Robert Cheeke on Staying Motivated, Changing Course, and Embracing Imperfection

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In an effort to keep the show fresh, Matt and I rarely invite a former guest back on to No Meat Athlete Radio. To be asked back for a third episode puts vegan bodybuilder Robert Cheeke in rare company.

But with a new book, a move to a different state, and the transition away from speaking and traveling (as frequently, anyway), we knew this conversation with Robert would be different. And it was.

In this episode we talk to Robert about how his lifestyle and career have shifted as more plant-based bodybuilders hit the scene, and what that transition has done for his motivation levels. He also shares why he’s embracing imperfection when it comes to nutrition, and how he’s gained more muscle than ever before.

If you liked the first two episodes with Robert, you’ll love this new one.

Here’s what we talk about in this episode:

  • How Robert gained more muscle than ever before
  • Robert’s food confession
  • Why stepping away may provide more inspiration
  • Muscle mass and longevity … what’s the connection?

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Dr. Pamela Fergusson on Practical Vegan Nutrition, Speedwalking Ultramarathons, and Living Intentionally

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Pamela Fergusson lives in Toronto, where she runs a nutrition consulting practice as a registered dietitian and nutrition PhD. And that’s as normal as Pamela’s story gets.

She’s an ultramarathoner — sometimes running, but sometimes speed walking (different from power walking, as she explains in our interview). And this past summer, she did her own unsupported, self-styled iron-distance triathlon … no clocks, no crowds, just 140.6 miles to cover in a day, by herself.

Pamela has four children who eat like she does and have their own busy lives … but Pamela’s family chooses not to own a car.

Oh, and now and then, she pulls her kids out of school for a month to homeschool them in other countries.

When it’s so easy to let important things slide until it feels like you’re just getting by, Pamela seems to be so on top of everything. How does she find the time?

That’s what I wondered when I met her this summer in Toronto at a meetup of our No Meat Athlete group there, and it’s why I’m thrilled to have her as my guest on this episode of No Meat Athlete Radio.

Here’s what we talk about in this episode:

  • Pamela’s advice on plant-based meal planning
  • Potential deficiencies in a plant-based diet … and how protein isn’t one of them
  • How to help your kids love eating healthy and being vegan
  • The Zen of speed walking
  • The joy of owning no car
  • Pamela’s experiences with homeschooling her children in foreign countries

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Summer Running Camp, Part 5: Race Day Walk-Through

A man in a sports uniform is running along the shore of the lake

With this week’s Equinox came the end of summer … and the official closing ceremony at the NMA Summer Running Camp.

If you missed the first four weeks of camp, here’s what we covered:

  1. Building consistency
  2. Running form
  3. How to prevent running injuries
  4. Advanced marathon training and racing with coach Jason Fitzgerald

After much consideration, Matt and I felt there was no better way to wrap things up than to head to the races.

In this week’s episode we share a complete race day walk-through. From port-o-potties to pacing, we present the whole picture and how to manage it.

Oh, and there’s a special treat at the top of this episode, so crank it up.

Here’s what we talk about in this episode:

  • The days leading up to your race — what you need to know
  • What to eat on race morning
  • Port-o-potties … how to handle the lines
  • Are pacing groups helpful?
  • Dealing with the marathon bonk

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How Not to Suck at Cooking

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If you want to start eating healthy, the number one thing you can do isn’t to go on a diet or juice cleanse. It’s to start cooking at home.

Just by cooking your own food you’ll cut back on the amount of salt, oil, and unhealthy junk chefs add to restaurant meals that makes them so delicious.

The problem is a lot of us don’t know how to cook. I’m mean, just listen back to last week’s episode and you’ll see how little Matt and I knew not that long ago.

But a lot has changed since our days of college, and in today’s episode, Matt and I share the basic cooking tips we rely on almost every single day.

As a bonus, Matt shares the skills he’s learned so far at the Rouxbe plant-based cooking school (he’s only about 20% through so far, so expect more from that in the future).

Here’s what we talk about in this episode:

  • Why is it important to cook at home?
  • How to choose a cookbook
  • What Matt has learned (so far) in cooking school
  • Essential equipment for a well designed kitchen
  • Preparing food … the right way

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What We Wish We Knew In College (About Food, Exercise, and Life)

Young man moving into dormitory on college campus

Back to school. Back to school. To prove to dad that I’m not a fool

For students, early September means one thing: The end of summer and the beginning of a new school year.

I have fond memories of the first day back to school, especially in college. Nerves were high, but so was the excitement of new classes, roommates, experiences, and friends.

And I can speak for both Matt and I when I say that we had a lot of fun during our college days … and that we made many stupid mistakes.

In today’s episode we think back to those mistakes, and share the fitness, nutrition, and life lessons or advice we wish we’d known in college.

Here’s what we talk about in this episode:

  • Brown rice … not fried rice
  • Why running a terrible marathon was Matt’s best decision ever
  • Doug’s weekly gym mistake
  • The books we wish we’d read in college
  • An easy way to eat healthy (even in a dining hall)
  • The life lessons we wish someone had told us

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Summer Running Camp, Part 4: Advanced Marathon Training and Racing with Coach Jason Fitzgerald

Throughout the first three weeks of summer running camp Matt and I have focused almost entirely on running topics for beginners:

This week we decided to switch things up a bit by exploring the differences between training for a marathon as a beginner, and training for your second, third, or forth marathon.

To do so we’ve invited one of the biggest running geeks we know, Jason Fitzgerald, a running coach and founder of Strength Running.

He shares advice on advanced marathon training, marathon specific workouts, and how to take your racing to a new level.

Here’s what we talk about in this episode:

  • The difference between your first and third marathon
  • Measuring your workload
  • The best workouts for a faster marathon
  • Why you should run more races
  • The perils of track workouts for marathoners
  • Pacing on race day

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Summer Running Camp, Part 3: How to Prevent Running Injuries

A man in a sports uniform is running along the shore of the lake

The weather might be cooling off, but Summer Running Camp is still in full swing.

During the first two weeks of camp we covered establishing a running routine and proper running form. Both fundamentals of sustainable running.

This week we cover a topic most runners pretend doesn’t exist (until it’s too late):

Injuries and injury prevention.

For many runners, injuries have become commonplace. They find themselves with a new injury each season, or battle the same aches and pains year after year.

But that doesn’t have to be the standard — in fact it shouldn’t be. There is such a thing as injury-free running, and in today’s episode we’ll help you find it.

So lace up those running shoes and head towards the lake. Camp has officially resumed for the next 55-minutes.

Here’s what we talk about in this episode:

  • Are injuries just a part of running?
  • Why most beginners get injured
  • When it’s important to warm-up before a run
  • Eating after a run — should you calculate nutrient ratios?
  • The forgotten recovery tool
  • How to adjust your training after an injury
  • The great ball-bag debate

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10 Vegan Foods We Couldn’t Live Without

Beans in tomato sauce and rice - a delicious vegetarian lunch. O

Everyone has their staples … the foods or meals they turn to week after week.

But how many of your staples do you rely on simply because of convenience, and how many are foods you would truly never want to give up?

In today’s episode Matt and I discuss their top 10 favorite vegan food we couldn’t live without. The foods, sauces, meals, and drinks we rely heavily on week after week for both nutrients and pleasure.

And believe it or not, hummus didn’t make the list.

Here’s what we talk about in this episode:

  • Are there foods we really couldn’t live without?
  • Sauces and homemade dressings we always have on hand
  • Matt’s favorite pasta dish
  • A simple way to get your G-BOMBS

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