope you have a great day <3


Something to do:

This leg exercise from Core Fusion. HOLY quads! (the move starts at 1:09)


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  1. Jessica @ How Sweet on September 8, 2010 at 12:51 pm

    I remember you posting about Ron before!! That is so cool – I can’t wait to see his results!

  2. Tina on September 8, 2010 at 12:52 pm

    As a previous figure competitor this little experiment of yours greatly interests me. I remember eating like that…not the vegan one though. I think I would like the vegan one more though. I couldn’t look at chicken or fish awhile after that. And I still can’t eat asparagus!

  3. Holly @ couchpotatoathlete on September 8, 2010 at 12:53 pm

    I can’t wait to see your menu for him — and he is going to follow this plan or it was just for fun? Sorry if I misunderstood your post.

    Your squash + marinara looks divine!

    • Fitnessista on September 8, 2010 at 12:54 pm

      yes he’s going to follow it for two weeks ๐Ÿ™‚

      • MoniMeals on September 8, 2010 at 2:14 pm

        I love that he will follow for 2 weeks, He is going to feel amazing!!! It is awesome how he is so open to change! ๐Ÿ™‚

  4. Lauren @ BIOCHEMISTA on September 8, 2010 at 12:55 pm

    That’s so cool! Are you doing this as a trial for him or is he changing his eating ways?? Either way, really cool ๐Ÿ™‚

    Love glasses of wine the size of my head! Since you’re also a shriaz/syrah lover, try Greg Norman’s Petite Syrah (not the shriaz). It’s AMAZING. Who knew golfers were also great wine makers???

    • Fitnessista on September 8, 2010 at 1:00 pm

      nope, just an experiment. i’m secretly hoping he’ll notice how amazing he feels and cut back on the meat a little ๐Ÿ˜‰

      • Lauren @ BIOCHEMISTA on September 8, 2010 at 3:11 pm

        So cool!!! Are you able to maintain the number of calories for the same amount of protein??

        • Fitnessista on September 8, 2010 at 5:54 pm

          yes- same nutritional stats all the way across

  5. Gabriela @ Une Vie Saine on September 8, 2010 at 12:58 pm

    I cannot wait for you to post this- the first thing I’m going to do is send it to my older brother, mr chicken and protein shakes!!

  6. Carrie on September 8, 2010 at 1:10 pm

    Whoa, had no idea that mung beans were so beastly!

    • Fitnessista on September 8, 2010 at 1:14 pm

      asian mung beans. the yellow ones don’t have nearly as much protein!

  7. Christina @ A Beautiful Mess on September 8, 2010 at 1:25 pm

    I am so excited for the veganized meal plans! My trainer has me on a high protein diet (at least 30% of my calories) and the only way I can hit it is with a significant amount of animal protein. I’m not a vegetarian but I’m also not really a fan of animal protein (chicken is about all I can stomach). So to find some high protein vegan/veg options would be amazing!

    Mung bean pasta sounds awesome… does it taste similar to regular pasta? and where do you find it?

  8. Dee on September 8, 2010 at 1:26 pm

    Very curious about the meal plan! Sounds really amazing.

  9. Averie (LoveVeggiesAndYoga) on September 8, 2010 at 1:31 pm

    Omg what a great post…this is so right up my alley! When I was getting ready for my fitness competition I did a big post on Vegan Protein, Protein FAQs and my thoughts on “getting enough” protein as a vegan. I don’t do tons of dried fruit OR nuts, they are too hard to digest, I also shy away from lots of protein powder. I really believe that eating greens and NATURAL foods like beans or kale or whatever grew from the earth is generally speaking, enough.

    There are exceptions to every rule, and I do also believe I have a lower protein requirement than some people, I believe I am what is called a slow metabolic oxidizer of protein vs. a fast one. Slower have lower protein requirements. After 3 decades of playing with my diet, I finally figured out what works for me, and it’s natural foods, not stressing over protein and “getting enough” and just eating real food and trusting that that’s fine, and not only fine, but great! I got 2nd place in my show ๐Ÿ™‚

    Ok sorry rambling but i LOVE THAT you helped him veganize his meal plan AND that you didnt make it full of protein powder and dried fruits/nuts.



  10. Michelle on September 8, 2010 at 1:34 pm

    Where do you buy your mung bean pasta? I’ve looked everywhere and can’t find it!

    • Fitnessista on September 8, 2010 at 1:58 pm

      whole foods! ๐Ÿ™‚

      • ashleigh on September 9, 2010 at 3:33 pm

        what section? I have looked at whole foods and couldn’t find it! 20 grams of protein in a pasta sounds amazing!

        • Fitnessista on September 9, 2010 at 5:19 pm


  11. Allison on September 8, 2010 at 1:34 pm

    Oh how exciting:):) I would really like to see what you came up with for the meal plan! There is no way that he wont notice how good he feels once he has been on the plan for awhile:):)

    I can not wait for glee to start!!!!!!!!

