• Emily Neilson

Vegan Macro Experiment

Sometimes it's just fun to just sign up for a Six-Week Exercise Transformation, including a macro-tracking feature, led by a trainer on Instagram. [Check out @sweatysorrentino on IG. It's too late for you to join the challenge, but she knows her stuff and is a professional inspiration – oh, and on top of all that she's vegan!]

I hemmed and hawed about signing up initially. Did I really want to? Was it so necessary? And like a lightning bolt, after days of hemming-hawing, I said to Taylor: We are doing this. We are getting shredded.

Perhaps it is the $500.00 1st Place prize sparking my old competitive streak.

Perhaps it was the feeling of just going for it, 'full-send', as the commentators say about down-hill skiers.

Or, perhaps it was the February wall I'm feeling: a new thing to try, a new daily structure.

In my research of vegan macros, it actually seemed kind of like ..... we do them already.... without even knowing it! With some exceptions like, unmonitored snacking; vegan ice cream; vegan baked goods, vegan cheese. Just another reason to eat a primarily whole-foods, vegan diet, people!

What are you talking about? What is a 'macro'?

Feel free to explore Google for a more expert description, but basically it refers to the major nutrients you primarily need in your food in order to function (ie. live!). Proteins, Carbohydrates, Fats. And basically, it can be a more healthful way to track your nutrition (aside from just counting calories).

Can you do it on a Vegan diet?

Yes, it's possible! There are lots of resources out there! Here's a good cheat-sheet I found.

How will your BTV change for the next Six Weeks?

Probably fewer croissants and baked goods; probably a lot more veggies. Probably smaller servings of pasta, for example, and larger serving of veggies on the side. You get the idea. Probably smoothies with a protein powder supplement (I don't love smoothies, especially not in the winter, but hey – I'm going full-send).

Why do this?

Why not?! Actually, I'm pretty curious what Taylor and I can accomplish in the next Six Weeks. We might not be going anywhere for Spring Break: but our bodies will be ready nonetheless!!!

What's the Exercise Program?

Five days of work-outs and runs. All weightlifting with bodyweight, bands, or dumbbells. Yesterday was the first day of lower body..... For the last two months I've been more interested in running, riding the Peloton, and a little Pilates here-and-there .... Needless to say, it will HURT when I stand up after finishing this post.

Can't go full-send without a little bit of muscle soreness though, right??


Super Simple, Super Delicious, Super Salad

– Chop the following (if you have other veggies, use/sub/etc): radish, carrots, celery, red pepper, mushrooms, cucumber, 1/4 avocado). If I had had tomatoes, I would have used them! If you have sprouts on hand, use 'em!

– Slice a lemon for dressing

– Wash greens (spinach, romaine, kale, etc. your choice)

– Tofu: Press for about 10 minutes; crumble into a bowl with 1/4 cup nutritional yeast, 1-2 tbsp soy sauce, 1 tsp of vegan-chicken salt (love this stuff)

1) Assemble the vegetables in an appealing way on your plate (presentation matters, always!)

2) Heat 1 tbsp or so of olive oil in a large sauté pan. When oil is shimmering, add your crumbled tofu mixture to the pan and spread evenly. Let it sauté, untouched, for about 4-5 minutes; use spatula to scrape the tofu (flip as best you can) and let cook another 4-5 minutes. Done! It will kind of look like scrambled eggs. It is PURE YUM.

3) Add tofu scramble to salad, dress with freshly squeezed lemon juice, top with some chia seeds or some nuts (sparingly!) and enjoy a hugely healthy lunch!

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