Want to follow a vegan calisthenics diet but not sure where to start? In this article we are going to cover the basics of a vegan calisthenics diet, specifically what to eat and how it can benefit your calisthenics training.
Vegan Diet Basics
The first thing that any vegan dieter needs to know is what they can eat and what they cannot eat.
If you have decided to go vegan then you will know that all animal, and animal related products are to be eliminated. These include:
- Fish / Seafood
Apart from those foods the rest are fine to eat.
In terms of what you can eat, Here is a brief list of the food groups that a vegan diet is typically based on:
For some people this information would be all they needed to get started on a vegan diet. However since we are looking to combine vegan dieting, with calisthenics training, there is little more thought that needs to be put into the diet plan.
Adapting A Vegan Diet For Calisthenics
Calisthenics is a form of training that relies heavily on muscular strength. The stronger your muscles are, the greater potential you have for performing difficult calisthenics moves such as the one handed push up, one handed chin up, muscle ups and so on.
As a result it is imperative that your diet is paid close attention to. Building muscle and strength requires specific fuel and building blocks that all come from the food we eat.
Let’s look into some of the key components of diet that should be focused on for a calisthenics athlete:
- Protein – Protein is the building blocks of muscle. Science has undoubtedly shown that in order to optimize muscular strength and size, protein requirements must be met. One of the greatest worries of people turning vegan, is where they will be able to get their protein from, as one of the most common sources of protein is meat and dairy. Luckily this is not an issue at all if you know how to structure a proper diet plan (which we will be touching on in the paragraphs to come).
- Carbohydrates – Carbohydrates will provide your muscles with the energy they need to work through a tiresome workout, as well as provide your body with the primary fuel it needs to perform all the things we take for granted, including walking, talking, thinking etc
- Fats – Fats also provide the body with energy to perform everyday tasks, as well as provide some of the components involved with hormonal production and balance.
- Calories – Calories is just the unit of measurement that is used to quantify how much energy a particular food has. Knowing how many calories your eating is especially important for the athletes who are interested in gaining considerable muscle mass and strength, or for those who are looking to reduce body fat.
To make an optimal vegan calisthenics diet, all we have to do at this point is:
Using vegan foods, construct a diet that meets the protein, carbohydrate, fat and calorie requirements of a calisthenics athlete.
Vegan Calisthenics Diet – The Final Plan
Let’s talk about how we are going to use vegan foods to create a plan that is optimized for calisthenics training.
For a vegan, some of the best sources of protein would be:
My personal recommendations are that you make sure to incorporate plenty of grains and nuts/seeds in your diet, this should get you the bulk of your protein.
Good examples of grains and nuts would be:
Nuts / seeds:
If you want additional protein, then vegan protein shakes would be an ideal option. Some of the most common ones would be hemp protein, pea protein and brown rice protein.
Beans and legumes are also packed with protein, feel free to add them into your diet, however I find that they do cause gas and intestinal discomfort for most.
Since you will be eating a lot of grains, you will also be eating a good amount of carbohydrates.
So at this point you can look to add in fruits and vegetables as a way to further increase your carbohydrates, they also provide lots of vital micronutrients which are crucial for overall health.
Some good examples would be:
- Leafy greens (kale, spinach, lettuce etc)
- Green Beans
So far you will have obtained a fair share of fats from grains and nuts / seeds. You can choose to add in some extra fats into your diet in the form of oils:
Sample Meal Plan
Most people like to have examples of meal plans so that they can fully grasp what a diet will look like on a regular day. Here is the diet broken down into meals and snacks.
- Rice with vegetables. Add some spices, sauces and oils for taste.
- Quinoa with vegetables. Add some spices, sauces and oils for taste.
Snacks (at any time of the day when you feel like you need it)
- Fruit and/or nuts
Finally, the last thing that needs to be managed is the overall calories. To get an idea on that you need to think about:
- Is your goal to build muscle and strength? If it is then you want to be in a calorie surplus, eating more then your maintenance calories.
- Or do you want to lose fat? If so, then you want to be in a calorie deficit, eating less than your maintenance calories.
- Are you happy with your current weight/size, and want to maintain? Then you simply need to eat your maintenance calories.
Maintenance calories refers to the amount of calories you need on a daily basis to maintain your current body weight. You can find this out by searching on google “maintenance calorie calculator”.
Once you find that out you can add 10-15% onto your maintenance if your looking to go into a surplus.
Conversely you can reduce a percentage from your maintenance (typically 15%-30%) if you looking to go into a deficit.
I recommend that you get a calorie counting app like myfitnesspal, so you can get familiar with foods and their correlating calories. I also recommend reading a bit more on calories surpluses and deficits as extra knowledge on these topics can help you navigate your diet better.
If You Have Enjoyed This Article
Thanks for taking the time to read this vegan calisthenics diet article. I appreciate the opportunity to contribute to calisthenicz.com.
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If you have any questions regarding the vegan calisthenics diet then leave a comment below and we will try and answer as soon as we can. Thanks for reading!