How I plan to lean out and build muscle without vegan protein powders

Surely I’m not the only girl who want to be lean, with chiseled abs and defined shoulders?

I know, I know, you have the same goals too. But, we are vegan. We supposedly can’t build muscle. I mean, where on earth are we going to get protein from?

Okay, that was a joke, LOL! I seriously couldn’t resist…

We both know we get enough protein from the food we eat. But, to build muscle we need extra protein without added carbohydrates. So I guess that means we need vegan protein powders?

Well, that’s what I thought until they completely screwed up my hormones! The hormones I had finally balanced after so many years of PMS agony. I’m not even trying to sound dramatic here, but the fact is that prior to going vegan I always had super painful menstrual cramps.

Month after month without fail.

I used to get pain that would rotate around my waist, radiate through my legs, then have me curling in all sorts of random positions for relief. Of course no relief would come, and I would sob for hours on end cursing the god of menstrual cramps. He really deserved it.

The only way round it was to take at least double the recommended dose of Ibuprofen with codeine in it (paracetamol was useless), and then sleep for as many hours as I could.

I’m pretty sure you can imagine how annoying it was for me to deal with that type of pain again… Something that I had got rid off within four months of going vegan..*rolls eyes*

Protein powders and I? No thanks. The affair is not worthwhile.

So how on earth do I plan to lean out and build muscle without protein powders?

Going against the grain

I also thought it was impossible to build muscle or lose fat on a vegan diet without eating extremely high quantities of protein until I stumbled upon Robert Cheeke.

He’s the dude behind and the author of the vegan body building book shred it. If you don’t know him, I’d recommend you look him up.

Apparently there’s no need to make yourself sick on tofu, seitan and tempeh, or drink protein powders and/or supplements like there’s no tomorrow. All you need to do is focus on eating whole, plant based foods.

Yes that’s right, whole, plant based foods only.


He even suggests eating a macronutrient ratio of 70/15/15 (carbs/protein/fats). This ratio completely goes against the usual 40/30/30 or 30/40/30 split. And that is awesome for you and I!

There should be zero feelings of tiredness/weakness, and there will be no need for caffeine! Whoop!

I have no intentions of counting macros stringently just because it messes with my head. That said, I’m pretty sure I eat around that split anyway. I may do a rough calculation with MyFitnessPal to verify.

Getting stronger outside the gym

Since I can’t afford a gym membership right now – all of the gyms around me cost at least £80 a month. Seriously…

I have a lot of fitness dvd’s from BeachBody especially those by Shaun T. They’ve all yielded me great results in the past, but repeating the exact exercise programme over and over again does get boring.

So, this time I will be doing something slightly different.

I will follow a hybrid programme consisting of Shaun T’s Insanity Max 30 and Tony Horton’s P90X3. Insanity Max 30 is cardio-based program with some resistance (body-weight) training, while P90X3 is a resistance training focused programme.

I love the cardio in Shaun T’s programme, and I prefer the resistance training in P90X3 so it makes sense to combine both.

Just because great things start on Mondays (lol), I will start this programme on Monday April 1017. If you have both programmes and want to join me, I’ll post the workout schedule over the weekend.

Even if you don’t, but want to start a fitness programme, you’re welcome to join.

Look out for my workout schedule tomorrow 🙂

Somi, x





  1. Samantha
    8th April 2017 / 11:46 AM

    According to my uni timetable, I have every day apart from Tuesday (afternoons) free so I’m hoping to lose this excess weight and get back to how I looked pre-uni. I don’t have Insanity Max 30 or P90x3 so I’m planning to do a combination of Insanity (the regular one) and going to the gym (I have a uni gym membership). I can’t do every single move in Insanity because of my knees (my cousin’s wife who’s a PT recommends I don’t do jumping exercises or run often). At the gym, I plan on weight training again. I weight trained at least once a week before so I’m hoping to make that a more frequent thing.
    I’m in Southampton till early May (no gym nearby) so I’m planning on just playing badminton a few times a week with family, going for walks and doing as much of Insanity as I can.
    I’ve had flat abs and tonned arms and lean muscle everywhere before so I know of is possible on a vegan diet. First time I got to that stage, I was kinda 80/10/10 or 70/15/15. I didn’t count calories or check if I was sticking to that. I just got most of my calories from carbs and ate less fats and proteins than carbs.
    My favourite protein sources now, apart from green veggies, are chickpeas and lentils. I like beans, but I don’t cook with them often.

    • 8th April 2017 / 12:14 PM

      Oh that’s awesome to know that 80/10/10 and/or 70/15/15 has worked for you in the past. That’s even more of a reason why I’m sure it will work. I’ve gone a bit crazy with beach body DVD’s, I think I have most of them by now, lol!

      Your workout plan sounds great! Weight lifting is what I would have focused at if I could go to a gym, but I guess I’ll just use body weight for now.

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