If you are vegan, trying to build muscle can seem like a difficult task. However, with the right planning it is totally possible, and these vegan fitness tips will get you on the right track.
One of the best tips for anyone looking to build muscle, lose fat or even maintain weight while training is to calculate your macronutrients. This is where you figure out the amount of carbs, fats and proteins you need in order to build, maintain and recover muscles. Great options for vegans for fulfilling all of your macros are potatoes and oats (complex carbs), avocados and nuts (healthy fats), and chickpeas and lentils (filling proteins). To calculate your macronutrients, you can use any of the various calculators available, which will figure out your macros and total daily calories depending on your weight, height, and goals.
When thinking about macros, a key vegan fitness tip is to know which to consume when. You are often told that you should be consuming protein post-workout, which is totally true as it helps to rebuild and repair your muscles. However, it is important to also refuel your body with complex carbs such as sweet potatoes, brown rice, beans, whole-grain pasta or lentils. The benefits of consuming both carbs and protein after exercise was shown in a 2016 study that looked into the next day performance of cyclists when both were consumed after two hours of ‘exhaustive’ cycling. It is important to remember that pre- and post-workout meals are crucial when looking to gain muscle, giving you the energy to complete your workout and then replenishing what you have lost.
When it comes to vegan supplements, one of the best options for vegan fitness is creatine. When working out our body uses creatine to give our cells energy, meaning that your muscles are given the chance to reach their full potential. The only issue with creatine as a vegan is making sure that the capsules are also vegan. Some of these capsules are made of gelatine, but an easy way to avoid this is to stick to a powder supplement. Additionally, there are a few kinds of creatine, but creatine monohydrate is considered the best form for receiving benefits, as well as being the most highly tested. This means that if your vegan fitness goal is to gain muscle, creatine monohydrate like our vegan Creatine Monohydrate tablets are a great option.
Moving from diet to exercise, one of the best ways to get fit and build muscle is to switch up your workouts and always focus on pushing your body to the limit (without hurting yourself, of course). Obviously, heavy compound moves like squats and deadlifts are an amazing way to build strength and muscle fairly quickly, and they use so many muscles that they are a full body move. However, it is important to mix them with isolated movements and HIIT in order to see the best benefits. Isolation movements, such as hamstring curls, glute kickbacks, or bicep curls are a great way to strengthen and grow specific muscles. Not only will this benefit big compound moves, but it means you can focus on specific goals (like wanting bigger biceps or visible quads). HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training) is also a great (and quick) way to get leaner and fitter. Not only is HIIT amazing for your cardiovascular health, but it builds endurance in your muscles using explosive moves (e.g. box jumps), and it boosts your metabolism, meaning that calories and fat continue to burn for hours.
Hopefully this has given you an idea of how to master vegan fitness, from nutrition to exercise. The best way to get fit and build muscle on a vegan diet is to master your macros and combine heavy and isolated lifts with HIIT. Vegan supplements are also a great way to boost this process and aid your training, and our muscle and mass range are a great aid.