Thursday, March 28, 2013

To meat or not to meat?

Today's Workout:
6 mile run




So, here's the debate for today: do you think that endurance runners should eat meat or should not eat meat? Personally, I haven't eaten red meat in over 4 years and just last year, I introduced organic chicken to my diet. I eat organic chicken sporadically, so most of my protein is derived from fish and other sources that most people wouldn't consider "real" protein.

I decided to go the vegetarian route a few years ago after I learned that my liver and kidney functions were elevated. This essentially meant that there was an excessive amount of protein breakdown occurring in my body because my diet was largely composed of meat (I was bodybuilding during that time). So, after my doc told me to lay off the excessive amount of protein, I went vegetarian. Actually I wasn't truly vegetarian; I was pesco-vegetarian. A recent article by Runner's World defined peso-vegetarian as "A sub-classification referring to individuals who do not consume animal products such as meat, dairy, eggs, or poultry but do consume fish."

Besides introducing organic chicken to my diet, I am now eating organic eggs as well. So, basically the caveat to my diet is: no dairy, no red meat, minimal amount of processed foods, no fruit juices unless they are fresh and nothing fried. 

Comparing my running performance when I was pesco-vegetarian versus my running performance now, I would have to say that I am actually getting faster. The only difference I feel is the amount of energy I have. Now that I am eating chicken and eggs, I feel more energized; however, there may be other contributing factors to that such as, perhaps I'm resting more now or maybe my body is acclimating to the intensity of my workouts. 

You're probably wondering what other sources of protein I consume to supplement my protein intake, well here it goes:


  • Quinoa (it has 8g of protein per cup!)
  • Beans (such as chickpeas)
  • Nuts & nut butters (such as almonds, walnuts and almond butter; nuts have 9g of protein per 1/4 cup)
  • Vegetables (such as broccoli, cauliflower, brussels sprouts and asparagus)

What is your protein source?




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