  12. Caitlin (EatFeats) on September 8, 2010 at 1:43 pm

    That is so cool! I can’t wait to see the vegan meal plan and hear about the results!

  13. Michelle @ Give Me the Almond Butter on September 8, 2010 at 1:44 pm

    I LOVE sun warrior. I crave that stuff now. I would follow any diet that involves Sun Warrior… well almost anything.

  14. Chantal on September 8, 2010 at 2:06 pm

    Awesome job! I really appreciate that you kept the focus on WHOLE foods rather than VEGAN foods because so many people (myself included back in the day) of eating lots of processed soy, seitan, and stuff like that. And I know the whole food vegan bodybuilder (even raw!) can be done, luckily, I have my hubby to prove it ๐Ÿ™‚ Is there a vegan word to describe a guy as “beefy”? haha.

  15. MoniMeals on September 8, 2010 at 2:11 pm

    That is fantastic! Great idea to veganize a body buiders diet. It is about time! ๐Ÿ™‚
    I am laughing as I basically eat enire butternut, spaghgetti, and kombocha squashes ALL the time. They are just so good, are we nuts!?
    I agree, I have the core fusion thigh/glutes dvd and HOLLY QUADS, is right!

  16. MoniMeals on September 8, 2010 at 2:12 pm

    Oh and I got the sun warrior last night, yipppeee! Thanks again for the killer deal. ๐Ÿ™‚

  17. Laury @ thefitnessdish on September 8, 2010 at 2:13 pm

    Very cool about your friend and the diet! I have a friend who is also a trainer, and he eats MEAT (animal protein) 8x a day….its disgusting. When we went to AC, he went to the diner late night and get an egg white omelet, side of sausage and bacon and a protein shake…like waaaaaaay over board with the protein. He thinks to get big and lean you need it, and guess what…he’s ended up with SO many issues, and will not admit it’s from all his nasty meat. I don’t knock anyone that eats animals, my hubby does, but some people have it in their head they need to go overboard with it!!

    PS–I just started seeing all the winter squash at Whole Foods and got so excited!!

  18. Megan @ Healthy Hoggin' on September 8, 2010 at 2:32 pm

    I hope the vegan experiment goes well for Ron! I’d hate having to eat that much animal protein every day! Eek! I bet he’ll feel so much better after a couple weeks, too!

    I’m so excited that it’s squash season again!! I could easily eat a whole one in one sitting, too!

    Looking forward to trying that leg workout! I’m traveling right now and can’t watch videos at the moment– but I’ll try it out when I get home tomorrow!

  19. umd98 on September 8, 2010 at 2:37 pm

    I think it is so neat how you worked to veganize a bodybuilder’s meal plan. I get a bit grossed out and sad when I look at some of the bodybuidler plans – all that chicken, brown rice and plain tuna – yuck!

    Life is too short and if you really love bodybuilding, like I know these competitors do, I want them to relish the experience in every way.

    Can’t wait to hear more about it!

  20. Angela on September 8, 2010 at 2:57 pm

    This is a great topic – I can’t wait to hear more about his specific plan. I’ve seen mung bean pasta but have yet to try it. Definitely going to give it a go since I’ve been trying to incorporate more protein in my diet.

  21. Anna @ Newlywed, Newly Veg on September 8, 2010 at 3:08 pm

    Very cool!! I listened to a podcast a few weeks ago that was an interview with a vegan body builder– it was really interesting. The podcast was Healthy Voyager Radio– I think it was a June episode!

  22. Heather (Heather's Dish) on September 8, 2010 at 3:10 pm

    exhale core fusion kicks my tail EVERY SINGLE TIME. i can’t wait to kill my quads later ๐Ÿ™‚

  23. Laughter-Loving Stacy on September 8, 2010 at 3:18 pm

    Nice! If I only had the bucks to be a vegan I would follow the plan. ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Fitnessista on September 8, 2010 at 5:54 pm

      actually ron was blown away with how cheap it’s going to be to eat this way compared to what he was eating before

  24. CathyK on September 8, 2010 at 3:20 pm

    great post, fitnessista!!! love this idea! will you be able to update us in the two weeks that ron is on the diet? i’d be interested in hearing how he’s doing!

    • Fitnessista on September 8, 2010 at 5:54 pm

      yeah i’ll definitely post updates!

  25. Michelle @ Turning Over a New Leaf on September 8, 2010 at 3:28 pm

    I can wait to see the completed meal plan!

    And that really makes me want to go out and buy a butternut squash, just sayin.

