Rich Roll on the High-Energy, Plantpower Diet (Plus, Win a Copy of His New Book!)

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In just a few short years since he gave up cheeseburgers and decided to train for a triathlon, Rich Roll has gotten his name on the short list of people you mention when somebody asks if a plant-based diet can work for athletes.

It started with his surprising finish at Ultraman, essentially a double Ironman over the course of three days in Hawaii.

Then it was being named one of the 25 Fittest Guys in the World by Men’s Fitness, and in 2012, sharing his story in his first book, Finding Ultra. 

Recently, it’s been spreading the message with his uplifting and thought-provoking podcast, and traveling the world giving talks about his story and the power of a plant-based lifestyle.

Today Rich’s new cookbook, The Plantpower Way, hits the shelves, and it’s my immense privilege to bring you a new interview, recipe, and giveaway from one of the most recognizable people in plant-based fitness.

The NMA Academy Seminar with Rich Roll

Just after we ran the 5K at the Marshall Healthfest last month, Rich and I sat down to record an hour-long, in-depth seminar for the No Meat Athlete Academy. Although these seminars are typically private for our members, I’m excited to make Part 1 of that interview available here, in celebration of the release of The Plantpower Way and the one-year anniversary of the NMA Academy:

In this portion, we focus on diet and Rich’s new book. In Part 2 of the interview, which you can get when you subscribe for free to NMA Radio on iTunes, we dive into Rich’s low-intensity training philosophy, his approach to mindfulness, and his now-famous advice that you should quit lifehacking and instead invest in the journey.

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How to Eat for Maximum Energy (and Where to Find the Time to Do It)

academy-aniversaryIt’s been just over a year since we launched the No Meat Athlete Academy, where each month we dive into a new plant-based fitness, nutrition, or lifestyle topic — often with the help of a guest expert.

In that time we’ve accumulated almost 16 hours of audio seminar content, plus another 20 hours of live Q&A recordings, all of it available forever inside the Academy.

To celebrate the Academy’s birthday — and, okay okay, to whet your appetite in anticipation of a relaunch we’ll be doing soon — today I’m excited to share some clips from a few of my favorite seminars we’ve done over the course of the past year.

(Most recently, we welcomed plant-based superstar Rich Roll as our guest for an hour-long seminar and a followup Q&A. I’ve got some clips from that seminar coming soon, or you can get them now by subscribing to No Meat Athlete Radio on iTunes.)

We put these clips in the form of two NMA Radio episodes, each clocking in at 42 minutes. You can stream them right from the blog, or if you prefer, download them to your device.

Players and links are below — enjoy these interviews!

Episode 1: The Optimal Diet for Health and Energy?

In the first episode, you’ll hear in-depth clips from two of our early guests.

First, elite ultrarunner Michael Arnstein shares his enthusiasm for a diet based almost entirely on raw fruits and vegetables. A fruitarian diet sounds extreme, no doubt, but it’s hard not to be excited when you hear Mike talk about the dramatic improvements to his running he experienced when he switched from a cooked vegan diet to his current raw one.

(And before you write off an 80/10/10 diet — 80 carbohydrate, 10 percent fat, 10 percent protein — as pure craziness, you might be surprised to learn that in his most recent book, Whole, Dr. T. Colin Campbell, author of the famed China Study, recommends exactly this ratio, though not completely raw.)

But let’s face it: most people aren’t going to eat this way, and many would argue that in the long term, a certain amount of cooked food (and more fat than 10 percent of calories) is both protective against disease and more realistic than a fully raw one. And that’s the focus of the next clip, with Sid Garza-Hillman, author and nutritionist at The Stanford Inn: a high-raw, whole-food diet that still includes plenty of cooked food and a little more wiggle room.

You can check out the clips from both Mike and Sid’s interviews in the first episode, called The Optimal Diet for Health and Energy, here:

Or download the episode here (you may need to right click and “Save link as”).

Episode 2: How to Create All the Time You Need

Understanding what to eat is one thing, but making it work in the real world is quite another.

In this second episode you’ll hear advice from Jeff Sanders, host of the popular 5AM Miracle podcast (and who happens also to be my weekly accountability partner), and Heather Crosby, author of Yum Universe, on building habits to create the time you need in order to make health a priority.

