NMA’s 15 Rules to Live By

When it comes to food and fitness habits, I don’t think rules are a good thing. Guidelines, sure, but without a little wiggle room, it’s too easy to throw up your hands and give in when your willpower runs dry.

But when it comes to living a meaningful life — and ensuring that my system for managing it works — I find it’s actually easier to be less flexible … and to follow a set of real, actual rules.

In today’s episode, Doug and I share the 15 rules we live by, the firm boundaries that help us live the lives we want and find balance and happiness.

They might not all be for you, but I hope you’ll find a nugget or two to add to your own set of rules for living.

Here’s what we talk about in this episode:

  • The best reason to make your bed in the mornings
  • How to make gratitude a part of your day
  • One ritual I do first thing, every single morning
  • Hell Yeah! or no
  • “Jazz Hour”?
  • How play changes everything
  • Why I intentionally ignore the news

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7 Popular Food Trends and How They Can Help Vegan Athletes

EP126

Let’s play a quick game:

Pull out a sheet of paper and jot down all the current food trends that come to mind. How many did you come up with?

Doug and I did that last week, and had no trouble pulling together a long list of popular trends. These days food trends come and go quicker than a Snapchat (that’s what the kids call those things, right?), but every once in a while one will take hold and stick around.

In today’s episode, we chose seven trends from our list that we think have staying power, and discuss what those trends mean for us as vegan athletes. And no, not all the trends that made the cut are even vegan (ahem, bacon) — but we give vegan options of even those.

Here’s what we talk about in this episode:

  • Can pickle juice stop your running cramps?
  • Why even a vegan podcast can’t avoid bacon — and a recipe for a vegan version that will knock your socks off
  • A vegan version of bone broth?
  • Matt’s experience with tart cherry juice
  • Two old drinks’ return to popularity
  • The healing power of turmeric

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How to Cook Vegan for Kids, with ‘Plant-Powered Families’ Author Dreena Burton

Dreena BurtonAs any parent knows, getting your kids to eat healthy isn’t easy. Raising them on a plant-based diet? Seems a lot trickier, but it doesn’t have to be.

Which is why I love Dreena Burton’s cookbook Plant-Powered Families. She takes a simple approach to feeding your kids, with whole-food, oil-free, plant-based recipes that they’ll actually eat (maybe even enjoy!).

In today’s episode, Dreena and I talk about what it takes to raise healthy, plant-based children, with lots of ideas and tricks that even non-parents can use to streamline their cooking.

Don’t forget to leave a comment below to enter the Plant-Powered Families giveaway!

Here’s what we talk about in this episode:

  • Why Dreena started writing family-friendly recipes
  • Should parents worry about oil or soy?
  • The supplements and nutrients plant-based children need
  • How to introduce healthier foods
  • When to let your kids try unhealthy foods
  • The allergy problem in schools

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Hip Hop Mogul and ‘Happy Vegan’ Author Russell Simmons

EP125I have to admit, this one was pretty fun … it’s not often (or ever) that I have the opportunity to speak to a legend in the hip-hop community. Or any other community, for that matter.

But when Russell Simmons, co-founder of the Def Jam Recordings, writes a book called The Happy Vegan, you better believe I’m going to try to get him on the podcast.

An outspoken vegan, yogi, and bestselling author, Russell Simmons has impacted far more than the music industry. In today’s episode Russell talks to me about his transition into veganism, and why he finds meditation and yoga to be essential parts of his Happy Vegan lifestyle.

Here’s what we talk about in this episode:

  • What does it mean to be a Happy Vegan?
  • How the hip-hop community has embraced veganism
  • Is the plant-based diet more expensive?
  • Meditation as a lifestyle change
  • The #1 question Russell gets asked (and it isn’t about protein)

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Health and Fitness Data: How Much is Too Much?

blond woman setting her timer before jogging

Apple Watches, GPS watches, step counters, smart phones, and fitness trackers.

Sensors in our shoes.

Sensors in the kitchen.

The sources for live health and fitness data these days are seemingly endless, and with each new gadget, data tracking becomes a bigger part of our everyday life.

But is all that data really useful? And if it is, when does it become too much?

Of course there’s no right answer, but those are the questions we try to tackle in today’s episode. We discuss the trend towards more data, how it can be helpful, and why too much data caused me to assume the worst about my health.

And of course, we poke fun of those 10,000 steps everyone is suddenly trying to hit.

Here’s what we talk about in this episode:

  • Why blood work left me in a panic
  • Do we really know how to interpret all this data?
  • How you should be using the information you collect
  • A case for not tracking your runs
  • A case for tracking each and every workout

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Nerd Fitness’ Steve Kamb on How to Level Up Your Life

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Steve Kamb is a blogging buddy of mine from way back. We both started our sites in 2009 (damn, that seems like a long time ago!), met in person in 2010, and were even in an accountability group together for a few months.

If you think No Meat Athlete is a blogging success story, well, then you haven’t seen Nerd Fitness. The unlikely combination of superhero nerd culture and serious fitness and motivation turns out to be exactly what the internet was looking for, and Nerd Fitness has exploded in the past few years.

In this episode, Steve and I talk about forming about how Nerd Fitness got started, how to “stop relying on discipline, and start manufacturing discipline,” and of course his new book, Level Up Your Life.

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Our Backwards Approach to New Year’s Goals

Happy New Year

It’s a new year, which can only mean one thing … new goals, resolutions, and habits.

Normally that would be the case for both me and Doug. We’d set specific goals, and work like crazy to reach them.

But this year, when we sat down to plan out this episode, something weird happened. Neither of us had specific goals, and instead we found we’re both taking a similar (and oddly backwards) approach to 2016 resolutions.

In today’s episode we talk about that backwards approach to new years goals, and how we see potential for even greater positive changes.

Here’s what we talk about in this episode:

  • How Matt ruined Christmas
  • Why we’re taking a backwards approach to New Year’s goals
  • The books that are shaping our resolutions
  • Potential problems with our goals
  • Should you take this backwards approach?

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Vegan Pro Soccer Player Baggio Husidic

baggio

From mid-pack runners to professional triathletes, we’ve had the opportunity to share a lot of stories and advice from vegan athletes on this podcast. But today’s interview is a first — Baggio Hudisic, an MLS soccer player.

I’m excited to share my conversation with the vegan midfielder for the LA Galaxy about his diet, training, and how going plant-based is making him a better athlete.

Here’s what we talk about in this episode:

  • The impact of Baggio’s childhood (his family fled Bosnia to escape the war in the mid-90’s) on his attitude towards soccer and diet
  • When and why he went vegan
  • Was it risky to go vegan when you’re already a pro?
  • The incredible, measurable results Baggio has experienced since going vegan
  • The affect his diet and results have had on teammates
  • How Baggio eats on a typical training day

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