  26. Rebecca on September 8, 2010 at 3:28 pm

    I think that is awesome that you veganized his meal plan! I can’t wait to hear what he thought about it and to see his meal plan! So cool, something to look forward to. ๐Ÿ™‚

  27. Natalie on September 8, 2010 at 3:29 pm

    I’m excited to see the meal plan! I have quite a few friends who have done figure and bikini competitions and I never can get over how much animal protein they eat to prep for the shows.

  28. Jennifer M on September 8, 2010 at 3:40 pm

    Hey – do you have a post where you give sun warrior recipes? i know you use it a lot, but was hoping for a long list of recipes to sort through ๐Ÿ™‚

  29. fittingbackin on September 8, 2010 at 3:49 pm

    Very cool – glad you’re coming up with a great vegan plan!!

  30. Sarah on September 8, 2010 at 3:54 pm

    Really excited to hear about the results! It always amazes me how bodybuilders take in nearly whole chickens daily to get what they want their protein to be. SO cool that you have veganized it. I’m stoked.

    I’m also glad I am not alone in my serious butternut squash affair. I can totally devour a whole squash. My hub just sits and laughs. My favorite way to eat it it diced into little cubes, tossed in a mixture of olive oil, cumin, cayenne, coriander, ginger, cinnamon, and chili powder at 425F for almost an hour. O.M. gosh! The outside gets crispy and spicy (pretty browned and nearly burned, though not quite), but the inside is sweet and smooth. Heaven, for real. I think you would really dig the mix of spices. I just can’t get enough ๐Ÿ™‚ Now I think I want some…

  31. ari on September 8, 2010 at 4:26 pm

    oh my gosh, i’m SO EXCITED to see the meal plan. and i love that it includes all foods that i actually have! no crazy stuff! def going to be following it. idk if i can wait two weeks!

  32. Neen @ Broad Bean to Runner Bean on September 8, 2010 at 4:49 pm

    ohh how cool and creative of you! cant wait to hear the results and see the meal plan

  33. Chelsea @ One Healthy Munchkin on September 8, 2010 at 5:09 pm

    It’ll be so neat to hear about the results and whether or not he liked it!

  34. Naomi on September 8, 2010 at 5:19 pm

    i cant wait to hear what happens with ROn since I am training for my first fitness comp!

  35. Lauren on September 8, 2010 at 6:43 pm

    What a great challenge! Can’t wait to see more.

    PS- I LOVE this quad workout. But i can’t stand that woman. Her cheesy face always makes me want to punch the tv. LoL

  36. Amy on September 8, 2010 at 7:09 pm

    Are you going to do a body composition test with calipers first and after? I will be curious to see if he can keep his muscle on a vegan diet.

    • Fitnessista on September 8, 2010 at 10:03 pm

      yes, we’ll be monitoring his stats the entire time

  37. Morgan @ Healthy Happy Place on September 8, 2010 at 7:25 pm

    cant wait to see the meal plan and see the results!

  38. Cara Craves... on September 8, 2010 at 7:36 pm

    I am sure that you deserve the “size of your head” wine! Enjoy!

  39. Jessica@tastyandtrim on September 8, 2010 at 8:45 pm

    I have to give that mung bean pasta a try! 20 grams of protein per serving is impressive! Does it taste similar to regular pasta?

    • Fitnessista on September 8, 2010 at 9:37 pm


  40. Ellen@FirednFabulous on September 8, 2010 at 8:54 pm

    Ohh that squash looks yummy! You eat so clean it KILLLS me. And I can’t wait to see how Ron does on the meal plan. Go Ron go!

  41. Stephanie on September 8, 2010 at 9:46 pm

    Can’t wait to hear out the veganism goes!!! ๐Ÿ™‚

  42. Kimberley on September 9, 2010 at 5:28 am

    Hey Gina,
    I looked for mung bean pasta last night after reading this and the only kind they had in my store was from Eden Foods. It said 0 grams of protein, so I figured it was the wrong stuff and skipped it. Do you happen to know the brand you’ve used before?


    • Fitnessista on September 9, 2010 at 9:53 am

      it’s not eden… can’t remember the brand but it’s in black and green packaging and is in the asian aisle at whole foods

      • J C on September 18, 2010 at 12:17 am

        Is it this stuff:

        In case the URL gets eaten by anti-spam, it’s EXS brand Mung Bean Fettucini, it comes in a black and green package and the nutritional info says 20g protein and 17.5g protein per 187-calorie serving. That *is* impressive. They also make soybean spaghetti and black bean spaghetti.

  43. Kristin on September 9, 2010 at 2:49 pm

    Hi Gina! Quick question! I love seeing how many wonderful veggies you eat for your meals. I LOVE veggies but they don’t always love me (if you know what I mean)! I would love to eat a whole squash but my tummy would definitely be mad at me. Any suggestions on how to stop this from happening. I already drink a TON of water because heard to helps with fiber digestion. Anything else? Sorry if this is an embarrising question.

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