With Jeff, I discuss his “5AM Miracle” system for waking early (even if not at that ungodly hour) and blocking off time in your day that’s just for you — to work on something that brings you joy and energy, whether it’s running, cooking, or something entirely unrelated.

With Heather, we focus more specifically on food, diving into some time-saving kitchen tips and a general approach to kitchen management that will help you make healthy food a priority.

Click the button below to listen to these sections of my interviews with Jeff and Heather in this episode, called How to Create All the Time You Need:

Or download the episode here (you may need to right click and “Save link as”).

There’s more to come …

If this is the first you’ve listened to No Meat Athlete Radio and you like what you hear, you can subscribe to the show on iTunes. As you’ll hear just about every podcast host say (over and over), ratings and reviews on iTunes are extremely helpful in getting our show heard by new people, so please do me a favor and leave one while you’re there. Thanks!

And in a few days, I’ll be back with a sneak peek at our seminar with Rich Roll! Until then …

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Vegan Ironman Gene Baur on His New Book, ‘Living the Farm Sanctuary Life’

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It’s hard not to be a Gene Baur fan. Most will know him as the co-founder of Farm Sanctuary, author, and speaker, but unless you follow Gene closely, you might not realize that as a BQ-marathoner and Ironman, he embodies what NMA is all about.

Gene’s beautiful new vegan-lifestyle-guide-meets-cookbook, Living the Farm Sanctuary Life, hits the shelves next week. In this interview on No Meat Athlete Radio we discuss Gene’s athletic accomplishments, whether eating a plant-based diet can help us live longer, the small steps approach to change, and the theme of mindfulness that runs throughout the new book.

It’s also my pleasure to share a recipe from the new book: Tacos with Salted Grilled Plantains, Salsa Verde, and Pepitas! And — gigantic bonus alert — it features homemade corn tortillas, which just this week I’ve started making (and become mildly obsessed about). You’ll find the recipe at the end of this post below the interview.

Enjoy the interview, and don’t miss Gene’s appearance on the Daily Show with Jon Stewart on April 6th!

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David Clark on Addiction, Recovery, and Losing 160lbs

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Just a few years ago, David Clark was addicted to drugs and alcohol, obese, and watching his business and life crumble before his eyes. What happened?

Reality hit. And it hit hard.

If he didn’t immediately make drastic changes, David would be dead in no time. So he decided to go vegan, start running, and fight his addictions. He’s now an accomplished ultrarunner and speaker, and Doug and I couldn’t be more excited to have him on this week’s podcast episode.

David’s story might sound extreme for some, but it’s these extreme examples that inspire me the most. When faced with what must have felt like an impossible task, he fought through it. We can all learn from that type of determination.

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How to Travel on a Plant-Based Diet

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How do you make a plant-based diet work when you’re traveling?

Like so many other things, it depends.

For example: I’m about to set sail on the Holistic Holiday at Sea cruise, where the menu is all vegan (even oil-free vegan, if you want!). Afterward, I get to hang out with the NMA Miami running group for a day and check out a few of their favorite vegan spots in the city.

In this case, eating plant-based on the road (or the sea) is simple: the trip is largely planned around this diet, so there’s nothing to think about.

Podcast co-host Doug, on the other hand, is running a 100K this weekend, five hours away from Asheville, NC where we live. While ultramarathon aid stations tend to be fairly vegan-friendly, it’s risky to bet on it. What’s more, Doug has to make sure he eats well during the meals before and after that race. Much trickier than my trip, but as you’ll glean from listening to this episode, Doug’s taking it in stride.

A host of other considerations make the “vegan travel” answer a complicated one: Driving or flying? Big city or middle of nowhere? Hotel with a fridge? Just one destination, or multi-city roadtrip?

In this latest episode of No Meat Athlete Radio, we dive into the question of how to travel with your PBD. It’s a fun episode, and if you’ve never taken the time to check out the show — which we’re putting much more effort and time into these days — now’s as good a time as any.  Enjoy!

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Leo Babauta on Habits, Simplicity, Running & Diet (Plus the New Zen Habits Book!)

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Today I’ve got new interview with author Leo Babauta, so the appropriate thing to do is to start by telling you all about his blog, Zen Habits.

But that would be dumb, because you already know about Zen Habits.

I’d like to think that’s because I’ve linked to it more often than to any other blog, and that I somehow manage to mention Leo in just about every podcast episode we make. But that’d be giving myself too much credit.

