Ever since I adopted this new diet, I have noticed that I am getting way too much soreness and muscle fatigue than I ever would have before for the amount of exercise I'm doing. It's like they are not able to heal as well, or at all. It's an unreasonable amount of soreness!
I've debated about the causes and can only put it down to...
1) maybe I actually am NOT getting enough protein from this diet? Although I'm eating quite my share of beans or tofu at every meal!
That's about all I can come up with! I do nOT want to start eating meat again, but it seems that with this diet I can't be active in the way I used to be :( Any suggestions appreciated!
Hi Julie, I work out constantly and did not notice a change in soreness. I don't even eat a lot of tofu or tempeh or anything like that, but I do get a lot of beans in my diet. I do P90X as well as running and kickboxing and have seen great advances while being vegan. The P90X program suggests a recovery drink after each workout within 1 1/2 hours to help your muscles recover. I did not get the one that they offer because it contains whey, but we do make green smoothies with spinach, kale, parsley, a mix of fruit, and hemp protein supplement. You could start drinking this after workouts using hemp, soy, rice, or pea protein supplements. You would also get iron from this as well. This will also give you a great energy boost! Good luck!
Hi Julie--okay, my guess is that your body hasn't adjusted to not eating meat. My suggestion is, for the next couple of months, to take at least a day off between workouts. Keep your workouts low key, things like yoga, Pilates, walking. Nothing crazy. Eat plenty of food. Eat whenever you're hungry. Then in two months go back to more strenuous workouts and see how you feel. You might consider having the doctor check your iron levels just in case. You could also add a sublingual B-12 supplement into your routine. However, I suspect it's just your body adjusting to new fuel. Last year I went whole-hog vegan from eating meat 2-3 times a day and I got so exhausted and emotional, I had to go back to eating meat. This time around, I've been slowly transitioning to vegan for the last 8 months or so, first giving up red meat, then white meat, then fish, and, about a month ago, eggs...strangely, going from just eggs to no animal products was the most profound and difficult transition of all. There's something abut giving up animal protein that really changes your body. Anyway, once I gave up eggs I got crazy hungry for a couple of weeks, then I got sleepy for a couple of weeks, and now I'm feeling pretty good and actually putting on muscle easily. All that to say I think your body just needs some time to adjust to living without meat.
Are you getting enough calories and in turn protein for your needs.
Try a vegan protein supplement such as sunwarrior raw protein(which has a great amino acid profile and is the nicest tasting on the market. If that helps after a while you can pretty much be sure it was not enough protein.
Getting some blood work done wouldnt help either, to check iron/b12 etc.
I don't know what sort of exercise you are doing, but if it is intense make sure you are replenishing your electrolytes. Also, I think the advice about it being the adjustment is probably true (I went from a vegetarian to vegan, so my transition was a gradual one). Warm baths with epsom salt couldn't hurt either.
I have been vegetarian all my life but noticed if I run more than 13 miles I need to eat constantly. I started to transition to being vegan and surprisingly it isn't hard since cheese is somewhat difficult to find in Asian and most Asian dishes don't include cheese or dairy.
I do find it frustrating because I am literally eating 6 meals a day and that doesn't include snacks. I eat until I am way past full but about an hour later I am hungry again. I haven't noticed anything about the recovery time but I do know I get light headed really easily and have to eat all the time. I have also started losing weight even though I eat what feels like all the time. Does anyone have recommendations on what to eat after long runs for speedy recovery?
(I have been eating a soup made with vegetables and 18 different beans, lots of grains, vegetables, fruits seeds and nuts. I removed almost everything processed, I did sample soya milk and hazelnut milk other than that I eat lots of tropical fruits since I live on the equator.)
Any recommendations for runners who want to stay vegan but don't want to lose weight?