In truth, the real reason is that so many No Meat Athlete readers have come from Zen Habits — a massively popular blog that’s twice been named by Time Magazine as one of the best in the world. It was Leo who gave me my first big guest post opportunity, A Beginner’s Guide to Trail Running back in 2010, and whose support of NMA since then has been helpful beyond measure.

But Leo’s impact on me goes far beyond this.

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Who’s that in the ‘Vegan’ Socks on the Cover of Runner’s World?

RW1014_COVWhen Runner’s World redesigned their magazine starting with this month’s issue, their stated goal was to have the magazine fit better into every runner’s world.

I’ll go ahead and speak for our crowd on this one, and say they’ve already hit a home run — in the form of two knee-high socks boasting “VEGAN” right on the cover (not to mention another instance of “vegan” in reference to the recipes).

But it gets better. On page 23, there’s a full-page feature on Micah Risk, the cover model — a 29-year-old mom, November Project devotee, 3:18 marathoner (a BQ in her first 26.2!), and nutritionist at Lighter, a company she co-founded in Boston to help women take control of their diets, with a focus on real, plant-based food. Plus she’s got a PMA tattoo … not quite NMA, but just as good!

It seems to me that you couldn’t pick a better person than Micah to spread our message on a mainstream platform, and today I’m thrilled to present an interview with this intriguing, street-stylish woman on NMA Radio.

PS — Speaking of Runner’s World, I’ll be at next month’s Runner’s World Half and Festival in Bethlehem, PA, along with Doug Hay, author of Rock Creek Runner and co-host of our podcast. The last RW event (in Boston) was a blast, so you’d like to join us, the discount codes below will save you 15% on any (or all) of the races. Hope to meet you there!

Here’s what we talk about in this episode:

  • How Micah became a Runner’s World cover model
  • The power and community of the November Project
  • How Micah trained to run her Boston-qualifying first marathon
  • What to eat before, during, and after a long run
  • Micah’s goals as a plant-based nutritionist
  • Where she got those socks!

Click the button below to listen now:

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My New Food Experiment: The 80/10/10 Fruitarian Diet

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Last week in the NMA newsletter, I promised to start publishing more frequent podcast episodes — and for the first time ever (I think), here’s our second episode within a week!

We’re shooting for 1-2 episodes per week now, and I may decide not to post all of them to the blog like this. So if you want to make sure you’re notified whenever there’s a new episode of NMA Radio, subscribe in iTunes. (And if you’d like to leave a nice review while you’re there, I’d really appreciate it.)

In this new episode, we talk a lot about fruit.

First, the Woodstock Fruit Festival, where last month my family spent a week camping and eating nothing but raw fruit and vegetables, and having a blast doing all the typical summer camp stuff surrounded by such amazing food. It’s put on each year by elite ultrarunner and fruitarian Michael Arnstein, and being able to hang out with him in person left me really inspired.

So much so that we took the diet home with us. Not quite 100 percent, but close — we’re eating fruitarian (also called 80/10/10, as in 80 percent carbs, 10 percent protein, 10 percent fat) until dinnertime each day, then a cooked meal for dinner most nights. (Our kids are still eating their normal diets all day, with just a little more fruit.)

We’re treating it as an experiment, and we’re not quite sure which way we’ll go: toward eating this way all day long (even dinner), or gradually back to our more typical (cooked) plant-based diet with slightly more focus on raw than before.

Whichever way it ends up, we’re having a lot of fun right now. Once we got over the “it’s weird to eat 3 mangoes for lunch, or make a smoothie out of 7 bananas and some water” thing, my wife and I started really looking forward to these simple “mono meals” (eating just one food until you’re full). And after three weeks of eating this way, we really feel great.

It’s way too early to say whether this diet works for us or not, but you’ll get a sense for my excitement in this new episode of the podcast.

Here’s what we talk about in this episode:

  • The Woodstock Fruit Festival
  • Transitioning from cooked to raw fruitarian
  • Typical meals on the 80/10/10 diet
  • “Mono” meals — why eating just one food at a time might make sense
  • Why you often feel great a few weeks after changing your diet (no matter which type of diet)
  • Concerns about eating this way
  • Fruitarian before 4: the struggles and the rewards

Click the button below to listen now:

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